So it’s 3rd of May today and that means that Google has about a month to start proving that the promises it made earlier this year. Let’s recap what we can look forward to:
- Google TV will be on majority of new TVs
- Android apps will be beating iOS apps to the market
- Android tablet of “the highest quality” (auto-translated)
It’s great. Only one month to go all this will be a reality. Or could it be that Eric Schmidt was perhaps a bit too ambitious? I mean, it’s great to aim high, but these are very serious claims. And if Google fails to deliver, their credibility in terms of any future predictions will be seriously undermined.
With the final version of the phones, which RIM said would not be sold to consumers until late this year, the company will attempt to regain market share lost to Apple’s iPhone and phones that use Google’s Android operating system. The company is handing out about 2,000 of what it calls “alpha” versions of the phone to developers attending a company-sponsored conference in Orlando, Fla.
Alec Saunders, the company’s vice president of developer relations, said it was necessary to get a “very, very stripped down” version out to developers now to avoid a more serious problem later. “The reason why we’re doing this — which is unprecedented for us and it’s quite uncommon in the industry — is because we want to create a wave of application support behind the new BlackBerrys before we bring them to market,”
RIM seems to believe that the best way to excite (the remaining) BB developers and to get them to develop new cool SuperApps on their new Blackberry 10 is to give them a “pokey alpha” version of a possible future RIM phone which does not even run the OS they want the developers to get excited about. Am I missing something?
Only a few years ago the concept of a mobile app store did not exist. Or at least not in a sense as we know it today. Yes, it was possible to get third party apps for your smartphone (mainly Symbian or Java), but the experience was quite lame — no integrated environment, no common policy, no app reviews or ratings, very difficult traceability, no updates, complicated installation. The list goes on and on.
Today, on the other hand, every smartphone platform has its own app store — be it Apple’s App Store, Google’s Market, RIM’s App World, Nokia’s (now almost dead) Ovi, Microsoft’s Marketplace or Amazon’s Appstore. With varying degrees of success and major differences in user experience and app selection, all these app stores* aim to provide a seamless and integrated user experience for discovery, purchase, installation and updates of applications for a range of mobile devices. App stores truly revolutionised the way we perceive value of our mobile devices and the mobile ecosystem as such. And a completely new domain of the SW industry evolved from it.
I have been thinking about writing this post for several weeks, without even realising (in the light of yesterday’s Apple event) how relevant and timely it will be. Yes, I want to write about how the iPad and the ecosystem around it is changing the way our children learn and why the next era in learning methods is about to start. Also, I will attempt to illustrate how learning using tablets compares with traditional methods all of us grew up on.
At first though, why iPad? Why not to talk about all tablets in general? Well, because as of early 2012 iPad is the only tablet that provides the user experience that allows developers (and authors and institutions) to truly innovate in the area of education and also successfully monetise their efforts. Apple’s product is also the only tablet on the market today that is responsive and ‘polished’ enough for children to use it fully naturally and intuitively without getting frustrated every few minutes. So what makes the iPad such a great educational tool and how does it stack up against books?