Thursday, April 30, 2009

Google begins tracking swine flu in Mexico

Experimental project may not be accurate but tries for real-time picture of flu's spread.

Google Inc. is running an experiment of sorts to follow the swine flu's path through Mexico.

The company is trying to compile information from swine flu-related Google searches in Mexico to map out how the disease is spreading through the country.

The Mexican effort is based on Google Flu Trends, which the company launched last November in the U.S. At the time, Google officials said that they had found a connection between people searching for flu information and the number of people who actually have the flu in any given area. "Google Flu Trends may be able to detect influenza outbreaks earlier than other systems because it estimates flu activity in near real time," said Jeremy Ginsberg, one of the engineers on the Google Flu Trends project, during a press conference today.

Ginsberg acknowledged that the new effort, dubbed "Experimental Flu Trends for Mexico," may produce somewhat faulty data because of the lack of available current information from the Mexican government.

"While we would prefer to validate this data and improve its accuracy, we decided to release an early version today so that it might help public health officials and concerned individuals get an up-to-date picture of the ongoing swine flu outbreak," said Ginsberg in a blog post that also went up today. "Our current estimates of flu activity in the U.S. are still generally low as would be expected given the relatively low confirmed swine flu case count. However, we'll be keeping an eye on the data to look for any spike in activity."

The swine flu has been spreading -- and spreading fear -- across the world in recent days.

Today, the World Health Organization (WHO) raised its pandemic alert from 4 to 5, the second-highest level. reported that Dr. Margaret Chan, the U.N. agency's director general, said the decision means that all countries should "immediately" activate pandemic preparedness plans.

Swine flu, a highly contagious respiratory disease, has a mortality rate of between 1% and 4%, according to the WHO. While initially spread into humans by contact with pigs, the virus then mutates and spreads from human to human.

As of 5 p.m. Eastern Time on Wednesday, The Washington Post was reporting that the U.S. had 91 confirmed cases of swine flu, and there have been 367 confirmed cases in Mexico and nearly 500 across the world.


Wednesday, April 29, 2009

New iPhone 3.0 OS Beta 4 Comes With iTunes 8.2 Pre-Release

In keeping with the release schedule they’ve established, Apple yesterday let loose new versions of its iPhone 3.0 OS and accompanying SDK. This time around, developers got another goody, in the form of an early pre-release of iTunes 8.2. The new version of iTunes is apparently required for activating the new iPhone OS beta, build 7A300g. As always, users must also install the latest iPhone SDK (build 9M2732) in order for the update to work properly.

The new iTunes pre-release is stealing the spotlight this time around, thanks to a mention in the “About iTunes” legalese of Blu-ray among other formats mentioned in conjunction with Gracenote, the software used to gather track information when CDs or other media are played back in Apple’s media jukebox app. Many are speculating that this could foretell the coming of the sometimes maligned video disc format to the Mac platform.

Before you get too excited, though, realize (as Gizmodo points out) that the same legal content in iTunes 8.1.1 (the current version) didn’t list DVD, so the inclusion of Blu-ray doesn’t necessarily indicate anything. Unless, of course, it indicates an upcoming ability to play back (folding DVD Player into iTunes and getting rid of the separate app) and/or import from both sources, in addition to CDs. Now that’s tantalizing.

On the iPhone side, there are some nice new features that I actually am really happy to finally see included. The “Store” menu that showed up in previous builds, but that didn’t actually have any content, now lets you sign in and out of your iTunes account, and view and change your account payment details and credit card information. The less dependent on iTunes the iPhone becomes, the better, in my opinion, and this virtually cuts the cord. Now we just need wireless syncing.


Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Do Iphone Apps Make Money

A common question many people ask us is - Do iPhone Apps make money. To answer this question, I did some googling:

ishoot - artilley game on iPhone - $800,000 in 5 months
Trism - simple game on iphone - $250,000 in 2 months
Koi Pond - game on iphone - $623,000 from 900,000 downloads

MLB App - $1 million -
Enigmo - $1.5 million in 8 months -

According to Flurry, iPhone applications can and do make money. Not all apps make it, of course, but those that do can actually make good money. A strong publisher with two titles a month can expect $10 million to $15 million in sales through the iPhone channel, if the titles are well-marketed, says the report.


