2180 posts • joined 16 Apr 2007
There's no doubt about it: Samsung is continuing to impress by doing real R&D and coming up with new things. Some of the time you go: just what am I supposed to be doing with this, which is just as it should be and the way it was when Xerox and co. also did real research.
Re: "rather terrible advert"
I thought it was a reasonable piss-take of San Francisco hipsters.
Lack of value proposition
If this is about competing with ARM, while it's a start it's also flawed. ARM chips are cheaper and the designs come with the licence to tinker so companies can go to different ARM fabs with the specs and shop for the best deal, or do an Apple and make their own designs and then get a fab to make them. With Intel you pay more for the chips in the first place and then pay even more to be able to ask for modifications. At the volumes needed to make a difference and, assuming you need chip engineers to be able to spec any changes, it's better just to become an ARM licensee.
Nah, EBITDA still in use by a lot of companies who try and use it to smooth out kinks and show "underlying" performance.
The Economist reckons that even $ 17 is probably too expensive. I wouldn't mind but I know that somewhere down the line one of the companies I expect financial probity from (my bank, insurance company, pension fund, etc.) is bound to be sinking some of my savings into this IPO. :-(
Re: My Book Live 3TB
Mac osx being a labotimised (sic) rehash of it (Linux)
Obviously you need to brush up on operating systems 101 as well as your spelling…
Re: Standard "no problems here" comment
I tried the WD software when I bought my drive a few years ago and ditched for being slow as hell and not seeming to provide anything over Time Machine.
Still, I was impressed to receive e-mails from WD advising of possible problems and against upgrading to Mac OS 10.9 (Mavericks).
Having been burned by Apple's releases in the past I'm more than happy to wait for the biggest bugs to be fixed first, though I've given up hope that they'll ever fix the Firewire bug they introduced in Snow Leopard which causes my system to stall every time Time Machine starts talking to external drives.
Re: Backup capacity
Who pays? Microsoft, of course. But it's a silly question. Arguments about CO2 and subsidies aside this kind of arrangement makes a lot of sense: the price of the energy produced by the the plant is fixed for pretty much forever. Yes, that includes some hedging for purchasing from the grid should supply not meet demand, but less so than buying entirely from the grid.
Assuming planned demand is close to expected output this makes the data centre independent of the utilities and avoids possible conflicts with other customers. Wind and solar make small, local power plants financially viable: who would build a coal, gas or nuclear power station with just 55 MW capacity?
Google-owned Motorola’s rumoured lower-cost alternative to the top-of-the-range …
That's a pretty impressive spec for something now considered low-end!
Re: Don't get it
It looks very much like Google is letting Motorola get on with the job of making phones. There are lots of reasons why Google doesn't make the Nexus devices with its own subsidiary, chief among is most likely not wanting to piss off your partners by competing directly with them.
But, you also need to factor in the lead time for new hardware projects: at least 18 months. So we are unlikely to see any really Googley Motorolas before next year. Google may continue to use Motorola as a quick technology test bed for new kinds of hardware.
I know it doesn't count but…
Orac from Blake's 7 has to be the best TV computer: infallible but cranky and fortunately with an off-switch!
The dishwasher powder, and especially the softening salt, promote corrosion. How heavy the corrosion is will depend to some extent on the hardness of the water: harder water needs more softening and more softening will mean more corrosion. There are tabs that you can buy that are designed for use with steel and silver (even more susceptible to corrosion) that I find really* do make a difference and now I only use them when washing knifes or pans.
In general, however, knives are easiest washed by hand. If you do wash them in the dishwasher then use the special tabs, use the shortest, gentlest cycle and take them out and dry them as soon as the cycle has ended.
* I recently bought a pH-meter to help identify the best water filter for the very heavy calcium content in the water here, so I do take these things perhaps a little too seriously.
Re: Ceramic knives?
Ceramic blades hardly ever get blunt but they are very brittle so it depends what use them for and especially what the chopping surface is like. If you chop quickly, say your slicing carrots, on a hard surface you'll quickly splinter it; on a softer surface you'll get years of use.
