In short, Steve Jobs claims Flash drains the battery of mobile devices; it’s not very good for multi-touch operation; and its performance, reliability and security are all shoddy.
The CEO of Apple concludes that Flash is a relic: “Flash was created during the PC era –- for PCs and mice,” he says, “but the mobile era is about low power devices, touch interfaces and open web standards –- all areas where Flash falls short.”
But the main reason why Apple doesn't allow Flash on iPhones, iPods and iPads is that Jobs doesn't want a competitor.
Following the last post about the latest Facebook's attack to privacy, let me explain how to remove Facebook applications. I'm getting this text from ReadWriteWeb.com.
The process of doing so is simple.
After signing into Facebook, do the following:
Click on "Account" at the top-right of the screen.
Click "Application Settings"
Change the "Show" drop-down box to "Authorized." This will show all the applications you've ever given permission to.
In the resulting list, click the "X" button on the far right next to each app you want to remove to delete it.
On the pop-up box that appears, click "Remove" then click "Okay" on the next box confirming the app was deleted.
Repeat this process to remove all the apps you no longer use on a regular basis.
ReadWriteWeb explains that "doing this won't eliminate risk entirely - nothing can do that - but it's a good first step in reducing risk. However, as long as you have a Facebook account, your data won't be private. If true privacy is really a concern for you, it may be time to find that account delete button instead. (Hint: it's under "Account Settings.")"
At Facebook's last week f8 conference, founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg (in the picture) announced that the company is removing restrictions on user data retention within Facebook applications. Previously, Facebook had a policy where developers couldn't store and cache any data for more than 24 hours. Therefore, apps had to constantly connect to Facebook's server in order to refresh their data. Not anymore.
The change is good for developers, but it is a terrible news for the privacy of users.
The new policy brings to light another thing user does not know: Facebook application access your personal data, that is, almost everything which is on a user profile, including hometown, groups you belong to, events attended, favorite books, and more. In other words, your Facebook profile information becomes available to developers.
The indefinite storage makes Facebook apps "far more valuable targets for attackers". Just imagine, for instance, the payload for hackers targeting Farmville, Facebook's most popular app, with 81 million users. With 500,000 supported applications, Facebook doesn't have the resources to police the apps they house. Overall, Facebook touts 400 million users.
Respected online news service ReadWriteWeb.com says "to the end user, these changes may sound overwhelming and even scary". "But there is something very easy everyone can to minimize their risk and that's delete the Facebook application you no longer use."
Definitely the iPad -with nearly a million units sold in three weeks- is going to change the way that users consume video. And Steve Jobs' new device will be a winner.
MeFeedia has released a report showing that iPad users consume three times as many videos as web user, and watch video on the device four times longer. It means that they're using it for video even more than originally thought.
In my view, the iPad is truly the first personal television device.
ReadWriteWeb magazine highlights four classes of mobile apps that have become popular in 2010:
Internet of Things
Augmented Reality (AR, in the picture above)
Mobile Social Networking
In Geo-location using mobile service Foursquare as an example has become the hot new status message type online. "Where you are" is an added value to "who you know" Facebook-style social networking sites.
The Internet of Things trend is about including barcode scanning on your phone, using it as an RFID tag and reader, and using it a proximity sensor. The iPhone has a built-in accelerometer, which is basically a motion detector. This is used for re-sizing the display from portrait to landscape and for game control. The iPhone's microphone can se used as a noise sensor, a proximity sensor, and an ambient light sensor.
Augmented Reality offers a new marketing and product paradigm for a high impact and high value customer experience. More than 1,000 campaigns were kicked-off last year. There iPhone apps are Junaio, Layar and Wiktude.
Mobile Social Networking is "a do-anywhere activity" and now it's been unchained from the PC. More people are using the mobile web to socialize, either it is posting comments, connecting with friends, sharing content o photos with others. It does not require people make time for it; it captures people's attention whenever they have free time.
The battle between Adobe's Flash technology versus iPhone / iPad's Safari browser is yet to be won.
It is not just that Apple pushes HTML5 as a replacement for much of the functionality in Flash and its almost ubiquitous presence on desktop PCs. It is that, in terms of innovation, it's hard to bet against the next version of HTML.
My bet: HTML5 is the winner. We need to start building websites based on HTML5 and getting rid of Flash. Sorry, Adobe, sorry flash designers.
Some clients ask us: should I build a native mobile phone app, or should I build a cross-platform browser-based mobile service?
