Thursday, July 31, 2008

Beijing Welcomes You

If you’re planning to head to China for the Beijing Olympics, check this video above to get a taste of what to expect in Beijing

The Beijing Welcomes You video series is beautifully done. The version above includes subtitled English to supplement the imagery in the music videos.

Although the promotional video is in Chinese, it’s a stunning depiction of the tourist attractions available in Beijing. It includes shots of the world-class, awe-inspiring architecture that’s been erected in Beijing, including the Bird’s Nest Olympic stadium and not forgetting a part where Jackie Chan sang.

Even if you don’t understand Chinese, this official video clip can be enjoyed by anyone interested in China’s culture.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

China's online population increases to 253 million, overtakes the US

China's fast-growing population of internet users has surpassed the US to become the world's biggest, with 253 million people online at the end of June according to China Internet Network Information (CNNIC).

China's web usage is growing at explosive rates despite government efforts to block access to sites deemed subversive or pornographic. The financial size of China's online market, though, still trails those of the US, South Korea and other countries.

The latest figure on internet users is a 56% increase from a year ago, the China internet Network Information Center said.

The US had an estimated 223.1 million internet users in June, according to Nielsen Online.

China's internet penetration is still low at just 19.1% in comparison with penetration rates of 71.2% in South Korea and 68.4% in Japan, which rank among the highest in the world. Chinese Internet penetration is marginally lower than developmentally comparable Russia, which stands at 20.8%. Iceland is highest at 85.4%, the U.S. has 71.9%, India only 5.3% leaving a huge room for growth China.

In addition, the number of broadband users in China is over 200 million for the first time, reaching 214 million and .CN domain names, whose number surpasses that of Germany's .DE with 12.188 million, has become the most widely used national top-level domain name.

84.7% of Chinese Internet users are now accessing the Net via broadband. That’s 214 million broadband users, compared with 168 million at the end of 2007 meaning the dialup connectivity is as good as over.

There are now 84.7 million individual computers accessing the Internet from homes, an increase of 6.7 million in the first half of 2008, for a half-year growth of 8.6%. Desktop PCs remain the main form of access, with 87.3% of Netizens accessing by desktops. Notebook computers and mobile devices are increasingly important to, with 30.9% and 28.9% respectively. These are both trending upward while desktop PC access is declining.

Access via mobile phone is still mainly supplemental, and is rarely the main means of access. Of the 73.05 million who reportedly use mobile handsets to access, highest rates are in the 18-24 age group, with 56.1% of mobile Internet users in that age range and 86% are in the 30 or under group. Students make up a huge percentage of those — 39.7%

Users are accessing online mainly from :
  • Home: 59.4%
  • Internet cafĂ©: 19.6%
  • Workplace: 12.5%
  • Campus: 8.1%
  • Other: 0.5%
Demographics :

Male : 53.6%
Female : 46.4%

China’s Internet users are young. Netizens with a high school education represent the most, at 39%. Students make up 30% of all Chinese Internet users, with the next largest group being employees in enterprises, who represent 25.5%. Very low spending power. Only 6.8% of non-student Internet users make over 5000 RMB ((about US $733) per month.

The average Chinese Internet user spent 19 hours a week online in the month of June 2008.

What do users do online ?
  • Internet Music: 84.5% (down from 86.6%)
  • Internet news: 81.5% (up from 73.6%)
  • Instant messaging: 77.2% (down from 81.4%)
  • Internet video: 71.0% (down from 76.9%)
  • Search engines: 69.2% (down from 72.4%)
  • Email: 62.6% (up from 56.5%)
  • Online games: 58.3% (down from 59.3%)
  • Own a blog/personal space: 42.3% (up from 23.5% but at the end of 07 it was “updates”)
  • Visit forums/BBS 38.8% (not on the list in end of 07)
  • Online purchasing: 25% (up from 22.1%)
  • Online banking 23.4% (up from 19.2%)
  • Posting to forums/BBS: 23.4% (not on list at end of 07)
  • Online education: 18.5% (up from 16.6%)
  • Online trading/mutual fund investment: 16.9% (not on last list)
  • Online job search: 14.9% (up from 10.4%)
A special thanks to Kaiser Kuo for having provided a comprehensive summary of the CNNIC report as many of the points above are taken from his site.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

2012 - The End of Internet

The crew at I-Power (net neutrality movement at Ning) had confirmed that Bell Canada and TELUS by 2012 or as soon as 2010, ISP's all over the globe will reduce Internet access to a TV-like subscription model, only offering access to sites that you paid for and for additional sites, you will have to pay extra. These "additional and smaller" sites would then lose all their exposure and eventually shut down, resulting in what could be seen as the end of the Internet.

