eBay Motors app designed for browsing as much as bidding

Yesterday Steve Yankovich, vice president of mobile for eBay Motors, walked me through a demo of the eBay dedicated automotive iPhone app. The company is releasing a handful of vertical apps designed to engage the user, encourage frequent shopping, and increase sales. The eBay Motors app for iPhone is expected to be released in March or April, and Android and iPad apps are also in the works.

The app contains all the typical search features you'd find on the site, enabling users to search for specific vehicles by make, model, and year, and filter based on color, condition, price … Read more

Nokia CEO's blunt e-mail; iPad 2 already in production?

Links from Wednesday's episode of Loaded:

HP WebOS event

New Nokia CEO's blunt memo

iPad 2 already in production?

Verizon to improve voice quality over 4G

NYU professor camera experiment not going so well

Google Translate for iPhone

iPhone 4 hits Verizon

Report: Apple retail stores to nix boxed software

Apple has a long history of happily killing off a feature, plug, or technology in the name or progress, and next on that extinction list could be boxed software from the company's retail stores.

MacRumors is reporting that Apple plans to do just that sometime in the future. The move, the report says, would be made to direct users to Apple's digital software distribution system, the Mac App Store. The company made the store available to users just last month in the latest version of the Mac OS, 10.6 "Snow Leopard," and will be making … Read more

Android app released for Google's Blogger

The Google-owned Blogger network has released a free app designed to enable people who have built their blogs on the Blogger platform to easily update them from their Android smartphones.

Unveiled this week, the program lets people bang out copy, and take photos with their phones, from directly inside the app--and then either publish their words and images straightaway or save a draft for later. Posts and drafts can be viewed directly in the app or, by way of a quickly accessible menu, in a browser.

Users can also select their location and include that information with their post, switch … Read more

Office Web Apps to go worldwide in March

Microsoft says that by next month, users worldwide will be able to get their hands on the free, online version of its Office suite.

In a post on the Office Blog earlier this week, the company said that it had expanded Office Web Apps availability in 150 new countries including Mexico, India, Israel, and Saudi Arabia, and that by next month it will hit "all remaining markets in Central and South America."

The free service, which contains Web-based versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote, was launched by Microsoft in June of last year. Microsoft says that 30 … Read more

Turn your iPhone into a McIntosh

McIntosh makes high-end, expensive audio components that most people can't afford but wish they could. Now the company is offering up something free to iPhone and iPod Touch users who want to bring a little old-school McIntosh flair to their devices: an audio player app that's skinned with the "legendary" McIntosh analog blue meter.

The app description reads:

McIntosh Labs is proud to introduce the AP1 Audio Player--the first digital product from the legendary audio experts. The AP1 offers iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch owners the ability to listen to and playback music from their digital … Read more

iPad App Store adds new search tools

Finding App Store apps that aren't featured prominently on the front page generally tends to revert into the proverbial needle-hunt in the haystack. Good news: new search tabs have magically appeared as of this morning, making app-browsing just a little easier.

The new pull-down search categories, as seen above, cover price, rating, platform, release window, and the like. They appear when using the search function, and can help narrow down a wide field of apps (such as, say, "dog apps"). It's a solid first step, but it doesn't help address flaws that are already in … Read more

App for iPhone tells you where to get naked

Apple has for some reason seen fit to approve an iPhone app that helps nudists find one another. Developed by Simply Basic Software, AANRmobile is the official app for the American Association for Nude Recreation, which says it boasts up to 50,000 members and more than 260 resorts nationwide. That's a lot of skin.

The app isn't that scandalous, really. It has no images and no links to images of nudity, which, based on the nudists I've known in Olympia, Wash., is perhaps a good thing.

It does include an FAQ regarding recreational nudity (which I … Read more

Fancy a Ferrari? Rev up eBay Motors mobile app

At the Mobile Insider conference this week, representatives from mobile ad network AdMob reported that three to four Ferraris are sold each month on eBay's mobile app. The surprising statistic was confirmed by eBay Motors, which added that the eBay app for iPhone has moved 38 Ferraris since it launched last year.

But it's not just Ferraris mobile users are bidding on--members have purchased Lamborghinis and Bentleys from their mobile devices. The most expensive vehicle purchased using the iPhone app was a Mercedes SLR McLaren for $240,001. Whoever bid $240,000 for the vehicle must be kicking themselves.

These big-ticket vehicle purchases have been made through a combination of "Buy Now" selections and auctions. eBay spokesperson Angela Leon says mobile app features that alert users when they've been outbid have made it easier for members to complete sales on mobile devices.

Mobile buying and bidding of vehicles will continue to grow when eBay launches its Motors-specific app in the next few weeks.… Read more

BlackBerry App World 2.1 gets in-app payments

BlackBerry maker RIM has announced a change to its BlackBerry App World applications sales front that will gratify both developers and owners of BlackBerry smartphones.

Starting today, BlackBerry App World 2.1 will now let users buy features within an app in stages.

In-app payments already constitute a popular billing model within the smartphone world, particularly among gamers who can purchase access to new levels. Their use lets developers offer apps for free, then gradually up-sell certain features to the user, instead of charging for an entire game or app up front.

A new payment service on RIM's back … Read more