Google Releases New Android 1.5 SDK

Google has released Android 1.5 SDK on schedule. The new development kit offers developers to write programs for the Android update soon in the first quarter of May in some locations. It brings in the ability to run Android Virtual Devices inside an emulator for better modeling of real devices and other improvements for performance issues to make development easier.

New Android 1.5 is the first version of the SDK that will support add-ons, which let the Android SDK to give you access to the external Android libraries. Among the actual changes to Android in 1.5 that end users will see later are an on-screen soft keyboard, widgets in the home screen for a music player, search and other features, stereo Bluetooth support; and video recording and playback.

Some of the features of new released SDK are:-

i)Multiple versions of the Android platform are included (Android 1.1, Android 1.5). The tools are updated to let you deploy your application on any platform in the SDK, which helps you ensure forward-compatibility and, if applicable, backward-compatibility.

ii) Introduces Android Virtual Devices — (AVD) configurations of options that you run in the emulator to better model actual devices. Each AVD gets its own dedicated storage area, making it much easier to work with multiple emulators that are running concurrently.

iii) Support for SDK add-ons, which extend the Android SDK to give you access to one or more external Android libraries and/or a customized (but compliant) system image that can run in the emulator.

iv) The new Eclipse ADT plugin (version 0.9.0) offers new Wizards to let you create projects targeted for specific Android configurations, generate XML resources (such as layouts, animations, and menus), generate alternate layouts, and export and sign your application for publishing.

v) Improved JUnit support in ADT .

vi) Easier profiling of performance .

vii) Easier management of localized applications. You can now include or exclude locale resources when building your APK from a single Android project.

viii) A new tool called "android" replaces the activity creator script.

ix) For details about the Android platforms included in the SDK — including bug fixes, features, and API changes — please read the Version Notes documents available at left. For a list of Android platforms included in this release, see the Download page.

Points to be noted
1. The Android 1.5 library and system image do not include the Maps external library ( However, the Maps external library is available as part of the Google APIs add-on for the Android SDK

2. USB Drivers for Windows the Windows version of the Android SDK includes these USB drivers that you can install, to let you develop on the device:

a) USB driver for 32-bit XP and Vista .
b) USB driver for 64-bit Vista only .

Installation and Upgrade Notes

To migrate to the new SDK from an older version, tools and documentation are provided to assist you in that. No changes to the source code of an existing application should be needed, provided that your application is not using Android internal structures or APIs. Once the migration is over compile it using the platform matching the application's original API Level, and run it against the most current platform.

The SDK now gives you the capability to compile an application against any one of several system targets. There are two types of targets:

i) Targets that represent core Android platform versions.
ii) Targets that are SDK add-ons, which typically provide application access to one or more external libraries and/or a customized (but compliant) system image that can run in the emulator.
iii) Android lets you discover what targets and AVDs are available to use.

Resolved Issues and other Changes

i) Updated documentation for

ii) WebView objects no longer automatically save thumbnails. The capturePicture() method will need to be called manually.

iii) If your application uses the Sensor API and you are running it in the emulator on the Android 1.5 system image, you may experience problems. Your application may generate ANR messages or crash when using the sensors. The problem is being investigated.

iv) Android 1.5 will not include support for the Zilog Z80 processor architecture.

The 1.5 update will be available to users of the G1 from T-Mobile USA shortly after the SDK release. So to conclude, while very little of this is important to the end user, it's great news for the Android platform as a whole

Monday, April 27, 2009

Facebook and the Afterweb

Two years ago Facebook changed the equation with myspace by opening the site to 3rd party developers to build app which would interact with it. This allowed an ecosystem to develop where 3rd party sites are using facebook to allow people to do everything from login with their facebook id to see feedback with facebook itself.

In a recent gamechanger announcement, facebook announcement that it was opening more of its core services to developers.

Early today, Facebook announced that it was opening up the "stream"-the real-time feed of members' status updates, Wall posts and such-to outside developers. Developers can now create new programs that mash-up and remix that core data, making it more useful and fun for members.


For more coverage on this:
- Techcrunch Live Facebook Stream
- Readwriteweb

Facebook: Breaking Point for Debates

The most important function of a social network is connecting people. Face book has become more than a networking site for young people to stay in touch. Started in 2004 by Harvard students who wanted to animate the black-and-white thumbnail photos of freshman directories, the site is the ninth most visited on the Internet, according to Nielsen/Net Ratings, and is used by nearly five million college students.
Because of its popularity, the site has become a flashpoint for debates about free speech, privacy and whether the Internet should be a tool for surveillance. It has gained importance by starting its communication thread through the comments option.
Face book has taken steps this year to expand its functionality by allowing outside developers to create applications that integrate with its pages. And now you can also add a Facebook Connect button to your site and blog. With this button you can login through your Facebook Account and can post comments on any site with this functionality.

