The iPhone vs. Android: What’s the Big Difference?

Look, I’m Team Apple all the way and my Droid geeky friends get sick of posting about Mac products all the time. I’m not paid by Apple and I don’t get paid to blog about gadgets (although, if you know of a gig like that opening up can you PLEASE let me know!). I’m just a power user and a Geek Diva Gadget Girl who likes her techie toys. I’m in love with my iPhone, my Mac Pro and I can hardly contain myself waiting for the new iPad 2. But, if you’re still on the fence and want a comparison between the two hottest smartphone options on the planet (sorry Blackberry, I abandoned you in 2009… RIM sucks the big one… OK, truth be told I still have a Blackberry but that’s beside the point) then this article may help you decide.

Amplify’d from manofthehouse.com
 Thesmartphone has become the Swiss Army knife of the 21st century: endlessly useful, cool, and a necessary tool that every man should carry. The difference is that smart phones carry a hefty cost, and they’re not all designed equally well.Two of the most popular smartphones are the ubiquitous Apple iPhone and its new challenger, Google’s Android platform. Here’s a look at how the two phone giants stack up.

Usability

First, we need to be clear about something. There’s no official “Android” phone, just as there’s no official “Windows” computer. Android is simply the name for Google’s mobile operating system, and as such, it’s somewhat difficult to compare the iPhone to Android without being biased. Many functions of the iPhone seem to work more intuitively than those on Android phones, but that’s mainly because the iPhone and its operating system were designed to work together, while Android was designed to be used on a variety of phones made by a variety of manufacturers.

Therefore, if you’re looking for that “wow, cool!” factor, you’re probably going to be more impressed with what the iPhone has to offer. Every function of the iPhone seems to work effortlessly, with intuitive touch-screen controls that have made it the weapon of choice for countless hipsters in coffee shops everywhere. However, most of what the iPhone offers is available on Android phones. You want the web? The Android phones can get you there. You want a touch screen? Android phones have that, too. In fact, the best Android phone currently available, the Nexus One, feels completely natural.

The big difference is that the iPhone is a single device, while Android is a software platform. That makes a straight comparison difficult but not impossible; it’s like comparing Macs to PCs, as many bloggers have noted. Apple carefully controls everything available on its iPhone. Google’s Android, on the other hand, offers its adherents something else: freedom to do whatever you’d like with your phone.

Read more at manofthehouse.com

Why the Verizon iPhone Doesn’t Spell Disaster for AT&T

Could it be true? Is Verizon REALLY fianally getting the iPhone this time… really? According to Mashable.com, even if they do, it won’t mean the end for AT&T. Some customers won’t be able to afford to jump ship and others may not want to do so. As for me, I’m not getting out of my contract until AT&T gets the iPhone 5 and launches their 4G network! If they make it worth my while and one has to assume that a Verizon competition will do just that, I could come out ahead. Oh, and if AT&T gets their 4G network right, it’s a wrap for me… I’m staying put. All eyes are on this new deal… let’s see what happens.

Amplify’d from mashable.com

Verizon is about to deliver a blow to AT&T when it ends the network’s exclusive hold on the iPhone, but it definitely won’t be the end of the world for the second largest carrier in the U.S.

Earlier this week, Verizon announced a press event next Tuesday in New York City. All signs indicate that Verizon will introduce the iPhone on its network and launch it in the next few weeks. At this point, nobody should be surprised: it’s Apple’s worst-kept secret.

Since the news broke about Verizon’s event, there has been no shortage of media reports about the potential negative impact of the Verizon iPhone on AT&T. Some of it has devolved into (justifiable) AT&T bashing, and some predict that it’ll be a major or even mortal blow to the nation’s second largest network.

Let’s take a step back and keep some objective perspective, though. While the Verizon iPhone will have a negative impact on AT&T, it’s not going to break AT&T’s back. The network has been preparing itself for the loss of its iPhone exclusivity contract for a long time. It’s ready to do battle with Verizon.


Huge Switching Fees


While a group of early adopters are likely to burn their contracts and switch to Verizon on day one, the vast majority of people will not. The reason is that the switching costs are simply too high.

AT&T made a smart business decision last year: they bumped up the iPhone’s early termination fee. If consumers want to switch, the first fee they will have to pay is the ETF, giving AT&T even more money to pad its profits.

