Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Today's Headlines

Asus Tablet Starting to Generate Sales
Business Insider
Honeycomb tablets are hitting the market at an accelerating pace. But initial estimates show that sales have been disappointing. The Asus Eee Pad Transformer appears to be the exception, however.  

The Rise of the Tablets
The Mercury News
Columnist Larry Magid writes about how it's easy to imagine how  retailers could use tablets to promote products -- tennis shoes to turnips. A clothing retailer could use it to help customers see if their size or favorite color is in stock or if its available or elsewhere.

iPad Is Not an E-Reader Killer
The debut of a lower-priced Nook from Barnes & Noble Inc. shows that there is a demand among consumers for a dedicated device intended solely for reading books. Contrary to the theories of some pundits, the popularity of Apple Inc.’s  iPad tablet hasn’t killed its e-reader rivals.

iPad Cures Adultery and May Be Mandatory for New IMF Chief
The Borowitz Report
In this satirical look at iPad fever, comedian Andy Borowitz writes, "A new scientific study released today says that iPad owners are less likely to commit adultery 'because they stop noticing other people altogether.'
According to the study, commissioned by Apple, Inc., iPad use disrupts what scientists agree are the necessary first stages of extramarital sex: 'noticing, admiring, and talking to other people.'"

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Today's Headline

Dust Is Culprit in Explosion at Factory That Manufactures iPads
The New York Times
An explosion that killed 3 workers and injured 15 others last week at a Chinese factory that supplies products to Apple was caused by combustible dust, according to a preliminary investigation by the local authorities.  The shutdown has created worries about supply disruptions for some Apple products, including the iPad, which experts say was being produced at the Chengdu facility.

World's Worst-Named Tablet Gets Rave Review
Many manufacturers have conceived different designs and brands of tablets.  Despite the many choices, the Archos 70 Tablet outdoes them all.  It’s one of the best tablets currently available, due to its high manufacturing quality and great features...

Touch This!  Not That!  New Nook E-Reader Features Touch Screen and Low Price
Barnes & Noble today unveiled a smaller, relatively inexpensive Nook e-reader. Like the original Nook, the $139 "Simple Touch Reader" has a black-and-white screen for reading books. Unlike it, though, it's got a touch screen.

New Nook (Part 2):  If You Like Buttons, You'll Hate the New Nook
Writer Peter Kafka's take:  it's geared for people who find the Kindle too complicated.

More Magazines Offering iPad Subscriptions
Two Conde Nast titles, Wired and GQ, are the latest to begin offering yearly subscriptions instead of just single issue sales. 

Monday, May 23, 2011

Today's Headlines

Barnes & Noble's Nook Lures Female Magazine Fans
The New York Times
The Nook Color has surprised publishers of women’s magazines like O, The Oprah Magazine, Cosmopolitan and Women’s Health by igniting strong sales that rival — and in some cases surpass — sales on the iPad. The success was not so easily predictable for a device that has been on the market only since November and faces stiff competition from Apple, Amazon and the Android-based tablets.

Consumers Use Tablets as TV Companion
Nielsen Company Blog
Seventy percent of tablet owners and 68 percent of smartphone owners said they use their devices while watching television, compared to only 35 percent of e-reader owners.  Sixty-one percent of e-reader owners use their device in bed, compared to 57 percent of tablet owners and 51 percent of smartphone owners.

Foxconn Factory Explosion May Hurt iPad Production
An explosion Friday ripped through Foxconn, the Taiwan-based  electronic components manufacturer,  killing three workers at its Chengdu factory.  The blast hit the production line for the iPad and may be shut down for a month. 

Intel Eyeing Tablet Market
Intel is looking to shake up the mobile chip market, and has unveiled plans to introduce ten tablet computers and Intel chips made specifically for tablets and smartphones.

HP Boasts that Its TouchPad Will Be More than the Number 1 Tablet
"In the tablet world, we're going to become better than number one. We call it number one plus,"
boasted  HP's European chief, Eric Cador during a press conference in Cannes over the weekend. 
So far, HP hasn't announced pricing or availability, but a report last week from blog Pre Central featured an alleged internal Wal-Mart document showing the 32 GB TouchPad selling for $599.  
An App That Turns Your iPad2 into a 3-D Display
Business Insider

Friday, May 20, 2011

Today's Headlines

Cheaper Nook May Be Announced May 24 by Barnes & Noble
Barnes & Noble plans to announce a new ereader, possibly a lower-end Nook to counter Amazon’s Kindle, next week.The bookstore chain has invited press to a May 24 event — this date coincides with information in an SEC filing regarding “the launch of a new ereader device.”

