Mobile Apps Get a Shot In The Arm with Google Gears for Mobile

gearsThose of us who rely on hosted (the current buzz word is “in the cloud“) data and software solutions, connectivity is a must.  When we’re a way from a wi-fi hotspot or otherwise unable to get online, these hosted services have little to no value.

Now take this line of thinking one step further to the mobile platform.  The mobile computing revolution is just starting to take off and for it to be valuable, mobile access to data is a must-have.  This is why it’s welcome news for web workers that Google Gears is now available for some mobile handsets.

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2008, the Year the Mobile Market Gets Touch-y

Of all the technology subsectors out there right now, the one with the most promise is the mobile platform. This is true for many reasons, notably that:

  • Your mobile phone is always on your person, making it a lucrative market for advertisers.
  • Most cell-phone consumers are still carrying “dumb” phones but are starting to look at smartphones. This is especially true as the BlackBerry Pearl and $100 Palm Centro are making smartphones more accessible, price-wise.
  • Here in the U.S., high-speed mobile broadband networks are becoming more pervasive.
  • Web sites are increasingly being offered in impressive mobile versions.

One major barrier to adoption with smartphones is the clunky interface these devices offer. Small screens combined with cramped keyboards, inadequate mobile software, and awkward pointing devices make email writing, web browsing and other common tasks difficult. Read More about 2008, the Year the Mobile Market Gets Touch-y

Symbian Bullish On The Future

Apple’s iPhone might be leaping up the smart phone charts, but don’t tell that to the guys from Symbian, who saw 77.3 million Symbian OS phones shipped during 2007, up 50 percent from 51.7 million units in 2006. The number of handsets with Symbian OS stood at 141 at end of 2007. The company is feeling pretty bullish, mostly because of its expansion in hot Asian handset markets like China & Japan. Nokia and others are doing their part to add more interesting handsets to the mix, as we noted yesterday.

Truveo Retrieving Its Video Search Brand

Truveo trounced its competitors in the online video search space in two very important categories. One, it found a buyer, though some might say it sold too early to AOL in late 2005. And two, it found a business model, powering video search for everyone from Microsoft to Brightcove (attracting 39 million monthly uniques in the process).

For Truveo, folding its cards early in the consumer space (with its public site the generic “searchvideo.com“) was a good, pragmatic, conservative move. But as a result, there’s no big consumer brand in video search, in terms of traffic or name recognition. Hoping to fill that void, Truveo is reclaiming its brand and launching a revamped site on Thursday.

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Super growth returning to wireless?

Worldwide, wireless subscriber growth is experiencing robust expansion, according to analyst firm, In-Stat/MDR. By 2009, they forecasts, the worldwide wireless market will grow to more than 2.5 billion subscribers. The growth will come mostly from emerging markets such as China, India, Brazil and Russia. By 2007 they expect GSM to expand its growth, but by 2008 more carriers will move to WCDMA, Ken Hyers, a Senior Analyst with In-Stat/MDR says. CDMA & WCDMA will pass GSM in 2009 to claim the largest share of the market, in terms of number of subscribers, he predicts.

  • While China continues to lead the world in overall subscriber growth, the percentage growth leaders continue to be found in other parts of Asia, particularly the Southern Asia region, which includes India.
  • As growth in China begins to slow, India can be expected to pick up the slack and will be a significant engine of global subscriber growth.
  • European subscriber growth will continue to slow, and will stall in Scandinavia (the world’s first fully mature wireless market) and Western Europe, In-Stat predicts.
  • In the United States, iDEN, represented almost exclusively by Nextel, will see strong growth; however, it is likely that iDEN networks will be phased out sometime during the forecast, resulting in a shift of these subscribers to some other technology.