IIPM Admission

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Google bullies Android Device Makers

IIPM Excom Prof. Rajita Chaudhuri's Profile

Florian Müller, Founder, FOSS Patents
Florian Müller, Founder,
FOSS Patents & Co-founder
of Rival Networks

Munich (Germany)-based Florian Müller is an award-winning IPR activist with 25 years of software industry expertise spanning across different market segments and a variety of technical & commercial areas. Müller was perhaps amongst the first IPR experts to accuse Google of copying code from Oracle for its Android OS. He shares his opinions on the subject with B&E.

B&E: Many questions have been raised over copyright issues related to Android OS. How big are these problems for Google and the handset makers?
Floriam Müller (FM): They are a big problem for Google, but a far bigger one for its device makers. Most of the time it is the device makers who get sued, not Google. There are a few cases in which Google itself is named as a defendant, most notably Oracle’s lawsuit over seven patents and various copyrights. But for the most part it’s the device makers’ problem. Indirectly, that turns it into a problem for Google because if the intellectual property situation doesn’t come under control, some device makers may drop Android. Recently there was a rumor that Motorola is developing a mobile operating system of its own. There was some speculation that Motorola – which is being sued by Apple, Microsoft and a significant number of other companies for patent infringement – could be very concerned over the intellectual problems surrounding Android as well as Google’s heavy-handed control over Android.

B&E: You mentioned that most of the time, it is the device makers who get the stick in court. Could you explain this?
FM: By my count, 42 Android-related patent infringement suits have already been filed, and only two of them (Oracle and Skyhook) target Google exclusively, while the others name device makers as defendants. Most of the time it is just device makers being dragged to court.

B&E: With the cloud of lawsuits, can Google turn Android into a cash cow?
FM: In Google’s case, the cost of resolving all of the intellectual property issues Google faces could exceed the actual revenue opportunity, possibly even by far.

B&E: If patent claims against Android build up at this rate, what is the amount we are looking for that Google might have to pay up on order of the courts?
FM: It is very hard to estimate litigation costs, but the real strategic issue for Google won’t be one-time costs such as for litigation. They will mostly be concerned about per-unit royalties that make Android-based devices more expensive, hence less competitive.

B&E: Will payouts in settling patent infringement cases show on Google’s net earnings from Android?
FM: Since Google itself is rarely sued, the impact on the net earnings of device makers will be greater than on Google’s earnings. The Oracle lawsuit could, however, require Google to pay something on the order of a billion dollars depending on the exact outcome. The extent to which Android is accused of infringement is unpredecented. 42 lawsuits in a little more than a year show that there are fundamental problems. There are definitely some Android-specific reasons, such as Google’s ‘loose management’ of intellectual property issues, that contribute greatly to this mess.

B&E: Some have even pointed to security issues related to the Android OS. Is that something which handset makers and buyers should be wary of?
FM: By emphasising that the software is “free”, Google positioned Android as the poor man’s iPhone. But the security issues come with it. The Android Market is not managed well by Google. It contains programs infected by malware. I use a Samsung Galaxy, a high-end Android phone, and I like it for the most part, but I don’t have confidence in Google’s app store and never buy anything there.

B&E: Android Market Place is not giving Google enough topline push. Are the earnings enough to sustain stable Android OS projects in future?
FM: App stores can but only be a small part of a revenue mix. In Google’s case, there’s not enough money to be made there to sustain development of an OS.

B&E: Finally, will the Andoird connection enable handset and tablet makers like HTC, Samsung, LG, Dell, Acer et al, to make money in times to come?
FM: There are about three dozen device makers who have adopted Android by now and it’s clear to me that when growth rates flatten, most of them won’t make money with Android-based devices anymore. For now the explosive growth of the smartphone market creates some short-term opportunities, but strategically those device makers are in a difficult position because Google controls the platform. Google bullies Android device makers and forces them to do what it wants. Right now the biggest problem for makers of Android-based tablet makers is a lack of demand. Android tablets are a failure so far. They also turn out to be too expensive.