To add this simple application, you need a website for which you control the code and have server access. In addition to this, you require the basic knowledge of JavaScript and HTML.

You can also check the Facebook Connect Plugin Directory, in case, if you use software like MovableType, WordPress, or Drupal. Along with this option, various plug-ins are also provided by independent developers. Several of them are available as open source as well. You can add, edit, and remove only the plugins you've created. When your plugin is available, you are free to edit any page and you can add a link and description to it.

There are various types of plug ins, like, WP-FB Connect WordPress Plugin. It adds login and commenting to your blog with Face Book Connect. This Plugin has a very basic start and proof of concept. It adds commenting to your blog via Facebook Connect like it was in

You can also use JS-Kit and Disqus if you are using third party tools for comments on your blog/site.

Report: Facebook to open up to developers

Facebook plans to announce at a developer event Monday that it will open up user-contributed information to third-party developers, according to a report Sunday in The Wall Street Journal.

The move would allow developers to build applications and services that--with users' permission--access user videos, photos, notes, and comments. The move would be a significant change for the social-networking site, which had previously retained tight control over the site and how developers interact with it.

To allow developers to take advantage of the free feature, Facebook users would have to give the companies access to their data, and users' privacy settings would extend to new services built, according to the report.

Allowing developers to track shared data would be another salvo in its assault on micro-blogging site Twitter, which allows third-party developers to build applications and services on top of its service.

The move seems a continuation of APIs (application programming interfaces) Facebook launched in February that let developers access content and methods for sharing in Facebook apps including Status, Notes, Links, and Video.

Of course, all this hinges on persuading Facebook's 200 million users to share their personal data, a topic that ruffled some feathers in February. Facebook users threatened to revolt after the company announced changes to its terms of service that had meant that its license on user content--a longstanding but little-publicized claim to an "irrevocable, perpetual, non-exclusive, transferable, fully paid, worldwide license" for promotional efforts--would no longer expire if a member deleted his or her Facebook account.

But facing a rebellion from thousands of users and a possible federal complaint from the Electronic Privacy Information Center, the social-networking service returned to its previous terms.

Read More

Friday, April 24, 2009

American Idol – The People's Show

Everyone is talking about the coming show of American Idol and feeding you with the information. The top ten finalists are set to go on a summer tour in the US. They will take the stage on a 50 city tour beginning 5th July in Oregon before heading to California, Texas, Oklahoma, Florida, New York and Pennsylvania - ending in New Hampshire in September.

The family living next door is planning on reserving few seats for them. The guy at office – the one who serves tea and cleans your messy desk – has already reserved few for them.

Now you are thinking about the show...!!! and you can't wait until tomorrow night to book a ticket for the upcoming season of the American Idol.

Tickets for all performances go on sale on Saturday, May 9. All the contestants are equally excited about the trip and are preparing hard to win the hearts of the audiences.

American Idol brings budding singers dreams to reality and provides a platform to the young Americans musical talent. The reality show is to bring the best undiscovered singer who has the ability to stand out and have spontaneity and confidence along with the singing skills. The new solo musical talent show is created and produced by Simon Fuller, founder of 19 Entertainment.

The prominent show is hosted by Ryan Seacrest. The judges include Paula Abdul, Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and recent addition Kara DioGuardi. The eight season of this iconic show started on January 13. The hunt to find the America's superstar is done jointly by the judges as well as the viewers. Every year tons of young aspirants from all across the nation give their audition to give a shot to stardom but not many get the chance to hit the main stage. Among all the contestants, top 7 performers are Adam, Allison, Anoop, Danny, Kris, Lil and Matt. Amongst all the candidates Adam Lambert is considered to be a performer with unbridled theatricality and manic energy, who is never dull. Although there is more fan following for Adam Lambert but there is tough competition amongst all the contestants and they have to go a long way to win the title.

