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* Posts by Brian Morrison

763 posts • joined 4 Feb 2008

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WAITER! There's a Flappy Bird in my Lollipop!

Brian Morrison
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Very hot blonde doctor?

Hmm, I assume that she's been through the necessary checks after treating people from West Africa?

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Linux systemd dev says open source is 'SICK', kernel community 'awful'

Brian Morrison
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Re: @Andy Prough Hostile leadership vs hostile software

Which is a workable desktop environment for most people that do. I've used it for years, I never got on with KDE and haven't been able to live with Mate or Cinnamon (although I did try for quite a while).

Alternatives exist, as long as someone maintains them then that's fine for everyone.

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Brian Morrison
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Re: @Andy Prough - Hostile leadership vs hostile software

I wouldn't expect a server to have any of this stuff on it, it's used for workstations (although my own machines with pulseaudio and systemd do a bit of serving for IMAP etc) and that's where it is useful.

What I don't do is claim to understand it all fully or want anyone else to do something they don't want to, my view is that systemd should be configurable to be as minimal as possible or even be removed in cases where it provides no useful benefits.

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Brian Morrison
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Re: Oh please...

I've seen some of the complaints about systemd on the kernel list, the one in particular I remember was the one about the debug argument and I agree that it seemed pretty odd although I believe that someone patched it up to work properly after this. This was a Kay Sievers issue as well wasn't it?

There's no question that LP is very much a marmite issue to some people, possibly quite a lot of people. I wonder if he's just bad at explaining himself. I've read some of his blog, it didn't seem particularly obtuse but clearly he's a man on some sort of mission.

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Brian Morrison
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Re: Oh please...

And yet, I use Fedora with systemd and pulseaudio. The latter is great for my purposes, I've had no trouble with it since Fedora 10 or so. Systemd? Well, it seems to work well for my needs, I only had one problem with a SpamAssassin update where I was trying to use -d as a spamd option without realising that systemd works a little differently.

Personally I don't understand the total dislike for it that some people have but then I am quite happy to see people build distros that use SysVinit if that's what they want. There is room for both camps.

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IRONY ALERT: Former MI6 chief warns of 'mass snooping' - by PAEDOS

Brian Morrison
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Re: Unrelated question

The simple answer is that the hoi polloi are being distracted by pursuing people like DLT while the purveyors of children in care, from Elm House for instance, are being carefully forgotten as much as possible.

If I didn't know better I'd think that some sort of conspiracy was in action.

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MOST iPhone strokers SPURN iOS 8: iOS 7 'un-updatening' in 5...4...

Brian Morrison
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Re: 4S killer

Doesn't seem to be the case on a 32GB version, at least not heard much complaining beyond the usual moaning about downloading the best part of a gigabyte and waiting for the installation to complete.

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You are here => Earth is in 'the suburbs' of an IMMENSE HEAVEN

Brian Morrison
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I thought you were out by a fair bit, I made it 3.334x10^^17 molecules in 1/100th of a cubic mm. 100 quadrillion is 10^^20. Er, no, quadrillion is 10^^15 isn't it, I was thinking 10^^18 which is a quintillion. So it's actually 3.334x10^^14. Was that the number you first thought of?

18g (or cc) of water gives 6.022 x 10^^23 molecules, so divide by 18,000*100,000.

Fun with chemistry again after 33 years, yay!

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Brian Morrison
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Re: Boring is good.

Yes, because the people who named it are in Hawaii and like names that reflect local culture.

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Brian Morrison
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Re: And we're still...

Cyclical, yes.

In your particular case I think you're supposed to say "Oh no, not again!"

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Brian Morrison
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And we're still...

...far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the western spiral arm of the Galaxy...

<sigh!>

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Galileo! Galileo. Galileo! Galileo frigged-LEO: Easy come, easy go. Little high, little low

Brian Morrison
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Re: what is their current orbit?

I don't think station keeping is much of a problem, it's not like geostationary orbit where they need to be within a small box over the equator as they are actually intended to be in a geosynchronous orbit (2 orbits in 24 hours is what the GPS SVs do, not sure if Galileo is the same).