If a ceramic knife does need sharpening you can do it with an electric device but much better to take it to a knife shop and let them do it.
The figures for Vista, which has the same underlying improved security system found in Windows 7 and Windows 8, are nearly as bad as those for XP. Now, obviously the chart is supposed to be telling users that the more modern versions of Windows are inherently safer but it can also be read as, the longer an OS is out there the riskier it is and that infection rates like those of XP are only a matter of time for Windows 8.
Re: Isn't this exactly the way Blackberry crashed and burned?
@ Andy Prough
Apple makes its money from hardware not software. With Google able to provide Android to vendors for minimal fees (free for some) Apple would need to come up with a different business model to be able to charge significantly for the OS.
The experience with the clones of the 1990s was a salutary one, though I suspect that if it had gone to doing software only things might have been different.
Re: Isn't this exactly the way Blackberry crashed and burned?
Additionally, I'd be willing to bet that the profit margin per device is much higher, for Apple, so they can sustain a loss in market share, especially since the market is growing, without effecting their bottom line.
It is affecting the bottom line, it was in the latest earnings call. The price adjustments for the I-Pad have been most marked over the last 12 months:
Re: Niche Product
Apple's sales are not increasing - < 1 % growth in volume.
Re: But how many of the Android tablets are landfill?
The figures quite clearly point to substantial growth at the premium end with Samsung's and Lenovo's sales. Apple is still holding its own, but as SuccessCase points outs, these sales include the less-than-premium I-Pad-Mini.
Weird thing for IDC figures no mention of stellar MS' performance is.
Re: Peak Apple
Mount Everest has also peaked, but I don't see many signs of it being broken up for crazy paving just yet
Not sure about that - isn't India still moving north?
Mount McKinley, however, definitely has peaked losing about 20 m since the 1950s!
Have to agree that Hangout has become the best OTT messaging application out there and it runs on everything.
To put that into perspective, Apple's "flop" iPhone 5C phone, which borrows its design aesthetic from Nokia's distinctive Lumias…
Andrew, you're better than this. It's not my taste but the 5c is very much in the mould of the I-Pods which have been in garish colours for a decade.
Re: How many of these are nasty Galaxy mini landfill phones?
I don't like their attitude to updates or the changes they've made from stock Android.
The update policy, along with that of other manufacturers, has got a lot better. I think this has had as much to do with having the right people managing the software and its distribution as official policy. Kies used to be the biggest pile of shit out there, and on MacOS it pretty much still is. But now that OTA is working well that hardly matters.
I find the UI fine but wish it would be easier to uninstall some of the apps that come preinstalled and that don't interest me at all. Then again rooting is hardly a problem, Samsung have never really tried to stop users doing it.
S4 Mini vs HTC Mini - very much a matter of choice. I prefer AMOLED screens and the ability of using an SD card. The S4 Mini has some interesting options hidden in there - press home button to answer a call and gives me 2 days of use with the right settings.
The evidence is in the figures: revenue up slightly for the same quarter as last year, earnings down slightly.
Well, you're essentially restating what I said: 8 million a month is impressive whichever way you look at it. However, Apple is now available on all US networks and in most countries and its year-on-year sales show little growth, similar IIRC to Samsung's summer figures. This indicative of the Smartphone market reaching maturity which is why there are all kinds of questions as to "where is the growth going to come from?". Personally, if it was my company I'd be more than happy for things to stay like that, as long as I got a nice dividend to reflect it. But that's not necessarily the way Wall St thinks. The recent hires indicate that Apple is going to move towards being brand first and foremost, I'd argue that it has traditionally been both brand, quality and technology.
I guess we'll see.
After reporting that it had sold nine million of the new iPhones in their first weekend of sales ...
So that's 9 million of 34 million in one weekend. That's very impressive business but does seem to cast the rest of the quarter in a not so brilliant light. Well, at least in terms of growth. I'm sure there are plenty of companies out there who'd like to be selling 8 million phones a month, especially with Apple's margins. However, it does seem to confirm that growth in that market has come / is coming to an end.
