Sunday, August 30

LEAKED: New iPhone Commercial

Thats so funny

Saturday, August 29

Let the real Tablet wars begin!


 
Some years back, cellphones killed the PDA, started eating into personal media devices, then the digital cameras and even pose a challenge to GPS devices making  TOM TOM start working with Apple.  And now, cellphones are targeting the PC itself.

Battle for this segment is going to be bigger than anything we have seen yet. As Nokia and its peers try to capture a market segment traditionally served by Laptops and Net-books, they are openly challenging the likes of HP, Dell and Sony into an open battle. This may be the defining moment, for the likes of Sony, HP and Dell to re-look at their interest in mobile computers. The war is on and it looks like the lines between cellphones, tablets, net-books and laptops are blurring at a rate faster than the Moore's law

Nokia has taken the lead this time and has officially announced N900 ( all of you must have heard about it, with reviews buzzing around).

N900 (RX 51) and Maemo

 
N900 running on the latest of Maemo 5 comes with ample hardware and software oomph. While this device is not in smart phone segment, its quiet natural for anyone to  compare it with iPhone
N 900 design is a noticeable shift in Nokia' s strategy to a more Apple like combination of hardware, interface and services. While it certainly out-do iPhone 3GS on a tech-spec listing, responsive UI and content services including apps will be the crucial to N900's success. 
 


RCooper@proTLH

Thursday, August 27

iPhone 3GS: India launch won't happen any time soon


Its been a long wait here in India for iPhone fans to get hold of iPhone 3GS. There has been no news about its launch date though Apple had said Aug 2009. With just 3 days left, an August launch looks impossible. Major tech websites have been spinning up launch dates beginning August 9 to Sept 18. 
 
I got a chance to convince an old friend of mine to get some information on what could be the reasons for delay.  As a well placed insider he does know the dates but wouldn't disclose the same due to obvious reasons.

However what I interpret from our conversation is:

India isn't in their top priority list. Apple iPhone 3GS launch could be delayed by months if negotiations with Vodafone n Bharti doesn't fall through anytime soon.

Major concerns raised by Vodafone n Bharti are:

  1. Limited market size of few hundred phones.
  2. Near 50% of early adopters n iPhone fans have already brought from Grey market.(similar to original iPhone case in 2007)
  3. Without 3G and poor internet usage, there is no compelling reason for upgrades. Unlike other countries, average data traffic via iPhone have been low in India.
  4. Poor PC and Internet penetration. Many iPhones still running on v1 firmware.
  5. Indian market specific issues like lack of file sharing, poor speaker volume and other miscl reasons.

Hence they aren't willing to agree on Apple's demands which include:

  1. Committed volumes for cheaper pricing
  2. Cheaper n more attractive data n voice plans and better EDGE networks
  3. Apple is unhappy about the way iPhone 3G was promoted. (Blackberry storm was given a better push)
  4. Unlike Nokia and many others which are carrier independent, iPhone is locked to network and thus operator's offerings has a major impact on sales.

Moreover, Both parties aren't eager because:

  1. Studies shows that high end phone sales essentially doesn't translate to bigger usage bills.
  2. Indian Market is unfamiliar to Apple and it's content delivery model which includes iTunes
  3. High end phone sales have been driven by social status n peer pressure demands and most features (areas were iPhone excel) remains poorly used.

Thus iPhone 3GS launch depends on how soon both parties arrive at a deal. It seems shortage of stocks isn't a concern and the real issue is at what rates operators will buy from Apple which in-turn depends on the volume that operators can commit on.
 
Bottom-line is that iPhone 3GS launch won't come anytime soon unless we get really lucky.

My good friend also hinted on a possibility of coupling Apple 3GS launch with 3G network services launch which is currently under testing.

Now all this is disappointing. Till today I hoped every upcoming Friday could be a possibility. Oh, I really hope what I heard is wrong and that those guys hv already finalized the negotiations. However, there is no question of switching sides. I would rather wait than go for N97

 Aron@proTLH
 

Sunday, August 23

FB 3.0 atleast



As the wait for iPhone 3GS seems to get prolonged, I hope Apple atleast will release the new Face Book app. The V3 version looks impressive and I cant wait to try it out


Saturday, August 22

personas - online identity portrait

Each one of us would have self googled to see our presence in the world wide web and often surprised see thousands of search results from all sorts of websites. Our online persona is increasingly becoming very important in real world as prospective employers, clients and even acquaintances resort to checking online presence as a means of ascertaining character.

I stumbled upon this MIT labs project which tries to represent this search data in a set of predetermined categories and thus create a sort of character portrait of one's online identity. I liked the real time visual representation of search results.

The current output isn't really useful, as it cannot differentiate between two individuals having the same name. My name was completely overshadowed by another who seems to be a pensions and financial market guru. Tough guy to crack with his name quoted all over the financial web.

