Originally posted on October 22, 2010 @ 1:22 pm
Taking a cue from the YouTube team, the boys and girls at Google recently updated their mobile Gmail web app in order to make it behave more like a native iPhone app.
Go toÂ gmail.com from your iPhone and youâ€™ll notice two improvements weâ€™ve rolled out over the past few weeks. First, scrolling is snappier: the speed of scrolling reflects the speed of your swipe gesture. This is helpful for long conversations where a few quick flicks will get you to the information you need much faster than before. Second, the toolbars stay on screen while youâ€™re scrolling rather than moving down into viewÂ after each scroll. Being able to access your toolbars from any point on the page should make it easier to triage your email and move around the app. (Official Google Mobile Blog)
While the web app is much better than its predecessor, it still has all of the short comings of an iPhone web app, chief of those being the inability to upload content (like images) into a message, something our Android brethren can do via Chrome.
Despite the fact that Apple already provides users with a default mail app, truth be told it’s rather clunky andÂ inefficientÂ (especially when it comes to “starring” emails via IMAP).
Hopefully Google is seriously considering creating an official native Gmail app as that would allow users to check their messages while on the go, regardless of how strong their carrier’s signal is.
Originally posted on October 28, 2010 @ 1:52 pm
With the Blackberry Torch behind them and the Playbook tablet ahead of them, RIM’s attempts at thwarting Apple’s rise looked pathetic at best (especially when one considers the size of their app store).
However, RIM might be able to slow the bleeding by including one of their greatest assets within the Blackberry OS.
With the BBM Social Platform, developers will be able to tap into their social interactions in BBM to enable real-time, peer-to-peer interactions across their applications. Specifically, developers can leverage the BBM platform to access BBM contacts, user profiles, and groups to build more engaging applications. Furthermore, the BBM APIs will also enable developers to support embedded chats, content sharing, and real-time data sharing between two users of an application. (Blackberry Developers Blog)
Although this is more of a “me too” feature (as it looks very similar to Apple’s Game Center), it should convince a few Blackberry fans to avoid jumping ship upon the iPhone or (worse) an Android device.
Despite the potential of BBM, RIM needs to do a better job of attracting more developers on their platform, and (more importantly) a higher quality of apps available across various Blackberry devices.
Originally posted on September 29, 2010 @ 5:09 pm
After launching Google Buzz to the masses within Gmail, the search engine giant has faced harsh criticism from users (at least within the US) over various privacy issues with the service.
Now the company is apparently setting aside millions of dollars in order to help pacify the legal complaints against the company.
A class action Settlement has been reached with Google Inc. (“Google”) that resolves litigation about privacy concerns arising out of Googleâ€™s social networking program, Google Buzz. The Plaintiffs allege that Google automatically enrolled Gmail users in Buzz, and that Buzz publicly exposed data, including usersâ€™ most frequent Gmail contacts, without enough user consent. Google denies the accuracy of Plaintiffsâ€™ allegations and denies that it violated any law or caused any harm by the launch of Google Buzz.
Although Google is still maintaining its innocence regarding the matter, the settlement is a way for the company to pacify their vocal critics in order to move beyond the uproar Google Buzz created.
For those willing to litigate, Google is offering Americans the option to exclude themselves from the settlement (if they desire to sue Google with their own attorney) or forfeit their legal complaints by doing nothing.
Lawsuits and settlements aside, Google is still struggling to make Google Buzz relevant with the masses, and it will be interesting to see whether or not Google shuts down Buzz in the future (like they did with Google Wave) and focus on other projects instead.
Originally posted on November 3, 2010 @ 2:04 pm
Android fans outside of Verizon’s network no longer have to envy their iPhone and Nokia buddies as Skype is officially available for those who embrace the green robot.
Youâ€™ve been asking us for it â€“ and now itâ€™s here. Skype is now available on a wide range of Android phones, so you can save money and stay in touch when youâ€™re out and about. VisitÂ skype.com/m on your phone to download, or read on to find out whatâ€™s inside.
With the new app, you can make free Skype-to-Skype calls, and send and receive IMs for free, one-to-one or with a group. You can also call phones atÂ Skypeâ€™s great rates â€“ over WiFi or 3G. (Official Skype Blog)
Truthfully it was always puzzling as to why Skype decided to make their app exclusive to Verizon despite the fact that doing so limited their service to between 1/2 and 1/3 of US customers despite Androids global footprint.
Fortunately it seems as if Skype execs have seen the light, as Skype is available on all Android powered devices unless one lives in Japan or China.
Unfortunately if you have a Samsung Galaxy S you are more or less out of luck, but hopefully Skype will be able to rectify this soon (as users are reportedly unable to sing into their Skype accounts.).
Originally posted on October 5, 2010 @ 1:18 pm