Thursday, September 29, 2011

Today's Headlines

Tablet Strategy Done Right:  Sarah Rotman Epps on the Amazon Kindle Fire
The highly regarded tablet analyst on the September 28 Amazon announced about its tablet:  "Amazon will sell millions of tablets, and the rapidfire adoption of the Kindle Fire will give app developers a reason—finally—to develop Android tablet apps. Apple’s place as market leader is secure, but Amazon will be a strong number two, and we expect no other serious tablet competitors until Windows 8 tablets launch."

Amazon Goes  Up Against Apple with Tablet Announcement
USA Today
Fire boasts some eye-catching innovations, such as its Web browser. Dubbed Silk, Amazon claims it's an exceptionally speedy "split browser" engineered to take advantage of the backbone of the Internet by moving heavy-lifting computations to the cloud. It can also anticipate where a user is going to click next, by exploiting the same technology that helps offer its "customers who bought this also bought this" feature.

Roundup of Amazon Kindle Fire Articles
Editor Richi Jennings compiles a roundup of interesting blog postings about the Kindle Fire.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Today's Headlines

E-Retailers Discover That Tablet Users Buy Stuff
The Wall Street Journal
Tablets still account for only a small percentage of overall e-commerce, but they are punching above their weight. While the conversion rate—orders divided by total visits—is 3% for shoppers using a traditional PC, it is 4% or 5% for shoppers using tablets, says Sucharita Mulpuru, an analyst at Forrester Research.

7-Inch Tablet Coming from Toshiba
The smaller-screen version, which is due to ship in December, will come in 16GB and 32GB varieties, both featuring a 1280-pixel-by-800-pixel display, Android 3.2 and and a Tegra 2 processor.

What to Expect on the Amazon Kindle Fire Tablet
The Washington Post
A roundup of rumors and speculation about the size and capabilities of the new Amazon device that will be unveiled to the press today. 

RIM Takes Page from HP Playbook and Cuts Prices on Its PlayBook Tablet
In a move that may soon become cliche, Research In Motion (RIM) has announced a price reduction for their BlackBerry PlayBook. Several Canadian retailers are selling the 16GB devices for $399, the 32GB for $499 and the 64GB for $599 but if you shop around, the 16GB version has been seen for as as low as $249.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Today's Headlines

Down and Dirty in Down Under:  Apple Presses Samsung Tablet Ban in Australia
The Wall Street Journal
Apple is seeking a court injunction to prevent Samsung from selling its Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia starting Friday

When Amazon unveils its new iPad-like device on Wednesday, it will have the backing of at least three of the big magazine publishers: Hearst, Conde Nast and Meredith all have deals to sell digital versions of their titles on the new device, according to industry sources.  Time Inc. has not yet come to terms with Amazon. 
On Wednesday morning in New York City, Amazon will unveil the Kindle Fire. Yes, this is the name Amazon has settled on, to help differentiate the product from the e-ink Kindles, which will still be very much alive and for sale. And while Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos will show off the Fire on stage, it won’t be ready to ship until the second week of November, TechCrunch has learned. 

Mark your calendars.  The company may post results of what may be its best quarter ever helped by skyrocketing sales of tablets. 

Monday, September 26, 2011

Today's Headlines

Amazon's Tablet May Be Announced at Wednesday Press Event
The New York Times
Amazon has scheduled a news conference in Manhattan on Wednesday, and the speculation on technology blogs and among analysts is that the tablet will be unveiled. The Amazon tablet, analysts believe, will most likely sell for about $250, half the price of the basic iPad. Its screen will be seven inches as opposed to the iPad’s 10 inches.

Two New NookColors May Be Launched This Year
The Digital Reader
Sources tell The Digital Reader that B&N will keep the NookTouch at $139, and they will have the two NookColors at higher price points. The Encore and Acclaim tablets will be priced at  $249 and $349.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Today's Headlines

Gartner Analyst:  Challenges to iPad's Domination Will Be "Minimal"
Gartner's Carolina Milanesi:  "...Apple delivers a superior and unified user experience across its hardware, software and services. Unless competitors can respond with a similar approach, challenges to Apple’s position will be minimal."

