Web & Programming

Tablets Update: The Kindle Fire, iPad, and an Infographic

With Amazon's announcement of its new Kindle Fire on Wednesday, the tablet marketplace received a healthy surge of excitement. After all, the original Kindle is projected by analysts to sell nearly 18 billion units this year and grow to a staggering 26 million units next year—numbers that better the market-leading iPad.

Some other highlights from the tablet universe:

While some would argue that the Kindle Fire isn't a comparable competitor to iPad and Android tablets, this is still a great opportunity to take a look at the current marketplace. Consumer website Sortable put together a great overview of the tablet space and how several competitors have sprung up in an attempt to dethrone the iPad, in a great visual. To view the full infographic, please visit Sortable's website here.


Pricing Your Mobile Apps: A Distimo Presentation

Last week, mobile app discovery platform appsfire announced the app industry hit a significant milestone. They said that if you took all the apps ever developed on iOS and Android, you'd have 1 million mobile apps combined, according to their appGenome™.

With this huge population of mobile developers, we found an interesting presentation from Distimo, a leading app store analytics company, presented at the recent Verizon Developer Community Conference in Las Vegas. The presentation, titled "Pricing for success: app industry trends and best practices," covered the latest trends in application pricing and monetization and offered advice on how developers should respond to these trends.


Do you agree with their app pricing strategy? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below or head over and post on our Facebook wall.


comScore: Android Surges Past iOS in Europe Too

In our most recent update on smartphones in the U.S., Android continued to grow its lead on Apple's iOS mobile oeprating system, and from today's findings, it looks like Android is the one to watch in Europe too. comScore released their mobile OS numbers for Europe today, and Android passed iOS to become the second-most popular mobile OS in the five leading European markets (France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom). While longtime leader Symbian still leads by 14%, that's down 16 points from this time last year, and if trends hold up, it only appears a matter of time before Google finds themselves knocking on the door and Android programmers continue to reap the benefits.

According to comScore's data:

In the three month average period ending in July 2011, 88.4 million mobile subscribers across the EU5 reported using smartphones, up 44 percent from the previous year. Google’s Android platform exhibited the fastest growth among smartphone platforms in this period, increasing its market share 16.2 percentage points to 22.3 percent.

On the tablet newsfront today, with their announcement of Windows 8 today, Microsoft revealed that their formerly PC-only operating system is designed to run on the next wave of tablets as well, promising a full day's uage on just one charge. With data showing that Windows Phone 7 has been slow to make an impact in the tablet space, it will be interesting to see if Windows 8 can chip into the iOS and Android Honeycomb lead.

comScore: Nearly 70% of Smartphones Run Android or iOS

In a recent article on the Elance Blog, it was suggested that Google and Apple were poised to make the smartphone OS wars essentially a two-horse race, and numbers just released by comScore support that prediction, even before Google's acquisition of Motorola Mobility and HP's bailout of webOS.

According to their July data, Android and iOS together now account for nearly 70 percent of smartphone operating systems in the United States, with Android phones gaining 5.4% in market share since April (nearly 42 percent overall). In second place, Apple's operating system gained a percentage point, up to 27% total.

Their combined growth continues to be bad news for the competition, as one-time leader Blackberry took the biggest hit, down 4% since April to just under 22% overall. Microsoft slipped down a percentage point to 5.7% of U.S. smartphone subscribers, and Symbian only has a scant 1.9 percent share in the U.S.—but with the impending release of Windows Phone 7 Mango update, Microsoft (with new partner Nokia) may end up being a new factor in these smartphone wars.

Mobile Moves: webOS Passes Prematurely; Android and iOS Poised to Thrive

The mobile industry was turned upside down last week with two huge announcements—one regarding Google's new power play, and the other signaling the demise of a once-promising mobile OS competitor. Septillion Developers, mobile developers (webOS Green Belt) and technology writers, talk about what it means for each of the major players.

It’s been an eventful last week for the mobile developer fraternity. First, Google scooped up Motorola Mobility in a rather unprecedented move. Then, HP dropped a bomb by announcing that it’s pulling the plug on the TouchPad tablet merely 30 days after it was released. And that’s not all—HP said it plans to discontinue webOS as a platform as well as kill webOS-enabled smartphones such as the recently launched Pre3.

As both an Android and webOS developer, I must admit that both announcements took me by surprise. After the gigantic failure of Nexus One, I was convinced that Google wouldn’t build a smartphone ever again. I was wrong; Google went one step ahead and gobbled up a company which built the ‘Droid’ family of smartphones – Android’s longest serving ambassador till date.

As for HP dropping TouchPad and webOS—well, almost nobody saw it coming. As for webOS, I was thrilled to know that HP nominated me as a webOS Green Belt two weeks back; obviously they gave me no indication of what’s coming next.

Web & Programming Resources Roundup

With web technology in a constantly evolving state, it can be a challenge to keep your skills sharp and relevant given all the new features and functions that appear with each version release, update or development. With that in mind, we've assembled a list of hand-picked tutorials from around the web to help you stay on top of things and give you more tips of the trade to add to your skill toolbox.

