Altabel Group's Blog

Posts Tagged ‘RIM

As shipments of Android phones reached 206 million in 2011, Google’s mobile OS captured 46 percent of the global market, easily making it the largest Smartphone platform, according to Taiwan’sMarket Intelligence & Consulting Institute (MIC).

Such growth paves the way for Android to carve out a 50 percent slice of the market in 2012, says MIC. Though Android will retain its firm lead, the market will also be dominated this year by Apple’s iOS with a 19 percent share and Microsoft’s Windows Phone with a 13 percent share.

Looking at the major Smartphone makers, MIC sees Samsung in the lead with a 21.7 percent share, followed by Apple with 18.7 percent. HTC share will rise to 10.9 percent. But Nokia and RIM will face a rough climate with their shares dropping to 15.6 percent and 8.6 percent, respectively.

Overall, Smartphone shipments could hit 614 million this year, a 36 percent jump from the 452 million shipped last year, estimates MIC. For now, Smartphone owners account for only around 14 percent of all mobile subscribers around the globe. But as lower-priced smartphones reach consumers, especially in emerging markets, that percentage will grow to 17 percent this year and 40 percent in 2016.

Looking to eke out more global business, the major Smartphone vendors focused on emerging markets last year. With a varied lineup of smartphones, Samsung has gained strong traction among emerging nations. Apple expanded its sales channels in more emerging countries, capturing healthy sales in China but also targeting South American markets such as Brazil.
Though HTC’s core consumer is in North America and Europe, the company had also grabbed more business in China. RIM has been doing well in areas such as Indonesia, which rely heavily on text messaging. And Nokia is hoping for success with Windows Phone launches in India and China during the first quarter of the year. Still, North America remains the most lucrative market. North America may only represent 15 percent of feature and Smartphone units shipped globally, but due to the high proportion of high-end Smartphone sales, it constitutes 40 percent of total smartphones sold by value.

Kind Regards,
Lina Deveikyte
Altabel Group – Professional Software Development

The fact that a Smartphone could act as a card is an inconsequential change. You still have to carry a wallet, and as long as that’s the case, a simple plastic card remains easier to use, given that the technology for reading them is universal and all the proposed mobile alternatives require new, often separate, readers and work only with certain vendors – you’ll still be carrying plastic for the other banks’ and merchants’ systems. Payments can’t get more mobile than they already are.

Replacing credit and debit cards with something embedded in your Smartphone is not worth the bother. But what if you could replace the entire wallet? That would be a worthwhile change. Open your wallet, and what do you have in it? A driver’s license or other government ID. Credit and debit cards. Cash. An insurance identification card or two. Probably some family photos. Perhaps a library card, a store loyalty card, a transit pass, and a company or building ID or access card. Maybe a few other membership cards.

Most of these cards are just information holders, storing an account number or membership number. Those are easily replaced with data on your Smartphone, which could be presented when needed in any of several ways: as a facsimile of the physical card, as a bar code or QR code for scanning (such as already used by many airlines for electronic boarding passes), or as bits in an embedded NFC or RFID chip. One or more apps could easily handle these information cards’ data.

I’d expect Google, Apple, Microsoft, and RIM to each offer such an app as part of the core app collection on their respective mobile OSes. Such an ID app would have a major advantage over physical wallets: if your Smartphone is lost or stolen, you can log in to your account and invalidate those accounts on that device, then transfer them to a new one.

Credit and debit cards are really no different than any other information card. The PIN is not stored on the card, and the card doesn’t do anything active to prove its identity; there are no smarts on the card. But there could be on a Smartphone version, such as alerts when you’ve reached specified balance thresholds.

One last issue: What about power? A physical wallet requires no electricity to work, whereas a Smartphone does. I’m not concerned about that. It’s exceedingly common to have a charger at work, at home, and in the car. Now that the European Union has forced device makers to standardize on USB power, it’s both cheaper and easier to connect a device to a charger, whether yours or someone else’s.

