|AOL Inc. is unveiling today a new smartphone portal, m.aol.com, that takes the best of AOL and optimizes it for any mobile device. In addition, AOL is increasing its focus on the Android operating system with the launch of the AOL app for Android, giving users a simple and convenient way to access dozens of AOL's most popular properties, and the DailyFinance app for Android. AOL's renewed focus on mobile apps and content comes on the heels of the arrival of David Temkin, the company's new Vice President of Mobile.|
AOL's smartphone portal works on any mobile browser and is designed to make it as convenient as possible for users to access their favorite AOL content on any mobile device. For smartphones supporting HTML5, including iPhone and Android devices, the portal provides a touch-driven interface that allows users to easily scroll through articles and content; location-based services that deliver relevant and local weather, movie, traffic and other updates; an application directory to easily find your favorite mobile apps as well as support for video content.
|Irish headquartered Mobile Network Operator, Cubic Telecom has launched what it says is the first low cost roaming solution for the iPhone 4 allowing users to access the internet, make calls and send SMS anywhere in Europe without racking up expensive roaming charges.|
“MAXROAM products dramatically reduce customers’ mobile roaming costs when travelling across Europe,” commented Pat Phelan, Director of Products and Innovation at Cubic Telecom. “We are constantly developing new technology to stay ahead of mobile operators who charge extortionate roaming rates. Our service is fully transparent and user friendly with no contracts, no bills and definitely no shocks.”
|Barnes & Noble, Inc. today introduced NOOK for Android, a fun and easy-to-use Barnes & Noble eReading experience for those with Android-based smartphones and devices. The new application is the latest addition to Barnes & Noble’s slate of free, popular eReader software and the only Android eReader application offering the ability to share eBooks with friends.|
The new Android app is also the first eReader software to feature Barnes & Noble’s new NOOK-centric branding, leveraging the strength of the company’s NOOK brand across its entire eReading offering. NOOK for Android will soon be followed by an updated NOOK for iPhone, NOOK for iPad, and others in the coming months. The new eReader software branding aligns with the company’s current NOOK offering – NOOK 3G and NOOK Wi-Fi eBook Readers, and the recently announced NOOKstudy online study platform and software solution for higher education.
|Verizon Wireless’ Global Data Roaming Usage Alerts help take the surprise out of global roaming.|
Verizon Wireless helps travelers manage roaming costs by alerting them via text message or e-mail, depending on their device type, when they reach thresholds of $100 and $250 in Global Data Roaming charges. Verizon Wireless Global Data Roaming Usage Alerts are automatically sent free of charge and do not count against customers’ messaging or data allowances.
| Today, T-Mobile USA, Inc. announced the continued expansion of its super-fast mobile broadband network to more than 85 million Americans—the most pervasive network to offer 4G speeds in the country. T-Mobile is on track to deliver HSPA+ speeds in 100 major metropolitan areas with backhaul in place, covering 185 million people in the U.S. by the end of this year.|
Now HSPA+ network service is available in nearly 50 major metropolitan areas across the country, with the newest additions including Austin, El Paso, Fort Worth, San Antonio, and Waco, Texas; Baltimore, Md.; Baton Rouge and Lafayette, La.; Birmingham, Ala.; Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, and Dayton, Ohio; Ft. Lauderdale and Jacksonville, Fla.; Greenville, S.C.; Honolulu, Hawaii; Indianapolis, Ind.; Kansas City and St. Louis, Mo.; Milwaukee, Wis.; Minneapolis, Minn.; Portland, Ore.; and Wichita, Kan. In addition, T-Mobile has expanded coverage in cities in previously announced metropolitan areas including Los Angeles, New York and Washington, D.C. 4G speeds are now available for customers in Alexandria, McLean and Reston, Va.; Anaheim, Burbank, Glendale, Irvine, Long Beach, and Ontario, CA; Annapolis, Bethesda and Chevy Chase, Md.; and Asheville and Hickory, N.C.
|It’s now easier for T-Mobile USA customers to stay connected to leading social media sites. iSkoot today announced that its Kalaida Platform has been expanded to support T-Mobile Social Buzz. The application comes pre-equipped on select T-Mobile phones and once installed provides a live connection to top social media sites including Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter.|
iSkoot’s cloud-based Kalaida Platform gives wireless operators and OEMs worldwide the ability to easily integrate leading web-based services into their consumer offerings. Kalaida concentrates processing in the network, allowing multiple services to remain active at once without impacting handset performance or battery life.
