Apple iPhone controls over 66% of all mobile web use

In its first detailed look at web market share for cellphones,
a research firm has found that Apple’s iPhone represents a staggering
66.61 percent of mobile traffic while its competitors have only just
gained a foothold.

Net Applications’ February results
show the iPhone operating system having managed over nine times the
usage of its next smartphone competitor, Windows Mobile, which had just
6.91 percent of the traffic measured across tens of thousands of sites.

Other smartphone platforms haven’t fared any better, according to the
metrics. Google’s Android and Symbian were both locked in a tie for
6.15 percent. Research in Motion’s email-centric BlackBerry OS was used
less often at just 2.24 percent and was even outmatched by PalmOS
devices, which represented 2.37 percent of cellular web use last month.

Why the particularly wide gap exists between Apple and its rivals
hasn’t been explained. However, the data backs up AdMob findings which
showed the iPhone getting half of all US smartphone traffic
and a third of smartphone use worldwide during the month before. The
use has previously been credited to a spike in Apple device ownership
after the holidays as well as to the relative strength of the Safari
web browser.

Net Applications February 2009 mobile share
Mobile web market share for February 2009.

Even with such a discrepancy, Net Applications noted that the
achievements of Android and BlackBerry OS are significant; Android
wasn’t even available before October and so gained in four months the
web share that took Symbian years to achieve.

The news may have to placate Apple fans given a fairly stale month in
desktop-class operating systems. Windows has reclaimed a small portion
of its steadily declining share and climbed a fifth of a point to 88.42
percent, while Mac OS X share has backed down from its all-time high in January to 9.61 percent.

And compared to all operating systems, the iPhone still has the same
0.48 percent of the web — making its usage still very small in
comparison to that of the larger computing world.

Daily Tidbits: Doodle 4 Google calling all students

Google announced its “Doodle 4 Google 2009” competition Tuesday. According to the company, all kindergarten through 12th grade U.S. students can design a Google logo based on the theme, “What I wish for the world.” Applications will be accepted until March 31 and the winner’s doodle will be displayed on Google’s homepage on May 21. The winner will receive a $15,000 college scholarship and a $25,000 technology grant for their school. Google will also award a school district $10,000 for the “greatest quality participation.” Student drawings will be evaluated by a panel of independent judges and Google employees.

Video creation service, Animoto, announced Tuesday that in time for Valentine’s Day, users can send video love letters framed in the company’s heart-themed animated page. Users will also be able to combine images from the company’s new themed collections into their videos, which include Valentine’s Day, birthday, travel, nature, and scenes. Animoto’s Valentine’s greeting is free for a 30-second spot, but costs $3 for full-length videos. Continue reading

Google Earth now includes undersea view

AN FRANCISCO, Feb. 3 (UPI) — Google, the California-based search engine giant, has added an undersea view of the world to Google Earth.

The new feature, announced Monday at the California Academy of Science in San Francisco, includes maps of the ocean bottom, photographs and videos of underwater flora and fauna and shipwreck models.

Sylvia Earle, a former chief scientist at the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, once joked that Google Earth should be called “Google Dirt,” because it omitted two-thirds of the planet’s surface. At the launch, she said that Google now provides “a fantastic new rendition of the earth.” Continue reading

Microsoft Web Sandbox Source Now Available Under Apache License 2.0

Microsoft has released more source code under an OSI-approved license: this time it has made the source code for the Web Sandbox runtime available under the Apache 2.0 open source license.

The Web Sandbox project explores how to advance the web platform to improve security, isolation, quality of service and extensibility capabilities for web developers and website users.

Continue reading

Google fakes out Hotmail for Chrome support

Google has added a patch to its latest beta and stable versions of Chrome to make the browser work better with Microsoft’s Hotmail site.

With the patch, Chrome tells Microsoft’s site it’s actually Apple’s Safari browser, sidestepping a compatibility issue that had caused problems using the site.

“While the Hotmail team works on a proper fix, we’re deploying a workaround that changes the user agent string that Google Chrome sends when requesting URLs that end with,” Chrome Product Manager Mark Larson said in a blog announcement. It also fixes a problem sending mail from Yahoo Mail, he said.

The patch is in Chrome, which also fixes a severe security problem.

Matt Cutts, Google’s chief Web spam fighter and a high-profile company blogger, was less delicate about the Hotmail issue. “Normally you think of Web pages being faster to update than client-side software downloads. In this case though, Chrome updates near-weekly, much faster than Hotmail did. Another illustration that velocity and speed of iteration matter,” he said in an online comment about the matter. Continue reading

Internet users worldwide surpass 1 billion in December

McDonalds restaurants and global Internet usage share something in common.

Over 1 billion served within a month.

Global Internet usage reached over 1 billion unique visitors in the month of December, with 41.3 percent coming from the Asia-Pacific region, according to a report released Friday by comScore.

The study looked at Internet users over the age of 15, who accessed the net from their home or work computers in the month of December.

Europe grabbed the next largest slice, with 28 percent of the global Internet audience, followed by the U.S. with an 18.4 percent slice. Continue reading