jump to navigation

Ribbit announces winners of its “killer” mobile apps competition » VentureBeat March 31, 2009

Posted by hruf in Mobile & Gadgets.
Tags: , , , , ,
add a comment

Ribbit, the mobile development platform owned by BT, announced the winners of its $100,000 Killer App Challenge today, recognizing teams that most effectively integrated voice functionality into apps, web sites and mobile communities. Products created on the Ribbit system are unique in that they span carriers, devices and operating systems — giving the submissions a good amount of freedom, but also the challenge of working seamlessly across platforms.

via Ribbit announces winners of its “killer” mobile apps competition » VentureBeat.


How iPhone 3.0 May Revolutionize The Smartphone Industry March 30, 2009

Posted by pannet in Mobile & Gadgets.
Tags: , ,
add a comment

It’s easy to see why many people were underwhelmed by Apple’s iPhone 3.0 sneak peek last Tuesday. Most of the attention focused on dull features like cut-and-paste and multimedia messaging — capabiliites that have long been in demand by iPhone users, but which competitors have had for a long time now. […] With a new business model for third-party software, peer-to-peer networking, and richer interfaces for third-party hardware, Apple’s got a potential game-changer in iPhone 3.0.
Let’s take them one at a time: […]


Smartphones: Its the Software, Stupid! March 30, 2009

Posted by pannet in Mobile & Gadgets.
Tags: , , , , , , ,
add a comment

In less than two years, Apple (AAPL) has gone from no cellphone to having a single phone model that accounts for a 8.2% of the 2008 smartphone market 10.7% in Q4 and 0.9% of the overall 2008 market. The secrets have been its pre-existing industry ties (including its brand, desktop software and iTunes Music Store), its skills as a systems integrator, and their ingenious strategy for creating a new ecosystem.
However, at its core Apple has succeeded because it’s a great software company. They have been a software company since their founding — when Steve Wozniak wrote software to control Apple’s first floppy disk drive. Apple has changed what consumers (and the industry) expects from a smartphone through their software.
Of the major players in the industry, only one or two have the prospect of also being great software companies. The rest should admit that they’re a failure and outsource software to outsiders, shifting from vertically integrated R&D to open innovation. […]

Clearly, Research in Motion (RIMM) (16.6% of smartphones, 1.9% overall) is a great software company. There are aspects of the BlackBerry software that I don’t care for, such as the browser. However, there is no question that they have both created a compelling user client and built a tremendously successful, rapidly growing business around systems integration with their industry-leading backend. […]


Is internet TV the key to à la carte? March 30, 2009

Posted by hruf in Internet & Communities, Multimedia.
Tags: , , , , , ,
add a comment

There’s been a lot of controversy over the years in regards to à la carte cable programming, and more recenlty, Hulu no longer playing nice with Boxee. The two are related to each other because in both cases, consumers think they’ll lead to cheaper content. And let’s be honest — both seem appealing because we want to spend less money for the same content. The problem, of course, is that if we’re spending less money, then someone is going to lose that revenue; and it goes without saying that any decent business model requires more revenue, not less. So those big corporations collecting all of those subscription fees are obviously going to have a problem with the idea. Now the conundrum comes in when you throw Netflix in the mix. Rather than nickel and diming you to death (much like your cable company), Netflix wants to give you an all-you-can-eat buffet for a monthly fee. The irony here is that while Hollywood loves subscriptions when it comes to cable TV, that’s not so much the case when it comes to Netflix. The reason is simple — we know you see this coming — it’s because the monthly fee is about three times that of a Netflix bill.

via Is internet TV the key to à la carte?.

Social search startup Aardvark hires search and mobile experts, building iPhone app March 30, 2009

Posted by andre in Internet & Communities, Mobile & Gadgets.
Tags: , , ,
add a comment

Aardvark began opening its social search engine to more users earlier this month, and now the ambitious company is starting to reveal more of its future plans. It’s bulking up its Google-heavy technical team with Sameer Paranjpye, the Director of Yahoo’s grid computing group and a founding member of the Hadoop project. It’s also taking aim at the mobile market, hiring on Ben Keighran, the founder of mobile messaging service BluePulse. I caught up with Keighran earlier today and he sketched out what sounds like a very useful iPhone application — it will let you get answers from friends wherever you are. […]

In testing so far, around 70 percent of active Aardvark users respond to a targeted question, more than 90 percent of questions get answered — and over half of all questions get answered in under five minutes. […]

One of the most obvious use cases for wanting to get an expert answer from someone you know is when you’re away from the computer — like when traveling in a foreign city and trying to find a fun place to go out at night. You can already use Aardvark on your phone using mobile email or a third-party mobile IM client, but the company aims to make it even easier through mobile applications and SMS. First up for development is an iPhone application, Keighran (pictured) says, that will let you either type in a question or speak it into the phone. The message will then go into the Aardvark system, appearing in front of the experts you’re connected to on the site — sort of like a local review site, but live and just with your friends.

