Category Archives: Mobile

ChuteManaging photos in your own mobile application or developing a way to extract photos from services like Twitter, Flickr, Instagram, and many other similar services can be time-consuming and probably costly. But for services and companies interested in curating photos from around the Interwebs and displaying similar themed ones on their website or through their mobile application, there needs to be a simpler way.

And that’s where Chute comes into play. In February of this year, the service first launched and became highly touted as a developer-friendly way for applications to basically “curate, manage, and display” media files. To put it simply, as Rip Empson from TechCrunch described it, it’s the Twilio for Photos. It seems that both investors and companies have found that analogy quite appealing to them with many flocking to Chute for assistance with their media displays in their application and/or for their events and shows. Now, after initially launching at the Launch Conference in 2011 and then pivoting slightly from a consumer-facing service to a developer-centric one, before being a member of the Y Combinator family, Chute has certainly hit its stride and is moving forward to making big things happen.

SoFitGet ready America: the 2012 Olympics are about to begin! That’s right, in one week, the Summer Olympics are set to kick off in London, England and it’s attracting a lot of attention, at least from a technology standpoint. Whether it’s about their use about social media for its athletes or how it’s rumored to be the most social in the history of the Olympiad, or anything else, there’s a whole lot going on with this historic event.

But the Olympics are much more than just sports. It’s also about building a better community and to do some charitable good. This year is no different and even the tech community is getting involved  with one of the Olympic’s global events to help promote tolerance, peace, and fitness in the world.

Known as the “Walk A Mile” event, this campaign is supported by the 2012 London Olympics and also the US State Department’s Hours Against Hate tolerance campaign designed to help showcase the potential of young people to change the world. To help promote the “Walk A Mile” event, InterAmerican Gaming, in partnership with Dave Stewart, Rock-it Media, Kiip Rewards, PayPal, and Xtreme Labs, just announced the release of their new fitness mobile application, SoFit.

A screen on a smartphone showing a text message to an AT&T customer, in New York. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)Confession time: I recently decided to upgrade my phone and picked up the iPhone 4S with Verizon Wireless.

As some of you may know, for the past couple years, I had been an Android user, absolutely refusing to upgrade to the iPhone. Why? It wasn’t because of pure hatred of iOS or its applications, but because I wasn’t so sure about whether I really wanted the iPhone. Sure, a lot of people have told me that if I wanted to sample the latest applications that are out on the market, then I needed to be able to be on the iPhone. I suppose that I thought I’d be able to temporarily supplant that need simply by using an iPad, but eventually I gave in and went with the iPhone. But it wasn’t a smooth of transition as one might expect.

The last Android device that I had was the HTC Thunderbolt, which was on Verizon’s 4G network and I really liked. It was somewhat big in size and took some getting used to, but I liked downloading the different apps and was even happier when “new” apps came to Google Play, after spending months or years being available in the Apple store. Nevertheless, I had been experiencing some signal and data issues on my Thunderbolt recently and after being instructed to do a factory reset in the hope that it would resolve the issue (which it didn’t), I was told that I could either have Verizon send me a new Thunderbolt and still be month-to-month on my plan or renew for another two years. Now, normally this wouldn’t be something to write about…I mean, why would you care about my data plan? Well, turns out that because Verizon recently updated their data plans and no longer have unlimited data, I was in a bit of a pickle. You see, it turns out that I’m one of the above-average data users–each month, I’m averaging about 3 GB of data being used. So if I rolled over to Verizon’s new plans, I would be paying a bit more than what I’m currently doing now.

Ice Cream DeliveryOkay, so typically the date is synonymous with bad  luck, witchcraft, and the devil. But, Uber is determined to make it synonymous with it being the day that dozens, if not hundreds, of their customers being delivered delicious ice cream. Why? Because July is also National Ice Cream month. No, it’s a real thing…go ahead, look it up…we’ll wait, but no guarantee that your ice cream won’t melt.

Typically known for being a service that transports people from place to place in style and with exceptional customer service, Uber is pretty creative in their promotions–and sometimes it doesn’t even involve transporting people–it usually involves bringing things to people. Why, during South by Southwest last year, they delivered BBQ sandwiches to folks through the app. It’s more a show about how awesome and service-oriented the company can be and it definitely has an impact–plus it doesn’t hurt that people are downloading the app and will continue to think about using it in the future. So now, in honor of National Ice Cream month, Uber will be delivering ice cream to those who order it through their app–for one day only!

Kees KoolenOver the past few months, super people transporter, Uber, has made some significant expansions as it aims to help the world battle the inefficient private transportation industry and make cab-like services much more enjoyable. It started off in San Francisco and has slowly expanded to other metropolitan cities and locations, including Chicago, New York City, Philadelphia, San Diego, Seattle, Los Angeles, and Washington, DC. The service has also recently moved across the seas to promote their international coverage, coincidentally during the same time as the LeWeb conference, in Paris and now in London. Certainly not bad for a company who has certainly made the general public supportive and appreciative of the company’s work. And one can only assume that Uber will be branching off to other locales in the near future. Just where remains a bit of a mystery, but you can probably bet that as long as there’s an issue about cab drivers purposely not picking you up or rude customer service experiences, then Uber will be right up there moving in to help make your transportation experience much more enjoyable.

In order to help Uber rapidly and efficiently respond to growing demand and expand, this well-funded San Francisco-based startup announced last week that they were bringing on board an experienced partner and new Chief Operating Operator. That person is none other than former CEO Kees Koolen. Mr. Koolen is the company’s answer for this desire to scale a global organization and both CEO Ryan Graves, and founder Travis Kalanick recognize this.  The new COO definitely has a huge task in front of him, but it’s nothing new for the man who “built and grew from a small team into the multibillion world leader of hotel reservations with more than 3,500 people working from more than 70 offices around the world.