Dylan Pattyn, who is currently writing an article for Time Magazine on the issue, has official confirmation that TELUS has already started blocking all websites that aren't in the subscription package.

In fact its nothing new as China Mobile has been doing this for a while ie, free GPRS access to their mobile internet portal and pay as you go plan for off-deck browsing. While its a great strategy for infrastructure providers to get more from their access point, its certainly not a good news for content developers. Not only will it discourage content aggregation, it will kill any content aggregation initiatives from the offset. What will the world of internet be without the content??? A boring world just like the existing controlled media.

What can we do?
The reason why the movement at I-Power is releasing this information is because they believe we can stop it. More awareness means more mainstream media shedding light on it, more political interest and more pressure on the ISP's to keep the Internet an open free space. You can join their movement here.

Someday our internet access package could look like this below. It will be sad that our internet which was invented open could one day evolve and turn into a controlled and paid medium.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Its that simple idea from your backyard That Made It BIG!

I was discussing with my buddy yesterday about a research web 2.0 project and through out the discussion a simple idea that we started talking about became more and more complex as the dicussion continues. I had to prompt him a few times to keep it simple as the majority of the internet users are simple people and its the simple user experience that will be the winning recipe at the end of the day.
In my previous startup, i had kept to simplicity from the business plan to executing it. It was a simple idea that i had managed to sell to my angels, my team, and of course the guys who paid me for the services rendered. My idea was not created by a troop of people, it was created by myself in my room using an old PC that was connected to a 9.6K modem. That was all i had afterall i was just in my mid 20s then graduated from University not too long ago.....and it was the beginning of the internet revolution.

In fact ideas can be created anywhere. Your laptop is your shop. You store your inventory in your dorm room. You cooked up your idea in your backyard. Or the basement.
Microsoft, Apple, Netscape and even FedEx were conceived by people who were pretty much at that age.

Pursuing business is now than it was before. Blame it on the internet! Young people like yourself can start a business with your own savings or by borrowing from your parents and relatives. Resources online give you access to information about setting up your own enterprise; they link you to other entrepreneurs who can teach you, or who can expand your business through partnerships.

Facebook thats worth billions are started by college students and there are many more great startups that are initiated by young people. Keep the ideas simple and dont be bothered if you had to start from your garage or backyard. You never know that your idea would eventually morph into another phenomena like Apple, Microsoft or Google. Keep your eyes open and look out for that winning ideas.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Warren Buffett’s 7 Secrets for Living a Happy and Simple Life

In this world full of the rich and famous, Warren Buffett remains the greatest investor ever born not due to his acumen for the wise investments that he has made during his life but more for exemplifying the greatness with simplicity. He’s full of wit and happiness and this is at the core of everything that he does.

Secret # 1 : Happiness comes from within.
In my adult business life I have never had to make a choice of trading between professional and personal. I tap-dance to work, and when I get there it’s tremendous fun.

Secret # 2 Find happiness in simple pleasures.
I have simple pleasures. I play bridge online for 12 hours a week. Bill and I play, he’s “chalengr” and I’m “tbone”.

Secret # 3 Live a simple life.
I just naturally want to do things that make sense. In my personal life too, I don’t care what other rich people are doing. I don’t want a 405 foot boat just because someone else has a 400 foot boat.

Secret # 4 Think Simply.
“I want to be able to explain my mistakes. This means I do only the things I completely understand.”

Secret # 5 Invest Simply.
The best way to own common stocks is through an index fund.

Secret # 6 Have a mentor in life.
I was lucky to have the right heroes. Tell me who your heroes are and I’ll tell you how you’ll turn out to be. The qualities of the one you admire are the traits that you, with a little practice, can make your own, and that, if practiced, will become habit-forming.

