SketchParty TV is a game that essentially allows a group of people to play a version of Draw Something on a big screen in a party setting, usually with between four and six players. The AirPlay component works by allowing AirPlay Mirroring to turn your Apple TV-connected television or display into the easel for the game. A player gets the word they’re supposed to draw on their iPhone or iPad, and as they draw on the screen, that image appears (without the clue words) on the TV, allowing others to join in and guess.
The app earned high praise from tech bloggers including Federico Viticci and Jim Dalrymple of the Loop nearer to its original launch back in July last year, but overall the response from the general public has been more muted. SketchParty TV’s Braun explained in an interview that to date, SketchParty TV has seen only around 5,000 total downloads, which he says still has probably put the game in front of between 20,000 and 30,000 people, given that it’s meant to be used in a group setting.
Those “aren’t breathtaking numbers,” admits Braun, but the reviews have been positive and this seems to be more an issue of consumer education and getting the feature out there than any limitation of the AirPlay tech itself, Braun suggests.
“Apple has a lot of technology in their platform to encourage developers to support, and AirPlay Mirroring is a smaller piece of the equation than something like, say, iCloud,” he explained. “There’s also a consumer education component involved – right now it seems to be up to the savvy to disseminate the wonders of AirPlay to their friends by word of mouth. Or by showing off games like SketchParty TV.”
Others like Real Racing have embraced the two-screen Mirroring experience, but even the support of a major publisher like EA hasn’t pushed it into the spotlight, and Apple isn’t exactly crowing about the feature either. They advertised that AirPlay Mirroring made it possible to see the same thing on your TV as you’re watching on the iPhone or iPad, but there’s been no formal campaign to promote the fact that gamers can get a true, Wii U style dual-screen gaming experience from current apps with the tools available now.
“It’s been surprising to me that there are many people who have an Apple TV and an iOS device and are aware of the ability to send a video stream over AirPlay, or mirror the device display, but not of the ability to do second-screen to the television and show different content on each,” Braun said about the conspicuous absence of hype around the feature. “Personally, I’d love for Apple to give more love to the Apple TV – whether that means improvements to the current offering or some bold new direction like an actual HDTV set.”
Rumors still prevail that Apple is planning its own HDTV set, despite the fact that this has been rumored for years now. But if it does come true, that would provide a big reason for Apple to push more of its features. The other big question mark that remains centers around whether Apple might just open the Apple TV platform to third-party apps, which might minimize, though not eliminate, the benefits of having an AirPlay-connected game.
Braun says that the addressable market is large for this type of experience, ranging between 10 to 12 million by his calculations, and with plenty of growth potential thanks to the more than 300 million strong iOS user pool. It’s a bigger potential market than that represented by the current combined sales of all major home gaming consoles, in fact, with the provision that Apple needs to blanket more of those with the AirPlay component. One way or another, that’s a market that won’t go ignored for long.
Glympse has been in the news for its deals with the likes of Ford, Mercedes Benz and BMW/Mini to integrate its location-sharing and tracking technology into in-car systems on connected automobiles. Today it’s taking its expansion strategy one step further, with the release of a new software development kit, giving app developers and others the ability to include Glympse-powered location-sharing technology into their services with a few lines of code.
The news comes during a time when social-mapping technology is in the news, with Facebook reportedly in the process of acquiring Waze for up to $1 billion, and Alibaba investing nearly $300 million into AutoNavi in a strategic alliance to develop location-based commerce and other mobile navigation and mapping services.
While Waze has developed a way to collate crowdsourced mapping and traffic data, Glympse doesn’t create the maps themselves — as you can see in the example below, the map data can come from Google, but also Microsoft’s Bing, Open Streetmap and others — but its location-tracking technology effectively lets you create a real-time trail showing your route to a particular location.
The resulting maps are animated routes tracking your movements and other data like the speed at which you’re travelling, travel time, and expected arrival time. A person can also make the data ephemeral (like Snapchat!) by giving it an expiration date for how long it can be accessed look something like this:
Bryan Trussel, CEO and co-founder of Glympse, says that already there are a number of companies approaching Glympse for ways to integrate its technology into new applications — areas that the company itself just doesn’t have the resources to tackle itself right now. One of these involves integration into apps around air travel: tracking where a person is as his plane flies from point A to B, useful for someone waiting to pick up that person from the airport.
Trussel says that the SDK will effectively be a version of the private APIs that Glympse already provides to partners like the car companies and others like Garmin.
It comes at a time when Glympse will continue to expand that partner list, and expand out to other verticals. “We’ve done a major partnership every six months, and we plan more, at the rate of one every couple of months,” he said in an interview. “Some car partners but the majority will be outside the automotive space.” This could also extend to licensing deals for the Glympse technology to start appearing on mobile devices as well. And in fact, there are already a number of companies in non-automotive using Glympse’s technology already. They include Gripwire (app development), PetHub (pet protection) and Runtriz (for hospitality solutions).
