Monday, June 22, 2009

Flick Fishing First to a Million Paid Downloads

Congrats to iPhone game developer Freeverse, who announced today that over the weekend they sold the millionth copy of their Flick Fishing game, making Flick Fishing the first paid application to reach the one million download milestone.

Flick Fishing allows iPhone and iPod touch users to take a virtual fishing trip with the flick of a wrist.  The game uses the iPhone's accelerometer to recreate a casting motion, then a combination of bait choice and fishing skill helps players land the big fish.

The iPhone OS 3.0 update issued last week for Flick Fishing allows peer-to-peer networking for players to compare their catches while competing in a blackjack style fishing contest. In addition, in-app purchases of a new fishing location and new fish have been made by nearly 10 percent of users since the OS 3.0 update was issued.
"We couldn't be happier that so many people decided to put on their virtual fishing cap and give Flick Fishing a try," said Ian Lynch Smith, president and co-founder of Freeverse. "We're very proud that over one million players have discovered that Flick Fishing is a great way to enjoy summer fun on your iPhone without the pesky flies and mosquitoes."

The game can be purchased from iTunes for $.99 by clicking here.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Interesting iPhone Data from Nielsen

Consumer research firm, The Nielsen Company, released some interesting data on the iPhone this week. The study found:

- As of April 2009, there are 6.4 million active iPhone users in the U.S., up from 2.1 million a year prior.

- 37% watch video on their phone (6x as likely as the typical subscriber).

- There are roughly as many iPhone users 55 and older as there are 13-24. (see chart)

- 98% of iPhone users use the data features of their phone, services that should improve with the enhanced speed promised by the iPhone 3G S.

- 88% use the Internet (4x as likely as the typical subscriber).

- 75% download apps (5x as likely as the typical subscriber).

- 72% use location based services (7x as likely as the typical subscriber).

None of this data is overly surprising but it is good news for all of us in the mobile data market as more and more consumers will be buying iPhones (and other smartphones) so overall usage of applications, mobile web, mcommerce, etc. is about to explode.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Virgin Mobile Brings Pre-pay to Air Cards

Virgin Mobile USA (NYSE: VM) today announced the launch of Broadband2Go, a 3G nationwide wireless Internet service without an annual contract, monthly subscription or activation fee.

Operating on the Sprint Nationwide Network and developed in conjunction with Novatel Wireless (NASDAQ: NVTL), the MC760 Broadband2Go device carries the distinction of being the world's smallest EV-DO Rev. A modem.

"Forget the long-term contracts, monthly bills or desperately seeking a local coffee shop for Wi-Fi. Prepaid mobile broadband is ideal for students, families on the go, freelancers, anyone who needs wireless Internet access...and wants to pay only when they use it," said Bob Stohrer, CMO, Virgin Mobile USA. "We've already demonstrated the benefit of no annual contracts and the ability to tailor spending to individual needs. Broadband2Go is another way to give consumers value, flexibility and convenience."

Like Virgin Mobile USA's mobile phone service, activation is simple and megabytes can be added as often as needed with credit/debit cards or Virgin Mobile Top-Up cards. Top-Up cards can be used to purchase data usage from 100MB to 1 gigabyte on the pay-as-you-go model. A new Broadband2Go-branded Top-Up card for $20, which customers may use to purchase 250MB good for 30 days, translating roughly into 12 hours of web browsing. Other data plans are available at $10, $40 and $60, and any VMU Top-Up card can be used.

Virgin Mobile USA's Broadband2Go requires no activation fee and there are no roaming charges. Customers have a real-time usage meter to monitor and check "Remaining Megabytes of Use" at any time. From the Broadband2Go My Account page, customers are provided with approximate estimates for how many hours of web-browsing, video-viewing and number of emails each plan will generally handle.

The package will be available exclusively at Best Buy Mobile starting in late June for $149.99, and is the first prepaid broadband product Best Buy Mobile is offering.

Capcom Mobile Launches KENKEN for iPhone

Capcom Mobile, a leading developer and publisher of mobile games, and NEXTOY today announced the launch of the hit puzzle game KENKEN on the Apple App Store for the iPhone and iPod touch. KENKEN: Train Your Brain!, features stunning graphics, intuitive controls and 250 new puzzles to challenge puzzle masters and casual gamers alike.

KENKEN has become a certified phenomenon with more that 1.5 million puzzle books sold and regular puzzles appearing in The New York Times, Boston Globe, Detroit Free Press, Readers Digest and on

The brainchild of Japanese Math teacher Tetsuya Miyamoto and made famous by puzzle master Will Shortz, KENKEN requires simple arithmetic calculations and logic to decipher the ingenious puzzles. Translated as "wisdom squared" in Japanese, KENKEN involves addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.

With difficulty levels from beginner to advanced, KENKEN puzzles improve logical thinking, concentration and perseverance.

If you've never played KENKEN it is in the same category as Sudoku but with a different twist. You can try it out online here and see what you think, or you can watch a how to play video here.

KENKEN: Train Your Brain is available from iTunes for $4.99.