I fully expect that in the not-too-distant future the Smartphone will become your wallet, and that folded leather or cloth contraption will go the way of the wristwatch: abandoned by most, used as a retro fashion accessory by some. Which leads to one more change that will need to occur: Clothing designers will need to rethink the pockets in men’s pants, as the back pocket will not be where you’ll want to carry your Smartphone/e-wallet 🙂

Best Regards,

Kristina Kozlova

Marketing Manager



Altabel Group

Professional Software Development


We know that Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android. Both are real blockbusters, and we don’t need to find any reason why they can’t simultaneously thrive for years to come.

At the moment, with WebOS undergoing an open-source reboot and RIM’s next-generation BlackBerry OS apparently nowhere near completion, only one other phone platform has an immediate shot at being a contender: Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7.5. It isn’t there yet. According to Gartner’s latest worldwide market-share numbers show Windows Phone capturing a piddling 1.5 percent of the market, behind five other rivals.
We came up with some factors to prove it:

Great software. Last year’s Windows Phone 7 was tantalizing but decidedly unfinished. Windows Phone 7.5 is just plain pleasing–utterly original, easy to figure out, and both efficient and fun to use. In terms of overall pleasantness, it’s iOS’s most serious rival. (Google’s Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich is easily the best version of Android to date, but it still comes off as a nerdier, clunkier echo of iOS.)
Apps. Lots of them. iOS still has the most programs and the best programs. Android is giving Apple increasingly fierce competition. Both platforms have app selections that number in the hundreds of thousands.
And Windows Phone? Well, it certainly isn’t floundering. After a little over a year, it’s got 40,000 third-party apps to its name, which sounds like at least modest momentum to WPh users.

Of course, Windows Phone doesn’t just need lots of software; it needs the right software. So far, its roster of high-profile apps is spotty. It’s got Netflix and Spotify, for instance, but not Hulu and Pandora.
Support from carriers. Most Americans buy their phones from AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, or Verizon Wireless. At the moment, AT&T has five Windows handsets, T-Mobile have two, and Sprint and Verizon have just one apiece. These companies don’t necessarily need to stock gazillions of models–hey, the iPhone is available only in one new version and two older ones–but they need to go out of their way to tell shoppers what Windows Phone is and why they might prefer it over an iPhone or an Android handset. Wireless merchants don’t have a fabulous track record, however, when it comes to handling products that require a bit of explanation.
Buzz. Windows Phone won’t surge unless people get excited over it. And one survey showed that Windows Phone 7 owners were happy, or at least happier than Android users. But with Windows Phone sales so meager to date, there simply aren’t enough consumers out there showing off their handsets to their buddies and raving about them.

We remain cautiously optimistic that Windows Phone will catch on. For one thing, Microsoft can afford to be patient with it–and the world’s leading software company really can’t afford to abandon the smartphone software market.
More important, Windows Phone 7.5 is a fine operating system that deserves to be successful. Sooner or later, good products usually do okay. If Windows Phone doesn’t, it might be a sign that the dynamics of the smartphone business aren’t going to let anything that isn’t iOS or Android do well anytime soon.

You could

Kind Regards,

Natalia Osipchik

Business Development Manager



Altabel Group

Professional Software Development


Not so long ago we discussed that HTML5 will replace Silverlight in Windows8. And now new triumph of HTML5. Adobe decided to kill Flash for mobile and focus its attention on HTML5. Think most of you have heard about it as Adobe`s message triggered hot discussions on different techforums and in Ln.

To my mind, this must have been a hard decision for Adobe to make. Adobe’s chief of developer relations Mike Chambers in order to clear the situation, gave in his blog three main reasons why they decided to do it:
HTML5 is already almost universally supported in mobile browsers and Adobe realized that Flash would never get there. “Our goal has always been to obtain the same level of ubiquity for the Flash Player on mobile browsers, but, at the end of the day, it is something that did not, and was not going to happen.”
Apps made browser-based apps less necessary. “Essentially, users’ preferences to consume rich content on mobile devices via applications means that there is not as much need or demand for the Flash Player on mobile devices as there is on the desktop.”

Fragmentation. To make Flash work on mobile platforms, Adobe had to work with multiple hardware makers (Motorola, Samsung), platform companies (Google, RIM), and component manufacturers (like Nvidia). That took too much time. “This is something that we realized is simply not scalable or sustainable.”
So now it`s clear that Adobe will increase investment in HTML5 and shift resources from Flash to HTML5.

