Daily Archives: October 1, 2012


The True Cost Of An iPhone 5: At Least $1,800 – Infographic

So you scraped your pennies together and you’re ready to buy the cheapest iPhone 5 there is: the 16 GB model with a 2-year contract. A pretty good deal, right? $199 for the best smartphone on the planet?

Not so fast. Consider your voice and data plan, which is going to cost you at least $1,440 over two years — and that’s for the absolute rock-bottom plan on AT&T, the cheapest iPhone carrier in the U.S., with pay-as-you-go texting. (AT&T is also the most expensive carrier; its unlimited plan will set you back more than $5,500 over two years.)

All this and other potential costs are broken down in this infographic, created by content marketing firm Avalaunch Media. While the cost estimate is a little prescriptive — who’s to say you’re going to need a case, a car charger, a stereo dock and an armband? — we’d say it’s a good ballpark guess at how much you’ll be shelling out on hidden extras and accoutrements.

If you’re a former iPhone user, you’re going to need Lightning adapters. Even if not, we doubt you’ll make do with just the one Lightning charger. And then there’s the content; only 30% of iPhone users get by with free apps. Chances are strong you’re going to download more.

All in all, we’d say $1,800 is a conservative estimate.

How much have you spent — or will you spend — on your smartphone over the life of its contract? Let us know in the comments below.

Source: Mashable.com, Avalaunch Media

Dempsey, Friedel Among Best Americans To Play in Barclays English Premier League

Dempsey, Friedel among best Americans to play in Barclays Premier League – Premier League News | FOX Sports on MSN.

Where else is there to start but with Clint Dempsey and Brad Friedel? Both men made history this weekend as Tottenham broke a long-time duck and won at Old Trafford for the first time in 23 years. It’s a huge achievement for the club, a vindication of Andre Villas-Boas and most of all, great to have two of the best American players of all time involved.

Make no mistake: this is a massive moment for America. Brad had a superb game and the fact is, when we look back on the best of the Premier League, his name has to be involved. For me, he’s right up there with the greats – van der Saar, Seaman, Schmeichel – and this is another feather in his cap.

Clint is the best outfield player America has produced and sent to this league. When you consider that the list contains men like Claudio Reyna, Joe-Max Moore, Landon Donovan and my colleague Brian McBride, that really is saying something. His 51st goal did what Gary Lineker did for Spurs in 1989 and it will be remembered for just as long.

You could tell what that goal meant to the club: Villas-Boas’ celebration was genuine, and coming away from this Spurs will be full of belief. Also, United come away with a big, big dent. They have huge problems and how they address them could define their season. There’s a lack of speed at the back, they don’t communicate well and they are far too loose. Spurs could have had four on them in the first half and United’s second half fight-back shouldn’t make people forget that.



From Dempsey to Reyna, find out the best US footballers of all-time.

When you lose games like this one, your psyche takes a hit. I’ve been on both sides of the coin. When Newcastle beat United 5-0, I was so proud, and we just felt on top of the world. When we lost to United in 1995-96, I have to be honest: we started to doubt. Losses like these sow seeds of doubt no matter how much you deny it. The great teams come away from both kinds of experiences and dig out the results.

That’s why I think the North London game will have some repercussions. There was a real opportunity for Arsenal to stake a claim here, and a rare coaching mistake by Arsene Wenger cost them dearly. This game may have some of these players – who already have had to deal with Alex Song and Robin van Persie leaving the club –doubting themselves a little bit.

Wenger doesn’t make a lot of mistakes, but why he left out Per Mertesacker I cannot understand. People say the German is not the quickest, and he is not, but I see him as the heir to Tony Adams. Mertesacker is a field general, and he knows that what is important is that you know where your partner is on the field. You don’t have to be the fastest as long as you have awareness. Adams and Steve Bould partnered very well for Arsenal in the golden era and I think Mertesacker and Vermaelen have that same understanding now. But without Mertesacker, time and again, on set-pieces, that awareness was found lacking. Arsenal paid the price.



Review the best images from week six of the Barclays Premier League.

Most damaging of all to Arsenal is the fact that I don’t think Chelsea are even firing on all cylinders, and yet they are top of the league. That’s real credit to Roberto Di Matteo, for sure – but I see this also as a time when Arsenal could have shown they really are a better team, but didn’t.