Glympse will be offering use of the API free of charge to implementations of 300,000 users or less, in the form of a Lite SDK. That free SDK will include the ability to add Glympse functionality to a mobile app as well as a Map Tool, for developers to create and host a custom Glympse Map. The SDK will let users add GPS and location management, contact integration and viewer permissions as well as the coding for a user interface for users to share location from within the third-party app.
Glympse says that a further, paid commercial SDK is designed for developers and enterprises that expect more than 300,000 monthly active users, or need more support, flexibility with user experience flow, or the ability to create more custom features.
So why the delay of offering an API only now? Trussel says that Glympse has had a lot of incoming requests to use the platform from the beginning, but “we decided not to lead with the platform because we wanted to have it stable and documented. Having an SDK means dealing with support and questions, and we spent our resources working with customers directly and refining platform. Now we are at the point where our partners are using the platform in identical ways so we can handle a variation of people using in a lot of different ways. The timing will be right for us.”
Glympse has to date raised $7.5 million from investors that include Menlo Ventures and Ignition Partners.
Originally posted here: Glympse Launches Its First API To Put Location Sharing Into Any App Or Platform
Jolicloud, which last October pivoted yet again – to become Jolidrive: a “entry point”/dashboard for accessing third party cloud services like Dropbox, Google Drive, Box and also social accounts like Vimeo, Instagram and YouTube — has taken the next obvious step on this new product path and added a search function to flesh out its role as a cloud content (re)discovery service.
With the plethora of different cloud services consumers can now tap into to store stuff getting visibility on all that disparate content via a single dashboard with the ability to search across multiple services makes plenty of sense. The new search function can also be used to throw the net wider, and hunt down new content on social services, be it on YouTube or Instagram or Vimeo — so it’s designed to facilitate cloud content discovery too.
In an email notification sent to subscribers (a part of which is shown below), Jolicloud said search has been one of the “most requested features” for its new offering.
Looking for an innovative designer who is creative in the ability to produce a compelling conversion page or funnel of pages on a new Worpress site. The audience will be people who are inquiring about or have already decided to start a blog. The s…
Category: Design & Multimedia > Other – Design
Type and Budget: Fixed price (Not Sure) Escrow
Time Left: 2 d, 22 h (Ends Apr 19, 2013 14:55 pm ET)
Start Date: Apr 16, 2013
Proposals: 5 (High $411, Low $400, Avg $405)
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Job ID: 40373095
Google on Thursday announced a slew of new features for Google BigQuery, its service for quickly analyzing large amounts of data, to let analytic teams deliver what organizations really need: “actionable and data-driven business insights.” In short, Google has added new capabilities to help businesses work effectively with large amounts of data over a greater range of query and data types.
Here are the three new features Google wants to highlight:
The new Big JOIN feature gives users the ability to produce a result set by merging data from two large tables by a common key: you can skip a data transformation step by simply specifying JOIN operations using SQL. Big Group Aggregations meanwhile significantly increase the number of distinct values that can be grouped in a result set. To use these two new features, all you have to do is add the EACH modifier to JOIN or GROUP BY clauses.
The new TIMESTAMP data type lets you import date and time values in formats familiar to users of databases such as MySQL, while still preserving timezone offset information. There are also new functions for converting these fields into other formats, calculating intervals, and extracting components such as the hour, day of week, and quarter.
Google has also added the ability to add new columns to existing BigQuery tables. To do so, provide a new schema with additional columns using either the “Tables: update” or “Tables: patch” BigQuery API methods.
Last but not least, there are now direct links to individual datasets in the BigQuery Web UI so authorized users can quickly access a dataset, and bookmark it or share it. Email notifications have also been added to inform users when they’ve been given dataset access privileges:
Google explains that these features working in conjunction let you join and perform aggregate analysis on multi-terabyte datasets using SQL-like queries or integrated third-party tools. Without them, the company argues you’d have to initiate complex coding projects, which of course cost both time and money.
In fact, Google is eating its own dog food when it comes to Big Query:
For example, when our App Engine team needed to reconcile app billing and usage information, Big JOIN allowed the team to merge 2TB of usage data with 10GB of configuration data in 60 seconds. Big Group Aggregations enabled them to immediately segment those results by customer.
It’s difficult to argue with figures like that.
See also – Google Cloud Platform gets new storage options, 20% price cut, more European datacenter support and Google debuts four-tiered 24/7 support for its cloud platform services, prices start at $0 to $400 per month
Image credit: Pawel Kryj