Ken Burns's New Doc to Premiere on PBS iPad App
An early premiere of the first episode of the Ken Burns documentary “Prohibition” will be available on Friday, September 23 on the free PBS apps for the iPad and the iPhone.

Some Apple Retail Employees Can Now Borrow Loaner iPads
Apple this past week detailed plans to introduce an interesting new program that gives its retail employees a chance to "check out" iPads like they would a library book.

Review of World's First Tablet with Slide-Out Keyboard
Laptop Magazine
Reviewer Avram Piltch on the Aaa Eee Pad Slider:  "Typing on the physical keyboard was a mixed bag. Though we were able to type with greater accuracy and comfort than with a virtual keyboard, the keys are smaller than what you'll find on most netbooks"

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Today's Headlines

253 Million Tablets to Be Shipped by 2015
Computer Business Review
Tablet shipments will reach 253 million by 2016, nearly a five-fold increase from the 55.2 million tablets expected to reach the market in 2011, according to a new report by analyst firm Juniper Research.

Wisconsin Library Begins iPad Lending Program
History was made in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, on Wednesday, as the L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library became the first public library in the country to check out Apple iPads.

Library E-Books to Become Available to Kindle Owners
The New York Times
Amazon significantly increased the potential visibility of library e-books on Wednesday when it opened up its popular Kindle e-reader to these books for the first time.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Today's Headlines

iPads and iPhones Help Mobile Devices Dominate Airport Wireless
Not long ago, airport Wi-Fi connections were dominated by laptops, with only a small number of mobile phones hopping onto such networks. These days, though, tablets and smartphones make up more than half of such connections, according to new data released on Tuesday by Boingo Wireless.

Why RIM Won't Kill the PlayBook
Charles Arthur argues that Research in Motion can’t kill it, because that would mean killing the only outpost it presently has for which developers can code for QNX, the OS that is going to be the basis for its new phones from next year.

Windows 8 Developer Tablets Available on eBay for $3,500
Got $3,500 to burn? Love tablets? Curious about Windows 8? If your answer is yes to all three questions, you need to go to eBay  and buy the only Windows 8 tablet in existence, the Samsung developer preview model unveiled at Microsoft’s BUILD conference last week.

Picking the Best Android Tablet
What's better? The Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 or the Motorola Xoom?  PCWorld takes a hard look. 

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Today's Headlines

The Executives Behind Microsofts War Against the iPad
Windows 8 still a year away, but based on what the company showed at its Build conference last week, it looks like Microsoft and its hardware partners may have a significant opportunity of stopping the iPad  -- or at least providing the first alternative that actually has a chance.  So who's behind Microsoft's last-ditch effort to keep Windows on top of the world.

Target Discontinues 16GB 3G iPad 2's
According to stock on Target’s website, the store may be discontinuing some of its iPad 2’s, namely the 16GB 3G versions from Verizon and AT&T.

Yahoo to Launch Digital Newsstand for Publishers
Mediaweek (UK)
Yahoo is gearing up to launch an HTML 5-based system called Livestand for magazine publishers wanting to cut the costs of getting onto iPad and Android apps.

Motorola's New Tablet Spotted in Video
Editor Chris Ziegler:  "We’ve obtained exclusive footage this morning of a new Motorola tablet that looks to be a lot sleeker and thinner than the 10-inch Xoom that launched earlier this year; the slightly angled corners are reminiscent of the Photog 4G, so this looks to be a new design language the company is continuing to pursue."

Monday, September 19, 2011

Today's Headlines

Samsung Countersues Apple in Australia
TheWall Street Journal
Samsungwidened a sprawling global patent dispute with Apple Inc. by filing a countersuit in Australia, while also appealing a key ruling in Germany.The South Korean company said Saturday it has filed a lawsuit in Australia alleging Apple's iPhone and iPad 2 tablet violate a number of wireless-technology patents held by Samsung.