Relatively specific use case, sure, but there was usefulness in RT long before Nokia was around, you just had to look for it.
Did you pay the original price? I think the point is that the original RT was too expensive for consumers and too weak (no Excel macros, no Outlook) for professionals.
Re: Just to put this in perspective....
Yep, the way the suggestion sailed through parliament (the number of amendments is not as important as the substance remained largely untouched) indicates that and the recent disclosures of spying have probably pushed Germany and France into supporting it. The best Cameron can hope for would be an opt-out but even that is unlikely as it's about the single market, so even if some kind of compromise is available the courts might choose to ignore it.
Re: IPV4 best for the general public
Depending on what country, and in Europe that's everywhere apart from Germany, you're in that doesn't matter. Your ISP will happily inform the relevant parties upon request who was assigned a particular IP address. IPv6 has privacy extensions which give you more control of your addresses.
IPv6 isn't perfect and definitely needs more testing. Pity El Reg hasn't taken part in any of the IP6 days over the last few years or bother to run a dual-stack server like, say, Heise does.
My ISP finally got round to offering IPv6 last year and it is slowly becoming the standard for new connections. My router, my phones, my computers have no problems with it and it's faster when supported at both ends.
@Greg - you can't, you only think you can. There are a very, very few number of people in the world who can do multiple cognitive tasks at once, you are most likely not one of them. And, even if you are, your fiddling is almost certainly distracting people around you who might not be quite so, er, "gifted" as yourself.
The police have been investigating the affect of technical distractions such as using the phone on drivers: it seems to affect reaction time in a similar way to alcohol, texting is even worse.
Re: half-hearted outrage
Ah, there's the rub. They're more than happy to have their citizens spied upon by the NSA (as long as they get to read the reports); they're less happy when it's them being spied upon.
On the plus side, this SNAFU is going to increase the chances of the suspending the agreement on SWIFT snooping which would be a huge bargaining chip for the EU in future negotiations.
The recent spate of revelations are looking increasingly like leaks. Is it possible that someone in the current US administration is taking advantage of the Snowden situation to take the NSA, et al. down a peg or two? Would be a nice way to cut the budget a bit.
Is Andrew back
Having become increasingly disillusioned by Mr Orlowski's PR pieces for Nokia & Windows Phone it's nice to read something a little more critical.
I'm not sure if cheap Androids really will dominate this christmas: the cheap MP3 players did little to loosen Apple's grip on the market. Apple probably has no chance in the 7" segment and is giving it a wide berth but there is still a market for premium devices. But here they are right to be more worried by high-end Androids like the Samsung Note 10 than by Microsoft's ginger-headed Surface RT. Office with Outlook will no doubt persuade more buyers than the original Surface but I'm not sure if Outlook is really that appealing to consumers who are either Gmail, Facebook or WhatsApp addicts.
Skydrive is irrelevant to consumers - deals with Watchever, Netflix, et al. will be more important. I expect a lot of devices may be offered as part of 4-play deals from telephone and cable operators. Imagine a media tablet plus all-you-can-eat films and series for say £ 20 a month on top of existing subscription.
Re: You are comparing apples with oranges.
Indeed. This could be a real problem for Microsoft. What exactly is stopping Apple from replacing the ARM with x86 and installing OSX on it? And, oh look, it supports Office...
A question many of us have been asking for a while. My guess is probably that they want devices with comparable oomph to x86 machines. The A7 is getting close but you might need more cores to be okay. But MS Office wouldn't run out of the box on such a machine, it would still need compiling for ARM and it's not certain that Microsoft would be keen to do that.
Oh, and you shouldn't discount the incentives Apple still get from Intel not to ditch x86 entirely.
Re: You are comparing apples with oranges.
I agree that the Surface Pro is competing with MacBook Air devices and losing. Adding a keyboard adds another 255 g to the Microsoft bundle.
