Android Dominates Smartphone Competition


Three years ago, in the third quarter of 2009, Google’s Android had only a 4% unit share of a smartphone market that was at the time a race between Blackberry’s RIM (19%), Apple’s iOS (17%), Nokia Symbian (38%) and not to mention

Windows (8%) and a few stragglers who shared the remaining 14% of the market.

It’s amazing how times can change, as the Linux-based Android operating system now commands 72% of the unit share of smartphone platforms after the third quarter in 2012, according to a chart posted by Asymco analyst Horace Dedui on Twitter.

In those three years, Google’s Android has effectively crushed the competition, turning the smartphone market into a race between Android and Apple’s iOS, though after Q3 iOS only holds 16% unit share of the market.

However, it isn’t going to be a cake walk for the Android platform to stay on top. Though Google is effective at getting all of the handsets into the hands of consumers, keeping these devices up-to-date with the latest versions of Android is proving to be quite difficult. More than half of Android devices are still running Android 2.3 Gingerbread, which hasn’t been updated since September 2011. Apple’s iOS, on the other hand, managed to get over 60 percent of users to update their devices to iOS 6 in less than a month after its release.

The key to the success of the Android platform may be that it has a wide variety of devices, ranging from inexpensive basic phones, to high-end LTE devices. Apple’s drop in market share may be due to the fact that while consumers await the release of their new products or price cuts on older iPhone models, there are plenty of Android devices to choose from.

Sources: ZDNet, Wired

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Facebook Looks to Dethrone LinkedIn and Help Users Find Jobs

Facebook Jobs AppFacebook recently announced that it is launching an app to help users find jobs. The app will include 1.7 million job listings in areas including IT/Software Development, Science/Engineering/Research & Development and Security/Protective Services. Users will be able to search jobs databases by keywords and location.

In addition to that, the app will include job listings from Monster.com, Work4Labs, BranchOut and the DirectEmployers Association. According to Technology Business Research Analyst Ezra Gottheil, “This makes sense for Facebook. They haven’t done anything like this before, but it’s a natural fit for them. People use their network already to find jobs.”

According to a recent survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers, 50% of employers use Facebook during the hiring process. Employers also use social networking sites to screen the profiles of potential employees, checking posts, pictures and video for information ranging from how much they like to party to what they might have said online about their previous job.

LinkedIn is usually used by users to find a job or business contacts online. Gottheil stated that the network does a solid job of connecting businesses and potential employees, though Facebook’s move into this area will definitely be a challenge. The fact that LinkedIn has such a solid position with job hunters means that it is going to take a lot from Facebook to dethrone it.

“Facebook’s latest move is more of a public service, basically putting a job bank on Facebook where users can see it,” Gottheil added. “LinkedIn is all about jobs. That’s the first place people look, and it’s where they post almost entirely job-related information. Facebook has a long way to go before it begins to impinge on that space.”

This new jobs app is a part of Facebook’s Social Jobs Partnership initiative, which was created back in the fall of 2011 in conjunction with the United States Department of Labor, as well as several other labor organizations.

Source: Computer World – Facebook launches app to help users find jobs

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Apple Files Lawsuit Against Motorola, Doesn’t Come Out on Top Like Suit Against Samsung

Apple vs MotorolaApple may have won big over Samsung, but the same can’t be said about its recent patent suit against Motorola. A U.S. District Court judge in Wisconsin recently dismissed Apple’s patent case against Motorola Mobility, which is now a unit of Google.

According to recent reports, Judge Barbara Crabb of the Western District of Wisconsin dismissed the case with prejudice, which means that Apple will have to successfully appeal her decision to revive the case. Basically, Apple is unable to simply refile the same lawsuit in a different court.

Apple filed this suit against Motorola Mobility back in March 2011 after Motorola sought 2.25% of all net sales on iOS products that use essential industry standard patents. Different companies that own these industry-essential patents are expected to offer them under licensing terms that are supposed to be fair, reasonable and nondiscriminatory.

Apple accused Motorola of seeking excessive royalty payments for its patents. These patents covered a variety of different things, including video streaming and WiFi technology. Apple is already fighting a patent battle with Google on a plethora of different fronts, as well as in multiple high-profile legal cases, which included the infamous Apple vs. Samsung battle.