The second fee is the cost of the Verizon iPhone. The AT&T iPhone 4 is based on UMTS 3G technology, while the Verizon iPhone will be based on Verizon’s CDMA 3G tech. The result is that consumers will have to buy a new iPhone and a new contract. While they can sell their AT&T iPhones, it won’t offset the cost of a new contract and it definitely won’t offset the cost of that early termination fee.

While some consumers can afford to switch, the vast majority don’t have that kind of money and are on family plans that they won’t abandon immediately.

There is at least one more switching fee for AT&T users who want to jump to Verizon: the switch from UMTS to CDMA. UMTS is a more prevalent 3G standard for a simple reason: it’s a better technology. AT&T actually does have the fastest 3G network in the U.S. and it does have the advantage of being able to send and receive data and voice at the same time, while the Verizon iPhone will not be able to do data while on a phone call.


We May Hate AT&T, but It Has a Response Plan


Of course, people will rightly point out that a faster 3G network means nothing if you can’t even connect to 3G in the first place.

Verizon has a lot of advantages over AT&T. It has the largest 3G network coverage in the U.S. More importantly, it doesn’t have the distinction of being the nation’s most despised wireless carrier. I basically gave up on my iPhone at CES in Las Vegas this week and relied on my Verizon Droid 2 instead. It’s utterly embarrassing that AT&T still has these kinds of problems over three years since the iPhone’s debut.

Oh, and the Verizon iPhone will reportedly offer unlimited data as a slap in AT&T’s fast.

That’s not enough to take down AT&T though, and the carrier is ready to fight back against the Verizon iPhone threat. When the iPhone 5 rolls out sometime this summer, both networks will pull out all the stops in order to get consumers. Price cuts, heavy advertising and incentive offerings will be plentiful later this year. Verizon is going to take some AT&T customers, but it won’t get them without a fight.

At the same time, AT&T is stocking up on some powerful phones to complement the iPhone. Motorola debuted the ATRIX 4G at CES last week, a 1GHz dual-core processing beast that sports a 960×540 qHD screen, a 1,930mAH battery and a full GB of RAM. It even has a dock that lets you use your Android phone and a full version of Firefox on the same screen.

It was the best phone to debut at CES, and it is exclusive to AT&T.

The carrier will try to pull away happy Android phone users from Verizon and other networks with competitive contracts and a new line of ridiculously powerful phones. With phones like the ATRIX, Verizon won’t be having all the Android fun.


The Bottom Line


The bottom line is that AT&T isn’t going to be hemorrhaging users on Verizon iPhone launch day due to switching costs, and AT&T has strong profits and a strong line of phones coming to market this year that will keep it competitive, including the iPhone.

The Verizon iPhone isn’t likely to change the fate of either company. Instead, the future of both carriers will depend on the speed and strength of their 4G network rollouts. Verizon has started its 4G rollout and AT&T will begin its 4G launch later this year. AT&T’s past sins could be forgiven if it succeeds in rolling out a reliable 4G network, but failure could cement its rather poor reputation.

Yes, the Verizon iPhone will negatively impact AT&T. However, to say that it will put AT&T on the ropes is just silly. The intense battle between these two carriers is going to play out for years to come, and both have tricks up their sleeves that will continually change the rules of engagement.

Read more at mashable.com

 

iPhone Fingerprint and Face Recognition Add-On for Law Enforcement

iPhone add-on that’s a bit out of the ordinary offering law enforcement fiingerprint, face and iris recognition. I like my iPhone more and more every day!

Amplify’d from www.mediabistro.com
 Here’s something that qualifies as an iPhone accessory that is a bit out of the ordinary. MORIS from BI(2) Technologies is a hardware add-on for the iPhone that provide law enforcement personnel the ability to perform:

– Iris recognition
– Facial recognition
– Fingerprint identification

See more at www.mediabistro.com

 

Video courtesy of BI2Technologies

iPhone users are the most loyal smartphone owners

The smartphone war continues! Worldwide, it seems iPhone users are sticking with their Apple smartphone. For me, I love the Apple interface of the Mac Book Pro, iPhone, iPod(s) and iPad. I’m not so sure that I’m loyal to the product line as much as I want an seemless interaction between my most used devises and therefore I stick with Apple. Well, that and the fact that Apple offers great products. Either way, we’re winning customer loyalty… for now.

