About Me







Home Business
Web Hosting



Jagjit Singh
Mirza Ghalib



August 2011
July 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
October 2010
August 2007
November 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
November 2005
October 2005
April 2005
December 2004


Syndicate this site (XML)




Valid CSS



© Manish Singh


« February 2011 | Main | August 2011 »

July 30, 2011

Facebook ads vs Google Adwords

Anyone who has ever done business online is aware of Google Adwords, the Pay per click (PPC) ads that allow advertisers to bid on search keywords and send highly targeted traffic to their offer page/website.

In the past few months, Facebook has really picked up in terms of user base. With over 500 million users, its a community that no advertiser can ignore. So which advertising platform is better?

The answer is "depends" :-)

It depends on what kind of promotion you plan to launch. Google adwords works excellent for direct sales where advertisers bid on specific keywords and send the highly targeted traffic to a specific product/landing page. It gives quick ROI on the money spent.

On the other hand, Facebook is a community website where people generally come to socialize and not buy. Hence the buyer's "intent to buy" is not present when he/she clicks on your ads on Facebook.

Facebook, however, offers very specific targeting. For example, you can target all Male members above the age of 18 from a specific area with a specific interest. Google Adwords does allow geo-targeting, but it doesn't give filtering based on user age, sex or other preferences.

Although the targeting can be very specific at Facebook, there may not be an intent to purchase your service. For example, you can run your ads to all male members above 18 years of age from a specific area about a local dating website. However, not everyone who sees such ads may be interested in the service. So how do you protect yourself as an advertiser from such clicks? To counter this issue, Facebook also offers CPM (Cost per thousand impressions) based pricing. CPM based advertising also works best in case the promotion is for branding purpose and not intended for sale.

The best campaigns where Facebook ads work good are "Like" campaigns for a Facebook page. A facebook like on a page makes the user a fan of the page. A Facebook fan will return to your page and keep a check on latest updates posted on your Facebook page. Hence the returns on such campaign last even after the ad campaign ends. This is not true for Google adwords where visitors simply click-buy and move on. As soon as the campaign ends, the flow of visitors stop. Unless they have specifically subscribed to your website newsletter or ordered something from your website, there is absolutely no way to get in touch with such users.

Also given that the Facebook system is relatively new, it is still cheaper compared to Google adwords where cost per click on some of the most competitive keywords exceed $30 USD.

In conclusion, each advertising platform has its pros and cons. Google adwords works best in a sales promotion and offers a quick return on investment (ROI) whereas Facebook ads work best on socially aware promotion campaigns where the users have an opportunity to engage with the brand/company. This may or may not result in an immediate sale.

Posted by manish at 12:47 AM | Comments (0)

« February 2011 | Main | August 2011 »

July 28, 2011

Blackberry torch vs apple iPhone 4

I currently have a Nokia E90 communicator which works pretty good. Except for the body (case) problem that need replacement, there hasn't been any problem in this phone for over 4 years now. But its old. I also own a Blackberry 8320 Curve that I use mainly for BBM. The smartphone world has moved on. I wanted to buy a new smart phone and thinking hard between a Blackberry torch vs apple iPhone. Android phone are good but somehow I am skeptical about the services of the phone manufacturers. I prefer Hardware+Software coming out of a single vendor.

Two people in my family recently purchased a Blackberry torch and apple iPhone 4, so I had the opportunity to spend good time with these two phones. Here's my verdict.

Display: Apple iPhone has a retina display. It is bigger in size than the Blackberry torch. Apple has really done a good job with the display. The multitouch interface is better when compared to Blackberry torch.

Processor Speed: Apple iPhone has a faster processor in terms of CPU clock speed. However, I didn't find the blackberry torch slow. It was responsive and loaded applications within seconds of clicking them.

Keyboard: With the physical Qwerty board in Blackberry torch, it is a far better phone when it comes to composing long email, send IMs and text messages. iPhone does have an on-screen Qwerty keyboard but typing long emails on an iPhone is not comfortable.

App store: This is one area where Apple iPhone is a clear winner. The total number of applications in Apple App store are far more than in the Blackberry App store.

IM: Most of my professional network is on Blackberry Messenger (BBM). Chatting through BBM is cost effective and reliable. Agreed, Apple has Facetime and supports whole bunch of other IM softwares. It's good to chat with family and friends through Facetime but when it comes to communicating with professional contacts, nothing beats BBM.

Battery Life & Memory: Apple iPhone's battery life sucks big time. Unless you shut down location services, notifications and Wifi, don't expect the phone battery to last more than 10-12 hours on a full charge. Blackberry on the other hand easily lasts for 2-3 days with regular email, wifi, app store usage.