Secret # 7 Making money isn’t the backbone of our guiding purpose; making money is the by-product of our guiding purpose.
If you’re doing something you love, you’re more likely to put your all into it, and that generally equates to making money.

via Successsoul

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Friday, July 25, 2008

Beijing opens new Airport Express ahead of Oympic Games

If you are arriving at the Beijing International Airport in China, you will be able to board the new Airport Express train that will take you directly to the heart of Beijing. This will save you all the trouble getting a cab and no more worrying about the traffic road condition which can be a nightmare if you are rushing for time.

The line will have only four stops along the entire line. There will be two stops in central Beijing -- Dongzhimen and Sanyuanqiao -- with the two remaining stops at Beijing Capital International Airport. The Airport Express reaches Terminal 3 before reaching Terminal 2; passengers for Terminal 1 need to use the transfer passageway at Terminal 2.

Service intervals are expected to be 5 minutes at the start, with the entire trip taking around 18 minutes (Terminal 3) or 25 minutes (Terminal 2), not bad for a journey of 28km. I used to spend around at least 30-40 minutes of commuting by taxi from the airport to my hotel provided if the traffic is good.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Digital Adspend soon to overtake newspapers in China

Digital adspend in China will overtake both newspaper and outdoor advertising by the end of this year, with the gap set to widen in 2009, according to new figures from GroupM.

The media group’s forecast predicts that the combined spend for internet and other digital advertising (principally mobile and LCD screens) will reach $3.6 billion this year, and $5.2 billion in 2009. In contrast newspaper adspend is projected to show steady, if modest, growth from US$3.2 billion in 2007 to $3.6 billion in 2009.

The adspend for out of home, meanwhile, is expected to reach $3.1 billion in 2008, growing slightly to $3.9 billion by the end of 2009.

The boom in digital advertising is partly responsible for the declining share of total media occupied by television. While TV will remain the dominant medium in terms of advertising dollars (projected to rake in almost US$20 billion in 2008 and $23 billion in 2009), its share of total media is set to decline, from 65 per cent in 2007, to 63 per cent in 2008 and 61 per cent in 2009.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

LG posts record profit and will likely to take 3rd handset position

LG posted record quarterly profit and sales in its second-quarter results announced today, a development some analysts believe will make it the world's third-largest handset vendor.

Total second-quarter 2008 net income at the firm surged 84 percent to SKW706.9 billion (US$691 million), from SKW384.6 billion (US$376 million) a year earlier. Sales during the quarter rose 22.5 percent to SKW7.23 trillion (US$7.1 billion), from SKW5.9 trillion (US$5.8 billion) a year earlier.

Mobile handset sales advanced 45 percent to 27.7 million units shipped, led by its high-end 'Voyager,' 'Viewty' and 'Venus' models. The vendor said it sold 7 million touchscreen devices during the period, at an average selling price of US$530. Profit at the mobile phone division, which accounted for 38 percent of revenue last year, doubled to SKW547.3 billion (US$535 million), on handset sales of SKW3.75 trillion (US$3.7 billion).

An International Herald Tribune report notes that some analysts, including Goldman Sachs, believe LG probably moved past Motorola in market share during the second-quarter to seize the number three position behind Nokia and Samsung. Nokia last week reported earnings and revenue that exceeded analysts' estimates though profits dropped by 60% and forecast that industry shipments this year may surpass its previous projection of about 10 percent growth.

Meanwhile, number-five vendor Sony Ericsson Friday said second-quarter profit fell because of declining sales of higher-priced handsets and product delays. The company plans to cut about 2,000 jobs as a result. Second-placed Samsung is scheduled to report results this Friday.

Tiny Korea will soon capture some 25% of the global mobile handset dominance. It has only taken them a short time to reach where they are and if the other mobile handset players dont buck up, Samsung and LG will definitely post more gains in the nearest future. Can you imagine Samsung and LG overtaking Nokia at some point?? Anything is possible....

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Apple Reports Record Third Quarter Results

Apple on Monday reported fiscal third quarter earnings of $1.07 billion, or $1.19 a share, on revenue of $7.46 billion, well ahead of Wall Street estimates as Mac sales continued to surge. However, Apple lowered its outlook with concerns over CEO Steve Jobs’ health.

