The blogosphere is abuzz with the news that Microsoft has lost a significant chunk of the advertising partnership that it had inked with Facebook and is renegotiating the deal.
You might recall that all of this follows Microsoft’s investment of close to $240 million in the world’s biggest social network when they also subsequently clinched a deal to display Microsoft ads in some markets.
So why has the deal fallen through now, and is this permanent? The answer is possibly NO to both these questions. Firstly, the Facebook of today is not the same Facebook that Microsoft invested in. When Microsoft pumped its money into Facebook back in 2007, the social network had less than 100 million users. Today, it is inching towards 400 million users. With a diversified user base, Microsoft’s predominantly US-targeted ad network does not make much sense.
However, this might not be a permanent reversal as well. You might remember that Microsoft is working on a social network targeted advertising platform which will promote products to users based on thei product’s recommendations from the visitors’ friends and network. It is possible that once Microsoft launches this technology, Facebook could, in all probability, replace its existing ‘Like’ option on ads with Microsoft’s recommendation feature.
What do you think?
The Apple Tablet shall be launching in less than a week from now, and there is still not concrete information about what the device will officially be known as – For that matter, Apple is yet to confirm that a Tablet is actually launching.
But of late, there have been enough evidence to suggest that the Tablet will be called – not iSlate, not iGuide, but iPad. Here are five reasons to believe why this will happen
1. Slate Computing LLC, a firm believed to be the shell company of Apple has supposedly filed for the trademark for the ‘IPAD’ name in Canada recently.
2. Around the same time when this filing was made in July last year, another company – IP Application Development, believed to be yet another dummy corporation of Apple had filed for the ‘IPAD’ trademark in Hong Kong
3. Again, in July of 2009, a UK based law firm filed the ‘IPAD’ name in UK
4. IP Application Development filed the trademark yet again this month in the countries of Australia and New Zealand. Incidentally, this company is also based out of Delaware, USA; much like Slate Computing LLC.
5. The trademark for ‘iPad’ in USA is held by Fujitsu. Apple is apparently in a legal fight against Fujitsu over the the trademark. The filing was first made in September 2009 and has continued through December.
Besides all this, iPad could go well with iPod and other one syllable brand names that Apple has always chosen to go with.
How do you like the iPad name? Tell us in the comments.
[Jesus Tablet via Gawker]
Popular website for gamers, VG247 is reporting that they have information from close sources who have revealed that the motion controller for Sony Playstation 3 has been christened ‘Arc’.
The motion controller consists of one or two wand-like device topped with trackable balls that shall work with the PSEye. If the rumors are true, then it would mean that the popular term for the motion controller would no longer be ‘Gem’. Last month, EA CEO John Riccittiello had inadvertently revealed the name for PS3’s motion controller which was later clarified by Sony as the internal codename.
The company has refused to comment on this new development however.
After the iPhone launched and third party apps became a reality, the iTunes was introduced to a new segment of digital content called apps. The popularity of apps rivaled that of other digital content sold on the App Store like songs; so much so that an App Store was separately carved out of the iTunes store.
With the launch of Apple Tablet imminent, it now appears that the iTunes could soon be seeing a new eBook store in its premises. According to a report on 9to5 Mac, Apple is in discussion with at least six major book publishers who are looking to partner with Cupertino to sell their ebooks to Tablet customers.
According to the source, the book publishers are looking at an “agency model” wherein they shall be able to control the prices and access to the files and the Tablet would merely serve as a platform with Apple receiving a share of revenues. However, it is unlikely considering Apple has always regarded it as a policy to strictly police the content that their users have access to.
Publishers such as HarperCollins are banking on the Apple Tablet as a way to revive the sales of their books. Apparently, to these publishers, the Tablet is a better bet than Amazon Kindle because of the formats that it supports. According to a source, HarperCollins has expressed interest to sell ‘enhanced ebooks’ which are normal ebooks supplemented with videos, author interviews and social networking tools. The publishers say this would fetch the company higher margins on sales.
It will be interesting if Apple secures the partnerships of book publishers well in time before the official unveiling of the Tablet on January 27.
[via 9to5 Mac]
We would advise you to take this rumor with a mug of salt. Folks at DigiTimes report that they have heard from a few sources that Apple’s soon-to-be unveiled Tablet could come equipped with a GPU made by AMD.
As the author points out, this looks highly improbable for two reasons – AMD does not have any GPUs that support ARM processors and secondly, Apple is most likely to go with Imagination Technologies as partner since the company already owns a signficant stake in Imagination.
