Talks About Tech Weekly 089: The Death of Facebook

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On this episode we talk about the purchase of Motorola, Facebook and much more.

Lenovo Buys Motorola
This week Lenovo bought Motorola from Google for $2.91 billion. In Europe and the US Lenovo are known as a consumer computer manufacturer but Lenovo are actually a big player in the Chinese mobile phone market. This purchase will allow Lenovo to enter the US and European markets pretty easily as Motorola already have the relationships with carriers and retailers.

Google are just after buying Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion and now they are selling the company. They are holding on to the majority of Motorola’s patents though. Only about 2,000 patents will go to Lenovo and Google will give Lenovo a license for the remaining patents.

What is the future for Motorola? I have heard that Motorola will remain a separate company from Lenovo. Lenovo will just use Motorola to enter the US market. I am happy to hear that because Motorola are making great phones at the moment and hopefully they will keep making great phones in the future.

Google Glass Designer Frames Now Available
Glass is Google’s take on wearable computing. It has been constantly in the news for its new approach on interacting with technology. Google has now come out with four new pairs of glasses from the ‘Titanium Collection’ that are fully compatible with Google Glass. The frames are made of extremely light titanium. The frames will cost $225 on top of the current $1500 price for Glass but I presume these frames will also be available when the final product comes out later on this year for a lower price.

Facebook Decline
This week Facebook released their Q4 earnings for 2013 and the figures are incredible. The total revenue was $2.59 billion, that’s 31 cent per share. Facebook now have 1.23 billion monthly active users and 945 billion of them are using mobile devices. Another interesting stat is that 53% of Facebook’s revenue was from mobile advertising. This really shows the increase in Facebook mobile use. Facebook’s total revenue this year was a whopping $7.87 billion up 55% from last year.

So why have researchers from Princeton University been predicting a loss of 80% of users by 2017? Researchers compared Facebook and MySpace growth curves to that of epidemics, specifically using the SIR (susceptible, infected, recovered) model. They applied the SIR model to publicly available historical Google search data for MySpace and Facebook. They were able to identify the adoption and abandonment phases for MySpace and for Facebook they found that it was ‘just beginning to show the onset of an abandonment phase’ showing a decrease from the beginning of 2013. The research also mentioned that ‘the Google search query data for the OSN is assumed to be representative of the magnitude of the infected population’.

It seems that the researchers assumed wrong. According to the Q4 figures Facebook has a huge number of mobile users who wouldn’t use Google to access their accounts. Consequently, the results from this survey are severely skewed.

I don’t think that Facebook is going anywhere for now but there certainly is the risk from other, smaller social networks. Currently, Facebook’s solution is just to buy them.

The Most Frustrating, Addicting Game Ever!
Flappy Bird has been an internet phenomenon. Users of the game have been reporting their frustration, addiction and uselessness for the game. Flappy Bird is a very difficult game where you have to guide a bird through gates. The more gates you pass the better your score. Simple, right? Well you should check this game out because it’s harder than it sounds. You can download it for free now from the iOS App Store and Google Play store now.