All Articles Tagged "apps"
Nowadays, kids are no playing Chutes and Ladders or Candyland, but Playstation and Farmville. Getting their interest can be a challenge. An Atlanta based company has decided to create some fun educational apps with this in mind.
Lucy Holified, the chief executive of Identity Kids LLC, is making a move is this space understanding that apps targeted at African American kids are untapped in the $38 billion apps market. “I believe the timing is right to leverage our unique content to serve a market that has been largely overlooked,” she says.
Holified and her team plan to launch as many as 10 mobile apps this fall that combine education, black facts, and fun that are targeted at black kids.
Some apps I like that can help teach youngsters about black history are the Then and Now Series: Black History by CM Innovations that allow you to view bios and videos of black activists, or Black History in An Hour, which gives you a crash course in black history right from your phone, and especially for smaller kids the Myles & Ayesha- Black Inventors Match Game by Uplift Inc., that plays the match game to link black inventors with the inventions they created.
We have to adjust with the times to keeps kids engaged. Using black history apps seems like a great way for kids to learn about their roots, while having fun.
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A number of reputable media sources are saying that Apple is working on a lower-priced iPhone that could be available as soon as this year. Ideally, this device would be geared towards emerging markets like China where the $600-plus price for the iPhone5 is too far out of reach. However, we wouldn’t be surprised if this option becomes available here as well.
The Wall Street Journal says the iPhone5 typically costs $199 with a two-year contract, $99 for older models. The price is brought down by subsidies from the service provider. In other countries, that subsidy is more scarce, so the Android, for instance, is more affordable and, therefore, the more popular choice.
Last quarter, that WSJ story reports, Apple’s share of the smartphone market fell, while Samsung said it had its best year ever. In a change of course, Apple is looking for ways to maintain its dominance. This isn’t the first time that Apple has floated the idea of a lower-cost phone. The Journal has reported on this rumor for a couple of years. In this latest version, the casing would be made out of plastic instead of aluminum and might incorporate parts from previously-owned phones.
CNET reported just yesterday that iPhones are available at Walmart, contract-free, for $45 per month. The unlocked option is being offered more and more. With more competition, there’s a need to try different strategies. Could low-cost phones be far behind?
There’s also a need for new products. The Chicago Tribune reports that Apple is working with Intel on a watch that will work with the iPhone using Bluetooth and a TV is on the way. One area where Apple and iOS developers are excelling is the app area. According to GigaOm, 40 billion apps have been downloaded since the App Store opened in 2008, two billion in December alone. There are 775,000 apps to choose from. Let us know some of your favorites.
The 2013 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is underway in Las Vegas and already new products and launches have made waves. Companies including Samsung, Lenovo, Intel, Ford, Toyota, and more are at the event, touting new innovations and technologies.
Rumors were rampant about what to expect at CES this year: smart appliances, including TVs and refrigerators; new technologies for mobile phones; and in-car apps and technology. And this year’s press day on Monday, prior to CES’s launch on Tuesday, didn’t disappoint.
Intel hosted a press conference on Monday, showing its roadmap for PCs through 2014. The company highlighted how its “Haswell” chips will make devices thinner and smarter going forward, demonstrated a tabletop touch-screen device, and announced a microprocessor for tablets.
Lenovo also debuted its 27-inch, IdeaCentre Horizon Table PC (at right), with full internet capability and, at the size of a coffee table, space for four people to get their hands on the touch screen. The Los Angeles Times said of the device, “it’s easy to imagine this in your living room.”
Other innovations in the living room included smart TVs. Samsung, Panasonic, and Sony debuted their collections of smart TVs, which bring together live TV, social networks, and personal content such as photos. Additionally, Samsung debuted a refrigerator with a LCD screen and Sony, meanwhile, introduced its water-proof mobile phone, the Xperia Z.
LG is also focusing on appliances at CES 2013, with the debut of a washing machine and refrigerator with touch screens and wireless technology. Chief technology officer Skott Ahn spoke to Forbes about getting consumers to embrace these types of technologies.
“We really try hard,” he said. “Consumers don’t need to understand what they have to do, or what kind of functions really spread over all the devices and what kind of technologies are involved to implement that. We’d like to make our consumers do something they just want to do. Then all the other background steps should be done by all the connectivity we have provided.”
On the automotive side, car companies such as Ford, Toyota, General Motors, Kia, Audi, and more have been coming to CES for several years, touting the in-car technologies they have introduced. This year, Ford and GM are both reaching out to developers and software designers to create apps that will translate to use on the road, the Wall Street Journal reported.
CES will be going strong all week, so look for continuing coverage on tech blogs and outlets. While Apple and Microsoft will not be at the event, there will still be plenty of news out of Las Vegas this week.
Are you a gadget-freak who is paying close attention to CES?
