Amazon Is Undermining the E-Reader Market

Amazon Is Undermining the E-Reader Market It Created | MIT Technology Review: "Last year it seemed that the market might be big enough for both dedicated e-readers and tablets, which cost more but offer e-books, among many other features. E-reader sales rose in 2011 even as tablet sales jumped sevenfold. But now it appears the versatility of tablets is winning out. “People want to do other things on their devices besides read books,” says Selburn. The popularity of tablets forced Amazon, by far the dominant seller of dedicated e-book readers, to cut into Kindle reader sales by offering its own tablet, the Kindle Fire. “If Amazon doesn’t sell tablets and cannibalize Kindle readers, someone else will,” Selburn says. . . ."

Editorial: Does Windows Phone even have a chance without Google?: "There's a reason Microsoft is fighting tooth and nail to get Office onto iOS with an agreeable revenue split. There's also a reason that Apple couldn't care less if Pages and Keynote ever end up on Windows Phone, while Google has no interest in offering a legitimate Docs experience there. It's simply becoming impossible to believe that any mobile operating system in the modern era can thrive without a meaningful push from Google. If I'm being honest, I worry that this precise scenario will make or break BlackBerry 10, but at least RIM has a (shrinking, admittedly) enterprise market to fall back on. Microsoft is gunning for the exact same customer that Apple and Google presently hold captive. And the way I see it, it's going to need a heck of a lot of luck to win that customer over using Hotmail and Skype."

Tablet owners weigh in with their biggest beefs | Mobile - CNET News: "Apple's iPad Mini - New to the 7-inch tablet arena, the iPad Mini didn't trigger much in the way of specific problems reported by its users. Rather, people were more unhappy about what the device doesn't offer. The Mini's 4:3 aspect ratio was cited by users as less than ideal for watching movies, which are typically better served by a screen with a 16:9 ratio. The small tablet also lacks the Retina Display used in the larger iPad, another complaint among its owners. And some cited the lack of storage space, though the Mini offers the same storage options as its bigger brother. . . ."

My Dumb Phone Experiment: Week One | MIT Technology Review: "That’s not to say that I haven’t enjoyed some benefits from being iPhone-less. It’s true that “spare change” time–the time waiting in line to order, or waiting for the subway to come–now gets funneled into thinking about projects I’d rather be thinking about than yet another compulsive check of my inbox. There’s undoubtedly something to be said for that. But so far, the brief bliss of moments like these is mostly overshadowed by the dozen other ways I’ve inconvenienced myself. I’m obviously and unequivocally at a net loss."

A Killer App for smartphones: make them emulate dumbphones | MIT Technology Review: "Maybe the rumored “iPhone mini” will help users find a more comfortable middle ground between “always on” and “off the grid,” but I doubt it; like the iPad mini, it’ll probably do everything its big brother can in a smaller package. But that’s okay, because “less power” or “less features” isn’t the solution anyway. Any smartphone is a ridiculously sophisticated device–and it’s more than a bit silly to force ourselves to use it like a light switch: all on, or all off. Like any computer, it can emulate lesser devices with ease and on demand. You wouldn’t throw your own iPhone away simply because your five-year-old child would be better served with a flip phone. Well, sometimes the five-year-old is you–is it too much to ask that our devices be smart enough to help us parent that inner child? . . ."

Google's Coolest Project? Broadband - "According to Eric Schmidt, Google‘s executive chairman, the most interesting project going on at the search giant is its high-speed broadband trials in Kansas City. (Missouri and Kansas versions) The business, called Google Fiber, promises speeds 100 times faster than conventional high-speed Internet services. Mr. Schmidt, who was speaking at a New York Times Dealbook conference in New York, said Google was delivering 760 megabits per second to the customer, and taking 720 megabits a second from customers. “All of the distinctions, like HD, DVD, that we grew up with, go away,” he said. “You really imagine that your computer is really in a data center.” Google is considering introducing  the service to other select cities, Mr. Schmidt said, but would not specify which towns would get the fiber."

Netflix ranks fastest Internet providers. Google is No. 1 - Dec. 11, 2012: "In the first of a new series of monthly rankings, Netflix (NFLX) said Google (GOOG, Fortune 500) Fiber -- which currently only exists in Kansas City, Kan. -- averaged download speeds of 2.55 Megabits per second while customers watched streaming Netflix video last month. That was far and away the fastest speed Netflix recorded -- 16% faster than Verizon (VZ, Fortune 500) FiOS' 2.19 Mbps speeds and 18% faster than Comcast's (CMCSA) 2.17 Mbps average. Charter (CHTR, Fortune 500) and Cablevision (CVC, Fortune 500) rounded out the top five, with speeds of 2.17 Mbps and 2.15 Mbps respectively.Keep in mind, these speeds are only relevant to Netflix's streams, which top out at 4 Mbps. Google's fiber service advertises a maximum download speed of 1,000 Mbps, and Verizon FiOS has top speeds of 300 Mbps."

Sprint Newsroom | Sprint to Acquire 100 Percent Ownership of Clearwire for $2.97 per Share: "Clearwire’s spectrum, when combined with Sprint’s, will provide Sprint with an enhanced spectrum portfolio that will strengthen its position and increase competitiveness in the U.S. wireless industry. Sprint’s Network Vision architecture should allow for better strategic alignment and the full utilization and integration of Clearwire’s complementary 2.5 GHz spectrum assets, while achieving operational efficiencies and improved service for customers as the spectrum and network is migrated to LTE standards. Sprint CEO Dan Hesse said, “Today’s transaction marks yet another significant step in Sprint’s improved competitive position and ability to offer customers better products, more choices and better services. "

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