Archive

Technology

If you happen to read a newspaper today or for the next few, Samsung, is launching an ad campaign to somehow stop the line at Apple stores around the world from forming. Good luck with that. The newspaper ads is simply a shot of the two phones together with the tagline “It doesn’t take a genius” with a rundown of arguably superior features of the Galaxy S III compared to the features of the iPhone 5. Pretty clever, I guess.

Unfortunately, the leak on a few news sources before publication and Apple fanboys/girls have decided to fight back. With a few of their renditions. Pretty clever. I personally like the PSA anti-bully one below. Nothing makes it more serious than pointing out which tech company is the bully.

Samsung has a pretty clever ad campaign here. These ads are running in a few newspapers around the country. In my opinion, those who will probably view these ads will be people who are late adopters and may be thinking about purchasing their very first smart phones or purchasing one as a gift. Smart on Samsung, if they recognize this potential. But in reality too much negative feedback has been created with the ruling against Samsung in their copyright case with Apple.

Just move on and stay away from that whole debacle. Yes, any press is good press, but public opinion has already swayed in favor of Apple. It will take a much stronger push than a comparative ad between the Galaxy and the iPhone to change that. If your phone is really strong in features and supposedly leap years ahead than the iPhone, use the phone as your tool. Not words. Show off your phone in action. Create the desire.

is it Microsoft Surface? Or THE Microsoft Surface. How about Surface by Microsoft. At least it isn’t Microsoft Surface for Windows 8 RT. Oh, that’s the official title. Microsoft at it again.

The Pro is a product that serves no purpose other than a product that will be bought by stupid early adopters who mistake this as something better than a ultra book. I think the Pro is dead on arrival.

Microsoft has been getting a lot of flack for how everything and anything. Critics are giving bad reviews to a product that hasn’t come out yet. It doesn’t help that not even a third through the product presentation, the Surface crashes and has to be switched out for a fresh unit. It seems like that was planned or expected somehow. Regardless, the product isn’t ready. RELAX.

Regardless, I like the Surface. It’s a product that adds something fresh to the market. Android and IOS are the de-facto tablet operating system choices and I feel innovation has been stagnant from both ends. Surface probably will not succeed in the tablet market but it has a good chance of helping drive the future computing user experience.

Pricing has not been released, but if they try to match prices with Apple, Surface is going to have a really hard time competing with the iPad. I think price points for the Surface RT and Surface Pro should be, $349 and $749, respectively. Microsoft can afford to lose money for the sake of sales on this product. Microsoft may not be as dominant as they once were, but their cash resources are as abundant as before.

So Microsoft dropped a bombshell on the tech industry on Monday. A secretive, but well speculated and informed bombshell. The Surface is probably the most important product launch for Microsoft since the original Xbox.

This is not the first time that Microsoft has tried Tablet PCs. Their first effort were hardware driven products with patched on hand writing recognition features. Clunky devices that were more laptop than true tablets of today. Microsoft would have been more successful if the product was more integrated.

Make no bones about it, Microsoft is still all about the software. But for a company known for 3 decades as a software company, suddenly making hardware products is a big leap. Microsoft used to just license software and wait for hardware manufactures to create and innovate around their product. With this strategy, there was not an harmonious connection between hardware and software. Windows based PCs feel like clobbered messes. Junk software wth mix and match hardware. Microsoft is taking a stronger control with their overall product presentation. Their own software and hardware in a strong synergetic fit.

Microsoft has also been known to have one of the most confusing product segmentations in the tech industry. Windows 7 comes in 6 flavors with also 3 additional sub editions. Microsoft thankfully avoided that with the surface and Windows 8. 4 editions of Windows 8 and there are only two flavors of their tablet, Surface and Surface Pro. No more confusion and regrettable decisions at the computer store. You’re either a basic user who only wants the essentials or someone who knows their way around the computer and wants full power. This is a sign of the evolution at Microsoft.

No longer a broken company with a disjointed company culture, Microsoft now has a strong design and software language.  The future is strong for Microsoft and the technology industry as a whole. Competition is strong and innovations are coming. Android and iOS are at the top, but Windows Phone 8 is a strong product. Microsoft has answered the Mobile challenge and they are coming in strong.

