A lot is going on this week with our daily technology tools, and some of it is not going over well.
Google Reader has been updated with some changes, has been reviewed poorly, leading one to even call it an “epic tech fail.” The “like” button has been banished, and replacing it with the +1, a Google Plus option, is not everyone’s cup of tea. People like having a choice on how to share an article.
And Google’s not done yet. It also revamped theGmail program, boosting the inbox search capabilities and the density of the layout, so users can see more emails per page on a smartphone or tablet.
For anyone needing further proof of the global proliferation of mobile devices, a comprehensive survey conducted by research firm TNS in sixty countries offers more evidence. The worldwide study, along with in-depth research and case studies from OgilvyAction, found that in some mobile usage areas, such as banking and shopping, developing countries are pioneering new trends. Both companies highlighted their findings at an AMA/American Marketing Association New York chapter event on Tuesday.
Below are the key takeaways.
Mobile has transformed communications, business, and entertainment in developing countries. “There mobile is not just a way to phone one’s friends, it’s a new portal,” Charles White, SVP at TNS, noted. “In many emerging markets, consumers’ first access to voice, news, Internet, and music was through mobile devices,” he added. Even for basic tasks, research results showed higher usage overseas. Worldwide, 65 percent of personal electronic messages were sent via mobile compared to 37 percent in North America.
Yesterday at 1 p.m. tons of people were pumped, seated in front of their computers with a nice beverage, prepared to be wowed by the latest Apple announcement. Instead, there’s been a collective “meh” heard around the world.
According to CNET, while the new iPhone 4S has some great stuff under the hood, the rumors of a super phone had inflated people’s expectations for an iPhone 5. Now the question is, “Who will buy the souped up iPhone 4S?”
The world is going mobile, and so is marketing. While it seems technology is plowing ahead too fast for everyone to keep up with, Jeff Judge, CEO of Signal, says, reassuringly, that’s not true. Things are just getting better, which gives publicists and marketers a chance to experiment and launch campaigns with mobile components without feeling as though they’re being left behind.
“The experience will get stronger with faster networks and more processing power,” Judge told us. ”Apps will get more sophisticated. And people are going to take a more well-thought-out approach, tying things together across devices.”
So the first tip is to take a deep breath. We’re going to be here for a bit.
I don’t know how it is playing out in the Midwest, but we at the PRNewser San Francisco bureau are loving the story of the iPad bridesmaid. It may not be exactly what Apple founders Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak envisioned all those years ago, but their technology allowed bridesmaid Renee Armstrong to attend her friend Jamie’s wedding in Colorado from several states away – her smiling visage carried around in a white iPad.
Sure, it could have been done via laptop or Droid too, but would that have the same magic? Nah.
Just a couple of weeks ago, we wrote about a Nielsen study that found teens were turning away from TV in favor of lots and lots of texting.
Do Something, a national nonprofit that involves teens in causes, is capitalizing on that stat, contacting teens on their mobile devices as a regular part of its outreach. According to this recent story in The New York Times, the organization would like to enlist 3.8 million members by 2014, triple the number that helped with 50 or more of its campaigns in 2010. And mobile outreach will be key to reaching that goal.
We spoke with Naomi Hirabayashi, Do Something’s director of marketing, about how to reach teens on their mobile devices. She offers three tips.