Thursday 26 January 2012


HTC returns to 'Hero' devices next year.
   HTC has decided, having ended 2011 on a bit of a downer, to refocus itself on simply a 'hero' set of devices. Instead of catering to everyone's needs as they did this year with the Sensation, Sensation XE and Sensation XL. They're hoping that just having a couple of devices will ease the confusion their Q4 2011 portfolio seemed to create amongst consumers and return to that sensational (get it!) growth they've seen over the last couple of years. Given the success Apple and Samsung have seen with a single iPhone and a single Galaxy S device a year this sounds like a good move from HTC.

Apple and Market Shares.
    Everyone knows Apple is on a route march at the moment; they're now the world's most valuable company, they're gaining marketshare left, right and centre and they briefly had more money in the bank then the US treasury last year.
   And it looks like things are getting EVEN better! And this time it looks to be at the expensive of pretty much everyone. The only piece of slightly negative news is that over the holidays the booming tablet market saw Android take 39.1% of the tablet market, but Apple still holds a huge 57.6% so there's still a long way to go to challenge Apple's superiority in that market.
   There's also been some researched conducted by Forrester and they have found that 81% of business are interested in supporting the iPad and 55% are eyeing the iPhone (intentional tongue twister there). But, it doesn't end there; it's not just the i devices which are in demand, it's the Macs as well. 63%  of companies surveyed either already support Macs or are considering it within the next year and them numbers are going to come almost wholly at the expense of Microsoft's Windows Operating System.
   One of the more intriguing stats here is that amongst older workers PC is the clear preference but amongst younger workers Apple's devices are almost twice as popular. Looks like Apple has consumer and business appeal, Steve Jobs looks to have left one behemoth of a legacy.

Nokia: Earnings reports and WP's love in.
   So after yesterday's announcement of 1.5billion S40 phones being sold, Nokia has some more stats from their latest earnings report. On the profit side things really aren't looking healthy, actually that's being really kind; they were in the red to the tune of about $1.25 billion or about a billion euros if you live this side of the pond. But, always one to remain positive Nokia has announced that they've sold over 1million Lumia devices up to today which is a respectable start.
   Although, the problems with Symbian sales diving off a cliff in all markets has damaged these figures because Nokia expected to be able to keep sales of Symbian high in emerging markets, but it seems even these markets are turning to cheap alternatives from other countries at the moment too. The company has stopped short of making any predictions for the forthcoming year because of 'instability in current markets', so essentially they have no idea how things will go this year, but fingers crossed for the Finns.
   Nokia did announce in its earnings report exactly how much Microsoft's agreement on Windows Phone has contributed to the coffers. It seems Nokia got $250 million to start with just to adopt the platform, it remains to be seen whether this was a good investment for both Microsoft and Nokia, but there's always talk of a need for a third ecosystem and it's hard to deny the appeal to some of us of a none Android/iPhone world.

WebOS' future.
   There is still hold for HP's beautiful little WebOS operating system as it will live on as an open source project and yesterday saw HP announce the timeline for this conversion plan.
   The first part of the plan is to convert the WebOS kernel to the standard Linux kernel which will give the platform access to more drivers and ultimately the opportunity to support more devices. After that progression the timeline will look like this:

  • January: Enyo 2.0 and Enyo source code; Apache License, Version 2.0
  • February: Intended project governance model; QT WebKit extensions; JavaScript core; UI Enyo widgets
  • March:  Linux standard kernel; Graphics extensions EGL; LevelDB; USB extensions
  • April: Ares 2.0; Enyo 2.1; Node services
  • July: System manager (”Luna”); System manager bus; Core applications; Enyo 2.2
  • August: Build release model; Open webOS Beta
  • September: Open webOS 1.0

   So by September fingers crossed we may well see the possibility of dual booting Android/WebOS tablets coming to the market which could in theory give WebOS some marketshare, or alternatively it could still remain dead in the water, but all the publicity WebOS has received over the last year will have created more than a few sparks of intrigue amongst Android developers.


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