Macs fueled Apple’s quarter as Apple shipped 2,496,000 Macs in the quarter, up 41 percent in units from a year ago. Apple’s Mac tally wasn’t totally unexpected given that the company has been picking up market share at a rapid clip. Indeed, Apple is the third largest PC vendor in the U.S., according to Gartner.

The company also sold a little more than 11 million iPods in the quarter, up 12 percent from a year ago. Apple moved 717,000 iPhones in the third quarter, up from 270,000 a year ago.

Here are some of the highlights :

- The company had $20.7 billion in cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments.
iPhone and Apple TV deferred revenue in the third quarter was $4.06 billion, up from $2.24 billion in the September quarter a year ago.
- Revenue in the Americas was $3.43 billion in the third quarter, up from $2.68 billion a year ago. Europe revenue was $1.65 billion, up from $1.16 billion a year ago. Apple also got traction in
- Japan with revenue of $365 million, up from $258 million.
- Retail store revenue was $1.44 billion, up from $915 million a year ago.
- Portable revenue was $2.23 billion in the third quarter, up from $1.57 billion a year ago.
- Desktop revenue was $1.37 billion, up from $956 million a year ago.
- Other music related products and services (iTunes) had revenue of $819 million, up from $608 million a year ago, but off 7 percent sequentially.

What a stellar result taking into consideration Apple was on the verge of collapse in 1997. No wonder Jobs health can be such a worrying factor. Apple certainly needs to figure out life after Jobs just like how Microsoft had to deal with life after Gates.

Traffic control takes effect in Beijing to reduce congestions and emissions ahead of the Games

Cars will be banned on alternate days depending on whether their license plates end in odd or even numbers. Beijing hopes to take the city's 2.2 million cars off the roads and reduce emissions by 63 percent for a two-month period during the Olympic Games.

A comparison pictures showing the traffic condition on the same road during rush hour on July 18, 2008 (bottom) and July 20. This certainly had reduced alot of stress on the traffic which had been a serious problem in Beijing for years. With the traffic condition improves, I do hope the air condition improves too.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Old iPhone still fetch a good 2nd resale value

In case if you are not aware, the old iPhone still fetch a decent price. Check out the flyer above and you will see that they are opportunists out there who will pay $199 for a 8GB version and $299 for 16Gb version. You can check out the details of their offers at

Its pretty obvious that they are buying up the old iPhones to feed the gray market. There is a high demand for the original iPhones that don’t require an operator's contract to activate. Techniques for unlocking the original phones for use overseas are already well established, while those for the 3G phones are still under development.

And in the United States, Apple and AT&T have made it harder to buy a 3G phone which the user must sign a contract with AT&T, making those phones harder to export or peddle on the gray market. If you don’t care about or can’t take advantage of faster network speeds, or you don’t want a contract, or you live in China like me, where there are still no authorized iPhone dealers, the original phone will still be the best option.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

LATEST : Jailbreaking your iPhone 3G is ONLINE

Pwnage 2.0 is here! It was officially released a few hours ago. Check it out if you are want to use the software to jailbreak your iPhone.

Here is an instruction guide and video:

Olympic Condom Ads in China

Even consumer products like condom is taking advantage of the advertising exposure during the main event in Beijing. This Olympic condom ads has become rather popular on the internet.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Another Video of Making Pop Corns with your Mobile

I cant verify whether its just another trick pop corns trick. But its quite unlikely that pop corns will pop this way with just mobile phones around it.

Check out my previous blog on the same trick.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Nokia's profits drop by 61%

Nokia reported second quarter earnings today, which saw its net income fall 61 percent to 1.1 billion euros ($1.74 billion), from 2.83 billion euros ($4.49 billion), compared to a year ago despite its market share reaches 40% from 38%.

Nokia blamed among other items the 259 million euro ($411 billion) charges related to its Bochum, Germany-plant closure.

Mobile device volumes rose 21 percent year on year, or 6 percent sequentially, to 122 million units, which Nokia says gives it a total global market share of 40 percent. Average selling price (ASP) fell to 74 euros ($117) from 79 euros ($125) in the first quarter. Nokia blamed some of the fall on the declining dollar, noting that 40 percent of the average selling price decline was caused on exchange rates moving against them.

