I know this is going to be unpopular, but I think Facebook have got their Developer Relations working pretty well. Rather than expect developers to pay to fly and stay near them, they’re setting up conferences around the world. That way you know you’re going to get locally relevant content and not pay a few thousand bucks to be told you can’t get access to some of the key technologies because you live in the wrong place.
So it’s been confirmed; #io13 will be yet another free-for-all with the freebie grabbers :( This means I’m now definitely going to give it a skip it in favour of Droidcon Berlin and droidcon London later in the year. Whilst I’ve had some good conversations at #io events I’ve also had a number of ones which left me thinking “OK, this person isn’t really into coding and technology”, whereas at the Droidcons I’ve been to the only time I’ve thought that was talking to some of the people who have stands and are clearly identifiable as sales people (usually wearing a company T-shirt or something similar).
So now people are expecting a Chromebook Pixel and an X-Phone as giveaways at #io13 . If it’s open ticket sales again this year I can see the developer attendee count going down and the freebie hunter count going up. At #io12 I met a guy who guy who said he was getting two of everything because he bought a ticket for himself and one for his son. His son was at college studying English, had no interest in the freebies, but took up the offer of a free trip to San Francisco in return for turning up to pick-up the goodies at the times his Dad told him to.
Some of you may remember that, back at the end of 2010 I decided to sell AndAppStore to the Seavus group who, in turn, launched a “beyond apps” Android store called Soc.io Mall in 2011. In the last couple of days emails have started to go out informing folk that Seavus and Blackberry have established strategic cooperation arrangement to support the Soc.io Mall developers in side Blackberry App World. I’m really happy with the way Seavus have been able to take the project I started and build upon it to help Android developers reach wider and wider audiences, and I hope that the developers who’ve helped to make the continued growth possible understand what they’ve helped build.
Looks like Google have done it again; Completely f’ed up when writing a simple order management system. I’m seeing numerous reports from people who ordered #Nexus4 ’s after me and were told it would arrive in “4-5 weeks” that they’ve received their ‘phones, which my order (made about 3 minutes after the 4th of Dec restock, with a “1-2 week” estimate) is still sitting in “Pending”. Every #IO ticket ordering session for the past couple of years has been a disaster, the initial #Nexus4 seemed to be a road crash, and this time, although you could order, the order execution process seems to be completely screwed, and in traditional Google style, all you have is an email address to get an answer from and, if they deem you worthy, you might actually get a reply.
“Close Account” buttons are unpopular mainly for marketing reasons; They give users an easy way to leave your site, and so your user count goes down and your site looks less popular, but, in many countries, not allowing users to close their account can get you into deep water with privicy issues as well as severely damaging your user count credibility ( no-one trusts user counts at a Hotel California - http://en.
It charges from a Micro-USB connector which is, for Samsung, a huge step in the right direction. The feel of the device reminds me very much of a Xoom. The rubber back is a good touch (I can’t count how many samsung tablets I’ve had slip around in my hands). In terms of setup, it still disappoints me that Android doesn’t show the MAC address when you set up WiFi for the first time.
Closing down my other projects. My role at OUYA is going to be full time so there’ll be little to no time to do anything else.
At #io12 Hugo Barra announced the new Android Platform Development Kit. The PDK was described as helping hardware developers port Jelly Bean to their devices and was said to be available “two to three months before the platform release date”, and that selected hardware partners had been given access to the JB PDK a few weeks before #io12 (around the 30min mark in the video below). Personally I felt it was this years attempt to reassure users their devices would get updates after last years attempt (The 18 month update guarantee) failed so miserably.
One phrase from last nights Amazon.com Kindle launch makes me think they’re going to take over the #Android tablet space and have big consumer support; “…people don’t want gadgets anymore. They want services that improve over time. They want services that improve every day, every week, and every month.” This has been true for a long time. Consumers buy devices from washing machines to TVs because they want it to do something, not because it has the lastest bit of technology from the manufacturer.