Samsung last month released its brand new phone the Galaxy Nexus, and with it Google’s latest version of Android which is 4.0. So what can we expect from Android 4.0 codenamed Ice Cream Sandwich and the Galaxy Nexus? Well actually quite a lot it would seem. This version brings with it the availability of home screen folders. With this handy tool you can organize your apps in whatever way you choose or if you prefer the all apps screen it will still be available. If you like texting then you’ll be happy to hear that there are improvements made to the built in spell checker. Words that are spelled incorrectly will now be underlined and tapping that word will show word suggestions. In my opinion one of the most interesting of the latest features iAndroid Beam which will allow two people to transfer data and apps just by touching two Android 4.0 phones together.
With the release of Android 4.0 in addition to adding some great features and really refining the user interface Google is also attempting to unify Android under one look and feel. Their goal is to eventually do away with the skins manufacturers put on their phones such as HTC sense and Motoblur so that other than hardware all Android phones will be the same. Is this a good move on Google’s part? I don’t really know HTC sense tends to be a selling point for HTC’s Android based phones. I guess only time will tell on this one. If you’d like more information on Android 4.0 check out www.android.com and if you’re interested in mobile options for your business give us a call and let us assist you.
Smart phones are so ingrained into business now; it is almost a requirement to have one. It is used for emails, tweets, contact information, texting, maps to get you to clients, apps to entertain you while waiting for clients, and dare I say it...phone calls!
The problem is that the smart phones are the one part of your company with sensitive information that walks out the door every day. There are emails with company information, contacts that are important or telling, access to internal systems all on these devices and pictures that are geotagged.
Few businesses or IT companies have addressed this issue to control and maintain a standard for the phones that protect their companies. These devices are more vulnerable than most people think. Each can get malware just like computers which steal information from the phone. This usually is done by the user downloading an application to the phone which comprises the phone. How many users really read the information on what the app access on the phone?
There are a lot of things to consider about the phones. Phones get lost, stolen, can be access without the user knowing, the user could leave the company with the phone. There is even the government to worry about. Yes, it is time to put on your tin foil hat and read along. Recently there have been several cases of phones being subject to searches during routine traffic stops, legally. In some states there isn't a requirement to have a warrant to go through the phone, even it if is off and not in plain sight. The phone is considered to be a container and personal property similar to clothes. If the Officers could search your person for weapons or illegal materials, then the phone is fair game as well. There have been convictions based off of text messages found in phones. Luckily, there are campaigns to make the warrant required to conduct the search, but we will see if they get passed. Why should you care? Well, some of these searches involve downloading ALL the data on the phone and keeping it. Your company data is now in the hands of the Government, in data storage facilities that you do not control and maintained by whoever was the lowest bidder for the job. Comforting isn't it.
You can take off the tin foil hat now……
What can you do to remedy this? Create your policies that control or set the level of expectations for the usage, maintenance and protection of the phones. The Information Technology groups are best placed to champion these changes. We understand the technology, business needs, and the users who use the phones.
A great resource I found on the internets was from the Department of Commerce, National Institute of Standards and Technology Special Publication 800-124 - Guidelines on Cell Phone and PDA Security. Yes it says PDA...I know seems dated, the publication came out in 2008. But it is still a great place to start. It has information on what the risks are, suggestions on how to reduce the risks, and insights that will help make informed decisions. Set up your protection now before something happens. It isn't a matter of if, just when.
Amazon Cloud Drive is your hard drive in the cloud. Store your music, videos, photos, and documents on Amazon's secure servers. All you need is a web browser to upload, download, and access your files from any computer. Get more details about using Cloud Drive
Your Cloud Drive comes with 5 GB of free storage—enough space to store up to 1000 songs. This space is yours to use as you like and you will never be charged for it.
Use your Amazon Cloud Drive as the go-to location for all your important files. At work, at home, during your commute or while on vacation—you'll always have access to everything you've uploaded to your Cloud Drive through your Amazon account.
Both Apple and Google have been flirting with the idea for some time to allow for storage and streaming in a way that it out-of-mind for the consumer. It looks like Amazon beat them both to the punch, however.
If you're a Dropbox user, you'd find Amazon's service familiar but with a few choice differences. For me, the big dealbreaker is that Amazon Cloud Player has no iOS app. In fact, when you load the website for Cloud Player inside of Mobile Safari, it suggest that you use Internet Explorer. Burn.
Also, there is no desktop version of Cloud Player. As a heavy Dropbox user myself, the ability to drag and drop files into Dropbox folders is a huge reason for using their services. The Dropbox website is a nice Plan B. However, the Cloud Drive website is Plan A, as there is no desktop version of the app.
The Cloud Drive pricing is very appealing, though. 5GB free as opposed to Dropbox's 2GB free per month. And if/when you buy an album from Amazon, it automatically upgrades you to 20GB/per month free for a year. Not too shabby. That's a big difference w/ Dropbox. Many people use Amazon to buy and rent movies as well as purchase music and services. It may be a perfect fit for most folks.
You're not able to share folders, however. This is another great reason to have Dropbox. You can share multiple folders with family and friends or ever co-workers. My wife and I share a folder for our son's pictures. Whenever we snap a new picture of him on our iPhones, we'll upload them to his Dropbox folder to share them with each other. Also, it's the ultimate backup for those photos.
In terms of streaming media, Amazon has definately beaten Apple and their iTunes service to the punch. But will the consumer be able to see through the famous Apple Reality Distortion Field when iTunes streaming is announced?
Stern's five-year deal with Sirius ends in December. Sirius XM CEO Mel Karmazin, a Howard fan, says he wants Stern to re-up.
But at 56, Stern says he may want to work less than he does now, which is four days a week, 39 weeks a year.
To which Karmazin may say, "Less work, less money." Sirius now pays $100 million a year for Stern, though that covers all show expenses and not just his salary.
Stern says he has loved Sirius and would like to stay. But late last week he said, "It's probably not going to happen."
What could happen, he has suggested, is starting his own Internet podcast, available by subscription.
He could become an app.
First of all, how amazing is that picture, right? Now onto business. The NY Daily News goes on to say that at $5/month, with a low estimate of about a million subscribers, Stern would be making around $60M/year.
He'd be foolish not to. How many Stern fans would love to grab a free app, enter in your credentials and stream his show live, or any any recent shows at their own leisure? I'd plunk down a few dollars for that. Plus, it would mean one less bag of Cheetos a month for myself.
Stern could set his schedule himself, take as many days off as he wants, and know that fans are only paying the cost of a movie rental per month to get a chance to listen to him live. Who knew we'd be living in a fantasy land where a radio show host could possibly run his entire network based on one Apple app?