The war for your handheld device

With the news that Priceline is buying OpenTable for a whopping $2.6 billion in cash, Jim Cramer explains in the video below how this fits into the war for your handheld device. Apps like OpenTable with its huge user base are incredibly powerful, and for Priceline it fits in beautifully following last year’s acquisition of Kayak. Now the next obvious step when you’re booking travel is making restaurant reservations.

This consolidation is very interesting and we’ll see how companies like Google respond. Google owns Zagat.

Top Mobile Gaming Apps

With the advancement in power and speeds available in mobile phones in recent years, especially with the introduction of smartphones, phones have gone from devices allowing you make and receive phone calls and messages to smaller, more mobile computers. There is almost nothing that you are unable to do on your cell phone that you can do on your laptop these days, and this has led to a massive amount of apps, games and mobile websites for you to work and relax on the go. Our favourite ways of relaxing on your mobile device are listed below in no particular order.

Flappy Bird

Although this game has been pulled by its creator in recent times due to “it destroyed my simple life” as Nguyen Ha Dong said on Twitter, it is a fantastically addictive game that sees players have to tap the screen to flap the wings of their bird to navigate through the gaps in the Mario-esque tubes. The game was downloaded more than 50 million times from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store before being pulled and it has spawned numerous copied versions, so those new to the game can still try a version of it.

The joy of the game is that simple to pick up and play, but frustrating to master and get any sort of rhythm and, as such, high scoring going. Despite this, it is still a game I’m struggling to put down on my commute to work!

Angry Birds

Another bird featured game that has gained massive popularity since its creation and release late in 2009 is Angry Birds. It has spread from the iPhone to all smartphones and can be played in your browser too, with a film being released in 2016. The game, and its myriad of sequels, have been downloaded over two billion times and have been described as “the largest mobile app success the world has seen so far”.

The premise, again, is simple in that you must fling your angry birds from a slingshot to destroy buildings and the evil pigs on the battlefield. The fewer birds used, the higher your score. It is another devilishly simple and massively addictive game that cannot be put down once started.

Gambling Apps

As a massive online gaming junkie, I regularly play poker and bingo as well as casino and slot games in my free time on my laptop in the evenings and at weekends. Thanks to the speeds of both smartphones and mobile connections increasing in recent years it is now possible to play all of these games on your mobile device while on the go as long as you have stable connection.

There are many different versions of mobile apps and specifically designed mobile friendly websites available for all aspects of online gaming. Of all the games that you are able to play, I love the ability to play free online bingo games at Butlers on my mobile devices as the quick games allow several games while commuting, although I do switch it up on longer journeys with either poker or a long session of online slot games played on my iPhone.

Candy Crush

After being released in early 2012 on Facebook, it did not take long for this simple game of connecting three of the same candy together to release them from the board to help complete a set task to migrate to smartphones and become an even bigger worldwide phenomenon. It could even be up to get listed on the New York Stock Exchange!

As of the end of last year, Candy Crush has been downloaded more than half a billion times and it’s Facebook page has more than 61 million likes. Everyone is playing it and it is certainly as addictive and challenging, infuriatingly so, as the other games that fill my commute with a combination of fist pumps and expletives! If none of these tickle your fancy try Weather Doodle!

Selling products on Twitter?

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Here’s an interesting article, as Twitter is working with the innovative Stripe payment service to make it easy for people and companies to sell things through Twitter.

It will be interesting to see how this evolves and whether it will affect the user experience on Twitter in a bad way. I guess anyone who send sout to many “buy this” tweets can risk losing followers. The game is changing . . .

Mobile apps aren’t an easy road to riches

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Do you realize that there are more than a million mobile apps in the Apple and Google app stores? How many fo them do you think end up being huge financial successes for their developers? That figure is less than one percent according to a recent study. Huge hits like Smapchat gets tons of buzz, and naturally that gets programmers and entrepreneurs excited, but the odds of success are much lower than many would expect.

All of this makes sense of course. There are many areas in the app universe that are very mature these days, like productivity apps and dating apps. Then you have tons of apps for successful online services, news feeds and games. The options are practically unlimited. If you want to play Online Bingo Games Get £40, Spend £10 | William Hill Bingo you now have app options along with web options. Consumers have so many options now to be enterained by apps. This crowded space makes things very difficult for app developers to break through.

