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Lenovo: mobile Internet to be 80% of sales in five years | Electronista March 13, 2010

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The vast majority of Lenovo’s sales will come from Internet-capable portable devices in five years, company chief Yang Yuanqing stated on Friday. He observed that ThinkPads and IdeaPads already outweigh desktops but that fully 70 to 80 percent of Lenovo’s devices will be mobile Internet devices of some kind within as little as three and no more than five years. Many of these will be smartphones, but they should also include crossover devices such as the IdeaPad U1 notebook/tablet hybrid and the Skylight smartbook.

Most of its strategy for 2010 will involve pushing into relatively underserved areas for the company, such as middle Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. Its longer-term “protect and attack” strategy would focus on solidifying performance in China before shifting attention to other markets.

The approach puts it into more direct competition with both established notebook rivals like Acer and HP but also firms whose lineups have only partially overlapped with Lenovo’s in recent years, such as Apple and HTC. Lenovo has just recently entered touchscreen smartphones in earnest with the Ophone O1 and the upcoming LePhone, and devices like the U1 are likely to clash with the iPad as well as existing and widely rumored UMPC and tablet models from HTC.

via Lenovo: mobile Internet to be 80% of sales in five years | Electronista.


Behind the Smartphone Craze: redrawing the map of mobile platforms February 2, 2010

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Thought Android and iPhone are taking over the world? Think again. The device platforms map is more fragmented than ever, while the media hype distorts the commercial reality. […]

The Smartphone Craze
The other day I was reading some of the usual hype-induced reports on the Smartphone revolution. Wanting to put things into perspective I pulled out some old Smartphone forecasts from 2004-2005 by the likes of IDC, Informa and Ovum.

In those pre-historic days the main Smartphone contenders were Symbian and Windows. Blackberry was still an insignificant niche, and touch screen devices were still clunky stylus based UIQ phones and iPAQs. Yet surprisingly, the average Smartphone share of shipments that was forecast for 2010 was …about 30%. So even without the Apple & Google revolution fanning the flames, many analysts believed in the mass migration to Smartphones.

Reality check: by looking at the numbers for the first three quarters of 2009, it appears that last year there have shipped no more than 170-180 million devices considered to be Open OS Smartphones. Indeed Symbian, Windows, iPhone, Blackberry, Android, WebOS, LiMO and Maemo taken all together still only constitute about 15-17% of shipments. This percentage is in fact much lower than the 2009 Smartphone share predicted a few years ago by many research companies. […]

The bets are spreading
As of late 2009, the only companies who are shipping true Open OS Smartphones in mass volumes are Nokia (Symbian), RIM (Blackberry), Apple (iPhone) and HTC (Windows Mobile, now Android). This will no doubt start to change over the course of time as Android shipments start to ramp up and the rest of the platforms realize their growth potential, but it is still not an overnight revolution.

Looking forward, this thesis shows that the market will be much more diverse than the simplistic notion that everyone either wants an App Store capable iPhone or Droid, or alternatively, an ultra-low cost phone to make phone calls. There is many more commercial dynamics at play, making up a complex platform map which is driven by customer ownership.

In 2009 the number of available device software platforms effectively grew, creating more fragmentation in the industry, not less. There are clearly mid-range segments and geographical markets with varying needs, which can be addressed with various software platforms, not necessarily in the traditional view of Smartphones vs. RTOS “dumb phones”. Simply betting on one or two platforms to rule the industry is not a sensible plan.


