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Day May 14, 2010

Mobile data use overtakes voice in US

Data use overtook voice on cellphones for the first time, according to CTIA data. Internet access and text messaging occupied more data on US carriers’ networks than did the equivalent in calls. The reversal came both through a 50 percent jump in text messaging but also the rise of data-first smartphones like the Droid and iPhone.

via Data use overtakes voice on cellphones | Electronista.

This is a fundamental shift.  Data use is disruptive to an industry built on voice.  With data come new business models, new value chains and new core values and processes and user interfaces.

The shift to mobile broadband will be more significant than the shift from fixed to mobile voice.

Google gives up on Nexus One online store

Google gives up on Nexus One online store, moves to retail | Electronista.

So much for Google the Shopkeeper.

UPDATE:  This also puts the idea of Android generating any revenue for Google at a logical dead end.  As it stands tactically and strategically, Android is a financial black hole in perpetuity.

Android remains, in my opinion, Google’s biggest failure.

Sony would say No to Walkman today

Sony is “not convinced there is a large enough market to justify bringing out a tablet,”

via Sony Considering Developing Tablet Computer to Compete With Apple’s IPad – Bloomberg.

I wonder what current Sony management would have said when the Walkman would have been presented to them in 1978 by audio-division engineer Nobutoshi Kihara.

The Walkman TPS-L2 from 1979:

The original Sony Walkman

The Walkman introduced a change in music listening habits by allowing people to carry music with them.

There was a tiny market for such implements in 1978, promoted to professional journalists.  Sony even had a product called the Pressman and marketed it exclusively to reporters. These recorders lacked stereo sound and were very expensive. They also used (typically) microcassettes, which had no support from record companies.

With the limited choices presented to consumers, the most popular cassette tape players were either home stereos or car players.

I’m sure Sony’s current management  would also have been unconvinced that there was a large enough market to justify bringing out a consumer-grade portable cassette player.

Apple's product trajectories

In a well written and reasoned essay, John Gruber observes how Apple evolves their products after starting with a perfectly narrow new product definition.

Toward the end he brings us to the iPad saying:

That brings us to the iPad. Initial reaction to it has been polarized, as is so often the case with Apple products. Some say it’s a big iPod touch. Others say it’s the beginning of a revolution in personal computing. As a pundit, I’m supposed to explain how the truth lies somewhere between these two extremes. But I can’t. The iPad really is The Big One: Apple’s reconception of personal computing.

Absolutely right.  The iPad is as big as it gets.

But in my way of thinking, the iPad itself is but a “rolling” of the original iPhone which itself was a “rolling” of the gesture-based UI that they gestated in Apple’s labs for more than five years.  That UI itself was made possible by the modular nature of OS X and the frameworks on top that have their roots in Next Step. Next Step itself owes a lot to Unix which was born in 1968.

via This is how Apple rolls | Tablets | Macworld.