It might take you a week or so to see it, but Twitter is rolling out a new version of their mobile site made specifically for the iPad. This updated format offers the same multiple-column styling as found on the regular site and is based on the existing HTML 5 mobile sites used by the iPhone and Android devices, but advertises being optimized for touch gestures.
This news will be exciting for those who prefer to use web apps from a browser window instead of launching a native app on their device. While many of you may question this preference, there are potential advantages especially when you may share an iPad with other family members and you’d like to keep your account private. In addition, web apps offer a centralized delivery system that allows for quick updates, feature adds and bug fixes. It may also give them a playground for testing new ideas before implementing them into their native apps.
Twitter is just the latest in a series of high profile organizations making the move to HTML 5. Last week, Kobo announced that they were also developing an HTML 5 web application (albeit with a different motivation), not to mention Adobe’s announcement that the preview of their new HTML 5 development tool, Edge, is available to try. Still on the horizon is Project Spartan, Facebook’s entry into the HTML 5 arena that has the potential to take the mobile world by storm with a social networking and gaming platform that circumvents the need for installation of any native apps.
This ability to deliver a quality user experience without developing a native app has to be making Apple at least a little concerned as it could eliminate a considerable revenue stream if companies can isolate users and their purchases away from the App Store. But I digress…
I think there is something rather zen about tweeting out news about Twitter itself.
HTML 5 is a new standard in web development, giving developers the tools they need to deliver fully interactive and multimedia rich content to their site visitors without the use of add-ons and proprietary plug-ins such as Flash.
» Related posts:
- YouTube Mobile Site Updated to Fully Support iPad
- Pandora Gives Nod to iPad, Chooses HTML 5 Over Flash
- Twitter Integration in iOS 5!
Categories: iPad Latest News Tags: android, bug fixes, delivery system, development tool, facebook, gaming platform, gestures, HTML, Improves, Ipad, iphone, Mobile, mobile world, native app, profile organizations, quality user, revenue stream, rich content, Site, social networking, spartan, twitter, Updates, user experience, web apps
Opinions and commentary are flying freely now that Apple has announced the iCloud. My belief is that the mistake is in comparing this service to the Amazon Cloud Player and the Google Music service. While the iCloud may be Apple’s entry against those competitors, the comparison isn’t, if you’ll pardon the pun, apples to apples.
Let’s start with a simple assumption. Apple isn’t trying to win over Android or RIM users with iCloud. Apple is trying to win over Apple users. The second we start to accept this reality, we can really start evaluating whether the iCloud is a quality product.
There is no question that cloud storage, in whatever form, makes sense. Centrally located music, photos, apps, calendars, documents available across all of your wireless devices makes sense. If you have to use two services to get all these features, you automatically lose some of the charm. I can live without a web-based equalizer, but I want seamless integration and support for every type of data I may want to share –not just my media. iCloud gives me this.
John Gruber hit it home when he said, that “Music storage is a feature of iCloud; iCloud is not a music service.” If device market-share means anything, his suggestion that iCloud is essentially the next version of iTunes might actually be a positive thing rather than the limitation it sounds like.
With no native apps available to bring the Amazon Cloud Player or Google Music services to iOS devices, it makes sense that their users will turn to iTunes. Sure, there is web access to stream music through a browser using the competition but that is hardly an ideal option. For an iPhone, iPod or iPad that is a work-around.
It’s true that iCloud requires you to use iTunes to upload your music. It’s also true that iTunes is going PC Free, so why is this a problem? Like iTunes or not, it’s more stable than most web apps and it’s well established. Most complaints, such as making it easier to download previously purchased content are being addressed.
If you buy your music from iTunes, it will be available in your iCloud with no additional work or cost. If you want to store your entire music collection, you can do so for a $25 a year fee. For this fee, iTunes will scan your collection and hook you up with the content already in the iTunes library. This saves you a lot of uploading and minimizing your need for large amounts of storage. If your song isn’t available, not a problem, you can add it.
Unlike Amazon and Google, a portion of this fee is filtered back to the music industry. This has been met with a lot of criticism and suggestion that this legitimizes piracy when in actuality it seeks to reimburse the industry for monies being lost because of it.
There are also criticisms that investing in a closed system, by paying Apple to host your music means users will lose control over their media. But a more objective look at this commentary would tell you that it wouldn’t matter where users uploaded their songs, this is a possibility. Apple isn’t forcing anybody to delete their local copies of things.
For other content beyond music, no syncing is required. Add an appointment to your calendar, a photo to your album or a new contact and it’s available on all of your devices with no additional effort on your part. And as Jobs says “It just works.” No need to be a skeptic on this either, this type of syncing has been available with MobileMe for quite some time now.
Now with all of that said, once the iCloud and iTunes Match are fully launched we will know more about performance and whether the features deliver as advertised, until then we’ll wait right here on the edges of our seats.
