Posted tagged ‘BlackBerry Storm’

Palm Pre Hits June 6

May 19, 2009

Looks like the Palm Pre will be available June 6 for about $200. This comes with a new two-year contract from Sprint.

Check out the story from Marin Perez at InformationWeek for more information!

From InformationWeek:

Once the undisputed U.S. leader of the smartphone market, Palm has been thoroughly outpaced by the likes of Apple and Research In Motion (NSDQ: RIMM). The Pre, which was introduced at January’s Consumer Electronics Show, was well-received by the press, and Palm is looking to use it as a springboard for a comeback.

With a large capacitive touch screen, Wi-Fi, 3G, GPS, 8 GB of storage, and Bluetooth, the Pre stacks up well against rivals like the iPhone 3G, BlackBerry Storm, and the T-Mobile (Android) G1. One of the most appealing features of the Pre is webOS, the operating system that combines a variety of online services into a finger-friendly user interface.

AT&T To Introduce $20 iPhone Data Plan?

May 18, 2009

It seems that AT&T is considering cutting the price of its monthly service package or offering a range of lower-priced plans. One plan that could be introduced as early as late May would include limited data access at a $10 monthly reduction.

From BusinessWeek:

The possible price cut likely reflects the back-and-forth between AT&T and Apple as they work out whether and under what terms AT&T would remain the sole U.S. iPhone carrier. Apple may want flexibility in pricing as a condition, analysts say. “We understand it’s part of the extension (of its contract) that AT&T wants to maintain,” Richard Doherty, director at consultant Envisioneering Group, says of the prospect of lower data-plan prices. As Apple considers whether to widen its circle of U.S. providers, AT&T may have less ability to balk at Apple’s requests. Representatives of Apple and AT&T declined to comment.

AT&T and Apple also have added scope for price reductions as iPhone manufacturing costs decline. Apple plans to introduce a new version of iPhone software in June, and it may unveil a new, cheaper device in June or July. New devices may cost as much as one-third less to produce than earlier versions, Doherty says. The cost of touchscreens, the most expensive component, has declined by more than 30% in the past year, estimates Michael Cote, an analyst at consultant Cote Collaborative Wireless Strategy.

Lower-priced data plans would probably lure a lot of fence-sitters, including students and consumers with lower incomes. A reduction could boost AT&T’s iPhone subscriber additions by 20% to 25%, estimates wireless industry consultant Chetan Sharma. A survey late last year by comScore indicated that 43% of iPhone buyers earned more than $100,000 a year. But many of the wealthiest subscribers have already signed up. In the first quarter, AT&T activated 1.6 million iPhones, and 40% of those activations were for users new to AT&T. “(A price reduction) absolutely makes sense,” Sharma says. “AT&T is starting to hit a wall in terms of new subscribers.” In the first quarter of 2009, AT&T’s net subscriber additions were 5.6% lower than in the year-earlier period.

Wal-Mart Delivers iPhones, But AT&T Offers a Special $99 Option

December 30, 2008

Wal-Mart began selling the iPhone on Sunday at more than 2,500 outlets, charging $197 and $297 for the 8 GB and 16 GB models. Those hoping the retailer would discount the Apple handset heavily will have to turn to AT&T, which is offering a black, refurbished 8 GB iPhone 3G for $99 until Dec. 31.

From InformationWeek:

Wal-Mart on Sunday began start selling Apple’s wildly popular iPhone at nearly 2,500 of its stores, but not at the $99 price that was previously expected.The retailer said it would offer Apple’s black 8-GB iPhone 3G model, which also holds about 2,000 songs, for $197. The 16-GB model, which comes in black or white, will be priced at $297. Apple sells its handsets for $199 and $299 for its 8 GB and 16 GB models, respectively.

Consumers would still need to purchase a two-year service agreement from AT&T (NYSE: T), Apple’s U.S. provider. New plans start at $70 per month.

Earlier this month, The Associated Press and Bloomberg news quoted unnamed Wal-Mart employees who said the popular smartphones were expected at heavily discounted prices before the end of the year. However, there was no confirmation that Wal-Mart would offer a $99, 4-GB iPhone.

Still, Wal-Mart has the potential of providing a major boost to iPhone sales. Apple sold 6.89 million iPhones during its last reported financial quarter, which ended on Sept. 27. Apple’s iPhone market share for the first quarter was 19.2%, a drop from 26.7% the quarter before. Only Research In Motion (NSDQ: RIMM)’s BlackBerrysmartphone market. series controls a larger share of the

Despite Wal-Mart’s reputation for pushing prices lower than its competition, consumer can find Apple’s iPhone smartphone for much less elsewhere.

