May 29, 2011

Droid 3 details leaked: dual-core processor, 4-inch qHD screen, no LTE?

Droid 3
You've probably already seen the leaked pictures of the Droid 3, but what you really want to know is what's going on underneath that chrome trim. TechnoBuffalo claims to have the inside scoop and it sounds like the latest landscape slider from Motorola is packing a number of nice improvements. According to a tipster the screen has been upgraded to a 4-inch qHD panel and inside is one of those fancy dual-cores all the cool phones are rockin' these days -- presumably of the Tegra 2 variety like itsDroid X2 cousin. As spied in the photos it also has a new 5-row keyboard layout and front facing camera for video calls, while the rear-facing shooter is getting bumped to 8 megapixels. There is one disappointing, but not entirely shocking, detail though -- the Droid 3 will lack LTE. We can't confirm these specs, but they're perfectly logical assumptions and raise no alarms and no surprises.

Toyota reveals “Toyota Friend” social media network

In recent years many automakers have gone to extremes to deliver information via creative avenues of existing social media platforms, but now Toyota has taken things to an entirely new level by co-creating its very own social media network: Toyota Friend.

Toyota Friend is largely the result of a collaboration between automaker Toyota and customer relation software (CRM) software developer Salesforce. The unlikely duo have formed a strategic alliance to build Toyota Friend, which will act as a private social network for Toyota customers and their cars.

The new service will be gradually rolled out, first in Toyota’s domestic market of Japan only in 2012 and only for owners of electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids. These customers will then be able to network amongst themselves, as well as with their cars, the dealership and Toyota. Hit read more for details.

Microsoft Earns More From Android Than It Does From Windows Phone

Now here's an interesting find ... apparently Microsoft makes more money from Android than it does from Windows Phone. This rather odd arrangement, according to Citi analyst Walter Pritchard, came about due to Microsoft's lawsuit against HTC last year. The settlement saw HTC agreeing to pay Microsoft $5 for every Android handset they shipped. With HTC having shipped some 30 million devices that's a total of $150 million heading Microsoft's way.

Compare this with the 2 million Windows Phone licenses Microsoft has sold, which are estimated to cost around $15 a pop. That's $30 million, a lot of money sure, but far from the figure received from HTC.

Microsoft are also suing other Android device manufacturers and with a precedent already set by HTC Microsoft are in with a good chance of getting similar deals from them too. That should see Microsoft's earnings from Android increase even further.

Android Not The Place To Do Business For Paid Apps

A long standing assessment of the state of the various app stores has had it that the Android Market is not the place to do business if you have a paid app when compared with the Apple App Store. For example, some 80% or so of paid Android app have been downloaded fewer than 100 times. Android Community gives another example:

In the competitive gaming segment, only five titles in the Android Market have been downloaded more than 250,000 worldwide. In contrast, ten iPhone games in the App Store were downloaded in excess of 250,000 times in the US in the past two months alone.

There are various reasons why this is the case, not the least of which is the almost slapdash approach Android took to paid apps when it first launched. Different apps were billed in different currencies, for example, and there was no real uniform method of payment. Rather customers used a hodge podge of credit cards, network billing and other means.

A unified payment system, as Apple has through its iTunes system, would go a long way to helping devs see their paid apps gain more traction on Android.


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