» Related posts:
- iCloud is Finally Here With Lots of Bells and Whistles!
- Details Emerge About Apple’s iCloud Service
- Apple Puts Ducks in a Row for iCloud
Categories: iPad Latest News Tags: amazon, android, apple users, apples to apples, equalizer, google, Head, iCloud, Ipad, iphone, itunes, john gruber, music photos, music service, music services, music storage, native apps, putting, quality product, seamless integration, stream music, web access, web apps
Looks like HTML5 caught Microsoft’s full attention this past week. The company announced this week that they will be shifting away from Silverlight and focus on HTML5.
Microsoft’s Server president, Bob Muglia, confirmed that the company will be focusing their web efforts/support on HTML5. “HTML is the only true cross platform solution for everything, including the iOS platform,” he said.
The first hint came this week, at Microsoft’s PDC event, when the company showed Internet Explorer 9 primarily running HTML5 demos.
In case you were not familiar, Silverlight is a web application framework that integrates multimedia, graphics, animation and interactivity into a single runtime environment. In other words, it was released as a video streaming plug-in with interactive features. Some of the Silverlight features are similar to those in Adobe Flash.
Microsoft still mentioned that Silverlight would run on Macs and Linux systems, but HTML5 seems to be the best way to support the iPhone and iPad. In addition, cross-platform efforts will rely on the more universal HTML5 standard.
This decision could be interpreted as a blow to Adobe. Adobe has been stressing that Flash is the ideal technology for a cross-platform approach in the web. We already know Apple’s position on HTML5. We still expect Microsoft to support Adobe in the Windows Mobile 7 platform, but by switching focus to HTML5 for web apps, Microsoft emphasizes what Apple has been saying about the HTML5 open standard. We’ve also heard Google and HP advocating their support for HTML5 as well.
Will this move by Microsoft entice more websites to move towards HTML5? Will more companies embrace the HTML5 standard as a cross-platform solution for web apps? It seems that more companies are moving that way.
» Related posts:
- Facebook Videos Go HTML5?
- Adobe AIR 2.5 Targets the iPad/iPhone, TVs and Other Tablets
- No Flash Support for the iPad – Ever!
Categories: iPad Latest News Tags: adobe adobe, Apple, bob muglia, cross platform, flash support, Focus, Follows, google, graphics animation, HTML5, interactive features, internet explorer, Ipad, iphone, linux systems, microsoft, multimedia graphics, pdc, platform approach, platform solution, runtime environment, silverlight, switches, towards, web application framework, web apps, web efforts
Today, Microsoft launched what they call Office 365, which is a service that combines Microsoft Office (Microsoft Office 2010), SharePoint Online, Exchange Online and Lync Online with the cloud.
This announcement comes after Google has been pushing Google Docs as an alternative to Microsoft Office for business customers. In addition, Google has been planning to add new mobile features such as co-editing files on the iPad.
When you think about the productivity apps segment on the App Store, Microsoft Office and Google Docs could be considered as the competition against Apple’s Keynote, Pages and Numbers apps. There are millions of iPad users out there, and some have been looking for additional office productivity apps.
With this announcement, Microsoft claims their support to business users by giving them access to Office on their iPads, iPhones, and other mobile devices. But, is it really true Microsoft Office support? The Office 365 subscription service integrates cloud-based syncing, collaboration and accessibility to businesses and organizations worldwide. But, the caveat for iOS users is that mobile access will be provided using a Web browser and Microsoft’s Office Web Apps.
Of course, this is not exactly a Microsoft native iPad app, but it’s better than what’s available from Microsoft today. This is also a similar model to Google Docs, which allows you to co-edit files simultaneously with co-workers around the world directly from your iPad.
Microsoft has announced there will be two editions of Office 365. Office 365 for Small Businesses, which is designed for organizations of 1 to 25 people. The package includes Office Web Apps, email sync, Lync and more. It will cost $6 per user per month.
The other version is called Office 365 for Enterprises. This one can be customized based on your company’s needs, and it also offers Office Pro Plus (via subscription), internal social networking tools, voicemail in the inbox, and more. It will set you back anywhere from $2 to $27 per user per month (depending on selected features).
It seems that Google Docs and the recent success of cloud apps like Box.net and Dropbox has made Microsoft aware of the rising demand for productivity apps in the cloud. Several companies have slowly started to collaborate and coordinate some of their daily activities online. What do you think?
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Categories: iPad Latest News Tags: business customers, business users, caveat, Coming, google, google docs, Ipad, iphones, microsoft, microsoft office support, mobile access, mobile devices, mobile features, networking tools, Office, office microsoft, office productivity, office web, productivity apps, sharepoint, social networking, Sort, subscription service, web apps