Feeds

* Posts by Fihart

810 posts • joined 3 Jun 2008

Page:

Tim Cook: The classic iPod HAD TO DIE, and this is WHY

Fihart
Silver badge

Re: Apple killed the competition then deliberately dumped the market...

@ Adam 1

Music problem with most phones I've owned is that they don't seem to support folders. Personally I rip my existing CDs into album folders and can't be fagged to tag each track.

So unless there's folder support I end up with a list that reads Track 01 Track 01 Track 01 almost ad infinitum.

For all its sins (iTunes for one) at least the iPod supports folders -- not that I use mine as the battery is going and it's a faff to replace.

2
4

Rise of the machines: Silicon Valley hardware store to deploy ROBOTS for customer service

Fihart
Silver badge

You mean they don't already ?

Just visit a McDonalds.

1
1

Microsoft brings the CLOUD that GOES ON FOREVER

Fihart
Silver badge

Microsoft's whole business model.

@HandleOfGod

"However I've made my choice and spent weeks uploading stuff now so I'll stick with it for now."

Mainly inertia which keeps us using their products.

5
1

SHOW ME THE MONEY! Ballmer on Amazon: 'They're not a real biz, they make NO cash'

Fihart
Silver badge

Over a cliff.

I don't think anyone is accusing Jeff Bezos of driving Amazon over a cliff.

Steve Ballmer, Microsoft more so.

6
0

‘For the love of Pete, America, learn about decent chocolate’

Fihart
Silver badge

Not chocolate.

Have to agree, but Californians (for example) just don't eat confectionery. Lots of sweet carbonated drinks, but chocolate never. In fact when in LA I discovered an English-run bakery that had actual buns and small cakes. Offered them to puzzled workmates, all refused.

In fact, LA has English grocery stores with essential like decent tea bags, marmalade and Marmite.

On the plus side, US has cheap champagne, cheap decent ice cream, sour-dough bread, blueberry jam, Laura Scudder peanut butter (the best PB I've ever found).

0
0

Wanna hop carriers with your iPad's Apple SIM? AVOID AT&T

Fihart
Silver badge

Softly, softly..............

"Apple SIMs ship pre-installed in the iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3 but can be removed with a tool that comes with each device."

Apple's way of gently introducing the software SIM.

Next generation they will announce that 90% of users didn't bother to change the SIM ("oh, the tool was that plastic thing I left in the box which I later threw away ?") and would "prefer the convenience" of a software SIM.

2
1

Chipmaker FTDI bricking counterfeit kit

Fihart
Silver badge

This is a bit like chipped batteries and refills.

Panasonic (Lumix) and the inkjet manufacturers started this kind of nonsense, fed up with people buying cheap substitutes for overpriced replacement batteries and refills.

Rather than penalise consumers for doing what retailers lead them to do (i.e. look for the apparent best buy) the manufacturers should have gone after the makers of fake refills and batteries using trademark and IP law.

But of course that takes time and money.

4
1

Apple's new iPADS have begun the WAR that will OVERTURN the NETWORK WORLD

Fihart
Silver badge

Re: The simple way to avoid this.. @Beau

"Well, in Belgium it is all ready illegal to sell a locked phone!............."

I thought that. My bro lives there. But was corrected when I asserted it on this forum some months ago.

Be interesting to know whether Belgium still stands up to the telco bullies -- I gather its other consumer protection laws are pretty feeble.

0
0
Fihart
Silver badge

Do some phones and tablets lock to first provider ?

My impression from complaints about Samsung Note (?) was that it and iPhones could lock to the first provider whose SIM was inserted. This applies to other devices advertised as SIM-free rather than unlocked.

In effect, does the Apple virtual SIM slightly undo that problem ?

0
0

Is living with Dolby Atmos worth the faff?

Fihart
Silver badge

Been there, done that -- in the 1970s.

Back when I had more money than sense the hifi industry came up with a way of selling twice as many speakers and amplifiers and the record companies hoped we would all buy duplicates of existing albums -- in Quadraphonic Stereo !!!

