I came across an interesting post a few days ago on how the Android operating system parallels (or even imitates) Windows. No, we’re not talking about from an interface perspective — but rather how the Android ecosystem is in a bit of mess, much like the Windows ecosystem and the complex relationships that Microsoft and Google have with hardware suppliers.
I’m not sure the parallel is entirely accurate — since with Windows, the hardware manufacturer is no providing a customized version of Windows (which is usually the hold up for delivering new Android versions — the hardware manufacturer needs to build their own UI into the updated Android version).
The article actually spends more time talking about Apple than about Windows — and how Apple is better at providing updates to their mobile software. The problem with Android however, isn’t so much with Google’s lack of updates (Google’s actually been pushing out updates on a fairly regular basis — although they never really like to provide dates or changelogs). The problem with Android is that the hardware manufacturers have been given so much flexibility (which the article does mention) with what they’re going to do with the OS. Personally, I’d rather stick with stock Android — but I doubt Android would’ve been able to gobble up market share without Google providing OEMs with the ability to customize Android to such an extent.
Today we’ve got a great guest post from David Sumner from twago. This article lists some tips and tricks on how to conduct a successful online marketing campaign through twitter, and tells you how to work around the 140 character limit of tweets. Thanks David for the great guest post!
A successful twitter marketing campaign in 140 characters?
Due to the large twittersphere population (approx. 200 million), and of the ability to enable instant communication, twitter has become an integral part of online marketing. However, the key to a successful and exciting online marketing campaign through twitter can be constrained by the 140 character limit posed by tweets. The key to success therefore lies with a number of tools and features which can aid your twitter marketing campaign regardless of the 140 character limit.
Creativity and expressiveness:
The goal of a tweet is to communicate interesting, unique content in the shortest way possible. However, it is vital that you can communicate important campaign information, offers, promotions etc to your customers on twitter without breaking the 140 character limit. So how can you do this?
Cogeco, a Canadian cable company, is attempting to sharpen the blunt instrument of TV advertising by providing demographic-based advertising to cable subscribers that can be split into different segments that can be shown to different audience. So while you might see one ad during a particular advertising time slot of a TV show, other people you know might be watching a completely different ad.
While this is probably a little creepy to most people, in that your cable company knows this much about you (although it should come as little surprise, given the amount of time and energy companies spend to learn how to get you to spend your money with them), this seems like a natural and necessary progression for TV advertising. TV ads are still the bread-and-butter for most companies that want to advertise, and they’re often wasting ad cash showing their ads to people who couldn’t care less about their products.
In many ways, this seems to be taking the contextual advertising that is standard fare on the web and moving it over to TV. Always interesting when you start to see what was once a ‘start-up’ ad space like the web start to influence the more mainstream ad spaces like TV.
So I’ve been using the Nexus One for just over a month now, and I’d thought I’d write down some quick thoughts about what I think of the device so far.
As far as the device itself goes, I’m extremely satisfied with it. The Android user interface is snappy on the Nexus One and the operating system itself is a huge improvement over Windows Mobile 6.5. But let’s not turn this into a review of the phone — that’s not really what I’ve been thinking about in terms of the Nexus One.
After using Windows Mobile for a good 4 and a half years, I’ve finally decided to call it quits. While part of me wanted to wait for the new Windows Phone 7 launch, it seemed that Windows Phone 7 was just too little, too late. So instead, I ordered a Google Nexus One last Thursday (which is currently en route to me here in Toronto). The Android user interface was what really sold me on the phone (see below for a short video of that interface — not created by me).
Thinking back, my original decision to go with Windows Mobile was largely based on interoperability — I run Windows at home and at the office, and I wanted a phone that would work seamlessly with my work and home machines. Funny enough however, my Windows Mobile phone ended up having pretty much zero interaction with any of my machines, except occasionally moving some music from my home computer to my phone.
The services I did end up interacting with the most on my mobile were almost all Google services — I use Gmail, Google Maps and Google search by default, and ended up using pretty much nothing made my Microsoft (I access my work email through Outlook Web Access on my phone, since my firm doesn’t support non-BlackBerry mobile devices here in Canada).
Engadget posted a bunch of info and analysis on Windows Mobile 7 yesterday (now called Windows Phone 7 Series — no more Windows Mobile), and the new OS looks pretty serious. It’s a complete minimalist, monochromatic departure from Windows Mobile 6.5 (which in my opinion is a very, very good thing).
Microsoft has desperately needed to reinvent themselves in the mobile marketplace, and it looks like this may be exactly the sort of dramatic change they needed (and hopefully indicates the direction they’re heading in).
While I’m not crazy about the inability to install apps not sanctioned by Microsoft inside their Marketplace, the visual appeal and improved user experience of this new OS may still be enough to win some folks back to the Microsoft mobile platform.
Here’s a video from Engadget showcasing the Windows Phone 7 Series and some of its features.
I was sitting on the subway last week (which is unusual for me, as I tend to avoid the subway at all costs), and during one of the brief moments where the train goes above ground, was sending a few emails. After giving myself a mental pat on the back for being so productive, I took a look around the subway car. Guess what everyone else was doing?
Exactly the same thing I was.
It was then that I had a sudden realization about productivity: while technology may enhance our productivity when compared to how productive we used to be without (or with a ‘lesser’) technology, I seldom think about how little my productivity actually increases compared to others.
I’ve been looking at the HTC HD2 for a few weeks now (unfortunately when I say looking at, I don’t mean live — I mean reading about) — and I have to say, HTC has put out one impressive device. One of the best features on this feature has to be the 3.5mm headphone jack (which was also present on the HD), but is sorely, sorely lacking on my HTC Diamond (which often means ordering cheap adapters from eBay, which break far too easily). In case you haven’t already come across the device, here it is:
I never really thought about using Google Voice, until I read this nifty little post on the Official Gmail Blog. I think some kind of integration between email and voicemail would be great, and I’d like to explore this a bit more when I get some time. Has anybody used Google Voice or any other email-voicemail integration? Anything that would allow me to hear my email while I drive would be especially cool.
According to Ari Balogh, Yahoo’s CTO, “I can guarantee you there will be some acquisitions, and we will do some stuff in-house.” Yahoo’s also not doing so hot financially. According to the article:
Yahoo’s profits are down, as are most search companies in the current economy. Yahoo earned $118 million in the first quarter of 2009, a drop of 13% year over year with sales totaling $1.58 billion.
While the article points out that Google has overtaken Yahoo as the destination of choice for people conducting web searches, one and a half billion dollars of sales still gives Yahoo quite a bit of weight in the search arena, right?
I’m not sure how a presence in the social networking sphere is going to help Yahoo at this point. While it may lend Yahoo some credibility in terms of social networking, there doesn’t seem to really be a real plan as to how that social networking presence is going to translate into increased profitability.