Tuesday 4 December 2012

04/12/2012: Black Friday was good for Android tablets, Apple's wireless charging plans, Orange-Lookout and The Times-Asus partnerships and much more!

Black Friday seems to have been a good day for Android tablet sales.

Android tablet manufacturers had a great Black Friday
   This years Black Friday was much like any other; lots of people, lots of deals and lots of money spent. But, it seems that sales actually ended up being down 5.6% compared to last year according NPD Groups' researchers. 

   It's interesting to hear then that a grand total of 58% of Black Friday sales came from PC's, Android tablets and television sets. The reason for lower incomes this year was that  despite there actually being more devices shipped, the revenue from each one dropped quite notably. Flat screen tv's were a good example as sales numbers rose 4%, but there was a 6% drop on revenue because the average sales price to $333 from $367.

   The real news here though is that there was a heck of a lot Android tablets sold! With the amount of devices sold rising 177% from last year but, just as we saw with tvs, the prices were also suppressed with an average price of $151, down from $219, meaning that revenues only rose 91%. 
   With regard to computers; Apple's sales were flat, probably because their reductions are always strictly limited, while the majority of notebook sales, 89% to be precise, were Windows 8 devices and sold on average for $368.

Source: PC Mag Via PhoneArena.

Wireless charging from Apple?

Apple working on its own wireless charging technology

   Wireless charging is hot right now; LG, Google and Nokia are champion it at the moment, a couple of years after Palm launched it as a stand out feature on their Pre range. The only problem at the moment is that it's not really wireless. You need too physically put the phone on a charging block and let it do it's stuff, but it has to be stationary and connected.

   This is where Apple thinks it can go one better in a few years time and as such the Cupertino giants filed a patent for wireless charging technology with the USPTO. The patent is called “Wireless Power Utilization In A Local Computing Environment” and it is based around the idea of near-field magnetic resonance which pushes power to your devices from a central power unit. IntoMobile explained this perfectly when they said 'by creating some sort of an invisible bubble, your gadgets will be able to recharge without the need for cords or plugs of any kind. In other words, to recharge your device you would just have to set it down on your desk' or have it anywhere within range of the central power emitter.

   This is the future and hopefully some other companies are working on this as well!
Via IntoMobile

Orange ink a deal with Lookout for pre-installed Android security.

   If you're a resident of the UK and you treat yourself to an Android phone from Orange, T-Mobile or EE you'll soon find that they've taken the liberty of pre-installing mobile security from Lookout on your shiny new phone. This comes after the operator and the anti-malware firm inked a deal earlier this week. Lookout have said that if you get a phone from Orange in the UK, France, Spain or Slovakia in early 2013 then you'll get the little treat and it's already pre-installed on Xperia T's which are sold in France. Orange added that they may bundle premium Lookout features in some markets.

   What's interesting here is that Orange has also made a 'strategic investment' in Lookout through its Orange & Publicis venture capital operation. There's no exact word on how much they spent on this venture but, TechCrunch thinks that it may be as much as $20m (£12.5m).

   Orange Technocentre chief, Paul-François Fournier, had this to say:
"It is critical we help protect our customers, and this partnership with Lookout allows us to provide additional protection for our customers without them having to take any action, or become experts on mobile security." 
Via ZDNet

In other news:

  • Gameloft has announced that their popular Modern Combat series will see it's fourth game released pretty soon. A tweet from their Twitter page told us their release dates!

  • Evernote have announced their new app designed specifically for businesses. Unsurprisingly it's call Evernote business and it's available now! Evernote have said that there's a "number number of features and refinements that make Evernote Business a perfect tool for small and medium-sized companies and small teams within larger organizations." Check out the video below for more details!
    Via Engadget.
  • Zeptolab, the guys behind the smash hit mobile game 'Cut The Rope' will soon be releasing a new game called 'Pudding Monsters'. At the moment there's a cheeky teaser video which you can find here, but other than that there's no gameplay to show you. But, as and when a video of that lands in our inbox we will let you know!
    Via Slashgear.
  • Gmail 2.0 has been released for iPhone and iPad today! You can find all the details about the enhancements here!
  • Qualcomm has invested $120million in Sharp, presumably to get access to their IGZO technologies! You can find full details here!
  • The Times and Asus have teamed up to sell subsidised Nexus 7's to customers when they take out a subscription to The Times' online newspaper. If you're looking at getting the two separately for 18 months then that'll be £212 more than the deal the two companies are offering you here, which itself will cost you £299, only £100 more than buying the tablet on it's own! Let us know if you take advantage of this deal!
    Via Twitter.

   And finally, November's Android statistics are in with the amount of devices running each version  of Google's OS and as you can see Jelly Bean is finally starting to get a hold, probably thanks to the updates to HTC's One X's and Samsung's insanely popular Galaxy S3! Jelly Bean 4.1 is running on 5.9% of devices and 4.2 is on 0.8% but that should change as Google released more Nexus 4's into the wild!


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