Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Morning Brief: WSJ updates new Newsstand app, improves video quality; T-Mobile introduces iPhone upgrade program to lure new customers

The Wall Street Journal, which moved it stand-alone app into the Apple Newsstand at the end of last year, today issued an app update to fix bugs associated with the move into the Newsstand. The update also upgrades the quality of the video streaming inside app, raising it to HD quality.

The app has received very high marks from recent reviewers inside the App Store – ignoring those reviewers shocked, shocked that one would have to pay a subscription. The only real complaint, and one that app developers might consider, is that the app still does not give the reader access to commenting and that the app remains fairly slow.

Google, which updated both its iOS version of its Chrome browser and its Google Search app, today issued a minor update to Google+ Local.

The updates are coming a bit slower now as we are in that middle area between iOS introductions. Apple released iOS 6 on September 19 of last year and the release seemed to cause havoc with many apps, especially those using the Adobe DPS. But the updates have been made and now many developers are waiting on WWDC to see what Apple has in store for iOS 7. Many expect that iOS 7 may be a big update of the interface, something that is sure to mean developers will have to once again scramble to make sure their apps are in good working order.

T-Mobile starts selling the iPhone on Friday and it is getting aggressive in its efforts to attract new customers. Today the company announced that is offering new customers a trade-inb program where they can bring their iPhone 4 or 4S to the carrier and exchange it for an iPhone 5 at no cost, and get a $120 credit towards the monthly device fee. The normal price T-Mobile will be charging is $100, plus an additional $20 per month charge for two years.

The biggest obstacle T-Mobile faces remains, however, its network coverage which continues to have huge gaps in it in rural areas.