Look, we talk about the Stokes and the Swanseas as the bread and butter games in this league, but the fact is the Big Four clashes are when your players find out what they are made of. All this October, these teams will be playing each other on FOX Soccer and I think the mental part of this game will be critical. United and Arsenal have to dust themselves off and get on with it.

I want to speak quickly about Liverpool and it’s good to see them get their first win. As I think you’ve been seeing on our show BEING: Liverpool, Brendan Rodgers wants his players to be brave, be proud to play, and to respect the club. At Swansea, he had some space to grow the club; he doesn’t have that at Liverpool, so getting this win is a huge relief. But even in Liverpool’s losses I think you saw glimpses of a style that was attractive and signals that when the team gels, they will be very good. I think he has been wise to stick with Luis Suarez and whatever he said to Raheem Sterling has made that young man just tremendous.



Get unprecedented insider access to Premier League side Liverpool FC.

Last but not least, I’ve heard a lot about my old team and Demba Ba’s goal. It was a handball I think, but you get the rub of the green sometimes, and that’s just how it is. But Ba’s first goal — to me, that’s a candidate for goal of the season right there. It’s right up with Robin van Persie’s goal against Fulham. If anyone’s got any other candidates, please let me know!

And you can do that by following me on Twitter @warrenbarton2 and ask a question to any of us at any time @FOXSoccer. We love to hear from you and we always pick the best questions each week for Stoppage Time on GOALS ON SUNDAY.

We have a massive week coming up: Champions League, Europa League and of course, some very big games in the Premier League. I do hope you will join us and as always, thanks for reading!

Source: Fox Sports/Fox Soccer

Skyfall Video Blog – Underwater Fight Scene

James Bond fans are getting an early taste of Skyfall, the upcoming 23rd installment in the spy film franchise, through a series of YouTube videos.

The latest clip highlights the ins and outs of taping an underwater fight scene with actor Daniel Craig.

“Not only has he got to concentrate on the fight he’s got to concentrate on the acting as well,” says stunt coordinator Gary Powell in the video. “It’s tiring because you’re moving a lot more than you think you are — just lifting your arm. There’s more weight on it because you’re underwater and all that.”

Source: Mashable.com


Luxury Brands And Digital Marketing – Infographic

Infographic: Luxury Brands Love-Hate Relationship With Digital Marketing

Infographic by MDG Advertising

The allure of luxury brands is that they’re ultra-exclusive, while the appeal of digital marketing is that it’s all-inclusive. So how can luxury marketers uphold their exclusivity while striving to address their affluent audience’s desire for all things digital? Fortunately, there are dynamic digital strategies that will allow upscale brands to avoid downgrading their image while leveraging the power of online platforms. MDG Advertising developed this enlightening infographic to show that luxury lines can maintain their value, while adapting to the latest technology.

Source: MDG Advertising

How to Combine Real-World and Social Media Marketing — Performancing

How to Combine Real-World and Social Media Marketing — Performancing.

Believe it or not, real-world, in-person marketing, which may include booths, physical advertising (as in signs or banners), or demonstrations make it easy to tie in social media marketing efforts. By making your social media presence known to potential customers at your in-person event, it is possible to get a more involved online community that will carry on past any marketing events a company may hold.


Giveaways and Perks


During South by Southwest Interactive 2012, American Express had a booth that gave perks to attendees who connected their Twitter account with their American Express account. Those who did received perks, such as statement credits or t-shirts. The booth was constantly full of people waiting for their perk. Other booths at the popular annual conference held in Austin, TX included tweeting about a company or mentioning their custom South by Southwest Interactive hashtag. Attendees has no problem tweeting to receive a free t-shirt or other types of perks.


Signing up for Updates


Promoting your digital newsletter by having a sign-up sheet at your promotional event is a surprising way to get more mailing list subscribers relatively easily. Explaining the benefits of getting on the mailing list, such as coupons, exclusive events, or news updates can provide customers an incentive to write down their contact information.


Put the Information Out There


Sometimes companies may be surprised as how many customers just like their company page or follow them on Twitter just because the information is given to them. Put social media profile URLs on all marketing materials and correspondence, including flyers, brochures, business cards, banners, and even packaging. If a customer genuinely likes a product and wants to learn more about them, they are more likely to connect with them via social media. It may seem too good to be true, but just putting it out there can make a company more successful with their online social media marketing.


