The Benefits of Separating Core Apps

So,

Like everyone else we got another Google Now update today. I count at least 4 updates since Google Now went live on JB in July. Google’s core apps, are not built into the Android OS, so these Apps can be updated at any given time multiple times between release cycles keeping Google’s apps fresh and up to date.

I feel this separation of apps might create an issue for Apple trying to keep up with Google’s apps. Google Now is a perfect example, where it has been updated about 4 times in about 6 Months, Siri has been updated about 3 times in the past year. This allows Google to just load features when they are ready instead of having to wait for a major OS update that cannot happen that often. In addition Google has even moved the Calendar app into the app store, which shows a trend. I think by the time Android 5.0 comes out we might start seeing the Phone app and SMS app move to the play store allowing people to choose a Nexus like experience by just downloading the app.

I really think that integrated messaging will be next major thing on Android, and it will most likely be the evolution of Google Talk. Basically an API based messaging app that can link into Facebook, whatsapp, and others. With Google Voice having the option to integrate itself into the app, similar to what happens with the Voicemail and Phone app. The how crazy part here is that it would start as a downloadable app, like chrome started. Google will probably update every other month fast tracking the features and integration, and probably finally make it the default app on the next OS release.

Ok I’m starting to ramble…

Long story short if Apple is really trying to compete move away from the perceived OS staleness, moving their Core Apps out the OS and into the App Store on a more frequent update cycle might be the way to go. It would make the competition intense and force all companies to really start thinking outside the box with the future of their OS’

What do you all think?

The Nexus Line and VoLTE…Why it Matters

Folks,

I know some are still having a hissy fit about the Nexus 4 not having LTE, but hey it is what it is and we will get over it. However it is the move that Google had to make because Google has a plan under it’s sleaves it has been working on since Verizon bought all that tasty LTE Spectrum

First lets talk about LTE

Verizon won the C Block spectrum in March of 2008, bringing the rise of LTE and crazy data speeds on are mobile devices. Everyone was like Google might get into the mobile business as they were bidding on the Spectrum, when in all reality they were setting the reserve price to ensure Open-Access to that block of Spectrum. Verizon won, we have LTE, and the rest is history.

So What Happened to Open Access?

Open Access is still a provision. Which is probably the reason Verizon never really came after folks who rooted their phones and used wireless tethering apps. They were actually fined for trying to block these apps in the Play Store, so the Open Access provisions are alive and kicking. This makes some people wonder why is this a problem then? Because Verizon still uses CDMA for voice services. They basically have an hybrid LTE CDMA model. So in turn they are still allowed to lock down their phones due to the need of CDMA. Updates for the Galaxy Nexus is more of an issue because VZW requires all this rigorous testing for their CDMA network, not necessarily the LTE network.

So VoLTE?

VoLTE is basically Voice carried over your data connection. For Verizon it means it will not have to provide both a LTE and CDMA chip in their phones. Phones will only need a LTE chip and in theory, you will no longer need a voice plan because everything including voice calls are transferred over data. It also means the Open-Access rules are now in full effect, so Verizon cannot lock down phones on the basis of it still needing a CDMA chip. LTE is currently being trialed by Verizon in select cities with plans for Nationwide roll out in 2013.

What it Means for Google and Nexus

Google’s Nexus line will easily be able to do a unlocked LTE version for Verizon due to the Open-Access provisions which went into effect purely based on Google’s huge opening bid in 2008. With no CDMA, Verizon will no longer have control because of those provisions enforced by the FCC. I’m sure Google wanted to work with Verizon, but they also new that soon Verizon will have no choice. Once VoLTE goes nation wide, expect an unlocked LTE Nexus using this technology, probably priced about $100 more than the GSM version.

All this matters because VoLTE is the future of mobile phones. I think we will soon start seeing purely data plans being available for users to use with both Voice and Data. Google though has done something smart. They have set the price for a high quality unlocked device, and they have set that price low. I imagine a the next Nexus will support VoLTE on Verizon, it will be unlocked, and will cost $400 compared to an unlocked GSM version for $350, as LTE licensing cost a lot more. This will also allow Google to build the device as they want to with Updates coming directly from Google and Carriers being removed completely from the process

So I see these things happening within the Mobile world in the nest 2 years

  • VoLTE going live nationwide within a year
  • Unlimited Data Plans making their way back
  • Unlocked Better priced Contract Free Mobile devices. No more $650 Off contract phones
  • More competition, with more and more customers becoming month to month non contract users

So yes I was besides myself about Josh’s review, and I do wish that Google had a LTE Nexus available, but Google is working on something and I think next year we will see the beginning of a change to the mobile industry for the better. So just Chillax, the time of carriers forcing their hand will soon come to an end.