Read the full article at VisionMobile.comBehind the Smartphone Craze: redrawing the map of mobile platforms | VisionMobile :: blog

Facebook Statistics January 12, 2010

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Company Figures
  • More than 350 million active users
  • 50% of our active users log on to Facebook in any given day
  • More than 35 million users update their status each day
  • More than 55 million status updates posted each day
  • More than 2.5 billion photos uploaded to the site each month
  • More than 3.5 billion pieces of content (web links, news stories, blog posts, notes, photo albums, etc.) shared each week
  • More than 3.5 million events created each month
  • More than 1.6 million active Pages on Facebook
  • More than 700,000 local businesses have active Pages on Facebook
  • Pages have created more than 5.3 billion fans
Average User Figures
  • Average user has 130 friends on the site
  • Average user sends 8 friend requests per month
  • Average user spends more than 55 minutes per day on Facebook
  • Average user clicks the Like button on 9 pieces of content each month
  • Average user writes 25 comments on Facebook content each month
  • Average user becomes a fan of 2 Pages each month
  • Average user is invited to 3 events per month
  • Average user is a member of 12 groups
International Growth
  • More than 70 translations available on the site
  • About 70% of Facebook users are outside the United States
  • Over 300,000 users helped translate the site through the translations application
  • More than one million developers and entrepreneurs from more than 180 countries
  • Every month, more than 70% of Facebook users engage with Platform applications
  • More than 500,000 active applications currently on Facebook Platform
  • More than 250 applications have more than one million monthly active users
  • More than 80,000 websites have implemented Facebook Connect since its general availability in December 2008
  • More than 60 million Facebook users engage with Facebook Connect on external websites every month
  • Two-thirds of comScore’s U.S. Top 100 websites and half of comScore’s Global Top 100 websites have implemented Facebook Connect
  • There are more than 65 million active users currently accessing Facebook through their mobile devices.
  • People that use Facebook on their mobile devices are almost 50% more active on Facebook than non-mobile users.
  • There are more than 180 mobile operators in 60 countries working to deploy and promote Facebook mobile products

VisionMobile :: blog :: Mobile recommendations: market overview and outlook December 15, 2009

Posted by hruf in Internet & Communities, Mobile & Gadgets.
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[We ‘ve all come to expect ‘people who bought this also bought that’ from online retailers. But the technology is increasingly being adopted in mobile, whether it’s App Stores, media storefronts or operator CRM programmes. Research Director Andreas Constantinou analyses the market of recommendation solutions, the key vendors and casts an eye on the future of recommendations in mobile.]

The market of recommendations solutions is one of the most underhyped in the mobile industry. What started as ‘people who bought this also bought that’ has found its way into 10s of operator portals, not to mention 1,000s of mobile websites – but has seen very little analysis in maintream media.

Recommendations are also the differentiator (the cherry on the cake) for today’s App Stores – see earlier analysis of the App Store 2-year future. This has prompted several mobile operators (including Vodafone, O2 Telefonica and T-Mobile) to issue RFIs/RFQs in 2009. In parallel to the rising commercial adoption, the research interest has also surged, with the Recommender Systems 09 conference gathering 50% more paper submissions than last year from 35 countries – making this a rare case of synchronicity between commercial and academic worlds. The recommendations market is just emerging into the mainstream industry radar while so much vendor and operator activity has been going on behind the scenes.

Recommendation solutions are appearing in a number of different forms:
Mobile Portal Personalization: adaptation of navigational elements, content listed, ads served and personalised search results (e.g. Changing Worlds, Choice Stream, Media Unbound and Leiki)
– Content Discovery and Recommendations: pure content discovery and recommendations across content types (e.g. Xiam, FAST)
Subscriber segment targeting: user profiling and segmentation as part of an online marketing campaign (e.g. Coremetrics and Pontis)
Influencer targeting: profiling and identification of influential subscribers (e.g. Xtract and Strands)
Mobile advertising solutions: inventory targeting (e.g. Jumptap, Aggregate Knowledge, Velti/Ad Infuse, Medio and Wunderloop)
Web (non-mobile) Product/Content Personalization: cross-channel product and content recommendations optimised for retailers, web and media (e.g. ChoiceStream, Loomia, Aggregate Knowledge)
Business analytics: product/offer bundle recommendations based on user segmentation and real-time behaviour analysis (e.g. Olista, Oracle, ThinkAnalytics and Coremetrics)

We ‘ve spoken to several vendors of recommendation solutions, focusing on those closer to the mobile industry. What’s most interesting in comparing and contrasting solutions is the target customer, use cases addressed and unique selling points and how these differ across vendors. The next table summarises our findings from researching eight key vendors in the recommendations market: Xiam, Changing Worlds, Ericsson, Loomia, Pontis, July Systems, Olista and Choice Stream. This is only a subset of the circa 40 vendors who offer some form of recommendation solution, whether pre-integrated into a vertical form (e.g. App Store) towards operators or offered horizontally across multiple touch points (e.g. mobile, broadband, web, retail) towards media brands.


