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Mobile trends predicted for 2011

January 29, 2011 Leave a comment

oday we are on the verge of a time when app-capable non-PC devices will out ship PCs. The mobile sector will be the main growth driver, with mobile voice revenue advancing at a 8.1 percent CAGR in India during the 2010-15 period (in contrast to 2.7 percent for Asia-Pacific as a whole) and mobile data service revenue growing at a 27.3 percent CAGR during the same period. What ruling the picture today are mobile phone and its close cousin, mobile apps. Technologies like 4G and LTE, Near Field Communication (NFC) will witness increasing amount of hype in 2011, and as a result of it, the use of mobile/social/location combinations will soar. Adding to it, recent industry reports from InMobi and Synovate have revealed that consumers are showing a greater inclination towards receiving mobile advertising and marketing messages. So what are the fresh mobile trends that the coming year has in its store for us?

Here are the five that topped the list:

1) More personalized mobile marketing:

Thanks to the popular portable smart devices and advances in wireless technologies, mobile marketing is increasing quickly. Short message is regarded as one of the most efficient modes of mobile marketing. While mobile advertising boosts communication with consumers, the messages without a required permission from users cause privacy violations. But the adoption of more translucent and permission-based marketing will increase the credibility of mobile as an effective marketing tool.

2) Mobiles will turn into “electronic wallets” replacing credit cards:

he day is not too far when you’ll be purchasing your goods using your phone as a credit card. Mobile micropayments will soon make us pay from mobile-turn-electronic wallets. One of the key advantages of mobile payment is that it will make the transaction much quicker and secure than the credit card readers or any written form. Recently, Google made an announcement that in its next release of Android 2.3 or “Gingerbread”, there will be support for NFC (Near Field Communication) technology. Nokia’s C7 handset also has an NFC chip included, which will be activated in 2011. Adding to it, Apple?s next iPhone is also likely to come with NFC. NFC is a short-range high frequency wireless communication technology which enables the exchange of data between devices over about a 10 centimeters distance.

3) Apps vs. HTML5, the war will go on:

According to Forrester, it’s not a question of “either/or” when it comes to a choice between apps vs. the mobile Web, but both. While for regular users of services like banking and brokerage apps will be on demand, the Internet will remain the retreat for more occasional information and needs. However, despite great opportunities offered by the new HTML, apps and app stores continue to rule mobile content, as the availability of basic functions of an app even without a stable data connection makes it more appealing for customers.

4) Mobiles will join the 3D bandwagon:

Being integrated in almost any device, 3D technology is the talk of the town today. As of now, a few mobile manufacturers have started experimenting with 3D technology, but they still have to go a bit further to create a sophisticated 3D mobile device. This year, the market is likely to see more such experimentation. In India, Spice Mobility has already introduced a phone with 3D capabilities. LG has also tossed its hat into the ring. It showcased its 3D mobile concept at CES 2011.

5) The concept of Green Mobiles will get momentum:

In a bid to appeal to the environmentally conscious consumers, some mobile vendors are developing handsets that are eco-friendly. Following its “GreenHeart” mantra, Sony Ericsson has made Sony Ericsson Elm, a handset made from recycled plastics and free of hazardous chemicals. It comes with a low power consumption charger, reduced packaging and some eco-aware apps. Another interesting fact is that it comes with an e-manual on the phone instead of a printed guide. We have other mobiles like LG’s GD510 that comes with the facility of solar charging. Given this move, we expect other vendors to go down a similar route.

Facebook may be the most “in” thing but don’t let it affect your social and professional life

January 29, 2011 Leave a comment

These days, Facebook may be the single best way online to keep in touch with friends, associates, far-flung family members, and people with similar interests. But if you’re not careful, it’s probably also the site most likely to get you into trouble.

Virtually every week, there’s another news report about employers using Facebook to evaluate or screen employees or potential employees, making assumptions about character, trustworthiness, or conduct based upon Facebook postings or “friends.”

Girlfriends and boyfriends, husbands and wives, friends and neighbours can check out each other’s Facebook pages with ease, possibly jumping to erroneous conclusions about what shows up. So how can you enjoy what Facebook has to offer while limiting your risk? Follow these steps:

Know your privacy settings

Whether you’re active or not on Facebook, if you haven’t visited the Privacy Settings area, you should put this on the top of your to-do list. In short, Facebook pages get indexed very well by the major search engines, and unless you know both what’s on your page and what could be on your page as a result of friends’ postings, you should take control pronto.

From Facebook, click Account in the upper right-hand corner,and from the drop-down menu, choose Privacy Settings. The Choose Your Privacy Settings page opens. Under Sharing on Facebook, go directly to the “Customize settings” link at the bottom of the Settings table, and make the most appropriate selections for what you wish to share with the world, your friends, and friends of your friends.

But don’t stop there. Under the Connecting on Facebook section, click the “View Settings” link. The Connecting on Facebook page appears,and from there you make important decisions such as whether you can be found as a result of a standard search on Facebook and whether others can view your list of friends.

Watch what you post

Consider Facebook a close relative of e-mail. That means that anything you say, any picture you post, any member you befriend can be made public without too much trouble – regardless of your privacy settings. In the digital age, after all, everyone knows how to copy and paste, and screen captures can easily link you with a post on your wall. If you really want something to remain private, don’t post it on Facebook.

Reign in third-party apps

A growing number of third-party social networking applications and websites – such as TweetDeck for Twitter and Digsby for instant messaging – are asking for access to your Facebook account so that updates can be sent two ways. Don’t allow such access requests unless you know what you’re getting into. Using third-party tools that are tied into Facebook might make you appear “online” on Facebook far more often than you actually are, for example – a potentially embarrassing situation.

