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Brent

2011 Mobile Excellence Awards Finalists Named

The Mobile Excellence Awards, now in it’s 4th year, honors the best of the best in mobile. The categories of this unique awards show stretch across mobile advertising, mobile gaming, apps, experience, and campaigns.

This years Mobile Excellence Awards are being produced in conjunction with the Verizon Wireless Developer Community.  The awards, like all big west coast awards shows, will be held at a swank location in Los Angeles. This year the show is December 5th at the luxurious Sofitel Hotel in Los Angeles and of course (like last year) we’ll be on hand for all of the festivities.

Comedian, Actress and Saturday Night Live alumnus Cheri Oteri will host and Emcee the event.

“We are very excited to see the range companies and innovators who applied for the Mobile Excellence Awards this year spanning from brands to cross –entertainment  platforms companies.” Says Sarah Miller, Founder & Chair, Mobile Excellence Awards and CEO, Axis Public Relations. ”We are looking forward to honoring innovation and leaders of our industry at the MEAs in December.”

The list of finalists is after the break:

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Just as Blackhat ends, Defcon starts in Las Vegas

We are in Las Vegas Nevada and we have just ended our time at Blackhat, next up it’s  Defcon. We were planning to give you coverage on Blackhat’s mobile track,  however whoever planned it forgot to mention to the speakers that they need to show up because they didn’t.  I was waiting anxiously for the Hacking Androids for Profit by Riley Hassell and Shane Macaulay, however none of them showed up and didn’t even call. I know two people who wont be called to talk next year.

While in the vendors area I was expecting to see a line of vendors showing off mobile products; I was sadly wrong. Two companies however did make an appearance; CORE Security Technologies and BluePoint Security.  Its interesting, because you’ll see below how they “go against each other”. Where as CORE Security does penetration testing by:

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Google to close Android, say bye bye to open source

Yes are favorite way to give reasons as to why we rather use a green robot over a semi eaten fruit is about to be gone. As first reported by Bloomberg Business this morning Google is now telling the OEMs that it’ll no longer allow for customization as its done in the past.

There will be no more willy-nilly tweaks to the software. No more partnerships formed outside of Google’s purview. From now on, companies hoping to receive early access to Google’s most up-to-date software will need approval of their plans. And they will seek that approval from Andy Rubin,

For the development community there are no words yet on how this will affect us however for the likes of HTC, Motorola, Dell, and Samsung no more skins above Android. The most interesting part about this is how split the companies will feel versus consumers. The manufacturers will no doubt not want this to happen as they want to differ from each other with either Sense, Blur and TouchWiz. However consumers now will be able to get Android how it was intended and updates when they should rather then 8+ months later like Samsung does.

Over the past few months, according to several people familiar with the matter, Google has been demanding that Android licensees abide by “non-fragmentation clauses”

that give Google the final say on how they can tweak the Android code

While this has been in the TOC for manufacturers its only now that they will start to force it as seen with Honeycomb’s source which they have not released making it impossible for the smaller manufacturers to build Android tablets since without that source code they can’t build a 3.0 tablet. This along with the recent news that the ever popular PSX4Droid has been pulled from the market place with the reasoning of

“We remove apps from Android Market that violate our policies.”

This is interesting as the Xperia Play about to be released could it be the Sony pressured Google to take it down as it’ll be competing with there suit to buy and play games? Other popular emulators are still in the market as we speak. While we know Google touts Android as being open news coming today like this only reinforces what Nokia’s CEO Stephen Elop said

“The premise of a true open software platform may be where Android started, but it’s not where Android is going,”

With Apples major conference coming up we can already know what about 90% of the topics they’ll talk about now since they can’t talk about how great there own products are without trying to take shots at Google.

I know for one I’m glad Google is doing this as this’ll help the consumers out so they won’t have to be stuck with an old version of Android even though there phones are just a couple months old. Also this might make it so users can buy a phone with say Blur on it and when they first are setting up the phone it’ll ask you if you would like to install it or not. This’ll also help stop Verizon with Bingifying Android phones

Source: Bloomberg Business

-Written on a Motorola Xoom

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About the writer. Brent F is our west coast event reporter. In addition he used to own his own website.  Brent F is the founder of a new app development company.

Amazon App Store turns on its Try it now button

Thats right Google you really have some catching up to do. Amazon which launched its Android Application market less then a week ago is now throwing another blow in the app store battle. The Amazon Apps Store has  enabled there “Test Drive Now” button which as the name suggest lets you try the application before you buy it, which is great with the 15 minute refund window.

This is something major in my opinion as you are not able to refund anything in their market after 15 minuts, so this lets you try it out first on their website and then buy it. In this “trial” you have 30 minutes to play the game, or test the app before it expires which is longer then Google currently gives users and less cumbersome. As of now this is only enabled for certain apps, however there’s no word that they’ll keep it that way and not enable it for all which will take some time to do.

Amazon, is trying to show that not only can it keep up and provide users another alternative, but honestly, they are pushing Google and trying to  provide the users the best way to find and get apps onto your phone.

The user interface is quit easy to muster. You use your mouse instead of a touch screen. Move your mouse  around to control things like direction in a game and then use left click is acting as if you pressing on the screen. There is also a way to rotate the phone with a button in the lower left. The one I tried which was Diner Dash was extremely easy to use with the try it funcionality, however games that require multi-touh will  be interesting to see. This also looks like its flash based so sorry iPhone and iPad users need not apply.

Google the next move is yours to see how you respond to this left hook.

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About the writer. Brent F is our west coast event reporter. In addition he used to own his own website.  Brent F is the founder of a new app development company.

Accessory Spotlight: Trident Cyclops Series Case

First I want to say normally I’m actually completely AGAINST cases on phones as I believe you should be able to care for something if you want it…

Now to the review… I LOVE THIS PRODUCT IF you fit its need… I honestly don’t know why but I love it alot… I was sent a Trident Cyclops case for a Samsung Galaxy S and it just works… Its rugged enough to be able to handle falls and has a built in screen protector that if I had while I was working on a car for Nexus One might have stopped engine oil from getting on screen.

You can drop the phone and nothing will happen to it, I love it. I was told not to try and put it in water to see if makes phone water proof also, so can’t vouch for that. It does look/act/feel bulky but for those who are saying going to an amusement park or working  on cars or in a construction yard or taking a trip to the beach this is what you need.

However once you get around the fact that your phone wont be damaged with this case on, thats where it fails… The screen protection on it doesn’t work all that well until a little user modification happened. We cut it off… The covers for the USB and the Headphone jack are a pain to take off once on. Which is good to stop dirt and things from going in but bad if you are wanting to use it. How the case is, makes it so the sides of the phone are hard to use which makes this case something that a heavy user wouldn’t be interested in but someone who either can’t stand up for a while without falling or doesn’t want to risk the phone being damaged from where they are going or working this is for you. The Cyclops line comes in 7 colors: Blue, Yellow, Black, Red, White, Orange, and sadly Pink.

I personally give my complete ok on this product if you are worried your phone may be damaged where you go, besides that for a heavy user like my self I can’t see me using this. This seems like the first bonafide competition for Otterbox.

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About the writer. Brent F is our west coast event reporter. In addition he used to own his own website.  Brent F is the founder of a new app development company