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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Google is Trapped in The Android World

IIPM Prof. Arindam Chaudhuri on Internet Hooliganism

Andy Seybold, CEO, Seybold Group LLC
Andy Seybold, CEO, Seybold
Group LLC. & Member of Board
of Directors, CommNexus

An expert from the IT-obsessed state of California, Santa Barbara-based Andrew Seybold, who has served on the Motorola Research Board, IBM’s Mobile Computing Advisory Board and is a consultant to companies like RIM, HP, AT&T, Verizon, Nokia, Motorola & Qualcomm, speaks to B&E about pricing issues, and other growing concerns for Google’s Android OS.

B&E: According to UK-based research firm IHS, the Android Market saw revenue grow by 861.5% y-o-y from 2009 to 2010, but the actual dollar figures are small compared to all the other major app stores. What do you think will Google do in near future to increase revenues from apps?
Andrew Seybold (AS): The Android Market place is about those who believe that everything on the Internet should be free, free O/S, free apps. And they are not those who spend money, or desire valued content in the long-run. Therefore the Android community is going to have a tough time figuring out how to monetise apps for the devices.

B&E: Historically, apps have never really been money making machines. Will it be different with Android OS?
AS: Google itself set the stage as a free and open environment. And today, it is trying to capitalise on it. They set the bar for usage of everything free. Apple makes its money on hardware, not much on apps. The developers make more money on apps than Apple does by a long shot, going back to BREW – the first of these types of stores. Qualcomm did not make real money on apps. Its motive was to have the networks sell more devices, which in turn, sold more chipsets. Apps will never be a big money making proposition for those who run the stores. They are only used to drive other forms of business like in BREW, Apple, and even RIM. Since Google has no other portion of the ecosystem in which to make revenue, they are at a real disadvantage over the others who use the apps to drive other profit centres of their business.

B&E: Paid apps have lagged on Android for a number of reasons. One of them has been inadequate billing options. But Google has worked on this front, Do you see this as a move from Google to monetise its Android OS?
AS: It wasn’t until last month that Google added the ability for consumers to pay for Android apps through its AT&T plan. Android is about consumer devices and usage. Google hasn’t made it easy to purchase apps and even adding more ways to purchase apps is not going to make Android a money-making operation.

B&E: In case, one day, Android no longer remains OPEN & FREE, how will the handset makers react?
AS: If Android changes its business model, the handset vendors will lose interest in it.

B&E: Fragmentation of the OS – is that an issue for app-devlopers?
AS: Handset makers are constantly making changes to Android, which, in turn becomes a headache for developers. Apple is the leader – one OS controlled by them, across multiple platforms, easy to build apps for. Android developers have to understand the various differences of the OS supported by the different handset vendors and build applications for multiple flavours of the OS.

B&E: Because of its open nature, Google does not make money from licensing the OS, the way that Microsoft does. Do you see Google taking a chance with licensing its OS soon?
AS: That would kill Android. The business model that Google has set in motion is no business model. And the next thing that could kill Android is the fact that since it is open it is ripe for hackers to go after, Android will be their favourite platform. Setting a price which is too high on a product can be corrected by lowering the price. Setting a price for an OS first at zero, and then trying to monetise it later, is not a proven business model and is subject to failure. Google has trapped itself in the Android world.

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Friday, June 24, 2011

Is Android a Double-Disaster for Google?

IIPM Prof Arindam Chaudhuri on Dictatorship of the sycophants

First, it Sucks-in Huge Dollars and Time. Then, it Blesses The Maker (and Partners) with Patent Infringement Lawsuits and mere Crumbs in the name of Revenues. The Android Project has Proven a Double-Trouble in Google land. The OS’ free Platform Delivery model and its Over-Dependence on Apps, has clearly turned out a case of “Wasted Potential”. Will Google stop Playing Santa, and prove a Lost-Case-Won? Or will Obstinacy get The Better of Logic?

