Monday, January 20th, 2014

Now King have trademarked ‘Candy’ in respect to gaming titles, can we expect freemium licensing? #

The good news is that they will likely licence it out, but you can only use it to compile five games every six hours, and if you want to distribute it in the app stores around the mobile world you’ll need to purchase a one-time ‘upload’ super candy.

Sunday, January 19th, 2014

The difference between effective eBook pricing in the UK and the US #

Some interesting numbers that show the different pricing needed for eBooks in the US market and the UK market by (Techcrunch). First of all, in the US:

See how the $9-10 range shows a spike of revenue? I suggest this validates the industry viewpoint that there is a good market for books priced around $10… The most revenue was earned between in the $9-10 price range.

And in the UK? Well we’re looking for much better value.

By far, the largest number of units sold is £1 or less (mostly 99p). And then it tails off as the price rises. There are hardly any sales over £5 (approx $7.50)… The most revenue was earned in the ‘under £1‘ price range.

The question now is why?

Saturday, January 18th, 2014

The world of PR is already messing up Jelly #

Mobile start-up Jelly (a sort of post an image and ask a question about it and hope someone in your social circle (a) knows the answer (b) is on Jelly and (c) will happily post the answer) is just over a week old. Showing just how fast the internet works, the social media teams from the big brands are already “leveraging their real-time social virility and trading friendship capital for marketing messages.” Over to David Meyer:

The thing launched like three seconds ago and already I’m getting notifications for “questions” from mobile phone companies, soft drink firms and so on. Now, I’m not naïve. I know that a free app is going to come with an element of advertising. I get it – the revenue will come from brand partnerships or whatever. I think “native” (a.k.a deceptive) advertising sucks, but if it’s at least a bit obvious, it’s not the end of the world. Yay for media literacy.

But for Pete’s sake, can’t you marketers let me get comfy first? Maybe let me poke around and see why this new platform is fun (a debatable point) before you start hitting me over the head with the brand hammer? Do you have to be in there from day one?

Friday, January 17th, 2014

The moment when a post about ‘audio not going viral’, goes viral #

An interesting article for two reasons on Digg about the viral nature of content and why audio doesn’t have the same viral velocity as an animated GIF or a flashy YouTube video:

“Audio never goes viral,” writes radio and podcast producer Nate DiMeo. “If you posted the most incredible story — literally, the most incredible story that has ever been told since people have had the ability to tell stories, it will never, ever get as many hits as a video of a cat with a moustache.”

It’s hardly a fair fight, audio vs. cat video, but it’s the one that’s fought on Facebook every day. DiMeo’s glum conclusion is an exaggeration of what Giaever reads as the moral of her own story: “People will watch a bad video more than [they will listen to] good audio,” she says.

Definitely worth a read if you have any connection to radio or podcasting. The other interesting reason is that this article is not Digg linking to an article, but a Digg ‘original’ article commissioned by the new owners, as TechCrunch points out:

The new Digg is more about marrying the concept of a trending post with the human touch that only comes from an editorial eye about what deserves consideration. That puts into a category where it could compete with other viral aggregators like BuzzFeed or Reddit, news aggregators like Techmeme, and also with services like Medium, which offers a sort of collaborative blogging platform where top stories and recommended content is also presented to end users.

Wednesday, January 15th, 2014

A/B Testing Booth Babes #

Delightful guest post by Spencer Chen (Head of Marketing at Frontback) on Techcrunch. Through circumstances he had two booths in different areas at an SAP show, so he decided to do some experiment to get some actual data.

My theory from years of being a part of trade show staffs is that the booth babes we hired were actually a drag on lead-gen. Up to that time, it was all empirical evidence based on being at shows where we had money to hire booth babes and events where we didn’t. I noticed that we had always done better without the booth babes but it was just silly to suggest that we did better because we didn’t have hot babes at the booth. I mean, I had a better chance of convincing my co-workers that the sky was purple.

But here was my chance to put it to the test. So for one booth I flew in professional booth babe talent, and for the other booth I had asked another local agency for a couple of show contractors that knew the local area and had established people skills. I actually had to stress a couple of times that I was not looking for contractors whose only attribute was “smokin’.”

How he went about it is a great read, but ‘m going to skip to the end (spoilers…)

I am not here to participate in the bigger social debate on whether exploiting women as booth babes is bad for all of us in the long run…or if it’s simply wrong. I just wanted to state that if you were so inclined to take up this debate, I can offer you a sound business reason to support your opinion:

Booth babes don’t convert.

Once more…

Booth babes don’t convert.

Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

Why did nobody tell me Spelunky is out on PS Vita? #

Actually I think I know why. They’ve all started playing it, it’s horribly addictive, and nobody can put it down long enough to tell anybody else that the dungeon crawler to end all dungeon crawlers is available to download.

Monday, January 13th, 2014

Reviewing the Jolla handset and Sailfish OS #

A few weeks after receiving Jolla’s first handset (called, er, the Jolla), I’ve posted an in-depth review of the Linux powered smartphone over on Forbes.