In his blog Mike Chambers underlined that Adobe is not killing Flash completely. They will continue investing in and promoting Flash for desktop browsers, as well as AIR on mobile devices. However here a few pitfalls and questions can arise. Firstly: why should we use Air instead of native application? Air depends on a huge runtime and it doesn’t have access to too many things. Second: why to keep AIR alive when the new PhoneGap technology allows to achieve the same result – native apps for the same number of platforms but developed with HTML, CSS and JS? AIR seems to be just a temporary solution for all those Flash developers that hasn’t got a chance to switch yet… What is more Adobe`s message can lead to the mass panic of the clients: Why should they want something in Flash when they can have it in html5 and it will be viewable from mobile? As the result the future of flash is still not clear.

Flash biggest selling point was the motto “Build once, deploy anywhere”, and now it is no longer true. It seems to me that Adobe`s message led to quite an important communication error and there isn’t much Adobe can do to reverse the message. As Adobe finally admitted that Apple was right and named HTML5 ‘the best and only solution’ , it completely deteriorated the image of Flash and admitted the victory of HTML5 for mobile.

Best regards,
Anna Kozik
Altabel Group – professional software development

Apple’s iPad will have overwhelming majority of 2011 sales, but by end of 2015, Android expected to run on 36 percent of tablets.

Apple created the modern tablet market, and its iPad has become the undisputed king of tablet computers. The iPad promises to hold that dominance for years to come, research firm Gartner said.

Apple’s iPad will command 73.4 percent of global tablet sales in 2011 and will hold the majority of tablet sales until 2014, Gartner said.

In 2015, Apple will still be dominant over Android tablets and others, with 46 percent of the market. In that year, however, Android tablets and even some from Microsoft and Research in Motion will gain ground, Gartner said.

Gartner analyst Carolina Milanesi said Apple does so well because Apple delivers a superior and unified user experience across its hardware, software and services. Apple had the foresight to create this market and in doing that, planned for it, as far as component supplies such as memory and screen. This allowed Apple to bring the iPad out at a very competitive price and no compromise in experience among the different models that offer storage and connectivity options.

By comparison, Android tablets will account for 17.3 percent of sales in 2011, Gartner said, while any other platform will have no more than 5 percent.

According to the survey, overall in 2011, tablet computer sales globally will top 63 million devices, an increase of 261 percent over last year.

It is predicted, that by the end of 2015, tablet sales will reach 326 million devices.

As expected, the iPad will have the overwhelming majority of 2011 tablet sales, with 73.4 percent, or nearly 46.7 million total. Android’s total in 2011 will be 17.3 percent, or 11 million.

In 2015, Gartner said Android will grow to 116 million tablet sales, compared to 148 million for Apple.
Also in 2015, Microsoft tablets and Research in Motion’s QNX-based tablet will be sizable market forces. Microsoft is expected to sell 34 million units in 2015, while RIM’s will sell 26 million, Gartner said.
For 2015, Gartner’s forecasts give Apple 46 percent of the tablet market, followed by Android devices at 36 percent, Microsoft at 11 percent and QNX at 8 percent.

So what are your thoughts on this research? What do you think, who will take the lead? What are you predictions?

It would be great to hear your comments and assumptions on that point.

Kind Regards,

Natalia Osipchik

Business Development Manager



Altabel Group

Professional Software Development


Times are tough for BlackBerry-maker Research in Motion (RIM). But maybe there are some reasons why it’s still too early to count RIM out?

LI professionals have different opinions on this point:

«I’ve lost faith in them – look to be a “one-hit wonder”. They dominated the business device market for over a decade with their one trick of really effective email to a handheld device, but they have failed to really move forward with the rest of the Smartphone market, and I think they are done as a major player.»
Bernard Gore
Programmer, Project & Change expert

«I think that RIM will eventually focus on the enterprise market and the consumer space will not be a priority. Many corporations have a huge investment in BB tech and I do not believe there is a solid interface between Lotus Notes and iPhone. They will no longer lead the market but will have an emphasis on security etc. as we have seen with the Playbook being the first tablet certified for use by US government. So keeping the faith depends on what markets you are in…»
Steve McKenna
Government Solutions Executive

