Alongside the bright high-flying technology moments in 2011 were those companies who stumbled, tumbled and fell.
1. Steve Jobs’ prescient letter about Flash in 2010 came true as Adobe turned out the lights on Mobile Flash. Adobe also joined Apple and threw its support behind HTML5. The future of HTML5 brightens as more companies move in its direction.
4. HP gave up on WebOS, then gave up on its PC business, and finally gave up on its CEO. It found another CEO, reclaimed it’s PC business, and gave away WebOS.
Research firm Strategy Analytics is projecting HTML5 powered smartphones to rise from 335 million this year to 1 billion in 2013. Along with expanding the mobile App landscape, HTML5 is expected to become a significant technology behind smartphones, tablets, PCs, TVs, and cars utilizing cloud services.
HP has decided to contribute webOS to the open source software community. The move establishes an alternative mobile platform to Android for device manufactures to leverage. HP will continue to fund and develop the platform. Ongoing development will be a collaborative effort with the open source software community and interested parties.
When Apple introduced the iPad, many pundits declared there wasn’t room for a device between the Smartphone and Laptop. Even with the success of the iPad the question remains but with a twist. Is there room for a 7 inch Tablet between the 3.5 inch Smartphone and the 9.5 inch Tablet? The core of the apple (no pun intended) is about usability. Does the 7 inch form factor force fat-finger fumbling? Usability expert Jakob Nielsen released test results on the Amazon Kindle Fire. Nielsen suggests Mobile web sites work fine while full sites are frustrating because the UI elements are too small for ones fingers. Tap, tap, tap, and the debate continues.
The Android Market crossed the 10 Billionth download mark. Presently, people are downloading Apps 1 billion times a month. To celebrate this milestone, The Android Market launched a 10 day 10 cent sale on selected Apps. May the downloads be with you.
Strong Black Friday sales plus more than 3 million units previously shipped may have catapulted Amazon’s Kindle Fire into 2nd place behind the iPad in the tablet race. Fire’s low price point, strong content focus, and 7 inch screen make it an attractive iPad alternative. The Kindle Fire is on pace to becoming the best-selling Android based tablet by year-end.
It appears Microsoft is readying a version of it’s Office software for the iPad. Office for iPad would compete against Apple’s productivity suite (Numbers, Pages, and Keynote). More to the point, Office for the iPad will provide another incentive for businesses to move from PCs to Tablets.
Research In Motion announced it’s Mobile Fusion Blackberry Server Enterprise platform. With Mobile Fusion RIM extends mobile security management to iOS and Android devices. Mobile Fusion may represent a strategic shift as RIM continues to shed smartphone market share to Apple and Google.