Bookmark This!  Barnes & Noble Receives $1 Billion Buyout Offer from Liberty Media
Business Insider
The move would put Liberty, which is mostly a cable and telecommunications company, into the rapidly growing digital book business.

Will HP's Touchpad Emerge as a Viable iPad Competitor?
Hewlett-Packard's TouchPad could emerge as a viable competitor to Apple's iPad tablet in a burgeoning market filled with disappointing competitors, industry analysts said this week.  The TouchPad, which is due for release in June, needs to be competitively priced and different on features from devices that include a slew of Android tablets and Research in Motion's PlayBook, analysts said.

Samsung Galaxy Tab to Receive Gingerbread Update
Top Computer Tablets
The upgrade allows Galaxy users will find that their devices have faster performance with lower CPU consumption. Their devices will also have better support for 3D graphics for an overall optimized gaming and media experience.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Today's Headlines

PlayBook Sales Playing Well at Retail
RBC* analyst Mike Abramsky estimates the company has sold about 250,000 PlayBooks since launching the device and is on track to sell as many as 500,000 in the first quarter, which would be stronger than early sales of the Motorola Xoom.

Galaxy Tab Ranks #1 Tablet According to Amazon Customers
In the customer review section, the following tablets got high marks (in order of consumer preference):  1.  Samsung Galaxy Tab; 2.  ASUS Eee 10-inch; 3. ASUS Eee 12-inch;  4.  Acer Iconia 10-inch; Motorola Xoom. 

Kindle E-Books Now Outselling Hard Copy Books at Amazon
Business Wire (press release)
From the press release:  "Today, less than four years after introducing Kindle books, customers are now purchasing more Kindle books than all print books – hardcover and paperback – combined...Since April 1, for every 100 print books has sold, it has sold 105 Kindle books."

Back Issues of Playboy Coming to the iPad
A web app containing all back issues of the famously controversial gentleman's magazine will finally be available on the iPad tomorrow, for a subscription price of $8 a month, of course

Android Tablet Sales to Exceed iPad Sales By the End of 2013
Speaking at the Reuters Technology Summit earlier this week, Nvidia boss Jen-Hsun Huang declared that Android tablets will overtake Apple’s iPad within 30 months.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Today's Headlines

Digital Newsstand Finally Ready for Its Close-Up
The Wall Street Journal
Next Issue Media, a consortium of five major publishers, expects to launch a preview of its product on Samsung's Galaxy Tab, with individual apps for seven magazines—Time, the New Yorker and Esquire among them—to be available in a dedicated magazine section of Verizon Wireless's VCAST app store.

Android Tablets Not Competitive with iPads Says Analyst
In the opinion of Jeffries analyst Peter Misek, Android tablets won’t come close to rivaling the iPad until their OS is more refined and their prices come down.

iPads Dominate Trade Show Focused on Musical Instruments and Audio Technology
The Mac Observer
Blogger Jochen Wolters observed that iPads in great abundance at the world's largest trade show for musical instruments and audio recording technology Musikmesse 2011.  He wrote noted that most developers of audio software and manufacturers of keyboards and mixers showed how to use an iPad to perform or produce music

Solid Review for Acer Iconia Tablet 
PDF Devices
Valli the reviewer writes:  "It has great features – Honeycomb, a 10.1 inch WXGA HD touchscreen display, 1GB RAM, 16GB storage, 1GHz NVIDIA dual core Tegra 2 processor, micro HDMI output, rear facing 5mp camera with autofocus and LED flash, front facing 2mp webcam, microSD support up to 32GB, USB 2.0 port, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, G-sensor, E-compass, L sensor, gyrometer, and 8 hours of battery life in video playback mode...Right now, this is your best bet in Honeycomb tabs." 

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Today's Headlines

iPads Getting Smart Drive
Seattle Times
Seagate announced yesterday an external hard drive for iPads and smartphones.
The palm-sized gadget has 500 gigabytes of storage capacity, a wireless radio to sync with mobile devices and a claimed five-hour battery life.