But, whatever the outcome would be, we certainly are very proud of the show as well as the contestants for going through the daily grind. American Idol has raised criticism and debate, but also dreams and hope.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Secondmarket - An alternative to the IPO

A lot of our clients are startups companies where the founders and investors maybe facing liquidity issue as the IPO market has shut down. In this environment, it may make sense for investors to sell some stake in a private market but none has existed till date. One exists now!

The market for initial public offerings has dried up and companies are not being very acquisitive these days. In the first three months of 2009, only 56 companies were sold, half the number of a year ago, and none went public.

What if they had another option? SecondMarket, which operates markets for trading illiquid assets online, is creating a marketplace for trading shares of private companies. It puts investors together with shareholders and collects a fee, which will be 2 percent from each side for the private company market.

Pictures of our development Center in in Mohali

Some of our clients have wondered about our development center in India. What does it look like? Who are the people who work there? Below is a small slideshow which may help to satsify some of that curiosity.

SnapDat - iPhone App Review

When heading out to an event, one usually pack enough of his business cards to carry with . But if you want to avoid the trouble of carrying printing business cards, then SnapDat is a better option. SnapDat allows an individual to carry his digital business card in his iPhone.

SnapDat is a free “business card application” for the iPhone and iPod Touch, which provide users the ability to exchange contact data in the form of virtual business cards. Its the only mobile contact sharing application offering the common look and form of an actual business card.

With SnapDat, you can present yourself & your contact information in a manner that suits the moment. For creating a Personalized SnapDat Digital business card user can choose any of the 40 preloaded design templates. Insert the company logo and personalized with profile photos, and can embed a link of Twitter blog, LinkedIn, MySpace and Plaxo pages or a YouTube video.. User can defined multiple snap cards for different purposes(e.g. Work, social). So the next time you meet someone, simply launch, tap the SnapCard that’s appropriate & send!

With SnapDat you can share mobile contacts quickly and easily. SnapDat does not require users to be in the same room while exchanging info. Users can exchange contact information even if they’re not close to each other via Internet. You can “Snap” other SnapDat users directly via SnapID. Your SnapCard will be instantly added to the recipient’s SnapDirectory and iPhone Address Book.

And when a different user sends a SnapCard to you , then as soon as you receive a SnapCard, you can immediately add it to your phone’s native address book. You need only save the SnapCard, the data on the SnapCard becomes searchable in the SnapDirectory.

You can also include a message when exchanging SnapCards as well as add your own reminder notes to a received SnapCard.

You can also use GeoStamp Mapping feature to locate where & when you met someone .

SnapDat also incorporates powerful contact management features via the Snap Directory - - a sortable, searchable & dynamic view of all your SnapCards. Snap Directory supports both List & Thumbnail views. Select a card in the Snap Directory & it instantly becomes dynamic, allowing you to access phone, text message, email, maps & browser capabilities directly within SnapDat.

SnapDat is 100% free and you can grab it from

A-1 developers are best in industry to offer best and cost effective iPhone Apps developlment. So visit to get the best services.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Oracle buys Sun: understanding the impact on open source

Database giant Oracle announced Monday that it will buy Sun Microsystems for $9.50 per share—roughly $7.4 billion. The two companies reached an agreement after an unsuccessful bid by IBM fell short at $9.40 per share. Oracle has significantly expanded its reach over the past decade through a series of major acquisitions which include PeopleSoft, Hyperion, Siebel, and BEA. The addition of Sun to Oracle's roster will have far-reaching implications and a profound impact on the technology industry.

One area where the effects could be strongly felt is in the open source software community. Among Sun's most prized assets are some large-scale open source software projects that could see some major changes under their new ownership.


The acquisition raises serious questions about the future of MySQL, a popular open source database system that Sun acquired last year. It's not clear if Oracle will see any incentive to continuing development of an open source alternative to its core database offerings. There are several factors, however, that would make it difficult for Oracle to kill off MySQL—and it could be profitable to continue investing in the system's advancement.

MySQL is already somewhat fragmented and there are several branches and forks that deliver enough unique value to be profitable independently. This makes it seem unlikely that any one player will be able to retain centralized control of the software or unilaterally terminate its forward progress.

Another factor is the efficacy of certain alternatives—such as PostgreSQL—which existing MySQL users could choose to adopt if MySQL ever seriously stumbled. It's clear that there is a signficant market for open source database software, and it's a niche that someone will inevitably find a way to fill. This means that Oracle would gain little from killing off MySQL.