Emerging markets were once again Nokia's strongest growth areas, especially in Latin America and Asia Pacific, the company's two largest markets. China, usually a strong performer for Nokia, saw sales fall 16 percent quarter on quarter, while North America, still its tiniest market by a long way, saw a 73 percent increase in sales from Q1. China sales drop is expected in view of the many natural disasters that had taken place from snow storm in Feb, earthquake in May to the latest floods that had hit Southern China in June.

The further drop in profits must had also contributed by the reinvestments and maintaining the Services and Software division who has yet to turn a profit. The Services and Software div is spearheading the Ovi and overall internet strategy for Nokia and it will take sometime before we can see a real Ovi deployment though bits and pieces of the Ovi services had been rolled out here and there. Its going to be interesting to see how Ovi will be tastefully integrated and more importantly how it will rival the iPhone, Apple Store, iTunes and MobileMe strategy.

As of now, Nokia may have a more compelling range of devices but moving forward Nokia needs think ahead how to create innovative internet services and not being me-too. It has to also start recognising the innovation behind the whole iPhone device and its powerful ecosystem Apple has created. Nokia will need to also buck up on design to fend off the strong competition coming from the two Korean mobile device companies namely Samsung and LG who has made tremendous progress.

Nokia expects mobile device volumes in the third quarter to increase, and for its share of those volumes to remain at about the same level from the previous quarter. Overall, it believes mobile device volumes in 2008 to grow 10 percent or more from its 2007 estimate of 1.14 billion units.

iPhone's Battery Life Tops

The first iPhone 3G battery test results are in, and it beats the competition with an average of 5 hours and 38 minutes talking non-stop on AT&T's 3G network. The closest competitor—only five minutes short—was the Samsung Instinct.

PC World says that the result is remarkable knowing that AT&T's HSDPA/UMTS network is very power-hungry because voice calls use the more battery-demanding 3G band. Apple's own tests give the new iPhone a 5 hour talk time over 3G, so that's 38 minutes more.

They didn't test the latest iPhone's battery life over 2G networks, which Apple rates at 10 hours (the same as the iPhone classic). Its a pity that the test doesnt include Nokia as it would be great to see how Nokia will fair against the iPhone.

via PC World

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The First Jail Broken iPhone 3G on video

Its not surprising that the new iPhone 3G has been jailbroken as I m sure we all had expected it. The iPhone Dev Team has added a video to their blog showing off the latest version of their upcoming PwnageTool 2.0, along with a video of what they claim is the "world's first" jailbroken iPhone 3G. Check out the video below.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Apple sold 1 million iPhones over the 1st weekend and 10 million downloads from Apple Store

Apple sold 1 million of its new 3G iPhones over the weekend, with iPhone and iPod users also downloading more than 10 million applications from the fledgling App Store . Apple launched the new version of the iPhone in 21 countries on July 11 and had previously took 74 days to sell 1 million of the first version of the iPhone.

This sales figure isnt going to stop here as the number is going to increase further when Apple rolls out the iPhone in 70 countries over the next few months. Piper Jaffray estimates Apple will sell 4.1 million iPhones in the current quarter, and sales could reach 45 million units in 2009.

This is definitely a great start for the iPhone and lets see whether it will hit 45 million units in 2009.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Making of Nokia N82

Ever figured how the idea of Nokia N82 was conceived. Nokia Conversations Video of the day had this video below to tell the story behind the successful creation of N82.

Monday, July 14, 2008

iPhone 3G Twice as Fast

Courtesy of GigaOm, check out the speed of iPhone 3G accessing the internet and YouTube in comparison to the old iPhone. Its twice as fast and I believe this is going to jumpstart the demand of wireless broadband.

Also check out this blog at GigaOm where Om Malik had provided his insights on how the iPhone 3G will jumpstart the demand for wireless broadband.

Louis Vuitton guides you through China

LV had just launched an audio travel guide for 3 major cities in China; Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong. Its perhaps the best travel guide i have ever seen and best of all its narrated by 3 sexy and gorgeous Asian stars namely Gong Li, Shu Qi and Joan Chen. Each of them will guide you in real time through the 3 cities.