Here, we've collected a number of resources on a variety of subjects covering most of the top web & programming skills on Elance, according to our recent Online Employment Report. Regardless of whether you’re a brand new developer, a veteran coder, or just someone looking to learn more about these web development skills, there's bound to be something useful for you here.




Joomla! 1.6 and Drupal 7.0: Comparing the Two CMS

What are your core needs in a content management system? Joomla! and Drupal are two of the leading CMS platforms due to their robust features and potential for customization. Elancer Mayank Saxena, an experienced IT writer, breaks down what to expect with recent, stable versions of both CMS platforms.

Content management systems have been at the core of the Web 2.0 boom. With the popularity of the internet as a medium for communication, user behavior and interactivity patterns have changed. This requires developers and webmasters to have access to much more advanced features and greater control over the content management systems in a simplified fashion. Thus, the need for a more advanced CMS emerges. Both Drupal and Joomla!, two of the leading CMS options available, have responded to this need proactively by upgrading their platforms to feature advanced application intelligence.

Both the platforms released their latest versions in January 2011. Powered with advanced features, Joomla 1.6 and Drupal 7.0 will likely have advocates of competing platforms reconsidering their options. This article discusses some of the most compelling features of Joomla 1.6 and Drupal 7.0 so that you can make an informed decision before zeroing on a CMS.

What’s New in Joomla 1.6 and Drupal 7.0
Joomla 1.6 is loaded with a brand new access control interface. Section and category managers have been integrated to provide categorization to unlimited depth. Joomla! has enhanced support to extensions with a one-click update feature. Semantic XHTML layout is another powerful feature to look for in the latest version.

Figure 1: Joomla 1.6 Admin Control Interface

Nielsen Update: Android Tops Mobile OS, Apple Top Manufacturer

According to a reported released today by Nielsen, Google’s Android operating system (OS) now claims the largest piece of the U.S. consumer smartphone market with 39 percent. Apple’s iOS is in second place with 28 percent, while RIM's Blackberry OS drops down to 20 percent.

Looking at Nielsen's graph below, we see that Apple is able to hold onto the top manufacturing position because they, along with RIM, are the exclusive manufacturers for their operating systems. Android, on the other hand, is featured on hardware from several companies.

Android's continued surge in popularity even exceeds previous projections. In our last Nielsen update, we mentioned Nielsen's monthly surveys of U.S. mobile consumers, which showed that there had been an increasingly shifting change in the popularity of mobile operating systems. 31 percent of consumers who planned to get a new smartphone said Google's Android was their preferred OS, while Apple iOS had slipped slightly to 30 percent. One-time leader RIM Blackberry OS had only 11 percent interest, while 20 percent were undecided--though it looks like a lot of them chose Android!

Elance Mobile News Roundup

What's been going on in the world of mobile in the past few weeks? We've pulled together some of the most noteworthy news in the land of mobile apps, smartphones and tablets, and they all have one thing in common—they show that this is as good a time as ever for elancers with skills in mobile application development, web, and platform.

comScore: Android OS Strengthens Top Position Among US Mobile Phones

  • 76.8 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones during the three months ending in May 2011, up 11 percent from the preceding three month period.
  • Google Android ranked as the top operating system with 38.1 percent of U.S. smartphone subscribers, up 5.1 percentage points. Apple iOS strengthened its #2 position with 26.6 percent of the smartphone market, up 1.4 percentage points. RIM Blackberry OS ranked third with 24.7 percent share, followed by Microsoft Windows Phone 7 (5.8 percent) and Palm/HP webOS (2.4 percent).

Vator Partners with Windows Phone 7 To Help Showcase Your Apps

You’ve just finished developing your latest mobile app, and you dream of shooting up the app charts and becoming an overnight sensation like so many others before you. The mobile apps ecosystem continues to grow and evolve, but as a developer, how are you able to distinguish your newest creation among countless others that are popping up every day?

Our friends at Vator, the professional network for entrepreneurs, have teamed up with Microsoft Windows Phone 7 to give you the opportunity to showcase your next great mobile application and get featured in your very own article and video interview. Vator’s “Special App of the Day” competition is designed to highlight new Windows Phone 7 apps that could potentially become the next mobile sensation, and it could be you!

One of the great things about this competition (along with it being free and the opportunity to receive a $99 rebate if you join the Windows Phone 7 Developer Program) is that there isn’t only one grand prize winner. Rather, during the entire two months of eligibility, VatorNews and other editors will be selecting a number of worthy apps to feature. In addition to being profiled, winners will also earn two tickets and one demo table to any Vator Splash event this year, where successful tech entrepreneurs gather to talk shop alongside startups and other entrepreneurs.

This is a great opportunity for not only existing Windows Phone 7 developers to highlight their work, but also a chance for new talented app developers on Elance to join the WP7 Developer Program to see what they’re capable of. 

For more details or to sign up for the competition, please visit Vator.tv Special App of the Day and get your Windows Phone 7 app noticed!


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