Read More

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Publisher on Iphone can make money a recent study indicates - lots of it

Yes, iPhone Apps Make Money
According to Flurry, iPhone applications can and do make money. Not all apps make it, of course, but those that do can actually make good money. A strong publisher with two titles a month can expect $10 million to $15 million in sales through the iPhone channel, if the titles are well-marketed, says the report.

But "well-marketed" is the key word here. The iPhone app industry is beginning to resemble the music industry with its "hit-driven" nature. One "hit" gets a developer on the map and gives them the chance to sell more apps. Successful apps often resemble successful songs: you need a good artist, a good producer, a strong distributor, and plenty of promotion.

Source: Readwrite - The State of the Smartweb

Atlassian Jira and Confluence - Stimulus Package - $5 only

Many of our customers and readers of our blogs are small business which could benefit from a Wiki Collaboration tool. Confluence which is a well regarded tool is offering a special 5 day offer for $5 per year license renewable for 3 years for a total of 5 users. This is a 5 day special and the proceed goes to a charity. For project manage purposes you can use Jira which also has the same offer.

If you want to know more about Atlassian Confluence / Jira:

- Atlassian Website
- Project Management with Jira

Source: Webworkerdaily

YouTube will showcase full-length movies and TV programs

From now YouTube will showcase full-length movies and mainstream TV episodes on its Web site. And Google, which owns YouTube has announced its partnership with premium movie studios like Sony, CBS, MGM, Lionsgate, Starz, and the BBC. YouTube had signed deals with Hollywood studios to showcase thousands of TV episodes as well as hundreds of movies on its video-sharing Web site.

For expanding its library of movies ,TV programs and launching a new advertising service and content partners,it also predicted partnerships with 13 smaller companies such as National Geographic, Discovery Communications Inc. and SnagFilms LLC. Also the movies will be ad-supported, and ad revenue will be shared with the content owners.

YouTube plans to redesign the site in order to implement the premium content section while keeping its main concern on user-generated clips. Like Hulu, Youtube also makes mind to showcase video ads inside of the movie stream. But this functionality of youtube is limited for US viewers only, others residing outside the US have to wait for premium content videos.

"We think the prime-time slot of the future is very much user-programmed,” Shiva Rajaraman, a senior product manager for YouTube, told reporters in a conference call . He said users could come home to a mixture of TV shows, music videos and amateur videos. Last time the site announced a joint venture with Universal Music Group to create Vevo, a separate destination for music videos.

During commercial breaks in TV shows, YouTube decided to sell advertising. YouTube being the most popular site may charge for the premium content. Premium content is the feature that will help both YouTube and the studios make money online, and if there's one thing studios like, it's making money. YouTube has taken a giant step in the right direction to figuring out how to monetize the site.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Amazon Kindle 2

When the Kindle came out a year ago, it was well received but was also criticized for not being good enough. The Kindle 2 released by Amazon a little while back appears to have fixed that.

- The Kindle have revolutionized reading and this Wall Street Journal article explains how

- Here is the definitive verdict on the Kindle from NYTIMES David Pogue

Is there anything which could pose a threat to the Kindle. Why the Iphone of course. And the Kindle App on the iPhone specifically. The NYTIMES Bits Blog disects the App.

And the computerworld reports that book sales on the Apple iPhone App seems to be skyrocketing
. Either way, Jeff Bezos comes out a winner.

And the future of newspaper - This businessweek article suggest that it would be cheaper for NYTIMES to give each subscriber a kindle and access the NYTIMES than to deliver a physiscal paper.

Monday, April 13, 2009

IPhone Changes Dynamics of Game Software Industry

Only a few years ago, bigger guns, badder enemies and louder explosives mattered most in video games.

Now, small is beautiful, and Apple Inc.'s iPhone is largely responsible.

The surprising emergence of the iPhone and its phone-less sibling, the iPod Touch, as hand-held game consoles has started to change the dynamics of the $40-billion game software industry. In addition to making titles for the iPhones, publishers are studying the thousands of games already available, figuring out what works and applying those lessons to more traditional games.

After years of building large, graphics-intensive blockbusters that come out every few years, developers are starting to make shorter, less expensive games that are released in more frequent installments. They're also making iPhone versions of major franchises that tie into the version for the console or computer.

According to a game developer of iPhone game company "The iPhone has changed everything,".

It's not just the device that's having an effect. It's also Apple's App Store, an online marketplace where users can browse through 25,000 software applications from thousands of publishers.