Stay Creative


Instead of badgering customers to sign-up for a newsletter, follow a company on Twitter, and like their page on Facebook over and over, think of a way to make it more creative. Give users reasons WHY they should complete an action. Skype at South by Southwest Interactive had another good example of this. When attendees tweeted about the conference and mentioned Skype with a special hashtag, a “Town Crier”, dressed up in American Colonial garb of a traditional town crier, read the tweets out loud in a Colonial accent of an iPad covered up by a leather book cover. The town crier generated a crowd and was a great way to get attention online and in person.




Thinking outside the box with clever, seamless offline and online promotions, along with a great overall design, can help a business stay connected with current and potential customers, no matter the event or time of year.



Kelsey About Kelsey
Kelsey Jones runs her own social media and search marketing business, The Social Robot, where she helps clients grow their online presence. She was voted one of the top 100 marketers of the year by Invesp in 2009 and has worked for Yelp, Run.com, and Bounty Towels. Check her out at The Social Robot and on Twitter @wonderwall7.

Source: Performancing.com


The Impact Of U.S. Real Estate Investors – Infographic

As we already covered in “The $9.2 Billion Impact of 28.1 Million U.S. Real Estate Investors,” the impact of real estate investor on the housing market has been substantial, to say the least, over the past few years. Our Joint BiggerPockets.com / Memphis Invest National Survey of Residential Real Estate Investors outlined a slew of important data points about investor intent has received national press coverage, and has help illustrate the real power of the individual real estate investor.

Not only have they been spending billions of dollars annually on rehabilitating and renovating our neighborhoods, but they have demonstrated their long-term commitment to their investments by signifying their intent to put down large down payments in order to receive unlimited financing of future properties.

Source: Biggerpockets.com, Memphis Invest


The Green Lifestyle vs. The typical Lifestyle – Infographic

OK so as our regular readers know we use the visual news area to talk about topical or reasonably topical (come on we don’t want to make it boring) issues that relate to global finance and we do it in a fun visual way. We then like to see how these issues impact everyday people and see what trends or patterns emerge and how they might impact on the average working person in the UK/US.

We have looked at a number of different topics recently and it looks like a number of different factors are causing more and more middle income family’s to get squeezed financially. Be that the hike in University fees (That College for our many US readers) or the fact families are becoming more reliant on two incomes rather than one or a whole host of other micro reasons (please see our other visual news pieces). The fact is people are struggling more and credit it getting harder to find quickly (Both in the UK and US), hens the recent boom in pawn broking shops and payday loans online.

With wind farms popping up all over the place and electric cars starting to role onto our roads we decided to take a look into what going green can really mean for your wallet. How can we make our money go further so we are not as short at the end of the month and don’t have to really on payday loans etc. If I am honest I personally thought going green would be way way more expensive as such we very nearly did not research the topic. Well it turns out that it’s not. Surprised! I know I was.

Source: Paydayloan.co.uk

How Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Netflix say sorry – MarketWatch

How Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Netflix say sorry – MarketWatch.

By Quentin Fottrell

Since he took the reins from Steve Jobs, Apple CEO Tim Cook has had his every move compared with that of the company’s visionary founder. “What would Steve have done?” many wondered when Apple came under widespread criticism for booting Google Maps off the new iOS in favor of its own, many say inferior, software.



‘We are extremely sorry … and we are doing everything we can to make Maps better.’



Tim Cook, Apple

Though Cook may not be as charismatic as his predecessor, he proved Friday that he is more capable in at least one respect, experts say: apologizing for a blunder. In a letter to users, a Cook conceded that Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL)  Maps app had fallen short of the company’s standards. Put side by side with a similar mea culpa Jobs issued five years earlier, most experts say, Cook’s apology comes across as more sincere. See text of Tim Cook’s letter .

“We are extremely sorry for the frustration this has caused our customers,” Cook writes in his note, referring to complaints about Apple’s Maps app, “and we are doing everything we can to make Maps better.” See full story: Apple apology praised, but stock falls 2%.


Apple CEO Tim Cook takes the stage after the introduction of the iPhone 5 at a Sept. 12 media event in San Francisco.

It’s rare for Apple to apologize, but not unheard-of. In 2007, Steve Jobs apologized to customers for dropping the price of the iPhone to $399 from $599 just two months after its release. “We are doing our best to live up to your high expectations of Apple,” he wrote. Unlike Cook, however, Jobs insisted Apple had done nothing wrong: “I am sure that we are making the correct decision.” As consolation, he offered a $100 store credit to those who had paid an extra $200 for the same phone. Read Steve Jobs’s apology .