In theory all that matters is that they are in a predictable position, fill in an empty part of the constellation and can be found and their ephemeris data measured very accurately using the earth stations, the satellites just send this information back to the GNSS receivers of the users which then perform the calculations needed to locate themselves.

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Will It Blend? Maybe. BlackBerry’s secret comeback weapon

Brian Morrison
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Bridge has been supported on the BBOS 10 devices for a while now, so if you still have that Playbook...

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The Register Monopoly Pubcrawl Mobile Map: VODAFONE WINS VOICE

Brian Morrison
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Re: VMNOs

It should be identical in terms of everything within O2's network with the exception of the specific virtual links allocated to the MVNO in question and any interaction between the MVNO's billing system and the O2 HLR that holds the account details/credit status.

Short answer, very little difference, but I can say that in giffgaff's case their data links are pretty congested and they're in the process of making changes to tariffs etc to try and fix this.

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UK government accused of hiding TRUTH about Universal Credit fiasco

Brian Morrison
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Re: Are there ANY success stories?

Divide and rule I should think, trying to prevent one copper from becoming de-facto PM or Home Secretary.

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Brian Morrison
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Re: Are there ANY success stories?

Too late for the tax disc, as from October 2014 it is no more and will, like MoT and Motor Insurance, be checked from the DVLA database.

Looks like your sub-PO is going to need more sales of sundries...

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EE network whacked by 'PDP authentication failure' blunder

Brian Morrison
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Re: Wondered what was going on

Ah, status@gate, that's a real blast from the past.

I shall raise you with a brief finger of post...

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UK mobile coverage is BETTER than EVER, networks tell Ofcom

Brian Morrison
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Re: confused by ...

The meaning is simple, only 1 in 100 does not make mobile calls even though they have a device that allows them to do so. These may be people using only SIP/VoIP.

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UK WhatsApp duo convicted of possessing extreme porn

Brian Morrison
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Re: @aBloke FromEarth - Possessing an image likely to cause injury

Er, but they're *all* a bunch of moralising clowns Graham, that's why they like being in charge :(

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Brian Morrison
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Re: Possessing an image likely to cause injury

They mean that the image *depicts* an activity likely to cause injury to the "breasts, genitals or anus" which I think is what the extreme porn legislation says.

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Brian Morrison
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It'll have been done under the We-couldn't-give-a-crap-about-the-law-you're-nicked Act.

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Brian Morrison
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Re: unsolicited

I have never deleted any of my WhatsApp or BBM chats, my phone has lots of storage so why would I need to?

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Brian Morrison
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Re: unsolicited

It won't work, the establishment will protect them unless TPTB don't like that particular politician and want them to be chopped down a peg or two.

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All those new '5G standards'? Here's the science they rely on

Brian Morrison
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Re: re. small antennas

Yes, which is why path loss rises with increasing frequency. If you are only interested in small ranges then this actually helps with interference mitigation, but of course you need enough link budget to make your applications work within the serving cell.

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Spanish struggle to control spelling of 'WhatsApp'

Brian Morrison
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Re: Gender of the internet???

Only if you can see the fnord...

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New MH370 search zone picked using just seven satellite 'handshakes'

Brian Morrison
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Re: Doppler Shift and Timing of Satellite Signals

Read the ATSB report, there are two or three examples of other commercial flights being tracked using the same Inmarsat systems and their ground tracks being plotted within a quite small error in comparison with their position recorded from GPS coordinates. That should mean that data captured from the MH370 aircraft is valid and relatively accurate.

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Brian Morrison
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Re: What about those black-box locator pings?

The problem is that the pings can change frequency as the batteries run down, it is quite easy for a 37.5kHz pinger to drift down to 33kHz once the batteries are nearly dead. In addition the water pressure also affects the frequency a little, so the frequency can change depending on the depth.

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Ofcom to BT Openreach: From now on, you'd better kill 70% of gremlins within 2 days

Brian Morrison
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Re: Do they still charge for technical support calls?

You could always try asking a question on the Fibre Broadband forum at ThinkBroadband.com

There are people there who can get the information you seek.

