Raising the Allure of Technology

In a country where software development has far too long been overlooked as a mere support function, Singapore is now realigning itself with initiatives like the Smart Nation movement, so as to prime itself for the future. While it has been busy making technology sound cool to its natives in the past few years, tech giants like Google, Apple, and IBM  have been making some strides forward too, which Singaporeans need to be aware of.

Google

Having overtaken Apple as the world’s most valuable listed company, it has decided that app developers, the ones that have contributed to its success, should get a bigger cut from the awesome work that they do. From the previous 70% share that Android developers used to take home, they are now poised to get a hike up to 85%, which sounds even better than Apple’s own revenue-sharing business model. Even better because, the giant is willing to spell out this hike for every single subscriber, including the ones that are only in it for 12 months.

On top of incentives, it’s decided to ramp up quality within its ranks by announcing a new certification program for development agencies, which will elevate those “that have undergone the required training and have demonstrated excellence in building Android applications” according to a Google spokesperson. While this isn’t exactly fresh news, it serves as a reminder that Google wants to show support for agencies that do work on web apps too.

Apple

The Cupertino giants of late, have been struggling to retain the interest of its fans lately, with hardly any help from users of its Watch. A lone voice, by the name of Marco Arment, himself an Apple developer, had this to say: “, Facebook, and Google are placing large bets on advanced AI, ubiquitous assistants, and voice interfaces, hoping that these will become the next thing that our devices are for” and “IF they’re right – and that’s a big ‘if’ – I’m worried for Apple.” His worry of course stems from the time Blackberry (also known as Research in Motion, ironically), seemed to move like a Juggernaut, until Apple changed it all in one fell swoop.

Having said that, there are a few things to look forward to after the WWDC this year, Apple’s developer conference later this month. Siri might steal the show this year, the deadpan-quipping mobile assistant possibly finding upgrades in voicemail-managing features, together with other intuitive features. Of course, the iOS 10, which is next in line to serve the iPhone and iPad will be a shoo-in for the spotlight as well, together with the OS X.

IBM

While the heavyweights of new have been duking it out for the spotlight, IBM has been making waves too, though a bit further out at sea, with exploits like the Big Data University initiative, which has now managed to snag the signatures of over 400,000 students, by not charging for its courses, and adopting a business-centric approach in a bid to set itself apart from other open course providers.

This investiture in education is nothing new, with Google already setting the pace with it in vastly-developing countries like India and Africa, but IBM plans to tailor course packages so as to cater to the needs of individual establishments.

While the giants and providers of technologies take each other head on, the people on the ground have plenty of ideas to take the world forward too, especially in ideation breeding grounds like colleges. Everyone has their part to play, and it starts from the ground up.

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