The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Miles Davis's In A Silent Way. We wanted mellow here, we certainly got it, might have to switch over to his A Tribute to Jack Johnson if we find the pace of work getting a bit lethargic.
There's a Olympic and World Cup focused iPhone App called "'iCheer - Country," which hit
the #3 spot of the top paid Apps in the Sports category on iTunes.
The purpose of the App is to allow fans to cheer for their country "whether they are at an Olympic event, a World Cup event like the FIFA World Cup, or just at a local pub cheering for their country." At home you're evidently on your own.
"Have you ever been to a game and forgot your jersey, or heaven forbid your face paint?" the vendor's site asks, hopefully rhetorically. "Not to worry, you always have your phone" Nobody'd ever forget that! "Use 'iCheer!' to cheer on your countries athletes or team!"
Okay. Sounds good. How?
Well, for starters, the app's creators say it has "flags for 106 countries. At the moment this is to support the countries participating in Vancouver and the World Cup in South Africa. More flags to come in later versions."
So, you punch up your country's flag on your iPhone and wave it around the pub. That's it? No, it also has "cheering sounds," since obviously those will be in short supply at a pub or game. "A bunch of great sounds to make some noise with! Save your voice and use 'iCheer!' to make all the noise you need. All you need to do is pick a favorite sound, crank it up and shake it! From whistles to cow bells to car horns. Everything you need to make some serious noise!"
We'd need to ask everybody else to be quiet so they could hear it, but leather-lunged pub rowdies wouldn't have a problem with that, we're sure.
T-Systems, the business-to-business Information and Communications Technologies unit of Deutsche Telekom, has announced
cloud computing usage in fifty percent of the SAP systems it supports for its customers, according to T-Systems officials:
"That approach puts the number of SAP Application Performance Standard operated in T-Systems data centers and provided as required via secure data connections at more than five million."
Dynamic Services from TSystems "makes ICT available like power from a socket," says David Andrews, vice president, ICT Operations at T-Systems in North America. "Customers pay for what they actually use, which reduces their costs by up to 30 percent." He called it "an argument that is turning the heads of increasing numbers of businesses."
According to Andrews, smaller companies were the first to benefit from T-Systems' Dynamic Services, but increasingly, corporate customers are adopting the service, including parent company Deutsche Telekom, Philips, Shell and Linde, a gases and engineering company.
Evidently, according to T-Systems officials, "these companies no longer operate their SAP systems independently but, instead, call on storage capacity, bandwidth, processing power or application capacities on demand from T-Systems' data centers."
"The special aspect of this model," they explain, "is that, by linking together servers in large pools, T-Systems can reach 80 percent usage." This mean that they need "significantly less hardware for the same performance and thus less power than for dedicated hosting models, which require every customer to have independent computers and storage capacities."
T-Systems, a hoster of SAP applications, has over 3.4 million named users around the world using on its systems for more than 570 corporate customers with more than 3,000 SAP installations and nearly 13 million SAPS.
A global survey of 15,000 consumers across 15 countries highlights
a "huge demand" for smart, personalized mobile Internet services.
Well, as opposed to stupid undifferentiated mobile Internet services we can see that, yes. We'd agree. "However, mobile carriers are risking their place in the mobile value chain by not responding to these demands quickly enough," finds a survey undertaken by Nielsen Research and commissioned by Tellabs.
Survey respondents suggest that over the next six months, media organizations such as the BBC, application developers such as Facebook and service providers such as Google "will be viewed as the most appropriate providers instead of mobile carriers."
The survey, Tellabs officials say, "reveals a strong user demand for a smart, personalized mobile Internet experience. Almost two-thirds of users -- 63 percent -- say they would use these services 'tailored to personal preferences, location, time of day and social setting ' within the next six months."
That sounds like high demand, and yes, friends, high demand's a good thing in this industry. But the research delivered "a stern warning to carriers," survey officials say: "In 11 out of 14 areas, users expect a range of third-party providers to deliver new services such as music, mobile e-mail and location-based services within six months. In contrast, mobile carriers were only deemed 'most appropriate' to provide basic voice, SMS and MMS services."
And users know that today, carriers provide these new services in eight out of 11 areas. The survey also shows that globally, users' trust in carriers is high, second only to banks.
"Clearly consumers are clamoring for smart, personalized mobile Internet services. But consumers have brought expectations from the fixed-line Internet to the mobile Internet," notes Rob Pullen, chief executive officer and president of Tellabs. "If carriers want to stay in the game and avoid becoming 'dumb pipes,' they need to use the valuable assets they already have, such as location-awareness, and to make networks smarter for personalization. They need to act now -- and act fast."
According to the research, users now more readily identify with third-party brands such as Google than with their mobile carriers, survey officials say, adding that "it also shows that carriers have an opportunity to make the most of today's positive position. By making networks smarter to deliver new, personalized mobile Internet services, carriers can build powerful relationships with users."
Google's announcement that it is launching a fibre to the home trial "should not be viewed
as a move by the Internet giant to become a major transport player in the US ultra-high-speed broadband market - at least not for the foreseeable future."
That's according to Rupert Wood, Principal Analyst at consultancy and research firm Analysys Mason. Wood thinks the move shows that Google is determined to influence US telecoms policy by showing how user and service provider behaviour could change under radically different conditions from those that currently prevail in the USA, and at the same time to understand how it can monetize those changes.
"Google has dabbled in access before. Its municipal Wi-Fi in Mountain View, California, has been a flop, and its joint bid with EarthLink to provide a city-wide wireless access network in San Francisco didn't work out. The location of these FTTH networks (serving anything between 50 000 and 500 000 households, according to Google) has not yet been decided. We expect Google will want to experiment with a variety of predominantly urban areas," Wood said.
There are two "key respects" in which Google will be offering something new with these trials, Wood says:
The 1Gbit/s symmetrical access "is a step change from what telcos and cablecos currently offer. It is 20 times faster than Verizon's FiOS service, for example." And "it will provide a fully open access model to service providers, the opposite of the model used by US cable and major telcos."
Naturally there is more than a little politicking and PR in the announcement and the trials, as Wood notes: "Google has long wanted a more open access approach from the incumbent players in the broadband market. And much remains unclear: how much end-user and service provider access is likely to cost, Google's retail role and the extent to which the networks will be co-funded with interested parties (such as communities, municipalities, real estate owners and service providers).
Should be interesting.