Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Android gobbling up market share

Here's an abosolutely staggering chart based on data from Gartner Research released in November 2010.

The chart shows the year over year growth of the smartphone market, which nearly doubled (96%).  By itself, that is truly impressive.  But more astounding is the growth of Android market share, coming from 3% to 25% in just one year.

In a market that is doubling every year, Android was able to grow significantly faster than all other platforms.

Apple basically held it's own, growing at the same rate as the market (roughly double).  Of course the real tragities are the sub-market growth of RIM and MSFT.

With Android devices now covering the high-end, mid-tier and entry-level market segments, it's growth potential looks unstoppable.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Nov. 30 Deadline for Video, Twitter Contests

Have you submitted your video yet for our WiFiCalling contest? If not, you better hurry. The final deadline for submissions is TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 30! There are three chances to win a brand new Android smartphone, so the odds are in your favor.

If creativity is holding you back, just take a look at the fan videos posted on the site today - they may provide just the inspiration you are looking for.

And remember, you don't have to have a Wi-Fi Calling / UMA service to enter. Tell us how much you wish you had it. The contest is open worldwide.

If videos really aren't your thing, but you want some chance at winning a new Android smartphone, you can also enter our Twitter contest. Between now and November 30, simply tweet this message for a chance to win:
RT for a chance to win latest #Android Smartphone from @kinetowireless http://bit.ly/bZVUPA with our #wificallingcomp

Visit WiFiCalling.net for contest details and rules (there aren't many) and to submit your video.

Follow @kinetowireless on Twitter for more updates and winner announcements in December.  Good luck!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Battery Life - Keeps getting better

Engadget editor Chris Ziegler recently reviewed Motorola's new Defy.  In case you forgot, this is Motorola's new 'party phone', water resistant, scratch-proof screen, something about rolling around in the sand (watch the commercial...).  This is also the Oprah phone... the phone given to the audience members of Oprah's first show of her last season.

But I don't want to talk about all that.  The Defy comes with Wi-Fi Calling.  Some industry commentators continue to propagate the rumor that excessive Wi-Fi use drains a smartphone's battery.  That may be the case, unless that phone has Smart Wi-Fi technology.

In Chris' review, he actually credits Wi-Fi, and Wi-Fi Calling (aka Smart Wi-Fi), as the reason why the battery performance was "stellar."

"In our experience, the Defy seems to have stellar battery life, which is relatively hard to come by among Android phones. Not only we were able to consistently make it comfortably through an entire day on a charge, but we were surprised to find that after putting the phone away with about 75 percent charge, it was still on with 21 percent remaining two days later. Granted, it spent most of that time in WiFi calling range (which disables the cellular radio), but many smartphones give up the ghost from 100 percent charge in less time, so we were pleased to see that." 
Smart Wi-Fi... actually making Wi-Fi on Smartphones 'smarter'.

Orange UK launches LG Optimus with Signal Booster

Yesterday the LG Optimus appeared on the Orange UK website.  It's the first Android phone which supports Orange UK's "Signal Boost" feature which is based on UMA Technonology.

At press time, the phone was listed as having a talk time of 29.1 days... I'm sure that's supposed to be standby time, and I'm pretty sure it's not 29 days... but hey - there's no doubt that UMA powerful stuff.

The LG Optimus was released at T-Mobile US a couple weeks ago with the same UMA technology, albeit under the commercial name Wi-Fi Calling.

The Optimus is part of a new category of low-cost Android-powered smartphones.  The phone is free with a two year commitment at both Orange and T-Mobile.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Wi-Fi Calling Comes to T-Mobile Android

Today's the day...T-Mobile is now selling four phones with Wi-Fi Calling. Finally.

With today's big push is around '4G', it turns out that T-Mobile's two flagship 4G phones both support Wi-Fi Calling.

The MyTouch 4G comes with Wi-Fi Calling pre-loaded on the handset.

The G2, the other phone in the '4G' launch, gets Wi-Fi Calling added as an 'over the air' update occuring over the next week.

In addition, two of T-Mobile's entry level Android phones are available with Wi-Fi Calling.

The LG Optimus (free with 2 year contract) and the Motorola Defy ($99 with 2 year contract) are both available with Wi-Fi Calling.

Today's the day - taking Wi-Fi and Android to the next level.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Wi-Fi Playing a More Crucial Role in US Mobile Carrier Growth

…and femtocells don’t appear to be.

I was reading Roger Cheng’s latest piece covering AT&T’s use Wi-Fi. The company announced they supported 106.9 million Wi-Fi connections in Q2 2010. It’s certainly impressive.

But was struck me more was the utter lack of discussion about femtocells. Recall that just a year or two ago, AT&T’s femtocell launch was eagerly anticipated by the company, along with the mobile (and femtocell) industry.

Yet skip ahead, and AT&T continues to laud its use of Wi-Fi with nary a word on its femtocell deployment. It's like they have fallen to the side of the road.

Perhaps it’s reflected in a release the Femto Forum put out the other day. The Forum announced that there were “more femtocells deployed that macrocells” in the US.

At first blush, that sound like good news… until the details come out.

According to the announcement, there are ‘conservatively’ 350,000 femtocells deployed by Sprint, Verizon and AT&T in the US, versus 256,000 macro cells. But with the ‘big three’ serving about 230 million subscribers, 350k femtocells deployed isn’t very impressive.

Even converting to households, it isn’t much. I found another study which says 75.8m homes in the US have broadband, a pre-requisite for a femtocell, so we're at 0.4% penetration. (versus 62% for Wi-Fi).

I know, femtocells are just getting started, and there’s plenty of room for growth. But at the end of the day, ATT is touting it’s Wi-Fi connection numbers, not it’s femtocell deployments.