• Apps Become Mainstream In Brand Building
    After a rocky start when costly and pointless "branded apps" seemed to be the rule in the early days of the iOS App Store, many leading brands have settled into a routine of leveraging mobile applications as a part of their overall promotional strategy. According to the latest report from app metrics company Distimo, the share of top 100 brands represented in at least one mobile app store has grown from about 50% in March 2010 to 91% in September 2011.
  • IMDb Spins Apps Off Its Central Database
    For years the Amazon-owned IMDb has been pretty much true to its own name: Internet Movie Database. The IMDb is the go-to place for recalling that movie Steve Buscemi was in, or whether Oliver Stone directed "JFK" before or after "The Doors," or who was that guy (you know that guy) who played the young Don Vito's best friend in "Godfather II"? (You know. The guy who was in the movie with the alligator and Ferris Bueller.)
  • Sony Buys Out Ericsson Phone Stake to Challenge Apple
    Chuckle if you must, but Sony's just-announced buyout of Ericsson's stake in the Sony Ericsson phone joint venture is in part an attempt by the great electronics manufacturer to take on both Apple and Samsung, according to a Reuter's report this morning. For nearly a decade the two companies shave been partnered on phones, some of which have been far ahead of the market in advancing the Sony cause of entertainment everywhere.
  • Escape Velocity: Raw Data From OMMA Mobile
    The sheer scale of mobile has always been its most impressive feature for media and marketers. The raw penetration of mobile handsets and the hockey stick growth of smartphones still occupy that first slide in so many pitch sessions. As if there is anyone left in the marketing industry who doesn't already know just how extensive mobile's reach is. Yet there still are numbers related to mobile use that still can astonish and impress even grizzled vets. At yesterday's OMMA Mobile show in San Francisco, I asked our panelists to share as much as they could about what their users …
  • Biographer Vs. The Reality Distortion Field
    With the arrival yesterday of Walter Isaacson's hotly awaited bio of the late Steve Jobs, we enter a new round of Jobs-ophilia as bloggers and reviewers cherry-pick the revealing and provocative tidbits from this large bio. Courtesy of technologies, distribution and business models Jobs championed, the pre-ordered book downloaded to my iPad nook app very early Monday morning as I was making my way to OMMA Mobile by air. I only got to read a fraction of the story so far, pretty much up to the first work, with Apple's invention. Incomplete as my impressions are, I have read enough …
  • Best Buy Opens App Discovery Center
    After selling you just the right smartphone, big box retailer Best Buy wants to help its customers find the right apps among the hundreds of thousands now in both Android and iOS markets. The newly launched Best Buy App Discovery Center is a directory of apps across both major operating systems, indexed on a more granular level than either the iOS App Store or Android Marketplace offer on their own. Best Buy is not only cataloging but curating apps, and it has also tied the new service to its local staff and markets.
  • Weather Channel Explores Third Dimension in iPad Refresh
    I knew that the struggling 3D film and TV effort had jumped the shark when I saw this week ads for "A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas" coming soon to theaters. My hope is that this film signals a deserved descent of the 3D wave into self-parody. The trailer appeared to be a self-consciously silly parade of sequences planned and optimized for their 3D effect, playing on the audience's built-in cynicism about the gimmickry being foisted on them as Hollywood's next big thing. And so when the Weather Channel released its first major revamp of the ubiquitous iPad app …
  • Amazon Stokes Kindle Fire With PBS Video
    Amazon continues to show that it is serious this time about challenging Netflix and Apple when it comes to streaming media to tablets. In the run-up to the Nov. 15 launch of Kindle Fire, the online retailer announced a deal with PBS to carry archived PBS programming in its streaming media library for Amazon Prime members.
  • 'House Beautiful' Meets Andy Warhol in Mobile-Activated Cover
    The late pop artist and professional celebrity Andy Warhol is not someone you usually associate with a women's service title like House Beautiful. But if you use the Digimarc discover smartphone app on the November cover, the magazine springs to multimedia life with a mobile video homage to the grainy handheld 8mm art films that marked Warhol's early career.
  • AT&T U-Verse Launches Interactive TV App Suite
    With nearly a third of us regularly consulting our cell phones for TV-related information during our TV viewing hours, cable and satellite providers are scrambling to catch up to consumer behavior with apps that enhance the first-screen experience without losing the customer to third-screen brands. AT&T's U-verse TV service is partnering with TV app makers to offer customers a suite of mobile services that are now labeled "U-verse Enabled" in the apple App Store.
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