Many are games that take advantage of the multitouch screens, accelerometers and Web connections featured in the iPhone and iPod Touch. On a typical day, six to eight of the 10 bestselling apps are games.

One-third of all iPhone owners who use apps had downloaded Tap Tap Revenge by February, research firm ComScore said last week. That made the music game, which is free in some versions and $4.99 in others, the most-owned app. Twelve of the top 25 -- and five of the top 10 -- listed by ComScore are games.

After shoppers submit their credit card information once at Apple's online iTunes store, they can start buying apps through a computer or directly on their devices with a single click.

Since July, consumers have downloaded 800 million apps. Some are free, but many others cost 99 cents to $10 (Apple takes a 30% cut).

Video games that cost less than $10 are a big change. A typical title for a console or PC typically sells for $30 to $60. For hand-held games on Nintendo Co.'s DS, games cost $20 to $35.


Saturday, April 11, 2009

Apple Appstore nearing 1 Billion download

And so is nearly everything else. On Friday, Apple unveiled a Web page dedicated to tracking the number of downloads for the iPhone and iPod Touch until the company hits a billion downloads. Just four months ago, in January, the company announced it had surpassed 500,000 downloads.

War Between The Smartphones

The conversations are really heating up and turning into a somewhat religious debate, but regardless of where your beliefs lie, there is some fundamental truths about each platform. A battle is shaping up in the next few years to see who will dominate this new hand held device platform — who will attract the most users and third-party apps? So, here’s a quick snapshot of the strengths and weaknesses of the main combatants in the war for the handheld platform.

Strengths: Having defined this new class of handheld computers, Apple has a huge head start, with 30 million modern devices running a powerful and attractive operating system. That includes 17 million iPhones, plus Apple’s secret weapon: 13 million iPod Touches, which do almost all that an iPhone does, except connect to the cell phone networks.

It has an easy-to-use app store, which is now estimated to hold over 30,000 apps. The iPhone also offers wireless synchronization via MobileMe and Microsoft Exchange.

Weaknesses: Apple is susceptible to three radical obstacle. First, there are millions of people who prefer a physical keyboard, which the iPhone and Touch lack. Secondly, at least in the U.S., the iPhone is tied to a single carrier, AT&T, whose 3G network is still lousy in some major areas. Finally, while the iPhone’s $199 price has been good enough to make it a hit, people in a deep recession might respond better to a lower price, even if it was for a stripped-down lesser model.

Research in Motion
Strengths: The BlackBerry is an icon, with a large installed base estimated at over 50 million. The company has made progress in migrating the BlackBerry to consumers from corporate IT departments. It has a robust marketing campaign and is available from multiple carriers. Most models have physical keyboards.

Weaknesses: The new BlackBerry app platform leaves out much of the installed base; it only works on BlackBerry models introduced after the fall of 2006. RIM (RIMM) stumbled with its first touch-screen BlackBerry, the Storm.Its app store and apps are clumsier and less polished as compared to the iPhone’s. More importantly, the BlackBerry desperately needs a major user-interface overhaul.

Strengths: Android is a modern and powerful smart phone. It is different, but in the same class with, the iPhone OS. Its app store has an excellent wireless synchronization with Google’s calendar and contacts. Like Windows Mobile, it’s a horizontal product, which can be used on numerous handsets and even tablets or netbooks.

Weaknesses: The first Android phone, the T-Mobile G1, was clunky and didn’t set the world on fire. Handset makers can build Android phones that aren’t tied in to Google services, so it will be important to see how these variants fare. Another problem is that, as versions of Android diverge among handset makers and carriers, app developers may face a compatibility challenge.

Strengths: Windows Mobile has a large installed base, with many developers who created lots of apps for older versions of the software platform. Microsoft also plans an app store. The company has also launched a wireless synchronization service for consumers, called My Phone. Unlike Apple or RIM, Microsoft (MSFT) has a horizontal strategy, which places its platform on the hardware of numerous handset makers and carriers. The operating system can work with or without a physical keyboard.

Weaknesses: Windows Mobile is old. It is less powerful than the iPhone OS or Android, and has a user interface that needs a major redo. The company laughed off the iPhone phenomenon, and is now late in catching up. A minor new release is planned for this year, but Microsoft is racing to do a complete overhaul of Windows Mobile, called version 7. Unfortunately, that won’t be out till 2010. The new app store won’t work with current versions of Windows Mobile.

