The iPhone's lead over smartphone upstart Android may be short-lived, according to an industry watcher's predictions. Android smartphone sales will outstrip iPhone sales by 2012, market researcher Informa Telecoms & Media has predicted in a new report.
Monetization of free-to-play games just got a lot weirder. You’ve gotten used to paying real cash for hats in Team Fortress 2. But what if those purchases came with an actual hat, delivered to your mailbox via Amazon?
Analyst Gartner has put out its latest smartphone market report, and the Q2 2013 numbers show the inevitable finally occurred: smartphone sales exceeded feature phone sales for the first time.
Google's master plan for mobile is finally coming into focus.
Google Now on Android is one of the more genuinely exciting developments for that mobile OS in recent memory, and new evidence today signals it’s on its way to the desktop, too.
Android users are correct to complain that the iPhone often gets new features that are old for Android, but as loud as they may shout, they're the only ones listening. Apple truly flexes its muscles at the power of its brand.
With the recent software available to allow easy creation of interactive books and with the race to bring these products to market, there seems to be a more and more dilution of quality and a loss for the meaning of interactivity. When publishers create new eBook titles or convert a traditional printed book to a digital interactive eBook, they often miss the added value this new medium can provide.
Remember Next Issue Media, the “Hulu for Digital Magazines” consortium made up of the biggest names in publishing? It has finally delivered something worth talking about: Call it Netflix for Magazines. The pitch is simple and intuitive: All the magazines you want, delivered digitally to your tablet, for a flat fee of either $10 or $15 a month.
200 million connected TV devices will cumulatively ship in the next 18 months, and combined with Xbox (23 million+ Live customers), PS3, Wii, and devices like Apple TV and Roku, about 300 million Connected TVs will be in living rooms in the next 18 months. That’s as many TVs connected to the Internet as Android devices in the market today.
Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis, who made the BlackBerry a leading business tool but then presided over its precipitous decline, said they would step down on Monday as co-chairmen and co-chief executives of Research in Motion. The two men, in developing the innovative device that was the first to reliably deliver e-mail over airwaves, turned a tiny Canadian company into a global electronics giant. But they are stepping aside after disappointing investors and leaving customers wondering whether RIM still has the ability to compete, and perhaps even survive, in the rapidly changing markets for smartphones and tablet computers.
When it comes to brand love, consumers are notoriously fickle -- particularly when it comes to technology. That's apparent when combing New Media Metrics' Leap Index, which measures emotional attachment to brands to predict purchase behavior.
It’s always a danger to look into the crystal ball, everything is so distorted by the glass. But if everything remains as is, it’s hard to look at Google and not foresee the California company winning the future of social media, social technology, and all the bitstreams in between.
Google has made its largest and boldest acquisition yet with the $12.5bn purchase of Motorola’s mobile-phone division, a deal the search company hopes will bolster its Android smartphone system.
How a tiny piece of software created by a few Google engineers is ushering in the mobile revolution and reshaping the fortunes of the world's biggest tech companies.
Research2guidance, a Berlin-based research organization specialized in all things mobile, recently forecasted the worldwide smartphone application market to reach $15 billion by 2013. In an update, the firm says the global smartphone app market has in fact already reached $2.2 billion in the first six months of this year.
Facebook continues to be the number one destination for online social gaming, but Google is hoping to change that. It's become increasingly clear in recent months that the internet behemoth wants to challenge Facebook directly, and according to some in the analyst community, this new focus from Google is a necessary step for the company.
Nielsen's second-quarter statistics for smartphones are out, and of course it involves the quickly evolving and often bloody fight between Apple's iPhone and the various phones using Google's Android. For the first time, more new purchasers (within the past six months) have chosen Android more often than iPhone. Android accounted for 27% of those smartphone sales in the US, while the iPhone snagged 23%. BlackBerry, of course, remains on top.