Amplify’d from www.mobile-ent.biz
iPhone users are the most loyal smartphone owners

59% say they’re sticking with iOS

New research from GfK claims that nearly six in ten iPhone owners plan to stay loyal to iOS – well ahead of rival smartphone operating systems.

35% of BlackBerry owners say they’ll stay loyal to RIM, while the results for Android, Symbian and Windows Mobile are 28%, 24% and 21% respectively.

The stats are important: they show how rapidly the smartphone market is changing. Symbian remains the most popular OS, but if 76% of those users are eyeing rival platforms, its share may slide fast in the next 12-18 months.

That said, Android’s low loyalty score is also surprising. Google is activating hundreds of thousands of devices a day, but it seems it has yet to engender Apple-level loyalty in its new users.

GfK’s research is based on an online survey of 2,653 mobile users in Brazil, Germany, Spain, the UK, the US and China.

Read more at www.mobile-ent.biz

Move over Apple, you may not be the sexiest phone afterall!

As the smartphone wars continue, it looks like the iPhone (my preference for it’s integration into all my other Apple products) is getting some stiffer competition. Will Apple’s culture hurt the iPhone?

Amplify’d from www.nytimes.com

If you want a smartphone powered by Google’s Android software, you could get Motorola’s Droid 2 or its cousin, the Droid X. Then there is the Droid Incredible from HTC, the Fascinate from Samsung and the Ally from LG.

Paul Sakuma/Associated Press -Steven P. Jobs, in 1984, presented the new Macintosh personal computer.

 

That’s just on Verizon Wireless. An additional 20 or so phones running Android are available in the United States, and there are about 90 worldwide.

But if your preference is an Apple-powered phone, you can buy — an iPhone.

That very short list explains in part why, for all its success in the phone business, Apple suddenly has a real fight on its hands.

Americans now are buying more Android phones than iPhones. If that trend continues, analysts say that in little more than a year, Android will have erased the iPhone’s once enormous lead in the high end of the smartphone market.

But this is not the first time Apple has found itself in this kind of fight, where its flagship product is under siege from a loose alliance of rivals selling dozens of competing gadgets.

In the early 1980s, the Macintosh faced an onslaught of competition from an army of PC makers whose products ran Microsoft software. The fight did not end well for Apple. In a few years, Microsoft all but sidelined Apple, and the company almost went out of business.

Can Apple, which insists on tight control of its devices, win in an intensely competitive market against rivals that are openly licensing their software to scores of companies? It faces that challenge not only in phones, but also in the market for tablet computers, where the iPad is about to take on a similar set of rivals.

“This is a really big strategic question,” said Toni Sacconaghi, an analyst with Sanford C. Bernstein and Company. “No one knows whether openness will ultimately prevail as it did on the PC.”

Apple declined to comment on the issue.

By some measures, the competition Apple faces this time is even more formidable than it was in PCs. In addition to the Android family, Apple already competes with Research In Motion, maker of the BlackBerry.

And the iPhone will soon have one more powerful, and familiar, foe: Microsoft. That company’s well-reviewed Windows Phone 7 software will appear in as many as nine new smartphones beginning next month. Others like Nokia cannot be counted out.

Read more at www.nytimes.com

Verizon iPhone 4 March 2011 debut stales Verizon iPhone 5 launch date

I am gonna need the arrival of the Verizon iPhone 4 (which I’ll believe when it actually arrives in the store) to NOT stop the roll out of the iPhone 5 on Verizon, AT&T or anywhere else.

It could be Apple is waiting for the roll out of the 4G network on both carriers. Then of course there are rumors that Verizon will be the only carrier to have the iPhone 5. Let’s not even talk about how unhappy that little rumor will make me should it come to fruition. I only came back to AT&T to get the iPhone 3Gs. Either way, can we please move past the iPhone 4? The bigger, better iPhone 5 is right around the corner and I WANT IT!

