• Can Amazon Really Fight iPad Magic?
    I have already snoozed my way through a couple of Android-based tablet demo units in recent months, so I admit that I greet this week's Forrester projection with some skepticism. The researchers got their expected headlines the other day in predicting Amazon's less-than-secret upcoming tablet could seriously dent the iPad juggernaut and sell 3 to 5 million units in the fourth quarter of the year. So striking and provocative did Forrester believe their prediction would be that they withheld the report for a week "out of respect for Steve Jobs," says analyst Sarah Rotman Epps.
  • Little Local Pleasures: Letting Your Fingers Do the Tapping
    There is a lot of waiting that goes into summer. Whether it is sitting in airports or just plopping down in a chair at Lucky's or Express while you wait for wife and daughter to shop at leisure, I find myself spending more time with my iPhone deck than I have in recent months. Generally in these outings I am only needed at the tail end of the experience, so there is time to kill remembering all of the cool stuff I downloaded and stopped using long ago. Perhaps it is the draw of the iPad each evening, or just …
  • The Transient Crowd: No Matter Where You Go, There You Are
    Entrepreneur Jeff Jackel tells me that he came up with the idea for a "transient" location-based social network while sitting in the left-field bleachers at a Los Angeles Angels game. "Everyone around me was on their phone. I wondered, why can't I connect with the other 40,000 people who are doing this, and why can't the Angels connect with me right now and do something with us here right now? That is what basically got in my head."
  • A Summit of Data: Test, Measure, Repeat
    There are many themes and individual insights that occurred to me as I red-eyed it back home from this week's Mobile Insider Summit. Don't let the perfect get in the way of the test, was one mantra I kept hearing explicitly and implicitly in many presentations and discussions. It was remarkable that Michael Callahan of Century21, Beth Murphy of Travelocity, Jeff Haddon of OfficeMax, BJ Emerson of Tasti D-Lite and Jeff Cloud of mall owners GGP all discussed their brand's mobile approaches in historical terms, as iterative journeys. No one was trying to convey the impression that they really "get …
  • Missed Opportunities: Good Code Hunting
    "I don't think anyone else here is doing this," my wife complains, as I take another picture of a wall at the local mall. We are on a QR hunt, testing out on her the QR code prompts that have now started to spring up like skin infestations on the signage around retail storefronts. "You look like a building inspector recording violations," she adds. "Do you see anyone else in this mall snapping these things?"
  • Grabbing The Hispanic Moviegoer
    I must be ahead of the curve when it comes to mobile marketing into the movie-going segment. If there is one segment for which much of my pre-purchase process has moved to mobile, it is for movies. According to mobile social network MocoSpace, the Hispanic mobile segment is also scouting out the forward edge of mobilized movie marketing.
  • Toward Augmented Experiences
    "Borders is selling the fixtures," a friend alerted me this morning. He knows I have been coveting the black reading chairs and was hoping to nab one in the end-of-business clearance. In northern Delaware, where two large Borders stores survived the multiple closings in the last year, this dual-barreled shutdown hits us bibliophiles hard. For non-drinking, non-clubbing bookaholics like me and my wife, hanging out at Borders was a regular ritual.
  • Push, But Don't Be Push-y
    My daughter was on to the universal SMS cancellation code long before the MMA and carriers made it standard. My attempts at verbally short-messaging what I took to be helpful and necessary parental tips (under 140 characters, I am sure) were canceled regularly pretty much from the time she was three. At some point in the early teen years it was so hard to get a response from her that it felt as if the Dad App had been wiped from her home screen altogether. I know how you app makers feel when users get frustrated with your push messaging.
  • Stop Watching The Damn Phone!: Etiquette In The Age Of Ubiquitous TV
    "Wait a minute, what are you watching on that thing?" my wife asks as I pop in the iPhone headphones and appear to be leaning back -- while she watches an on-demand episode of "Dr. Who" on the big screen in our living room. Actually, I don't even know if I have been busted or not. What's the new etiquette in a world of ubiquitous and multiple screens in every room? Now that the smartphone and tablet have added to the pile of available displays, if my wife is watching one thing on the family TV, is it rude or …
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