The Mobile Industry – Where Is It Heading?

January 20th, 2012 No comments

We all have mobile phones, some of us carry more than one. But going mobile is not only about making phone callson the go. With the birth of the iPhone, going mobile now means staying connected all the time.The competition between hardware manufacturesrs is a true blessing for customers. The mobile war between Android-based phones vs. iPhone (vs. Windows mobile in the near future) brought prices down, making smartphones a household item. Despite this war, mobile hardware manufacturers have been very successful - Apple being the best example, but other manufacturers such as Samsung and Motorola are making solid profits off of their mobile divisions.

But what about mobile carriers? On one hand, the smartphones opened new revenue streams for mobile carriers. Staying connected all the time requires a lot of data to go from and to your phone. Unlimited data packages are slowly becoming the norm, and the new frontier seems to be mobile broadband – now that we all have internet access from our phones, we will soon require broadband access. That’s another possible revenue stream for mobile operators, but it also means a large investment in infrastructure.

Additionally, the competition between mobile carriers can be quite a challenge. As far as hardware is concerned, not everyone has a smartphone yet, and as new models are coming out, consumers are likely to want to upgrade. As far as mobile carriers go, we have all already signed up with our preferred carrier. Attracting  customers is not a simple task, and the question is – is it all about the price? Price is certainly a strong selling point, but mobile carriers are becoming more and more creative.

One way of attracting customers is simplicity in mobile, as O2, the UK mobile carrier has been pushing. The idea is to make service plans simple and easy to understand. You can choose to use a data package, but only if you need one.

In South Korea, where users are accustomed to very fast and cheap internet connection, Korea Telecom is building a 4G wireless network that can be a differntial factor for mobile users desiring high speed Internet access. Other operators are partnering with content providers to offer various interesting media for consumption buy smartphone owners. Which model will prevail? That remains to be seen.

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Wag The Bird, Or How We Can Abuse Twitter To Create An Alternate Reality

July 17th, 2009 1 comment

TwitterTwitter made a lot of waves over the past few months. From a voyeuristic, “I’m eating”, “can’t sleep” kind of ‘lifestreamer’, it has become a news media sensation. Earlier on it was just early earthquake reports. But Twitter hit big with the Iran elections, leaving dust to most traditional news channels in terms of realtime coverage of event and popularity amongst readers . That’s one hell of a powerful medium.

Wag The Dog is a brilliant 1997 satire, starring some big names (de niro, Hoffman), about a U.S. president inventing a war to increase his chances to win the upcoming elections. The president’s staff calls in a famous Hollywood producer to create a non-existing war (see trailer below, it’s a great, smart, funny movie).
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tFeeder Now Faster, Hungrier, More Social And Mobile

July 16th, 2009 No comments

tFeeder - Fed By RSS, Ranked By TwitterWe’ve been working hard to add new functionality to tFeeder, the technology news aggregator that uses Twitter to rank stories. We have added several new key features, which makes tFeeder truly unique in terms of usefulness. We have added more server power to handle many more blogs. We added a mobile version so that you could tFeed whenever you feel like it. We improved our algorithms to make tFeeder identify hot stories even faster than before. And we made tFeeder much more friendly with Google Friend Connect.
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Stolen Twitter Documents

July 15th, 2009 No comments

tFeeder - Fed By RSS, Ranked By TwitterIt’s been a very busy technology news day, with Twitter’s stolen documents making most of the headlines (we reported the story earlier today). tFeeder, the realtime, Twitter-powered technology news aggregator, identified Techcrunch’s post on the subject as a Boiling story about 3 minutes after it was first posted by Michael Arrington .

  • Twitter has become tech bloggers favorite punchbag. Everyone’s badmouthing them, for good reasons. Techcrunch were first to break the story, having received stolen Twitter documents from the alleged hacker. They are now in negotiation with Twitter lawyers about materials they are publishing. Other blogs and media outlets also received the docs, but TC promised they’ll publish some of those soon. Several docs are already published here and some financial forecast here.
  • Mahsable also got their hands on the Twitter documents, but chose not to publish any of them.  They published two stories on the Twitter documents, taking it straight at Twitter.
  • Security was the main topic of the day, as Firefox 3.5 (the browser I’m using) has a huge security hole in it. Mashable offers a workaround, and FF should release a patch soon. A great day for security companies.
  • Facebook is also having a great day – not only a competitor (Twitter) seems unreliable and vulnerable, FB added 50 million new users in the past 3 months. Impressive.

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A tFeeder First: Techcrunch Gets Hold Of Twitter Secret Docs

July 15th, 2009 No comments

TwitterWhile we were trying out the new mobile version of tFeeder (it was actually our first tFeeder news we got on our mobile), we discovered a BOILING story – Techcrunch got a hold of confidential documents from Twitter.
Appearently, Twitter was hacked a few months ago, and the hacker sent the documents to Techcrunch. Techcrunch Michael Arrington did this numerous times in the past – publish documents that other bloggers would not dare publish. He states in the post that he will release some of the documents.
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YouTube Declares IE6 Dead

July 14th, 2009 No comments

tFeeder - Fed By RSS, Ranked By TwitterToday’s hottest technology news, according to tFeeder:

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Facebook Employees Are Now Millionaires

July 13th, 2009 No comments

The latest, hottest technology news from tFeeder:

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RSS + Twitter = tFeeder

July 6th, 2009 No comments

tFeeder - Fed By RSS, Ranked By TwitterA few years ago, when technology blogs started becoming popular, I used to waste a lot of time visiting each blog, trying to find interesting technology stories. Then RSS became popular, and as most tech blogs started offering RSS subscription, much of the time spent on visiting each blog was reduced to a short, periodic visit to my RSS reader, looking for interesting technology stories.

