The Wall Street Journal
A key battlefield is emerging for suppliers of mobile chips—the low-end smartphone market in developing countries. Chip makers like Qualcomm Inc., Intel Corp. and Taiwan-based MediaTek Inc. are focusing on low-priced phones that typically cost less than $200, because the fast-growing market offers high volumes of sales. As a result, the companies are working with handset vendors in China and other emerging countries to increase their presence in the segment.
Qualcomm, the world’s dominant provider of wireless chips, has been working of late with Chinese electronics maker Lenovo Group Ltd., and the two last week introduced a couple smartphones that use dual-core Qualcomm chips typically reserved for pricier phones. While the devices from Qualcomm and Lenovo aren’t the first dual-core phones to hit the Chinese market, they are the first from Qualcomm to address the market’s low end.
Mobile Marketing News
Mozilla’s HTML5-based mobile operating system leaped ahead this week thanks to support from a handful of wireless carriers. For marketers, the news has the potential to bring more cost-conscious consumers into the smartphone market and unlock new opportunities. One of the main attractions of a mobile operating system such as Firefox that is built on HTML5 is that it enables the development of smartphones that function at nearly the same level as some of the high-end options currently in the market but at a much lower cost. Such lower-cost devices could be attractive to feature phone owners who are considering whether or not to upgrade.
Network World (US)
FRAMINGHAM – IT budgets are expected to increase an average of only 3 percent this year, down from 6 percent reported last year, according to CIO magazine’s latest Tech Poll of 200 IT leaders. The survey, conducted in April, showed that budget increases are in store for nearly half of CIOs, up from 32 percent roughly 9 months ago. Just one in five CIOs anticipate IT budget cuts. There is also a big shift underway in terms of where IT spending is being targeted. CIOs are increasing spending on outsourced IT services, including cloud, plus mobile/wireless and applications.
IDC Press Release
SAN MATEO, Calif.– Worldwide semiconductor revenues increased more than 3.7% year over year to $301 billion in 2011, according to the latest version of the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Semiconductor Applications Forecaster (SAF). The industry weathered the macroeconomic uncertainties in the U.S and Europe, the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, China’s slow down in the second half of the year, and floods in Thailand. Meanwhile, device applications, such as smartphones, media tablets and e-readers, automotive infotainment, notebook PCs, datacenter servers, and wireless and wired communication infrastructure drove robust consumption of semiconductors.
IDC’s SAF tracks more than 100 semiconductor companies. Over 40 of these companies experienced year-over-year revenue growth greater than 5%, while about the same number of companies saw their revenue decline by more than 5%.
As SNL so masterfully parodied, TV commercials for wireless carriers are usually a mess of vague technical jargon, meaningless graphs and annoying spokespeople. But who actually has the fastest wireless network?
The editors at PCWorld decided to find out. They ventured to multiple spots in 13 different cities to test various carriers’ 3G and 4G wireless speeds.
(MORE: Ask Techland: What’s the Deal with 4G?)
The big winner in the 4G category: AT&T, with an average download speed of 9.12 Mbps, ahead of Verizon’s 7.35-Mbps average. If you’re a content creator — i.e., if you are constantly uploading Instagram photos — you might want to go with Verizon, who had the highest average 4G upload speed of 5.86 Mbps.
Verizon Wireless is disputing the claims in PC World’s study, saying in a statement their 4G service has received high marks for quality.
“The vast majority of highly regarded third-party studies and tests consistently place Verizon Wireless 4GLTE network and data services at the head of the pack in terms of speed, quality and reliability,” says Verizon in their statement. The carrier says its 4G service will expand to over 400 markets by the end of the year. “By next year, our 4G LTE network will cover virtually the entire U.S., rendering the overstated 4G vs. 3G coverage discussion moot.”
Are airports equipped for the crunch of tech-savvy holiday travelers? Not really, according to a report from the folks at PCWorld, who say that only a fraction of the country’s airports are ready for takeoff when it comes to meeting passengers’ electronic needs.
“Overall, I would give the top 40 airports a C grade for accommodating tech-savvy travelers,” senior editor Mark Sullivan said. “The airports, together, offer an average of 5.5 outlets per gate. When you consider that most people are now carrying devices that need wireless service and battery charge-up, this number is woefully low.”
FRAMINGHAM, Mass. — International Data Corporation (IDC) has published a new vendor and market analysis profiling the leading providers in the worldwide enterprise wireless local area network (WLAN) market. The IDC MarketScape report utilizes a rigorous scoring methodology that produces a definitive assessment of each vendor’s current market capabilities and strategies for competing in the future. IDC placed two vendors — Cisco and Aruba — in the “Leaders” category for 2011/2012, with several others, including HP Networking and Motorola Solutions being recognized as “Major Players.”