And, currently, Windows Mobile lacks a killer hardware device. The best Windows Mobile phones today are models from HTC that feature HTC’s own software, which works to hide as much of the hidebound Windows Mobile user interface as possible. It isn’t clear that apps built for the HTC user interface will work properly on regular Windows Mobile phones, and vice versa.

Strengths: With a slug of venture capital money, and the leadership of an ex-Apple exec, Palm has reinvented both, its software and hardware. The new Palm Pre and its new webOS, which will launch this spring, have impressed those who’ve seen them, and appear to have a real shot at competing with the iPhone and BlackBerry. The new platform is built for wireless synchronization and third-party developers, and, unlike the iPhone and some planned Android models; the Pre combines its touch screen features with a physical keyboard.

Weaknesses: Even if the phone and OS are hailed once reviewers test them, there are many business issues for Palm (PALM). The company is running on fumes, financially, and its launch carrier, Sprint, is hemorrhaging as well. That could make it tough to subsidize.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Start-up Aims to Challenge Microsoft, Skype, Google

Dutch start-up Perzonae Unified Communications is working on a service that will combine e-mail, instant messaging and, later, calls and teleconferencing on PCs and mobile phones. The first public beta is now available, it announced on Wednesday.

By combining all these methods of communicating, users will eventually no longer need existing tools and software such as Outlook, Thunderbird, MSN, Hotmail, Skype or Gmail, according to Chris Troost, marketing manager at Perzonae.

At the same the company is very much aware of the fact that it's just a small network, so it is looking to integrate with all the major networks for e-mail and instant messaging, according to Troost. Universal chat client Pidgin has been a big inspiration, he said.

What Perzonae hopes will set it apart from the competition is the ability to communicate more efficiently using a concept it calls zones. Users can, for example, create different zones for business or private communications. If users don't want to be disturbed by private messages or calls during work, they can shut off that zone and view the messages later on, according to Troost.

The public beta, version 0.6, will at first support just e-mail. Support for instant messaging will be added in about two weeks, Troost said. Perzonae will also support geolocation, so that contacts, with the user's permission, will be able to see where they are.

The company is planning to put out the first stable release, version 1.0, in approximately six months. It will include IP telephony, video and audio conferencing as well as desktop sharing, according to Perzonae's roll-out plan.

Support for unified communication integrating all three main means of communication, telephony, e-mail and instant messaging, is still uncommon in Internet based services, which leaves an opening for Perzonae if it can get there first. The enterprise space, on the other hand, is a virtual hornets nest with companies like Microsoft, Cisco Systems and Alcatel-Lucent competing for corporate dollars.

Currently, the Perzonae client runs on Windows XP. Soon there will be a version for Mac OS X, and there are also plans for Linux and Windows Vista clients.

By the time the first stable release comes to market, Perzonae also hopes to have a client ready for phones running Windows Mobile. It is also looking into support for other mobile platforms, including the iPhone, Symbian and Android.

With the arrival of the first stable release, Perzonae plans to start charging for its service. A basic subscription will cost about US$40 per year, and include e-mail and instant messaging. A professional subscription will cost from US$40, and then users will have to pay more as they add, for example, telephony, according to Troost.

Source: Pcworld

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Will the Iphone holds it own against the competition

In the face of the massive competition coming down the pipeline in the form of the Android, Palm Pre, Blackberry Storm and Windows Mobile Smartphone and of course Nokia etc...analyst are begining to wonder if the iPhone will be able to holds it own.

Some recent research indicates that it will:

* 9% said they are likely to buy a 32GB iPhone 3G ($299)
* 11% said they are likely to buy a 16GB iPhone 3G ($199)
* 8% said they are likely to buy the 8GB Traditional iPhone ($99)

Original Story from CNN

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Google Updates Gmail for iPhone and Android OS

Google updated its Mobile Gmail offerings today for both the iPhone and Android-based handsets. Improvements include faster performance when opening e-mail, navigating your Gmail folders, and searching archives, according to Google's official Mobile Blog. Google has also added a feature that assures you access to your locally stored Gmail account despite a possible intermittent network connection or none at all.

One chief improvement touted by Google is the ability to archive or delete multiple messages at a time. Using what Google calls a "floaty bar" that follows inside the active screen you can select multiple messages for one-click archiving or deleting.