News Organizations Muscle Into E-Book Business
The New York Times
Book publishers have to contend with another group elbowing into their territory: news organizations. Swiftly and at little cost, newspapers, magazines and sites like The Huffington Post are hunting for revenue by publishing their own version of e-books, either using brand-new content or repurposing material that they may have given away free in the past.

Is Google Working on a News Reader App?
Demand for slick news aggregation services on mobile devices has not escaped Google’s attention. The company is planning its own mobile news reader application organized around social feeds that would compete with the likes of Flipboard, Zite, Pulse, and AOL’s Editions.

85% of Consumers Think of Apple When Considering a Tablet Purchase
 But that could change.  For every hard-core Apple fanatic, there’s a “Fandroid” that’s willing to throw a smug comment the other way.  If Apple rivals give consumers something more cool, more delicious and less expensive, more people just might bite.

Tablets Will Drive E-Commerce
E-tailers can strategically drive sales at their stores through the tablet and change the buying habits of consumers, argues writer Tim Bajarin. 

Friday, September 16, 2011

Today's Headlines

Sharp Decides to Decrease Tablet Production
The Wall Street Journal
In the latest sign of Apple's firm grip on the tablet-computer market, Sharp Corp. said it will scale back sales of its Galapagos tablet later this month by discontinuing two of three models less than a year after their launch.
The Playbook numbers are certainly disappointing, and there was no mention of sell-through, or the number of tablets actually sold to consumers or businesses as opposed to distribution partners.
The Goodereader
PlayBook sales are “well below what we’d like it to be” said co-chief executive officer Mike Lazaridis. A typical sales quarter is about ninety days and recently Apple announced it had shipped out 9.25 million iPads. This means that daily the Apple tablet was shipping out 102,000! So in two days the iPad shipped more then RIM got in the entire 90 day period.
The Wall Street Journal
Critic Walt Mossberg:  "I generally like it, despite some weaknesses and some features that aren’t yet fleshed out because they won’t be fully rolled out at launch. The Tablet S will appeal to buyers who would like a distinctive tablet from a trusted company that doesn’t look like an iPad wannabe."

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Today's Headlines

Review of New Tablet Aimed at Kiddies
The Wall Street Journal
Tech critic Katherine Boehert concludues:  "Though the LeapPad Explorer looks a bit chubby compared with regular tablets, its features will be adequate for kids. Its ability to grow over time with more downloaded apps makes it a smart investment for parents."

App that Scrutinizes Apple Disappears from App Store
The New York Times
Paolo Pedercini, a game designer and professor of art at Carnegie Mellon University, announced the availability of a 99-cent game for the iPhone that, in a cartoony way, critiqued the cost, both to the environment and to humanity, of producing mobile devices like the iPhone. It was not available for very long.

Microsoft Gives Away Samsung Windows 8 Tablets for Free
Looks like hundreds were given away in a frenzied scene, according to the AllThingsD video. 

The Great Tablet Give-Away Begins Today in Philadelphia
The Philadelphia Media Network—which owns The Inquirer, Daily News and—is offering a discounted tablet to the first 5,000 subscribers to its new Android apps. In a news conference on Monday, PMN CEO and publisher Greg Osberg called it the initiative as “the most ambitious paid-content initiative ever introduced in the United States.”

Intel Unveils First Google Android Tablet
Intel hauled out its first Android tablet running on "Medfield," an upcoming Atom chip for smartphones and tablets.  The Medfield Atom chip is one of Intel's most power-efficient chip designs--a strict requirement for tablets and smartphones. It contains a single processing core--as opposed to more power-hungry dual-core Atom chips used in Netbooks--and will be available in devices in the first half of 2012.
A tiny Singapore-based business has big ambitions for a tablet which aims to beat the iPad by looking different and costing less.Fusion Garage's Grid10 goes on sale in the UK next month, but if they are to succeed where others have failed its creators need to make plenty of noise to persuade consumers that this is not another "me-too" tablet. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Today's Headlines

Amazon Hunts for Tablet Content from Media Companies
The Wall Street Journal
As  its tablet launch draws near, Amazon is in the market for content. According to people familiar with the matter, the Seattle retailing giant is starting talks with magazine and newspaper publishers on new terms for subscriptions and single copies of periodicals for the device.

