Apple fans, developers welcome iCloud

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apple thumb Apple fans, developers welcome iCloudApple Inc took a big step toward getting people to store and access their data on the Internet as CEO Steve Jobs emerged from medical leave to present the iCloud music-streaming service.

A thin Jobs walked out on Monday (June 6) to a standing ovation from the more than 5,000 Apple faithful at its Worldwide Developers’ Conference, outlining a service that could further untether users who rely on storing their data on home computers even as

they walk around with more and more mobile devices.

‘The vision that I heard presented this morning was so compelling and so unifying in terms of understanding how people use a combination of desktop and mobile devices that I really think that Apple has nailed it on the head,’ said developer Joe Wein.

Systems manager Dave Kaminsky was excited about the new developments but had some reservations about the cloud.

‘How do we keep our secure IP from going out to the cloud?’ he asked.

Developer Joe Pezzillo said the iCloud confirmed Apple’s commitment to the end users of its devices.

‘Right out of the gate, (it) is looking like it’s going to be extremely competitive with what other people are offering and should be a real boon for users. I mean, ultimately the thing that we saw to day is that Apple has recommitted itself, or continues to have its commitment toward end users and it’s trying to do the best possible things for them on all the different devices and now in the cloud,’ he said.

Jobs, a pancreatic cancer survivor whose decision to headline the event assuaged some concerns on Wall Street about his health, said nothing about his health, but strode onstage after James Brown’s seminal soul classic ‘I Got You (I Feel Good)’ blasted over the sound system.

‘We think this solution is our next big insight. Which is, we’re going to demote the PC and the Mac to just be a device, just like an iPhone, an iPad or an iPod Touch. And we’re going to move the digital hub, the center of your digital life, into the cloud. Because all these new devices have communications built into them, they can all talk to the cloud whenever they want,’ he said of the iCloud, which lets users play their music and get access to their data from any Apple device — a crucial capability for users increasingly accustomed to performing tasks on the move.

Jobs looked frail, but it didn’t worry the conference attendees.

‘Honestly, to me he looks the same as he looked last year and the year before. I hope his health is improving. But he’s a great speaker. I don’t know how much he’s involved in the day-to-day, but I love listening to him speak,’ said Kaminsky

‘I don’t think that he is letting his personal medical struggles get in the way of executing his vision, so I was very impressed by that as well,’ said Wein.

Monday was only the second appearance by Jobs in public on his company’s behalf since he went on medical leave in January. He shared the spotlight, letting his executive team showcase new features in Apple’s mobile and computer operating software, before returning to the stage to launch the iCloud.

Story source: www.bigpond.com

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Apple, Android, RIM in Tight Struggle to Lead Smartphone Market

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nielsen smartphone os jun nov jan11 thumb Apple, Android, RIM in Tight Struggle to Lead Smartphone MarketThe race for the lead in US smartphone operating system (OS) consumer market share is tighter than it has ever been, according to November 2010 data from The Nielsen Company. Nielsen research indicates the popularity of the Android OS among those who purchased a smartphone in the last six months (41%) makes it the leading OS among recent acquirers, while Apple iOS retains a slim lead in overall market share.

As mentioned above, Android captured a roughly 41% share of Americans who had acquired a smartphone in the last six months in November 2010, well ahead of number two Apple iOS (about 27%). Both of these OS platforms grew in popularity among this demographic from June 2010 (27.5% and 21%, respectively).

In contrast, RIM Blackberry lost close to half its formerly leading share of recent acquirers in that same time period. While 35% of recent smartphone acquirers used the RIM Blackberry OS in June 2010, only about 19% did in November 2010, placing it a distant third.

nielsen smartphone os share jun nov jan11.thumbnail Apple, Android, RIM in Tight Struggle to Lead Smartphone MarketDespite its surge among recent acquirers, when it comes to overall consumer market share, Android OS (about 26%) is still behind Apple iOS (close to 29%). RIM Blackberry’s position is less clear. Its share (also about 26%) puts it within the margin of error of both Apple iOS and Android. In other words, RIM remains statistically tied with both Apple for first and Android for third. Apple’s clear lead over Android notwithstanding, Nielsen says this race might still be too close to call.

However, RIM Blackberry has lost its clear number one position in June 2010 (34%), while Android has gained more than 50% market share from 15% in the same time period.

nielsen recent v total smartphone jun nov jan11.thumbnail Apple, Android, RIM in Tight Struggle to Lead Smartphone MarketAll three smartphone OS leaders, Apple iOS, RIM Blackberry and Android, are benefiting from strong demand for smartphones. In November, 45% of recent acquirers chose a smartphone over a feature phone, while 31% of all consumers owned a smartphone.