NY's Public Library Develops iPad App
The New York Times
Biblion: The Boundless Library” is the name for a series of apps available on Apple’s tablet computer that highlight different elements in the library’s collection. It was developed by the library and the design firm Potion.

Four More Magazines From Conde Nast Available for Subscribers on iPad
Allure, Glamour, Golf Digest and Vanity Fair will all offer yearly subscriptions for $19.99, and monthly subscriptions for $1.99. Individual issues can be purchased for $3.99 for Allure and Glamour, or $4.99 for Golf Digest and Vanity Fair. Existing print subscribers can enter their account information to get free access to iPad issues, too.

Glamour's Editor Reflects on the Early Days of iPad Editions
Among her observations:  A feature as simple as style suggestions for different body types, which features tap-to-switch before and after shots, often proves more popular than, say, an elaborate fashion shoot staged in Morocco.

E-Reading Consumers Tolerate Ads:  Amazons Ad-Supported Kindle Ranks #1
The ad-supported Kindle is Amazon's best seller.  It is $25 cheaper than the WiFi-only unsponsored version at $139, has taken first position on the online retailer’s list of bestselling electronics. The Kindle 3G retails for $189.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Today's Headlines

Ka-Ching!  Kindle-Generated Revenue for Amazon Estimated at $5 Billion in 2011
The research firm Caris and Company predicts that Kindle-generated revenue will top $5.4 billion in 2011.Sales of hardware and software are driving the huge numbers.  

The Wall Street Journal
Increasingly, publishers are charging premium prices for digital content, betting on a new breed of media consumer willing to pay for content on devices such as Apple Inc.'s iPad, and throwing in print at little or no additional cost.
Here's part of the statement RIM released to  "RIM determined that approximately one thousand BlackBerry PlayBook tablets (16 GB) were shipped with an OS build that may result in the devices being unable to properly load software upon initial set-up.The majority of the affected devices are still in the distribution channel and haven't reached customers. RIM is working to replace the affected devices."
Business Insider
The website Business Insider surveyed 855 people.  Twenty percent of those surveyed have two iPads in their home.  
Goldman Sachs analyst Bill Shope:  Our iPad forecast remains unchanged, though we have lowered our non-Apple tablet unit assumptions by 2.3 million units in 2011 and 2012,..Meanwhile, we have raised our forecast for Apple’s tablet market share to 66.4 percent in 2011 (64 percent prior) and 66.6 percent in 2012 (65 percent prior). Overall, we are expecting 57.7 million total tablets for 2011 and 78.0 million tablets for 2012, versus 60.1 million and 80.3 million previously.”

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Today's Headlines

Are Publishers Basically Giving Away Magazines for iPads?
The New York Times
Columnist David Carr quotes a source who believes that publishers are replicating a print model that is short on revenue from consumers and leaves the industry once again reliant on the whims of advertisers.

Bezos Hints at Development of Amazon Tablet
Consumer Reports
When asked about the possibility of Amazon launching a multipurpose tablet device, the company's president and CEO Jeff Bezos said to “stay tuned” on the company’s plans. In an interview at Consumer Reports' offices, Bezos also signaled that any such device, should it come, is more likely to supplement than to supplant the Kindle, which he calls Amazon’s “purpose-built e-reading device.”

Despite Clever Marketing Campaign, Skepticism Mounts for RIM Playbook
“Amateur hour is over.” That’s the phrase RIM uses to tout its Playbook tablet. But with doubts for the company’s prospects on the rise, that proclamation is becoming increasingly more ironic. To wit, the growing mound of analyst downgrades piling around the company like manure on a horse farm.

Movie Rentals Come to Motorola's Xoom Tablet
Yesterday Motorola announced that users of its Xoom tablets on Verizon will be the first to get the new Android 3.1 update and the first to be able to rent movies from the Android Market.

Adobe Plans to Become the App Middleman
Coinciding with the recent news that Conde Nast is the latest publisher to reach an agreement with Apple to offer subscription capabilities for its magazine apps, Adobe separately revealed a little bit more about how it actually helps facilitate those subs.  On Adobe's Digital Publishing blog, a Monday post notes that the company's Digital Publishing Suite provides the interface through which customers activate their subscriptions for the Conde apps.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Today's Headlines

Google's Movies Play Nicely on RIM's Playbook
According to columnist Matt Miller, "Movies rented through the new Google service stream perfectly in full screen on the RIM BlackBerry PlayBook through the web browser."  Rare praise for the RIM tablet. 

iPad 2 More Powerful Than Supercomputers from the 90s
The Wall Street Journal
An iPad 2 is as powerful as 1990s supercomputer, according to this WSJ blog.  A device you can hold in your hand and costs a few hundred euros/dollars/pounds can do the work that a Cray supercomputer. You have to love that Moore’s Law.