In order to gain success, several thresholds need to be met, with creativity and originality being at the top of the list. But many apps actually meet that standard as every aspect of our lives are being analyzed to see if they can be made easier or more fun through an app. This of course is a very healthy process and leads to a ton of innovation.

But marketing is also critical. Sure, some apps just explode like wildfire as soon as they are released. And it helps to have connections to influential angels who can turbocharge a product just by sending out a tweet. But if you don’t have a Kevin Rose involved, then you need to think long and hard about your marketing plan. Some companies budget serious dollars for the tech development but then hardly have a budget for marketing. In many cases that is a recipe for failure.

So it’s great to dream about creating that killer app that will make you rich, but the game of being successful here may be much harder than you think.

4 Reasons Your Medical Facility Should Upgrade to Tablets

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Most medical facilities have a “system” in place. For example, when a patient comes in for an appointment, she sees a medical assistant, followed by a nurse, then a doctor and finally, a specialist. The “system” — whatever it is — is probably decades old, and it probably worked relatively well until recently. The way of doing things in the past looks decidedly different from the way things are in the present, and that old “system” is no longer the most efficient way to communicate information about a patient to everyone on her health care team.

As anyone currently enrolled in medical school, nursing school or trying to discover more about a master’s degree in nutrition and wellness can tell you, technology is taking over. If your “system” still requires the use of paper charts, laptops or stationary computers to record patient data, the time has come to jump to the front of the line in health care technology and upgrade to tablets. This technology is so smart that it lets doctors go retro and “write” notes again, communication errors are lessened, and time and money are saved. Tablets truly can help make good health care even better.

Penmanship Applies, Again

Tablet technology allows for doctors and care providers to literally write (with their fingers) once again. For many care providers, writing notes was a way to ensure that the narrative of patient care didn’t get lost in the collection of patient data. For many doctors and nurses, a patient’s story of illness is as important as the data that surrounds that story. Tablets can allow for aspects of a patient’s information to be gathered — the who, what, when, where and how that data supplies — and the story of that data in the patient’s words and their care provider’s words. Information like age, race, prescriptions and dosage and the specifics of a diagnosis can all be recorded in a way that makes data usable and interpretable — not just for the patient to whom it directly applies, but also for researchers. The information is valuable to public health and for determining the treatment of different pathologies. With tablets, this technology-driven aspect of patient care can still accommodate the old-school style of recording so that the arc of a story of pathology and health doesn’t get sidelined or overlooked.

Porta-Mobility Is Total

It’s undeniable that the mobility and portability of tablets make their use an asset in health care settings. Unlike paper charts that stay in the patient’s room, charts and data put into tablets can be accessed anywhere and at any time by the entire team that is attending. And being able to chart and record data from anywhere is an added benefit that saves a lot of time. Whereas a desktop- or laptop-centered charting environment often requires double duty — after writing in a patient’s paper chart, a nurse or doctor still has to record the information again (or get someone else to do it) on the computer — tablet recordkeeping is a one-time deal that stays with the record maker and the patient, while updating the rest of team at the same time.

Apps Abound

From simple data recordkeeping to the collaboration and communication they help facilitate, the applications used by doctors and nurses on tablets are transforming how information is gathered, interpreted and applied in patient care. From apps on interactive anatomy for the budding med student to peruse to Drchrono, the application that allows doctors to dictate notes, write prescriptions and manage patient files with an app that stores high-resolution X-rays in the cloud, so that a doctor and team can always have access to them, the application world of tablets is rich, useful and available at almost all times.

Time Is Money. Money Is Time.

As health care costs continue to grow, anything that can save a provider and patient money is going to be valuable. Tablet portability and mobility already save time in data collection and interpretation, and as with most industries: The more time that gets saved in providing health care, the less money gets spent. This, in addition to the capability of a team of professionals how have better communications and less errors as a result of being a tablet-friendly culture, means that upgrading to a “system” of tablet-driven recordkeeping will not just make good financial sense, it makes good patient care sense as well.

About the Author: Candace Jones is a contributing writer and iPad owner who recently completed a master’s in nutrition and wellness.