Android mobile development mobile news

FCC Releases Android Speed Test App

The Federal Communications Commission has released an app in hopes that it will generate accurate comparisons of wireless carriers mobile speeds. The app called Speed Test App for Android will collect information, such as upload and download speeds, latency, and signal strength to allow the FCC to publish a map of this information in the next year. This map is expected to help consumers decide which services to go with and see if consumers are getting what they may be paying for. This creates an incentive for carries to improve their data services.



This is a fascinating step towards transparency in understanding current data speeds and what the average consumer is receiving currently. The data gathered will be interesting for multiple reasons, for designers designing applications to understand what sort of connection their target audience may have, consumers wishing to purchase plans, and providers to know what speeds their competitors may have. I only fear that much like internet speeds, this will mean that certain areas will not be developed as quickly as others, leading to large pockets that only have a slower connection, much like towns and areas that have no other option aside from dial-up, due to the inability or lack of desire for a provider to bring anything else in.


Android iOS mobile news Uncategorized

Mapquest Aims to Regain Users via Mobile App.

Mapquest, previously one of the previous leaders of online mapping, is attempting to recapture users with their new mobile app. The brand still continues, but is barely a shadow of it’s former self. The new app has a much cleaner and pleasing UI. Sadly, there are errors with regards to finding and searching business profiles. Interestingly, they’ve chosen to go the route of paid to remove advertisements.


This is interesting as it marks an attempt by an older former service to recapture users via offering a new improved app. While this shows the possibility of these sorts of tactics to work, sometimes it might be necessary to understand that one’s services may have too much stiff competition. While an interesting attempt, it may lead only to failure.







Android iPhone

Apple Will Start Repairing Devices In-House

Apple appears to be expanding their new in-store repair programs. While Apple has previously performed some repairs in their stores, the new program will expand to a large variety of components. Apple has started shipping parts, manuals, and callibration machines to stores in preparation for the program’s launch. This new repair program will be good for consumers as it allows them to easily have phones repaired by Apple technicians and will build customer satisfaction. The large cottage industry of shops that repair Apple devices may be affected, as Apple may threaten these shops, but may not have any affect at all, due to the limited number of Apple Stores in the U.S. Additionally, these shops can offer services that Apple may not, such as repairing water damage.

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This is interesting to nte because this marks the first time Apple has truly dove into the in store repair services. What remains to be seen is if this new found focus on repairing devices will spill over onto Apple’s designs. Apple devices are a very difficult to repair and work on, and if there’s a large amount of consumers repairing devices, they may design devices to become more repairable. The other interesting idea would be to see how this influences consumers. Will consumers simply keep repairing a device and keep it longer then they traditionally would, or will they continue replacing with new devices every few years? It will be interesting to see how this possibly effects consumer behaviors.

Android disruptive technology iOS

Encrypted Communications via App: Silent Circle

The Tibetan government, law firms, and human rights groups in Sudan are all using a new encrypted communications tool that easily fits onto one’s smartphone. The application is called Silent Circle encrypts voice, text, video and allows a file-transfer protocol across handsets. The app uses ZRTP key agreement protocol to ensure private communications. The text app, Silent Text, uses an encrypted instant messaging system that also contains features like a burn function (which deletes texts after a certain time period) and encrypted geotagging to share location. The most crucial feature, is that the encryption keys are located on the devices within the app, not on a server, boosting security against third-party interference.

This is a greatly powerful application, but there is obviously a fair bit of cost function as well. To make and receive voice calls from any phone number using the app or the desktop application, costs $24 a month. To be able to simply text others that have the Silent text apps would cost $9.95 a month. While there is a bit of cost, it is interesting to see that people do value their privacy and are willing to pay for some basic anonymity.

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This article is interesting, because it highlights the extent that some people will go through to protect their anonymity. There is definitely a market for these types of services and multiple types of customers possible, ranging from those who need security, such as lawyers or CEO’s of larger companies all the way down to those who are in fear of government information collection. Simply put, there’s something to be said for people who value their privacy and people are more then willing to pay for it.


Android iOS mobile news

BlackBerry’s BBM App Gets 10M Downlaods in 24 Hours.

BlackBerry Messenger was recently released for iOS and Android and garnered 10 milliion downloads in 24 hours. Due to the demand, BlackBerry has asked users to wait to activate their service to avoid overwhelming the system. The app occupies the Apple’s top spot in the App Store free-app ranking system and has received over 60,000 five-star reviews. What is interesting is that the sheer number of downloads shows that the BlackBerry brand is not deceased yet and that there is a significant mobile social networking structure that may possibly be spun off into a new brand. Additionally, it is interesting to see how BlackBerry may decide to monetize this app as it is currently free. Of course, in the future, according to Avi Greengart, an analyst at Current Analysis, they may add advertising or a premium for-a-fee levels to the app. This is important because while BlackBerry may not return to become a dominant product and network company, they may still create lots of value with application and a more service based approach on the current two main platforms, iOs and Android.



