Mobile Users Expected to Redeem 10 Billion Coupons This Year

vons coupon appFor years, I’ve subscribed to the Sunday LA Times and the Orange County Register just to get the coupons. Thanks to these glossy bits of goodness, I save around $30 a week on my grocery bill which far outweighs the cost of the paper. But this past Monday, I noticed something. I didn’t cut the coupons on Sunday and I didn’t cut them out the week before either.¬† And you know what? I might cancel the paper altogether because now, I get all the coupons I need online and on my mobile phone.

A few weeks ago, I downloaded the new Vons grocery store app that lets you see which digital coupons are on your card and add new ones on the fly. It has completely changed the way I grocery shop.

Mobile Mix: 102 Million Mobile Users Play Games on Their Device

angry birds star warsFrom board games to the arcade, to dedicated consoles in our homes, we’ve proven our love of games over the years. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise to learn that there are over 100 million mobile gamers in the world.

Millennial Media has dedicated their January Mobile Mix report to the art of the game, noting that it’s been the leading app category for more than a year.

The big news for marketers, ad-supported revenue on game apps grew 119% year-over-year. That’s a lot of quarters.

Smartphones were responsible for 74% of the mobile game ad impressions with 64% coming from an Android device. That was higher than the average for all categories combined.

Small Business Owners Name LinkedIn as the Most Useful Social Network

wsj-most useful social mediaThe Wall Street Journal asked small business owners which social media sites they used most often and which had the most potential to be useful in the future.

As you can see, LinkedIn came out on top, not only as the most used but look at that potential score. They beat every other side, even Facebook, with a big stick.

But, as I’ve said many times before, results are results but how you interpret them can vary. In this case, I’d like to see what kinds of businesses answered this survey. I can totally understand LinkedIn being the number one choice if the majority of the companies were B2B. LinkedIn excels in the area of industry networking.

Multiple Balances, One Gift Card: Facebook Introduces a New Piece of Plastic

facebook gift cardAll hail the guy who invented the gift card. These nifty bits of plastic allow you to buy what you want with someone else’s money. It doesn’t get better than that.

The only downside to gift cards is that you have to carry them in your wallet, remember to use them and mentally keep track of how much is left on each one. Facebook has a solution – sort of.

Introducing the Facebook Card, which isn’t what you think it is when you hear the name.

The Facebook Card is a gift card that has nothing to do with Facebook except that you buy it through the site. Here’s how it works:

Taking Google’s New Image Search for a Test Drive

Last week, Google announced that they were going to make changes to their image search tool. They said it was going to be faster, more beautiful and more intuitive. Guess what – they were right.

Come along while I take Google’s new image search for a test drive.

Keyword: The Birds

At first, image search looks just like it did before the switch. But once you click on a photo, everything changes.

The chosen photo used to load in an iframe on top of the source page. This was cumbersome and didn’t always function as it was supposed to. Now, the rows split apart and the chosen photo appears in a wide, black bar that fills three-quarters of the screen.

Which is Better Mobile Apps or Mobile Sites?

app development snipThe first month I owned an iPhone, I discovered that not all websites are created equal. Many of my favorite sites were hard to read or totally inaccessible through the browser on my phone. Apps, however, were a joy to behold and I couldn’t get enough of them.

Now that I’m more of an iPad user, the browser is less of a problem. I still run into sites that don’t function properly but it’s not as big of an issue. (At the moment, I’m unhappy with CBS.com because I can’t watch full episodes of their shows via my iPad.)

I don’t know if it’s the iPad that is making the difference, but I suspect that more websites have taken the time to optimize for mobile. Going forward, we should see even more sites coming around thanks to HTML5, a collection of coding options that makes websites more responsive, more interactive, more impressive.

Happy Belated Data Privacy Day!

data privacyYesterday was Data Privacy Day. I can’t believe I missed it. It probably slipped by me while I was carefully deleting my browser history, cookie cache, old social media accounts, personal photos and every bit of contact information from the web. Whew, that was quite a job.

While I was doing that, sites all over the internet were posting reports to show how seriously they take this issue of internet privacy.

Google updated their transparency report this month to include a breakdown of legal requests by type. You can now see how many subpenas and search warrants were issued. They recieved 21,389 requests for information from July to December of 2012.