I've previously used "Ipad Pro" to refer to the same kind of device you're referring to whether it will be ARM or x86 will probably be the decider for the name. Touch is not really a requirement for a fully-fledged machine, especially when you're likely to have a high-end smartphone for use on the go. At least that's my take as someone who is looking to for such a device.
I can still see a market for high-end Windows tablets as notebook replacements but these need to be compatible with docking stations and Microsoft won't have any of those until 2014.
The operators also argued that fixed prices would lead to higher telecommunication costs - which is probably true, as operators will have to fund the risk they're taking in fixing the price.
This is very poor economics. Firstly, why was the RPI chosen as the bench? What is the relation between the RPI and the costs incurred by the operators? Secondly, by passing on the notional additional costs to consumers the operators are under no pressure to minimise them. This is reversed when they cannot simply pass on the costs: yes, they can adjust the bill to include the cost of hedging but market pressure should prevent excessive hedging and even it out over time. Exceptions, of course, for statutorily imposed charges such as VAT, but they should be covered by properly written contracts.
Apple's recent updates have been so cheap that they probably just about cover the release and distribution costs, so making Mavericks free is not much of a cost but a great headline grabber. And since 10.6 the new versions have not really added value or changed much for many users. I'm sure I'm not alone in not having rushed to install Lion (done only for the Bluetooth fix) or Mountain Lion (new API required for BusyCal). This isn't very good if you want to encourage the uptake of new APIs and possible convergence of MacOS and IOS, which is probably what is driving this release.
I'll see if this will run on the Mac Mini but give it at least a month for MacPorts to update and the first inevitable bugs to be found and fixed before I run it on my main machine.
Apple's own apps have always been a bit of a mixed bag for Apple. Some of them seem just mere technology demonstrations but others have great attention to detail. I still occasionally use IMovie to create DVDs but I think I have a version that does not do hardware encoding. Off the rest only Keynote really stands out as something worth having as it certainly benefits from being Apple's own inhouse presentation software.
When is a version a new version?
The key issue will be if and when IE 11 becomes available for Windows 7. Just as they did with IE 10 initially only being for Windows 8, Microsoft has again not done itself any favours in tying the browser to a particular version of the operating system. Until Windows 8 has reasonable takeup the stock MS browser on it will remain largely irrelevant to Google. They can even consider moving to not support Internet Explorer at all, which is largely what the extended support of Chrome for XP is about.
Technically, IE 9, 10 and 11 are all pretty close. Microsoft committed itself to a faster, more standards-compliant release strategy with IE 9. I'm sure the browser developers would themselves have loved to been able to backport the various versions to Windows XP but management scotched any such attempts.
Paid support still available
The ISS runs a special version of Windows XP (Service Pack 6) which Microsoft will continue to support. Same is true for any company prepared to pay the associated costs.
It's worth remembering that Oliver Postgate was always quite open in his support of social themes. This is glaringly obvious in series like Noggin the Nog, albeit in a postwar consensus tradition.
A lot of the remakes are bollocks but this is usually due to the style and a desire to be "modern"rather than the subjects they cover. Lebowski practising writing for the Daily Mail again.
Spare me a dime
They demand the highest service for the lowest price.
No, they have a right to demand the service as advertised and legally required.
the German market is highly competitive...
Which particular market do you have in mind? Mobile, fixed line, internet, or (cable) television? They are different things with differing degrees of competitiveness. Cable is most certainly not the most competitive with the country essentially carved up among the different operators and many people more or less obliged to pay the connection fee (€ 18 per month) once they house has been passed. This gives cable network owners quite an advantage when offering service bundles.
Re: Could make things cheaper for consumers?
In Germany at least, it's already illegal to pay to wait on hold. But don't ever think that any call centre service is every going to get cheaper for the consumer!
I guess one advantage of the service would be to confirm that you did indeed dial the correct number. But I don't think there's much advantage in this for companies over connecting someone to the electronic switchboard, which if it's correctly configured can provide branding, current information and menu choices. It could make sense for anyone wanting to use the network as as switchboard but that's one of the many boats that the operators seem to have missed.