ash” is a four-letter word which companies love to swear by. “Free” too, is another four-letter word. Only this, consumers love and companies hate. And this admixture of the two four-letter words is what makes for a shotgun wedding across corporate boardrooms and R&D labs. Google Inc’s Android project is the biggest example of such a marriage. Android OS, which has helped many handset and tablet makers live to see the present (like HTC, Motorola and Dell), has earned global fame (read 67.23 million handsets sold in 2010, as per Gartner, accounting for a 22.7% market share). In the process, the OS platform has become powerful. As Gartner estimates, the platform will become the #1 mobile OS by the time this very year ends, with a 38.7% market share. Volumes, yes. But it is turning out to be a “much fame, no gain” recital for Google. Trouble is, Google has little to earn from Android – its “free” and open-source form proving to be a failed Parthian shot for the Mountain View giant. Over $1.5 billion has been burnt in the labs to develop the OS (with millions more being added to developmental costs every year), and the net earnings, six years post-acquisition of the OS maker, don’t seem to be justifying the dollars and the half-a-decade of lab work. Some even argue that Google’s mobile advertising revenue which stood at $1 billion annually (as per an October 2010 report by CNN), makes the Android a cash-cow already. Wrong. During the past 2 years, the Android platform has been able to generate just $243 million for Google. Out of this, only $130 million have been made as Internet ad-revenues (the company’s breadwinner which accounted for 97% of its topline in 2010). In short, Google’s Android OS, despite being the OS platform present on one of every four handsets sold in the world during the past year, accounted for only 6.5% of the total ad-revenues that Google earned through mobility devices. Translation – 93.5% of the earnings from mobile Internet ad-clicks for Google came from non-Android phones. This is a big cause of concern.

It was an obituary which tagged Alfred Nobel a “Merchant of death” that persuaded him to work for peace. Google at the moment, is in need of such a mind-changing note, which can force it to relinquish its suicidal Android pricing & sales strategy. So, with no cynicism about the obsession with which the company has forked out billions to make Android a success amongst handset & tablet-makers who love what is “free”, question is – will we see a price tag on the platform soon? Many doubt it. Problem is, if it does not happen soon, the overwhelming fired-up start story will only lead to a thin (and insufficient) stream to support investments to nurture Google’s mobile dreams.

That Google is turning on the heat comes as a relief. IMarket Share Growth of Android OS by 2012n the past couple of months, it has communicated to major carriers and handset makers that it will not allow any more tweaking of the Android platform without permission. This will help put an end to all forms of fragmentation on the Android platform. It will also solve the problem of many apps on the Android Market Place not being compatible on all Android devices. Though this comes as a shocker to many who were initially both happy and impressed by Google’s benevolence to allow royalty-free usage and fragmentation of the platform, this may just be a warning flare that Google is over and done with the idea of saving others (read HTC, Motorola, Acer and others) billions in R&D costs (that the others would have had to otherwise spend to create their own OS) and be happy with the dimes themselves. Till date, every time Google plans a release of a version of Android (six such versions have been released so far), it shares the initial secret platform with only a particular handset maker and chipmaker first, who then tweak the platform accordingly (Google chose HTC & Qaulcomm for its inaugural Cupcake version, and Nvidia & Motorola for its latest Honeycomb format). This makes it impossible for any handset maker to prepare a platform where all the apps prepare by developers for Android can work hassle-free. This way, it has been estimated that of the 294,738 apps that are available in the market place (as on May 1, 2011), at best 30% can be run hassle-free in all Android handsets. In other words, its very Open Source nature which led to the initial Android wildfire may prove too damaging for its sustained growth due to fragmentation, perhaps even crushing Google’s hopes to make it big in the mobile OS category after the hardware fiasco called Nexus One phone.

Issue is: if you are giving “exclusive rights” to handset makers, why do social service for all the bells and whistles that third party handsets can flaunt? A minimum royalty will not disturb the price elasticity. You make HTC a brand again, and you charge nothing for the very product it is selling. You give Motorola and Acer shots at mobiles & tablets, and you do so ex-gratia. We ask – what moral obligation got Google to give-in to the temptation? Shareholders surely deserve a greater show of capitalism.