Android iPhone mobile development

Samsung Galaxy S3 Outperforms iPhone 5s, 5c in Touchscreen Accuracy

According to testing completed by OptoFidelity, using their Touch Panel Performance Tester to measure how accurate a device’s touche screen may register input, Apple’s iPhone 5s and 5c are a bit lacking in the accuracy department. According to this study, the iPhone 5s and 5c had significant accuracy degradation around the edges of the screen as well as near the top of the touch screen. The Galaxy S3, made by Samsung, had errors around the border of the screen but nowhere near as many as the iPhone 5c and 5s.  Coincidentally, the top of the screen and the bottom large border happens to be where a majority of navigation icons and keyboards may be placed and not having sufficient accuracy here may lead to issues with applications and input. This is important because while an application may be the best thing since sliced bread, a good application may never be able to overcome poor hardware and poor hardware accuracy can cause issues with input and typing, leading to a frustrating user experience. This shows the importance of testing upon multiple platforms and multiple hardware setups to ensure apps work as designed, even with possible design considerations due to known hardware deficiences.


mobile news

Mobile Gaming is Displacing TV as Entertainment

According to Flurry research, U.S. consumers are spending 17% more time with their mobile phone than their TV. Also, TV viewership has been decreasing for those 18-24 for the past six consecutive quarters. Gaming is slowly becoming the future of entertainment. For example, Breaking Bad became a huge cultural phenomenon whose finale was watched by over ten million people; Yet, the Candy Crush Saga is played by almost 40 million people a month. This shows that mobile games, especially free-to-play games, are in a rapidly growing and expanding market. Quality games expand a brand’s value but may also bring in new revenue streams. Consumers are frequently deciding to play rather then watch tv. The understanding that mobile games and similar applications are slowly becoming the predominant form of entertainment is crucial to ensure not being left in the wayside.



mobile development mobile news

AT&T Unveils $5 Cellular ‘Day Pass’ for Tablets

AT&T has revealed a $5 ‘day pass’ option for tablet users in need of a connection. This is a change from their previous options of having a month long connection for $15. AT&T is relying on the assumption that their LTE network might be superior to other connections, such as hotel or airport connections. AT&T believes this connection is an alternative to paid Wi-Fi hot spots in airports or hotels as well as giving consumers a last minute option for a connection. This is a great option to paying for a Wi-Fi connection as it allows the user to still have connectivity no matter where they might go. This might be the best option for travelers to ensure they have a data connection without having to locate the nearest Starbucks or similar option. This is a really interesting development in the pay as you go type services.


disruptive technology iOS Uncategorized

Blog Post 10/10/13

Apps on iPhone 5s are crashing twice more often than on previous models. 

Interestingly, according to the app platform Crittercism, iPhone 5s apps are crashing twice as often as apps on other models. This comes along with reports of alignment isssues, a blue screen of death, and other issues related to the new iOS 7 operating system. Updates have been released, but it is interesting to note that ‘some of the issues may have arisen simply from the fact that developers did not have enough time to adapt their apps to the new hardware and the 64-bit Apple A7 chip, which could be the culprit.’  <>

The current issues regarding iOS 7 adds to the field of mobile tech development as a somewhat cautionary tale. It is imperative to ensure that most bugs and issues are ironed out before releasing a product, as a period of glitches and bugs can cause issues with one’s brand and consumer goodwill. The performance and user experience must always be thought of to ensure that there is a continual desire to use the product. Additionally, if this is a continuing trend, there could be effects on the economic state of mobile development and technology, as users migrate away from what is perceived as a poor platform in favor for a superior one. There may also be an increased focus on testing, discovering, and removing these issues before release.


Apps not updated for iOS 7 getting hit hard in the App Store

The Apple iOS 7 created quite a change in the look and mechanics of the iPhone, which has had quite an effect on mobile developers. uTest uses their own software called Applause to analyze over 80 million reviews for over 800,000 applications. They’ve found that app reviews that mention ‘iOS 7’ have a much lower rating then those that do not mention iOS 7.  The spread is large, with the difference being, on average, 2.81 stars compared to 3.65 stars.


This relates to the field of mobile development and the economic state of mobile development. As some applications are not yet developed for iOS 7, there will be issues with appearances or compatibility which will cause a lowering of the star rating. There can be a drastic drop in rating while an app is still being updated. With a poor rating, users will obviously seek out a different application. This could have the effect of losing users, loosing revenue from downloads, and  being out competed by a differing app in a highly competitive market. This shows the importance of updating applications as soon as possible to ensure that there is not a monetary cost to developers.