Amplify’d from www.beatweek.com

The Verizon iPhone 4’s early 2011 arrival, which many had interpreted to mean January 2011, is now being pegged as March 2011 by at least one analyst. This new date, if accurate, raises questions about the future of the iPhone roadmap. Apple has historically released a new iPhone model each June or July, going back to 2007. If that pattern holds, the iPhone 5 will arrive in June or July of 2011. In such a case, a Verizon iPhone 4 in January makes sense, as it would allow Apple to begin selling the iPhone to Verizon customers a good six months earlier than if it simply waited for the arrival for the iPhone 5 to do so. But a March arrival date for the Verizon iPhone would raise the question of whether the iPhone 5 is indeed on track for early summer release.

Sure, Apple wants to stop the rise of Verizon’s Droid platform in its tracks sooner rather than later, particularly seeing as how many of those Droid buyers freely admit that they actually want an iPhone but aren’t willing to leave Verizon. But the idea that Apple would take the trouble to put a Verizon-compatible iPhone 4 on the market for a mere three months, particularly with so much of the public aware that Apple releases new-generation iPhones in the summer, would border on overreaction.

Unless, of course, the iPhone 5 isn’t coming this summer after all.

What could be the holdup? The most obvious candidate would be the impending arrival of the 4G network on both Verizon and AT&T. If Apple plans to build the iPhone 5 to be 4G-compatible, then it could hold the iPhone 5’s release until the 4G network has been built out sufficiently on both carriers. Or Apple could opt to release the iPhone 5 at separate times on separate carriers, depending on each carrier’s 4G progress. In other words, the arrival of a Verizon iPhone 4 in March, followed by the arrival of the AT&T iPhone 5 in say, June, and then the arrival of a Verizon iPhone 5 sometime after that, is entirely possible. Apple has never rolled out an iPhone in that manner before. But then again, Apple has never previously had the iPhone available on multiple U.S. carriers.

Read more at www.beatweek.com

The iPhone 5 Rumor Mill and Other Stories for Early 2011

Rumors like… the iPhone 5 will only be coming to Verizon… it could be available by early 2011… it will be smaller, faster and better than before. Oh, and then there’s the rumor of a new iPad mini coming in 2011… but wait… isn’t that an iTouch? All I know is, if I became an AT&T customer just so I could get my beloved iPhone 3Gs (so glad I didn’t pay for an upgrade to the 4) and now the bigger, better, faster version will be on Verizon I will not… I repeat… I will NOT be a happier camper. Like Steve Jobs cares one way or the other about how happy I am.

Amplify’d from iphone5newsblog.com

Courtesy of deadzones.com

To every rumor, there is a season, and it’s especially true for the iPhone 5.

In July, the rumors about the new iPhone began to fly, and what was most interesting about them was the rumored delivery of the gadget. Reputable Apple news sources like iLounge were hearing chatter that the iPhone 5 would make its debut as early as January of 2011 — just 6 or 7 months after the release of the often hyped, sometimes maligned iPhone 4.

Building on to this rumor was that Verizon would be getting the iPhone 5, and that it would have all kinds of new additions and innovations that iPhone users have been jonesing for: a larger screen, an internal antenna, bump payment technology, and more. All of these rumors have led to even bigger questions about the future of the iPhone, its relationship with AT&T, its competition with Droid, and more.

But all of those fun rumors have now passed. We’re now in a new season of rumors: the season of skepticism.

Although there is no proof to the contrary, tech speculators are now beginning to doubt the iPhone 5 rumors — particularly the ones that have to do with an early 2011 release. As quickly as iPhone 5 fervor had embraced the notion that the new version could usher in the New Year, now the Apple intelligensia are poo-poo’ing the same rumors that they helped to foment. Do you feel like you’re getting jerked around a bit?

Well, you are.

The fact is, Apple’s PR department plays a prominent, albeit stealth role in these rumors. They are acutely aware of the rumors — perhaps they are even the author of them. And it makes perfect sense: what better way to keep the smart phone media and market focused on your company by drumming up copious amounts of free press and chatter about your company’s next product? While we all continue to debate whether and what the next iPhone will be, competitors like the Droid are left in the shade. Therefore, when rumors and information get “leaked” to the public, it is usually in the form of controlled leakage.

Read more at iphone5newsblog.com

Google Earth 3.1 Lets You Look UnderWater!

