Nexus 4 – The First 300 Billion Dollar Phone?

I’m an Apple Fan Boy, for decades, and an iOS developer as well.

Grenouille avec un téléphone portable

Everything at home has been designed in California and even my first PC (they didn’t call these machines PCs in these days) was an Apple II Plus.

Yes, I also develop with Java, Android and some other environments, for years, but if somebody has asked me in the past, what is the best phone (especially within in the last 2-4 years), I said, without any hesitation: ‘Of course, the iPhone!’

I was so fundamentally convinced by the superiority of the Apple products (software & hardware) that I also invested my money in Apple shares, very successfully, even when the stock price passed the 500$…and many people already commented: ‘What the hell..!’

And then the Nexus 4 appeared, quietly.

More or less with its appearance the Apple stock price started to tumble, slowly, and nobody really understood why, not in the beginning, not directly, but more and more people started to grasp, why the Apple phone magic might be over: The happy people who received the first wave of Nexus 4 phones were the first ones.

I’ve received my Nexus 4 probably a week ago. I often bought Android devices just to stay with Apple in the end. But this time it seems to be different, I’ve switched my daily phone and the platform… and I guess I will stay here at least until we will see a new iOS 7 and/or new iPhone.

apple

Why? This blog post explains it more or less very detailed or with one short statement:

It’s better in probably every area for half the price of an iPhone.

OK, but why is the Nexus 4 a 300 billion dollar phone? LG has to sell a billion phones to reach this number in terms of revenue.
No, it’s not meant in this direction.

The Nexus 4 phone could reduce the Apple’s current market capitalization by 300 billions back to 180 billions, the share price from 500 $ to something between 150 $ and 200 $.

Why? Because, if they want to compete with the market, or especially with the Nexus 4 and many coming cool and cheap Android phones Apple has to sell their iPhone(s) or coming iPhones for something in between 300$ and 400$, and this could maybe reduce their EPS from 45 to 25.

Many ‘coulds’ and ‘maybes’, I know, but the iPhone is Apple’s main revenue horse and the only Apple mainstream and mass market product today. If they loose their mass market product Apple will still be a cool company with cool products, but  for the niche again as Apple always was before the iPhone and Steve usually wanted to be.

But when and if this happens, Apple’s price tag has to be changed…maybe by 300 billions. Apple will then be the Porsche of the IT market again but with Porsche’s market cap and not with the Volkswagen market cap it has today.

And maybe everything started with the Nexus 4 – The first 300 Billion Dollar Phone…

nexus4-1

Flash for Freedom

I’m an Apple Fanboy, for many, many years now. I owned an Apple IIe in 1978 and now, 2010, several Macs and an iPhone.

And I know, when I surf a Flash web site, my Mac’s ventilator often starts to run or my Firefox browser or even Google Chrome crashes because of the heavy load nature of Flash sometimes.

But all these disadvantages are, in my eyes, less important than keeping me my freedom of choice.
And with my Macbook I have this freedom today, the same with my iMac, but with my iPhone and the iPad I’m loosing this freedom of choice.

Somebody else decides, what is good for me and what not.

And I’m happy having kept this freedom by switching from my iPhone to Android, because after some hours with Flash for Android I must admit: It works, yes it does!

It’s not perfect, it brings heavy load to the CPU, the battery and the connection, but it works. If I want to surf a Flash site, I can. I do not have to, and I guess, I will seldomly do, but I can.

Yes, I can – that’s my freedom, my Flash for freedom.

Why to buy NOW an Android Nexus One

Although there might be – meanwhile – better Android Devices than the Nexus One (e.g. the HTC Incredible or the HTC Evo) the last days have demonstrated why it might be, I believe it is an advantage to own a Nexus phone.

Only one day after the GoogleIO Nexus owners can now update their their phones to the new and really brilliant new version Froyo:

And, I believe also, this is and won’t be an exception in the future:

  • Google will be always the first, who has access to a new version and will test very soon all development stages against their own phones
  • Google doesn’t have to migrate special customizations  to new version (like e.g. HTC has to with their Sense UI) – this saves, as we have seen in the past, maybe  a lot of time, time to market

In the last weeks I thought I have to switch to a HTC Incredible, but since some days now I guess it’s better to stay with my Nexus – at the moment :-)

Open or Android is not always a guaranteed blessing

Android will succeed, no doubt.

By the end of the year 2012 it will dominate the mobile browsing and the mobile handset market – all over the world, I’m sure.