Best Buy (NYSE: BBY) currently sells the 8-GB iPhone for $190 and the 16-GB version for $290 until Dec. 31. That’s $10 less than the usual price found at Apple stores.

The lowest price award, however, goes to AT&T, which is selling refurbished iPhone 3Gs in the black 8-GB version for $99 with a two-year service contract through the end of the year. Previously, AT&T discounted its refurbished iPhones to $149. The wireless telecom is also offering refurbished 16-GB iPhone handsets for $199 during the same time period.

The Top Media & Marketing Innovations of 2008

December 16, 2008

Adweek has called out Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg’s decision to open the social network platform to developers who wanted to create applications for users as a top media and marketing innovation of 2008. The magazine notes Facebook’s move had ripple effects, influencing Steve Jobs to open the Apple iPhone to developers and MySpace to open its network to third-party applications.

From AdWeek:

Zuckerberg’s Most Popular

Facebook may not, as CEO Mark Zuckerberg awkwardly proclaimed when announcing its ad strategy over a year ago, have changed the face of media, but it most certainly has changed the development of a medium. Its move in May of last year to open the social-networking service to outside developers proved remarkably farsighted and influential. Its platform spread like a virus in 2008. As MySpace quarreled with widget makers about building business off its audience, Facebook embraced the outside help. The rationale was simple but revolutionary: The surest way to build out services is to have an outside army of developers do it. To date, 400,000 developers have introduced some 52,000 apps-and Facebook, not coincidentally, has exploded, expanding its user base to 130 million worldwide. That not only led MySpace to embrace outside developers but also paved the way for Apple to open the iPhone platform. The result: Everyone has found platform religion. David Verklin, head of the cable TV consortium Project Canoe, even talks of the boob tube as a platform. When the book is written on Facebook — and many are in the works — its critical choice to open up to outsiders may be seen as its most lasting contribution to the development of digital media.

iPhone Juices Mobile Medium
Apple’s iPhone 3G may not singlehandedly push mobile advertising to seriously-big-bucks, steady-line-on-the-flowchart status in 2009 — the sorry economy will most likely keep that from happening. And the trendy device won’t have the U.S. suddenly turning into South Korea, where 90 percent of the population dumps their PCs and starts watching movies and playing games on their mobiles. But in 2008, the iPhone phenomenon did create a shift in the mindset of the American consumer — from “Why would I want to surf the Web on my crappy phone?” to “I can do that? I want one now!” Thus, the touch screen has become the default design choice among models ranging from Google’s G1 and Samsung’s Instinct to the BlackBerry Storm (which, upon its debut last month, managed to create lines outside retail outlets reminiscent of those for the latest iPhone this past July). Then there are the many iPhone games and applications that have launched — everything from a New York Times app to the Social Gaming Network’s iBowl. It’s now clear that the mobile medium is going to get there, and that advertisers are going to have a real canvas to play on in the near future, one that goes beyond short-code messages and clunky WAP sites. For that, they can thank Steve Jobs.

All A-Twitter
It’s easy to make fun of Twitter. The short-messaging service’s simple concept — roadcast what you’re doing right now — has become synonymous with banal updates like your friend is “eating a taco.” To be sure, plenty of taco-eating bulletins are broadcast daily by the six million registered users of the two-and-a-half-year-old service. But the surging popularity of Twitter points to a social-networking truth: Our conceptions of one another — and brands — are often formed by bite-sized interactions. A single update does not in itself mean much — but taken with hundreds, even thousands of them, those little messages can come together to paint a rich portrait. What’s more, Twitter nailed something that’s fundamental to the Web: Keep it simple. Frustrating to some for its lack of bells and whistles, Twitter’s simple “What are you doing?” query and 140-character message limit are arguably its strengths. Twitter also proved that the most successful Web applications are flexible and open. Twitter’s designers never envisioned that consumers would use the service to communicate with one another, but users refashioned it as such, employing the prefix “@+user name” to direct replies. So, Twitter rejiggered to support that back-and-forth, while also letting outside developers build apps, further bolstering Twitter’s popularity. “Tweeting” may not be for everyone, but it’s clearly onto something: The 25-person company recently turned down a $500 million acquisition offer from Facebook.

Storm Brewing for the iPhone?