On the cosmetic front, Google has given Gmail for iPhone and Android a mini-facelift, improving the look and ease of use of the application's buttons. This, Google says, allows the mobile version of Gmail to more closely mimic what you see on your desktop.

Google credits the improvements to Gmail for the iPhone and Android to new HTML5 and Gears technology that it says help it more aggressively cache data.

Courtesy : Pcworld

Monday, April 06, 2009

Google Android and the threat to Apple’s iPhone

The recent CTIA 2009 focused a lot on new App Stores and application development. This latest wireless event reminded us that the future of phones is all about applications and how the brands want to cash in on this area of business.

Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) App Store success gave the other brands a kick in the backside to play catch up, then at CTIA we heard about new app stores coming to life.

From BlackBerry App World to Samsung adding connected apps to TouchWiz, and Palm Pre developers invited to create applications to Verizon Wireless opening an App Store. Everyone wants to get into the mobile app business.

Apple showed everyone how it should be done, but how does it compare to the BlackBerry (RIMM) Mobile App World? The Apple iPhone is really just one phone that has made a lot of money out of applications with some help from iPod Touch users.

Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android is a threat to Apple’s iPhone, but how much of a threat is debatable, thanks to Apple having its foot well in the door with mobile apps. Although the Android operating system will be found on many phones and many brands.

This gives users more choice if they prefer a wide range of phones and great applications.

Who will win the biggest market share of the mobile application business? This is where the real battle is.


Friday, April 03, 2009

Ever wondered how popular the G1 is . Some facts presented by TMobile at CTIA

Ever wondered how popular the G1 is . Some facts presented by TMobile at CTIA

1. 80 percent of G1 owners browse the web daily.
2. Four out of five G1 owners download apps at least once a week from the Android. On average, T-Mobile G1 customers have each downloaded more than 40 applications from the Android Market.
3. An average G1 owner consumes 50 times the data of the average voice-centric phone user.
4. Among T-Mobile customers who have purchased the G1, roughly half have traded up from a basic handset.
5. The majority of T-Mobile G1 owners use Facebook and YouTube at least once a week.
6. Half of G1 customers also access Wi-Fi on a daily basis.

courtesy: Om Malik at Gigaom

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Remarkable entry of IBM into "Cloud Comuting"

Very soon IBM will be selling out a suite of Web-based collaboration software for the businesses. It will also be having contact management, instant messaging and file sharing programs; and it will the computing giant's biggest effort till date to sell out software as a service. Today the move that is going to be proclaimed rock bottom IBM Corp in opposition to companies which are by now established in the hatchling market for software as a service including: Microsoft, Google and privately held Zoho.

It is being said that $10 to $45 per user per month will be charged by IBM to the companies for its software suite. This software suite will be hosted at its own data centers; delivery will be via Web and will be available by April 7.

It has been said by the company’s Vice President that "What you are seeing are the beginnings of the whole IBM Company moving toward cloud computing".

Every body is curious to know what is this "Cloud computing"?

It is the latest buzz words in Silicon Valley. And it refers to various methods in which technology companies offer computing services over the Web from remote data centers, apparently from the cloud of the Internet.

Estimate of the Gartner Company is that the global market for cloud-based business software, computing services and storage will whole be about $10 billion this year and it will be merely a portion of the $223 billion which Gartner is projecting for the old-fashioned business software market alone.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Google Adsense Says Goodbye To Video Units Feature

Google AdSense is eliminating its video units feature, which allows publishers to show YouTube content and video ads on their pages. Google says that by the end of April, the feature will be fully eliminated for existing AdSense clients and that new clients of the revenue sharing ad program will no longer be given the option to place video ads on their pages through the program. Publishers can still display video content on their pages by pulling embed codes directly from YouTube.

Unsurprisingly, Google says it eliminated the video ads because of poor performance. It is difficult to figure out a sustainable ad model for video, which is why pre-rolls remain more common. But the problem with video ads may not be the ad unit itself but the underlying content. Brand advertisers don't want their names associated with random words spoken in videos. You simply cannot efficiently and consistently target ads based on three words in a video. For instance, if someone is watching a clip of "Snakes on a Plane," it's probably not the best place to put a travel ad. And search marketers can find better places to put contextual ads.

It seems this latest announcement is part of a growing trend of Google axing programs in AdSense.

Courtesy :