Mobile Nations Editors

That's what's left of Manitoba's finest city. OK, not really, but I did spend much of last week in Winnipeg, in a series of well-caffeinated meetings with three other Mobile Nations editors. (From left, that's Rene Ritchie of iMore, myself, Dan Rubino of WPCentral, and ol' CrackBerry Kevin himself.)

Basically, we spent the week plotting our continued takeover of the world. We're in this for the long haul, and we've got some grand plans for the rest of this year, 2013, and beyond. 

But we've also got some fun short-term stuff we're working on. You've already seen a bit of that put into action, with our increased focus on accessories. And you're going to see some more this week with new features.

And now, a few other musings ...

Olympics on the small screen ...

Call me crazy (among other things), but I have absolutely zero desire to watch the Olympics on a phone. A tablet, perhaps. But large TVs were meant for sports. (Or vice-versa.)

Oh, and NBC, you're killing me.

You've got to be kidding me ...

If you thought Forbes' blog post opining that Apple without Steve Jobs "has all the appeal of Dell,"  than Apple was on the far side of ridiculous, here's another one you're going to love.

Forbes blogger Adrian Kingsley-Hughes cites British Telecom in an EETimes piece about how one-third of 1,000 Android app that BT took a look at supposedly have malware. The Forbes headline escalates matters to an alarming "BT: Almost Every Android Device Compromised With "Some Kind Of Malware," not worrying that the second half of that quote in the EETimes reads "although often it’s not clear if that code is active or what it is doing."

Headlines are tricky. Lord knows I've blown more than my share, having been writing them for a dozen years now, but that's just bad. Kingsley-Hughes correctly suspects that the vague definition of "malware" leaves some pretty big holes in that story, but the damage has already been done. 

That a technology journalist/analyst (really?) in that EETimes piece says he found "malware" in a Google app on the Galaxy S III -- the app wasn't named, nor the nature of the "malware" -- should be a pretty big red flag, too. I'm not overly worried about Android here. I can't say the same for the state of the news coverage of it. And it looks like a lot of you agreed.

Quiet patience, or an open dialog?

It's been interesting to see the development process of several Android Twitter apps. The highly anticipated Carbon for Android should see release any day now. It's been a couple weeks since we got an official update on the release schedule, and the developer gave word this weekend that things have fallen a little behind. Carbon has been in closed alpha testing for some time now.

Meanwhile, apps like Boid and TweetLanes -- two very respectable Android Twitter clients in their own rights -- have been available to the public but are very much works in progress. And check either the Boid or TweetLanes Twitter feeds, and you'll get updates on the progress, seemingly hour by hour. 

It's an interesting dichotomy in developer PR strategies -- an open dialog highlighting upcoming fixes and features versus a more subdued (I'd go far as to say less-spammy) interaction, with a full-featured release soon to drop. Of course, Carbon isn't publicly available yet, so we're not quite talking Apples to Apples here.

There's no one way to do things here. And there shouldn't be. It's just been interesting to watch.

Patents not the purpose ...

A lot of details have came out in recent days in advance of this week's trial between Apple and Samsung over something looking like something else, or something ...

Answer me this: Which do you suppose is more important to Samsung -- changing an odd feature here and there, or having phones blocked by injunction? 

There's certainly a point to be made by fighting all this patent nonsense. But at the end of the day, Samsung (and HTC, and Motorola, and LG, and ZTE, and everyone else) sells phones. Period. Proactively removing on-device search sucks. But it sucks less than headlines announcing that the hottest phone in the world has been banned, and way less than it being kept off store shelves.

You guys keep selling 'em. We'll keep writing about them. And let the lawyers figure out all their crap.

Speaking of patents ...

And I really do hate speaking of patents -- I'd much prefer to speak about phones -- but give this Groklaw piece a read.


TTFN. Lots of good stuff coming up this week.