Friday, 26 October 2012

Facebook's Mobile ads cranking $1.1B a year!

Facebook's efforts to make money from mobile are young -- but the payoff already looks big.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
(Credit: James Martin/CNET)
's stock is on a tear today, poised to post its biggest one day gain since it went public in May. This comes a day after the company's strong third-quarter earnings report and, perhaps more importantly, its upbeat call with analysts in which CEO said flat out, "I want to dispel this myth that can't make money on mobile."

While Zuckerberg and his top execs stressed that is in the early days on this front -- it only started trying to make money from mobile in March -- they did share some numbers to back up just how well things are going. What it adds up to is that Sponsored Stories alone, which are the ads that appear in news feeds the way a post from a friend would, are generating more than $1 billion in revenue a year from mobile, and the figure is growing fast.

Here's the crucial detail from CFO David Ebersman: "We ended the third quarter with more than $4 million a day coming from Feed and about three-quarters of that coming from mobile Feed."

So that means $3 million a day from mobile, equal to an annual run-rate of $1.1 billion. Compare that to a few months ago, however, and it's easy to see how that the $1 billion plus number could seen be small. In late June, Sponsored Stories were generating about $500,000 a day from mobile devices. That's a 500 percent jump. While those percentage gains won't continue as the business grows, no one can look at those numbers and say that Facebook isn't working hard to make money from its 604 million mobile users.

All told, mobile ads generated about $150 million for in the quarter, roughly 14 percent of its total ad revenue. But mobile is where the push is. Facebook didn't reveal details, but it's been testing a mobile ad network in which it sells targeted ads to mobile sites and apps outside of . And Zuckerberg spoke enthusiastically about its Mobile App-Install product that lets developers buy ads mobile News Feeds as a way to drive more people to their apps. Facebook gets a bounty for each download.

"I'm excited about this because it helps developers with one of the biggest problems they face," said Zuckerberg. It also helps Zuckerberg with one of the biggest problems he's faced as the world goes mobile.

Facebook reminds developers to keep spamming to a minimum

The social network changes its developer guidelines to ensure apps don't overload your profile with notifications.

Credit: facebook
CNET: is reminding developers that a spammy app is an ignored app. The social network announced a change in its developer guidelines today to make sure the number of notifications app developers send to app users stay at a minimum.

The two new guidelines -- not sending notifications to inactive users and maintaining a 17 percent click-to-impression ratio -- go into effect on November 9.

This means apps can only send notifications to users who have visited their apps within 28 days and apps sending a lot of notifications need to make sure that users are clicking the notifications they see at least 17 percent of the time.

If apps don't pay mind to these guidelines, may block their developers from notifications.

It's part of 's emphasis on quality control on the notifications tool. The company said apps that follow the guidelines have users who click through to the app 25 percent of the time:

Monday, 6 August 2012

FG of Nigeria unfolds strategy to support local computer makers

Minister of Communications Technology,
Mrs. Omobola Johnson
The Honourabe Minister of Communications Technology of Nigeria, Mrs. Omobola Johnson has recently announced plans to dirve locally manufactured Computers penetration through policy and student ownership programme that would encourage the use of only locally manufacured PC in Nigera.

The minister said it would not augur well for Nigerians not to be able to enjoy Internet access due to lack of computers.

She, in view of this, disclosed government's plan to develop captive markets for local computer makers to drive demand for locally-made computers.

This, according to her, will be in partnership with five banks and five local computer makers.
She said, "if we build broadband infrastructure and people don't have computers, tablets, and whatever to access it, it is going to be a waste of time. The next thing we are trying to drive is that as we build the infrastructure, we need to make sure we all have the devices. And in doing this, we could create genuine demand for locally-made PCs.

"What we are saying is that there is a huge market for PCs in Nigeria but the participation of Nigerians in meeting the demands of the market is very low. It will be good if we can open up the market for Nigerian companies. So, what we are trying to do is to create captive markets for our local computer makers and the first captive markets we are trying to create are students in tertiary institutions. The reason for this is because we believe that these are people who desperately want to have computers but they may not be able to afford them."

