Software giant Microsoft is waging a high-profile, election-style ad blitz against Google. The public attacks — in print, television and billboard messages that warn consumers about the supposed dangers of being “Scroogled,” or mistreated by Google — marks a strategic shift in a clash of Internet titans. Some experts are critical of the tactics. Continue reading:
As Facebook moves closer to Microsoft, Bing is becoming more like Facebook.
Microsoft’s search engine gained “five times more content” on Thursday, the company said, adding much more Facebook content to the “sidebar” on the right-hand side of Bing’s organic search results. Now, Facebook status updates, shared links, comments and photos will all be shown when a user performs a search, provided the user is logged in to Facebook.
Previously, Bing allowed users to ask their Facebook friends for responses to a query, such as the best restaurants in San Francisco. Now, those results will appear automatically, provided that a user’s friend network has actually discussed the topic. Photos will pop out, and queries such as “Notre Dame” will generate facts and figures on the cathedral, the university and your friends’ opinions. Continue reading…
If hardware is the backbone to any good smartphone, then apps have become the lifeblood with many consumers judging a device on what they’re able to download for it. Microsoft know this and because it’s playing catchup with its competitors, iPhone and Android, it’s turned towards funding developers to ensure apps are created for them.
The New York Times reports that Microsoft is financing the development of well known apps, costing anything between $60,000 to $600,000 depending on the complexity of the app. Developers are reluctant to dedicate time and money into a platform that is both small and unproven so Microsoft is adapting different methods to incentivise developers. Alongside funding their app’s development, the company also provides developers with free phones and the promise of prime spots in its app stores and in Windows Phone advertising
Microsoft only has an estimated 70,000 apps for its Windows Phone platform. Comparing that the iPhone has roughly more than 600,000 apps in its store and Android has almost 400,000 apps, the company is very much trying to bridge the gap between themselves and speed up the process. Their other initiative is teaming up with Nokia to open up an AppCampus in Finland, where over €18 million will be invested into the project over three years, but the company has a lot of work ahead of them if they seriously want to be in a position to challenge the big two.
Twitter is one of the most popular Social Networking Site (SNS) and Micro-blogging platform in the world. It enables its users to share text messages with a length constraint of 140 characters. These messages (aka tweets) are publically visible, by default. Any user can subscribe to tweets from other users by following them. Users can tweet through Twitter website or Twitter clients and apps for desktops, tablets, or smartphones.
Twitter started as a service in 2006. It gained immense popularity in 2009-10. As on 8 Sep 2011, as per Twitter official blog, Twitter had 100 Million active users. More than half of them logged in each day. As on 26 Jan 2012, as per Twitter official blog, 1 Billion tweets were send every four days, which means 250 Million tweets were shared every day.
With so many users connected to the platform and using it on a regular basis, it is becoming an attractive destination for the advertisers. Unlike other SNS websites, Twitter hasn’t yet started offering the option of ‘Display Ads’ to the advertisers. Instead, it has provided them with the following innovative ways to reach the users: Promoted Accounts – Businesses can scale up their follower-base through Promoted Accounts product. The promoted account appears in search results and within the ‘Who to Follow’ section (powered by Twitter’s account recommendation engine). Promoted Accounts are offered through Cost-Per-Follow (CPF) auction, where a business is charged when a user converts into a follower. Promoted Tweets – Businesses can promote key messages through Search Results to the non-followers of their account. Promoted Tweets can also be targeted at followers of a business or at the users having similar profile to that of a follower. Promoted Tweets are offered through Cost-Per-Engagement (CPE) auction, where engagement is defined as click, favorite, retweet, or reply of a promoted tweet. Promoted Trends – Businesses can leverage Promoted Trends product to scale conversations and build mass awareness. Trends reflect hottest topics of discussion during a moment. They appear next to a user’s timeline. Promoted Trends appear at the top in the Trends section.
Twitter is an example of a multi-sided platform. Twitter has built an App ecosystem. Twitter offers APIs that help developers build third party apps. Twitter for Websites (TfW) allows easy integration of twitter into websites with Tweet and Follow buttons. Search API allows a user to query Twitter content and find tweets meeting a search criterion. REST API allows access to core Twitter objects such as timelines, status updates, and user information. Streaming API provides real-time access to Twitter firehose. It helps developers with data-intensive needs.
Twitter business goal is simple: Increase the number of users using the service. This will help attract more advertisers. While third-party apps help increase website traffic and content usage, Twitter has entered into different kinds of partnerships to increase awareness and drive more users to the service. Here are 4 kinds of Partnerships that Twitter has entered into:
Search Vendors – Twitter licenses full feed of public tweets to search engine vendors such as Microsoft (Bing Social), Google (Google Realtime), and Yahoo. This helps in enabling real-time search and discovery. Device Vendors – Twitter partnered with Apple to enable deep integration of Twitter in iOS5 mobile operating system for iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch. This means users can tweet directly from Apple apps such as Camera, Photos, and Safari, along with third-party apps such as Flipboard, Livingsocial, and Instagram. Media – Twitter has entered into partnerships with companies such as Mass Relevance and Crimson Hexagon to help media companies and brands deliver compelling Twitter integration to their users more easily. This can help media companies capture real-time reactions to the important news. Though these partnerships are not major source of revenue, they help in expanding user base. Additional visibility drives further growth for Twitter. Mobile operators – Twitter has partnered with Telecom operators across the globe to enable users to send and receive tweets from mobile phones using SMS.
The chief executive of Apple, Timothy D. Cook, has a prediction: the day will come when tablet devices like the Apple iPad outsell traditional personal computers. Do you find yourself replacing your personal computer for everyday tasks? What do you use instead? Facebook also working on ‘ secret mobile project ‘, what do you think , doesnt it soung great Facebook mobiles or tablets ?
His forecast has backing from a growing number of analysts and veteran technology industry executives, who contend that the torrid growth rates of the iPad, combined with tablet competition from the likes of Amazon.com and Microsoft, make a changing of the guard a question of when, not if.
Tablet sales are likely to get another jolt this week when Apple introduces its newest version of the iPad, which is expected to have a higher-resolution screen. With past iterations of the iPad and iPhone, Apple has made an art of refining the devices with better screens, faster processors and speedier network connections, as well as other bells and whistles — steadily broadening their audiences.
Apple’s stock is hitting new highs during today’s trading. It’s currently at $494.
The crazy thing is that Apple is just getting started. It could sell a ton of iPhones, iPads, and even TVs this year. Don’t be shocked if it’s a $1 trillion company some day.
From Google Finance:
Microsoft and LG Electronics have signed a patent agreement that provides broad coverage under Microsoft’s patent portfolio for LG’s tablets, mobile phones and other consumer devices running the Android or Chrome OS Platform.
Microsoft said that the contents of the agreement will not be disclosed.
“We are pleased to have built upon our longstanding relationship with LG to reach a mutually beneficial agreement. Together with our ten previous agreements with Android and Chrome OS device manufacturers, including HTC, Samsung and Acer, this agreement with LG means that more than seventy percent of all Android smartphones sold in the U.S. are now receiving coverage under Microsoft’s patent portfolio,” said Horacio Gutierrez, corporate vice president and deputy general counsel, Intellectual Property Group at Microsoft.
Since Microsoft launched its IP licensing program in December 2003, the company has entered into more than 1,100 licensing agreements.