Unfortunately its not a free download, each of the travel guide will cost you $17 or Euro 12.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Will-it-blend blends iPhone 3G

Its definitely a good marketing show off though it would not be something i would do in a million years. Seeing how it crushed the poor iPhone, it makes me feel lousy. Wonder what Uncle Steve has got to say about it.

Win an iPhone 3G

If you want a free iPhone 3G, head over to this site for a chance to Win a 16GB iPhone 3G! All you have to do is drop a comment and you may end up with a brand new iPhone 3G. The iPhone giveaway will run until Sunday July 20th at 11:59PM ET. Good luck.

Guy Wash

How would you like to be washed by Hot Women? Another brilliant Axe commercial. Enjoy the clip.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Official Video: AT&T Unboxes The White iPhone 3G

This is the official unboxing video of a white 16G iPhone 3G from AT&T. The video will provide a guide to the various features of the new iPhone 3G. Lookout for the great UI on Apple store. The internet speed on the iPhone 3G is very comparable to a DSL internet speed and you can also talk and access the internet at the same time too with the iPhone.

For a complete review, you can look it up here on Engadget.

Images via ReadWriteWeb.

Romancing with 3G mobile

This is perhaps one of the most romantic 3G ad that i had seen so far. Not sure whether the 3G reception would be good at that height though but still its a hard warmer and its not likely that anybody will say no to the question. A must watch....

Holographic Text Messages on iPhone

Holographic Text Messages will definitely be the killer app rock your world. With 1.5 million views in just a couple weeks, this viral video proves it. The video, by Inha Luke Yoo describes the concept as HoloText Messaging.

The kicker of course, is that this sort of technology isn’t yet available. But this concept video does a great job of showing you what holographic text messages will be like.

Friday, July 11, 2008

1 million iPhones in China

There are 1 million iPhones in China according Kevin Li, an analyst with In-Stat China specializing in telecom research. With only 5.4 units sold as of end of March, 1 million iPhones in China is a suprisingly high figure in view that the phone isnt legally available here.

It was reported 6 months back that there could be an estimated 400,000 unlocked iPhones in China and this figure should have at least doubled since then.

It is interesting to see how the iPhone will be entering China. The best way will be to partner with China Mobile, which means the iPhone will be customised to China Mobile's requirements and subscribers will likely have to sign yearly contract. This will certainly reduce the price of iPhone allowing easy entry for chinese mobile users to own the phone.

With the phone customised for China, I m sure Apple would have to disable the wi-fi feature from the iPhone. With the wi-fi feature removed, I m quite sure the iPhone will be less attractive and this will encourage many to opt for the "non-official" version that i m sure will find its way into China.

I m not too sure whether China Mobile will allow users to access Apple's iTunes Music Store as China Mobile is also promoting the full track music downloads on their portal. Even if its allowed, without wi-fi, the user experience on iTunes will fall short as the existing EDGE network will not support it well.

Its going to be a guessing game how the whole arrangement will be inked out. One thing for sure, iPhone is definitely coming to China and I m quite certain that its going to be real soon as I m sure Apple wants a piece of the mobile action in China.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Nokia N96 interactive site launches

The Nokia N96 which is similar to the N95 has finally launched its own special Flash-based web-tour. It goes into all the details regarding GPS, music playback, and Internet browsing. The Flash demonstration site allows you to see how the menus and other features of the phone will work as well as look at cool features such as watching live TV and video podcasts.

This is supposed to be the new turbocharge replacement for N95 but so far i dont see much of a huge improvement over its predecessor. Perhaps I would have to wait till the phone is out before i make any further critical comments.

When it launches the N96 will have 16GB of storage, a 5 mega pixel camera and 2.8 inch QVGA display for viewing the integrated DVB-H mobile TV on

Below is a short video clip on the features of the new N96 thats scheduled to be launched in the 3rd quarter.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Latest : The First Unboxing of iPhone 3G

Compliments from Portugal, the images below are probably the first iPhone 3G unboxing pictures. While it may look like the 1st generation unboxed iPhone, you can clearly see from the side the term "3G".

Guess we will have to patiently wait for the official launch in China and I expect to see iPhone 3G coming to China before the end of the year. Hopefully these pictures can help hold you over.