Borders' new e-book store is now open for business. The bookstore chain officially unveiled its new e-book store on Wednesday, with a million and a half electronic books, both paid and free, in a variety of formats, including ePub, mobile, and PDF. Customers can read the e-books using free software powered by Kobo and designed for different devices, according to Borders. The lineup includes existing applications for the PC, Mac, iPhone, and iPad, and new apps just launched for Android and BlackBerry phones, all of which are available at Borders' Web site. In addition to reading the books through the apps, users can browse or search for e-books, download specific titles, and access and manage their e-book libraries.
AT&T is bulking up its Android roster with a new phone: the HTC Aria. It promises to be faster and more capable than the Motorola BACKFLIP and the Dell Aero. Aria comes with a 5 megapixel camera, a 3.2 inch display, a 600MHz Qualcomm MSM 7227 processor, the Android 2.1 Os, and the HTC Sense interface. It will be released on June 20, just five days before AT&T release another competing smartphone: the iPhone 4.
In the high-stakes race to catch Apple Inc.'s hit iPad, the Android operating system that Google Inc. popularized in cellphones is emerging as an early front-runner. Tablet-style computers—a moribund hardware category until the iPad started generating buzz earlier this year—are expected to be a big topic at next week's Computex trade show, a major forum for product announcements by manufacturers of personal computers.
Did Google just turn the tables on Apple? Having entered the mobile software market late with its Android offering, Google's initial efforts were a pale imitation of the iPhone OS, a clunky user experience on sub-par handsets. Fast forward to 2010. Suddenly, Google Android is winning over the hearts and minds of technologists and signing up 100,000 converts a day. That raises the question: Is the iPhone losing its sheen?
Lies, damned lies and statistics: You can play games with numbers, and recently the game has been to show Android phones are beating the iPhone in the U.S. Now new data proves that in the rest of the world, Google's still chasing Apple.
We blog a lot about Ford around here, mostly because they’ve done a stellar job of integrating social media both into their marketing campaigns and into their vehicles. But as of today, there’s a new sheriff in town: Chevrolet. With the Volt, Chevrolet’s new electric vehicle, the company is rolling out an excellent integration with the Android OS and OnStar that will allow for voice-activated features and mobile-to-car communication.
Google is a technology company. This doesn't mean it will abandon search. But after 20 years in technology and marketing, I know the signs and can say unequivocally that the company has crossed over. It reminds me a little of Microsoft's climb to the top, complete with regulatory issues and privacy concerns. The attention, this week anyway, turns toward applications, specifically those built on Android. And while those applications could integrate with search, the technology is the star of the show.
U.S. consumers are coming around to the Android operating systems for their smartphones, with the system moving past Apple to take the No. 2 position behind category leader RIM during the first quarter of 2010.
A new check-in app for objects is turning soda cans into media channels. StickyBits, which launched during South by Southwest Interactive in March, is an app that lets users affix video, photos, text or audio to real-world objects, as long as those objects have barcodes. This is an example of what some call physical URLs, and while StickyBits is in its early days, consumers are already turning their iPhone and Android apps to consumer package goods, meaning user-generated clouds are starting to form around real cans of Coke and Red Bull.
Last week I presented at Stanford Graduate School of Business in a session on Mobile Computing called, "Creating Mobile Experiences: It's the Platform, Stupid." As the title underscores, I am a big believer that to understand what makes mobile tick, you really need to look beyond a device's hardware shell (important, though it is), and fully factor in the composite that includes its software and service layers; developer tools and the ecosystem "surround." Successful platforms, after all, are more than the sum of their parts' propositions. They are not simply a bunch of dis-integrated ingredients.
Zinio's CMO Jeanniey Mullen on the benefits of catering to Steve Jobs' audience.