Friday, June 5, 2009

iPhone Game Review - Parachute Panic

I was poking around the iTunes AppStore this week and took a $.99 chance on a recently launched game from FDG Entertainment called Parachute Panic.

This fun casual game requires you to successfully land a host of parachutists into passing boats while trying to avoid obstacles such as helicopters, U.F.O´s, sharks and thunder clouds.

The game play is reminiscent of the vintage Nintendo Game & Watch handheld parachute game that I used to love to play back in the early 80's.

The game has very cool hand drawn graphics, smooth animations, catchy music and awesome sound effects. The game has been getting good reviews in the App Store and I have to agree - it is very well done and lots of fun.

Check out a video of the game here.

The only slightly negative comment I will make is that this game is not easy. It takes a little while to get used to the controls and even after mastering the techniques, the action picks up fast and furious. My 7 year old lost interest pretty quickly as it was too hard, but personally, I love the game, and for a buck it's well worth it. Click here to get it now.

Cheaper iPhone Coming Soon?

Apple's Worldwide Developer's Conference kicks off Monday and according to Financial Times, Apple plans to introduce a cheaper version of its popular iPhone as soon as Monday, in a move that could dramatically increase the company’s share of the smart phone market.

Analysts said that the company is likely to introduce either a $149 phone or a $99 phone, down from the current low end of $199.

Citing a firm survey of consumers, Morgan Stanley analyst Kathryn Huberty said that a $50 price cut could increase demand for the phone by 50% and a $100 cut by 100%.

Apple sells about 11% of the world’s smart phones, trailing Nokia at 41% and Research in Motion (Blackberry) at 20%, according to Gartner figures from the first quarter.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Mossberg Reviews the Palm Pre

Walt Mossberg does a great review of the Palm Pre today. If you're considering the device or just curious, you should read it here.

Couple highlights:

"But on June 6, Apple will get a powerful competitor in this category. It's a beautiful, innovative and versatile hand-held computer that's fully in the iPhone's class. It's called the Pre, and it comes from Palm, the company that pioneered the hand-held computer in the 1990s. I've been testing the Pre for a couple of weeks, and I like it a lot, despite some important drawbacks that will have to be remedied."

"All in all, I believe the Pre is a smart, sophisticated product that will have particular appeal for those who want a physical keyboard. It is thoughtfully designed, works well and could give the iPhone and BlackBerry strong competition -- but only if it fixes its app store and can attract third-party developers."

Monday, June 1, 2009

One Thing I Wouldn't Do for a Palm Pre

The much hyped Palm Pre is just days away from release and things are getting downright weird. Check out the picture of this nut who got a huge Palm Pre tattoo on his arm in order to win a free device.
is running the campaign.

Personally, I'm going to wait until the next version of the Pre to get my tattoo.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Billing Revolution Says Mobile Shopping About to Explode

Americans are gradually warming up to the idea of buying things via their mobile phones, particularly young adults and men, found a new study conducted by Harris Interactive for the mobile credit card security firm Billing Revolution.

Harris surveyed 2,029 adults from April 29 to May 1; 1,883 of those surveyed were cell phone owners (93%). Close to half (45%) said they think that shopping via cell phones is “somewhat safe,” though just over a quarter (26%) feel that mobile shopping is completely safe.

Regardless, fewer than half of those surveyed (46%) said they would be willing to shop using their cell phones even if safety was not an issue. But attitudes vary based on age and sex, according to Harris. As with many emerging technology-driven habits, younger adults appear more willing to embrace change; 59% of the 18-34 crowd feels that mobile shopping is somewhat safe, versus just 34% of adults over 55. Also, half of men find the concept of cell phone shopping somewhat safe versus 39% of women.

The relative youth, as well as the male-skewing nature of the potential mobile shopping audience seems to influence the sort of purchases respondents indicated they would be willing to make. Harris found that entertainment is likely to emerge as a key mobile commerce category, as willing mobile shoppers said they would be most interested in purchases such as movie tickets, music, mobile video and games.

Officials at Billing Revolution said the survey results indicated that mobile shopping is poised for growth in the near term, as more and more Americans purchase sophisticated smart phones like Apple’s iPhone and spend more time accessing the Internet via these devices. “There’s clearly a large U.S. population of consumers open to the idea of making purchases via their cell phones,” said Andy Kleitsch, CEO Billing Revolution. “With consumers getting more comfortable navigating the Web from mobile phones, mobile commerce is poised for explosive growth, and consumers are very much leading the charge in this direction.”

Thursday, May 28, 2009

5000 Android Apps

Google's Android Market now offers more than 4,900 applications for smartphones powered by the Android mobile operating system, according to the web services giant's vice president of engineering Vic Gundotra.

Speaking Wednesday at Google's annual I/O developer event in San Francisco, Gundotra said Android users have downloaded an average of more than 40 applications per user, adding that Android smartphones are now second in the U.S. in mobile web browsing, behind Apple's iPhone.

5000 apps is a pretty good number. We (Movaya) are about to launch our first premium app in the Android Market next week so we'll see how that goes.