Apple had generally come out on top in these suits, until the last week or so, that is. That is when Motorola had filed a motion that would have required Apple to adhere to whatever the court decided was a fair royalty rate. However, Apple didn’t go along with that idea quietly, saying that it would only agree to a court-determined rate if the rate didn’t exceed $1 per iPhone.

To be honest, the Apple patent suit thing is getting a little old. How long can they keep suing other companies in order to retain the number one spot on the market? Sooner or later Apple is going to slip up and there will be nothing the company can do to fix it, no matter how many suits they file.

Source: CNET – Federal judge tosses Apple patent lawsuit against Motorola

Tech Army OrganizationFind out what is going on in the Tech Army World.

What are the Top 10 Money Making Missions?

What other companies have joined and what do they do?

How do I join the
Tech Army Organization ?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Nook Color and Nook Tablet See Price Drop

Nook ColorBarnes & Noble is ready to release a new HD version of its Nook tablets next week, and as a result has lowered the prices of its existing tablets. The bookseller recently announced that it is dropping the price on the soon-to-be Legacy Color and Nook Tablet, effective November 4th.

Each of the 7″ tablets will get a $20 price drop from their current prices. The Nook Color will now be priced at $139, with the 8GB Nook Tablet running $159 and the 16GB version costing $179. The brand new 7″ Nook HD will start at $199 when it comes out on November 8, with the 9″ Nook HD+ running $269, which is $60 less than the recently released iPad Mini.

The price cuts of the Nooks were inevitable because the company needed to make room for the new Nook’s higher pricing while also making them more competitive with the Amazon Kindle Fire. The new non-HD version of the Fire has a starting price of $159, though there is an additional $15 charge to remove special offers from it. However, its specs are improved over the first version and, presumably, the Nook Color and Nook Tablet.

The big question here, however, is whether or not these prices are low enough for consumers to jump on board. Not many people look into getting the previous version of a product as soon as the new one comes out. Nobody wants to be behind the curve so it is tricky to forecast potential sales.

The biggest thing here is the competing pricetags against the Kindle Fire and the iPad Mini. Apple has long dominated the tablet market, though Amazon’s Fire has done very well in drawing in consumers who want a smaller tablet without all the bells and whistles for a more affordable price. Do these lower prices do anything to pique your curiosity in a Nook tablet?

Source: ZDNet – Barnes & Noble trims price of Nook Color to $139, Nook Tablet to $159

Tech Army OrganizationFind out what is going on in the Tech Army World.

What are the Top 10 Money Making Missions?

What other companies have joined and what do they do?

How do I join the
Tech Army Organization ?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Apple Debuts iPad Mini and 4th Generation iPad

Apple ipad MiniApple just announced the all new iPad Mini, much to the surprise of no one. However, what did surprise people was the announcement of the fourth-generation iPad, which is like the “New iPad” only newer, so I guess you can call it the New New iPad?

This announcement came much to the dismay of Apple customers who had just purchased the New iPad when it released a few short months ago. The release of this fourth-gen model and the subsequent discontinuation of the third-generation has left Apple customers with only two iPad options to choose from at the moment, the iPad Mini and the iPad 2.

The fourth-generation iPad doesn’t add much aside from a new processor, higher resolution screen and 4G LTE support but it does emphasize one important trait of Apple. Apple has since failed to be the innovating company that it once was, leading the charge into new technologies and revolutionary designs. Instead, the company is simply releasing new versions of existing products with “new” features that other devices have had for a while.

Nothing makes this more noticeable than this new iPad and the iPhone 5. The only thing revolutionary about the iPad Mini is that Apple finally has a product that can compete with the likes of the Kindle Fire HD and the Nexus 7. Granted, this could potentially be a big money maker for Apple, though I fail to see the need for the new fourth-gen iPad.

With the upcoming release of the Surface tablet, which will run Microsoft’s Windows 8, you have to wonder  just how long Apple can stay on top of the market. Other companies are becoming bold and I don’t think Apple can resort to suing them for “patent infringement” in order to keep its top spot.

Tech Army OrganizationFind out what is going on in the Tech Army World.

What are the Top 10 Money Making Missions?

What other companies have joined and what do they do?