No, Word is used as part of the editing process so change tracking and annotations are an essential part of the process and you pretty much need MS Word in that situation. I'm not going to comment on its suitability for this as I don't use it have little idea of the alternatives (presumably some kind of source control).
Comments policy works quite well
Thanks, Drew, for explanation the current policy. I think it works quite well. We get some forthright discussions on El Reg but few real flame wars - life's too short for uninformed abuse that isn't even funny. And, while the Americans might have better protection of free speech, some of them are easily scared of a few words: what the fuck is an "f-bomb"?
Waiting for Bill Ray's comment on this
Actually, I'm not.
Good to see companies taking advantage of the chance of passing on savings to their customers.
Re: Well, that's good news really...
Oh, and the colors are NOT a software issue. They can't make two identical OLED screens, the colors are different on every one. That's why they adjust the software to produce those crazy overly vivid and unrealistic colors
Did you notice that you contradicted yourself? OLED screens can be calibrated but there just hasn't been a market for it yet. It'll be interesting to see what the new TVs from Samsung and LG offer in this respect and how they perform.
Re: Well, that's good news really...
Exactly. It astonishes me that most punters cannot see the difference between a top line Plasma screen and a top line LED screen - there is really no comparison - Plasma wins every time, long before you take out the light meter and start measuring stuff.
Well, if you know something about human vision it shouldn't really astonish you. It's a bit like car sound systems and acoustics: little point in the high end for most people. When it comes to telly then ambient lighting plays a huge role in subjective image quality.
When you say LED I assume you mean LCD. Most LCD's now have LEDs for (side or back) lighting but there are very few LED TVs out there. High-end LCD TVs with LED-backlighting now have comparable blacks to plasma and as they are able to switch off individual LEDs. A decent screen that is properly set up should give good results, whatever the technology. This was borne out in the most recent set of test results I read in c't (German computer magazine). I find my Philips LCD has a much better picture than a friend's plasma.
For a while I think that plasma screens were able to maintain a significant price advantage over same size LCD screens but being forced to compete on price is what caused Panasonic to get out of the game (announced at last year's IFA).
No mention of big data
Which is nice. If 4,000 TB isn't big data then I'm not sure what is. But, then again, that's been standard for boffins of both the astronomical and atomic variety for years now and all handled with a refreshing lack of half-baked, buzzword-compatible products.
Under new management
As the handset business is being sold to Microsoft this is a material change in the business entity and only to be expected if not welcomed. You can be pretty sure that Microsoft is not buying the part that maintains Meego and Symbian, even though that might turn out to be somewhat short-sighted. Giving developers a helping hand port their stuff to Windows Phone and help their customers migrate would cost very little and could be good PR if, for example, some developers and customers become happy converts to the new system. But Microsoft obviously thinks it can do without "developers, developers, developers…"
Re: Thanks Bill
Things are significantly worse for customers in the US. Yes, you generally don't have to pay roaming charges, but call and data charges are sky high and even include paying to receive calls.
Roaming doesn't exist but until a few years ago it was not uncommon to have to buy a new phone if you went somewhere that your network didn't cover. It wasn't even a question of whether roaming would have been expensive, it wasn't technically possible all the networks had mutually incompatible networks: Verizon was on CDMA, Sprint/NextTel on IDEN, AT&T on GSM and CDMA, MetroPCS on its own stuff and only T-Mobile wholly embracing European / world standards from the onset. Even now I'm not sure if the LTE networks are compatible with each other.
As a result some shareholders have done very well out of low levels of competition and high-tariffs:
From AT&T's 2Q report:
This marked the 18th consecutive quarter AT&T has posted a year-over-year increase in postpaid ARPU
ARPU in Europe has been in terminal decline for most of this millenium and that despite the smartphone boom. And, no, this hasn't been due to regulatory burdens, just straight competition.
If you do have an American phone then roaming charges to other countries in the same free trade area, NAFTA, remain extortionate.
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