Nevertheless, we would stay put on this one until more substantial information emerge.
Apple could be launching its own search engine. This is according to sources close to Apple who have revealed that the company is in discussion with Microsoft for a potential search partnership that will see Bing replacing Google as the default search engine on the iPhone.
However, according to these sources, the partnership is intended to be short-term as Apple plans to develop its own search engine in the mean time.
The rivalry between Apple and Google has heated up in the recent past with Google having launched Nexus One that competes against Apple and the latter having acquired Quattro Wireless, a mobile ad network that competes with Google.
A search engine foray from Apple could mean that Cupertino shall be in a position to leverage its smartphone penetration through ads revenue. This space looks very exciting at the moment. What do you think? Will Apple be able to out-do the Big G in the mobile search engine battle? Let us know what you think.
[via Business Week]
The default windows of Google Chrome and a few other browsers show a thumbnail of all the recently viewed websites. Taking this a step further, Microsoft wants you to be able to organize your open-tabs better.
In a patent filed recently at the US Patent and Trademark Office, Microsoft writes that the purpose of a ‘Quick Pick’ interface is to help users who have several dozens of tabs open a quick way to surf through all open tabs and pick the right window.
Here is what we know about the Quick-Pick Interface
- A Quick-pick button shall be available on the navigation menu of the browser and it could additionally come with a hot-key
- Pressing the same will open the Quick-Pick Interface which will display the open tabs in thumbnail fashion
- Hover your mouse over any of the thumbnails to see a bigger picture of the window
- Reorganize your tabs by dragging the thumbnails across on the Quick-Pick interface
- Close all unwanted tabs from the Quick-pick interface
- Click on the tab you want to go to on the Quick-pick interface
The Quick-Pick interface appears to serve as a dashboard from where you may manage all your open windows. But I wonder how many users will actually need such an interface to manage tabs. Except for the power users (who I believe have migrated away from IE a long time back), not many would see a need for this. What do you think?
How many ebook reader manufacturers make for a saturated market? Just a year or two back, this market was virtually non-existant. Today, we have so many companies talking about making an ebook reader.
So, what does Asus have in mind? According to rumors, there are two models that Asus is looking at. The first, DR-570 shall be a 6″ OLED screen device while the second, DR-950 shall be bigger at 9″ with Sipix panels.
DR-950 is said to be a much more comprehensive gadget allowing for web browsing and also coming with tools like RSS-reader, text-speech conversion, headphones and stereo speakers. This could be the device that Asus would be looking to position against the rumored Apple Table. However it is believed the devices won’t be in the market before the end of the year. That’s still some time away.
[ElectricPig via Engadget]
Folks at WMExperts are reporting that they have heard from several sources that Windows Mobile 7 shall actually come in two versions – Business Edition and Media edition. It is also said that the official name for WinMo 7 shall actually be “Seven” and also it is possible that the two editions are referred by more fanciful names and not just ‘Business’ and ‘Media’ plainly.
So, what else do we know? Here are some specs gathered from another rumor posted at MobileCrunch
- Very different from WinMo 6.X and is also backwards incompatible
- Very close to Zune HD kernel and shall work best on OLED screens
- Seven will use Apple-like notification system
- Will not have background processing
- It does not come with any customization – No system resource access, threaded processing
- Based to a major extent on Silverlight and .NET and will not run WinMo 6.X code
- Focused majorly on Business functionalities and Gaming (including Xbox Live functionality)
The actual announcement is expected to happen on February 15.
[via WMExperts, MobileCrunch]
“People may frequently use a classified media source (e.g., the classified portion of a local newspaper) to list items that are for sale and/or search for items to purchase. In some instances, people that are interested in purchasing particular items, may desire to view the items of interest in-person prior to purchasing the items. During everyday travel time, many interested buyers may pass by the locations of the items of interest. These locations of the items of interest may go unnoticed due to a lack of awareness of their existence. “
To solve this problem, Verizon has been working on a technology that will profile buyers and sellers based on the factors such as item description on sale (Eg: Refrigerator) and geographical location. According to the patent filed in this regard, a buyer traveling near the location of a seller shall be notified of the sale-item available in the vicinity along with the seller’s contact details for the buyer to carry the discussion forward.
It is not clear whether Verizon plans to launch its own classifieds system or intends to tie up with other big players in the Classifieds industry.