Look for the iPhone app in the next two months.

via Social search startup Aardvark hires search and mobile experts, building iPhone app » VentureBeat

First Look: Lala’s iPhone App Will Stream Your Music Library From The Cloud March 30, 2009

Posted by andre in Internet & Communities.
Tags: , , ,
add a comment

Online music may be a treacherous space right now, but there are still a handful of music startups that may be coming close to getting it right. One of our favorites is Lala, a streaming music site that allows users to put their digital music library in the cloud, which can then be accessed from any computer. And soon, they’ll be able to access every song they own from their iPhones too, without having to worry about storage capacity or syncing. […]

via First Look: Lala’s iPhone App Will Stream Your Music Library From The Cloud

Hulu Gains 10 Million Viewers In February, Now No. 4 Video Site In U.S. March 29, 2009

Posted by pannet in Internet & Communities, Multimedia.
Tags: , , ,
add a comment

Hulu jumped two spots to become the fourth largest video site in the U.S. in February, according to the latest data from comScore VideoMetrix. Hulu drew an audience of 34.7 million people who watched 332.5 million video streams. That is a 42 percent increase in unique U.S. visitors, up from 24.5 million in January, and a 33 percent increase in streams, up from and 250.5 million streams.

In a single month, Hulu overtook Viacom and Microsoft in total viewers and video streams (see January data). And Hulu is catching up to No. 3 video site Yahoo, which streamed 353.5 million streams in February. Fox Interactive (MySpace) was No. 2 with 462.6 million streams. And YouTube once again blew everyone else out of the water with 5.3 billion streams.


Why aren’t we all watching TV via the web? March 29, 2009

Posted by pannet in Internet & Communities, Multimedia.
Tags: , , , , ,
add a comment

The old broadcast format of scheduled programming should be dead by now. Time-shifting – recording shows onto a storage device to watch whenever you want, rather than when they’re broadcast – and Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) were supposed to have been the final headshot for a medium weakened by repeated blows from ‘new’ forms of entertainment. […]

What we lack is an application to aggregate all this media, bringing it together into one manageable place on our desktops like a virtual set-top box. But it’s not for the want of trying.  […]

The best systems allow for simple embedding. The top of the class – if you’re lucky enough to be in the US or behind a proxy server – is Hulu. This serves up content via a simple Flash applet and its range of shows and clips can be added to any website. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said of the majority of companies here, due to a reliance on the increasingly anachronistic Windows DRM.

Similar plans to move things forward with an uber-iPlayer standard for all of the UK terrestrial networks – dubbed Project Kangaroo – recently hit the skids after the Competition Commission vetoed work on it due to complaints from the likes of Virgin Media and Sky. At the moment the project seems to be dead in the water, but it’s not impossible that a third party will try the same sort of thing at some point in the future.

Other promising developments also exist. Cisco claims it’s working hard with the movie studios to make premium video feeds available on all your web-enabled devices through its new media-friendly hardware and Eos net platform: a site-design tool that standardises online distribution. It’s early days, but the list of studios who’ve signed up for it suggests that video producers are catching on to the fact that the only way they’ll beat torrent sites is by making their content more convenient to access.

The sad truth, though, is that despite technology so perfectly suited to desktop and mobile phone web apps, it’s the television manufacturers that are making the most progress with IPTV on demand. Nearly every major vendor now has a full range of sets available that can stream shows or movies direct from Internet sources such as CinemaNow and Netfix, using a browser that matches their standard on-screen displays.

PC users, for the time being, must instead be content with their supply of YouTube clips, a huge bookmarks folder or a plethora of bandwidth hungry applications for each potential source.


Google Chrome Comics – another way of white paper March 29, 2009

Posted by hruf in Internet & Communities.
Tags: , ,
add a comment

On a quite interesting reportage about one of the genius developer behind Google Chrome (Lars Bak – The genius behind Google’s web browser) is a hint to “specially commissioned comic”, which tells the story behind Google Chrome. It’s definitely another way of a white paper 😉

Google Chrome Comic.

MEX: The PMN Mobile User Experience Conference & Awards March 27, 2009

Posted by hruf in Mobile & Gadgets.
Tags: , , , ,
add a comment

There is a quite interesting conference about user experience on mobile phones. One key of the conference is the discussion about several key mobile user experience for the next 12 month:

“MEX is a very different style of conference, dedicated to enhancing the mobile user experience. Each year the MEX team produces a new Manifesto to challenge the industry on the key mobile user experience issues for the next 12 months. We design each Manifesto to inspire and provoke the most creative thinkers in the mobile business, using a combination of metrics and insights.”

This year the Manifesto will have the following topics:

  1. Manifesto #1: User interface design is key to leadership in application stores
  2. Manifesto #2: Achieving great tactile experience is a subtle art
  3. Manifesto #3: Customer research methodology must be enhanced to close the reality gap
  4. Manifesto #4: Changing economics will facilitate increased diversity in handset portfolios
  5. Manifesto #5: Investment in input and display modalities must increase
  6. Manifesto #6: The next billion customers are already here
  7. Manifesto #7: The delicate art of balancing commercial imperative and user experience
  8. Manifesto #8: Location data forms an integral part of user experience

Really a lot of these points are quite interesting, especially for companies which want to deliver software and services in this area. The page describes every point in more detail and gives also background information, why they think it is a key area for the next 12 month.

via MEX: The PMN Mobile User Experience Conference & Awards.