Christmas in May:  Google and Samsung Give Away 5,000 Tablet to Conference Attendees
Google got a lot of applause at its Google I/O conference, but the loudest came with the news that the company and Samsung are giving Samsung Galaxy 10.1 Android  to each of the attendees.

Report:  Queen Elizabeth Gets an iPad
Envious of Prince William and Harry's iPads, Queen Elizabeth has reportedly ordered up one of the tablet computers for herself.

HBO Tablet App Soars to #1 in iTune Ranking
HBO Co-President Eric Kessler revealed the HBO GO app is No. 1 in the iTunes store with 1 million downloads in its first week of release. The HBO GO app gives authenticated subscribers to the HBO cable service full, streaming, portable access to the HBO library from the latest movies to original shows.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Today's Headlines

iPad Subscriptions Now Offered by The New Yorker
The New York Times
Condé Nast, the publisher of The New Yorker, becomes the first major publisher to begin a subscription plan on the iPad for one of its magazines.  In the past, consumers need to download each issue individually.  Information about the consumer that stems from app store sales will be owned by Apple and may be shared with The New Yorker.

Apple Vs. Magazine Publishers:  Who Blinked?
Last week, Conde Nast and Hearst made to sell subscriptions through the iTunes store. Forbes media reporter Jeff Bercovici wonders what brought about the change and why Time Inc. -- which gives print subscribers access to the iPad edition — is still holding out on digital-only subscriptions.

FT Still Mulling iPad Subscriptions with Apple
With a month to go until publishers must either fall in with Apple’s new in-app purchasing terms or quit iOS in June, The Financial Times is not yet among the small early group to have consented to the new rules.

The Ten Best Apps for Your Nook Color
Business Insider
Although Barnes & Noble won't give you access to Google's Android  Market, is has still selected several excellent Android apps to transform your Nook into more than just an e-reader.
The launch last year of the iPad helped Apple surpass Google as the most valuable brand in the world, according to a study released over the weekend by brand consultancy Millward Brown.
The Huffington Post
Columnist Larry Magid believes Acer can offer a challenge to the iPad 2 because the tablet is priced about 10% cheaper. 
It's perfect for the BlackBerry loyalists and for  people who want a tablet primarily for mobile Web browsing from the conference room, couch, bedroom, and other places where you don’t have a full PC and don’t want to whip out a laptop.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Today's Headlines

Can Tablets Become More Advertiser-Friendly?
The New York Times
Media columnist David Carr wonders if advertisers should pay the same CPM to reach an audience on a tablet computer compared to a print edition of a magazine.

Violence Marks Sales of iPad 2 in China
PC World
 A day after the iPad 2 launched in China the Sanlitun retail Apple Store was forced to temporarily close on Saturday after an alleged conflict broke out between iPad 2 scalpers and Apple Store employees. Scalpers buy iPad 2 tablets and resell them for a higher price to different markets where the iPad 2 is out of stock or not yet available.

Scientists Developing Paper Phone; Is the Paper Tablet Next?
Canadian researchers have invented a a smartphone prototype which is paper-thin, flexible and has a low-powered e-ink touchscreen display (Amazon's Kindle also uses an e-Ink display). The phone can be rolled up to fit into your pocket.  Is a paper tablet next?

Microsoft Should Buy RIM to Compete with Apple
Globe and Mail
Microsoft and RIM share an irksome problem called Apple.  Both companies recently disappointed investors, in part because of this problem. Both companies are struggling because they can't innovate with the vitality of Steve Jobs and Co. And both companies are desperate for a solution.

Rundown of Week's Top iPad Cases
This week’s iPad case roundup features a number of elegant leather accessories—some with unique designs and great features that make them both beautiful and functional.

Fortune's Apple Story Missing on the Web -- But You Can Buy It From Amazon
Last week Fortune published a deep dive into Apple, then made sure that many people who would care about it couldn’t read it: The story was available in the magazine’s print and iPad editions, but not on the Web

Friday, May 6, 2011

Today's Headline

The Rise of Tablet Computers
The Los Angeles Times
The era ushered in last year by Apple's iPad has upended the personal computing world. Retailers and manufacturers think tablet sales will outpace laptop sales in the U.S. as early as next year.