(click to enlarge)

So what’s next? In the mobile domain operators are integrating recommendations into App Stores, but will be moving to business analytics, advanced CRM and product/service recommendations during 2010-11. We don’t see recommendations as applicable to multiple touch points (e.g. mobile AND broadband) just yet, as recommendation engines need to be highly optimised and continuously tuned to the channel and content type in question.

The sophistication of recommendation engines needed firstly for live clickstream processing and secondly for content-specificity implies that the incumbent value-added service and SDP vendors will need to buy in (rather than build) technology. We expect this to will lead to M&As thanks to the abundant technology startups out there. Clearly an interesting space to watch in 2010.

via VisionMobile :: blog :: Mobile recommendations: market overview and outlook.

IDC’s 2010 Forecast and Top10 Predictions December 4, 2009

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IDC’S Top10 Trends for 2010:

2010 will be a year of modest recovery for the IT and telecommunications industries. But the recovery will not mean a return to the pre-recession status quo. Rather, we’ll see a radically transforming marketplace — driven by surging demand in emerging
markets, growing impact from the cloud services model, an explosion of mobile devices and applications, and the continuing rollout of higher-speed networks. These transformational forces will drive key players to redefine themselves and their offerings and will spark lots of M&A activity.

  • Growth will return to the IT industry in 2010. We predict 3.2% growth for the year returning the industry to 2008 spending levels of about $1.5 trillion.
  • 2010 will also see improved growth and stability in the worldwide telecommunications market, with worldwide spending predicted to increase 3%.
  • Emerging markets will lead the IT recovery, with BRIC countries growing 8–13%.
  • Cloud computing will expand and mature as we see a strategic battle for cloud platform leadership, new public cloud hot spots, private cloud offerings, cloud appliances, and offerings that bridge public and private clouds.
  • It will be a watershed year in the ascension of mobile devices as strategic platforms for commercial and enterprise developers as over 1 billion access the Internet, iPhone apps triple, Android apps quintuple, and Apple’s “iPad” arrives.
  • Public networks — more important than ever — will continue their aggressive evolution to fiber and 3G and 4G wireless. 4G will be overhyped, more wireless networks will become “invisible,” and the FCC will regulate over-the-top VoIP.
  • Business applications will undergo a fundamental transformation — fusing business applications with social/collaboration software and analytics into a new
    generation of “socialytic” apps, challenging current market leaders.
  • Rising energy costs and pressure from the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference will make sustainability a source of renewed opportunity for the IT industry in 2010.
  • Other industries will come out of the recession with a transformation agenda and look to IT as an increasingly important lever for these initiatives. Smart meters
    and electronic medical records will hit important adoption levels.
  • The IT industry’s transformations will drive a frenetic pace of M&A activity.

See the full reports for details:


Over half of Android developers dissatisfied with app profits – FierceDeveloper December 1, 2009

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Given mounting frustrations over Apple’s App Store standards and surging interest in writing for Google’s rival Android platform, you might think it’s all puppies and rainbows in Android developer circles, but tensions are simmering there as well. In a recent interview with About.com, id Software co-founder and technical director John Carmack (the lead programmer on bestselling titles including Doom and Quake) said he has no interest in Android, citing financial questions: “Android really has the support and the flexibility, but I’ve been talking with the Electronics Arts people (who publish some of id’s products) about Android, and many folks are saying the money isn’t there.” Carmack’s concerns are echoed by mobile games publisher Gameloft, which said it will slash investment in its Android efforts: “We have significantly cut our investment in Android platform, just like… many others,” Gameloft finance director Alexandre de Rochefort recently told an investor conference. “Google has not been very good to entice customers to actually buy products. On Android, nobody is making significant revenue.” Rochefort adds that Gameloft is selling 400 times the number of games via iPhone than on Android.

