BlackBerry move to embrace Android may bring unexpected reward

Financial and tech analysts agree the move presents challenges, but little downside


TORONTO (Reuters) - BlackBerry Ltd's move to embrace Android may be aimed at lifting revenue from its software and device management segment, but analysts say it may inadvertently give its device arm a fillip and a new lease on life.

"From the standpoint of marketing, this is a great way for BlackBerry to get visibility. It really doesn't hurt them much, and the upside is high," said Rob Enderle, who runs technology consulting firm Enderle Group.

Mobile Commerce, Payments, NFC/RFID and Big Data

The role of Near Field Communication (NFC) in mobile payments continues to divide the industry

There has been an explosion in mobile payment service launches, joint ventures, and partnerships in the past two to three years.  Merchants are starting to appreciate the benefits that mobile payments can bring, with major chains including Starbucks and McDonald’s launching services on a national basis.

Microsoft opens door to Android, Apple phone apps

Marks a radical shift in strategy for the world's biggest software company


SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Microsoft Corp is making it easier for apps written for rival Google Inc's Android and Apple Inc's iOS systems to work on Windows phones, in a bid to attract users to its unpopular mobile devices, the company's operating systems chief said on Wednesday.

The move marks a radical shift in strategy for the world's biggest software company, which still dominates the personal computer market but has failed to get any real traction on tablets and phones, partly because of a lack of apps.

IBM forges mobile app partnership with China Telecom

State-owned carrier to host IBM's MobileFirst service, allowing corporations to manage iPhone and iPad apps


BEIJING (Reuters) - International Business Machines (IBM) has struck a deal with China Telecom Corp Ltd to offer and manage corporate-grade mobile apps, the latest in a string of tie-ups with Chinese firms.

Under the agreement, state-owned China Telecom will host on its servers IBM's MobileFirst service, which helps corporations manage apps for Apple Inc's iPhone and iPad devices.

U.S. app to help emergency responders communicate in crisis

Intended to supplement and not replace traditional emergency communications


NEW YORK (Reuters) - A mobile app from a law enforcement technology firm could soon allow emergency responders from different agencies to communicate seamlessly with each other in a crisis for the first time, sharing files and conducting impromptu conference calls.

BlueLine Grid's applications target what has long been one of the most vexing challenges facing U.S. law enforcement and emergency responders. Communications breakdowns hampered responses to the Sept. 11, 2001 attack in New York and disasters including 2012’s Superstorm Sandy.

FTC commissioner warns on mobile health-data gathering

Cites mobile health-app study which found that developers collect consumer health data and give it to third-parties


SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Federal Trade Commissioner Julie Brill, speaking in Washington on Wednesday, expressed concern about the way apps on smartphones and mobile devices are siphoning sensitive health data, and how some of that information may then be shared with third parties.

Smartphone suit against Google plays into rivals' hands

Google argued last week the proposed class action should be dismissed


SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - A U.S. consumer lawsuit accusing Google of monopolizing prime real estate on Android smartphones will help mobile rivals like Microsoft make their antitrust case with European regulators should damaging secrets emerge in court.

The suit, filed in California federal court in May by two smartphone consumers, said Google requires handset manufacturers such as Samsung Electronics Co Ltd <005930.KS> to restrict competing apps like Microsoft's Bing search on Android phones, partly by making Google's own apps the default.

Google seen best placed for growth as it transitions to mobile

Google's capital investment budget has topped $17 billion over the past five years


(Reuters) - Google Inc <GOOGL.O> <GOOG.O> is the best placed of any company to benefit from the shift to mobile, increased local advertising and wearables, analysts said after the search giant posted its 18th straight quarter of 20 percent-plus revenue growth.

At least eight brokerages raised their price targets on the stock on Friday by as much as $75, to a high of $745.

Google shares were up 2 percent at $593.37 in early trading on the Nasdaq.

Ride service Uber dials into courier business


App-based ride company Uber will start delivering on its promise of expanding its business into logistics on Tuesday when it launches a trial courier service, Uber Rush, in Manhattan.

"Better, faster, cheaper," is how Uber's (San Francisco, CA, USA) general manager in New York, Josh Mohrer, described the service in a tweet to Reuters. Customers will be able to watch the progress of their packages in its transportation application, much as they can track the progress of the cars they order up on the service.

Apps in car dashboards aim to make vehicles smarter


Searching for that elusive parking spot or a nearby attraction? Forget about consulting your smartphone, just look at the car dashboard.

Whether it is streaming music and listening to audio books, or even ordering a pizza, apps are being loaded into vehicle dashboards as more cars become connected to the Internet.

Only about 10 percent of vehicles have built-in connectivity today, but the number is expected to rise to more than 90 percent by 2020, according to the British consulting firm Machina Research.

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