With the latest release of Google Earth 3.1 for iOS, you can now explore underwater landscapes and terrain on your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. By land or sea, Google Earth will take you there.

 

Looking for buried treasure? No problem, just use Google Earth. Want to know if your roof needs repair, just put in your home address (I’m not kidding, I saw a missing shingle thanks to Google Earth).

 

I kid about Google being in the world domination business but I don’t think I’m joking anymore. Gotta go, I’m using Google Earth to see what’s really going on under sea level at the Bermuda Triangle.

Amplify’d from googlemobile.blogspot.com
Dive below the ocean’s surface to explore underwater canyons, or travel to the ocean’s deepest point, the Mariana Trench. Once underwater, simply swipe the screen with two fingers to “look around.” You can always reset your view by clicking on the north arrow on the iPad, or on the compass on the iPhone and iPod.As with the desktop and other mobile versions of Google Earth, we’ve also added the “Ocean” layer, which features hundreds of photos and videos from more than 100 contributors curated by the Sylvia Earle Alliance.


This version also includes native support for the new Retina display, which means that if you have an iPhone 4 or the new iPod touch, you’ll get to enjoy an even sharper view of the world. 

Google Earth 3.2 for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch is available now in the App Store, or navigate to http://m.google.com/earth in your mobile browser. You can also download Google Earth by scanning this QR code:

For help or additional information, visit our help center.

Read more at googlemobile.blogspot.com

 

Apps Made into Books, Webisodes and Google Ventures

In an interesting twist, Rodale, the publisher of Men’s Health magazine, is reversing the trend from turning books into apps and is taking one of my favorite apps, Lose It! and turning it into a book.  Get it, taking an iPhone app… and turning it into a book.  That’s madness, madness I tell you!

According to Minonline.comMen’s Health announced late last week that it was acquiring the book publishing rights to the iPhone app, Lose It!.  It is one of my favorite apps because it allows you to track every calorie you consume and counter that with the calories you burned from your days exercise (assuming you did do some physical activity that day).  Then it calculates what your daily caloric intake should be for the day and let’s you know if you can have that extra cookie or if you need to skip your next meal altogether.  The best part is you get to see how much physical activity can really impact your daily calorie consumption and it makes me want to work out more so I can eat more.  I’m not one of those diet girls.  I like my food.  You can also invite friends to join you and share in the fun (she says with sarcasm dripping off her lips) to either keep you honest, share in your pain or encourage you on.  I have to admit I’m not doing very well with sharing my information, maybe because I’m also not doing very well watching my calories.  But that’s a whole other story, what’s news here is an app is going to be made into a book.   I sure hope it’s an eBook or I’m probably not going to read it!  Here’s the story:

Minonline.com reports that The Lose It! calorie counter and dieting companion from publisher  FitNow has been the top free health app in the iTunes App Store for over a year, Rodale claims, and is used by more than 175,000 people a day. Rodale is purchasing North American rights to bring the title to book form. The book will be written by Charles Teague, co-founder and CEO of FitNow, along with New York Times science columnist Anahad O’Conner and will demonstrate that calorie control, activity and a support system are the keys to weight loss.

The app itself lets people track both their caloric intake and exercise, and the book will explore both dimensions of weight loss and research showing how important support systems are in the battle of the bulge.

In other news, in a press release issued by 7-Eleven, come Monday, the convenience store chain is launching a web-based reality show in partnership with portal TV giant. blip.tv.  The series,  being produced by blip.tv, will allow the audience to follow along at their computers as two teams travel across the country surviving only on what they can find at… wait for it… 7-Eleven stores nationwide.  They will have challenges and gain points along the way and the first to cross the finish line at the Indy 500 wins.   Call me skeptical but why am I watching this?  Someone with a better mind for online viewing habits than I thinks it’s a great idea because they have distribution with AOL Video, iTunes, Yahoo and others.  The webisodes will stream on  711roadtrip.com, and Tweets and Facebook posts will track the daily activities of the competing teams.  They also have some  heavy hitter sponsors with Miller Lite, Oscar Myers, and Nabisco, just to name a few.  On your mark, set, got get a slurpee from 7-Eleven and don’t come back until you have a purple straw!