Much has been made in recent weeks over the iPhone and its reception issues, from pundits' gleeful Apple-bashing to Steve Jobs' spin job. Critics and rivals alike have taken their shots with relish; Apple is seen as the new Microsoft, a monopolizing giant.
What is ironic about this perception, however, is that Apple's antenna mistake and response to criticism actually reflect the opposite: other cell phone companies have caught up with the iPhone. Phones such as the Droid X and Evo 4 are loaded with features, and have been developed so rapidly that they now compete on even terms with the iPhone 4. It is this same rapid pace of development, however, that threatens the future of the market.
The mobile phone market used to rely heavily on the principal of planned obsolescence. For some time now, we have seen planned obsolescence put to good use in the mobile market; why release all the features now when you can sell another phone 6 months down the road?
|Orange recently announced the launch of Orange smartnumbers, the UK’s first healthcare specific service from a mobile operator aimed at improving patient care and increasing internal efficiency through cutting the time it takes to contact healthcare professionals.|
This innovative new service gives callers instant access to the best placed person or team available, providing patients and healthcare workers with the ability to reach the right person, first time, and every time they call.
The launch signifies the operator’s first activity in the UK healthcare industry, and the first service of its kind here by any mobile operator. Orange has had a dedicated healthcare division in Europe for four years, and has a ten-year legacy in the healthcare sector.
|Cricket Communications Inc. and Kyocera Communications Inc., provider of Kyocera - and Sanyo-branded wireless devices, today announced the availability of the Kyocera Domino (S1310) mobile phone. It is available immediately at Cricket retail stores nationwide, licensed Cricket dealers and www.mycricket.com.|
The Domino, which replaces the Kyocera S1300 in Cricket’s portfolio, embodies affordable functionality, with enhanced features like an improved keypad, Bluetooth capabilities and a stylish new champagne-gold color scheme with magma–hued accents. Combined with Cricket’s nationwide voice coverage and value-driven, unlimited services plans, the conveniently sized, bar-style phone provides a wide variety of features at an affordable price to please consumers.
The Domino is enabled with WAP for standard Web browsing, as well as downloading of ringtones, graphics and Cricket Games and Apps.
|Zoombak, the leader in personal GPS tracking devices, today launched the Zoombak mobile app for the BlackBerry platform. The app allows Zoombak’s customers to easily locate their tracking devices from a BlackBerry mobile phone. It is now available free of charge via RIM’s official BlackBerry App World and optimized for all Blackberry Storm, Curve and Tour devices.|
Zoombak customers can use the BlackBerry app to find their Zoombak devices on-demand, in real-time. When a user clicks “Find Now”, the current location of their Zoombak device is displayed on a street map, along with detailed location information including city, state, date, time and latitude/longitude data. “Continuous Tracking” mode lets people receive alerts in five-minute intervals with Zoombak’s current location, for up to an hour. Users can easily manage and locate multiple Zoombak devices from the BlackBerry app interface.
“BlackBerry is one of the most popular smart phones on the market, particularly for business users and working parents,” said Simon Buckingham, CEO of Zoombak.
|Michigan’s unemployment rate has continued to drop while total employment is largely unchanged. In June, unemployment declined by 21,000 people but total employment increased only 1,000. State labor department officials say the monthly jobless rate has declined because fewer Michigan workers are actively looking for jobs. The state unemployment rate for Michigan is currently 13.2 percent.|
To help local residents in Detroit, Virgin Mobile is partnering with JobsDirectUSA to host a Pink Slip Party that allows job seekers to connect with recruiters of companies looking to hire and network in a relaxed and casual environment – think speed dating for the unemployed.
|Today, Sprint announced that it has completed the transition of 35 MHz of broadcast auxiliary service (BAS) spectrum across the country. The conclusion of the project, which was begun in 2005 and completed at an estimated cost of approximately $750 million, establishes a new, more efficient spectrum band plan that clears the way for millions of consumers nationwide to gain faster and cheaper access to innovative new broadband services.|
“Sprint’s completion of the BAS spectrum transition marks an important step toward President Obama’s goal of freeing 500 MHz of additional wireless broadband spectrum,” said Michael B. Degitz, vice president, Spectrum Management for Sprint. “This newly cleared spectrum has the potential to be used to create jobs, to enhance the nation’s and the telecommunications industry’s economic competiveness and to increase productivity. Sprint is pleased that it has been able to support this essential element of the President’s technology agenda and the National Broadband Plan.”