But as Android is an open operating system there’s no guarantee for success for those companies using Android, and especially no guarantee for a continuos success even if you’ve once lunched a successful Android device.

The best and first example for this new market situation is Motorola. The Android Droid was and is a huge success at Verizon. But now comes the next manufacturer with the next Android mobile to Verizon – HTC with the Droid Incredible.

This new handset might steal the Droid’s current show and might be even more successful than its predecessor.

Both handsets carry even comparable product names, so that the customers shall believe in this ‘Next Generation Android Story’.

So, as an Android manufacturer , there are (at least) five points very important:

  1. Refocus on the hardware, built cool handsets with cutting edge technology
  2. Hire the best and a lot of Android developers, who know how to customize the Android OS
  3. Built your own UI layer
  4. Be always the first with the newest Android versions, especially with updates for already sold devices
  5. Carry a very good relationship to the carriers

This way is different to the Apple, Nokia and Palm way, but if you focus on these points, you can be as successful, probably even more successful, than others, as the Palm history has taught us…

Google – An Algorithm but not a Business Company

If you read this rather old blog entry you will soon understand why Google is what Google is today.

This post demonstrates Google totally or at least mainly focuses on technical skills, when they recruit new staff.

Maybe that’s also the reason why Google performs very well concerning their search engine, search algorithms and in finding new technical solutions, but fails in bringing their technical and often brilliant ideas to the people and to the mass market.

Just reflect their latest innovations like Buzz or Wave and you’ll soon understand what I mean.

Or think about Android. A – technically seen – brilliant mobile OS, but Google has forgotten to think beyond this new technology – no Android mobile eco system like Apple has brought to the customer more than one year before Android was launched.
They only had to copy Apple’s successful business model, but they didn’t.

Why? The People at Google have never be trained for these tasks…and to copy :-) .

Do you want your own Android Market?

Then here I have probably something for you:

And comparable to the huge numbers of specialized web communities I believe it also make sense to deploy more and topic driven markets. On the one hand side the standard markets like the Android market will become more and more overcrowded and on the other side people get used to the market eco system and will accept and can handle additional markets on their phones.

And if you’ve followed the last Android news: The US Military is just starting developing its own market infrastructure (via DARPA).

How to programmatically access the Android Market

Many people tried in the past to access the Android Market from own web or native clients in order to mash up market information with own content.

This hasn’t been an easy task since now thus there’s no official API for that. Nevertheless some did it either by decompiling the market app, understood and reproduced the market API.

But now there ‘somehow’ an open and standard API lib for doing the same.

It’s very easy to use, just try it:

MarketSession session = new MarketSession();
session.login(“”);
AppsRequest appsRequest = AppsRequest.newBuilder()

.setQuery("A")
.setStartIndex(2).setEntriesCount(10)
.setWithExtendedInfo(true)
.build();
MarketSession.Callback callback = new MarketSession.Callback() {
@Override

public void onResult(ResponseContext context, Object response) {
System.out.println(response);
}
};
session.append(appsRequest, callback);
session.flush();

Why I fell in Love with Android

Many people ask me, why I prefer Android over the iPhone although I own, with the iPhone 3GS, one of the best, many people would say The best, smartphones ever.

And to answer this difficult question I’ve to go back a while:

In the last seven years I owned many mobiles – really many. Being responsible for mobile software development I had to test our applications against many platforms. So it happened that I changed my personal phone every two weeks, because we always had the latest and the best ones.

And the most annoying thing switching the phone was to bring the new phone to the status of the old one – meanwhile you can compare the initialization of a smartphone with the installation of a desktop PC.

And then came Android. Before Android I haven’t been a Google mail or calendar user, but with Android I learnt, that I just have to put my new SIM card into the new Android mobile and everything is as it was before: Emails, calendar, contacts etc.

A huge step forward for somebody, who changes his mobiles as often as I do. I know it’s a very special usecase, but one very typical for me.

Meanwhile I can switch from one Android phone to the other in seconds, and I did it already many times: From G1 to the Magic to the Hero to the Tattoo to the Droid and now to the Nexus. And the latest and next Android smartphones are already waiting for me…

So far so good. Concerning applications there’s still space to improve the Android platform. I still have to re-install my applications on every handset again. But one great thing to say: Paid applications don’t need to be bought again. The Android market knows already about your shopped applications and let you install them for free again.

And there’s also an app in the market, that will help you to reconstruct you app system on a new device. It’s called ‘App Referrer‘. This apps scans your current app installation basis and then sends you an email with all market links. Save this email and open this one on your new device. Just click the given links and you can re-install within one easy email.