Last but not least, there’s some Google news.  The technology powerhouse of a company that’s all about World Domination (my term… not a part of their marketing material),  recently revamped their website, where you can find out more about the people that make up the growing Google Ventures team as well as information on the 10 currently announced portfolio companies.  From investments teams to a handful of start-ups, Google Ventures in now unveiled.

Confessions Of A Gadget Girl (and why I left BlackBerry)

Blacberry vs. iPhones, it’s an ongoing battle and I just switched teams!

I’m a gadget girl from way back.  I remember when I got my hands on a PalmPilot for the very first time.  It was well over a decade ago and back then I was one of the first people to have one.  I used it to organize my entire life, appointments, addresses, my calendar it was the best thing since slices bread.  No, it was better!.  A relic by today’s standards by sure, but back then it was high tech.  Called a personal digital assistant, PDA for short, it was my fist gadget addiction and it started me down a road of “toys” I have yet to recover from.

I couldn’t live without my PDA and that silly little stylus that to this day I have no idea how I didn’t misplace time after time.  Then Motorola rolled out the Motorola two-way pager and I tell you, I was in love.  From there I went through a series of Palm devises until I landed on the mother load… the Blackberry.  My first one was big as all get out and the screen was a lackluster green with black letter.  But the draw wasn’t it’s looks, it was the fact that I could get multiple emails to my handheld device.  This means I was no longer tied to my desk!  This also meant I would end up working all hours of the day and night because I became addicted to that flashing red button and I had to know who was contacting me.

Over the years I’ve had at least seven or eight BlackBerry devises.  They rolled them out updated, new and improved and I bought a new one almost each and every time.  In my lifetime I’ve given at least four away, have had one stolen, recommend their use over 100 times and had one I only used for a month.  Through them all I remained a loyal fan. UNTIL last month.

As the iPhone and Android phone wars dragged on I stood by my Blackberry.  “I like to feel my keys” I said.  “I can’t stand AT&T”, I moaned.  Then, something started to happen.  Blackberry’s RIM technology started to fail.   Developed by Canadian company Research In Motion (RIM) caught many BlackBerry users off guard in a series of nationwide outages.  I wasn’t a part of the first outage but the second one hit me hard and the third outage had me out of commission for over 18 hours.  Normally, this would be an issue.  However, I was about to go to the SXSW® Interactive Festival, a conference of cutting-edge technologies, the brings together the world’s most creative web developers, designers, bloggers, wireless innovators, content producers, programmers, widget inventors and new media entrepreneurs in Austin, Texas.  There was no way I was going to be able to travel without a Smartphone.  So… I… a most loyal BlackBerry customer jumped ship.

The day after my BlackBerry RIM outage I looked into getting an iPhone.  I landed on an iPhone because I’m a Mac girl and it just seemed to make sense.  Well, let me tell you this… for a techie, geeky, gadget girl… the iPhone is like technology CRACK.  I am absolutely in LOVE with this phone.  I also love all the phone wars I have with me friends who take our Smartphones way to seriously!  “Do you have a signal?  No? Ha! I do.”  Or, “you can’t check into Foursquare?  LOL… I can!.”  Folks get very territorial and defensive about their Smartphones… especially Power Users (I just love that title) like myself and my techie friends.

Well, it seems I’m not alone in abandoned BlackBerry.  A new report from Business Week says  RIM shares are sinking as BlackBerry indicates prices are declining.  Well, that’s what happens when you have several nationwide outages.  Here’s a portion of the article.  Click here for the full story:

April 1 (Bloomberg) — Research In Motion Ltd. fell the most in five months in Nasdaq trading after saying prices for the BlackBerry handset are dropping, signaling its push into developing countries may hurt profitability.

The average price of a BlackBerry sold to a carrier was $311 last quarter and will drop to between $305 and $310 this quarter, the company said yesterday. RIM projected gross margin, the percentage of sales left after production costs, of 44.5 percent, down from 45.7 percent in the previous period.

Profit margins may shrink further as RIM expands into countries such as Indonesia and China to counter slowing growth in North America, said Pierre Ferragu, an analyst with Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. in London. Costs to develop new products, which climbed 46 percent last quarter, also may weigh RIM down as it vies for customers with Apple Inc. and Motorola Inc.