I must say this is a welcome development for the local OEMs and ICT solution market in Nigeria and I urge Nigerians and foreigners to start to patronize Made-in-Nigeria Goods as that would help create a niche market and be better positioned to compete in the global marketplace and achieve higher margins.

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Eyejusters double-lens glasses offer DIY vision correction

U.K.-based company wants you to help send pairs of its $40 self-adjusting glasses to developing nations.
(Credit: Eyejusters)
Fixed-lens glasses are so last year -- if U.K.-based company Eyejusters has anything to say about it, that is.

Eyejusters' "SlideLens" technology enables users to turn a dial on one of the glasses' temple arms to slide two lenses across one another and thereby adjust the focus. That just might help some of the world's estimated 670 million people who need glasses but don't have them manipulate their own prescriptions.

Eyejusters calculates that its two types of glasses -- positive power (to correct near-sightedness) and negative power (to correct far-sightedness) -- could help roughly 90 percent of people whose poor vision can be corrected using glasses.

The tech alone is inspired, but so is its philanthropic focus. The company will let you buy your own pair for just $40, become a distributor yourself by preordering a distribution kit replete with glasses and vision charts, and even help other distributors get these glasses to those who need them by joining Eyejusters' Give & Get Community.

Self-adjusting glasses aren't exactly breaking news, but given the coolest pair to hit the block in 2009, called TruFocals, retailed for $895, I'd say the $40 philanthropically bent Eyejusters represent a full rotation in the right direction.

Websites to be forced to identify trolls under new measures

BBC News: Websites will soon be forced to identify people who have posted defamatory messages online.

Sites such as Facebook have been used to abuse people under the mask of anonymity.

Websites will soon to be forced to identify people who have posted defamatory messages online.

New government proposals say victims have a right to know who is behind malicious messages without the need for costly legal battles.

The powers will be balanced by measures to prevent false claims in order to get material removed.

Last week, a British woman won a court order forcing Facebook to identify users who had harassed her.

Nicola Brookes had been falsely branded a paedophile and drug dealer by users - known as trolls - on Facebook.

Facebook, which did not contest the order, will now reveal the IP addresses of people who had abused her so she can prosecute them.

The new powers, to be added to the Defamation Bill, will make this process far less time-consuming and costly, the government said.

Complying with requests would afford the website greater protection from being sued in the event of a defamation claim.

End to 'scurrilous rumour'
Currently, in legal terms, every website "hit" - visit - on a defamatory article can be counted as a separate offence.

This means many websites remove articles as soon as a defamation claim is made - either rightly or wrongly.

"Website operators are in principle liable as publishers for everything that appears on their sites, even though the content is often determined by users," said Justice Secretary Ken Clarke.

"But most operators are not in a position to know whether the material posted is defamatory or not and very often - faced with a complaint - they will immediately remove material.

Nicola Brookes said the abuse started after she posted a message about an X Factor star.

"Our proposed approach will mean that website operators have a defence against libel as long as they identify the authors of allegedly defamatory material when requested to do so by a complainant."

Mr Clarke said the measures would mean an end to "scurrilous rumour and allegation" being posted online without fear of adequate punishment.

"The government wants a libel regime for the internet that makes it possible for people to protect their reputations effectively but also ensures that information online can't be easily censored by casual threats of litigation against website operators.

"It will be very important to ensure that these measures do not inadvertently expose genuine whistleblowers, and we are committed to getting the detail right to minimise this risk" he said.

Apple draws up battle strategy against Google at WWDC

The simmering rivalry between the two tech giants just got a lot fiercer as a result of changes to Apple's mobile software.

SAN FRANCISCO -- They are classic "frienemies," collaborating when the interest is mutual and going for the other's jugular when the opportunity presents itself. So it was that on Monday Apple made clear that it's willing to cut ties with Google if that's what it takes to move its own agenda forward.

Among the product and technology announcements made at its annual developer conference here, Apple said it is expanding its Siri voice assistant software, as well as offering a complete rewrite of its maps app. Apple also added deep integration to Facebook to its phones and tablets. If it all works out as Apple wants, the net effect will be to extend Apple's lead at Google's expense. [Read how - CNET]

Here comes the greatest Internet landgrab in history

ICANN tomorrow will reveal who is going after what new domain extensions, paving the way for a very different looking Web.

