This week brings us a new Apps on Tap column - but it has a twist - it is just for the girls. From YouTube how-to-videos to Pinterest style tips, technology has been helping women look their best, while also keeping their household and lives organized. Ladies, here are some go-to apps to make your day more fabulous while on the go. Not to worry if you are a guy - next week we are expecting our turn at bat.
We have snuck in another app however - one that is cross-gender - and about travel. SeatGuru, an online guide to air travel created by TripAdvisor, has unleashed its latest features to make fliers’ experience of finding the best seats and prices even more seamless. While it has always been available through the Web, users can now download the SeatGuru on their Apple devices.
We have one of our Did You Know articles this week. In this case, did you know that Samsung's TouchWiz smartphone and tablet user interface can really crash your mobile device? You probably didn't - and it can be a nasty bug if you end up afflicted. Apparently it strikes at random moments that are related to how often you use the clipboard on your Samsung device to do copy and paste operations. Read on and possibly save yourself a lot of grief.
Meanwhile, BlackBerry continues to get news that isn't exactly positive for the company. Apparently, there will be no native Instagram app for BlackBerry 10 devices. This is a sad state of affairs. Yes, there will be some sort of Web-based capability, but apparently Facebook is not prepared to devote any resources at this point in time to developing a native BB 10 version. This is an example of where a very key application is missing from the BB app portfolio that is not trivial. Adding insult to injury, Mall of America is ditching 11,000 BlackBerry devices in favor of Nokia Lumia 920s. A key reason for the change is that the Lumia runs Windows Phone 8, which easily integrates with Windows back end technologies. It's a definite win for Microsoft as well.
Hewlett-Packard (HP) meanwhile, is hoping to get its own mobile game back into action. HP hasn't exactly had a good run of luck when it comes to the mobile device market. But HP is now plotting a return to mobile by way of the Tegra 4. There are new reports that HP may have its eye on the market it didn't exactly leave on the best of terms, and it's looking to re-enter the fray in grand style with a possible new tablet, powered by the Nvidia "Wayne" Tegra 4 processor and an unexpected operating system: Google's Android. It's definitely a new if likely very misbegotten direction for HP to take. We're not happy about it.
There is a great deal of mobility going on and HP has to get it right. One indication of all this mobility is that mobile data traffic grew 100 percent in 2012. It doubled between Q4 2011 and Q4 2012, according to Ericsson, with quarter over quarter growth of 28 percent between the third and fourth quarters of 2012. That is significant because the overall growth of data is probably lower, on the order of 40 percent annually. In large part, that traffic growth was driven, of course, by an increased number of smartphone devices in use. In the fourth quarter of 2012, mobile broadband subscriptions grew by about 125 million, a 50 percent year-over-year increase.
Another powerful sign of rapid mobile growth is that LTE subscriptions will grow rapidly in 2013 in the Asia-Pacific region. In Q4 2012, the LTE subscription in Asia-Pacific increased by 60.92 percent quarter-on-quarter. As a result, it accounted for about 34.6 million LTE subscribers. Predictions are that the LTE subscription market will continue to grow rapidly in 2013 to reach 72.1 million. It is good to see that LTE growth is taking place outside of North America, where most LTE deployments have taken place to date.
We'll wrap up this week by noting that SecureAuth has been issued two important patents for user authentication methods. The patents are a cornerstone of SecureAuth's technology, which allows enterprises to authenticate user identities using two-factor authentication and enables single-sign-on from any device to any network access point . Integration of the technology will be extended to new products addressing growing enterprise mobile access and identity management challenges due to BYOD.