Perhaps – and it remains a big question – Google is waiting for the day when the count of Android handsets sold crosses the threshold mark. This could be as early as the first quarter of 2013 (Gartner estimates that more than 310 million Android handsets - 310.09 million - will be sold in 2012, accounting for 49.2% of the mobile OS market). So, where does the company begin? As Rajan Anandan, MD and VP for Sales & Operations, Google India, tells B&E, “We have plans to separate the OS and differentiate Android for tablets and smartphones.” So the plan is set – first create a differentiated Android for the two product categories. Then perhaps try and charge licensing royalty on at least one of them. If Google takes the lower risk path, it will be the tablet wars which will get hotter soon. But it’s easier said than done. Experts doubt whether the world of handset and tablet makers will accept a marriage with a dowry clause. It will be an awkward stage to perform on. Truth is – Google’s very business model defies economics. A price which is too high can be corrected by lowering it. Setting a price for an OS at zero, and then trying to monetise it later, is not a proven business model and is subject to failure. Indeed. And that is another reason why Google may keep Android as it is. There is a historical analogy here. In the early 1990s this is what killed Gopher, an early competitor to the “www”. When the University of Minnesota (that owned Gopher) announced that would charge for its server software, commercial Gopher developers abandoned the service because they did not want to risk working on a platform for which they might some day be subject to fees. Google’s case is not different.

The Android story is a cloud with no silver lining. The case with Google is no different. Even the new OS the company is planning for netbooks, christened the Chrome OS (which again, will be “free”; the first launch of such a netbook will be from Acer later this year), is bound to be a repeat of the Android mistake. Only this time, it may not even find buyers. In our interaction with J. T. Wang, Chairman and CEO of Acer, he tried to challenge our predictions, as he mentioned how Acer is already in a leading position in this open platform tablet market and how these tablets have received numerous praises from the retail channels and telecom operators. But New York-based Sascha Segan, Managing Editor (Mobility) at The PC Magazine, dismisses Wang’s optimism in a flat tone. “Chrome OS is a dead end. It mostly exists because Google wants an OS play on Intel-based laptops, but nobody really knows what to do with it. Chrome OS is a stub. No consumer wants a crippled laptop that requires network access for most functions; that’s been tried and has failed many times,” says Segan to B&E. Forget about success, even mistakes can be replicated. For Google, the margin of error gets bigger and it comes in the form of the Chrome OS – free and far from being a best-selling OS.

Where Google is also going wrong is the app market. All OS and app developers rely on the earnings from the sale of both the OS and their apps. Google at present is earning from only the apps on the Android platform (which as stated earlier, has its own share of problems due to fragmentation). But, for Google, expecting the Android app market to give a fat paycheque is taking a walk to the bank in its dreams. Why? Even when it comes to apps, Android runs a discount show. Says New York-based Fred Krom, Analyst at Goldman Sachs to B&E, “Google collects a 30% share from Android market app purchases, which we believe ends up being low margin, and we estimate at least a 40% share from mobile in-app advertising via AdMob.” The end result is, the current earning from the app market is not enough to even please its developers. Google may carry on with the app project with its massive bank of free cash holding ($34.98 billion as of end-2010), but trouble is – for the developers, sustainability is being questioned. As of date, the annual Android developer income stands at just 6% of Apple iOS developer income, with an annual growth rate which is just 9% higher as compared to iOS’. In other words, the gap between the two is getting larger every year, and this is not good news for Andy’s brainchild. If Google has to record a topline of anywhere in excess of $60 billion (Apple made $65.23 billion in FY2010, while Microsoft earned $62.48 billion – and both rely minimally on their app worlds), it has to think beyond apps. To put this in numbers, let us consider the king of apps – Apple. Sales through Apple’s App Store reached $1.78 billion in 2010. Huge? Actually, this represents just 2.73% of its revenues during the year. Google on the other hand made just $102 million from its Android Market Place (as per a February 2011 report by UK-based research firm IHS) – that makes for 0.35% of its FY2010 revenues. There is another problem with mobile apps – that of “free” being best. [When was the last time you actually purchased an app? And even if you did, how many in your peer group have been regular at downloading “paid” apps? Your answer is our concern.]