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F1 racing ace Michael Schumacher's medical records were pinched

Brian Morrison
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Re: Good news

He's been out of the medical definition of a coma since Sabine Kehm said as much in April, he had opened his eyes and was exhibiting short periods of apparent consciousness.

What that means for his future is unclear. Sadly Gary Hartstein, who is a realist (and a neurologist), doesn't think that his chances are very good. I wish it were otherwise but only time will tell.

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Android to drop Dalvik VM for high-performance ART in next version

Brian Morrison
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Re: Strange...

Never did work out what that extra 1 meant, the 100MHz should have implied a DX3 suffix.

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BlackBerry inks deal with Amazon to get Android apps on its mobes

Brian Morrison
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Re: Dilemma

Just to make it clear, BBOS 10 does away with all that Blackberry data stuff and makes it behave like everything else with normal APNs and settings, it's now only BES that uses BB's own services.

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CIA rendition jet was waiting in Europe to SNATCH SNOWDEN

Brian Morrison
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Re: Groundless conjecture.

IIRC the US Marshals are part of the FBI and hence can be used to do stuff that isn't publicly admitted.

Isn't that why Florida police have deputized some of the cellular surveillance operatives into the Marshals so that they can't be so easily FoI'd about what they're doing?

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Brian Morrison
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Re: Groundless conjecture.

That'll be the same groundless conjecture that DC has been writing about for 35+ years now where he's regularly been shown to be pretty much right in hindsight is it Matt?

The establishment hate him, and have tried to stop him many times, they wouldn't bother if he was an insignificant gadfly now would they?

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Brian Morrison
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Re: Impressive amateur tracking work...

Have a look at the PlanePlotter site, I think it's at www.coaa.co.uk or some such.

Bev is one very smart chap, he managed to make MLAT work because the original SBS-1 receiver has a fast clock that is used to timestamp received transponder signals, with ntp and some clever PhD level maths you can then create intersecting hyperbolas that tell you where the thing is provided that you get enough receivers to resolve the ambiguities in position.

From 45,000 feet, just about everyone can hear a transponder.

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Brian Morrison
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Re: gaz TheOtherHobbes

Hardly, the Dutch descendants were responsible for Apartheid which in itself added to the pressure building up in the southern part of Africa.

You can't let them off, they're as guilty as all the other colonial powers!

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Brian Morrison
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Re: TheOtherHobbes

Remember that all these countries boundaries were created in 1918 in a stitch-up between France and the UK. Those straight lines on the map are a dead giveaway aren't they?

What is happening now is that the Middle East map is being redrawn with the tribal and religious links from the past reimposed, although quite how this will end up I don't know.

It was inevitable that once the regional dictators were changed/removed/challenged that something like this would happen.

May you live in interesting times!

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Revoke, reissue, invalidate: Stat! Security bods scramble to plug up Heartbleed

Brian Morrison
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Re: sounds familiar

It has taken a while for this particular bug to be found, but without the source oversight it wouldn't have been. Had this been in a closed-source product without the same robust methods of detecting such bugs the same thing can happen and the number of reviewers is much more limited.

It's a great shame that this didn't get spotted earlier or recognised as a security problem but then if someone is determined to commit at 11pm on New Year's Eve then the chances that they remembered doing it and ran lots of tests subsequently is clearly reduced.

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MPs attack BT's 'monopolistic' grip on gov-subsidised £1.2bn rural broadband rollout

Brian Morrison
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Re: You're an idiot.

Does BT provide VDSL connections over exchange connected lines? I suspect they don't, which means a limit of 24Mbps from ADSL2+ instead of VDSL's limit of 80-odd Mbps.

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BT finally admits its Home Hub router scuppers some VPN connections

Brian Morrison
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Re: 4.7.5.1.83.8.94.1.37

And no wonder that they can't keep track of which features are fixed/broken in such a labyrinthine numbering scheme.

Maybe they could make it even worse using hexadecimal and colons...oh, no, that's IPv6.