Even when you do allow third-party access to your Facebook account, it’s a good idea to visit the Apps and Websites section of your Facebook Privacy Settings page to see which programmes have been granted access. From Facebook, click Account, Privacy Settings, and then under Apps and Websites, click the “Edit your settings” link. Adjust the settings appropriately.

Facebook taking on groupon – Launches Group-Buying Prototype

January 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Facebook is currently testing a new feature called “Buy With Friends,” which allows users to get discounts on virtual goods purchased by their friends.

Here’s how it works: A user makes an in-app purchase using Facebook’s currency, Facebook credits, and shares it in his or her newsfeed. A friend sees the purchase and can then buy the same item at a discount directly in the newsfeed.

Currently, the feature only works for certain in-game purchases of virtual goods. Developers determine the items and terms of the promotion.

Speaking at the Inside Social Apps Conference in San Francisco Tuesday, Facebook’s head of commerce product marketing Deb Liu said that during early tests, more than half of users chose to share their purchases with friends, Forbes reports.

Although Buy With Friends is currently restricted to virtual goods, we can easily envision how this feature could be expanded to include physical goods as well, especially as more and more retailers set up shot on Facebook. The prototype could be Facebook’s way to participate in the kinds of group-buying offers recently popularized by the likes of Groupon and Livingsocial.

Twitter Now Worth $4 Billion

January 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Twitter’s market value has reached $4 billion just a month after it raised $200 million in funding.

According to SharesPost, a secondary market for buying and selling stock in privately held companies, Twitter’s value has jumped to $4 billion, based on recent transactions. That is a $300 million increase in value in just over a month, based on the $3.7 billion valuation set by its funding round in December. Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers led Twitter’s most recent round of funding.

Twitter’s market capitalization will likely continue to rise in the near future. Several recent stock purchases on the private markets imply that Twitter’s value is more than $6 billion. While these smaller transactions aren’t a definitive basis for defining Twitter’s value, they are a benchmark that can help determine whether a private company’s value is trending up or down.

Facebook is still the king of private markets, though. While its most recent funding round valued the company at $50 billion, its value on the secondary markets has skyrocketed to $75 billion.

Secondary markets for privately traded companies are currently the subject of an SEC probe over whether they violate SEC regulations.

Facebook Raises $1.5 Billion, Now Worth $50 Billion

January 22, 2011 3 comments

Facebook has just announced that it has raised $1.5 billion in venture funding from Digital Sky Technologies, Goldman Sachs and clients of the investment bank. With this round, Facebook is officially worth $50 billion.

“Our business continues to perform well, and we are pleased to be able to bolster our cash position with this new financing,” Facebook CFO David Ebersman said in its announcement. “With this investment completed, we now have greater financial flexibility to explore whatever opportunities lie ahead.”

DST invested $50 million while Goldman Sachs invested $450 million. The remaining investment came from overseas shareholders participating in Goldman Sach’s Facebook investment vehicle. The social network says that it could have raised anywhere between $375 million and $1.5 billion from the investment vehicle, but decided in the end to limit the additional funding to $1 billion.

Facebook says that it was approached by DST and Goldman Sachs about the potential investment, and “Facebook decided it was an attractive opportunity to bolster its cash reserves and increase its financial flexibility.” The social network also confirmed in its announcement that this transaction will give it over 500 shareholders, which will require Facebook to publicly disclose its financial results no later than April 30, 2012.

Facebook says that it has no immediate plans for the $1.5 billion it has in its bank, though we believe it will use that money to buy the old Sun Microsystems camous in Menlo Park, expand its staff and accelerate its acquisition strategy.

Custom Car Drives on Water

October 14, 2009 Leave a comment

WaterCar Inc develops high-performance amphibious cars that can reach freeway speeds [0-60 mph in 4.5 seconds] in the water.

Custom designed doors are built to keep water out and allow easy access from the water. The interior is based on a boat design with captain chairs in the front and wrapping bench in the back.

Starting at $200,000, WaterCar Python is definitely not for everyone. For more information about this amphibious vehicle


12 Unusual Swimming Pools

October 14, 2009 1 comment

Infinity Pool

An infinity edge swimming pool located at the Alila Ubud, luxury boutique resort hotel in Ubud, Bali

Hanging Pool

Joule Hotel is a five-star, 129-room hotel in Dallas famous for it’s swimming pool that partially hangs off the side of the building – eight stories up

World’s Deepest Pool (I really dont know about you guys but this pool just scares the crap out of me 0.0 )

Nemo 33, a recreational scuba diving center in Uccle, Belgium is home to the deepest diving pool in the world. The pool has two large flat-bottomed areas at depth levels of 16 ft and 32 ft, and a large circular pit descending to a depth of 108 ft

Bathing Ship Pool

Badeschiff is an old barge or cargo container that has been converted into a public swimming pool in Berlin, Germany.

Sarojin Pool

Unique swimming pool with drape shaded island pavilions located at the luxury Khao Lak Resort Hotel in Thailand.

Transparent Pool

Cool modern swimming pool with transparent glass bottom

World’s Largest Pool

Located in Chile, world’s largest swimming pool is more than 1,000 yards long, covers 20 acres, and holds 66 million gallons of water

Ocean Pool

Beautiful pool at Coogee in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Guitar Shaped Pool

World’s Largest Indoor Pool

Located in Japan, Ocean Dome is the largest indoor swimming pool in the world. It is 300 meters long and 100 meters wide

Underground Pool

Located in Midway, Utah, Homestead Crater is a 55-foot tall, limestone rock that nature has hollowed out and filled with 90° to 96° water.

Surfing Pool

Since 1991, Wave Loch has been on a mission to ‘wave the planet’ with a broad range of wave-making surfing pools.