The choices include iPhone, Android, RIM, Palm, Windows Mobile and Symbian.
It is estimated that today there are 326,000 Mobile Web sites, compared to 148,000 iPhone apps and 24,000 Android apps.
Experts forecast that the browser-based mobile web market to grow much faster than the app market.
In February, mobile search company Taptu released a report showing that the future of the Mobile Touch Web is likely to be dominated by cross-platform browser-based mobile web sites - rather than apps built specifically for iPhone, Android, or any other platform.
The age where people access the World Wide Web using standard or similarly formatted PCs and browsers is ending. Witness the rise of proprietary platforms like Apple's iPhone / iPad, Amazon's Kindle, Google's Android, and soon Web-connected TVs with their own interactive formats. There are social sites like Facebook and LinkedIn, with content behind a password.
Two analysts of Forrester say that "we are now living in the era of Splitnternet."
"The standardized Web established links, click-throughs, and analytics, which in turn gave rise to now mainstream interactive marketing tools like online advertising, search marketing ads, and e-mail marketing," they say.
The era of the unified Web is gone, and online marketing and advertising might have no choice but to start from scratch.
"There is an escalating, accelerating and exponentially growing paradigm shift in information technology," said at the NAB Show revolutionary inventor and futurist Ray Kurzweil.
In an amazing conference, Kurzweil went to describe the exponential growth of knowledge and its resulting technological developments, and how this trend has resulted in more communication opportunities, extended health and better lives for everyone.
"It's all about understanding the tools to which we have so quickly become accustomed. The telephone took 50 years to become adopted by a quarter of the population, but the cell phone did that in seven years."
"Anybody can change the world. Ten years ago most people could not use search engines... but now that sounds like ancient history."
Among other future technologies, Kurzweil painted a picture of the advent of nanotechnology, describing neural implants that could be distributed to billions of points in the brain to provide a full-immersion virtual reality incorporating all of the senses and an intimate connection to diverse forms of nonbiological intelligence. (See below the slide I captured)
Ray Kurzweil, described as "the restless genius" by the The Wall Street Journal and "the ultimate thinking machine" by Forbes, is also an entrepreneur, a best-selling author, and very friendly guy. After the conference, he spent time talking to everyone who approached him (including myseft). For me, he was the star of the NAB Show.
There is a very useful tip I want to share with followers of this blog who are also iPad users (or are planning to buy one). It will save you money and you will avoid the AT&T Internet plan.
Just use the regular Wi-Fi-connected iPad ($130 less than the 3G version). Then buy any one of the cell-devices that work as Wi-Fi hot spots, so you have the same connection you would have with the iPad 3G.
Personally I'm using the Verizon MiFi 2200 device (the same one I use with my laptop); it admits up to five Wi-Fi connections and it will re-route you to the Verizon 3G network.
From day 1, I've been ubiquitously online.
Other devices are the Palm Pre Plus or the Palm Pixi Plus. They are $30, buy you would add a phone and data plan (data plan is $30).
The next generation of HTML language for web page development and web-based applications (beyond HTML4 and XHTML) is here. HTML5 is going to dominate the web someday soon. The iPad early success (300,000 devices sold in the launching week-end) accelerates HTML5 popularity.
This future web standard allow programmers to build sophisticated web sites that behave more like downloaded applications.
HTML5 has many advantages:
It reduces reliance on proprietary plug-ins such as Adobe Flash and Microsoft Silverlight. It has built-in video.
It supports offline data storage: users can access web sites developed in it without being connected to the Internet.
Drag & drop functionality
Document editing (i.e. Google Docs)
Geolocation, that is, the ability to identify the real-world location of a connected computer
HTML5 does not require developers to build sites in a whole new way.
The most notable example is Google, which is using HTML5 for its mobile version of Gmail, that works both on Android and iPhone/iPad. This also allows Google to avoid Apple's approval process, since the application is accessed via the web, and the Apple App Store.
There are a bunch of start-ups specialized in low-cost creation of iPhone (and now iPad) apps.
That can be an alternative for businesses with neither the software engineering expertise nor the financial resources to hire a professional development firm.
Small business apps might cost $15-$30k. A developer can charge $125 to $175 per hour, or $5,000 a week. A complex program can go upwards of $100,000. Most of professionally managed apps cost between $25,000 and $50,000. That covers the user-interface design, functional architecture, quality assurance testing, adherence to Apple's Human Interface Guidelines (which can be critical for getting approval from Apple), submission to the store, and warranted bug fixing post-deployment.