All of that said, the Jolla handset has me excited. I’ve been following the project for some time, I ordered my device in May 2013 as part of the first wave of orders, and I knew that when it was delivered to me in December I was not getting a finished product… just a Finnish product. The Sailfish OS at the core of Jolla’s vision is delivering a stable environment and handles the mid-range specs of the Jolla handset relatively well.  With another six months or so to iron out the bugs, improve battery life, and polish the user interface the core experience will be ready for the consumer market, as long as the first party apps are updated with the same attention to detail.

Jolla is not finished, but what is on offer now is going to be very appealing to the hackers of the smartphone world.

Sunday, January 12th, 2014

The Fantastic Shed Show heads for the silver screen #

Jon Ronson talks about his life with Frank Sidebottom in The Guardian.

He reminded me of George Bernard Shaw’s unreasonable man: “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.” Chris was the unreasonable man, except the world never did adapt to him and he never made any progress.

Like when Frank was asked to support the boy band Bros at Wembley. There were 50,000 people in the crowd. This was a huge stage for Frank – his biggest ever, by about 49,500 people. It was his chance to break through to the mainstream. But instead he chose to perform a series of terrible Bros cover versions for five minutes and was bottled off. The show’s promoter, Harvey Goldsmith, was glaring at him from the wings.

Frank sauntered over to him and said, “I’m thinking of putting on a gig at the Timperley Labour Club. Do you have any tips?”

Please on the life of LIttle Frank don;t let the Hollywood film ‘Frank’ get everything wrong….

Saturday, January 11th, 2014

The story of the Pebble that started an avalanche of smartwatches #

Smartwatchfans (or should that be Smartwatch Central to follow all the other sites?) takes a look back at the Pebble smartwatch in a ‘story so far…’ article:

Earlier attempts at making watches smarter, everything from the classic Casio calculator watch to the Sony Ericsson MBW series, didn’t do it for Migicovsky. They simply didn’t do enough. Inspired by pen computers like the Newton, Psion, and the Palm Pilot, and their eventual convergence with smartphones, Migicovsky felt there was a place for a device that was even more convenient.

He wanted something that could take on a subset of tasks and make them available to you at glance, on your wrist, while in a meeting or on a run. After early attempts to hack extra radios onto the iPhone 3G, Migicovsky, a Canadian, switched his focus to the (at the time) far more accessible BlackBerry platform…

Behind the scenes at Question Time #

Fleet Street Fox writes up her experiences as a first-time panellist on BBC’s Question TIme:

Since I ’came out’ [as a blogger] last year I’ve been asked to do a bit of telly stuff, and as it pays me money, gets me readers and makes sense I’ve had to get used to plonking myself in front of cameras instead of avoiding them like the plague.

I’m used to criticising from the sidelines where it’s safe, perhaps livetweeting on the #bbcqt hashtag, not rollicking a politician while sat next to them and they can answer back.

QT is different though – this is the grandaddy. The one everybody watches, right up to the Prime Minister. The one important people go on. And I’m just me, a pillock who blagged her way into a job as a journalist when she was 18 and has been winging it ever since.

The full riveting read (well, for some of us) is over on The Mirror.

Friday, January 10th, 2014

The five trends from CES 2014 #

Hotwire PR with 33Digital snag some easy PR with the top five trends talked about online from CES.

4K, wearables, smart gadgets, 3D printing, and Internet of Things

Thursday, January 9th, 2014

Of course tech journalists are cynical about tech journalism #

Ben Parr, formerly of Mashable:

Good journalists are cynics and skeptics by their very nature. This is essential to the DNA of great reporting. The press must remain skeptical of those in power and of those who wield power in order to keep power in check. Without it, you get China, the NSA and **CENSORED**. That’s why it doesn’t surprise me that tech journalists are cynical about themselves and their industry. But let me point out a couple of recent developments in the tech journo world…

I love the fact that in the list of new developments and solid signs, Parr points out the return of Valleywag. When something is big enough to satire, then it’s on the right track.

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

The new Yahoo Tech opens up the digital doors #

Or, as the rest of the tech world sees it ‘David Pogue vs Kara Swisher & Walt Mossberg‘.

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Small smartphones can be powerful, says Sony at CES #

Sony’s research with consumers around their smartphones uncovers an amazing fact:

…the consumer who’d prefer to have a smaller device doesn’t want fewer features.

The Xperia Z1 Compact is being touted as a Sony high end smartphone in a small package. I’m not sure I’d class a 4.3 inch screen as small, but for Android manufacturers this is a step in the right direction. Looking forward to reviewing this handset in the near future.

The Rush of Giant Monsters and Robots at the BAFTAs #

The expected outpourings of ‘wonderful, super, smashing, luvvie’ are there to see in the BAFTA nominations this year (‘Captain Phillips’, ’12 Years a Slave’, ‘Mandela’, ‘Philomena’, etc) but two nominations caught my eye and made me smile. Daniel Bruhl as Best Supporting Actor in ‘Rush’, and Best Visual Effects for ‘Pacific Rim’.

Both will likely be trounced by establishment films, but both should proudly slap ‘BAFTA Nominated’ on the CV’s. I’m cheering for both of them.