Thursday, May 30, 2013

Android market share

KI see articles like this  and I have to laugh.  This guy is basically insinuating that profits from the initial sale of the OS or device + OS is where all money comes from.  What is he missing here is the fact that Apple sells hardware (with the OS) and services whereas Google is and always has been an advertising company.  Google uses its OS to reach people with advertising.  They are not concerned with monetizing the OS or their apps which explains why it is all free and available on so many platforms.  It is just a means to an end.  Comparing where the profits are derived for Google and Apple is not a valid comparison since they approach profits in very different ways.  If Google want profits from the apps and OS they surely would not have made it open source and given it away for free.  That is not the point.  Their goal is exactly market share because that means they have access to more people and data to better target ads and those ads drive Googles profits.

For Google Android is an upfront investment with a long term payoff.  Here is an article that shows it is paying off but this is only the tip of the iceberg.  As Google gets is apps into many devices including TV's, Blu-ray players, phones, appliances, etc, it will better understand what people like and don't like person by person.  Then it can use that detailed information to support its advertisers products in a very timely and specific manner.  You don't just get blasted with ads.  Instead you get useful information based on what you want at the time and place.  For instance, Google Maps is the clear winner in maps and navigation.  This means when you are navigating and decide you need fuel, Google can point you to one of its advertisers gas stations.  For the gas station this beats nearly every other kind of ad.  In this scenario you never saw an ad.  It was just timely and helpful information.  This is the ways Google has become the advertising powerhouse it is.

So it baffles me when people (like the clown in the first article) tries to compare Google to Apple in specific profit streams.  Especially when those companies have such different profit streams and business models.  The only similarity they really have is they both make an OS for mobile devices.  We as consumers see them as competitors.  To Google, Apple is not a competitor in their prime business.  To Apple, Google is eating away at market share of their prime business.  Google biggest issue with Apple would be the fact Apple has such a closed ecosystem that Google is too limited and can't get the data or provide the services they need to the depth they need to sell more advertising.  Android has pushed Apple to slowly open this up a bit.  As long as Google can get their apps on iOS and get the rich data they need as well as provide the information flow to the user they don't really care if there are more iOS or Android devices.  For Google it is the total sum that matters.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Weather Station Now Upgraded

I finally broke down and bought the Arduino based weather station wireless sensor receiver.  You can see the project here: .  This device works with the open source software Weather Station Data Logger.  The new WxShield also has a barometric pressure sensor and temperature and humidity sensors so it replaces the base station for a computer interface.  The cost of the WxShield was $135.  It works with all Oregon Scientific sensors.  I use the old base station as a handy display now.

This explains more benefits.

You can see my weather data here:
It looks the same as before.

Reasons to upgrade to the WxShield:
  1. More reliable.  The Oregon Scientific base will stop broadcasting data over USB periodically.  No pattern really but it happens about once a month.  I had it happen 3 times in a month and other times go 3 months without it happening.  Frustrating though.
  2. Ability to install external antenna.  This is a big deal when your PC you use to upload the log the data is in your basement.  The external antenna really extends the range.  This device lets you run a coax to route the antenna outside.
  3. Improved barometric pressure sensor.  Much higher accuracy.
  4. Improved indoor temperature and humidity.  It can also be remotely located.
  5. Its just nerdier.