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SMW: iPhone Event Bears Legacy of Disruption

September 15, 2014 | by Andrew Berg | Comments

When you think about the number of times you've looked at the screen of your smartphone in the past few hours, whether iPhone or Android or Windows Phone, it's hard not to resort to hyperbole when talking about the original iPhone.

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Design Daily

Some Mobile Games Stay Fun So Much Longer Than Others

October 1, 2014 3:28 pm | by Ben Munson | Comments

At an average cost of less than a soda, mobile games are disposable. It’s not uncommon for a mobile game (particularly free ones) to get a good couple of weeks on a device before getting deleted. And those are the lucky ones. It’s the kind of culture that makes IPOs from the Candy Crush people look negligent.

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Control Over Your Data Usage? Think Again

September 30, 2014 10:21 am | by Andrew Berg | Comments

After nervously handing over an iPhone 5 to my 12-year old, I knew I was going to have to do something to monitor the amount of data he was using. I didn't want to completely ban him from using data, but I certainly wanted to mitigate the possibility of overages. 

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Album Releases and Mobile Events Don’t Mix

September 16, 2014 2:16 pm | by Ben Munson | Comments

How many more artists must cash in credibility to hitch their wagon to a smartphone star? How many more manufacturers must package inessential music with their hero phones? The answer remains unclear but until the practice stops, complaints about unauthorized downloads and privacy invasion will continue to steal some thunder from perfectly good smartphones.

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Data Plans with Less Than 1GB Should Be a Thing of the Past

July 23, 2014 10:54 am | by Ben Munson | Comments

Considering the push for gigabytes and the certain doom for networks that can’t keep up, plans measured in megabytes seem like an anomaly. Options with less than 1GB are, at best, starting to look hopelessly outdated. At worst, they look like a slightly less than straightforward cash grab.

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Verizon Breaks Taboo with Lucrative Location Play

July 21, 2014 4:49 pm | by Andrew Berg | Comments

Carriers have long been trying to figure out how best to make use of the massive amounts of data out various cellular-connected devices create. Until now, they haven't really done a good job of what many analysts refer to as digital gold.

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Amazon Fire Phone Different but Not in the Right Way

June 19, 2014 10:20 am | by Andrew Berg | Comments

Users of high-end smartphones are not going to buy the Fire Phone for a number of reasons but the limited access to Google Play is one big reason power users will stay away. Gesture control and 3D are not enough to sway the power user from an LG G3, an HTC One M8, or a Galaxy S5, all of which cost the same but offer full access to the Google Play store.

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Windows Phone Still Chanting, 'Developers, Developers, Developers!'

June 16, 2014 1:25 pm | by Editor | Comments

With its deep integration of Microsoft's Office software, Windows Phone really does have a chance to make it in the smartphone game, but it absolutely must get developers, both big and hyper-local, behind it and not in the half-hearted manner they are now. It might be argued that Steve Ballmer realized this better than anyone. 

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Amazon Should be the One Moving Its Event

June 10, 2014 10:53 am | by Ben Munson | Comments

If priorities were in the right place, though, it would be Amazon working around T-Mobile’s schedule. Amazon’s (probably) phone will show off some cool tricks but after the show, it’s still just another Android smartphone. Amazon is an interesting player with a strong ecosystem but it won’t become a major disruptor in the smartphone space on day one.

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The Tyranny of Apple’s New Headphone Scheme

June 6, 2014 11:03 am | by Andrew Berg | Comments

If the leak about the Lightning Connector headphones is true, and you're an iPhone user, get ready to eventually buy more expensive adaptors along with the additional Lightning Connector cords you've bought since the spec was switched from the 30-pin we'd all come to know and...well, know. 

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iOS’s Walled Garden is Cracking, for Better or for Worse

June 5, 2014 10:23 am | by Ben Munson | Comments

My developer friend said if Apple keeps this up, he was hopeful that by iOS 9, he won’t even have to jailbreak. If that feeling even partially resonates through the developer and jailbreaker community, then Apple’s made a huge step toward opening its doors to the outside world. But the inverse effect must be considered. If the hurdles for developers are shrinking, the learning curve for the common end-user might be getting steeper.

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A Note on WEA: When Technology Works

June 3, 2014 9:56 am | by Andrew Berg | Comments

WEA is one of those rare instances where a number of players - regulators, government, first responders, carriers - got a lot of moving parts to fit together and the results are truly impressive, to the extent that they could actually save lives. 

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Mozilla, Dropbox Appointments Stir Healthy Debate

April 14, 2014 11:03 am | by Andrew Berg | Comments

While I'm not sure that name-calling tactics are necessarily helpful, I am at least encouraged that the public is aware of what's happening in big technology and is active in implementing what appears to be a rough set of checks and balances within that realm.  

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A UV Exposure Sensor is a Killer Feature for Me

April 9, 2014 11:04 am | by Ben Munson | Comments

Given my medical scare, you can forgive me for being psyched about the talk of a possible UV exposure sensor in the rumored iWatch. For real, put that thing in any smartwatch, smartshirt, smartshoes, smartpants, I don’t care. I want it. This is the killer mHealth feature for me.

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The Fog of a Price War Is Real in AT&T's New Mobile Share Plans

April 4, 2014 4:35 pm | by Andrew Berg | Comments

AT&T's new Mobile Share plans are misleading in that they are basically a limited promotion on par with how cable companies offer you an introductory rate, which is then increased at a later date. I'll start out by saying AT&T's new 10GB Mobile Share plans are a good deal: four lines, 10GB of data at $160. 

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BlackBerry’s Split with T-Mobile Doesn’t Look Smart

April 2, 2014 10:55 am | by Ben Munson | Comments

April Fools’ Day is over, right? Technically, news of BlackBerry not renewing T-Mobile’s license to sell its phones came yesterday. But we checked and, it’s real. That means BlackBerry, a once-mighty handset maker that is now barely clinging to life, told the hottest U.S. carrier that it can’t sell BlackBerry devices anymore. This move seems counter-intuitive to say the least.

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