Smartphone - Apple is No.3, Nokia is No. 1 but BlackBerry had the largest growth

A new research from Gartner has reported Apple, with just a single iPhone model, is No. 3 among global smartphone vendors for Q1 2008. Apple broke into the "Top 3" in the smartphone market with 1.7 million iPhones sold since it's debut last year. It seems that the iPhone is seen globally as a competent smartphone capable of competing with the best - even with all it's faults.

With increasing awareness among consumers of the smartphone segment and a strong sales push from carriers looking to increase their ARPU (Average Revenue Per User), the smartphone market has highlighted growth in the mobile phone industry. And, the ever increasing smartphone market seems to have helped Apple come in behind smartphone makers Nokia and RIM. Nokia took an astounding 45.2% (14.58 million units) of global smartphone sales, with RIM, makers of the ever-popular push-emailing BlackBerry lineup, garnering 13.4% (4.31 million units) of all smartphone sales.

Compared to the same period last year, smartphone sales grew 29%, with 32.2 million smartphones sold in the first quarter. The growing market didn't just help Apple, Nokia saw a 25.3% growth in smartphone sales in Q1. But, the most remarkable growth numbers belong to RIM - the BlackBerry maker increased smartphone sales by 107.3%.

So, will iPhone 3G be enough to not only meet its goal of moving 10 million units by the end of 2008, but also overtake the BlackBerry as the most sought-after smartphone? Guess we will have the answer pretty soon.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Beijing 2008 - Olympic Figures

The Beijing Olympics will kickoff on August 8 2008 at 8.08pm, a month from today. Here are some interesting stats about the main event :

11,300,000,000 - The expected figures hitting the official Olympic Website

91,000 - The capacity of the Bird's Nest stadium, expected to be sold out everyday

21,600 - The number of media who will be granted official accreditation to the Games

5,000 - The listing price for the Opening Ceremony - the most expensive ticket but this price tag has gone up many folds now thanks to the creation of black market

302 - Total number of gold medals to be awarded

30 - The listing for the cheapest ticket to the Games (softball preliminaries)

Monday, July 7, 2008

Half of Smartphone buyers intend to buy iPhone 3G

Good news for Apple - Investment bank RBC Capital Markets says its own proprietary study has revealed that more than half of consumers who are in the market for a smartphone intend to buy one of the new Apple handsets after its launch on July 11th. The report indicated that 56 percent of those consumers who plan on buying a smartphone in the next 90 days will buy the iPhone 3G.

That's a jump from just 35 percent of consumers who said they anticipated buying one of the new touch-screen handsets back in March when the firm conducted a similar survey before Apple had announced pricing and features. Another 25 percent indicated that they may buy an iPhone 3G "sometime in the future" -- a more than twofold increase in interest from the March study.

The same study showed that purchase interest in the Apple handset is two times greater than that of other brands surveyed. Consumers holding out for a BlackBerry device in the next 90 days made up 23 percent of responds, while Palm garnered interest from just 3 percent. HTC, Nokia, and Samsung each had the interest of 2 percent of respondents to the study, and Motorola just 1 percent.

Consumers routinely cited the iPhone 3G's lower price (67 percent) and faster 3G internet access (63 percent) among the top reasons they plan to choose the Apple handset. 47 percent indicated GPS was a strong selling feature as well, while 35 percent included enterprise email in the list of selling points, and 20 percent check-marked third party applications.

The analyst, who reiterated his Outperform rating on Apple shares, said he continues to expect that the company will ship 14 million iPhones in 2008 and 24 million in 2009.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Social Media in Plain English

Here is a video clip by the Common Craft guys on Social Media in plain and simple english.

Nice Interactive website from Russia vodka with love

From Russia, with love, here is the link to the new Russian Standard Vodka website.

I like the idea that the first level of content is all video based and starts playing automatically when you open up the site. So you get a nice overview of the differente sections and you learn all the basic information about the vodka without reading anything. Its really interactive and this is how website should be rendered in the first place.

Competition when it comes to alchoholic brands are fierce, therefore it's good to see Russian Standard Vodka managed to create something interesting to explore in a crowded space.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

iPhone 3G Video Guide

See whats new with the latest iPhone 3G video guide. A 10 minute video clip that will guide you through all the features of iPhone.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Online Shops in China are required to apply for license from August 2008

According to the e-commerce supervision and management regulation released by Beijing Administration for Industry and Commerce on its website, from August 1, 2008, profit-making online shops from Beijing should get a business license before starting operation.