In reality, having three competing systems; SQ (Sony, Columbia, EMI) QS (Sansui, ABC Records) and CD4 (Panasonic, WEA) was guaranteed to be self defeating. And the results were gimmicky, distracting and technically far from perfect, sometimes with added record surface noise and unintended phasing effects.

It was a relief to return to regular two-speaker stereo. While I am sure that modern multi-channel systems are much better, the added wiring and hardware issues remain.

0
0

Same old iPad? NO. The new 'soft SIMs' are BIG NEWS

Fihart
Silver badge

Re: Vendor lock in

A very good point.

In past if phone broke or battery failed, you could swap the SIM into your old phone and you'd be back in business instantly. Apple have systematically sabotaged that option by (in my view otherwise pointlessly) changing the SIM's format.

6
0

Down-under record: Australian gets $140k for pussy

Fihart
Silver badge

Unfair

The couple were criticised for selling the cat on grounds that new owners would cause it stress.

Cats actually value their territory more than any people who happen to be in it.

Witness the disorientation and instinct to hide of a cat moved to a new home -- as would have happened if the couple had sold the house and moved with cat to new home.

6
0

EE TV brings French broadband price war to the UK

Fihart
Silver badge

They just don't get it ?

From a grumpy consumer's viewpoint, none of these telcos quite understand that some (many?) don't want;

1) Bundled TV

2) Bundled sport

3) Thousands of "free" texts (how many can normal people send in one month ?)

4) "Free" cinema tickets

5) Subsidised (locked) phones.

6) 24 month contracts

4) Anything else bundled that obfuscates pricing while, presumably, raising the cost of provision.

While I welcome a price war within this otherwise cosy cartel. let's have a war about prices, not add-ons.

32
0

Gates and Ballmer NOT ON SPEAKING TERMS – report

Fihart
Silver badge

Re: Never a good idea..... @ PeterM42

In many large companies it's normal to spend time selling at the coalface before being considered for advancing on the exec ladder. Usually it's essential if a company is not to produce only what the engineers deem fit and the bean counters will countenance..

That works in normal competitive markets, but one has to wonder when Microsoft is/was such a blatant monopoly. Typical of monopoly thinking was the purchase and gutting of Nokia in order to force a previously unwanted phone technology onto the market.

As for wrecking the Windows cash-cow in order to barge into the tablet market, predictably a disaster.

4
0

AT&T to fork out less than two days' profit in bogus bill charge flap

Fihart
Silver badge

Telcos a nasty cartel.

The sort of plain dishonesty and contempt for user displayed by these telcos should be dealt with by jailing the directors for fraud. Fines are just a levy on shareholders and barely touch the perpetrators.

I'm still furious that T-Mob raised PAYG text price by 20% when the actual cost of a text is so miniscule it apparently cannot be calculated.

5
0

Music-mad Brits drive up hardware sales too – claims BPI

Fihart
Silver badge

TV as background

How crap does a telly program have to be that viewers are listening to music while it's on.

Of course these could be the kind who just have the set on as company.

1
0

Facebook apologizes for binning accounts of drag queens

Fihart
Silver badge

Fakebook.

If Facebook just dumped all the accounts in pets' names they'd lose a fair percentage of users.

Don't know why they chose to focus on a sexual lifestyle when, presumably, there are actual fraudsters out there.

0
2

Windows 10: One for the suits, right Microsoft? Or so one THOUGHT

Fihart
Silver badge

Re: What about Windows 9? @Steven Raith

According to Wiki, Aston Martin named their car the DB9 instead of DB8 in case it seemed it was only available with a V8 -- and as they felt the 9 indicated that it was not an evolution from the 7 but a new design.

1
0
Fihart
Silver badge

Re: What about Windows 9?

What about Aston Martin DB8 ? Went straight from DB7 to DB9.

Perhaps to avoid a model which became known as the "Deviate" and jokes from Clarkson if it ran wide on corners.