Yes, I have crossed over to the darkside. Or the good side if you look at it another way. Why? I guess it was just time. I will miss my nokia e61i. Hopefully iPhone software 3.0 comes sooner rather than later cause I really want copy and paste. Anyway, i’ll have an update on a better keyboard sooner rather than later. Everything at school is crashing on Me, but I’ll definitely have something this week. See you in a couple of days.

ipodshuffle_image3_20090311

Totally took me by surprise. Just checking my RSS feeds and this popped up out of nowhere. New design, new features, same old Apple feel.

ipodshuffle_image2_20090311

The controls have been moved to the headphone to make the form factor much smaller than before. Also an interesting feature is Voice Over. It tells you what’s playing through some computerized voice with the ability to speak in 14 language. Wowzee.

ipodshuffle_image5_20090311

Check out Apple for the details.

‘Interesting, though, the citizens’ definition of “news.”‘ – Learmonth, Advertising Age

Media is a changing landscape. Everything is coming into the web. TV, Films, and Music will all one day be delivered on the internet. With that a cultural change is brewing. What is entertainment? Users are more inclined to view things that are not necessarily pushed down their throat. People are the ones in control of what they want to see, but negatives come with this freedom. CBS found out the hard way.

CBS has jumped the interactivity bandwagon and have given viewers a website all their own. In the spirit of digg.com, CBS has created a social news network website called CBSeyemobile.com. On the website, users upload pictures and videos that give a first hand account as the news happen. CBS is not the first TV network to invest in this strategy, CNN has prominently placed youtube videos and twitter messages in their live broadcast to expand their content.

CBS found a market that they could infiltrate with their brand name, and a pie got thrown into their face. They basically did not expect users to upload NSFW content on their website. Negative content like this can hurt the brand and the website technology.

Advertisers are not willing to put their name next to the service because of a negative image associated with it. But if CBSeyemobile.com were to control the content and have moderators find items that are news-worthy, would users feel less inclined to put their content on the website. It’s the double edge sword of creating a social news website when you’re depending on money streaming in from main street. You either lose business or you lose users, which is important. A balance has to be expressed inside the organization, and the true skin of CBSeyemobile will show.

Read the advertising age blog post here.

A couple of weeks has passed since the end of techcrunch50, a technology conference for startups and established tech companies looking to gain an audience for their innovative product or service. It was established by Michael Arrington, Jason Calacanis, and other very important people of technology last year as TechCrunch40. This year they added ten more companies to expand the menu for the hundreds in attendance.

I am still looking through the company list and watching the video presentations, all at techcrunch50.com, but a few have caught my eye. One really interesting company is Tonchidot. They are a company who offer a product called sekai camera. The other company that has me very interested is FitBit. They offer a device that collects data on your steps, calories burn/consumed, etc, which is then wirelessly transmitted to their website.

Tonchidot/Sekai Camera

Sekai Camera is interesting because it is touted as a “air tagging device”. Sort of like a virtual interface to the real world. The software, as seen from the video demos and picture, seems to be only iPhone compatible at this point. But the software utilizes the data/gps features of the iphone. Tags are created by users and are then sent to the companies servers. GPS location data is stored with the data and can be seen as tag information on the screen as the camera is pointed at or in the area of interest. Tags can be textual, video, etc.

From the video demo, it seems that other web services such as wikipedia or yelp are not yet implemented. Think of the possibility. You point the camera at the Eiffel Tower and a wikipedia notification pops up on the screen. Clicking it opens a browser or a snippet of information. Or make a tag of your favorite restaurant and write a overjoyed review or a glaring review of the establishment. No announcement on availability or price, but check it out at tonchidot.com

Fitbit.com

Fitbit.com is a web service that shows the necessary data and information on how active you have been or how lazy you truly are. The neat feature is the fitbit device that is used to collect all of this raw data.

The device uses an accelerometer to measure steps, calories, etc., which is then wirelessly uploaded to the website. The device can also be worn during your sleep, which then collects data of your sleeping pattern. The information can be of how long you slept and how many times you have woken up during the night.

The device is $99 pre-order, with the website being absolutely free for the forceable future. I could see a subscription model or pay as you go model for expert advice, extra features, etc. that would make the fitbit service more robust.

Also, a point of importance, is that this device is being marketed as a low-end device that takes care of the basic essential. I would like to see a more runner friendly device that would be more along the lines of the nike plus product set. GPS data can be stored for routes, amount of time spent running, miles ran, etc. which would be all great incentives for runners to pluck down, say, $179 or $199 for that model of the fitbit device.

Anyway, I am really salivating at the mouth for these products to hit market. Fitbit is looking at shipping the device around the christmas time, so this would be a great stalking stuffer or birthday present for the fitness minded or out of shape loved one.

Meanwhile, tonchidot is more of a mystery. I didn’t really see a availablity date for their product on their website or in the video demos. But they seem to have software almost ready to go, so it shouldnt be long before this product hits market, I believe, in Japan first and obviously the U.S.A. afterwards.