However, nonprofit online shops that aim at selling or exchanging personal use items do not need to register.

For the convenience of customers, the regulation says e-business managers should publicize information such as their company names, business addresses, online shop names, IP addresses and how to contact them.

This new rule puts an end to easy online profits. Online businesses, particularly those run by small-scale vendors and individuals, have long been exempted from business-related taxes. Though the aim of the new rule is to provide better regulation of operators' behavior and to prevent illegal activities, putting it in practice is going to be difficult as there are tens of thousands of online shops out there. Most are small and will find it hard to justify the transition to an "official" business.

Any firm or individual that fails to abide by the new regulations faces a fine of between 20,000 yuan ($2,900) and 500,000 yuan.

Texting remains the most important feature for consumers

Almost three quarters of mobile phone users cite text messaging capabilities as the most important feature when purchasing a new handset, according to a consumer survey conducted by mobile solutions provider Access Systems Americas and independent research firm Amplitude Research.

Given a list of 19 different mobile features and services, 73 percent of consumers cited texting as the most critical data component, cameras were second with 67 percent, followed by mobile email (63 percent) and web access (61 percent).

Music (34 percent) and video (33 percent) also featured prominently in the poll. Conversely, only 0.5 percent of consumers said battery life plays a role in their phone purchase, with voice activation earning just 0.33 percent.

The Access survey also reports that 39 percent of respondents have added new applications to their handsets, with just over 21 percent adding six or more new apps. Forty-two percent of respondents cited stock tracking applications as the most necessary, followed by sports teams/game trackers (36.6 percent), business applications (10.3 percent), productivity apps (7.5 percent) and utilities (4.8 percent).

Almost 40 percent of respondents said they use their cell phone for "alerts," e.g. traffic, weather and stock market updates. Nearly 30 percent of respondents said they use their phone for banking transactions or to check account balances.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Warner Music joins Nokia's Comes with Music

Nokia announced that Warner Music Group has officially joined the handset giant's Comes With Music initiative. Warner joins fellow major labels Universal Music Group and Sony BMG Music Entertainment in Comes with Music, which enables consumers to purchase a year of unlimited music downloads via mobile handsets bundled with Nokia's Ovi web services platform--while EMI Music remains a holdout. In addition, WMG content will now be available via the Nokia Music Store download and streaming service, which will be expanded to new international markets in the near future.

Comes With Music is expected to launch in the second half of 2008 on a range of Nokia devices in selected territories. With a single purchase, consumers will have access to a year of exploring and downloading the music that they love, and be able to keep all their selections in their permanent library.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Self Destruct BillBoard Ad

A courier service from New Zealand called Deadline Express Couriers decided to demonstrate the timeliness of their deliveries with a bang. For that purpose, a promotional campaign was devised involving a billboard that was placed in the middle of the city. This billboard was fitted with a digital countdown clock rigged to self-destruct at zero hour.

The dramatic explosion, which was witnessed live by thousands of people, was also captured via a live streaming webcam of the countdown linked to Deadline’s homepage. They estimated that a total of 1 million people saw the explosion.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

How much are you willing to pay to lunch with Warren Buffet

A thousand? Ten thousand? One hundred thousand? Its actually $2,110,100. That was the figure that a Chinese investment fund manager won for a chance of a lifetime to have lunch with billionaire Warren Buffett. The bid of $2.1 million is the most expensive charity auction on eBay.

Zhao Danyang, of Hong Kong-based Pure Heart China Growth Investment Fund, won the auction, which ended on Friday evening with a bid of $2,110,100. Zhao and up to seven friends will lunch with Buffett, the 76-year-old chairman of Berkshire Hathaway Inc, at the Smith & Wollensky steakhouse in New York City whenever the two men can schedule it.

The five-day online auction ended on Friday night on eBay Inc's website. After starting at $25,000, a battle broke out between two bidders in the final stretch, with bid prices jumping seven-fold in two hours.

This would have to be the world's most expensive lunch. So much for a happy meal from McDonalds.