As of end-2010, there were 74.67 million Android users in the world. Going by how much Google made from apps last year, the average revenue per user (ARPU) translates to $1.37. Even if the ARPU was to grow to the $2 mark over the next two years (which is doubtful, until Google clears the mess created by compatibility issues, that is ailing its world of its apps on all versions of the OS), by end-2012, Google would on the highest side earn $1.13 billion from sales of apps by end-2012 (estimates of 564.63 million Android handsets sold by 2012 as per Gartner; calculation assumes all users to be active). This would still account for just 2.53% of Google’s total revenues for that year (estimated to be $44.24 billion as per Credit Suisse). On the other hand, had Google charged a minimal $15 from licensing of its OS on each handset from day one, (much below the industry standard of $30, and a viable option for handset makers), we would have been sitting on projections of the collections through licence fees, crossing $8.47 billion by 2012, and $29.31 billion by 2015. On the other hand, sales of apps at $2 ARPU would still fall short of the $4 billion mark by 2015. The problem is that if Android developers can’t make money, they will leave, users will leave, and Google will lose. So, low earnings from apps is a concern because Google wants developers to find Android an attractive platform. $29.31 billion by 2015 on one hand, less than $4 billion on the other – what is Google thinking?

Patent infringement allegations and litigation costs are also not giving Android and its social patron Google peaceful dreams. 42 lawsuits in a little more than a year show that there are fundamental problems. Forget Oracle, Microsoft, Apple and the big names of Silicon Valley, even the likes of a company like Bedrock Computer Technologies (an outfit which is inactive as a company at present) took Google to court for patent infringement on a particular technology used in Android’s Linux kernel. As a ruling, Google has been ordered to pay $5 million for IPR violation. Dirtying hands is one thing – forcing others to become a victim, is another. The worst part about Google being dragged to court for all of Android OS’ wrongdoings is that other handset and tablet makers face the music too. In March 2010, HTC was dragged to court by Apple which claimed that the Taiwanese manufacturer had infringed on 20 of its patents related to the user interface, the inner and outer architecture of its Android powered handsets. In November 2010, it was Microsoft’s turn to get famous, when it accused handset-maker Motorola in a US district Court in Washington, that its Android handsets (Droid 2 and Charm) had infringed on 9 of its patents related to syncing emails, contact list, calendar et al. Even tablet makers are not spared in this game of civil suits. In March this year, Microsoft filed another case in the Washington court and in the International Trade Commission against Android OS tablet and e-reader seller Barnes and Nobel (and its device suppliers Foxconn and Inventec) for infringing on its patents. Such cases where Google makes other manufacturers liable is a serious cause of concern if Android (and even the Chrome OS) is to find more manufacturers joining hands. As of date, of the 42 Android-related patent infringement suits, only two of them (Oracle and Skyhook) target Google exclusively. The others name device makers among the defendants – strangely, most of the time, just device makers. While speaking to B&E from Munich, Founder of Foss Patents & an Intellectual Property expert, says, “Google bullies Android device makers and forces them to do what it wants. Copyright issues are a big problem for Google, but a far bigger one for device makers. Indirectly that turns it into a problem for Google because if the IPR situation doesn’t come under control, some device makers may drop Android. Recently there was a rumor that Motorola is developing a mobile OS of its own and that Motorola, which is being sued by Apple, Microsoft and a number of others on its Android OS handsets, could be very concerned over the IPR problems surrounding Android as well as Google’s heavy-handed control over Android.” In terms of litigation costs, since Google itself is rarely sued, the impact on the earnings of device makers will be greater. That however does not mean that for Google, litigation costs will be an easy rock to swallow. [For instance, the Oracle lawsuit could require Google to pay at least $1 billion – 311.5% more than what Android has earned till date!]

But, all is not lost. Not yet. There are some silver linings on the horizon. Perhaps Google is thinking of laying out a strategy to work its way out of the well once 2013 sets in, and mobile Internet (and mobile advertising) has taken off completely, as Manhattan-based Spencer Wang, Analyst at Credit Suisse tells B&E, “Google is in the process of building a comprehensive mobile presence, which would place it (along with Apple) at the centre of the mobile Internet ecosystem. Mobile Internet is an incremental opportunity for Google, as opposed to a risk.”