Prepare for dot-madness. by Paul Sloan Frank Schilling is betting big on new domain extensions. Frank Schilling made his fortune...Read More

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Facebook Camera app really, really wants to know your location

(Credit: Screenshot by Eric Mack/CNET)
The new camera app goes on strike if you disable on the , as it refuses to access local photos unless location services are turned on. Yes, it's another bizarre privacy flub by the social network.
Since released its new “Camera” mobile app yesterday, there’s been speculation as to why the social network would buy Instagram and then release its own very similar app. The answer could be that Instagram as it already exists in the world just isn’t quite authoritarian enough for ’s tastes.

At least that’s one possible explanation — one seemingly given credence by the fact that the Camera app requires iOS Location Services to be turned on so it can access your locally-stored photos.

At issue, according to BuzzFeed, is the fact that saves a little bit of location information with each photo taken, and it uses its own process to access the camera roll, rather than the standard iOS photo picker. Apparently this means Facebook won’t go near your photos without location services turned on, because it ruins the app’s mojo or something.

CNET’s Bridget Carey received confirmation from Apple, however, that you can avoid Camera from getting your photo’s location, just in case you’re creeped out by a massive social network and now publicly-traded company knowing where you’ve been. (As if they didn’t already.)

The work around: Just make sure that when you take photos with the iPhone camera, you have turned off location permissions. No GPS data is then attached to your photos. Then you can go into Facebook Camera and upload them location-free.

See video below:

Marvel Creates Superhero To Encourage Hearing-Impaired Boy To Wear His Hearing Aid

Four year-old suffers from hearing loss and has to wear a blue hearing aid (Blue?! MAKE IT FLESH TONE). The only problem is he doesn't like wearing his hearing aid because none of the superheroes in comics do. Enter Anthony's concerned mother, stage left. No -- the OTHER stage left. "That's stage right." Theater's so confusing, I bet that's why movies are way more popular.

Desperate for help, Anthony's mother Christina D'Allesandro wrote to Marvel, hoping to discover a superhero that proved him wrong - and that's where the man with the bow, arrows and penchant for purple clothing comes in (Maya Lopez a.k.a. Echo is another hearing-impaired character in Marvel's stable of heroes, although unlike Hawkeye, she is completely deaf and wouldn't benefit from a hearing aid).

Marvel was even nice enough to create some original artwork of Anthony and Hawkeye, and, TA-DA, now Anthony doesn't mind wearing his hearing aid. Good lookin', Marvel, but where were you when, I dunno, I HAD TO WEAR HEADGEAR TO MIDDLE SCHOOL FOR A YEAR? Where was Headgear Boy, huh? You wanna know where Heargear Boy was? I'll tell you -- crying himself to sleep every night ON HIS BACK even though he HATES SLEEPING ON HIS BACK but had to because if he didn't his smile would end up crooked. *sobbing* Somebody hold me. FULL STORY...

Google tablet set to be unveiled at I/O conference?

A new report by site claims will unveil the tablet at its I/O conference on June 27.
(Credit: Nvidia)
is set to unveil its long-rumored tablet at its I/O conference next month, a new report claims.

According to site TechnoBuffalo, citing sources, the search giant will show off the device at its conference, and then give a unit to every developer in attendance.

As for the unit itself, ’s sources claim it’ll come with Nvidia’s quad-core Tegra 3 chip, and has been developed, as reported previously, with help from Asus. TechnoBuffalo couldn’t confirm which operating system will be running on the device, but it did say that it could be Android 5.0 Jelly Bean.

Rumors have been swirling for months that is planning to launch a tablet. However, reports have been mixed over when it will launch and what sort of features it’ll offer. Earlier this week, DigiTimes reported, citing sources, that the 7-inch tablet will launch in July. That followed a claim made by NPD DisplaySearch analyst Richard Shim who told CNET that the tablet’s production kicked off in April.

For its part, has stayed tight-lipped. CNET has contacted the company for comment on the latest report, and will update this story when we have more information.