Cook’s more empathetic and direct apology has the edge over Jobs’s mea culpa, analysts say. “Cook’s statement was structured more effectively, with the apology front and center,” says Ben Zimmer, a language expert and executive producer of VisualThesaurus.com. Jobs, in contrast, framed his letter to customers noncommittally as “observations and conclusions,” Zimmer says. That said, the Maps debacle is a much bigger PR problem for Apple than the price-point issue was, he says, and the current situation demands a stronger apology. Jobs did show greater contrition in 2010, when the release of the iPhone 4 was dogged by complaints about its antenna.

D10 video: Tim Cook

On the first evening of the D10 conference in June 2012, Apple CEO Tim Cook joined Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher onstage for this wide-ranging interview.

But Cook also goes further by suggesting that customers try alternative products like Google (NASDAQ:GOOG)  Maps, Bing and MapQuest. “Jobs offers no alternative except the opportunity to spend more on Apple products [by issuing a store credit] instead of, say, mailing out a check for the difference,” says language expert Alan M. Perlman, a linguistics consultant and author. Cook says he is “extremely sorry.” Jobs’s phrasing — “We apologize for disappointing some of you” — suggests emotional detachment, Perlman says.

Apologizing can be a minefield, and, if not done right, it can even make matters worse.

On the following pages are five more CEO apologies that had varying degrees of success.

The Magnum Mea Culpa: Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, 2009


Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos holds up new Kindle Fire HD models on Sept. 6 in Santa Monica, Calif.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos threw the book at himself in 2009, when copies of George Orwell’s “1984” and “Animal Farm” mysteriously vanished from people’s Kindle e-readers. Customers were shocked and confused, and the online retailer was accused of banning books. It was, perhaps, unfortunate that the books dealt with themes like censorship and totalitarianism. The truth was less dramatic than that: The books were removed because Amazon didn’t have authorization from the publishers to sell them.

CEO Jeff Bezos posted a message on Amazon’s (NASDAQ:AMZN)  public forum — as if he were just another customer: “Our ‘solution’ to the problem was stupid, thoughtless, and painfully out of line with our principles. It is wholly self-inflicted, and we deserve the criticism we’ve received. We will use the scar tissue from this painful mistake to help make better decisions going forward, ones that match our mission.” See Jeff Bezos’s apology .

Both repentant and humorous, “this apology is clearly the cream of the crop,” Zimmer says.

The Friend-to-Friend Apology: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, 2006


Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg at Harvard University in November 2011.

Back when Facebook only had a few hundred million members, CEO Mark Zuckerberg introduced the “news feed.” Intended to compete with just-launched Twitter’s endless stream of updates, the feature infuriated users, who found it too busy and cluttered. Zuckerberg responded with a lengthy open letter on his blog, admitting full responsibility in his opening sentence: “We really messed this one up.” See Zuckerberg’s apology .

But Zuckerberg’s statement read like an email to a close friend: Self-deprecating and casual, it even applauded his most vociferous detractors. “This may sound silly, but I want to thank all of you who have written in and created groups and protested.” He organized an online chat to discuss Facebook’s (NASDAQ:FB)  new privacy policies and thanked people for taking the time to read his letter. Not everyone was impressed. Christopher Elliott, author of consumer-advice book “Scammed,” says it was “rambling.”

The Unsigned Apology: Sony Online Entertainment, 2011


Kazuo Hirai with predecessor CEO Howard Stringer at a February 2012 news conference in Tokyo.

Some apologies are not signed by a human being at all. In 2011, Sony (NYSE:SNE)  blocked users from playing online games and accessing Netflix and Hulu after hackers compromised more than 100 million records, including 12 million unencrypted credit-card numbers. The breach impacted PlayStation, Sony Online Entertainment and its Qriocity music service. Sony’s May 2 statement began” Dear Valued Sony Online Customer.” And ended: “Sincerely, Sony Online Entertainment LLC.” See Sony’s statement .

Howard Stringer, the company’s CEO, didn’t make a public comment for three days. When he finally did issue a statement, his tone was warmer. “Dear Friends,” he wrote, “I know this has been a frustrating time for all of you. Let me assure you that the resources of this company have been focused on investigating the entire nature and impact of the cyber-attack we’ve all experienced and on fixing it.” See Stringer’s statement .