Two Million Amazon Tablets Could Be Sold in 2011
Barclays analyst Anthony DiClementethinks Amazon will sell 2 million 7-inch Android tablets this year. But he thinks that number will jump to 6.4 million in 2012, and that Amazon will also sell another 1.5 million units of a 10-inch model he predicts will show up next year. 
Amazon is offering publishers a lot of money for the rights to “wide swaths” of backlist e-books—with higher fees to come if and when frontlist titles are included—and that Amazon is seeking those rights on an exclusive basis, which would differentiate this from Amazon’s Instant Video offerings for Prime members.
The device will be available at AT&T stores and online starting Sunday for $479.99. Those who sign up for a two-year contract with AT&T, which includes a $35, 3GB monthly data plan, can nab the Iconia Tab A501 for $329.99.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Today's Headlines

Amazon Considering Netflix-Like E-Book Service
The Wall Street Journal
Amazon is talking with book publishers about launching a Netflix Inc.-like service for digital books, in which customers would pay an annual fee to access a library of content, according to people familiar with the matter.

Philadelphia Inquirer Tablet Experiment Set to Begin Sept. 13
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Although Philadelphia Media Network Inc.declined to provide details before a news conference Monday, they said last week that they would begin the "soft launch" Tuesday of a new digital product: a deeply discounted Android tablet loaded with discounted subscriptions to replica editions of The Inquirer and Daily News and a new multimedia Inquirer tablet app.

Microsoft Aims to Woo Tablet Software Developers
The Wall Street Journal
Microsoft, at an event in Anaheim, Calif., on Tuesday, plans to give software developers a detailed sales pitch for Windows 8, a new version of its flagship operating system that is designed with touch-sensing devices such as tablet computers in mind.
Expect Microsoft to set its lawyers loose on Amazon not long after the first tablet's release, because Microsoft has been suing most major makers of Android devices, and the Amazon tablet is expected to be a big seller.

USA Today
The iPad's virtual keyboard isn't great for extended typing sessions.  Fortunately, a market has sprung up to solve this problem: physical keyboards that work with the iPad, either on their own or as part of iPad cases.  AP reporter Rachel Metz tested four of them. 

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Today's Headlines

Tablets Are Now Great Hope of Publishers for Paid Content
Unlike last year, when most publishers said their websites would be the main way they will charge for content, now 42 percent of publishers say tablet apps and digital editions are the primary way they will charge. 

Huge Collection of Comic Books Available on iBooks
IDW Publishing announced that is has added the largest collection of comic and graphic novels to Apple’s iBook store. This is the first time that a comic publisher has offered such a large quantity of digital comics or graphic novels in Apple’s native book reader.

JP Morgan Boosts 2011 Tablet Sales Estimates to Nearly 52 Million
JP Morgan increased its estimates for 2011 tablet shipments to 51.9 million units, citing the strength of Apple's iPad.  The bank also cut the tablet forecasts for next year.  The reason?  A "formidable number two tablet maker" has yet to arrive."

Microsoft May Be Ready for Big Tablet Push
Next week a high-ranking Microsoft Corp executive will stand on stage and show off a new version of Windows on a tablet computer. Windows chief Steven Sinofsky will unveil an early version of its next touch-enabled, tablet-friendly operating system -- code-named Windows 8 -- to independent developers at their annual conference in Anaheim next Tuesday,

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Today's Headlines

Analyst Says 2011 iPad Sales Will Top 39 Million
Canaccord analyst T. Michael Walkley has increased his calendar 2011 iPad sales estimates to 39.2 million from 37.8 million and raised his calendar 2012 estimates to 59 million from 56 million.