Just try it. This app is great and it bypasses the weaknesses of the current Android market until they will offer something comparable. Something like an app cloud with your installed apps, that can be re-installed on every new device with one click…

Why Android will win (the consumer) despite fragmentation

Despite all the entitled discussions around fragmentation the Android platform will, in the end, win (the mass consumer).

And with the mass consumer comes the money, especially when you drive your business like Google does.

Android will attract the mass consumer, because with the Android OS many newcomers and companies in emerging markets have now the chance to produce low end and cheap devices, that are, in most areas, compatible with the high end Android devices.

It’s just the Wintel way of wining the mass market, here you will find the same fragmentation issues today.

The mainstream apps run on every Wintel device, but there are many special apps, that run only on a specific Wintel device (think of games and graphic adapters). But the user doesn’t care, as long as he has his most importants apps and knows, how to run the more sophisticated ones (if he sometimes needs to).

Wintel is cheap, cheaper than anything else (today), as Android will be in the future.

The Apple iPhone is and will probably stay a great phone, but it will never, because of its price structure, extend its market share to the middle and low end of the mass market.

But in the long run Google needs the mass market, as many others do, too, despite Apple :-) .

Why Twitter doesn’t work for the Business

From time to time I try to influence some decision makers in banks to start with Social Media and to use Twitter. It has been a hard job in the past so far.

But since yesterday it even will be become much harder.

The problem of Social Media and Twitter in special: They are, technically seen, build for the end user and are heavily open either (what I like as private person).

These services don’t provide security mechanism old and traditional business units require, before they will rely on something like Twitter.

For Twitter this could mean (for example):

  • Special business accounts, where OAuth, the Twitter API and the public access is deactivated
  • Business accounts with a special business API, where only a dedicated client (client certificates) is allowed to connect
  • Something like a Twitter workflow, where two or more users in an organization work on the same tweet
  • Something like a twitter transaction number, where a tweet will only be posted, if you input the correct number
  • And some more…

And even if you build some of these requirements into your own Twitter or Social Media client, these services still remain open and insecure, because the general access stays unchanged.

Yes, I know, all these requirements usually don’t fit to the general idea of Social Media or Web 2.0, but, if we want huge and traditional companies to join the ‘Social Media Club’,  then these services have to adapt conventional security and business pattern.

World Premiere of a Mobile Application / service made in Berlin

With just one week to go until MoMo Berlin on March 8th, we’re proud to announce the world premiere of a mobile application/ service made in Berlin on that date: “Friendticker”. Friendticker CEO Florian says that their aim is to give foursquare et al. a run for their money by adding real-life value to a customer’s mobile actions, going way beyond the playful aspects of first generation virtual
check-in apps. So will friendticker be able to start a worldwide stir in the mobile marketplace like foursquare did?

Find out this and more at our next event and register NOW, if you haven’t already done so. Looking forward to seeing you there!

Visit MobileMonday Germany at: http://www.mobile-monday.de

Android eats its Children

In my eyes problems of the worldwide hype of the open and modern mobile operating system Android are, besides the missing native Android desktop client, the following:

  • The agility, the openness and the dynamic of Android produces very fast and often new versions with new and cool functionality. This leads to the fact that just released and basically cool handsets are outdated before they reach the market. Thus manufacturers of these mobiles have difficulties in selling their new products. At the moment everybody wants the Nexus (with 2.1) or at least the Droid (with 2.0.1). The really cool people don’t want to buy an Android  mobile with version 1.5 or 1.6. In countries like Germany (where we don’t have the Nexus yet) this can – maybe – result in a (never ending) wait-and-see attitude of the customer.
  • This same agility enforces the handset manufacturers to hire more and more Android specialists to adapt the newest Android versions, especially when they have to migrate proprietary Android extension (e.g. own home screens). This makes Android, although free of charge, maybe more expensive than other operating systems. And the manufacturers can’t use their Android stuff to develop important apps or other services to attract new customers.

The very successful iPhone OS doesn’t have these problems…

The Social Mobile App Radar and why Android knows it

Yesterday I’ve used AppAware for the first time, and I was really impressed.
Impressed about the idea behind this service and impressed about the Android technology used for this app.

AppAware, once installed on your Android device, informs your followers (including Twitter if you like to) about your app usage (“what do I install and deinstall?”).
But AppAware also informs me, and even localized, what other users are doing with their apps on their Android mobile.

For this purpose Android provides an API (via the BroadcastReceiver class) to let any application know whats going up on the user’s handset. With this API your/any app can listen to system intents (a kind of messaging on the Android platform) and react.