What the company didn’t acknowledge is that it had failed to protect customers from such an attack, Zimmer says.

The Serial Apology: Research In Motion founder Mike Lazaridis, 2011, and CEO Thorsten Heins, 2012


Research In Motion CEO Thorsten Heins holds up a Blackberry during a January 2012 interview in New York.

The BlackBerry maker (NASDAQ:RIMM)  has repeatedly apologized in the past year. In October 2011, founder and former co-CEO Mike Lazaridis issued a mea culpa to the millions of customers hit with three days of global services outages. In a video clip, he said, “We’ve let many of you down. But let me assure you we are working around the clock to fix this. You expect better from us, and I expect better from us.” See Lazaridis statement .

Lazaridis recognized his role and made it personal, says marketing consultant Evan Carmichael; however, the problems continued.

Fast-forward to 2012: Another apology for problems with BlackBerry service in Europe and Africa on Sept. 21. This time, CEO Thorsten Heins posted a short, dispassionate statement: “We are conducting a full technical analysis of this quality-of-service issue and will report as soon as it concludes. I again want to apologize to those customers who were impacted today.” See Heins’s statement .

Heins didn’t explicitly take responsibility for the problems with the service, Zimmer points out.

The Half-Apology: Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, 2011


Reed Hastings at Allen & Co. conference in Sun Valley, Idaho, in July 2012.

In July 2011, Netflix increased the price of its video-streaming and DVD-rental services. The company (NASDAQ:NFLX)  apologized for not properly communicating its strategy to customers and, in September 2011, announced that it would spin off its DVD-by-mail service under the name Qwikster. Around a million subscribers canceled their accounts in the months after the price hike and split — causing the company to abandon its plan to split the services. (Since then, Netflix has gradually been regaining many of those lost customers.)

CEO Reed Hastings went into damage-control mode. In a 1,160-word blog post on Sept. 18, 2011, titled “An Explanation and Some Reflections,” he apologized for the missteps. “I messed up,” he wrote. “In hindsight, I slid into arrogance based upon past success.” Oddly, he didn’t apologize for pricing increases, which experts say was the big reason customers were upset. Carmichael says Hastings failed to follow one key rule: “Explain what you’re going to do to make sure the problem gets fixed.”

Source: Marketwatch.com

Sheryl Sandberg ‘Disappointed’ and ‘Surprised’ By Facebook IPO Aftermath

Sheryl Sandberg ‘Disappointed’ and ‘Surprised’ By Facebook IPO Aftermath.

Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook‘s chief operating officer, opened up about the company’s difficult IPO for the first time Monday during an interview with CNBC‘s Julie Boorstin.


“We’re obviously disappointed and really surprised by what happened in the IPO,” Sandberg told CNBC in the interview. She also admitted that Facebook’s employees have been “disappointed” to see the company’s stock price plummet.


Sandberg wouldn’t comment on what exactly went wrong with the IPO or who was to blame — there are still pending lawsuits over the IPO — but she did note that Facebook has been more focused since the IPO on introducing new products and looking for ways to monetize.


“I think what we’ve done since the IPO is continue to really focus on building that business,” Sandberg told CNBC. “And I think we’re executing better and better.”


In the months since the IPO, Facebook has rolled out several promising new features intended to boost revenue and appease advertisers and investors alike. In June, the company announced a new advertising exchange to allow businesses to bid on ad spots based on user’s browser histories. Shortly afterwards, Facebook debuted its first mobile advertising unit and recently began testing mobile ads in third party applications. Just last week, Facebook re-introduced a gift giving platform on the site that could turn into a major source of revenue for the company.


During the interview with CNBC, Sandberg revealed the company’s plans to introduce yet another revenue-generating feature: premium services for businesses. While Sandberg didn’t offer much in the way of details, CNBC suggests this could mean better analytics and customer service.


Sandberg’s comments on the IPO echo those of Facebook’s cofounder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, who said the stock’s performance has “obviously been disappointing,” during his first post-IPO interview with TechCrunch in early September.


Facebook’s stock opened above $22 on Monday for the first time in more than a week, but the stock is still well below its IPO price of $38 a share.


Image courtesy of Flickr, World Economic Forum
Source: Mashable.com