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Now that Apple has enjoyed some success with its App Store, smartphone manufacturers are starting to realize that having such a service is a worthwhile endeavor. An App Store with the right ingredients for success not only makes people want to buy the smartphone more than others, but it offers a new revenue-sharing opportunity that could become extremely lucrative. Perhaps that’s why Microsoft’s new store for Windows Mobile 7, called Skymarket, leaked today. And it’s also why Google announced late last week that it was planning on launching the Android Market to compete with Apple’s store.  Each and every company going after the mobile Web is trying to do what Apple has done with its own App Store. If nothing else, the App Store has shown that there really is a recipe for success in this space.  What is that recipe?  At this point, success in the Mobile App Store m... (more)

A Look At The Tesla S 17-inch Haptic Entertainment And Navigation System

Mike and I were the first journalists to ride in the new Tesla Model S sedan yesterday and we were captivated by the massive 17-inch touch screen (so was Gizmodo) featured in the center console of the car. Both Tesla CEO Elon Musk and chief designer Franz von Holzhausen didn’t say much about the on screen system, except that it does have touch capability, it is an “entertainment center” and that it is a prototype which is still undergoing changes and improvements (see what both Musk and von Holzhausen said in our video). Tesla says that 520 S Model all electric sedans have been reserved by customers in first week since it was announced. At that announcement, Tesla debuted the screen but it wasn’t much to look at (see right). Now it looks much better (Thanks to Nik_Nik for the picture above). Here’s what we know about the screen. Its a 17-inch LCD touch computer sc... (more)

The State Of The iPhone Is Strong — Very Strong

Of the major companies that announced their earnings yesterday, two of them, AT&T and Apple, beat Wall Street estimates largely thanks to a single product: The iPhone. We’re approaching the two year birthday of the device, and it still remains one of the hottest items out there. Ladies and gentleman, the state of the iPhone is strong. Yes, Apple actually sold less iPhones this quarter than the previous two quarters, but that was coming off of the always-hot holiday shopping quarter, and the one before that was when the iPhone 3G was still relatively new on the scene. All told, Apple has sold 21 million iPhones since its launch. Perhaps just a drop in the bucket compared to overall Nokia sales, but remember, Apple was not in the mobile business at all before 2007. And aside from just sales figures, in the past two years, it has revolutionized the industry. That is, ... (more)

New Evernote App For The iPhone OS 3.0

Evernote, the multi-platform application that allows users to remember every notable aspect of their lives, today announced the availability of a significant update to its application for iPhone and iPod touch: Evernote version 3.0. Taking full advantage of the latest iPhone OS 3.0 software update, the app has been redesigned and optimized for easier note creation, faster browsing and more intuitive search. Evernote lets iPhone users create notes, take snapshots, record audio memos, and search through any content created on their iPhone or iPod touch, desktop computer, or the Web, thanks to its cloud-based sync functionality. New in Evernote 3.0 Evernote 3.0 contains a number of major enhancements made possible by the latest iPhone software update. New features include: -- Full note list sync enables smooth browsing and quick filtering -- Map view plots notes on a m... (more)

Best Non-Holiday Quarter Revenue and Earnings in Apple History

Apple on Ulitzer Apple announced financial results for its fiscal 2009 third quarter ended June 27, 2009. The Company posted revenue of $8.34 billion and a net quarterly profit of $1.23 billion, or $1.35 per diluted share. These results compare to revenue of $7.46 billion and net quarterly profit of $1.07 billion, or $1.19 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 36.3 percent, up from 34.8 percent in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 44 percent of the quarter's revenue. In accordance with the subscription accounting treatment required by GAAP, the Company recognizes revenue and cost of goods sold for iPhone(TM) and Apple TV(R) over their estimated economic lives. Adjusting GAAP sales and product costs to eliminate the impact of subscription accounting, the corresponding non-GAAP measures* for the quarter are $9.74 billion of ... (more)