The base level price for a from-scratch project is now about $20,000 due to the level of competition. Anything below that probably raises red flags.
In terms of timeline, the process can range from six weeks to six months. Add to that a two to three week approval process for Apple to review the app.
The new low-cost offerings enable anyone to go online and have an app ready in an hour by personalizing, customizing and adapting sophisticated templates.
We have examined the most important ones:
SwebApps. Its service costs $200 to $400, plus $25 per moth for hosting. All apps are installed on the iPhone operating system and run natively (meaning that it is approved by Apple and it is available on iTunes).
They have prefab templates, but users can personalize each app with customized buttons and background images as well as tools including Client Sign Up (to capture customer contact information).
Within 3 business days of submitting the app, SwebApps complete the development and contact the client with any concerns. Once all concerns are addressed, they submit to Apple. Apple then takes anywhere from 3-4 weeks to approve the app and upload to iTunes.
All non-profits organization may build their app for free, but they are charged the monthly hosting fee.
MyAppBuilder.com. Users submit their content to a control panel, and then the completed app is sent back to the client for review. After that, MyAppBuilder uploads the software to the App Store for Apple's approval. In addition to a $29 monthly subscription price, the firm charges a $20 processing fee to compile data, put it in the appropriate format, and submit to the App Store for review.
A sample of it is Founding Farmers, a restaurant in Washington, D.C. that has app buttons for food and wine menus, reservations, directions and feedback.
AppBreeder. Pricing fluctuates to whether the app is ad-supported (for $99 publishing it to the App Store), it's web-based ($9.95 to $14.95 per month) or whether it's native ($29.95 to $49.95 per month). Apps also can be extend to Android and BlackBerry smartphones.
AppMark. It costs $199 to publish your app. $499 if you publish it under your own brand. Phone based support is also available during the creation phase, at $120 an hour.
iSites. They promise to "take care of the app store submission in less than 24 hours." It works on both the iPhone and Android platforms. Cost: $25 per app; $99 per year if you choose to monetize by integrating with AdMob. Here you can see how the control panel works.
TapLynx. It offers more versatility than other aggregators, and it comes with the ability to embed video. It has been used by online news sources as All Things D and Variety. Cost: $599 for the enterprise package.
GameSalad.com. Its basic service costs $99 a year, while one with features such as customer support cost $2,000 a year. They say that "game makers of all levels can bring their ideas to life without programming a single line of code." It supports publishing and development for the new Apple iPad.
MEDL Mobile's AppIncubator.com is a mobile app that solicits ideas and then does the legwork designing and coding apps in exchange for a portion of the sales generated by the software.
Book-app maker eBookApp.com charges nothing to create apps that help authors and publishers promote books through the App Store but receives 50 % of sales of books sold through the apps.
Mobile Roadie. It allows to build and manage iPhone and Android apps (see video below). Cost: $499 set up and $29 per month.
Some experts believe that in a few years mobile apps will be to businesses what sites are today. They will serve as a product catalog, a shopping tool, a social-media resource, a way to gather client information, a media gallery -all on the go, at your customer's fingertips.
The number of apps downloaded through these kinds of stores may surge to 18.7 billion in 2014, according to consultant Ovum.
I believe that old and new media can coexist and benefit from each other. Growing audiences on big TV events (the Super Bowl among them) reinforce this idea. They seem to be stimulated by blogs and social media like Facebook and Twitter, enabling viewers to discuss together what they are watching separately.
The NYT explains that many marketers are turning to Web video along with television.
Some samples provided by the Times:
“The Next Round Served Up by Jim Beam,” a Web series for Jim Beam bourbon that ESPN plans to introduce on April 4. Although the webisodes will be on ESPN.com, excerpts will appear during the first commercial breaks on 11 p.m. episodes of “SportsCenter” on the ESPN cable channel.
The Bertolli unit of Unilever promoted “Into the Heart of Italy” — a Web series that began this week — with commercials on ABC. One spot ran during the Academy Awards broadcast on March 7 and a second appeared in an episode of “Desperate Housewives.”
American Express and Constellation Brands team up for “Pairings,” a Web series about food, wine and music that went live on Thursday, its creator, GreenLight Media and Marketing, is considering proposing a series based on the webisodes to a cable television channel.
It turns out that there's a synergy and not cannibalization. All is part of an integrated communications program.