How do I join the
Tech Army Organization ?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Amazon and Newegg Display Availability for 3G Chromebook

Samsung-built ChromebookGoogle recently announced its newest device, the Samsung-built 11.6″ Chromebook, which received immediate criticism for not supporting 3G or 4G LTE. However, it appears as if Google actually is releasing a Chromebook with cellular connectivity in the form of a 3G model priced at $330, just $80 more than the WiFi version.

The 3G version is available from both Amazon and Newegg right now while Best Buy and TigerDirect, the other two retailers that offer the device, are not currently carrying the Chromebook. Newegg lists its release date as October 31 for the 3G model.

As far as specs are concerned, both devices appear pretty similar. They each include an 11.6″ screen with 1,366 x 768 resolution, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of onboard

storage, one USB 2.0 and one USB 3.0 port, HDMI out, webcam and 802.11a/b/g/n WiFi.

In addition to that, Google is also offering new Chromebook buyers 12 free Gogo inflight passes along with 100GB of Google Drive storage for two years. If you take that, based on the current pricing from Google, 100GB on Google

Drive would cost you $60 per year after the free period.

The other significant difference between these two devices, aside from the connectivity options, has to be the processor. Both devices have an ARM-based dual-core 1.7GHz Samsung Exynos chip, but according to Amazon’s listings, the WiFi version uses the Exynos 5250 while the 3G model uses the Exynos 4210.

However, that could very well be a typo as Samsung’s site lists the Exynos 4 line as maxing out at 1.2GHz. Regardless, both chips are dual-core processors, though the 5250 uses the newer Cortex A15 architecture while the 4210 version is based on the Cortex A9.

Editors Note: The proliferation of small and smaller devices is definitively adding to the mix of hardware options offered by the top computer rental suppliers.

Source: PC World – 3G Chromebook appears on Amazon, Newegg for $330

Tech Army OrganizationFind out what is going on in the Tech Army World.

What are the Top 10 Money Making Missions?

What other companies have joined and what do they do?

How do I join the
Tech Army Organization ?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Samsung Hints at Galaxy S III Mini Before Big Event

Samsung Galaxy S III MiniThe Galaxy S III is one heck of a smartphone. It’s large, has great features and is one of if not the best smartphones on the market. However, despite its rather large size, a mini form of the smartphone may be headed our way. Rumors about the device have been circulating recently and even more information that points to a smaller device has just been discovered.

The company recently sent out an invite for an October 11 event that talks about small being big, a clever way of stating that the next “big” thing is something small. Marketing teams often use this coy way of speaking, mainly to get buzz circulating about whatever they are about to release.

The thought of a smaller version of the flagship phone for Samsung seemed like a great idea from the start. That idea has since been backed by a screenshot, which apparently came from a Scandinavian retailer of all places, lists a Samsung Galaxy S III Mini, available in blue or white and with or without an NFC chip.

Like I mentioned earlier, the Galaxy S III has been one of the most popular smartphones on the market, including the best selling one from Samsung. However, the big size doesn’t quite work for everybody, especially those who prefer to have a smaller handheld. A miniature version of the Galaxy S III could be a way for Samsung to branch out its customer base and make it so there is literally no reason a consumer wouldn’t like the device.

I personally love my Galaxy S III and I know a lot of other people who love it just as much as I do. Technically it is also a superior phone to the iPhone 5 in almost every single way. If the one thing people tend to dislike about the phone (the large screen size) is being solved by producing a smaller counterpart then Samsung may truly have a way to overtake Apple in the smartphone race.

Source: CNET – Mini Galaxy S3 evidence piling up before Samsung event

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

HP to Cut 25% of PC Models

HP Spectre OneHP recently outlined a turnaround plan that will include the company cutting the number of PC models that it sells by 25% over the next two years. HP stated that during its financial analyst day in San Francisco, that it had a weak financial outlook as well for the next fiscal year in addition to the fact that it expects earnings per share of $3.40 to $3.60, which is well below the analyst estimate of $4.18.

In addition to that, HP’s stock price took a recent shot to the gut after the announcement. It was down nearly 11% in mid-afternoon trading. HP has been working to turn itself around after a series of speed bumps including the development of and scrapping of a line of smartphones and tablets as well as declaring that it may very well sell its PC businesses and then changing its mind.

