MediaFile

Tech wrap: Apple changes course on iAd

The WSJ.com reports that Apple is softening its approach to its iAd mobile advertising service due to the tepid response as it loses ground to Google in the fast-growing mobile-ad market.

Marketers say they have been turned off by iAd’s high price tag as well as Apple’s hard-charging sales tactics and its stringent control over the creative process which has forced Apple to make some changes.

Facebook is probably not the first place that comes to mind when contemplating new career opportunities.

But Monster.com, the career search website, hopes to change that with BeKnown, a professional networking app that allows users to build their professional identities within Facebook.

Staying with Facebook, Bloomberg reports that the social networking site is planning its first push into mobile advertising by the end of March, giving the company a fresh source of revenue ahead of a possible initial public offering, two people with knowledge of the matter said.

Tech wrap: Adobe scraps Flash for mobile browsers

Score a point for Apple. Software maker Adobe scrapped its Flash Player for mobile devices after a mutli-year battle with Apple over the merits of the technology, which is used to view videos and play games on the Web. Take a look back at the legendary tech spat in this blow-by-blow timeline that stretches back to January 2007 when Apple launched its iPhone with a browser that was not compatible with Adobe’s Flash player. The company said in a blog post it plans to focus its future mobile browsing efforts on HTML5, a competing technology that is now universally supported on all major mobile devices.

Online business reviews site Yelp has hired bankers to lead an intitial public offering that could value the company at up to $2 billion, several people familiar with the matter told DealBook’s Evelyn M. Rusli. Goldman Sachs and Citigroup will participate in the offering, which is expected in the first quarter of next year, one of the sources said.

Cisco Systems singaled a turnaround on Wednesday when it raised its forecast revenue and earnings above Wall Street expectations as demand from government and enterprises for its network equipment remained resilient despite global economic troubles. Earlier, the company reported quarterly earnings per share that beat estimates, signaling that efforts to revive growth are beginning to pay off.

Sony: Our tablets are coming… eventually

Sony teased out a few more details about its new Android tablets — codenamed S1 and S2 — and let reporters briefly handle prototypes.

AT&T will be the exclusive U.S. carrier for the S2, a double-screened device that bears a close resemblance to Nintendo’s DS  handheld gaming device. Sony showed off how users could turn it into a book.

Executives stressed that the tablets can connect to other Sony products, such as Blu-Ray players, TVs and PlayStation content, something Apple can’t offer. Like the Sony Ericsson Experia Play AKA, “the PlayStation phone,” the Adobe-Flash enabled tablets will come pre-loaded with the retro game“Crash Bandicoot”.

Adobe CEO on Apple: “Let the games begin”

MEDIA-SUMMIT/The war between Apple and Adobe, which revolves around the use of Adobe’s Flash software on devices like the iPhone and iPad, has simmered down to a low boil, but it certainly hasn’t gone away. Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen turned up at the Web 2.0 conference in San Francisco on Tuesday, and the first question out the gate from the interviewer was about — what else? — Apple.

Although Narayen said the media is doing its part to help fuel the spat, he sounded anything but conciliatory:

“There’s a war happening for developers … Adobe has always been about helping people create content for multiple devices, multiple platforms … Apple and Adobe are on different sides of that point of control.”

Speak, memory! The eternal search for notebooks with flash drives

Good news for us computer geeks! PCs are nearly ready to ditch hard drives for faster, less energy-intensive drives with flash memory, like in a camera or cell phone, according to memory maker Micron, which ought to know. That is exciting news for victims of crashed hard drives and people who always want something new.

“I think it’ll be a story in 2011, and it’ll be pretty good penetration in 2012. But, you know, maybe I’m wrong,” said Mark Durcan, president and chief operating officer of Micron, during the Reuters Global Technology Summit.

Sadly, he may well be right about the last part. The last Micron exec to speak about so-called solid state drives to an appreciatively nerdy Reuters summit was CEO Steve Appleton, who in November 2005 predicted that flash drives would replace hard drives within five years. Actually, he’s still got time, but folks better hurry!

from Summit Notebook:

SanDisk’s Eli sings the Blu-Ray blues

The flash memory business may be suffering its worst slump ever, but SanDisk CEO Eli Harari is carving tombstones for other businesses.

The No.1 endangered technology, Harari said at the Reuters Global Technology Summit on Tuesday, is the Blu-Ray DVD. Because the discs don't work with smartphones, which consumers are increasingly using to watch video, Harari says their days are numbered.

He did not give a time frame for this extinction, though he did note at one point that the average period of time it takes for a new technology to render an existing technology obsolete is five to seven years.