Goodbye, Yahoo! You would be missed

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If you are from the generation that saw the dial-up Internet age, you must have used one of the many service of a company called Yahoo! Be it chatting away in your favorite chat room or searching for something on the Internet (yeah, people used to do that before Google came along). Yes, that Yahoo! that still feed our nostalgia of the early, humbling days of the Internet, is selling itself.

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Alphabet Surpasses Apple as the World’s Most Valuable Company

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Alphabet Inc., the holding company of Google has unequivocally becomes the World’s Most Valuable Company, surpassing Apple with a market cap difference of $23 billion dollars – Google’s market cap was $558 billion with 8% increase after the company reported its fourth-quarter earnings. Meanwhile, Apple’s market cap sits at a $535 billion.

The company smashed expectations on both ends, bringing in $21.3 billion in revenue and earnings of $8.67 per share. What amazing is that Google, a software company, surpassed the revenue of Apple, a hardware company with crazy margins on its products. This narrative alone speaks a lot of its capabilities and focus on making the best of what they make, which are mostly intangible services.

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#GrandeAffair, an Affair to Remember

 

Toyota, for many, are synonymous with cars. Be it is was your first car that you bought through many hardships or a wedding anniversary gift to your loved one. Toyota has been one of the largest car manufacturer in Pakistan. With its luxury line, Grande launch, Toyota invited bloggers to a day filled of awesome activities that included seeing first hand how cars are manufactured in Toyota’s massive plants.

The day started with us leaving for Toyota’s plant located in hub. The weather that day was pleasant, which is very rare in Karachi. We had enjoyed our ride very much. Upon reaching there, I was astonished to see how big the facilities were. You’d literally get lost inside one of their factories.

We were welcomed into one of the halls where there was a session about Toyota and some numbers about its sales and performance over the years, followed by some really nice advertisements of Toyota. Now, unlike many blogger events, we were promptly served with delicious lunch. After that, came the high time of the day: visit to Toyota’s manufacturing facilities.

We say the car getting manufactured from metal sheets to pieces of arts that you or I would end up driving. I felt like I was inside a documentary of National Geographic Channel called Mega Factories. We experienced the process first-hand. We weren’t allowed to take photographs so I couldn’t save the moments.

After all of that time, we were taken to test drive the newly launched Grande line of cars. The racetrack was shorter than I expected but driving those cars was really, really fun.

We’ve already come to the end of the day by that time so we went for a nice, soothing cruise. We were served with nice food during the cruise and had a lot of fun and mingling with fellow bloggers.

All and all, it was an awesome event as most brands usually don’t do all-day events. I am certainly looking forward to more events from Toyota.

Android One in Pakistan – Hands on with QMobile A1

Android One is a line of consumer electronic devices running Android operating system. Unlike other Android-based smartphones, Google manages the design, development, marketing, and support of these devices whereas the original equipment manufacturers (OEM) are responsible for manufacturing them.

Cherry on top is the near-stock Android experience the smartphones running Android One get. With minimum (or no) bloatware and OEM modification to the OS, you get to use Android the way it is meant to be used.

With Android One we set the bar to be a great software experience and a great device. We really want to bring in a whole new set of people who have never tried a smartphone before.

Sundar Pichai, Senior Vice President of Products, Google.

Android One was introduced in Google I/O 2014 with smartphones starting to ship from September 2014. Now there are dozens of manufacturers in India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Indonesia, the Philippines, Sri Lanka and other South Asian countries. A couple of days ago, Google, with collaboration of QMobile, launched the first Android One phone in Pakistan, QMobile A1.

I’ve been a fan of stock Android myself and thus I own a Nexus phone, tablet(s), and a player. When I heard about Android One heading to Pakistan, I decided to jump the wagon and buy a QMobile phone to try out the software in lower specs device. Now, I’ve only used the phone for around 8 hours and these are my initial thoughts.

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Windows 10 Will Run Android and iOS Apps

Windows 10 will run ios and android apps

Have you been a proud owner of Nokia Lumia? Do you love its apparent build quality, design aesthetics, and killer camera? You very well be but all of these bells and whistles don’t seem to matter when your friends with an Android device or iPhone can flaunt an awesome game or a useful application that just isn’t available on Windows Store yet. If you think that way, you’re not alone. App selection is a major problem faced by manufacturers wanting to enter the mobile world. Though, Android has arguably taken over the world of mobile OS with over 80% of market share, iOS still holds its ground in the global market. Both of these ecosystems have a combined market share of over 93%. That doesn’t leave much for other players in this game, including Microsoft.

Infographic: Smartphone Duopoly Pushes Competition to the Fringes | Statista

Source: Statistica

For Windows Mobile, it goes something like this:
Windows Phone app selection problem

This is why Microsoft was largely unable to get more developers on board for its platform. Sure, you’d find almost all top-tier apps on Windows Mobile, but below that level, it’s a different story altogether. Many apps either don’t have a presence on Windows Mobile or they don’t update it as much as their Android and iOS counterparts.

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The Internet of Things – Possibilities and Downside

Internet-of-things “Good Morning, sir! I’ve regulated the temperature to your liking. You can have your orange juice now,” your refrigerator tells you as you move towards it for your morning juice. “I took the liberty to check your Google Calendar and there’s a party on for day after tomorrow. Given that Sebastian and Elina accepted the invitation, I’ve placed an order for 3 lbs of meat for steaks as you prefer a steak party with the two of them. Moreover, you drank the last can of Coke last night so I’ve placed the order for that, too. And don’t worry, I’ve notified the supermarket to deliver the goods after 7 PM as you’re home by that time.” You nod along having that glass of orange juice. You then put it in the sink and walk towards the bathroom for a brush and a shower. There, you find that the bath has already been prepared by your bathtub and the temperature is just perfect according to the weather your bathtub found out assessing the latest weather forecast. While you’re brushing your teeth, the mirror in the bathroom comes to life and shows you a summarized view of your Facebook news feed, Twitter timeline, and news from the sources you prefer, thanks to Google web history it keeps of you. In case you are wondering, this is not a day out of the life of Tony Stark in the next Iron Man movie, or an excerpt from a Sci-Fi novel I’m writing these days. This could be our world in the next ten years from now. Lo and behold the INTERNET OF THINGS.  Continue reading

Facebook Acquires WhatsApp for $16 Billion

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The popular mobile messaging service, WhatsApp, gets acquired by Facebook for a whopping $16 billion. WhatsApp, over the course of past few years, has become the most popular service to send text and voice-based messages over the Internet. The messaging volume of WhatsApp has reached the SMS volume of the entire global telecom industry.

Facebook issued an official post yesterday confirming the acquisition of WhatsApp. Mark Zuckerberg, in his Facebook post, said

WhatsApp had every option in the world so I’m thrilled that they chose to work with us. I’m looking forward to what Facebook and WhatsApp can do together, and to developing great new mobile services that give people even more options for connecting. I’ve also known Jan for a long time, and I know that we both share the vision of making the world more open and connected. I’m particularly happy that Jan has agreed to join the Facebook board and partner with me to shape Facebook’s future as well as WhatsApp’s

This acquisition news created rumors about WhatsApp Messenger getting some sort of advertisement for its service. These rumors were soon abolished by Jan Koum, WhatsApp co-founder and CEO. In an official blog post, Koum wrote

Here’s what will change for you, our users: nothing.

Furthermore, he added,

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