Even with Android games enjoying a 53 percent month-over-month gross revenue increase in October 2009 according to data issued by strategic market research and consulting firm Fade LLC, the numbers are still alarming–Fade indicates that October’s best-selling premium Android title, Lupis Labs Software’s Robo Defense, sold 7,600 units at $2.99 each, translating to gross monthly revenues of just $22,724. With developers retaining 70 percent of Android Market revenues, Lupis Labs took home about $15,907 in Robo Defense sales over the month in question. Now a new survey released by location system provider Skyhook Wireless indicates that 57 percent of Android developers express dissatisfaction with their Android profits, with 90 percent of respondents reporting individual app downloads of 10,000 or less. In fact, 52 percent of Android developers indicate their total app downloads fall below 5,000.

The Skyhook survey identifies a number of additional factors contributing to Android developer frustrations, including the Android Market storefront’s design and discovery options as well as the absence of an effective billing system. Eighty-two percent of respondents argue Android Market’s layout contributes to their application going unnoticed by consumers, and 43 percent of developers blame Google Checkout for their lackluster download volumes, believing they would sell more applications if Android switched to operator billing or adopted a simpler payment process. Fragmentation is another major concern among developers–with an increasing number of Android-based smartphones hitting the market, 46 percent of coders surveyed say they anticipate different versions of Android complicating their developmental efforts. The end result: Sixty-eight percent of respondents tell Skyhook they are somewhat or not likely to invest additional time and energy into their Android applications. Manufacturer announcements indicate there will be more than 50 Android smartphones available in the very near future, meaning there’s no time like the present for Google to make Android Market a more hospitable environment for software sellers and buyers alike.

via Over half of Android developers dissatisfied with app profits – FierceDeveloper.

Gartner Says Worldwide SaaS Revenue to Grow 18 Percent in 2009 November 11, 2009

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Worldwide software as a service (SaaS) revenue is forecast to reach $7.5 billion in 2009, a 17.7 percent increase from 2008 revenue of $6.4 billion, according to Gartner, Inc. The market will show consistent growth through 2013 when worldwide SaaS revenue will total over $14 billion for the enterprise application markets.

“The adoption of SaaS continues to grow and evolve within the enterprise application markets,” said Sharon Mertz, research director at Gartner. “The composition of the worldwide SaaS landscape is evolving as vendors continue to extend regionally, increase penetration within existing accounts and ‘greenfield’ opportunities, and offer more-vertical-specific solutions as part of their service portfolio or through partners.”[…]

Table 1
Worldwide Software Revenue for SaaS Delivery Within the Enterprise Application Software Markets
(Millions of Dollars)


2009 2008
Content, Communications and Collaboration (CCC) 2,573 2,143
Office Suites 68 56
Digital Content Creation (DCC) 62 44
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) 2,281 1,872
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) 1,239 1,176
Supply Chain Management (SCM) 826 710
Other Application Software 472 387
Total Enterprise Software 7,521 6,388

Source: Gartner (November 2009)

via Gartner Says Worldwide SaaS Revenue to Grow 18 Percent in 2009.

Why Google’s Acquisition Of AdMob Isn’t Just About Advertising November 11, 2009

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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 bought AdMob: the data.

With the acquisition of AdMob, Google now has access to usage data of many of the most popular mobile apps–especially the apps in the iTunes App Store. For iPhones. If Google is taking on Apple for mobile OS market share, they just scored a huge competitive advantage. Google will know more details than ever about how people are using iPhone apps, how they are engaging with advertising within those apps, and users’ loyalty to those apps. […]

via Why Google’s Acquisition Of AdMob Isn’t Just About Advertising – Forbes.com

Google acquires AdMob and Gizmo5 November 10, 2009

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In a single day we caught two news items where we have Google on one side and a smaller company being acquired on the other.