The company also has to rework some of its old Android OS strategies, while laying the ground for some fresh ones. One of which, is to use Android and become a virtual telco. The other one, of course – which the company is famously secretive about at the moment – is to work on monetising its Android platform. Google is an 800-pound gorilla, and Android so far has gone strong in volumes. It’s the cash box which worries the new CEO Larry Page, with litigation & fragmentation issues only adding to his headache. But Page has to realise that as long as Android is Open Source, matters will not improve. The solution to get rid of this double trouble disaster (of increasing investments and unimpressive payoffs) is to repudiate the dual-doctrine of delighting consumers and loving volumes. Playtime is over in Google-land and ‘nerd’ will not do – it has to be an ‘shareholder-pleasing CEO’ taking charge. And Page has to act fast. Question is – which four-letter word will he finally settle for?

Steven Philip Warner

Monday, June 13, 2011

Highest Radiation Mobile phones launched

Over the last few years, several studies have found cellphones to increase the risk of brain cancer and dementia. However, most of such studies have remained largely inconclusive. Now to add fuel to the raging fire comes a World Health Organisation's study. According to WHO’s cancer experts, mobile phone users may be at increased risk from brain cancer and should use texting and free-hands devices to reduce exposure.

In India too, recently a government panel findings highlighted the health hazards of excessive mobile phone usage. The inter-ministerial committee named loss of memory, lack of concentration, digestive and sleep disturbances as some of the ill-effects caused by mobile phone radiation.

But, ever wondered which smartphones have higher radiation than others? CNET published a list of phones with high levels of RF radiation. The list includes some of the popular smartphone models from companies like LG, Motorola and Sony Ericsson.

The study is based on SAR or Specific Absorption Rate. SAR is a way to measure the amount of radio frequency (RF) energy absorbed by the body when using the handset.

Here are top 15 from the list.

Motorola Bravo
Motorola Bravo

This Android-based phone tops the list of phones with highest level of radiation. Sporting a 3.7-inch WVGA display, Motorola Bravo has a 3 megapixel autofocus camera, 512 MB RAM, aGPS, accelerometer and Bluetooth.

The phone's Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) is 1.59

Motorola Droid 2 Global
Motorola Droid 2 Global
No. 2 on the list is Android-powered Motorola Droid 2 Global which comes with QWERTY Keyboard. The phone has a TI OMAP 3630 1.2 GHz processor, 3D graphics accelerator, 5 megapixel auto focus Camera, 3.7-inches capacitive touchscreen display, 8GB internal storage and expandable memory upto 32GB.

The phone's Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) is 1.58.

Sony Ericsson Satio
Sony Ericsson Satio
Sony Ericsson's 12 megapixel shooter Satio too figures among the phone's with highest level of radiation. The phone feature 256MB RAM, 3.5-inch touchscreen display, aGPS, Bluetooth with A2DP and USB 2.0.

The phone's Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) is 1.56.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 Mini ProSony Ericsson Xperia X10 Mini Pro

One of Sony Ericsson's flagship launch last year, Xperia X10 Mini Pro, is at No. 4 on the list. Sporting a petite 2.6-inch touchscreen display, the phone has a QWERTY keyboard, 5 megapixel camera with autofocus, LED flash and aGPS.

The Android-based phone's Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) is 1.55.

Kyocera Jax S1300

Kyocera Jax S1300

Next on the list is Kyocera Jax S1300 with a 1.8-inch display. The phone's Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) is 1.55

Motorola i335

Motorola i335

The thin bar-style Motorola i335 sports a 1.5-inch display. The phone's Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) is 1.53.

Motorola i335 doesn't come with camera, 3G support and music player.

Motorola DefyMotorola Defy
The Android-based 3G smartphone Defy too figures among the phones with high level of radiation. The 3G-enabled phone is equipped with 3.7-inch touchscreen, 5 megapixel camera, and expandable memory up to 32GB.

The candybar phone offers support for aGPS, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, USB 2.0 and 3.5mm headphone connector.

The phone's Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) is 1.52.