With competition tight as businesses vie for fewer consumer dollars, any extra help black businesses could get in attracting customers was welcomed. Black businesses have been reaching out to clients via text alerts. A new website called Ujamaa Deals focuses on increasing black product sales online and then there was the debut of a special smartphone app that locates black businesses at your location. And as we reported, The Around The Way app allows users to locate the black-owned businesses in their vicinity, so they can do a little shopping in the community.
“The response to the app has been great. The majority of the comments are from people who want the Android version, which we plan to launch this month,” Janine Hausif, CEO of Around The Way App, tells us. It’s currently only available for the iPhone. “The rest of the comments we’ve gotten have been praise and suggestions. Overall it’s been great. It’s very much like people are helping to shape and mold this app and that’s exactly what we want — for people to make it their own.”
According to Hausif, since the app’s launch in November 2012, they have had over 5,500 downloads. The data bank includes more 17,000 black-owned businesses. It is free for businesses to join.
One of those businesses is Therapy Wine Bar in Brooklyn, NY. For Angela Terry, owner of Therapy, adding her store to the app directory was a no-brainer. “I wanted to get more exposure for my business,” says Terry, who was introduced to the app by Hausif and was one of the first business owners to add her business to the app. “It’s a good idea because as a small business owner we need so many free and affordable outlets to advertise on,” she told us via email.
And, said Terry, she did see a boost in business after joining the app. After shopping, more people stopped into the eatery. “We did see an increase in foot traffic as well as customers talking about the app,” she says.
It’s no secret that technology will play an increasingly large role in our lives in 2013, both in terms of the devices we use and the ways we spend our time. What are the goals and challenges that you want to accomplish and/or overcome this year? Most likely, technology can help you achieve them. Here are nine ways how.
Use technology to save time, not waste it.
Yes, playing Angry Birds can waste your time. But there are also tools and apps out there to help you stay organized and increase productivity. Evernote can help you remember everything. Pocket saves articles and links for you to read later. Todoist is a simple to-do list app that offers deadlines, color-coding, and the ability to break down tasks into sub-projects and sub-tasks. Figure out which tool would be most useful to you!
Imagine having access to the more than 1.9 million black-owned businesses in the United States at your fingertips? A company called Around The Way, which is based in New York, teamed up with Washington, D.C.-based mobile-app development firm Clearly Innovative to create a mobile app that will locate black-owned businesses in your area.
The companies say they hope the Around The Way app will support and empower black-owned businesses, especially around this all-important Christmas shopping season. The app, which is available only for the Apple iPhone right now,can be downloaded from the Apple app store.
While the app doesn’t have all of the black-owned businesses in the U.S. yet, it does contain a substantial number and there’s a spot on the app’s website where you can add your business. “The app can locate 17,000 black-owned businesses in all 50 states. Many of the businesses are located in New York City, and other major metropolitan areas,” Eric Hamilton, chief marketing officer and co-founder of Around The Way wrote in an e-mail to The NorthStar News & Analysis.
To increase the number of black-owned businesses in the database, Around The Way is partnering with the New York African American Chamber of Commerce and other black chambers to encourage owners to download the app. By doing this, owners can encourage users to patronize their businesses.
“Around The Way’s sole purpose is to empower black-owned businesses by altering the point of purchase of potential customers… This newly available mobile application allows users to find the closest black-owned business in their vicinity with colorful maps and pinned locations,” Around The Way officials told The NorthStar News & Analysis. “Users can choose from nine-different categories of businesses to locate.” They are: ATM/Bank, Auto, Bakery/Café, Beauty Parlor/Barber Shop, Club/ Lounge, Laundry/Dry Cleaners, Lodging, Restaurants and Shopping.
Apple has 1 million apps in its store and Google Play boasts 700,000 Android apps. But in between Angry Birds and Instagram, what apps and tools can you use to improve your business and boost your career? Here are our top choices.
Evernote is a free app for both mobile devices and desktops that helps you remember everything. Sketch out a prototype on a napkin? Snap a photo with your phone and save it in Evernote. Need to connect your To Do List with your Google Calendar? Cross that off your list. Its cute mascot, an elephant, never lets you forget.
With millions of Americans still unemployed, Facebook has come up with good idea. The social networking site is launching a new app to help its users in the United States hunt for jobs. And Facebook isn´t doing it on its own.
One year ago Facebook partnered with the U.S. Department of Labor, the National Association of Colleges and Employers, the Direct Employers Association and the National Association of State Workforce Agencies to form the Social Jobs Partnership. Facebook and companies that list jobs on Facebook such as Branchout, JobVite and Work4 Labs have compiled more than 1.7 million job postings in the US. This new app, which launched last week, allows Facebook users to search job listings by keyword, type of work, industry and location.
Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis seems impressed with the app. She said in a statement that the app will help “get America back to work.”
