• Apple Apologizes For Messy Maps
    Doing damage control, Apple CEO Tim Cook is apologizing for the company’s glitchy Maps service and even directing users to download rival mapping services. Calling the move “unusual,” Reuters writes: “Apple is typically loathe to tout rival services and the contrite apology by Cook is an indication of how Apple is changing under the chief executive who took over last year from co-founder Steve Jobs just before his death.” What’s more, Cook's suggestion that Apple users download other map apps, represents an “about-turn for Apple, which had introduced its service as a direct challenge to the popular service offered by …
  • IPads Drive Most Tablet Traffic
    The latest tablet usage figures are in, and -- surprise, surprise -- the iPad accounts for nearly of all related Web traffic. Through mid-September, Apple's tablet represented 98.1% of 29.5 million unique impressions over 1,200 sites, according to Onswipe. The digital publishing tool developer also found that Apple’s popular device was responsible for 54.5% of traffic from all mobile devices. “Digging deeper into the results, iPad users spent 56.9 percent more time per web surfing session than iPhone owners,” Apple Insider points out.  
  • Gov. Puts Child-Tracking On Notice
    The government is reportedly ready to drop the hammer on data-driven, kid-focused online marketing. “The moves come at a time when major corporations, app developers and data miners appear to be collecting information about the online activities of millions of young Internet users without their parents’ awareness,” The New York Times reports. In response to growing privacy concerns, The Federal Trade Commission is moving to overhaul rules, which experts say have not kept pace with the growth of digital marketing tactics. 
  • Amazon Goes Green With Vine.com
    Balancing out its ecommerce empire, Amazon.com is going after environmentally conscious consumers with Vine.com. “Vine will sell everything from cleaning supplies to baby accessories, beauty supplies and clothes -- as long as they are green,” The New York Times’ Bits blog reports. Vine is part of Quidsi, a network of ecommerce sites -- including Diapers.com, Wag.com, and YoYo.com -- which Amazon bought in 2010. Catering to other civic-minded shopping trends, Bits reports, Vine features sections stocked with fair trade products, as well as products made within 100 miles of a shopper’s home. 
  • Spotting The "Next Big Thing"
    The Wall Street Journal just released its annual ranking of the top 50 venture-capital-backed companies. Before you get too excited, however, WSJ warns that the "Next Big Thing" is more likely to be a maker of humdrum Web plumbing than some flashy startup. “The top three ranked companies are all business-product makers,” WSJ reports. They include Genband, a supplier of voice-over-Internet-protocol technology; Xirrus, a provider of wireless networking equipment; and Tabula, which makes semiconductors for electronic products.  
  • Amazon, Apple Battle Over "App Store" Name
    Amazon.com is asking a federal judge to drop Apple's false advertising claim, which appeared in a lawsuit challenging the online retailer's use of the "app store" name. “The claim is part of a March 2011 trademark lawsuit in which Apple … accused Amazon of misusing its ‘App Store’ name to solicit developers for a mobile software download service,” Reuters reports. In the new filing with the U.S. District Court in Oakland, California, Amazon argues that the term "app store" has become so generic that its use could not constitute false advertising. 
  • Report: Google Maps Coming To iOS
    So, about that Google maps application for Apple -- the one consumers have been clamoring for since Apple released a new version of its iOS operating system with a glitchy Apple-made maps service. It’s on its way – but not for several months, sources tell The New York Times’ Bits blog. “Google is developing a maps application for iPhone and iPad that it is seeking to finish by the end of the year,” Bits reports. What’s the hold up? According to Bits, Google was caught off guard when Apple decided to build a new application for iOS to replace the …
  • News Corp. Papers Soften On Search Engines
    In a major about-face for Rupert Murdoch and his media empire, News International’s The Times will now let search engines index article summaries. That wasn’t the case back in May 2010 when News Corp.’s The Times vowed to block search engines from indexing its stories -- “believing,” as paidContent explains, “it must remove all possibility of free access as it introduced digital payments.” That said, “Don’t bet on the ‘wall’ coming down entirely,” paidContent adds. “This is a try-before-you-buy offer.”
  • Barnes & Noble Enters Tablet Tussle
    On Tuesday, when Barnes & Noble announced plans for a Nook-based video store, analysts noted that the existing Nook didn’t support video. Solving that problem, B&N on Wednesday unveiled two new, video-friendly tablets: Nook HD and Nook HD+. “If you’re getting a sense of deja vu [regarding the news], it might be because you followed the Amazon event … a few weeks ago, at which the company unveiled its own, new, HD display, seven- and nine-inch tablets,” AllThingsD notes. The Nook HD is a seven-inch tablet, and is expected to retail for $199, while the Nook HD+ is a larger, …
  • Apple Keeps Google Maps In The Dark
    When is Apple going to cave in, and accept Google Maps as an application in its App Store? Your guess is as good as Eric Schmidt’s, Google's executive chairman told reporters, this week. Once a standard feature of Apple’s mobile operating system, the mobile phone maker recently dropped Google Maps in favor of its own service for iOS 6. Users, however, quickly expressed their displease with Apple's mapping service, which, as Reuters reports, “is based on Dutch navigation equipment and digital map maker TomTom NV's data, and contains glaring geographical errors and lacks features that made Google Maps so popular.”
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