Meg Whitman, the new CEO for the company, announced money-saving plans back in May that involved cutting nearly 27,000 jobs. In this most recent analysis, executives outlined further plans for each product group. HP will simplify its PC and printer businesses by cutting 25% of the PC platforms it

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pantech Debuts the Vega R3, a Big and Powerful Quad-Core Smartphone

Pantech Vega R3Ask anybody here in the states if they’ve heard of Pantech and the answer will most likely be no. Pantech isn’t really a major player in the smartphone market over here, despite being a reasonable competitor to Apple, Samsung and LG over in South Korea, where the headquarters of the company is situated.

However, it seems as if Pantech is no longer satisfied with just being a competitor. The company is looking to push its way to the number one spot in the Korean smartphone market with its latest quad-core smartphone, the Vega R3. The smartphone is definitely a powerful device and is already being described as the “best existing quad-core smartphone” by Pantech.

On paper the Vega R3 definitely looks solid, though it may not be enough to deem it the “best”. The device, which comes with a 5.3″ screen, could be the first ever smartphone powered by a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor to actually begin selling, even though the LG Optimus G is already planned to start selling in Korea this week.

The Vega R3 and the Optimus G both share the same CPU, an APQ8064 clocked at 1.5GHz, and even feature 2GB of RAM and a 13MP rear-facing camera. The display on the R3, however, is much larger than the Optimus G, measuring 5.3″ and coming with a 1m280 x 720 HD resolution. Pantech calls the screen technology “Natural IPS Pro LCD”, which is a new one for the smartphone market.

In addition to that, the R3 also comes with a 2,600mAh battery, which is a pretty powerful battery for a smartphone. However, when you take into consideration how much power will be needed to work that huge screen, it all makes sense.

Connectivity wise the R3 comes with 4G LTE as well as WiFi a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, a microSD card slot, microUSB 2.0 slot and GPS. NFC support is also included, though Pantech was unable to increase the software tremendously, meaning that this phone will be running Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich instead of Jelly Bean.

Pantech has yet to unveil pricing details for the Vega R3, even though the device is expected to start selling within the next day or two in Korea on all three of the country’s major carriers. There also isn’t any information as to when, or if, this device will hit American or European shores.

Source: Android Authority – Pantech unveils S4 Pro-powered Vega R3, “the best existing quad-core smartphone”

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

HP Debuts New Pavilion Sleekbooks

HP Pavilion SleekbookHP recently announced new Pavilion Sleekbooks, devices that the company is touting as laptops that are cheaper than Ultrabooks but competitive in both weight and thickness. The new Pavilion Sleekbooks will have

two models, the Sleekbook 14 and the Sleekbook 15. The Sleekbook 14 is a 14″ laptop with a base price of $499, while the Sleekbook 15 is a 15.6″ laptop with a base price of $599.

The devices themselves are expected to ship in the United States by October 26 with Microsoft’s Windows 8 OS. The Sleekbook 14 will come with Advanced Micro Devices A-series processors, code-named Trinity, with the Sleekbook 15 coming with Intel Core processors based on the Ivy Bridge microarchitecture. HP was unable to disclose any information on worldwide availability.

The new Pavilion Sleekbooks measure 21 millimeters thick and weigh in at just under 1.8 kilograms and have received a downsizing similiar to Ultrabooks, though are less expensive according to Technical Marketing Manager for HP Kevin Wentzel. Ultrabooks start pricing around $600 and have strict design requirements from Intel, like only being able to use Core processors and being no larger than 21 millimeters thick.

According to Wentzel, “I always talk about Sleekbooks as a kind of superset of Ultrabook, where Ultrabook has strict requirements in terms of size, technology, weight, all of that. Sleekbooks expand that and give us a few more options. Lots of people like the ultraportability and thinness, but were probably waiting for a price point they can afford. We feel like we’re getting that now.”

In addition to the new Sleekbooks, HP announced a new HP Notebook 3125 laptop, which is the successor to the Pavilion DM1Z laptop. The 3125 has an 11.6″ screen and AMD’s low-power E2 processor, which puts a CPU and graphics core in a single chip. HP didn’t offer up any pricing information on the 3125, nor any information about a release date or release countries.

Source: Computer World – HP announces more Sleekbooks as cheaper ultrabook alternatives

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment