T-Mobile CEO John Legere recently created a social media storm after his company sent out emails urging BlackBerry users to switch to the iPhone 5s. The backlash caused BB CEO John Chen to pen a blog post condemning Legere for not speaking to him before launching a "clearly inappropriate and ill-conceived marketing promotion." How did T-Mobile respond? By offering BlackBerry users $250 if they trade-in their current device for a new model:
"Starting this Friday, we’re offering $200 credit toward a new device when you trade in your current BlackBerry and upgrade to one of the latest, greatest devices. Purchase any device we offer at T-Mobile. It’s that simple. Bring in your old, working BlackBerry and we’ll give you $200 toward a new BlackBerry or any of our other state-of-the-art smartphones.i In addition, for those existing T-Mobile BlackBerry customers trading-in and choosing a new BlackBerry Q10 or Z10, we’re offering an ADDITIONAL $50 off the purchase price of that new BlackBerry. These offers will be available for a limited time.
Starting Sunday, February 16, through Saturday, February 22, Best Buy will be discounting all iPhone models by $50. This means Best Buy shoppers will be able to nab an iPhone 5 for free, an iPhone 5c for $50 or the iPhone 5s for only $150, when they sign up for a new two-year agreement. The sale also includes all three major carriers AT&T, Sprint, or Verizon Wireless.
Customers can also receive a $50 gift card if they they reserve an iPhone at a Best Buy retail location, Best Buy Mobile specialty store or at BestBuy.com before February 15th.
Here's a quick look at some of the noteworthy apps and games not named Flappy Bird that were released to the Apple App Store this week (02/09/14 to 02/15/14). Max Axe is Apple's Free App of the Week. It will be free until Thursday, February 20, 2014.
OMG: TD! looks a lot like one of those games you see on your Facebook feed or advertised on another game. The type of game you download only to find out it is virtually unplayable because of in-app purchases, or that you have to wait 24 hours to build one item, but it's actually a fun tower defense title with plenty of replay value.
The game's turrets are all modeled after Greek gods like Zeus and Ares, and the object is to stop waves of Titans and their armies from destroying your temple. Currently (Version 1.0.4) there are 20 levels and six bonus levels. Each level has a Normal mode, Challenge mode and Frenzy mode giving you plenty of different scenarios to complete. The game also includes heroes (1 free and 5 available as IAPs), four special abilities and nine gods to use as your defense. Each of the heroes and gods can also be upgraded with souls you collect from your fallen enemies, and each features their own special abilities and strengths.
BlackBerry has begun rolling out BBM Voice and Channels, plus other new features, to iOS and Android devices today. BBM Voice simply allows users to make free voice calls to their contacts over a Wi-Fi or data connection.
Channels is a way for users to discuss a variety of topics, like sports and fashion, with other BBM customers without the need to share personal info or add them to their contacts. Users can easily set up their own personal Channels, moderate them and schedule chat times.
In a note to investors on Monday, Raymond James analyst Tavis McCourt indicated that although Apple's dominance in the mobile phone market increased even further, taking a whopping 87.4% of the total industry profits, the growth of the market itself is markedly slowing down.
According to the report, Apple took 87.4% of the profits while Samsung claimed 32.2%. The fact that so many other vendors in the industry lost money allowed Apple and Samsung to account for over 100% of the industry's earnings in the Q4 2013. Apple and Samsung accounted for 77.8% and 26.1% of the mobile phone industry's profits in Q4 of the previous year. Although these two companies
Sometimes the most simple tweaks are the best, especially if they eliminate annoying warnings that pop up on your display when you're playing games or doing something important on your phone. Some people may consider the Low Battery warning on their iPhone a necessity, but a lot of iOS users can live without it. Luckily there is a new jailbreak tweak for people in the latter group.
NoLowPowerAlert eliminates the low power alert that appears on your device when your battery drops to 10 or 20 percent. The tweak doesn't feature any settings to configure and instantly disables the warning once installed.
The famous crappy bird who became an internet and App Store phenomenon has found a second life on eBay. As you probably already know, Flappy Bird developer Dong Nguyen, mysteriously pulled the popular game from the Apple App Store and Google Play on Sunday, and now it's selling for thousands of dollars on eBay.
There are multiple iOS and Android devices with Flappy Bird installed on them listed on eBay for upwards of $50,000. One auction by a user named pindrus reached $99,900 in bids before eBay pulled the plug. Keep in mind, just like the hilarious Flappy Bird App Store customer reviews, most of these listings and bids are probably fake.
The biggest Apple App Store news of the week has to be EA's mishandling of the popular Dungeon Keeper franchise. The publisher's free-to-play remake has been lambasted for being a money grabbing micro-transaction disaster. Fans of the original title are upset that the game requires wait times of up to 24 hours to mine just one tile, and claim you can't enjoy it without spending money on in-app purchases. It was also recently discovered that users are not able to give the game less than a 5-star rating on the Google Play store. The hate for the game has grown so large that it has even spawned responses from popular vloggers like boogie2988 aka Francis.
EA has responded to all the criticisms saying "people are going to be very protective" of remakes, and that they only implemented their Google Play rating system to get feedback from users so they can improve the game.
"I think any time you re-make anything that is much beloved and has a great sense of nostalgia for people--be it a game, a movie, or whatever--people are going to be very protective of it. They have fond memories of it" said EA Mythic senior producer Jeff Skalski. "We, as gamers, have our own fond memories of it. Our intention with the mobile version was to give as many people as possible a taste of that original Dungeon Keeper experience, and for some people, that’s not the way they want to re-visit the franchise."
Competition between wireless carriers gets hotter every day, and now AT&T has rolled out brand new Mobile Share Value Plans for families. Both existing customers and new subscribers are eligible for the plans, which can save AT&T customers on older plans significant coin. Of course, those who still have unlimited data will need to abandon this privilege to switch plans.
Basically, for any Mobile Share Value Plan with a 10GB or larger shared data bucket, each iPhone on the plan is only $15. This means 10GB with four smartphones clocks a monthly cost of $160. Besides sharing the data among devices, personal hotspot tethering is included along with unlimited voice calling and text messaging.