Motorola GraspMotorola Grasp
Next one too is from the Motorola's camp. The candybar Motorola Grasp features a 2.2-inch display, 1.3 megapixel camera with digital zoom, QWERTY keyboard and stereo Bluetooth. The phone has basic multimedia features.

Grasp's Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) is 1.52.

ZTE Salute

ZTE Salute

Featuring a 2.4-inch display, ZTE Salute's Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) is 1.52. The phone offers messaging options (text, picture and voice messaging), mobile Email, Instant Messaging, microUSB 2.0 and Bluetooth.

LG Rumor 2

LG Rumor 2

At No. 10 is LG Rumor 2 with 1.51 Specific Absorption Rate (SAR). The phone has side-sliding QWERTY keyboard, 1.3 megapixel camera, Bluetooth, micro USB and 2.5mm headphone connector.

Sanyo Vero
Sanyo VeroSanyo's flip phone Vero also has a high radiating with a SAR count of 1.49.

The mobile phone comes with a 2.4-inch QVGA main display and a secondary monochrome display. It also sports a 1.3-megapixel camera with digital zoom lens and video recording capabilities.

Other key features of the clamshell includes Web browsing with Google search, Bluetooth connectivity, SMS threaded text messaging, speakerphone, multiple language support.

Motorola Droid 2Motorola Droid 2
Another Motorola Droids on the list, Motorola Droid 2 has a SAR of 1.49. According to the survey, the Droid X just avoided making the list with a 1.43 SAR rating.

Motorola Droid is just another high-end Android smartphone with 5 megapixel camera with dual LED flash, 3.7 inch display, 16GB inbuilt memory, WiFi, GPS, slidout QWERTY keypad, speech recognition, Google applications and high speed data connectivity.

Motorola DroidMotorola Droid

The older Droid is tied with the newer Droid 2 with a SAR count of 1.49.

Motorola refreshed its original Droid phone with Droid 2, a device with a better keyboard, Android 2.2 Froyo operating system and a faster 1-GHz processor.

HTC DesireHTC Desire

Android-based HTC Desire too has high radiation. The smartphone has a SAR of 1.48.

On specs front, HTC Desire Desire weighs around 135 grams, has a 3.7-inch display, 1-GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, HTC Sense and 5 megapixel camera.

LG Chocolate TouchLG Chocolate Touch

LG Chocolate Touch is the second LG phone on the list. The LG smartphone has a SAR of 1.47.

The smartphone's specsheet includes touchscreen, VZ navigator and 3.2 megapixel camera. The smartphone enables users to access social networking sites and add pictures and photos. LG Chocolate Touch also sports of Dolby sound.

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Monday, June 06, 2011

Rush Hour For The Internet

1 pm on a week day. For an office-goer aged 25-plus, one would presume it would be lunch time. Perhaps, time to connect with other colleagues or catch up with friends and associates over a meal.

Here's the revelation. The time between 1 pm and 2 pm has emerged as the 'peak hour' in terms of reach of the internet medium. It turns out, when a regular office-goer takes a break for lunch, he actually starts surfing the internet for areas of interest, whether it is emails, portals, banking or shopping.

According to IMRB International's all-India Web Audience Measurement (WAM) data for the month of March, on a base of 43.4 million users, peak hours on the internet vary for people aged 15-24 years and for those who are 25 years and above. In the 25-plus age bracket, the peak hour is between 1 pm and 2 pm with around 19 million users hooked to the net out of the total 25.4 million. This is followed by a declining trend throughout the day until mid-night.

For a youngster aged 15-24 years, the trend would be slightly different. The peak hour shows a stable trend throughout the day between 12 pm and 10-11 pm with 13.6 million users tuned in out of a total of 18 million.

Cut to a weekend, and the peak hour definition gets a little tweaked. The traffic is at its highest at around 12.30 pm for users aged 25 years and above, with about 15 million users. While for a person aged 15-24 years, the peak rush is seen more or less at the same time as his 25-plus counterpart, but there's a stable trend throughout the day with 10.7 million users.

"Internet usage starts reaching a peak from 10-11 am. For the older age groups, the usage peaks again from 1-2 pm. Internet usage in a way compliments the other media vehicles radio and television. So when radio usage starts dropping after the morning drive time, Internet usage picks up and is fairly consistent till evening 6-7 pm time band after which TV picks up," said Balendu Shrivastava, group business director, IMRB International.