1
0

That glass of water you just drank? It was OLDER than the SUN

Fihart
Silver badge

Someone tell Sainsbury's

........ "significant fraction of the big drink was created more than 4.5 billion years ago".

Yet they still put sell-by dates on bottled water.

1
1

CURSE YOU, 'streaming' music services! I want a bloody CD

Fihart
Silver badge

Re: have an upvote

Add the unfairly neglected Spanish composers -- Falla, Albeniz, Rodrigo, Turina, Granados.

0
0
Fihart
Silver badge

Bah, humbug.

You can keep yer streaming nonsense. I realised long ago (circa the first Walkman in 1980 ?) that I didn't really need music on the go. It was fun for a few minutes but soon I didn't even notice it. And with ambient noise on the street in London or on public transport, impossible without damaging my hearing.

So, though I have all the necessary gear to rip even vinyl to MP3, I generally listen via CD at home with minimum distractions. As used CDs have recently sold for between 50p and £2, my collection has swelled greatly.

Supplies are inevitably drying up so I suspect that once the penny drops that CD offers convenience and quality, they may become more sought-after than vinyl.

14
3

Putin tells Google, Twitter, Facebook: Have a vodka and censorship on the rocks

Fihart
Silver badge

Re: Do they even have Russian market share?

Information is the enemy of oppression.

Though China has thriving social networks, on an educational trip there my young relative did a thriving trade in showing local students how to set up a VPN and access Facebook.

5
1

Good grief! Have you SEEN BlackBerry's SQUARE smartphone?

Fihart
Silver badge

Price is a problem.

BB could (judging by the sheer quantity of comments here) have a hit on their hands. But the price has to be closer to £400 to compete with the likes of the HTC One.

Though I would never spend even that kind of money, have to say it ticks the right boxes -- a big screen and a physical keyboard.

2
0

Let it go, Steve: Ballmer bans iPads from his LA Clippers b-ball team

Fihart
Silver badge

The guy's a nightmare.

This is as stupid as Coca Cola firing as exec spotted buying a Pepsi.

21
0

Move over, Apple Pay: Tesco trials PayQwiq phone-flash pay app

Fihart
Silver badge

Re: Hmmm

I think the shine went off that one when those with contactless credit cards found money being accidentally taken by Oyster card machines at tube stations.

Friend then had struggle getting refund, bank swapped new card for old style version.

0
0
Fihart
Silver badge

Like PayQwiq but Qwiqer.

Walk in, get stuff, hand over cash, get change, get out.

Incidentally, has anyone else spotted that Sainsbury's new self-serve machines are slower than the old models. Have to touch screen to pay and then it sits there and thinks before spitting out change.

Old machines realised you'd finished when you stuck in money.

At least the new machines calculate any two-fer-one type discounts before calculating total. Old machines would display full price total, only deducting discount once you'd paid. Always wondered what would happen if you only had the correct money.

0
0

EE buys 58 Phones 4u stores for £2.5m after picking over carcass

Fihart
Silver badge

Looking on the bright side...

Where EE already has a branch, that will be one less phone shop on the high street. Now, if we can just get rid of betting shops and estate agents, our shopping streets will be relatively scum-free, making space for something more useful.

7
0

Top Gear Tigers and Bingo Boilers: Farewell then, Phones4U

Fihart
Silver badge

Don't fall into those pre-defined roles.

You do, but you just don't know it.

Seriously though, these primitive (but needlessly complex) ways of expressing target audience are the domain of marketing graduate product managers whose powerpoint-think is the bane of life for ad agencies.

Granted, the visual mnemonic fingers for phones 4 U memorably summarises both the name and the chav target, but by and large creative pros in agencies ignore all "research" and follow their instincts.

2
0

Microsoft staff brace for next round of layoffs – expected Thursday

Fihart
Silver badge

Re: @billat29

"If I could buy W7 at a reasonable price, say $100-$150, and install it on my XP system without losing anything, and without having to find and re-install all those convenient programs that I've accumulated over the past 6 years, I would seriously consider it."

