The number of tablets sold globally will surpass the number of PCs sold by 2017, according to analyst firm Gartner. Sales of Android smartphones are also expected to triple between 2012 and 2017, the firm forecasted.
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the richest of them all?
According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index released this week, Microsoft founder Bill Gates has just edged past Mexican mogul Carlos Slim, who’s lost more than a few pounds since Mexico’s government passed a bill that could quash America Movil’s market dominance.
Operator group France Telecom’s own OTT communications app has now been made available for Android devices. The service, called Libon, was launched for iOS devices in November 2012.
Social networking site Facebook has unveiled an Android launcher application designed to encourage consumers to become more reliant on its services for their mobile communication needs.
The Informer got a software update for his Nexus this week and the resulting tweaks to the interface led him accidentally to the data usage display. He was somewhat surprised to find that the second most data-hungry app on his phone was Google+, a service he has never used. Over a ten-day period Google+ huffed back 5.54MB of data over the mobile network, all of it in the background. This might not sound like much but it’s all relative; roughly one per cent of the monthly allowance, Google+ usage outstrips Facebook by some margin and leaves Gmail in the dust. And it’s worth repeating: This app has never been used.
Co-founder and architect of the Android platform Andy Rubin has stepped down from his role as Google’s senior VP of mobile and digital content. Rubin will remain at Google, where he will “start a new chapter”, according to the firm’s CEO.
Korean handset vendor Samsung has announced net profits of 7.04tn won ($6.5bn) for the fourth quarter of 2012, with strong sales from its mobile division making a significant contribution. The firm’s profit was up 76 per cent on the same period in 2011, when the firm netted 4.01tn won.
Almost two-thirds of the handsets sold in China in 2012 run on the Android OS and China is Google’s largest market for Android devices, according to the latest research from Informa Telecoms & Media. A third of Android handsets sold in 2012 were sold in China, figures from the research firm show.
Capitalising on an opportunity to trump its fiercest rival in the smartphone space, Google is launching what it claims is its “biggest ever update” to its Street View application.
In an effort to consolidate its position as the third biggest player in the smartphone ecosystem, Finnish handset manufacturer Nokia has unveiled two devices running on Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8 platform.The move comes less than a week after Samsung pipped Nokia to the post with a view of the first Windows Phone 8 device to be seen.
The Android platform continues to dominate the European handset market, according to the latest data from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech. Google’s mobile OS has increased its market share by 20.2 per cent over the past year and now hold two-thirds of the market share.
In a bid to propagate Android devices even further into the market, Google is preparing to launch a range of Nexus devices with various hardware partners in the final quarter of the year, according to a leaked memo from Japanese operator NTT Docomo.
Software developer Adobe has effectively killed off its Flash Player for Android, on Thursday pulling the browser plug in from the Google Play marketplace.
Chinese manufacturer ZTE has Apple in its sights, sitting in fourth place, just a few percentage points behind the US firm in terms of handset market share. At a launch event in London on Wednesday evening, He Shiyou, executive VP of the ZTE handsets division, told telecoms.com that ZTE plans to optimise its device portfolio upwards to the mid-to-high range from the mid-to-low tier in order to close that gap. The flagship device for this move is the Grand X, a device targeted at the mobile gaming market.
The telecom industry press United States is all abuzz about the latest rumors that Amazon is in the process of testing a smartphone device that will expand the ranks of its growing Kindle line up. With the tremendous upheaval that the smartphone industry has undergone in the last five years, the opportunity for success seems increasingly limited to companies that have established business models that actually don’t require a device business to be profitable.
Russia’s second largest mobile operator, VimpelCom, has implemented a carrier billing model with Google, allowing users to purchase app store content via their mobile phone bill.
At its annual developer conference this week, Google “opened the playground” with a glimpse of what the future holds for the Android ecosystem. The next version of the flagship OS was on display alongside the first Google-branded tablet and a confusingly positioned home entertainment unit that hints at the firm’s foray into hardware.
As part of an upcoming series of interviews with top tier operator CTOs, telecoms.com spoke with Andrei Ushatskiy, vice president and chief technology officer for leading Russian carrier MTS, about the prickly subject of net neutrality. The carrier recently embarked on a revenue share deal with Google for Android apps sold in Russia.
Scalado sounds like the name of a character from Goodfellas, the film based on the life of mobster-turned-informant Henry Hill, who died this week. Tony “Eraser” Scalado. If you want someone rubbed out, he’s the man. In fact, Scalado is a Swedish imaging company whose technology can be found in the handsets of all of the top five vendors.
Android continues to take the European market by storm, with its share of the big five countries growing from 38.8 per cent in May 2011 to 60 per cent in May 2012.