It was only in November last year that IMRB International launched WAM to start measuring web rating points, similar to television rating points (TRPs) are used to measure television viewership.

According to IMRB's WAM data, E mail, search and social networking are the top three categories online. Peak hours in terms of usage would be different for each of these.

Marketers want robust measurement tool Unraveling of the peak hour for internet can assist marketers in making informed decisions on advertising. Web measurements would be useful for marketers to identify the right internet portals to use for a pre-defined target audience for a brand.
"These measurements have made what used to be gut-feel spends earlier to a more scientific approach," said Tanya Dubash, executive director & president marketing, Godrej Industries.

According to Dubash, however, the objective of using internet for most advertisers is to build engagement with the brand and not exposure to an advertisement. "Rather than defining our internet spends by peak traffic hours on the internet, we would rather drive our internet spends to placing our ad in the right environment/context that will enable an interaction for the brand with the internet user. So I would always go for an engagement /advocacy model on our internet spends rather than an exposure model based on peak traffic," said Dubash.

Notionally, the concept of peak-hour and non-peak hour already exists among marketers. Dabur India's marketing head (skin care), Sanjay Singal, said, "Even today some companies look at sending out promotion e-mailers on Fridays since they stand a better chance of grabbing greater and quality consumer eyeballs over the weekend when a person surfs the net at leisure. In fact, even with our Dabur Uveda online sales portal, we have witnessed a marked surge in visitor traffic, led mostly by working women."

Considering that internet is mainly dominated by males, young adults and city-users, Dubash said the group's endeavour is to advertise select brands relevant to this audience on the internet. "However given the growing number of mobile users who are accessing the internet, I am estimating the mobile internet to explode across audiences and make internet a viable medium to use for all our brands across all target audiences and that day to me is not too far away in India " said Dubash.

There is a growing interest among advertisers to demystify the internet medium in terms of user profiles. This has prompted market research firms to move in this direction. While IMRB has launched WAM, The Nielson Company , on the other hand, is working on an audience measuring metrics based on the convergence platform. Marketers, however, believe that the robustness of the measurement system is more important so as to instill faith in an advertiser to put his money behind the medium.

At present, ad spends are directed mainly towards the dominant media like television. Online forms merely 2 per cent of the total advertising pie.

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Saturday, June 04, 2011

Mobile application for Nokia phones is launched by The Times of India

Nokia phone users can now read The Times of India on the go. Our much-awaited application for Nokia smartphones has been available for download from Nokia's Ovi Store for the last few days and the response of readers has been overwhelming.

The app not only brings you the latest news from The Times of India's unrivalled, countrywide network of reporters, but also provides you the incisive, analytical and in-depth coverage that makes the newspaper your favourite.

Apart from national, international, business, entertainment, health, sports and technology news, the app — updated 24x7 — brings you exhaustive coverage of more than 30 Indian cities and reviews of the latest movies. It also comes with complete photo galleries covering news, entertainment and fashion.

On touch phones, you can change the text size on article pages, and share articles with friends via Facebook, Twitter, email or SMS. The application is compatible with all Nokia touch and qwerty smartphones running the Symbian^3 and S60 platforms.

Announcing the launch, Rishi Khiani, CEO of Times Internet Ltd (TIL), said: "The partnership with Nokia is important and strategic for us as both brands lead their respective segments globally. With this app, millions of Nokia owners across the globe will be able to access news on the move, updated on the hour."

Nokia India's director (marketing), Viral Oza, said: "Our partnership with The Times of India is a big step towards providing readers easy and simplified access to news from their mobile devices. The Times of India's unique content and Nokia's unparalleled reach now offer readers the chance to be completely up to date with news from India and the world, no matter where they are."

With the launch of the Nokia application, The Times of India is now present on all the popular mobile platforms. The newspaper recently launched iPhone, iPad, Android and BlackBerry apps, all of which have proved to be immensely popular. The Times of India is the only Indian newspaper to have apps for all these popular platforms.

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