Growth in smartphone ownership among both overall consumers and recent acquirers grew briskly from June to August 2010 and then moderated between September and November 2010.

A leading 29% of smartphone application publishers say they will begin supporting the Android platform next year, according to the Millennial Media November 2010 Mobile Mix report. This outdistances the second-most-popular new smartphone app platform for next year, iPad (20%), by a healthy margin. Twenty percent of smartphone app publishers also plan to begin supporting Windows Phone7 next year. No other platform has anywhere close to this level of planned new support, with RIM coming in a distant fourth (12%).

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iPad Owners Valuable to Advertisers

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iPad owners demonstrate a number of demographic trends that make them valuable to advertisers, according to research from The Nielsen Company.

iPad Owners Skew Younger, Male
iPad owners skew younger and more male than owners of many other portable computing devices. Sixty-five percent of them are male and 63% of them are younger than the age of 35.

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In terms of likelihood to be male, the only device researched by Nielsen that even approaches the iPad is the Sony Playstation Portable (PSP), with 62% male ownership. In terms of age, iPad owners skew slightly older than iPod Touch owners (66% younger than 35) and PSP owners (68% younger than 35).

iPad Owners Open to Ads
iPad owners show rates of advertising receptiveness that are favorable compared to iPhone owners and overall connected device owners. In particular, iPad owners have positive response rates roughly double those of iPhone and overall connected device owners in the areas of clicking on ads that incorporate multimedia events, enjoying ads with interactive features, clicking on simple text ads, finding ads on their connected device new and interesting, liking to see what connected device ads can do, and enjoying viewing connected device ads.

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iPad Owners More Likely to Make Ad-related Purchases
Compared to overall connected device owners, after viewing a connected device ad, iPad owners are more likely to make a purchase via PC (36% compared to 27%), make a store purchase (24% compared to 10%), make a telephone purchase (12% compared to 7%) and make a direct purchase via connected device (8% compared to 5%).

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40% of iOS Device Users Make $75K-plus
In other good news for advertisers, about 50% of both iPad and iPhone users earn $75,000 or more annually, according to other recent Nielsen research. Within this income bracket, slightly more iPad users than iPhone users earn more than $100,000 annually.

In contrast, about 30% of all mobile subscribers earn more than $75,000 annually, with a much smaller proportion earning $100,000 or more than the proportion of iOS device users. Divided into featurephone and smartphone users, the income demographics of featurephone users are similar to those of overall mobile subscribers. However, about 45% of smartphone users (which includes iOS device users) earn $75,000 or more annually, with roughly the same proportion earning more than $100,000 annually as iOS device users.

About the Data: Nielsen’s new Connected Devices Playbook surveys more than 5,000 consumers who already own a tablet computer, eReader, netbook, media player or smartphone, including 400 iPad owners.

How iPad Usage is Shaping Up

In the UK, 24% of iPad owners say it’s their primary entertainment device

With iPads now in the hands of millions, studies have begun to examine how the superhyped tablet is fitting into real life, and whether the opportunity for publishers and advertisers is as big as they hoped.

Qualitative research from Ball State University examined how attitudes toward iPads changed after owning one for 24 hours. According to the report, “A Play Date with the iPad,” study participants found the iPad was best for leisure activities. Content creation was too difficult on the device but ideal for content consumption.

iPad users were impressed with applications optimized for the device, especially iBooks, Apple’s ereader app. They emphasized its value as an entertainment device—which meant some were not as interested in owning one because they felt they did not have a need for a new entertainment-based screen. Some productivity-oriented participants considered the tablets inefficient.

In the UK, a survey by copywriting firm Cooper Murphy Webb found that iPad owners had taken to the device in a big way, also for entertainment purposes. More than two in five said they used the tablet at least 10 hours weekly, and almost a quarter said it had become their primary entertainment device, ahead of TV and trailing PCs by just 9 percentage points.

Primary Entertainment Device Among UK iPad Owners, Aug 2010 (% of respondents)

The iPad was considered the No. 1 delivery method for newspapers and magazines, and its popularity for books was even greater: 41% of iPad owners preferred to read on the device, vs. 36% who liked hard copies better. iPads were also the top gaming device for owners of the tablets, beating out consoles by 2 percentage points.

Preferred Delivery Method for Reading Newspapers/Magazines Among UK iPad Owners, Aug 2010 (% of respondents)

Most users didn’t find iPads very portable, though. More than 60% said they rarely or never took their iPad when they left home, while just 5% did so always.

The focus on content consumption rather than creation should be a boon for both marketers and publishers, who are hoping to generate revenues through app sales and ad support. With newspapers, magazines, books and gaming some of the top uses of the iPad thus far, the tablet is building the reputation content owners and advertisers hoped for as an entertainment-oriented device.