HP Producing More TouchPads
The Next Bench (HP blog)
A limited supply is coming and it will be a few weeks before TouchPads are available,  HP’s Small and Medium Business team has sold out of HP TouchPads and will not have more inventory.

Minnesota High School Buys iPads for Its Students
Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop High School in south central Minnesota bought iPads for all of their students. This meant 375 new tablets that meant to be used as companions to the learning process.  Thirteen iPads were dropped or crushed and 9 were misplaced or stolen. Fortunately, the mandatory insurance policies carried by the students meant they were all replaced.

Thinner iPad 3 Rumored to Be Coming in February 2012
The Register
Apple's upcoming iPad 3 - now expected in February 2012, or thereabouts - may be rather thinner than the current model.  Apple has allegedly chosen battery units for the iPad 3 that are thinner, lighter and last longer than the ones in the iPad 2.

Pay-TV Networks Eager for Amazon's Low-Priced Tablet
Fierce Cable
With the prospect of Amazon marketing a tablet that costs half the price of the iPad, it's likely that tablet computers could make their way into the homes of millions of pay TV subscribers. Turning the tablet computer into a mass market product opens up a new distribution outlet for content owners, and could also create new advertising and subscription revenue streams for pay TV distributors.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Today's Headlines

Amazon's Tablet Computer "Is Very Real"
Journalist MJ Siegler:  "It’s called simply the “Amazon Kindle”. But it’s not like any Kindle you’ve seen before. It displays content in full color. It has a 7-inch capacitive touch screen. And it runs Android....How do I know all of this? Well, not only have I heard about the device, I’ve seen it and used it. And I’m happy to report that it’s going to be a big deal. Huge, potentially."

Red Ink May Be the Path to Tablet Success
Lemon Grove Patch
 If you’re not Apple, this market is simple. You can be the dominant iPad rival just by taking a haircut of $200-$300 on every tablet you sell.

Court Order Results in Samsung Yanking Tablet from Berlin Trade Show
ABC News (video)
Samsung pulled its brand new Galaxy 7.7 tablet from one of the world's largest electronics shows in Berlin. The move came after a German court banned all sales and marketing of the device.

Sony Tablets Faulted for High Pricing
Sony has created some innovative hardware designs with its Sony Tablet S and Tablet P devices. However, it didn't move the needle on price versus iPad or Amazon's forthcoming "Honeycomb" slates.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Today's Headlines

FT's iPad and iPhone Apps Vanish from iTunes Store
Two months after the deadline for compliance hit, it’s now clear The Financial Times and Apple can’t come to a compromise over the new requirement that in-app subscription payments must go through iTunes Store.It is a blow to the FT, whose apps had processed subscription transactions independently.

Why Content Companies Will End-Run Apple's App Store
Business Insider
Among the reasons for moving to HTML 5:  it's cross-platform, HTML 5 tools like OnSwipe are relatively easy to use, and HTML 5 keeps improving. 

JibJab Books Come to the iPad
USA Today
Gregg and Evan Spiridellis, who run the JibJab e-card website, got so jazzed about the multimedia book apps that they decided to enter the market themselves. Their line of JibJab Jr. children's books launched this week in the Apple's app store.

Why HP Is Bringing Back TouchPad for One More Bow
Writer John Paczkowski believes its to appease the suppliers that manufactured components for it, expecting production runs of 500,000 to 1 million units. “While the company is stating it is doing so to satisfy stronger than expected demand, our checks with supply chain sources indicate another reason may be to fulfill commitments to component suppliers and manufacturing partners,” Sterne Agee analyst Shaw Wu told Paczkowski.  

First Impressions on Sony's Tablet
Critic Melissa Perenson on the 9.4-inch Sony Tablet S:  "Sony may be late to the party, but I appreciate the fact that the Tablet S reflects the company's attempts to differentiate it from the cookie-cutter tablet field. I look forward to using the final product, because this preproduction model certainly shows lots of potential"