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Like Skobbler on Facebook and Win an iPad2

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Skobbler, makers of Forever Map, a cool 99¢ navigation app for iOS devices is giving away an iPad2 on Monday so you have a small window of time to squeek through and snag your chance.

All you have to do is “Like” Skobbler’s Facebook page and “Like” one of its daily status updates between March 29 and April 4 to be entered in their drawing.

The rules are unclear whether that means you have to “Like” a daily status update for each day between 3/29-4/4 or if it’s OK to “Like” just a single status update during that timeframe, but it couldn’t hurt to get happy with the “Like” buttons. The folks at Facebook seem to enjoy and how else are you going to get an iPad2 these days?

How Apple Got Its Logo [Memory Lane]

How Apple Got Its Logo [Memory Lane]

There’s long been a number of urban legends about how Apple came up with its iconic logo.

There’s the idea that the bite symbolizes knowledge, or that the overall image is a tribute to mathematician Alan Turing, who committed suicide by taking a bite of an apple laced with cyanide.

But here’s the real story.

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iPad2 Parody Video Shows Thin Line Between Love and Hate

iPad2 Parody Video Shows Thin Line Between Love and Hate

It’s almost too easy to make a parody video of Apple and its products these days. The company follows an easily discernible regularity in its product launches and despite growing popularity and marketshare for all of its products over the last decade, Apple’s “image” is tagged with the weight of a certain “hipster cred” that tends to make for easy pickings when it comes to ridicule.

Director Dan Dobi and writer Steve Rogowski skate pretty close to several uncomfortable lines in this one, however, which, presumably is intentional.

After all, parody and sarcasm are about getting people talking, right?

Hugh Hefner Tweets Uncensored Playboy Coming to iPad

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Hugh Hefner, founder of the Grandaddy of all girlie mags, Playboy, tweeted Tuesday evening that an “uncensored” Playboy is coming to iPad.

Given that the Playboy website’s metadata “description” reads: “Nude girls, hot girls, naked women and sexy pics with nude girls as well as videos of hot girls posing nude or in sexy positions celebrating girls and women …” — Hef’s tweet would appear to be in direct contradiction of Apple’s prohibition against sexually provocative material in apps designed to run on iOS devices.

Maybe Hef knows something we don’t know; perhaps he’s just hoping to take advantage of Steve Jobs being on medical leave. Or maybe Hef is just a little more hip to the buzz generating capabilities of Twitter than an 84 year-old guy ought to be.

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T-Mobile Comes After Verizon, at&t With New Ad

Details may remain sketchy on the special event T-Mobile has scheduled for sometime in the coming weeks but the #4 carrier in the US wasted no time cranking up a new ad that riffs on the old “upstarts are cool – Big Guys are stodgy” meme that Apple has used for years to poke fun at Microsoft.

The ad should start running on US television networks next week, according to a report at TechCrunch.

Why iPad Magazines Are Failing

Why iPad Magazines Are Failing

When WIRED rolled out its first iPad edition, the publisher sold more than 100,000 copies. Everyone proclaimed the arrival of the electronic magazine at last.

Vanity Fair, GQ and Glamour also enjoyed healthy rollouts, though nothing near the WIRED debut.

But after initial success, iPad magazines are suddenly taking a dive. WIRED sales of subsequent editions have tanked to 22,000 and 23,000 for October and November, respectively. Other magazines have seen approximate 20% drops. Specifically, Vanity Fair dropped from 10,500 to 8,700 downloads; GQ from 13,000 to 11,000; Glamour from 4,301 to 2,775.

If iPad and electronic magazines are to gradually replace print, they’ve got to grow circulations, not shrink them. And they’ve got to at least do better than my Twitter feed.

Electronic magazine sales in general, and iPad sales in particular, will fail under the existing model.

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iPhone Helps Take Scrooge Out of Holiday Shopping Season

iPhone Helps Take Scrooge Out of Holiday Shopping Season

Thanks to the number-crunchers and graphics staff at Mobclix we see a nice representation of iPhone’s participation in the Great Holiday Recovery of 2010.

Consumers’ credit-card spending returned to “pre-recession levels” this year on Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving), traditionally considered the start of the Holiday Shopping season, and overall spending activity saw double-digit increases over 2009.

As reported earlier this week by First Data, overall consumer spending activity at the shopping season’s kickoff has much improved over last year, sparked by aggressive marketing that lured value-conscious consumers to post a 10.1% increase in transaction volume — and it looks like Apple iPhone users played a large role in hitting that number.

Interestingly, the consumer electronics category fared poorly and was down -6.7% compared to last year. The First Data report speculated that consumers may be holding out for lower prices on electronics later in the holiday season.

“Get A Mac” Ad Used to Explain al-Qaida’s New Media Ops

“Get A Mac” Ad Used to Explain al-Qaida’s New Media Ops

Adam Gadahn as "PC" and Anwar al-Awlaki as a "Mac."

Those iconic “Get a Mac” ads were recently used by an intelligence analyst to explain the emerging styles of two of al-Qaida’s American recruits.

At a classified intelligence conference outside Washington, the audience laughed and applauded when American al-Qaida members Adam Gadahn and Anwar al-Awlaki were swapped in for PC John Hodgman and Mac Justin Long in an Apple commercial.

Other analysts agreed that the award-winning ads featuring an uncool PC and a laid-back, charismatic Mac are apt characterizations of the two high-ranking American al-Qaida media strategists.

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Jingle Player Brings Indy Music to the iPad

Jingle Player Brings Indy Music to the iPad

Ever wonder how they come up with those great songs you hear in TV, film, advertising and interactive media? You know, those songs that sound like they might be huge hits but are actually songs you’re probably hearing for the very first time?

Odds are — in recent years, at any rate — producers of that TV show, film or ad got the music from Jingle Punks, a New York-based firm with a proprietary search algorithm and a huge (and growing) library of independent music that is changing the way music makes it into consumer media almost overnight.

Time was, creative directors in the entertainment industry sat in offices behind mountains of cassette tapes and CD jewel boxes, sifting through demos sent in by every Indy band from Bellingham to Boca Raton, searching for the right sound to make their productions sing. Often it amounted to drudgery as a job and a crap-shoot for musicians and songwriters, who never knew if their masterpiece would get played for the right set of ears.

Now, thanks to Jingle Player, an iPad app with advanced meta-tagging magic built inside, former drones for the likes of NBC, MTV, VHI and countless ad agencies on Madison Avenue are suddenly freed from their dank hovels to roam the earth brandishing iPads, fulfilling the dreams of indy musicians toiling in obscurity. The Jingle Player’s secret sauce lies in its ability to serve up the right songs based on the way people actually talk about music, using pop culture-relevant terms instead of technical music business jargon.

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Google Approves of Apple’s Non-Restrictive iAds Policy

Google Approves of Apple’s Non-Restrictive iAds Policy

Apple is once again friends with Google, at least as far as mobile ads go.

Google says its wholeheartedly approves of Apple’s relaxation of its mobile advertising policy. The old policy effectively locked out Google’s AdMob platform from in-app advertising on the iPhone and iPad.

Apple’s new terms will open up in-app advertising to competitors and enable advertising systems that work across a range of platforms (IE. iPhone and Android), Google says.

“This is great news for everyone in the mobile community, as we believe that a competitive environment is the best way to drive innovation and growth in mobile advertising. Mobile advertising has already helped to fund tens of thousands of mobile apps across many different platforms and devices, and it will help do the same for many more in the years ahead.”

Google: An Update on Apple’s Terms of Service