April 16, 2012
New data from Nielsen shows that half (49.7%) of U.S. mobile subscribers have converted to smartphones, a 38% increase over February 2011, when only 36% of mobile subscribers used smartphones.
Nielsen’s research also shows that Android remains the leading cell phone platform with 48% of the U.S. smartphone market, followed by 32.1% who use an Apple iPhone, and 11.6% who remain Blackberry owners.
Up until last week, I was among the diehard Blackberry users, but I’ve purchased an iPhone and will never look back.
As a further indication of the imminent demise of Blackberry, their stock has plummeted.
Among consumers who acquired their smartphone within the last three months, 48% surveyed said they chose an Android and 43% bought an iPhone.
Not only was Blackberry absent, so was any mention of Windows phones.
In the now two-horse race, the rising frustration by developers and users of the Android platform indicates their market lead over Apple is far from assured. From a safety perspective, choosing Apple and Apple apps is the best bet.
December 21, 2011
Tech items are wish-list toppers again this year, and if you’re among the millions planning on giving devices, don’t forget to include the safety, privacy and security tools and education that are needed to ensure the recipient is protected. This festive tip sheet from McAfee helps identify areas to think about.
November 14, 2011
Think you know how and when your college students are using their phones? This infographic from Hackcollege.com might make you think again, my suspicion is that high schoolers’ aren’t far behind.
If you’re student’s grades aren’t what they should be, this data may give you a few pointers for discussion. It’s hard to learn when texting in class yet 25% say they text in every single class period, and 88% say they do so regularly.
25% say they’ve been involved in sexting, but the healthier viewpoint is that 75% say they have not sent or received sext messages. Perhaps a bigger a red flag that the study found 50% of respondents say they check their significant other’s text history, indicating some fairly unhealthy relationships.
September 12, 2011
Over half (53%) of smartphone users say they are unaware that there is security software available for smartphones according to research by security company BullGuard, a shocking data point when mobile malware is skyrocketing.
In just the first six months of 2011, malware aimed at the most vulnerable platform, Android, has grown by 400% according to BullGuard, but that isn’t to say that Symbian, Apple or Windows Mobile users are safe.
The company has just released a new infographic titled Mobile Malware: – The Growing Threat of Smartphone Hackers & What You Need to Know’ that gives a great overview of the landscape of mobile malware, the lack of awareness about mobile threats among consumers, and what to expect for the second half of this year and into 2012 (the news isn’t great).
By the time you’ve finished scanning through the infographic, you may just be persuaded to install the mobile security software smartphones now desperately need.
March 8, 2011
Instead of upping the minutes on his cell phone plan when he ran low, “Chris” just switched to using his mobile Skype app. When his minutes are used up for the month he seamlessly switches to using Skype when calling, and when others call him he doesn’t answer, just calls them back on Skype.
Skype isn’t the only method of circumventing mobile carrier costs. New messaging applications GroupMe and Beluga (just bought by Facebook) are providing consumers’ ways to avoid text messaging fees by using mobile applications instead.
While these apps are only available to smartphone users, The comScore 2010 Mobile Year in Review report found that smartphones accounted for 27% of mobile subscribers in the U.S. in December 2010 – a 10% increase over 2009.
The ability to place apps on phones has given internet companies the chance to directly compete with the carriers. In a quote given for The Washington Post article Free messaging apps threaten wireless carriers’ cash cow Craig Moffett, an analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein research said “Facebook is, at its core, a communications company. The move to acquire Beluga makes this explicit. Beluga puts Facebook squarely into competition with carriers for the first time.”
This competition is giving users real choices in how they communicate, but analysts suspect that carriers will respond by forcing the combination text message plans with data packages to eliminate the cannibalization by competitors.
In the meantime, these apps represent real savings to cash strapped consumers.