But as time went by, I realized that RSS was not enough. Although it offers a simple way of accessing a large amount of content, it lacks one major feature – ranking. The RSS protocol was never meant to include any information in regards to the quality of each story. There were many other options to find hot stories (such as Digg), but in the past few months, there’s a new kid on the block – Twitter. And as most technology bloggers would agree – Twitter is becoming a powerful a recommendation engine, particularly useful for promoting interesting technology stories.

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Mashable Kindle Hickup, Techcrunch – Wired War Resumes?

June 17th, 2009 No comments

Techcrunch (Wall-E) Vs. Wired (R2D2), From FlickrI love reading technology blogs. Most stories on top tech blogs are insightful, but every now and then a blogger is caught off-guard and posts a Null post – a post about nothing. Null posts can be attributed to blog readers appetite for fresh,original information on one hand, and competition on the other, which creates a pressure to ‘publish or parish’. I will occasional write about the technology blogging industry, map the different players, and point different  trends as well as hiccups.

Mashabale gets all excited about…nothing

Mashable is one of the leading web 2.0 blogs, probably no. 2 after Techcrunch. Although these blogs title themselves as social media blogs, they post mostly about Twitter,Google,Microsoft,the iphone and sometimes the kindle – not all pure social media players.

Today Mashable writer Stan Schroeder does a very poor job being a tech blogger and writes about something that didn’t happen – his original post states that Amazon is releasing the Kindle’s source code. That is just not true, as he explains later in an update to the post.

That post is what I call a Null Post – you’re looking for something to write about, it’s early morning and you need to get those visitors coming, so you write about something without checking the facts.It can become embarrassing.

The funny thing is that I did the exact same mistake on my open source ERP blog – I reported that a certain software vendor released its product as open source, but it turned out that he didn’t – he just provided an easier access to the source – the source was available for free for a long time already. This type of mistakes tend to surface faster than you think! 

Techcrunch Vs. Wired

This have been going on for some time now – Techcrunch Michael Arrington taking it at Wired magazine. Techcrunch is my favorite technology blog, and about a month ago I got my hands (for the first time) on a printed Wired magazine, and I loved it (October 2008 issue).

The TC-Wired war started a couple of years ago, with Michael, in his own unique way, took a couple of low blows at Wired. You could tell there will be blood. Indeed, bloddy it became when Wired criticized the Washington Post for publishing technology news syndicated by Techcrunch.It became really dirty, and then it went into a coma, at least for  a while.

A couple of days ago Techrunch (Gears, which covers gadgets), posted this : Wired looks at junk that doesn’t work. Is Techcrunch wiping the dust off that old war? I sure hope so! I’ll keep you update, register to our RSS feed.

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Is Microsoft Spoofing Blog Visits To Generate Traffic Back To Bing?

June 16th, 2009 2 comments

I just checked my blogs’ stats ( I use the WordPress Firestat plugin ), and found a couple of very interesting ‘visits’ - visitors apparently coming from searches of  ’Twtitter’ and ‘Technology’ on search.live.com, which is Bing, Microsoft’s new search engine. That was somewhat suspicious – my blog is only about 2 weeks old. The chances of my blog appearing in top results for these two search terms is close to zero.

Here’s the screenshot of the two visits, who’s source are the keywords : ‘Twitter’ and ‘Technology’, from Bing search engine:

Visits from Bing to SolarOverPower Blog

I tried to find out who are the visitors who were referred to my blog from Bing. I was surprised to find that they came from within Microsoft Corp network!! ( I used MaxMind IP geocoding services to find details of IP address 65.55.165.102, which is one of the visitors’ IP).

See screenshot below:

Ip address of visit to my blog from within Microsoft Cop Network

 

As far as I’m concerned, there are two possibilities here:

1.A real person working for Microsoft searched Bing for ‘Twitter’ and ‘Technology’, and my blog appeared high enough in the search results, and that visitor click on my link from Bing.

2. A robot identified my site as a blog (perhaps as a technology blog), and generated a spoof visit, knowing I will look through my stats (what bloggers do several times a day), and then follow the link that apparently brought a visitor, thus generating a Bing hit. Spoofing this kind of visit is pretty simple (you can pragmatically generate an HTTP request and set HTTP_Referrer to whatever you want).  As a matter of fact, I get several such spoofed visit to all of my blogs, but I never got one from a major website.

Keep in mind that there are millions of bloggers out there checking their stats to see who visited their website and where did they come from. If you can get only half of them to click on a spoof visit to check the visits’ referrer, you can generate a considerable amount of traffic.

So which is it, a real visit or a spoof? You decide for yourselves, but just try to search on Bing for Twitter or technology and see if you get a result from this blog (Solar OverPower). It might be that Microsoft is loosing it.

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