|1.7 million consumers bought iPhone 4s in its first three days of sale, sending Apple more than $1 billion in revenue. Research from Yankee Group shows that those same consumers will be worth more than $1.8 billion to AT&T this year, and more than $9 billion to it over the next five years. “Why iPhones Matter,” a new report supported by data from the Yankee Group Anywhere Consumer Survey, outlines why Apple’s Anywhere consumers deserve attention from mobile operators.|
“Apple iPhone owners shop more, buy more and remain more loyal to their phones than users of other devices,” says Carl Howe, Yankee Group research director and author of the report. “Our surveys tell us that Apple is the most popular choice of consumers shopping for a new smartphone. Because those subscribers will earn more revenue for operators, mobile operators worldwide should be courting them.”
|Today marks the launch of LightSquared, a new nationwide 4G-LTE wireless broadband network integrated with satellite coverage that will revolutionize communications in the United States. As the nation’s first wholesale-only integrated wireless broadband and satellite network, LightSquared will provide wireless broadband capacity to a diverse group of customers, including retailers; wireline and wireless communication service providers; cable operators; device manufacturers; web players; content providers; and many others. |
The LightSquared network will allow these partners to offer satellite-only, terrestrial-only, or integrated satellite-terrestrial services to their end users. This wholesale-only business model ensures LightSquared has no conflict of interest with its customers. LightSquared seeks to transform the wireless broadband industry to one that fosters innovation, creativity, and freedom of choice via the first truly open and net neutral wireless network.
AT&T today announced the July 25 availability of Sharp FX, the first quick messaging phone from Sharp on the AT&T network and the latest AT&T Mobile TV-capable device. The Sharp FX is being brought to market by Personal Communications Devices, LLC.
The Sharp FX has a full touchscreen and slide-out QWERTY keyboard for quick access to messaging, IM, email and social networking. The device also features an MP3 player, 2.0 megapixel digital camera with camcorder and Bluetooth 2.1.
Other available features include:
- AT&T Address Book, which syncs contacts to an online address book so customers can access and manage their mobile contacts from their handset — or their PC. Synchronization occurs automatically when any change is made, so contact information is always backed up.
|Verizon Wireless said today that V CAST Apps, its mobile applications storefront, is now available on select BlackBerry smartphones. V CAST Apps gives customers a one-click process to purchase a wide array of apps with the ease and convenience of direct billing; apps purchased are invoiced on customers’ monthly account billing statements.|
“Consumers want to do more with their wireless phones, and V CAST Apps is another way Verizon Wireless is bringing the most desirable applications to the nation’s most reliable network,” said Ryan Hughes, vice president, business development and partner management for Verizon Wireless. “The rollout of V CAST Apps provides proof that the company is focused on delivering the most innovative services and applications that will entertain, educate and make their lives a little more fun.”
| Previously seen as complementary technologies, the development of Bluetooth high speed and Wi-Fi Direct brings them head-to-head for the first time. IMS Research asks: Is there room for both, or will one win?|
Bluetooth high speed technology combines Bluetooth with 802.11 to increase data throughput, upgrading the well-known Bluetooth interface to download large files, synchronize music between two devices, or transfer video quickly. It has the advantage that classic Bluetooth has a huge installed base mostly in mobile handsets.
|Revenue from mobile video services is expected to top $2 billion worldwide in 2013, according to the latest data from ABI Research. Video services included in this forecast are video telephony, video messaging, video sharing, video-on-demand, VoD downloads, and “other” video services.|
“Video services revenue will only amount to about $121 million this year,” says senior analyst Mark Beccue. “But the growth curve is very steep indeed, and will only continue to accelerate through the end of our forecast period in 2015.”
eBay today introduces the eBay Fashion app for the Apple iPhone, delivering a personalized shopping experience where shoppers can browse, buy — and virtually “try on” — items from the world’s largest online selection of new, designer, branded and vintage merchandise — virtually anytime, anywhere.
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