Palm kept its word this week and disappointed investors with dismal 3Q results. Investors responded by slashing another 20% from the embattled company’s shares. The financial situation doesn’t seem very good, and time is running out to turn things around as Palm continues to loses the big bets it has placed on the Pre and Pixi. The good news? The phone is becoming just an app on a smart, portable device. The disruptive contours of that smart, portable device is still in flux, and about to get buffeted again by the release of Apple’s iPad in about two weeks. This is anybody’s game — heck, if even Google is worried about the next Google, why can’t Palm be the next Palm? Here are five ideas humbly suggested to get the iconic company back on track.
It looked like the beginning of a beautiful friendship. Three years ago, Eric E. Schmidt, the chief executive of Google, jogged onto a San Francisco stage to shake hands with Steven P. Jobs, Apple’s co-founder, to help him unveil a transformational wonder gadget — the iPhone — before throngs of journalists and adoring fans at the annual MacWorld Expo. Google and Apple had worked together to bring Google’s search and mapping services to the iPhone, the executives told the audience, and Mr. Schmidt joked that the collaboration was so close that the two men should simply merge their companies and call them “AppleGoo.” Today, such warmth is in short supply. Mr. Jobs, Mr. Schmidt and their companies are now engaged in a gritty battle royale over the future and shape of mobile computing and cellphones, with implications that are reverberating across the digital landscape.
Google has just rolled out “Google Shopper,” a new mobile application for Android devices that offers a variety of different ways to search for products. In addition to basic search functionality, users can search by voice, take a picture of cover art, or scan a bar code to get detailed product information and price comparison. Google (Google) introduces the application on its website and in the video below.
Those slightly amusing Mac vs. PC Apple ads are getting a bit tired now, but when the PR guys dream up the successors, they might need a rethink on the strategy. Because the new "Mac vs. PC" battle might be "Apple vs. Google." The idea has popped up courtesy of The New York Times's David Pogue, who's also been speaking to the editors of tech blogs Gizmodo and Engadget. In a blog post late yesterday, Pogue believes he has revealed a "whole new untapped population online: The Android Army."
Google stepped up its attack on the smartphone market on Tuesday, introducing a new touch-screen handset called Nexus One that is widely seen as a rival to Apple’s iPhone. Google also said that it would sell the Nexus One, which it called a superphone, exclusively through a new online store. Google, which earns the vast majority of its revenue from advertising, said it was dipping its toes in the direct retailing business not to reap profits from the sale of phones but to broaden the availability of handsets running its Android software.
Reasons to feel bearish about Microsoft aren't hard to find. But it's the software giant's diminishing profile in the mobile world that is the talk of Silicon Valley right now. The explosion of mobile applications on devices like Apple's iPhone and Motorola's Droid presages far-reaching changes in consumer behavior. Google gets that. Aside from helping develop the Android mobile operating system, the company plans to buy mobile ad firm AdMob. And now it is working on plans to sell its own phone. It's a different story at Microsoft.
Marketing its own mobile phone might turn Google into a rival to many companies it now counts as allies in building the Android operating system.
In recent months, tech blogs have been abuzz with rumors that Google is planning to market its own smartphone based on its Android operating system. The plan would signal a more aggressive effort by Google, which so far has relied on partners to build and market Android phones, to become a force in mobile devices. It could also put Google at odds with those partners, which include Verizon Wireless and Motorola, and it would sharpen its competition with Apple, whose iPhone dominates the high-end smartphone market in the United States.
There is a lot of speculation on why Google is buying AdMob, but the obvious reason is that Google wants more direct access to what they are betting heavily on--that mobile is the next great advertising medium. They've made a huge bet on mobile with Android--which is an obvious move to own the mobile search ad market, but now they've got their hooks into the mobile display ad market as well. But what many might be missing could be the biggest reason Google ( GOOG - news - people ) bought AdMob: the data.
