make it stop
Posted by Abe Sauer on March 15, 2010 06:37 PM
Last October, we reported on a brewing Apple trademark battle in Australia. Apple was suing Woolworth, an Australian supermarket, over its use of an apple for its brand logo. Apple claimed the logo would compete for market share and create confusion in the minds of consumers.
Well, it seems Apple's trademark adventures Down Under continue. In a new ruling, the tech giant has been told that it has no exclusive use of its vaunted "i" prefix. More than just another trademark lawsuit loss, reports of questionable legal action on Apple's part is beginning to pile up and the brand that "thinks different" is beginning to look a lot like...*gasp*... 1990s Microsoft. Continue reading...
Posted by Tim Fielding on March 15, 2010 03:55 PM
Competition is heating up between smartphone applications and mobile browsers, prompting brands to rethink the future of portable devices and software platforms. Some techies say that applications popular with the youth market will displace search engines. Others claim the future belongs to APIs that allow browsers to adopt the best features of applications.
“For smartphone users, mobile web is the killer app,” says Nielsen’s David Gill at the South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive conference in Austin, TX. Given the popularity of the smartphone, mobile web – formerly known as WAP – is back in a big way.
Smartphone applications have been the darlings of digital media the past year. Apple has transformed the mobile user experience with its highly successful iPhone App Store, opening the way for advertisers and publishers to engage consumers in a meaningful way that WAP sites had failed to do.Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on March 15, 2010 01:12 PM
Imagine marketing a brand and knowing in real-time when a prospective buyer searches for your product category or a competitor's brand on the Web – and then being able to instantly place an ad for your brand.
It may sound far-fetched, but it's fast becoming a reality with advances in online advertising. Now that Google, Microsoft, and Yahoo are all offering a technology called "real-time bidding," Web advertisers can purchase ad space that appears "in the milliseconds between the time someone enters a site's Web address and the moment the page appears." That means an advertiser can effectively know what a site visitor is looking for and serve up a related ad instantly.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 12, 2010 01:20 PM
Bubbly is boiling hot in India, with 500,000 users signing up in the first four weeks after launch. The cell phone service enables users to "broadcast" voice messages to a mass audience of followers.
A user signs up to follow family, friends, brands, or a celebrity. Following and posting messages is free. But when a new message is recorded and dispatched, the user receives an alert and can opt to listen for a fee. Average messages are shorter than 30 seconds, and the present cap is one minute.
Bubble Motion, the company behind the Bubbly service, has a revenue sharing business model with resident telecoms, in India, Reliance Communications and Bharti Airtel. Bubble Motion takes a slice of the airtime used for message listening.Continue reading...
Posted by Ben Berkon on March 11, 2010 04:04 PM
Despite the enormous popularity of video games like Rock Band and Guitar Hero, the music video game category has also experienced its fair share of ridicule from humorists and musicians regarding its obsessive, yet faux music sensibilities. However, Seven45 Studios, an offshoot of musical-instrument maker First Act, is trying to bridge the gap between sofa simulations and real-life, gritty jam sessions.
Its “Power Gig: Rise of the SixString” video game will not only produce similar musically interactive game play as its predecessors, but more importantly, it will feature a real six-string guitar as its controller. Considering gamers have been wielding plastic, toy-like replica instruments, the transition to real instruments should go a long way in appeasing the “haters.”Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 11, 2010 12:51 PM
Think Post-It Notes gone viral-digital. Barcode stickers that hold messages in text, video, audio, or photo – triggered when scanned. A sci-fi log line? Nope. Stickybits is a mobile app for Android and iPhones that tracks virtual messages among peers, friends, and customers – all brought together by a common bar code.
A sort of digital tag, a barcode is programmed by the first user’s scan. The next person to scan that barcode receives the embedded message on their phone, and can add a new message – creating a stream connected to a place or an object where the barcode is located.
Using SimpleGeo's technology, Stickybits geolocates the barcodes to show where they are scanned and then follows the object and the evolving storyline. A user can switch between map views and streams and trail other people’s object streams. The app lets you know when new bits are added. The actual app is free, but 20 vinyl barcode stickers cost $10.Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on March 11, 2010 12:06 PM
In pre-recession days, branding was a big deal for technology companies. Splashy, lavish marketing campaigns were used to tout a tech brand's key attributes and get consumers to take notice. Those days are gone, but now H-P (Hewlett-Packard) is bringing back the glitz with a new eight-week, $40 million ad campaign – its first in more than five years.
The new branding campaign, "Let's Do Amazing," breaks this weekend and will run on high-profile television shows, such as the NCAA March Madness basketball tournament on CBS. The ads sport a slick dimensionalized version of H-P's staid logo, and the campaign has a hip, humorous tone.Continue reading...
Posted by Ben Berkon on March 10, 2010 10:35 AM
If you tuned into the 82nd Annual Academy Awards this past weekend, besides seeing Alec and Steve, Sandra and Jeff, and James and Kathryn, you also saw Apple’s first commercial for the iPad. It’s very possible Apple fanboys were more excited for the ad than many award-winners were for their respective Oscars. And now that we've had a few days for the commercial to settle in, it's time to gauge its effectiveness.
At first glance, the commercial appeared flawless. It was a classic Apple ad that perfectly illustrated the exciting and sexy features of their much-hyped, state-of-the-art product. However, beneath the spectacle of the actual device was the curious reality that the iPad was sitting on a person’s lap the entire time. Yes, we all saw how amazing the various functions were – but isn’t the iPad supposed to be a sleek, portable device? If that’s the case, the iPad in the commercial came across as a little, well... big.Continue reading...