April 2010
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Day April 14, 2010

Smartphones taking over in mobile gaming

Smartphones are upturning the mobile gaming market, comScore found in a study today. The number of players on iPhones and other smartphones has jumped 60 percent in the past year to almost 21.4 million and has cut deeply into the portion of those using regular cellphones. Their numbers dropped a sharp 35 percent over the same period to just 29.5 million.

via Smartphones taking over in mobile gaming | Electronista.

More data from Flurry analytics here.

Other game platforms vs. iPhone catalogs here.

Speaking of selling out…

Demand for Apple’s newly upgraded line of MacBook Pro notebooks was strong on the first day, with scattered reports of the low-end 13-inch model selling out in some retail locations

via AppleInsider | New MacBook Pros off to strong start, 13-inch model selling out.

Apple Media Advisory – iPad rationing to continue

Although we have delivered more than 500,000 iPads during its first week, demand is far higher than we predicted and will likely continue to exceed our supply over the next several weeks as more people see and touch an iPad™. We have also taken a large number of pre-orders for iPad 3G models for delivery by the end of April.

Faced with this surprisingly strong US demand, we have made the difficult decision to postpone the international launch of iPad by one month, until the end of May.

via Apple Media Advisory – Yahoo! Finance.

How about that.

iPad sold out in Boston [Updated]

There are no iPads in any of the four Apple stores I called in the Boston area for three days now.  If any units arrive they sell out in minutes.  This is still with a limit of 2 per person and no 3G units available.  Also, bulk purchases by education are being delayed.

Now I have no data for the rest of the country, but there have been notes from analysts saying that stock-outs are occurring sporadically.  My experience tells me that it’s a pretty serious retail shortage.  On the other hand, the on-line store is still delivering with one week shipment times.

It could be that the international trade or “mules” are taking large shipments overseas.  To discourage this, perhaps Apple is giving preference to mail order over in-store purchase.  The phenomenon is similar to what was observed with the first version of iPhone. Apple was limiting sales to 5 per person and eventually banned cash purchases.

[UPDATE] Still sold out 6 days later.

On a mobile device Search hasn't happened

This is one of the most thought provoking things I’ve ever heard.  Some of the implications are unfathomable.  Before we dive into the implications of iAd, here is the exact quote from the Apple Special Event, April 2010 (iPhone 4.0 launch) around 45 minutes in.

When you look at a mobile phone, it’s not like the desktop.
On the desktop, Search is where it’s at.  That’s where the money is.
But on a mobile device Search hasn’t happened. Search is not where it’s at. People aren’t searching on a mobile device like they are on a desktop.
What’s happening is that they’re spending all their time in apps.
When people are looking for a place they want to go out to dinner they’re not searching. They’re going into Yelp. They’re using apps to get the data on the internet rather than a generalized search.
And this is where the opportunity to deliver advertising is.
Not as part of search but as part of apps.

Jobs is making a set of huge claims:

  1. There is no search on devices.
  2. There is no money in search on devices.
  3. Apps create an inventory of billions of ad impressions every day
  4. Apps are better at delivering the data from the internet than a browser
  5. Apps are therefore the new browsers and eyeball aggregators

This is heavy stuff.  I believe what gives Apple the confidence to make these claims is the vast amount of data on user behavior that the app store collects. It’s possible they’re wrong, but it’s more likely they’re right.

If they’re right, what are the implications?  First, obviously, iAd adds up to a lot of cash « Asymco.  Second, this has dire consequences for Google.  Jobs could not be more blunt: search is not where the money is at.

I can chip in some personal experiences that confirm this preference for apps over browser interfaces, but I leave it as an exercise to the reader.