Mobile Application Stores: What's the Operator's Play

Mobile application uptake-it isn't only about iPhones.  Sure Apple's App Store now offers over 65,000 applications, and users have downloaded more than 1.5 billion iPhone and iPod touch applications in the 1st year since launch. But while getting a late start, other mobile application storefronts are trying to catch up.  In the 3 months since launch, RIM's BlackBerry App World has 2,000 applications ready for download. The Nokia Ovi Store is leveraging (and paying 70% revenue share to) the large Symbian developer community to create new applications for its user base. At the myTouch 3G launch, Google announced that there are more than 5,000 applications in the Android Marketplace. Recently joining the party is the LG Application Store, initially targeting markets in Asia.  But if mobile application uptake continues to center on smartphone application stores, how wi... (more)

INQ Launches 3G Social Mobiles with Twitter and iTunes Media Sync

Today INQ Mobile took the next step in its mission to bring easy-to-use mobile internet to the mass market with the launch of two new 3G Social Mobiles complete with internet-based Twitter and media sync capabilities. The new phones offer high-spec functionality without the hefty price tag – shaking up the market by giving operators a unique proposition – a 3G social mobile with the speed, usability and suite of applications capable of driving data usage in the mass market. The INQ Chat 3G is the company’s first qwerty-style phone, while the compact INQ Mini 3G expands the range and provides an entry-level social mobile ideal for the price-sensitive prepay market. They complement the award-winning INQ1. For the two new phones, Twitter joins the suite of communications applications that INQ has already woven into the heart of its social mobiles, which include Facebo... (more)

Blackberry 9630 Tour: Perfect for My Small Business Needs

I just upgraded my Verizon Blackberry World Edition to the BlackBerry Tour 9630. This note provides a few observations. I use my phone for business, so I need good clear always-on voice.  But my Blackberry is also my hand held office. I need a device that lets me rapidly draft and send e-mails, and I need always on connectivity to the many cloud computing services we have all grown to depend upon in this cloud driven age.  I need access to contact info from the cloud and need access to my office and home calendars.  I need access to work documents, spreadsheets and presentations as well. My previous phone, the older Blackberry 8830 World Edition, met most all the requirements I really needed met.  It was great at receiving and sending e-mail and had a keyboard that lets me fly when it comes to typing.   Browsing speeds on the Verizon World were acceptable.   I almos... (more)

AT&T U-verse Arrives in Greenville

Greenville residents now have a new choice for their television and communications services, powered by the most advanced technology. AT&T* today announced the launch of AT&T U-verse(SM) services in parts of Greenville and Asheville beginning Monday, August 10. AT&T U-verse TV, AT&T U-verse High Speed Internet and AT&T U-verse Voice are delivered over AT&T's advanced Internet Protocol (IP) network, and offer a new alternative to cable and an unmatched experience for customers. AT&T U-verse brings together your TV, broadband, home phone and wireless services -- all on one bill -- with unique features that provide a new level of integration, convenience and control. AT&T U-verse TV ranked "Highest in Customer Satisfaction in the South Region," according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2008 Residential Television Service Provider Satisfaction Study(SM). "Today's lau... (more)

Mobile Broadband: In Search of a Better Bundle

In a previous blog, I discussed ways in which mobile operators can offer win-win subscriber services that let users access the abundance of mobile internet applications while addressing the operator threat from services substitution and revenue-less traffic growth. One approach in mobile broadband is “the bundle” – mobile data service plans that provide a combination of on-deck and internet-based services. Fixed broadband providers have long offered “Triple Play” bundles of voice, video, and data. Some have added in mobile services for the so-called “Quad Play” (thus turning the original baseball analogy into a mixed metaphor!). But how effective has the bundle been for mobile operators?   The Basics: Many operators are offering “flat rate” mobile broadband plans, typically in tiered levels of maximum monthly fair usage policy (FUP). Plans from operators such as A... (more)

First Open Source 4G Mobile Cloud Platform

Cloud Computing Journal Funambol introduced the world's first open source 4G (fourth-generation) mobile cloud platform for device management and synchronization. The platform enables management of mobile devices, and synchronization of diverse mobile media, over WiMax and LTE with social networks, email systems and PCs. The company's software leverages the prevailing Open Mobile Alliance (OMA) standards for device management (DM) and data synchronization (DS). Funambol is working with some of the largest companies in the industry to deploy innovative 4G mobile cloud sync services over the coming months. "4G will usher in new mobile services, such as live video, videoconferencing and HD movies," said Fabrizio Capobianco, Funambol CEO. "As a result, 4G's increased bandwidth and sensitivity requires even more need for mobile device management and sync. It must be easy... (more)