Archive for July, 2011
Free games are now generating the majority of the revenue amongst the top 100 grossing games in the App Store. A free game gets more downloads, and if it’s engaging, and has the right mechanics, it should compel you to pay for features inside of the game.
Only a sliver of gamers — 0.5% to 6% of users says Flurry — actually spend money in a free game. But those that do spend big supporting the developer and keeping the app free for everyone else.
Some more fun phone facts from the folks at Pew: 83 percent of American adults own a cellphone, 35 percent have a smartphone, and 87 percent smartphone owners use their handset to browse the internet and read email, apparently having decided that the things are good for more than just making phone calls and keeping papers from blowing away. Also of interest is the fact that 28 percent of the 2,277 people surveyed actually use their small screen devices as their primary method for accessing the internet. It’s worth noting that it’s not a huge sample size we’re working with here, so maybe hold off on declaring the PC dead — still, it may be a sign of lots of squinting to come.
Pew: Smartphone owners increasingly ignoring other devices to get online originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 12 Jul 2011 03:17:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Last Friday our own Alexia Tsotsis broke the news that digital loyalty card startup Punchd was being acquired by Google. The company is still very young but it’s a move that makes sense — Punchd’s service, which lets customers accrue digital versions of those buy-10-get-1-free cards, could tie in well with Google’s payment products, like Google Wallet. Punchd responded to the article by tweeting that it had not been acquired.
Now, three days later, they’re officially announcing that the six-person startup has indeed been acquired by Google and will be working from the search giant’s Mountain View headquarters going forward.
The cause of the discrepancy: Punchd cofounder Reed Morse says that at the time of our post, the deal had not yet gone through, and that now it has. Okay.
Anyway. Morse did share some other interesting tidbits, including the fact that the Punchd team isn’t simply being absorbed by Google to work on other projects — it’s going to continue working on Punchd full time, and that the service isn’t going anywhere.
He also shared an interesting piece of Punchd’s history. The service got its start last year when Morse and cofounder Grantland Chew (who has since left the company) took a class at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo that focused on Android development — a class that was made possible when Google donated two dozen G1 devices to the school. You can read an article about Punchd from the school newspaper here.
Punchd was a member of the first batch of 500Startups companies.
We know Google is investing heavily in product search, most recently adding local availability, discovery tools and more to the comparison shopping portal. Today, Google is updating its requirements for merchants in a number of countries.
In the U.S., Google is adjusting its Google Product Search Feed to help make the search portal more useful for online shoppers. For background, online retailers create a data feed for their content they would like to be indexed by Google Product search.
For example, online merchants will now be required to give availability status for all products. Google is also making a product image required for merchants, and is encouraging retailers to submit up to 10 additional images of the product for search. Retailers also now need to include information like size, category and color availability for all products in their feed. And, Google is asking retailers to provide gender and age group specifications.
The search giant says that starting on September 22, 2011, Google will be ‘taking action’ against accounts with feeds targeting the United States, France, United Kingdom, Japan, and Germany that do not comply with these requirements.
So why is Google cracking down on merchants? The company is trying to make product search better, so requiring data like images, sizing, and availability will help Product Search become more useful and powerful for consumers.
MoviePass gets kicked out of theaters before it can get a ticket originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 02 Jul 2011 11:57:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Ever felt the need to customize vehicles and search dealer inventory, right from the comfort of your smartphone? Us neither, but here’s the General with another app to whet our appetites. While certainly not the first of its kind, the GMC showroom app for iOS (coming soon to Android), allows you to specify drive-type, trim, and both exterior / interior colors. Once content with your selections, you’re shown nearby dealers carrying exact replicas of your magnificent taste. Unfortunately for us, the app makes no mention of the closest EN-V. If SUVs are you’re thing, however, have a peep at the free app at the source link below.
GMC showroom app tells you where to pick up your dream SUV, doesn’t help with down payment originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 01 Jul 2011 00:43:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Google has decided to finally go all-in with Google +, a social network that mimics many aspects of Facebook.
Vic Gundotra, the man in charge of the project, calls it a bet the company product, and warns that if Google whiffs on social again and again, it will be drowned by Facebook.
Facebook is becoming its own private internet within the internet that Google can’t crack. Without that information it becomes a less valuable property.
To show how important Facebook has become, comScore sent us this data showing time spent inside Facebook for U.S. users versus Google.
Granted, it’s not a perfect comparison since Google sends people away from its core product, while Facebook wants to trap them inside. But it shows how big a time suck Facebook is, and how much it can pick up on users that Google just can’t get.
Dr. Augustine Fou is Digital Consigliere to marketing executives, advising them on digital strategy and Unified Marketing(tm). Dr Fou has over 17 years of in-the-trenches, hands-on experience, which enables him to provide objective, in-depth assessments of their current marketing programs and recommendations for improving business impact and ROI using digital insights.
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