The first news item deals with mobile advertising network/platform – AdMob. The search giant paid $750 million in stock with the idea to obviously dominate the mobile ad market just like they do on a desktop. AdMob is the single largest iPhone ad network and has recently acquired AdWhirl, the company that serves mobile ads from multiple sources. In addition, AdMob also covers other platforms, Android included. Among their clients are such well known companies like Ford and Coca-Cola.

In the other news, Google has acquired VoIP company Gizmo5 for $30 million in cash. With this deal, the search giant gets a true SIP/VoIP provider under its belt opening up new possibilities for its Google Voice service. Moreover, there are certainly some Gizmo5’s assets that could be used to improve Google Talk.

And that sums it up. I’ve no doubts AdMob’s assets will be used properly — after all advertising is Google’s cash cow — but for Gizmo5, I’m not sure. There are certainly some interesting things Google could do with it, but we thought the same for Orkut and Dodgeball, and where are they now? Any thoughts?

via Google acquires AdMob and Gizmo5 | IntoMobile.com

Pricing Strategies for Location Based Apps November 4, 2009

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INTERVIEW: Mobile app stores are proving to be extremely valuable channels for getting products to market – whether you’re a big name navigation brand or an unheard of independent with a cool new location-enabled application. But a key element to maximising revenue opportunities is adopting the correct pricing strategy. GPS Business News spoke to Peter Farago, vice president, marketing, for Flurry Analytics, the mobile applications development services provider, about factors that determine pricing strategy. The number of navigation and location-aware applications added to the iPhone App Store just keeps on growing. At the latest count there were over 3,000 location apps on offer. Throw in Google’s Android Market, Research In Motion’s BlackBerry App World and the app stores of Microsoft, Nokia and Palm, and the range of applications becomes even larger.

With such an abundance of choice facing the consumer it’s vital that developers select the right pricing strategy for their products. For apps this generally requires a few basic decisions: apps can either be given away for free, with revenue generated through ads, or be paid for. Brand strength is seen as a key factor in going down the paid for route, while less-recognizable brands frequently go to market with free trials to entice consumers to try-and-buy.

Peter Farago, vice president, marketing for Flurry, said much of the learning in the market has centered on whether ad-supported apps earn more revenue than paid apps, what price to charge and when to drop price. He said navigation applications tend to remain on a consumer’s handset for a long period of time. Unlike “gimmick” apps, they are perceived as having sustainable value and therefore consistently revisited over time – making them better suited to subscription. “If it were me and I were a product manager, I would charge for a navigation app,” he said.

Flurry recently analysed over 2,000 applications for usage and frequency of use over a 90-day period, breaking them down into 19 categories. The findings showed that user retention for navigation apps is 73% after 30 days, but falls to 30% after 90 days (the average for all apps is 25%). Overall, the average navigation app is used six times per week.

Farago compares navigation apps to a valuable tool – like a hammer – that you really need but don’t use very often. “You’re going to hang on to it but not use it very often. That averages out in giving you decent repeat useage but the frequency of use doesn’t help you build a total sustainable audience that you can advertise against,” he said. […]

He said broadly speaking developers need to give consumers the minimum amount possible to get them to maximum happiness – and then take it away. “The way I think of it is have enough of a ‘wow’ factor right away in the first 30 to 60 seconds of the experience, but at the same time hold back on a couple of other very interesting things that the consumer would want,” he said. “If you have four killer features, you need to give them the one that really sets the hook and use the other three as a promise to reel them in.”

Although it varies from product to product, the overall conversion rate for apps is between 2-10%. The rate shows there are many who try but don’t buy apps – and also reflects the vast choice consumers have. The App Store has over 75,000 apps and the Android Market has over 20,000. “At end of day, consumers only have so much capacity or interest to use a certain number of applications,” said Farago.[…]