Why can’t everybody just get along?

Around the turn of the century (and for a few years following), the mobile phone industry exploded. It seemed like every month there was a new company designing and manufacturing a new cell phone. Nokia, Sony, Siemens, Ericsson, Motorola, Kyocera, LG, Sharp, and on and on. Every company was striving to put something new and cool on the market and every month there were so many new phones coming out that supporting them all with software was basically impossible. “Back in the day” it was hectic and you had new phones arriving weekly (or boxes full of new phones each month). Organising the phones became a real challenge. The phone, the battery, the power cord… sometimes a cord to connect to the computer, it was a mess. Continue reading

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The Week in Mobile: Ep. 9 – NFC FTW

This week on TWiM we talk more NFC and it’s impact in personal monetary transfers. The New York Times starts down the path of charging for digital content while Richard Branson tries giving it away for free. Amazon brings their marketing and sales knowhow to Android — will they become the dominant Android marketplace? AT&T cuts of unauthorized tethered users from unlimited plans and TeleNav reveals some interesting stats on GPS usage. Continue reading

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Why aren’t App Stores designed to maximize revenue?

In the early days of app stores, before Apple launched its ‘App Store’ on iTunes, and before other OEMs jumped on the gravy train of content distribution, there were many independent websites selling content for mobile devices. First for Palm, then for other smartphones such as BlackBerry (bplay.com, handango.com, etc.) and Windows Mobile (handango.com, etc.). Carriers launched storefronts for their customers to purchase games, apps and ringtones from, and while it was complicated to distribute to the breadth of the market, one thing each store had in common was their ultimate goal: profitability (and the higher the better!). Continue reading

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The Week in Mobile: Ep. 8 – Is that a bubble busting?

This week on TWiM we discuss how mobile and social are influencing the way we communicate, generate and consume news and information in the wake of the Japan earthquake. Is $42 million a good investment in Rovio? Why would someone put that much money into a one-hit wonder and are there parallels to previous seemingly ridiculous investments in the late 90’s or to previous success stories of the past? Guerrilla marketing tactics are not just for small businesses as Apple upstaged SXSW by packing a temporary local store full of iPad 2s. And finally, RIM signs an exclusive deal with 7digital for music on the PlayBook and shows off some new features at SXSW — could we be seeing the PlayBook show up sooner than expected?

Pro podcast tip: listen at 2x speed if you find the hour too long! It’s still easy to follow along at that speed.

Subscribe to the feed (audio) or download the latest episode here: audio | video.


This week:

  1. Japan’s tragedy and how mobile alters the way we consume news and communicate
  2. Rovio’s $42 million investment (the argument ensues)
  3. Apple steals the SXSW thunder (and sells a ton of iPads)
  4. The Playbook visits Austin and Rob nominates “on the street Jeff” to launch instead of the co-CEO’s
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Fun iPhone Game of the Week: Tiny Wings

Since I play a lot of games on my iPhone and people ask me all the time for recommendations, I thought I’d occasionally post when I find a game that keeps me occupied for longer than usual. Many games I download and after 5 min I decide I’m done with them and others I play for longer but still don’t hold my interest. I’ll try to keep these recommendations to ones that I seem to get addicted to (even if briefly).

(Don’t worry, I’ll do games for other mobile platforms when I find them as well!)

This weekend my addiction is Tiny Wings:

You have always dreamed of flying – but your wings are tiny. Luckily the world is full of beautiful hills. Use the hills as jumps – slide down, flap your wings and fly! At least for a moment – until this annoying gravity brings you back down to earth. But the next hill is waiting for you already. Watch out for the night and fly as fast as you can. Otherwise flying will only be a dream once again.

It’s great one-button (or one-touch in this case) gameplay and does a great job of making you go “I can do better if I just try one more time…” — which is the mark of a great small game. It’s cheap @ $0.99 so give it a try. Oh…. and it dislodged Angry Birds atop the charts (at least for now).

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Mobile App Madness in Toronto

In my completely professional and ‘unbiased’ opinion, if you’ll be in Toronto at the end of March, you should check out the Mobile App Madness event. My opinion is obviously unbiased since I’m not speaking at it, and it’s not sponsored by my employer… oh wait, yes I am and yes it is! =) But still, it’s a good opportunity to come hear some expert opinion on the mobile space (and yes, I humbly include myself in that grouping) from Ipsos Reid, Sympatico, bitHeads and App Promo. More details below and many more on the site. Hit me up on Twitter (@thesuavehog) or comment below and I’ll answer any Q’s anyone has on the event. Should be fun!

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