This column brings you the most interesting and useful business and financial commentary on technology every day. It’s true. You’re welcome!
Link: The Data Don't Lie: iOS Apps Are Better Than Android
“The horse race between the app stores has become a tedious exercise. Apple
(NASDAQ:AAPL) says it has 800,000 apps in the App Store. Google
(NASDAQ:GOOG) Play is about at 800,000 and is likely to hit the million app benchmark before iOS
. But, as our readers so dutifully informed us, they do not really care. App store volume has become a non-story. Quantifying the quality of apps between iOS and Android is a different matter altogether.”
The Next Web
Link: Xbox to 'Unlock' Its Netflix App This Weekend, Granting Access to All Subscribers for a Mere Three Days
“If you felt that it was asinine of Microsoft
(NASDAQ:MSFT) to limit use of the Netflix
(NASDAQ:NFLX) app to only Gold-level subscribers of its Live service, this weekend will offer you some reprieve. According to Major Nelson’s blog
, Microsoft will ‘unlock’ the Netflix app this weekend, granting everyone access to it, provided they are subscribers to the video company.
“Let’s recap: If you buy an Xbox 360, and have a Netflix subscription, you cannot watch Netflix on the device. You must also pay Microsoft $60 per year for Gold membership, to be given access to the Netflix on the console, a streaming video service that they already pay for.”
Link: Amazon's Future Is Not in Selling Stuff--and That's a Good Thing
(NASDAQ:AMZN) wonkish earnings call this week, Chief Financial Officer Tom Szkutak revealed a number that offered a surprising glimpse into the company’s ambitious future — a future where Amazon doesn’t sell stuff. At least not directly.
“In the Q&A with analysts, Szkutak said that a full 39 percent of the ‘product units’ sold on Amazon during the most recent quarter were from third-party sellers, up from 36 percent a year earlier. In other words, more than a third of everything sold on Amazon during the last three months wasn’t sold by Amazon itself, but by someone else selling through Amazon.”
Link: Motorola May Be Looking For Some Help With Its Secretive X-Phone Project
“Rumors that Google and Motorola are quietly working on a new handset known as the X-Phone have been making the rounds for weeks now (thanks in large part to a Wall Street Journal
report from late December), but those rumors may have gotten a big boost in credibility earlier today.
“You see, Motorola was apparently looking for a special someone to fill a job opening of theirs on LinkedIn
(NYSE:LNKD). The position? ‘Sr Director Product Managment [sic], X-Phone.’”
Link: Square Gets Chummy With the Carriers, Selling Its Card Reader at Verizon Stores
(NASDAQ:VZ) will now start selling Square’s card reader
in its retail stores across the country. Though it’s really just a new distribution deal among many, moving closer to carriers puts Square in an ideal spot to target would-be entrepreneurs and small business owners right as they’re making their smartphone purchases.
“Starting Thursday, Verizon stores will sell the device for $9.97, plus new users will get a $10 credit to their account, canceling out even that minimal up-front investment. Since Square only charges by the transaction (2.75 percent) and doesn’t require any minimum number of transactions, it shouldn’t take a very hard sell to convince a small business customer buying a smartphone to try out the reader."
No positions in stocks mentioned.