Something, I guess ,AppAware has used for it’s new and brilliant service.

And think about what else might be possible, when millions of handsets are collecting data about and broadcasting their behaviour to the cloud…

AppAware can be found and downloaded in the Android Market.

If Apple had built Buzz

… I guess we would have seen brilliant working, stable, fully integrated and tested clients in every Apple layer.

Google has surprised us with a brilliant idea, but with a bit confusing, instable and heterogeneous clients (especially for the mobile), but Buzz is free for all and available for almost every operation system and mobile.

Google created Android, but in many cases I have the impression Google is still missing the feeling for the mobile business, many things they do in this space (App Store, Nexus, Wave and now Buzz) is, in the beginning, a kind of immature and sluggish business and  technology.

That’s the difference between Apple and Google, I love both companies, and it’s good to see both alive and kicking here on earth. They are so different, but both very successful in how they do things and thus important for our further development.

Win Your Nexus with MobileMonday

With the first m2d2 MobileMonday Germany has ventured into a new event-format.

As globally renowned thought-leaders of the Mobile Internet development we know this to be the time to address You, the Mobile developer community, with our brand new format, which is aimed to go well beyond our regular meetings.

Celebrating this birthday we are delighted to announce that we will be raffling off 3 brand new Nexus One handsets at the first m2d2. The Nexus One showcases the latest innovations of the Android platform, our m2d2 topic!

The Google Nexus is sold online by Google at www.google.com/phone.

Is that the Google App Store we’ve waited for so long?

Mashable today reports about a coming Google App Store. Is that the app store, we have waited for so long? The post relates to Google Apps and says nothing about Android or the technology which will be used for deployment and development.

Google needs an app store on the client. Not only because Apple has one like iTunes or because it’s sexy today to have one.

Google needs its app store on the client to round up the Android eco system:
The user needs an adequate opportunity to manage its Android handset on his preferred client – to download (buy) apps, music, videos and to synchronize those artefacts whenever he wants to.

Google needs the app store the establish their e-commerce platform on the user’s client machine.

From my point of view neither Google’s mobile e-commerce nor Android will and can survive without something comparable to iTunes.

Why are they waiting?

The Dictator App Store versus the Federated App Store

A lot of people are criticizing the app store model as a model which reduces the freedom of app development and thus the development and the creativity of the internet and the computer industry in general.

But, although and technical seen, nearly every app store model is the same, they aren’t at all, if we refer to the debate above.

There are two – totally different – approaches to use the/an app store model.

The first one is the ‘Wallet Garden’ – we know this term from the early mobile internet days. The only way of an app to find its way to the client is through the one and only app store on this device.
This is the Dictator App Store, not only the app store is controlled, the complete device is controlled by one party.

The other app store model is the Federated App Store Model. Individually considered this app store is comparable to the Dictator Model, but it differs in the way, that this model allows the co-existence of several app stores on one device from different independent parties and an app to find the way to its client by-passing the app store.

Now it’s up to you, which platform supports which model!

When the Apple iPad will fail

I own two MacBooks and an iMac7. I’m buying Apple since 1978, so I’m indeed no one trying to bash Apple.

But besides the fact that the tablet architecture in general isn’t a suitable model for me and my use cases, because if I have the space for a tablet, I prefer my MacBook Air, the iPad seems to be, at this stage, too close for me.

It adapts the closed iPhone app store business model, which is acceptable for me on a smartphone, but if I have something in size like the iPad, I want the freedom of a laptop – I’m used to since years.

If I can only run and install apps, that will come thru the app store powered by only one carrier then I definetly prefer my laptop, where I can choose how to power and how to install apps.

It’s that easy…

Mobile App is King, the Mobile Developer even more – take care of him!

What we’ve seen in 2009 was the year of the Mobile App and the Mobile App Market (although everybody has claimed this year as the year of the Mobile Internet).

We’ve learned the Mobile App can make money and can solve some today’s publisher’s issues either.

And the forecast for 2010 and the following years is even brighter.

But nothing counts, if you do not have a suitable developer eco-system and a vital developer community.

For this reason the worldwide MobileMonday mobile community has started a new event series called m2d2 (= mobilemonday developer day).

This event series will start on the 23rd of February in Dusseldorf Germany, but will be extended all over the world (next m2d2 will take place in Munich in May).

Everything will be free (as usual for the MobileMonday community), so stay tuned for updates as a developer, and if you are somebody, who takes care about developers, come and visit your community here at the m2d2.