The bad guys are getting better and better, and when even Google falls victim to hackers, it's clear that we are facing a very serious problem. A growing number of hackers, criminals and spies are breaking into the computer systems of thousands of companies, government agencies, and organizations, although almost no one report intrusions.
Here is the reality: 85 percent of companies surveyed by Ponemon Institute research firm, have suffered security breaches and data losses over the previous year -roughly one-quarter of which involved hackers. The losses are over $1 trillion per year.
Judging beyond a marketing viral level, The Story of Bottle Water is a must-watch short film. It is also a very powerful public campaign.
Leonard first became known in the U.s. thanks to The Story of Stuff, a 20-minute short film that took on the American way of life and the consumerism that drives people towards environmentally destructive behavior.
In a move against common enemy Apple, which does not permit the Flash player on its iPad, iPhone and iPod touch devices, Adobe and Google have announced they will integrate the Flash player plugin into Chrome web browser, meaning that users won’t have to install anything.
Social media marketing tools need to be handled by professional communicators, and since there is a strong demand at the hiring end for candidates, several top business schools are incorporating courses on social networks.
These include Harvard Business Schools, London Business School, Insead, the international business school based in Fontainebleau, and the École des Hautes Études Commerciales (H.E.C.) in Paris, according to The New York Times.
These business schools teach how to build marketing strategieswithin social networks and how to track their effectiveness.
In general, classes are a combination of case studies, guest lectures, and team discussions.
"Now that businesses are realizing the commercial potential of these social media networks, the universities need to teach their students how to turn their knowledge of these new media channels to profitable use," says an expert.
Talking about universities, last week I gave a lecture in the Complutense University in Madrid, Spain, about Internet television and social media explaining how our company performs in this landscape. Here is my power point presentation.
The list ranges from CNN to Virgin American to Major League Baseball to TED.com.
On the same page, Apple is encouraging sites to submit for inclusion on the list.
There is also an accompanying link with details to make your site compatible, which includes tips on how to simulate iPad HTTP requests on your desktop, modifying your CSS code, and preparing for a touch screen interface.
Since the iPad (to be launched this Saturday 3) does not support Adobe Flash, there are two choices. You will need either build a native iPad/Phone application or, easier, build an HTML5-friendly video site.
Either way, you will need to re-encode existing video assets to support H.264 streaming and Apple’s multi-bit rate streaming technology.
Using this technology, the stream adapts to network conditions, scaling up and down based on the amount of bandwidth available.
Encoding videos in the H.264 format should be into at least three different bit rates.
Since iPad videos are streamed via HTTP, they can be delivered from any commodity web server, without needing a specialized streaming server. Apple’s HTTP-based adaptive bit-rate streaming technology allows it.
I found an interesting study from an Internet marketing company in San Diego, called Engine Ready, about the conversion rate -that is, the number of shoppers that turn from browsers to buyers.
It states that conversion rate from paid (or sponsored) links on search engines is 2.03% versus 1.26% from organic (or unpaid) links.
What's more, those who clicked through a paid links spent on average $11 more than the second group. Why? Because when you are ready to buy, naturally you tend to click more on ads.
This conclusion brings to the table the importance of the Search engine marketing (SEM), popularly referred as pay-per-click, or paid placement on search engine results. (Meanwhile, SEO stands for search engine optimization, a process that seeks to boost a site's traffic by helping it rise within unpaid search results.)
And since SEM can be expensive (especially if choose broader keywords and phrases) here you are some tips to launch your DIY SEM campaign:
Pick focused and relevant keywords after seeing what customers search.
Use keyword tools like Google's Suggestion and Google Trends tools to get data on popular and seasonal keywords. SEMRush provides a list that other advertisers might be bidding on. EBay Pulse can help to identify keywords and phrases that shoppers use.
Run tests and monitor your results. Check out various analytics programs such as Google Analytics and Yahoo Web Analytics.
Write compelling pay-per-click ads that gets to the point quickly and encourage people to click over. Consider including inducements such as discount offers, promotions and free shipping deals.
it is best to pick highly relevant keywords targeting only certain prospective customers. Filter out undesirable clicks trying to be more exclusive than inclusive.
Landing page must match up with keywords on the ads. Avoid directing people to general merchandise page; that is source of frustration for shoppers.
Watch out Google's quality score. This is a measurement that Google and other search engines use to determine the order of paid links, and is based on how relevant your keywords are to search queries, the number of times someone clicks on your company's links and the quality of your landing page. It is kind of Google's credit rating. Therefore, you need to align your keywords to your company's products.