Skyfire 2.0 for Android Released

The Skyfire browser brings the desktop web experience to the phone, and until today Android phone owners were unable to share in that experience. Skyfire 2.0 has been released today for the Android platform, and the full Flash experience (sorry Jobs) is part of the package.

Skyfire Stops BlackBerry Development, Focusing on Android

BlackBerry owners will be the first to admit the web browser is lagging behind those on other smartphone platforms. Skyfire has dashed hopes of seeing its browser on the BlackBerry any time soon, as the company has stopped development to concentrate on Android.

Skyfire Bets on WebKit for Mobile Browsers

SkyFire is joining the WebKit bandwagon with the acquisition of kolbysoft, which makes the Android Steel browser. The company may be able to build a better mousetrap, but convincing Android users to download an additional browser will be a tough sell.

On Mobiles, There’s No Stopping Webkit

icon-goldThere are a lot of brave souls out there making mobile browsers, hoping to gain traction with the phone makers. But most of them are fighting a losing battle, for the mobile browser war is increasingly being fought between two camps — the Webkit-based browsers camp, which includes Safari on the iPhone, the Google Android Browser, the Palm browser and the Nokia browser; and the Opera camp.
Today Research in Motion (s RIMM) bought Touch Mobile, a Toronto-based company developing a Webkit-based mobile browser. Maybe it’s time for Microsoft to throw in the towel and officially get on the Webkit bandwagon as well. With the BlackBerry still the reigning champion of the smartphone business, at least in North America, the Webkit is about to get a big boost. Even Mozilla’s Firefox Mobile has an uphill climb ahead, though one can’t blame them for trying. Many mobile industry insiders believe that the browser is one of the biggest drivers of the mobile Internet boom.
Frankly, I can’t wait for my BlackBerry Tour to get some browser smarts and become more useful than its current role of just a solid messaging device.

Vid-Biz: Skyfire, Cinemash, VOD

Skyfire Gets a New CEO; Jeffrey Glueck joins the mobile browser company, was formerly chief marketing officer at Travelocity. (TechCrunch)

Cinemash Kicks Off Today with 500 Days of Summer Stars; Zooey Deschanel and Joseph Gordon-Levitt take on roles in a web remake of a scene from Sid & Nancy. (Tubefilter)

VOD Server Revenue to Triple by 2013; growth to come from operators beefing up services like remote storage DVRS, targeted ads and start-over services. (Infonetics)

Tribune Media Services Selects eGuiders; syndication partnership will put eGuiders’ curated video applications on Tribune’s web sites and networks in the U.S. and internationally. (emailed release)

Media Bigwigs Split on Monetizing Content; in unscripted comments at the Allen & Co. conference, Disney CEO Bob Iger says he’s confident people will pony up for content, other execs say that just ain’t so. (The LA Times)

Why Hulu Has Succeeded; Saul Hansell says that the premium content portal’s focus on being the online home of network TV went a long way to making it a hit (the exclusive content didn’t hurt either). (Bits Blog)

Vid-Biz: Blockbuster, Rotten Tomatoes, Windows Media

Coulda Been: Blockbuster Was Going to Get Into the Operator Biz; former exec explains how the movie rental chain was going to roll out video over DSL in partnership with Verizon. (All Things D) And while Blockbuster endures a far less glamorous fate, Redbox moves into Manhattan. Company installs two DVD rental kiosks in the largest U.S. market, one in the Walgreen’s at the Empire State Building, and one at One Times Square. (Variety)

Rotten Tomatoes Show Debuts Tonight; movie reviews and info show will run on Current. (Digits Blog)

Windows Media Center Adds Sports; launching today on Windows Vista, Microsoft has content from Fox Sports, CBSSports.com, and MSNBC, including recaps of March Madness. (CNET)

Joost Partners with Netlog; agreement with Europe’s leading social networking service will let Netlog’s audience watch Joost content. (TechCrunch)

Less Than 4 Percent of U.S. Homes Not Ready for DTV Switch; since mid-February, more than 500,000 homes have prepared for the June 12 transition. (Nielsen Wire)

Ustream and Skyfire Enter into Promo Agreement; live-streaming company to endorse the mobile browser; Skyfire will make Ustream a featured bookmark. (jkOnTheRun)

Mobilize LaunchPad Contestants Announced

With less than three weeks to go, we are busy trying to finalize panels and speakers for our Mobilize conference, scheduled to be held on Sept. 18 in San Francisco at the Mission Bay Conference Center. (We have super-saver tickets on sale but not for long.) One of the highlights of the event is Mobilize LaunchPad.

When we asked for submissions, we were simply deluged by the number of entrants, many of them tiny and pre-launch. The sheer number of applicants shows the robustness of the mobile application market. If you give innovation a chance to thrive on mobile, entrepreneurs will think of many different ways to leverage the mobile platform.

Much as we would like to showcase all of them, we can’t. Our network editors, conference advisers and mobile experts sifted through the companies and voted for the ones they liked most. Here is a short list of the (baker’s) dozen of companies that will be making presentations on stage: Read More about Mobilize LaunchPad Contestants Announced