However, its still a brilliant concept and we will certainly see better results as it evolves. Try it here at Personas by Aaron 
Oh we share the same first name



Aron@protlh

Monday, August 17

dashes.com - Google's microsoft moment


I chanced upon a brilliant article by Anil Dash with his views on the changing culture at Google and how Google is facing the same problems Microsoft had to face 15 yrs back as it entered the big league of business powerhouses.  
For me, Google has been the liberator company, one that kept finding newer ways to monetize and let its users enjoy the best of web free ( or with a few ads around). We still wouldn't have seen free unlimited storage, free maps, translations and many other things, if not for Google and the culture it ushered in.
I always never had an issue with Google having access to to much of my private information cause it never crossed the mind that Google could turn evil ever. 

But as Google moves ahead, from being a Giant start up to a company with too many investor interest and internal completions, its started showing signs of becoming a giant corporation business decisions. Till a few years back, Google developed for users, for us no matter what OS or what browser I used, it saw all equal. But today, its internally compelled to do more for Android or Chrome OS giving us the feeling that Google has started attempts to give an unfair advantage to Android and Chrome.

I must say, Anil has aptly coined this event as  "The microsoft moment".This is something each company entering the big league will have to face and address.


Aron@proTLH

Friday, August 14

iTab from Apple?


apple-tablet-tagpage.jpg

Is this real..


for long industry analysts and tech blogs have been predicting the possibility of a larger hand held device from Apple. There are hundreds of Photoshopped artist impressions of this device floating over the Internet. Many blogs even have guessed the hardware configurations too.
504x_apple-tablet3.jpg
Yep, there is certainly a market for such a device, one that can converge an UMPC ,a PMP and an e book reader. Something that you can flick out of your jacket to surf the internet with full featured browser, connect and copy files from your digicam or usb storage, watch a movie or connect to your car's GPS system while driving.

No wonder we all expect Apple to come up with a tablet, a bigger 10 inch iPod touch with loads of memory and connectivity options. Its natural that expectations are higher this time, thanks to iPhone.

Industry gurus are predicting September to be a big month expect this game changer announcement during the upcoming keynote address. iTunes 9.0 announcement indicates that a hardware announcement is highly possible. Major upgrades to iTunes have been always coupled with new hardware announcements.

504x_apple-tablet-contest.jpg

Pricing
has been predicted to be in the range of 700 to 1000$ which is almost double the current netbooks, but well, that's the way Apple does business and nobody really complains.

There are hundreds of Photoshopped artist impressions of this device floating over the internet. Many blogs even have guessed the hardware configurations too.

The best one is this post from Gizmodo that have listed the challenges Apple will face in making this device a blockbuster like iPhone or iPod.
And check the video here, which may not be true but certainly interesting.



Images via Gizmodo, the gadget guide


Jammy@proTLH

Sunday, August 9

iPhone 3GS yet to reach India

The wait gets longer!
I had this countdown gadget on iGoogle set to August 9 and since the day 3GS debuted in USA and have been looking forward to August 9. Sadly, August 9 turned out to be a practical joke and my wait  just got longer. With dull sales last time, Vodafone and Bharati wont be particularly interested in this launch and hence wouldnt be compelling Apple to direct some stocks to India while they are shipped from China and Korea to the west. 
Now, most "market tech gurus"  talk of release date being set to august 22, 2009. Well there is no option but to wait and hope that those guys are correct this time. Worldwide sales have been rock solid for iPhone and inventory shortages have been cited at many countries with retailers running out of stock. So it seems quite natural that Apple isnt really eager to bring their new baby to Hindustan which remains one of the few remaining strong holds of finnish Nokia.
Airtel and Vodafone are partly responsible for weak sales in India,  mainly due to their half hearted campaigns and pathetic plans that were offered which didnt even have unlimited data. They actually promoted the Blackberry Storm in a much better way. Well everyone now knows that the Storm ended up like the Lull before storm. 


Apple has been kind enough to existing customers by maintaining the backward compatibility of iPhone OS and thus providing new features and tweaks to existing users too. OS 3.0 firmware has been a boon as the changes and new features in OS 3.0 has been keeping me occupied till now. 
I pray Iphone 3GS pricing should on the range of 32k, similar to 3G launch last year. Worldwide, the rates have been similar with the older 3G getting a price cut upto 50%. Hope these guys wont launch iPhone at 45k as quoted by many India centric techblogs and Gurus if they wish to sell atleast a few hundred of them.

On the other side, India's love for Nokia is good for me. I love the exclusivity iPhone has in India. And I love teasing my N95 and N96 friends with even stupid games like papertoss and Axe togo and some videos downloaded directly from Youtube using Mixtube. 


Aron