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Carrier IQ: It Must Be A Big Deal If Sen. Franken Speaks Up!

There is a lot of privacy and mobile phone these days as it relates to the software that exists on many (if not most) smartphones call Carrier IQ.

It’s to be used, in its purest sense, to help carriers ID network issues. Ah but as with so many other things in the Internet space, it can do so much more and most of it is what no one should be doing which is watching everything you do on your phone including claims of tracking keystrokes. If you want the complete and gory details you can find articles here, here and here. Apparently, the software is used by AT&T and Sprint but not Verizon and Google claims no affiliation with the software and Apple stopped with iOS5.

Video Ad Are Increasing and So Are the Views

Everyone expects to see commercial breaks when they sit down to watch TV, but commercial breaks on online videos. . . that’s another thing.

When sites like YouTube began offering up short-form entertainment, people weren’t willing to watch a commercial, before, during or after. So they slapped an Adsense banner ad across the bottom of the vid and called it the cost of doing business.

But online video has experienced explosive growth in the past year and video ads have grown right along with it. Look at these numbers from FreeWheel:

Foursquare Launches Improved ‘To Do List’ Save Button

You’re reading New York magazine online when you spot a review of a new sushi restaurant. It’s in a part of the city you go to a few times a month, and you’d like to check it out. If only you had an easy way to remember all the details. . .

Introducing, the new and improved Save to Foursquare button! When a reader clicks the button, they get a pop-up that allows them to add the location to their Foursquare To Do list.

If the user has Radar enabled on their new iPhone, they’ll receive a notification when they are in the area, reminding them to stop by. Without Radar, notifications will only pop after check-in, which is rather pointless.

33% of Shoppers Use Apps or Websites to Help Them Grocery Shop

With grocery prices on the rise and incomes on the decline, consumers are looking for new ways to make ends meet. For 33% of them, it’s all about using digital resources to plan their weekly shopping trip.

Acosta Sales and Marketing has released a new report called “The Why Behind the Buy.” The report is all about trends in grocery shopping and what retailers and marketers can do to stay ahead of the game.

In general, Acosta found that consumers are more conservative than they’ve been in the past and that this behavior is the “new normal.” It’s happening because shoppers are spending 3% more on an average grocery run but they’re getting a lot less. As the main grocery shopper in my house, I can say for sure that that fact is true.

Lost Inside? There’s A Map for That

Google has introduced an Android only (makes sense) map function that will give you guidance when you are indoors (where available, of course). Malls, airports and more as listed in the Google LatLong blog.

Here’s Google’s video to give you the finer points

Cyber Monday Beats Black Friday

Cyber Monday is over (sort of) and the results are in. It’s a HIT!

According to IBM Benchmark, Cyber Monday sales were up 33% over last year. The average order value also rose from $193.24 to $198.26.

Unlike Black Friday, there were two peaks during the day, one at 11:05 PST and again late in the evening. Take a look at this comparison chart. Except for the early morning hours, Cyber Monday beat the pants off online Black Friday buying to the tune of  29.3%.

Just When You Thought it Was Safe. . .

Now, here’s what’s interesting. Part of the reason these big sale days work is because they’re special. 24 hours of the lowest prices and best deals. Yet, this morning, I woke up to emails from two retailers saying they were extending their sales for another 24 hours. So now it’s Cyber Tuesday?

Mobile Paid Search Offers Bigger Bang for the Buck

Now that more people are using their mobile devices to search and shop, more advertisers are paying for mobile ads — it’s the circle of life and it’s working out well for everyone involved.

New numbers from Performics show that smartphone CPCs are still a real bargain, coming in at around 40% less than desktop CPCs. The one mobile exception is the tablet, which, last week, rose 20% over desktop CPCs.

When compared to last year, mobile impressions and click shares are both way up. Says Performics:

“We now predict that mobile paid search will make up 25.4% of all clicks (desktop + mobile) in December 2011, up 8 percentage points from our projection a month ago.”

For those visual learners in the bunch, here’s a graph that tells it like it is.