Many experts think this could be a move by Facebook to segue into another arena and compete with professional networking site LinkedIn and job hunting sites like Monster.com. But LinkedIn isn’t worried. A company spokesperson told The Times, “We don’t see this as Facebook getting into the professional networking space. Facebook is aggregating jobs from various Facebook apps and putting them in one place.”
Regardless of Facebook’s reasons, if the new app will help people land new jobs then it’s a positive. As we recently reported, African Americans remain the hardest hit in the employment crisis, with 13.4 percent of black workers, or 2.44 million people, still out of work. The Facebook app will probably attract many black job seekers, not only because of the high unemployment stats in the African-American community but also because blacks tend to use the Internet heavily for employment research. Let us know if you plan to or have used this new app. Is it helpful?
There are other job search apps you might want to check out as well, reports Black Careers magazine.
- The Good Job app, allows you to track and save tasks, events, follow ups, interviews, jobs and contacts related to your job search. Cost: $4.99. Available for iPhone.
- The Jobs by CareerBuilder app lets users search its database of nearly two million jobs by keyword, location, company and employment type, among others. You can use your phone’s GPS to identify jobs near you, apply for jobs and receive personalized job recommendations. Cost: Free. Available for iPhone, Android.
- A Labor Stats app from the Bureau of Labor Statistics sends stats on unemployment rate, consumer price index, average hourly earnings and others to your phone. Cost: Free. Available for iPhone, Android.
- The LunchMeet app, used in conjunction with your LinkedIn accont, lets you announce when and where you’re available to meet someone for networking. It’ll also match you up with other networkers in your area. Cost: Free. Available for: iPhone.
- The Resume App lets you build, design and generate a customizable PDF resumé that you can distribute it directly from your phone. Cost: $2.99. Available for iPhone.
- SnapDat Digital Business Cards are great if you need a business card right away and you don’t have any handy, allowing you to create them digitally. Cost: Free. Available for: iPhone.
Do you find yourself checking out online reviews via your smartphone when you are in a store? Well, nearly 70 percent of blacks used a mobile connection for shopping research. According to the “African-American Consumers: Still Vital, Still Growing 2012 Report“ from Nielsen, 64 percent checked out a retailer’s app or mobile site; 61 percent read the product reviews; and 57 percent looked up prices to compare. And 50 percent liked to consult shopping sites or app.
So a set of shopping apps will come in handy this Black Friday.
The BuyOrNot iPhone App is now available at iTunes for free for a limited time. The app allows shoppers to quickly see how an item is rated by other shoppers while they’re in-store and without opening a Web browser. Scan the barcode of a product you’re considering, and BuyOrNot automatically searches for rating scores (e.g. 4 stars out of 5) and the number of ratings at each store that carries the item. The search is conducted across more than 100 online merchants.
Dealnews goes beyond the doorbusters by letting you browse leaked ads and track bargains that might be better-than-Black-Friday discounts. If you’re on a tight budget, Mint might be the app for you. It tracks purchases and helps users see what they’ve spent in the past. Users can check bank account balances and credit cards, and set up alerts when funds run low.
Just like frequent flier miles, ShopKick gives you points for spending that you can put toward new purchases, anything from a Starbucks latte to designer jeans. Okay, so now you have bags full of goodies and a ton of receipts. Paperphobic app lets you snap an photo of your receipts and email, archive and organize them by expense type.
That is everything soup to nuts. Get ready, set, shop!
With more smartphones, tablets and other digital tools available, shoppers have many ways to research and buy gifts online for the holiday season.
A 2012 holiday survey from research firm Ipsos MediaCT and Google found that 51 percent of consumers plan to research products online and then make the purchase in-store. Additionally, 44 percent said they plan to both research and buy online; 17 percent will visit a store first and then purchase online; and 32 percent said they will research online, check out the physical item in stores, and then go back online to buy. Complicated!
Consumers will also use a variety of devices to do this researching and buying, with 65 percent saying they plan to make purchases on their computer, 10 percent on their tablet, and 16 percent via their smartphone. AdWeek posted an infographic with more data.
The National Retail Federation (NRF) also expects more than half of consumers to shop online for holiday gifts, according to its annual holiday consumer spending report. That survey says 51.8 percent of consumers plan to shop online this year, and the NRF expects that the average consumer will spend $749.51 on gifts, décor, cards, and more for the holidays.
And while shoppers are turning to digital for their needs, retailers are responding. A fall 2012 survey conducted by BIGinsight for Shop.org, a division of the NRF, 61.6 percent of online retailers will introduce their holiday marketing promotions by Halloween, up from 52.9 percent who said the same thing in 2011. Of holiday promotions, free shipping is by far the most popular.
Which of these categories do you fall in? Will you shop online or use your smartphone this holiday season?