October 8, 2008

Research in Motion’s BlackBerry Storm smartphone will be hitting the market in the U.S. and Europe next month with exclusive rights belonging to Verizon Wireless and Vodafone. The Storm features a 3.25-inch screen, which is slightly smaller than the iPhone’s; the BlackBerry’s first touch-screen interface; and 3G network support. But, on the negative side, the BlackBerry Storm lacks Wi-Fi access and weighs approximately 16 percent more than the iPhone.

Research in Motion

Credit: Research in Motion

From the Wall Street Journal:

Research in Motion Ltd. is rolling out its first real answer to Apple Inc.’s iPhone, the touch-screen BlackBerry Storm, which will work on broadband networks on both sides of the Atlantic and be exclusive to Verizon Wireless in the U.S. and to Vodafone Group PLC throughout Europe.

BlackBerry will have to distinguish itself amid the wave of other sleek do-everything smart phones coming to market, like Google Inc.’s G1, made by HTC Corp.. The Storm, BlackBerry’s first touch-screen device, aims to make it harder to inadvertently select items while moving images across the screen.

The success of Apple’s iPhone has spawned a series of touch-screen smart-phones from manufacturers around the world over the past year. Consumers will have a multitude of options this holiday season — among them, Samsung Electronics Co.’s Instinct, LG Electronics’ Dare, and the soon-to-be-launched G1 from T-Mobile USA Inc., a unit of Deutsche Telekom AG, and Google.

From InformationWeek:

The much-awaited smartphone sports many of the features of Apple’s handsets, and even outshines it in certain categories. The touch-screen smartphone may give Verizon Wireless a legitimate rival to the iPhone 3G, and it may help stem the loss of subscribers to AT&T. The Storm has 3.25-inch touch screen that has a 360 by 480 resolution. Like the iPhone, the Storm has support for multi-touch interface, but RIM’s device will have haptic feedback for its virtual keyboard, and it will be capable of cut and paste. The keyboard will have RIM’s SureType layout in portrait mode, and it will be a full QWERTY layout in landscape orientation.

From CNET:

Tech journalists and gadget lovers across the globe are rejoicing over the announcement of the BlackBerry Storm, RIM’s first touchscreen cell phone to compete with the iPhone.

Those who can’t wait to get their hands on BlackBerry’s latest call it a marvel and its keyboard functionality, which makes you press down on the screen to register a “touch”, is something worth drooling over.

OK, I guess I can concede that the Storm is really neat and the touchscreen idea is fantastic. But I still don’t see how the BlackBerry Storm will be able to compete on any level with the iPhone 3G.

It’s not that I have a problem with RIM–I think the BlackBerry Curve is a fantastic device–or that I’m not impressed by the Storm. I just don’t see how BlackBerry’s first touchscreen device can compete against the iPhone if the vast majority of “mainstream” users simply don’t know anything about it.

Go ahead and ask the person next to you at the office about the BlackBerry Storm. Chances are, if they aren’t in to technology like you and I, they wouldn’t have the slightest clue about it even though it’s making headlines all over the tech world today.

Then ask those people what they knew about the iPhone the day after it was announced. I’ll bet you’ll find that they knew much more about the iPhone than the BlackBerry Storm.

Do you see what I’m getting at here? No matter how important a new device in the cell phone business may be to the growth of the industry, it will never be able to outshine the iPhone.

From ZDNet:

I just got done reading Matthew Miller’s preview of the BlackBerry Storm, RIM’s first BlackBerry that’s replaced the keyboard with a touchscreen system — one that you must physically depress with your finger to manipulate (resulting in a “satisfying click,” as many reviewers have reported).

My question is simple: is this truly an advancement?

It occurs to me that, while RIM’s responsive touchscreen technology, called ClickThrough, allows it to differentiate itself from the iPhone, it’s not a great advancement in the long run. Well-built as any BlackBerry is, I feel that the screen would eventually give out over frequent, Crackberry-level usage. And when the screen doesn’t press anymore (or worse, when it presses too far), then what?

It strikes me that such physical use of the device is actually backtracking a bit, technologically. Perhaps advancement, to me at least, is removing a “touch” altogether.

RIM’s “push-screen,” as I think it should properly be called, seems to bridge the gap between a true keyboard and a true touchscreen. Which is good for RIM’s keyboard-happy users, but by no means some groundbreaking new technology.

Plus, it also occurs to me that this technology would actually slow down the speedier users among us, because you actually have to take the time to depress the screen when tapping a message out.

But we’ll see when Matt gets his hands on one in a month or so.


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