A Moveable Video Feast:  Watching TV on Your iPad
The Wall Street Journal
Walt Mossberg's guide to watching traditional tv on an iPad.

Insults in Motion:  RIM Launches Ad Campaign for Playbook and Insults iPad Users
Business Insider
Headline in ad targeted at iPad aficionados:  "Amateur hour is over."

Long Lines Mark iPad 2 Debut in Beijing
The launch of the iPad 2 is likely to raise Apple’s share in the country’s tablet market, said Sun Peilin, an analyst with Beijing-based research firm, Analysys International. Apple already has snagged more than three fourths of the country’s tablet market.

The New Yorker Tabbed to Be First Conde Nast Publication Offered Via iTunes Subscripton
The New York Post
The New Yorker will become the first Conde Nast publication to be available via subscription on the iPad, and it will happen early next week, writes report Keith Kelly citing an unnamed source. 

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Today's Headlines

Amazon Reportedly Producing Tablet Computer
Taiwan-based notebook maker Quanta Computer has recently received OEM orders from Amazon for its reported tablet PC and the device will also receive full support from Taiwan-based electrophoretic display (EPD) maker E Ink Holdings (EIH) for supplying touch panel as well as providing its Fringe Field Switching (FFS) technology, according to sources from upstream component makers.

Writer Gary Marshall:  "Amazon understands what the iPad-a-likes don't: it's not about horsepower, or a pretty case, or cutting-edge anything. It's about delivering an experience that delights people, and having an enormous amount of stuff people can download to their shiny new toy.I can't wait to see what it does with a tablet."

In a letter sent to publishers April 29, MediaVest's Robin Steinberg, one of the most powerful media buyers in the business, says that MediaVest won’t unquestioningly accept advertising rates for its clients based on a circulation number that includes digital editions.

Editor Dave Wingrad:  "This is one incredible app for HBO subscribers on supported services. It works exactly as you think it should. The depth of programming is vast, and under the right conditions the picture is perfect."

PC Magazine
Includes ratings for apps like Flipboard, Zite and Atomix. 

Monday, May 2, 2011

Today's Headlines

HBO Go iPad App Is Free for Subscribers to the Pay-TV Service
iPad News Hub
The app allows users to watch more than 1,400 HBO Shows such as HBO original programming, hit movies, sports, comedy and more.And best of all, it's free to subscribers. 

Irish Company Develops Stylus for iPad
Business Insider
The Maglus, as the name might suggest, is a magnetic capacitive stylus that will mimic the touch of a finger on the iPad's screen. It tucks neatly out the way when not in use by attaching to the body of the iPad 2.

The Reasons Behind Why Android Tablets Tank But Android Smartphones Soar
PC World
One theory is that the iPad 2 is so obviously superior that no one -- not even a fandroid -- can resist the Apple tablet.  Another theory is they're waiting for the flood of promised Android tablets before they put down their $500 to $900.  (There are several more theories in the article.)

Subscriptions to Time Inc. Magazines Now Available in iTunes Store
The Wall Street Journal
Beginning today, subscribers to Sports Illustrated, Time and Fortune magazines will be able to access the iPad editions via the apps, which will be able to authenticate them as subscribers.

Shipment of Tablets to Be Affected by Component Shortages
The global supply chain for tablet PCs is expected to brace for acute shortage of parts and components, including memory chips, gyroscopes, capacitors, chip-resistors, cover glass and even bismaleimide-triazine (BT) resin, which will seriously affect shipments of iPad-like tablets, according to sources at Taiwan notebook makers.

Is Flash Relevant One Year After iPad Debut?
Writer Jason Perlow:  "I’m not convinced that Flash compatibility on our smartphone and tablet platforms, let alone on the desktop web is something that we really need to be concerned about going forward. Most of us seem to be getting along without it just fine."

E-Readering Devices Harming Publishing Industry According to Report
“The book publishing industry has entered a period of long-term decline because of the rising sales of e-book readers,” reads an April 28 research note from IHS iSuppli, which predicted a decrease in book revenue at a compound annual rate of three percent through 2014—a reversal from the period between 2005 and 2010, when revenue rose.