Touchscreen smartphones are the thing in the U.S. this year, with sales growing so rapidly it would give the Ares I-X a run for its money. And next year the pace of the change is going to be even faster. Welcome to the touchscreen era. Comscore's data looks at the three months ending August of this year versus the same period last year, and the numbers pretty much speak for themselves: Among U.S. smartphone subscribers aged 13 and over, some 33.8 million owned regular push-button smartphones, against 23.8 million owning touchscreen ones. While that data looks stacked in favor of regular push-button phones, check out the growth rate. Smartphone ownership grew a whopping 63% over last year, proving this is the smartphone age all right--dumbphone sales simply can't compete with that growth. And touchscreen smartphone sales exploded 159% at the same time, which is incredible.
Last week, I reviewed not one, but three new phones. You’d think that would be enough for a while, but fall is peak season for new mobile devices, and another major release — Motorola’s Droid — is upon us this week. But before we get to today’s big review of the Droid, we need a noun. What should we call these iPhone-like, touch screen Wi-Fi phones with music and video, real Web browsers, e-mail, sensors (light, tilt, location, proximity), and, above all, app stores? These machines can download thousands of free or cheap add-on programs — “apps” — and become GPS units, musical instruments and medical equipment. “Smartphone” is too limited. A smartphone is a cellphone with e-mail — an old BlackBerry, a Blackjack, maybe a Treo. This new category — somewhere between cellphones and laptops, or even beyond them — deserves a name of its own.
On Thursday, Google co-founder Sergey Brin made a surprise visit to the Web 2.0 Summit and was interviewed on-stage by John Battelle for about 18 minutes. Our full notes from that day are here, but the video above gives a good sense of where Brin’s head is at right now.
The Google Custom Search Blog announced the release of a mobile friendly Google Custom Search engine interface support for devices such as the iPhone, iPod Touch, Android and Palm Pre.
Whatever rumors were brewing a few months ago that Apple would break its exclusivity with AT&T and take its iPhone to other carriers, it's a good bet they can be put to bed for now. Less than two weeks after Verizon Wireless aired a TV commercial that takes aim at AT&T's network service, it's now going straight for the iPhone. The teaser campaign, which plugs the new Android device and debuted Saturday night during the playoff game between the New York Yankees and the Los Angeles Angels, is, however, causing some head-scratching.
Verizon and Motorola finally lifted the curtain on their new Droid Android phone yesterday. Make no mistake, this is Android’s flagship product, and the first phone that will pose a significant threat to Apple’s iPhone. And it will be available very soon, possibly as early as the end of this month. MobileCrunch has been tracking the phone, which has also been called the Tao or Sholes, for some time. Just about anyone who has come in contact with the phone can’t stop talking about it. And from what we hear, they have good reason.
Google wants to own the search experience across every mobile media platform, and its latest offering is a universal search box that lets users of Android-based smartphones look for apps, contact information and web content right from the device's home screens. This means users never have to leave their phone's home page or open a web browser to look up stock quotes, weather or a flight's status. The Quick Search Box,as it's called, also ranks search results by what a user has searched for and has used most often. Android users can also search and call contacts by voice with a tap of the microphone button next to the query box.
The prefix “smart” indicates that smartphones are better than other phones, but this hasn’t been entirely true in the past. Yes, a smartphone can do a lot of things a regular phone can’t, however – by definition – it’s far more complex, has a steeper learning curve, and is generally not the device of choice for most of the population. This has changed in the past couple of years. Recently, Bernstein Research’s analyst Toni Sacconaghi has predicted that the smartphone market will grow 27% in 2010 and 2011, after having grown about 35% every year over the past three years. This is good news for Apple, whose iPhone – a smartphone, and the only phone Apple sells – only needs to grow with the market to achieve amazing sales numbers. But why is this happening? Have more people suddenly decided they need more powerful, but also more complex phones in their lives? I doubt it.
With the rollout of an "augmented-reality" app for Android phones, IBM is bringing state-of-the-art technology to the U.K.'s most traditional sporting event, the Wimbledon Tennis Championships. As the tournament kicks off on June 22, the crowds at the All England Lawn Tennis Club will be able to use an Android smartphone application specially developed to enhance the event.