When it comes to memory, the Apple iPhone memory isn't expandable. Blackberry comes with a 4GB MicroSD card and can accommodate upto 32GB card.

Internet Speed: Surfing the Internet, checking emails is much faster in Blackberry. The push mail feature is excellent. Most service providers including Vodafone give preference to Blackberry traffic on their network.

Overall Look and Feel: Apple iPhone is more sleek, feels solid in hand. Blackberry torch on the other hand feels like a delicate phone.

Cost: Blackberry torch retails for about Rs 29,000/- while Apple iPhone cost ranges from Rs. 35,000/- to Rs. 41,000/-

My overall impression of the iPhone is that is a good play device. Good build, lots of applications available through app store, location services, games, etc. However, there isn't much of productivity that I could achieve with this phone. Battery didn't last all day, Internet was comparatively slower (service provider network, not WiFi), Composing long emails was hard, not to mention the annoying spell checker. Its a good phone for a college goer (who can afford $1000 USD price tag) or someone who is looking for an entertainment features within their phone.

On the other hand, Blackberry torch is excellent with Emails, Internet, has fair number of apps in the app store and costs less than the iPhone. Its battery lasts much longer too! Its truly a phone for the professionals who have heavy use of emails/IMs.

Posted by manish at 01:28 PM | Comments (0)

« February 2011 | Main | August 2011 »

July 22, 2011

Upgrade to Mac OS X Lion worth it?

Apple recently launched the major update version for its Mac OS X operating system called Lion. While there was a lot of debate and discussion about how much this new OS version will be priced, Apple chose to sell it for $29.95 (same price as previous version Snow Leopard). But the question remains, is Mac OS X Lion worth upgrading to?

Lets look at some of the reasons why you should upgrade to Mac OSX Lion.

Price: Considering it only costs $29.95 USD, its a big plus point if you want to try the new OS.

Encryption: Lion offers full hard disk encryption through File Vault 2. If your laptop contains sensitive information you may want to consider upgrading.

Apple Softwares: Many apple softwares in Lion have gone through a major overhual. New interface, more features. For eg, if you use Apple Mail extensively, that may be a reason enough to upgrade.

Networking: The new Apple feature called Airdrop allows you to send and share files with other apple users nearby. If you use Apple in a small office/team setup, you can quit using third party apps for this feature.

Usability: With new multi-touch features, tablet OS like interface, Full screen viewing and other 250 such features, it will be a boost to productivity.

Now lets look at reasons for not upgrading

Its new. Yes Lion has been in public beta for sometime and whole upgrade works smoothly. But its still a new OS. As with anything new, there are unknowns. It may be wise to just wait for few weeks and let more user reviews be posted about Lion before taking the decision to upgrade.

Also if you use any specific application that is not yet compatible with Mac OS X Lion, you should consider waiting.

There are lot of new features in Lion like versions which help you maintain file versions. However, they change the way mac users save files. There is a learning and "getting used" curve involved which may cause frustration to some users. If you are one of those types, you may want to postpone the decision by few months until these issues are ironed out.

Performance wise there is no data to suggest that Lion is better or worse than Snow Leopard.

As for me, I will be upgrading to Lion in few weeks. The 250+ new features are worth the price!

Before you upgrade make sure to clone your hard disk, just in case you decide to switch back to Snow Leopard.

Posted by manish at 08:19 PM | Comments (0)

« February 2011 | Main | August 2011 »

July 16, 2011

India's UID service uses unlicensed windows copy

Recently, I was at the UID enrollment centre setup near my residence to enroll myself to get a UID card. For those who aren't aware, UID (Unique Identification card) is India's national ID card which will be required in future to avail all government services. It is also known as Aadhar card and is issued by the The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI).

The entire process of enrollment went pretty smooth. They take your picture, scan all 10 fingers and also do an Iris scan. An acknowledgement receipt is generated and given to the person enrolled. The whole process does not take more than 10 minutes.

What surprised me, however, was that the computer used for collecting all this information was running an unlicensed copy of windows. While its a different debate whether Windows OS was really required in the project, but having chosen Windows as the platform for collection of UID data, the government should spend some more money and procured licensed copies of the software.

How many Government institutions and corporate houses in India still use illegal softwares? There is more awareness about using genuine software today than it was 5 years back but given what I just saw today, India has a long way to go until we can truly call ourselves the super power of IT.

Posted by manish at 04:29 PM | Comments (0)