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05 Jun 12 Chrome OS Faces Obstacles in Merging with Android


Over the course of the last several months there have been whispers, some subtle, some not so much, regarding a merger of Android and Chrome, both of the powerhouse Google franchise.  Sundar Pichai, the Senior Vice President at Chrome, has admitted as much, telling CNET  “that his product and that other Google operating system, Android, may some day merge.” Yet, there are many things that would need to happen before a merger could successfully occur.

But, it does look to slowly be occurring with the addition of the Chrome browser as a member of the WebKit browser engine product last summer, and the announcement that Chrome for Android will be released in beta form in a matter of weeks.  That the Android browser finally shares enough code with the Chrome browser diminishes some of the compatibility issues between the two, making the transition more seamless.  Regardless, there are still some problems that must be overcome, outside of the failure of Google’s first attempt at the Chrome OS.

Issues with Chrome OS

Chrome, relatively speaking, is much younger than Android, which Google purchased while Chrome was built in-house.  During the introduction of the new Samsung Chromebook and Chromebox, Google’s vice president of engineering, Linus Upson, said that Google is not working on a Chrome OS tablet.

“We have our hands full in delivering a wonderful experience on desktop and laptop and the Android team have their hands full bringing a great experience on phone and tablet, but the two teams are working together even more closely” said Upson, hinting at a convergences between Chrome and Android operating systems.  Yet, melding together the tablet and the phone is not an easy prospect.  One problem, other than the newness of Chrome OS, that Google must address is the mobile/PC integration which both Apple and Microsoft had to develop two separate operating systems for.

Yet, the payoff for Google, to integrate Chrome into Android, should payoff in spades.  The Chrome browser is either the number one or two most used browser in the world, with the race between Internet Explorer and Chrome growing tighter everyday.  This deeper market integration will, eventually, make it easier for Google to bring its Chrome OS into the mainstream.

The push for mainstream Chrome OS

A lot of this discussion has occurred in the last week since the announcement of the Samsung Chromebox and Chrombook.  The Chromebook, a laptop, comes with significant drawbacks — the biggest being its need to always be online, along with what the editors at CNET call the “general limitations of the Chrome OS,” which make it difficult to recommend.  A potential customer could get a higher quality, more useful laptop for a similar, if not cheaper, price than the $449 Series 5 550 Chromebook that will be offered.

The Chromebox, which comes in at a reasonable $329, is a desktop unit that bears a close resemblance to Apple’s Mac Mini.  For users who spend a good deal of time working on Google’s Cloud, these devices are a sound investment.  Regardless, according to Stephen Shankland of CNET, the Chromebox and Chromebook are still slower than traditional PCs.

Shankland also notes that users should not write off the Chromebook or Chromebox just yet, saying, “the Web is becoming more powerful as a foundation for apps, those apps are taking advantage of the new power, and Chrome OS draws on that broad and deep movement,” and that while Google has been known to “unceremoniously dump some dud projects, Chrome OS looks to me like one of the ones in which Google is investing for the long haul.”

In a recent LA Times article it is written that Google is promoting the computers by claiming that “its line of Web-base computers will not have a ‘messy desktop’ or ‘rolling hills of green.’” The Chromebook and Chromebox are already available on Amazon, and in the coming weeks will be available at Best Buy stores across the nation.  According to Amazon’s website, the Chromebox is currently ranked second in computers and accessories, desktop and the Chromebook is ranked 19th in computer and accessories, laptops, potentially hinting to strong sales figures and a future for the Chrome OS.

In the same vein:

Article source: http://siliconangle.com/blog/2012/06/04/chrome-os-faces-obstacles-in-merging-with-android/

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18 May 12 Samsung Smartphones Represent 40 Percent of All Android Sales: Gartner


Samsung, as Apple and
Nokia are all too aware, is on a hot streak. During the first quarter of 2012,
Samsung’s smartphones accounted for 40 percent of all Android-based phones sold
globally, while no other Android-supporting vendor achieved better than a 10
percent representation, according to a May 16 report from Gartner.

Overall, smartphone sales
rose 45 percent year-over-year, with 144.4 million units shipping during the
first quarter of 2012. Lagging feature phone sales, however, caused the overall
mobile phone market to decline by 2 percent—its first decline since the second
quarter of 2009, according to the firm.

Samsung overtook Nokia for
the No. 1 spot, as IHS
iSuppli said in an early estimate in April
, shipping 86.6 million units
to Nokia’s 83.2 million. Apple followed the pair, with shipments of 33.1
million iPhones, and behind it came ZTE, on shipments of 17.4 million units,
and LG, with 14.7 million units.

BlackBerry maker Research
In Motion finished in seventh place, behind Huawei but ahead of Motorola and
Sony Mobile Communications, respectively.

While Android-running
phones accounted for 56.1 percent of all smartphone sales, Gartner analysts
believe that differentiation is becoming a challenge for manufacturers. Motorola
CEO Sanjay Jha
,
among other executives, has spoken to this point,
saying Motorola plans to release fewer but more differentiated devices. Likewise,
a spokesperson for ATT, at the launch of the HTC
One X
, said a focus on design, a strong camera and the collaboration
with Beats Audio were ways HTC had looked to differentiate that device.

“This is particularly true
for smartphones based on the Android OS, where a strong commoditization trend
is at work and most players are finding it hard to break the [mold],” Anshul Gupta,
a Gartner principal research analyst, said in the report.

