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RIM Is Now BlackBerry But Will It Matter?

BlackBerry is trying to be cool again.

It’s no longer Research in Motion (RIM). It’s just BlackBerry. OK nice start. But then we switch into hype mode by their ‘hiring’ of Alicia Keys as BlackBerry’s Global Creative Director. Oh and there is the marketing play promoted in this video

I get it. They want to be cool. They want to be relevant. But didn’t BlackBerry miss that train quite a few years ago?

So will you be considering handing in your iPhone or Android device for a BlackBerry any time soon?

Android Has Upper Hand in Mobile Marketshare

There sure is more doubt about the vaunted position of Apple in the marketplace these days, isn’t there? Whether it is warranted or not is a discussion for Android and Apple fan bois to fight out on neutral turf somewhere else.

What seems to be trending though are reports like this that comes from Strategy Analytics which show Android being quite dominant in 2012.

Global Smartphone OS Shipments and Market Share Q4 2012

TechCrunch reports

Commenting on the results, Neil Mawston, Executive Director at Strategy Analytics, described Google’s platform as the “undisputed volume leader” of the smartphone industry. ”Android’s share of the global smartphone market has surged… crushing Symbian, Bada and other platforms in its wake,” he said in a statement. “Android’s challenge for 2013 will be to defend its leadership, not only against Apple, but also against an emerging wave of hungry challengers that includes Microsoft, Blackberry, Firefox and Tizen.”

Twitter Partners with Vine to Share Mini Looped Videos

If you’re into six second videos then Twitter has a fun, new tool for you called Vine. (Shouldn’t it be called branch? Get it? Twitter bird – tree branch. . . )

Vine is a camera gizmo for the iPhone. You use it to shoot a six second video and then the app creates an auto loop so it plays over and over and over and over. . . you get the picture. Here’s a sample:

It makes me dizzy but I have it on good authority that it will be popular with Millennials, so prepare for the shaky, bouncy, loopy onslaught.

Google Helps Audi Drivers Get Around

Google has teamed with Audi using Google Maps and Google Earth to help drivers find what they need and to more safely get from Point A to Point B.

In the process they are catering to a high end crowd that likely make corporate decisions as well. Hey, I bet the “if it’s good enough for Audi it’s good enough for us” strategy has more impact than one might think.

Here is a video from the Google Lat Long blog showing the service in a perfect world.

Notice that the language used to describe the program stays in line with the ‘beautiful’ motif that Google is using everywhere. Here it is ‘elegant’. That’s a far cry from the ‘engineered by engineers for engineers’ motto that seemed to define Google since the beginning.

Facebook Mobile App #1 in US, Beating Google Maps

Well, if Apple was looking to take a bite out of Google with its own native Maps app it appears that it has worked, at least in the short term.

According to comScore, Facebook has replaced Google Maps as the top mobile app in the US in 2012.

Google_Maps_App_vs._Facebook_App_Image_1

That is certainly interesting but Google need not fret based on the following data also from comScore

Top_US_Mobile_Apps_Ranked_by_Unique_Visitors

What should be of most interest is that Google Play number. No matter what statistics or reports or whatever come out, it is obvious that Android’s position in the mobile world is growing and marketers will ignore this at their own risk.

Are you surprised by these results?

There’s A New Mobile OS in Town: Firefox

Thought it was enough to have iOS and Android mobile platform concerns while still knowing that BlackBerry is still lurking about?

Well, now you can check out a developers version of the new Firefox mobile OS.

Firefox OS

From the Mozilla announcement

Firefox OS is a new mobile operating system built entirely using open web standards. In Firefox OS, HTML5 apps can do “phone things” – they can make the phone vibrate, make a phone call or send a text message.

This week we are announcing our new Firefox OS developer preview phones because we believe that developers will help bring the power of the web to mobile. These developer phones are being developed by Geeksphone in partnership with Telefonica and Geeksphone.

Experts Predict 14 Billion Dollar Increase in Mobile Commerce in 2013

sephora to goMobile has been very, very good to beauty product retailer Sephora. Speaking at Mobile Marketer’s Mobile FirstLook: Strategy 2013 conference, exec Johnna Marcus noted that the company saw a 167% increase in mobile orders last year, a 75% rise in mobile traffic and more than 50% of their email opens are now coming in from mobile devices.

Their goal is to develop mobile as a consumer’s personal shopper delivering reviews, keeping track of preferred brands and highlighting hot, new items on an on-going basis. They’re also highly invested in the concept of a mobile wallet that integrates with the Sephora gift card. And see that scan button in the upper corner of the app? That allows consumers to scan barcodes on in-store packages or items in their girlfriend’s purse in order to instantly see reviews and buying options. It’s a make-up lovers dream.