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This record-smashing robot solves a Rubik's Cube in 3.253 seconds

Brian Morrison
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These chaps have dedication!

Well done to them both, it's great to see such single-mindedness.

It's a long time since I remember seeing David and family happily playing with Mindstorms robots on the living room floor, glad to see that all that coding has achieved something really useful!

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Red Hat plans unified security management for Fedora 21

Brian Morrison
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One really good thing to see is...

...that Fedora 21 is not going to be released in May, they've actually put a whole 6 months into the schedule to get things settled down a bit more. The most recent 3 releases have been pretty hairy in that things have gone wrong with the new installer and the updating tools such as fedup have been less than perfect. It seems that someone has finally said "Enough!" and forced a delay to allow people to tidy up things that need it.

Good on the security overhaul too though, sounds good to me.

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Got 4G? Wake up, grandad. We're doing 4.5G LTE-A in London - EE chief

Brian Morrison
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Re: Got 4G ?

Have Vodafone rolled out the 10.2.1 OS update for their BB 10 devices? It might make a difference.

Some time ago my daughter's Z10 (which is on 3) seemed to leave the network selection to 3G/2G, and once it changed it back after it was set to 4G/3G/2G. Worth a look see I'd say...

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New radio tech could HALVE mobe operators' bandwidth needs

Brian Morrison
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So let me ask this then....

Base stations can transmit at powers up to +64dBm, and receive at levels down around -100dBm. That's 164dB difference in signal level, or more than 16 orders of magnitude. How many bits of resolution would you need to separate out those two very different amplitude signals? My rough calculation says 27 bits.

Is that even possible? I don't know of a way of doing that even at audio frequencies, let alone RF.

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Cable thieves hang up on BT, cause MAJOR outage

Brian Morrison
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Re: Time for a Sting?

Yep, that Law of Unintended Consequences is a real bitch!

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Brian Morrison
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Re: Damn thieves

You need the high voltage to puncture the (high resistance) outer skin layers. Once you're into the nice soggy stuff inside the skin then the resistance drops very rapidly and current flows without much problem.

This is the reason that people who get electrocuted by a few thousand volts and up tend to end up scorched and smoking, their internal body fluids have boiled.

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NHS England DIDN'T tell households about GP medical data grab plan

Brian Morrison
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A little more on this, via the UKCrypto mailing list...

From http://www.hscic.gov.uk/hes

"In 1996 these bodies were abolished and the NHS-Wide Clearing Service (NWCS) was set up to provide a means of transmitting the records. In 2006 this work was taken over by the Secondary Uses Service, which is run by the Health and Social Care Information Centre and the National Programme for IT.”

So it came under HSCIS’s remit in 2006. The data set was from 2000-2010.

For tracking though, there is the HESID - http://www.hscic.gov.uk/media/1370/HES-Hospital-Episode-Statistics-Replacement-of-the-HES-patient-ID/pdf/HESID_Replacement_Nov09.pdf

Which appears to include per-client pseudonym-ids. Data cleaning on release appears to be documented here - http://www.datadictionary.nhs.uk/web_site_content/cds_supporting_information/security_issues_and_patient_confidentiality.asp?shownav=1

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Mobe operators, need to check your network? There’s an app for that

Brian Morrison
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We already have...

...OpenSignal on Android that does pretty much this.

Assuming that it's accurate and that it keeps the correct values.

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Brian Morrison
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They measure...

...SNR in dbm (sic)?

Heavens to Betsy, now we know why coverage isn't what we expect!

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BlackBerry sets BBM Voice and Channels live on iOS and Android

Brian Morrison
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Have to agree that it's pretty nice and has gained a lot of new features in a fairly short time.

While it looks very 'BlackBerry' on my Nexus, it seems to work well and keeps me in touch with the BB/iPhone/Android using family members very nicely.

Thumbs up from me!

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Android users running old OS versions? Not anymore, say latest stats

Brian Morrison
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Re: kit kat

It's often difficult to upgrade because the hardware vendor withdraws driver support for the chipset used in older phones, mainly because they don't have the resources to work on old hardware while simultaneously developing and releasing future and current hardware.

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