«Blackberry is number one in the business market, what I do see at the moment is people with a work Blackberry and a personal iPhone (or every now and than an Android device).
Will that change fast? Not if the other come up with security of the BB.»
Ronald van de Meent
Financial Systems specialist

«In terms of a company they are not listening to the shareholders. They are keeping the same management staff that is not viewing Google/Apple as a competition and altering their model to compete. Right now RIM is laying off workers thinking that will solve the issue. RIM is headed down the toilet until someone can rescue them soon or they are going to be irrelevant just like Palm was before it got bought out.»
Ryan Donnell
Associate 2 at State Street

«There are two viewpoints to consider here, business and consumer.
First, from the business viewpoint. Blackberry is historically (and still is, according to the latest comparisons), far more secure than any other Smartphone available. For some businesses, that is sufficient reason to stick with Blackberry. However, business that aren’t as concerned with security can consider other options. Then, other factors, such as application availability, network integration capability, and employee happiness, come into play. Other phones can easily compete in these areas, giving serious market competition to the Blackberry.
Now, from the consumer viewpoint. For most consumers, security is a minimal factor when selecting a phone. That puts Blackberry at a serious disadvantage in the consumer market.
My opinion is that the two markets will slowly merge, as we move slowly towards a society that sees the phone as an extension of the person. The consumer viewpoint will infiltrate the business viewpoint, and more businesses will either give their employees a choice of Smartphones or allow them to integrate their personal Smartphone. Whether this will be good or bad is difficult to say.»
James Tullos
Engineer at Software and Engineering Associates, Inc.

And what are your reasons for still believing in BlackBerry?

Kind Regards,
Lina Deveikyte
Altabel Group – professional software development

Not so long ago no one was sure if Android would ever be relevant. It made its debut in the fall of 2007, and for the first 2 years of its existence Android had a tough time making first steps. It got its big break last November with the release of the Motorola Droid on the Verizon network.

The real Android explosion has really erupted over the past year. Even in US where iOS popularity and loyalty to it are so high. In the first 6 months of 2010 Android accounted for 30.8% of all smartphone sales in the US – up from just 4.6% in the first half of the year before. Apple’s iOS, on the other hand, slipped from 21.1% in the first half of 2009 to 19.8 % in the first 6 months of 2010. In the 3rd quarter of 2010 in US Android devices accounted for a whopping 44% of smartphones purchased – an increase of 11 percentage points over 2010’s 2nd quarter. Meanwhile, Apple’s iOS was up one point to 23 %. That means Android-powered smartphones outsold iPhones by almost 2 to 1.

Also Gartner research firm has projected that by the end of the year sales of Android devices will exceed those based on the BlackBerry OS and the iPhone OS, meaning that Android will trail only Symbian as the world’s most-used mobile operating system.

Above there are Android numbers compared to iOS’s. Still keep in mind that much of Android’s gains in the market is coming at the BlackBerry manufacturer’s expense rather than Apple, according to industry analysis by NPD. The HTC EVO 4G, Motorola Droid X, and other new high-end Android devices have been gaining momentum at carriers that traditionally have been strong RIM distributors.

And that is how, partially, analysts explained the Android boom. By pointing out the plethora of manufacturers that equip their smartphones with Google’s mobile OS, and highlighting their availability on all the major US carriers.

The interesting thing is that rumors that Apple will soon offer the iPhone to other US carriers besides AT&T pop up on a regular basis. Last month the Wall Street Journal reported that Apple would add Verizon to its US carrier stable early next year.

There is another reason offered for Android’s strong sales – there really hasn’t been any good alternative. For instance, MS’s Windows Mobile faded badly this year, and its Windows Phone 7 has yet to appear on handsets in the US.

And what’s your point of view: Will Android be able to keep its conquering pace same aggressive? What will be its place in future – both in USA and European markets?
Looking forward to see your points of view.

Also it’s interesting if the history [scenario with iOS vs. Android] will repeat itself in the emerging tablet market. If you’d like to look through some thoughts, welcome to read the next discussion called “Tablet market: extension of the Android vs. iOS battlefield”.

Helen Boyarchuk
Altabel Group

%d bloggers like this: