The downfall of Microsoft’s Kin smartphones is a fairly well-known story at this point, and something that Microsoft would no doubt prefer to forget, but details have a tendency to keep trickling out. The latest comes courtesy of Wired’s Gadget Lab, which has obtained some previously unseen internal testing videos that paint a bleak picture of the problems Microsoft was facing. While the devices in question are pre-production models, they’re said to be “changed very little from the shipping product” and, as you can see in the videos, they didn’t exactly make a good impression on the product testers. Words like “lag” and “frustrating” are the common theme, with one tester adding: “I can imagine my daughter would give this back very quickly.” Of course, these are just a small sample of what were undoubtedly many testing sessions, but the complaints are remarkably similar to those we’d see when the phones were ultimately released. You can find one video after the break and the rest at the link below.
Internal Microsoft Kin testing videos offer a new look at what went wrong originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 19 Nov 2012 17:03:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Within just six quick minutes—about as much time as it took for ecstatic Democrats to confirm on Twitter, jump up and down a little, pick up their phones, and pick a filter, the rate of photos uploaded to Instagram more than double to 2.1 the normal rate. If you’re a user of the app—and you probably are!—you no doubt got sepia peeks into a lot of living rooms and apartments around the country. The CNN close-up shot was a particular favorite. [Instagram]
The company’s crowing this morning focused on total iPad opening weekend sales of three million; that’s iPad mini and fourth-generation iPads combined.
And, for all we know, still-available iPad 2 sales as well. It’s a healthy number, no doubt, and one that would be the envy of Amazon and Google and Microsoft no matter what the breakdown. Still, the fact that Apple’s chosen not to be more granular—and that it didn’t sell out of what was widely believed to be a supply-constrained product—might give some pause. From the press release:
Apple® today announced it has sold three million iPads in just three days since the launch of its new iPad® mini and fourth generation iPad-double the previous first weekend milestone of 1.5 million Wi-Fi only models sold for the third generation iPad in March.
Apple sold three million total retina iPads its opening weekend in March, but was available in only 12 countries. The iPad mini and iPad 4 were available in 34 countries at launch (and are two products, not one), so it’s not exactly an apples to apples comparison.
Again, three million tablets in three days is a lot of tablets, no question about that. But there’s enough spin here to a top up for days, which makes you wonder if the iPad mini didn’t live up to someone’s—or everyone’s—expectations. [Apple]
Update: Apple has confirmed with AllThingsD that the three million number includes only the current-generation iPad and iPad mini.
It’s been quite a while since a personal media player finagled its way onto the site, and while eMatic’s new eSport Clip is probably a marginal-at-best media player and digital camera, it’s worth noting that it’s also just 22 bucks.
For reference, it will cost you $40 just to get the extended warranty on the display-less iPod Shuffle, which doesn’t come with a camera. And while the image quality on the eSport Clip is probably even more abysmal than the iPad 2′s camera, and you’ll be no doubt squinting at its tiny 1.8-inch display, you’ve probably already forgotten that it’s just $22, available excusively from Walmart. [eMatic]
Tumblr has been in the news a lot recently because of their huge user numbers (there’s also been some question of whether or not they are a “bot fest” – but I’ll leave that for others to analyze.) Back in 2009, I compared Tumblr to Posterous – but since that time Tumblr has just pulled away. So much so that Posterous seems to have seen the writing on the wall and is now pivoting in a new direction. But I thought it would be good to take a look at how Tumblr fairs against the larger, more established blogging networks – namely WordPress.com and Blogger.com (now part of Google).
In terms of unique visitors, there isn’t any comparison – WordPress continues to dominate. Blogger has seen attrition in their numbers and has now fallen to third place (maybe the recent move to integrate Blogger into Google+ will help here).
In terms of visits, while Tumblr passed Blogger more than a year ago, it has now moved into a tie with WordPress.
But while Tumblr has many fewer unique visitors, those visitors are viewing a lot of pages. In fact, Tumblr is now completely dominating WordPress and Blogger in this area.
And in terms of attention, Tumblr is once again dominant.
I think the reason for the higher level of engagement on Tumblr (as measured in Page Views and Attention) probably comes down to a couple of key properties of Tumblr:
1. Tumblr functions more like a social network – thus people that use Tumblr tend to also subscribe/follow other Tumblrs – creating a strong network effect.
2. Cross-blog tagging – this brings a bit of Twitter to the blog network – allowing people to easily aggregate content, by tag, across blogs. This also, no doubt, aids in content discovery.
3. Tumblr reduces barriers to publishing content – unlike a traditional blog, where people feel the need to provide richer content, Tumblr tends to encourage simple posts.
What do you think? Are you using Tumblr now in place of other blogging networks? How do you decide which one to use, and for what purpose?
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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