Apple vs Samsung…Let the Cat fighting begin

Ok let me first start by saying, that if anyone knows me well I carry a significant disdain for Apple, as I am an Blackberry turned Android fan.  Nonetheless, I love technology I do appreciate what Apple has done within the technology space, even though I can careless about their devices. Soooooo if you do see a bias in what I am bout to right, just be warned I told you..

Now Monday was the start of this highly anticipated, so called “technology trial of the century” between Apple and Samsung over what I believe to be utter bull.  You can check The Verges Guide to the trial if you want some more details and opinions over what is what but the key is this.

Apple said Samsung copied its designs which are patented.  These include:

  • The front speaker slot, uncluttered front face, display borders and the edge-to-edge glass of a smartphone.
  • The home button, uncluttered front face, rounded corners and the front edge border of a smartphone.
  • The general grid layout for icons, and a dock of separate icons at the bottom of a mobile device display.
  • The thin bezel, outer edge border, rounded corners, edge-to-edge front glass, and minimalist aesthetics on the front, sides and back of a tablet.

I think this case is BS, Yes Apple did bring something innovative with the iPhone in 2007, but the industry was moving in that direction anyway. We all know that almost every pocket PC out there no matter how ugly they were, was basically a touch screen.  In addition the LG Prada Phone…yes I went there, won a European design award in 2007.  My question to Apple, what gives you the right to monopolize the rights to a square device with a touch screen?

LJ Prada Phone

Now I won’t go into details, but Apple’s abuse of the Patent system to get broad patents to stifle competition and innovation disgust me.  Consumers are not that dumb, the strong majority of us know the difference between an iPhone and some other touch screen device.  Trust me if we are about to drop 299.00 on a device which we will be stuck with for 2 years, I’m sure we are completely clear if this is an iPhone or not.  In the end this trial is really about us, wether you are an Android, iOS, Windows, etc..fan, you should not want anyone to win this trial.

Here is the thing all companies learn from each other which allows for companies to innovate their products further.  Yes Android, moved to a full touch screen device when the iPhone was released, but they added new innovations like Widgets, Notification Center, and deeper customization.  Apple learned from Android with their Notification Center which included a type of widget.  None of these companies would be where they are by themselves.  So everyone should just shut-up and give me a phone that can cooks me dinner!!!

Hmmm…about these Emergency Exit Tools

Ok, I was reading my favorite gadget blog…Gizmodo..you should take a gander one day, and I came across this exit tool thing.  Offered here: Exit Tool Thngy Now at first I was like yoooo!!! this is so cool..I mean if i crash my car into the River..God forbid, i can pull out my little exit tool thingy and MacGyver my way out to safety.  Right?

Wrong!!!!!  Can someone please tell me an individual who is thinking logically enough to try to figure out how to use things while they are minutes away from being engulfed in water.  Seriously, now I guess you can do a trial run…you know like a kindergarden fire drill.  Remember those…..your teaching saying, “Everyone walk in a straight line….Don’t run children.”  Yeah like if the school is on fire we are going to walk in straight lines out to a safe point.   Ok…but I digress…back to the exit tool thingy.   The issue here is that you really don’t test these things out until you are actually faced with the situation.  I mean what are you going to do if it doesn’t work…call customer service as a your car fills with water and steadily drops to the bottom of the river?  Can you imagine….”Please Press 1 for english”  Hillarious

So I know what your saying…”HeCareth, do you have a better ideah?”

Yes I do, instead of trying to buy some fancy cutesy little tool that makes you think your all high tech and safe…and then find out at the most inopportune time that it doesn’t work.  I have a cheap simple way………are you ready.

BAM

Yep a pocket knife and a baseball bat.  So simple a child can use it…and guaranteed not to file in the time of need.  LOL!!!  Anyways people Until next time…..

~H “Dot”