“At the high end, hardware
features coupled with applications and services, are helping differentiation,
but this is restricted to major players with intellectual-property assets,”
Gupta added. “However, in the mid- to low-end segment, price is increasingly
becoming the sole differentiator. This will only worsen with the entry of new
players and the dominance of Chinese manufacturers, leading to increased
competition, low profitability and scattered market share.”

Strong Apple iPhone
sales—shipments increased by 96.2 percent year-over-year—came with, thanks to China,
Apple’s No. 2 market behind the United States. China accounted for sales of 5
million iPhones.

Additionally, Gartner added,
“On top of the sales through official carriers’ channels, there was an increase
in transshipments from Hong Kong, where volume has been growing over the past
year, to reach a sell-in of more than 3 million units.”

With China Mobile, the
world’s largest carrier, in talks with Apple to officially
offer the iPhone
, the importance of China to Apple, and the mobile
industry on the whole, is likely to intensify.

Again showing their
impact, China, and the Asia-Pacific region on the whole, were also contributors
to the quarter’s overall lackluster results. While Chinese
New Year generally helps to make the first quarter the strongest in Asia

(again, a boon for the world market, which usually experiences an aggressive
dip after the high of the fourth-quarter Western holidays), a lack of new phone
launches from leading manufacturers caused users in Asia to delay upgrades,
said Gartner, “in the hope of better smartphone deals arriving later in the year.”

Follow me on Twitter: @eWEEK_Michelle.



Article source: http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Mobile-and-Wireless/Samsung-Smartphones-Represent-40-Percent-of-All-Android-Sales-Gartner-431285/

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10 May 12 Focusing on Android, Borqs Well Set for Global Expansion



CUPERTINO, Calif., May 10, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ –
Borqs International Holding Corp (Borqs), a leading global end-to-end Android+ and Cloud software solutions provider, recently announced its expanded global market development strategy. According to the new strategy, the company will be committed to providing customizable, integrated Android+ software platform solutions and end-to-end service platform solutions for worldwide mobile operators, terminal manufacturers and chip manufacturers. This indicates that Borqs, through redefining its position and target markets, is dedicated to becoming a leading global Android+ software and service solution provider catering to the booming mobile internet market around the world. In addition, Borqs reconfirmed its determination to be a major driving force in the innovation and openness of the global mobile internet industry.

Borqs has made great achievements in the Chinese market since its establishment in 2007 through powerful, innovative Research and Development. By joining forces with the Tier one operators in the world, Borqs has developed the first independently secure and manageable basic software platform for smart mobile terminals in China. It has also collaborated with dozens of well-known global terminal manufacturers and commercially launched more than 40 Android terminal products with sales totaling over 4 million units across 15 countries.

With its focus on open, innovative technology development, Borqs is committed to providing customers with leading-edge commercial-grade Android+ software solutions in collaboration with its excellent partners. To date, Borqs has established close partnerships with more than 10 chip manufacturers, including the world’s top five chip manufacturers. In 2010, Borqs helped a well-known global chip manufacturer launch the industry’s first TD-SCDMA single chip SOC (Modem AP) within one year. Borqs also provided a complete reference software solution, dramatically enhancing the competitiveness and popularity of TD-SCDMA Android smart phones. In 2011, Borqs helped another world leading chip manufacturer release the first Android terminal based on its own chip products, realizing a breakthrough for smart phone in the mobile internet industry. It is reported that its terminal products have hit the Indian market and will be available in Europe and Mainland China soon. As a senior executive from this manufacturer commented, “Borqs represents a key growth segment in the mobile eco-system and will continue to provide ground-breaking features for the next generation of mobile devices.”

Through years of growth, Borqs has accumulated a wealth of Android-related experience supporting mobile internet services with the highest users experience at the front device that is powered by a scalable back end cloud-based platform. Such an end to end service platform includes the support for software upgrade, data backup, synchronization and sharing, VOIP (Voice over Internet Protocol), contents push, unified user and device authentication, and presence and instant messaging, as well as a growing number of value added services. At present, Borqs has established strong partnerships with a growing list of telecom operators across Asia and Europe. Remarkably, Borqs has partnered with the most influential full-service telecom operators in the Asia-Pacific region to support rich communication services that seamlessly integrate legacy services with next generation IP-based multi-media services. To enable operators to rapidly expand its new product and service portfolio, the open service platform also support the integration of internet based applications and contents developed by 3rd parties. It has been reported that this technology partnership will potentially address a market of 200 million users in the Asia-Pacific region (excluding China).

“Borqs has been growing consecutively,” stated Mr. Pat Chan, President and CEO of Borqs. “We are committed to becoming the front-runner in the field of end-to-end integrated Android software solutions and confident that we will be able to advance our technology leadership into the global market. Borqs has a world class professional management team, with a proven track record, and excellent execution over the past few years. Adhering to our principles of innovation, openness, partnership, and highest service quality, we will continue to provide the most advanced technologies with the best user experience, thereby helping our customers create the highest value.”

About Borqs

Borqs International Holding Corp, established in September 2007, is a technology company dedicated to providing customizable, integrated Android software platform solutions and end-to-end service platform solutions for the worldwide mobile operators, terminal OEMs, and chip manufacturers. Headquartered in China, the company has also established offices and RD centers in India and China. Borqs is primarily invested by Keytone Ventures, GSR Ventures, Tsinghua Venture Capitals, Norwest Venture Partners, and Intel Capital. It is now an active member of Google/OHA (Open Handset Alliance) and TD Industry Alliance. Please visit
www.borqs.com for more information.

SOURCE Borqs International Holding Corp

Copyright (C) 2012 PR Newswire. All rights reserved

Article source: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/focusing-on-android-borqs-well-set-for-global-expansion-2012-05-10

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