These few weeks’. I’ve been very busy first, very lazy afterwards, so I have something of a backlog. But here we go again.
- One thing that became clear during Breaking Development and Mobilism is that we don’t really believe in the mobile context any more. Luke Wroblewski explains it’s an overblown concept that doesn’t really help us make decisions about or sites (or apps). Worse: it may lure us into leaving out important functionality “because mobile users running for the train don’t need it.” Nonsense.
- Many online marketing efforts, such as e-mails and SEO, depend on links. And links don’t open apps. They open websites. One more reason why the web is more important than native apps. Jason Grigsby explains.
- I haven’t seen this mentioned in the foreign press at all yet, but Dutch newspaper FD reported (paywall alert; see also here) that EU Digital Agenda commissioner Neelie Kroes wants to significantly reduce the price of data roaming. From 1st of July 2012 an MB of roaming data will cost 90 cents at most, and the maximum price will drop to 70 cents a year later, and 50 cents a year after that. In comparison, right now € 2 per MB is not at all uncommon.
This is obviously an excellent idea. Between disappearing roaming
costs filthy profits and slowly diminishing SMS income, the operators will have to innovate or die off like the dinosaurs they are.
- One of the biggest obstacles to a decent download speed on mobile connections is the handing over of the connection from one mobile tower to another. Researchers believe that using GPS radios for determining your position and the accelerometer for determining your direction of travel can significantly boost download speed; up to 50%. Of course this will drain the battery faster: GPS, especially, is very costly. But it might be worthwhile to make this into a setting that the user can turn on or off at will.
- Nokia turns out to be one of the most active non-Google Android contributors.
- There is a new CSS selector performance test.
- According to StatCounter there are now more iOS computers (= iPads) than Linux computers.
- State of the Mobile Web survey results from WebDirections.
- Excellent overview of the current smartphone platform situation.
I disagree with RIM’s analysis, though: it clearly focuses on bringing its services beyond the BlackBerry platform, although it will also remain in the hardware race. But the extension of services will allow RIM to drop hardware in the future, if that turns out to be necessary.
- Very useful advice on setting up a mobile test bed. Includes long lists of phones you should consider, as well as emulators.
- MeeGo is now available for the Nokia N900.
- Charlie Stross shares some excellent thoughts on e-books (and by extension any sort of online publication).
The price of paper and ink takes up about 10 to 15% of a book price, but in the buyer’s mind it’s lots more. And that’s why people are less willing to pay for electronic versions, even though they take as much work to produce as physical books.
readers see ebooks as being less valuable than physical objects because they consistently over-value the paper-and-ink
No doubt the same goes for newspapers, music, and all the other industries that the web has broken the distribution monopoly of.
- Some rare stats about the Indian mobile market.
- Five design principles for porting iOS apps to Android:
Read the other two, as well as some notes, in the article.
- UX differences between Android and iOS are only noticed by expert Android users.
- When in doubt, Android users reach for the hard buttons.
- iOS UX elements whose purpose is unclear without iOS familiarity should be replaced by Android conventions.
- An overview of secret Opera Mini codes. I like
server:source best: it displays the current page’s source code (which resides at the server). As far as I know this makes Opera Mini the only mobile browser to have a View Source function.
- Why web apps will replace native apps. No new arguments here, but a nice summing-up from people outside web development (or native development). Distribution is the key: 50 million iOS users vs. 2 billion web users. On the other hand, access to device functionality remains a problem for now.
But they think the Google app store (for web apps for Chrome) is a good idea. I disagree. You don’t need an app store at all for distributing web apps, and the Chrome store is just more of the same.
- What about that other Apple app store, the Mac one? A Mac app developer shares some stats, which are not very good. He concludes:
The Mac app store was supposed to be a success. But maybe Mac users are too used to downloading their software? iOS users have no choice. But Mac users do.
As far as I know, Apple hasn’t released any stats on the Mac App Store since the day after it opened. Maybe that’s because they’re not that all that great.
- Michael Mace takes a long look at the Chromebook and decides it’s not really a competitor for Windows because Google’s office apps are worse than Microsoft Office. And anyone switching from Windows to ChromeOS needs office apps.
So it can’t compete with Windows. Can it compete for the hearts and minds of tablet users, which are more likely to be interested in something light and fast? I doubt it. And if neither laptop nor tablet users are interested, which market remains for ChromeOS?
I think ChromeOS has failed even before it entered the market. It’s yesterday’s solution injected into tomorrow’s market.
- Questions you absolutely must ask your [job] interviewer. Good ones.
- And what if drivers were hired like programmers?
- Have a tip for next week?