One problem with this idea as applied to Windows is that your existing install is already so corrupted or stuffed with cruft that a reformat and reinstall is the best upgrade you can make (even if you only reinstall the existing version of Windows).

3
1

Get your Indian Landfill Android One handsets - they're only SIXTY QUID

Fihart
Silver badge

Dual-sim.

As long as handset retail is dominated by the telco cartel you won't see dual-sim phones in UK. After all, how would that serve the telco's interests ?

6
0

Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water

Fihart
Silver badge

Asset stripping business as usual.

My understanding from the financial pages. P4U bought at distress price by private equity chaps who cut costs and flogged off assets just enough to attract bond buyers. Bond was used to pay pe chaps, leaving the business too weak to withstand debt burden, price cuts and inevitable drift of telcos towards direct sales. Each supplier pullout made P4U less viable. Bond holders and staff lose everything, customers lose choice, pe chaps lol.

No different to the 1970s "unacceptable face of capitalism" or buy-to-let property predators of today.

For what it's worth, my experiences of P4U and Craphone Whorehouse were no worse than telco shops -- in fact the latter was as helpful as local Voda.

3
0

iPhone 6, Watch: Hate it or really hate it, Apple's now a $604.77bn biz

Fihart
Silver badge

Solution or problem ?

"...............the Apple Watch, a $349 problem looking for a solution."

Surely the author meant "a solution looking for a problem" ?

3
1

BBC Trust candidate defends licence fee, says evaders are CRIMINALS

Fihart
Silver badge

Little of worth on TV.

Less that's worth the licence fee. As for commercial TV -- the ad breaks grow, the ads grow in idiocy.

Seems that TV was a 20th century phenomenon, killed off by greed and stupidity.

3
0

Jony Ive: Apple iWatch will SCREW UP Switzerland's economy

Fihart
Silver badge

Won't happen.

Swiss watches weren't sunk by;

a) Japanese (Seiko, Citizen, Casio).

b) Trendy plastic watches. Swatches actually made in Switzerland.

c) Digital watches.

d) Electronic analogue-face watches.

e) People who don't wear a watch because their phone has a clock.

If anything, the appearance of electronics has upped the prestige of mechanical watches -- allowing the Swiss to charge premium prices.

2
0

Virgin Media blocks 'wankers' from permissible passwords

Fihart
Silver badge

Political Correctness Gone Mad (again) !

Surely the point of a password is that no-one sees it apart from its creator.

Or is this to spare the blushes of Virgin's staff if they pry on customers' accounts ?

1
0

Google could be a great partner for Iliad in its quest for T-Mobile

Fihart
Silver badge

Sounds familiar.

Who remembers the Rabbit phone (from, I think, Hutchison Telecom) ? A glorified cordless phone with base stations at bus stops, high street shops, as well as at home.

Never caught on as cellular mobile became omnipresent (at least in urban areas).

4
0

Britain's housing crisis: What are we going to do about it?

Fihart
Silver badge

The real issues.

The issues in UK housing are fairly obvious.

Internal North to South migration due to lack of regional economic development. Weakly controlled immigration from outside EU, uncontrolled immigration from within EU. Selling off stock by social housing providers, both Councils and Housing Associations -- sales often end up in the hands of commercial landlords.

Permitting buy to let mortgages in a generally poor economy that makes property a better investment than productive, job creating, businesses. Tenants (and landlords) are ripped off by predatory letting agents. Landlords are often leaseholders and are ripped off by predatory freeholders. Result; even higher housing costs.

Rent control has one particular benefit (aside from reducing rent inflation and improving security of tenure) -- it forces less efficient or greedier landlords to sell off their portfolios, creating opportunities for first time owner-occupiers.

In London there are several tenant rights groups (notably in Camden and Brent and the national Generation Rent). If you want things to change, join one.

0
1

Pay to play: The hidden cost of software defined everything

Fihart
Silver badge

Re: Data is born free but is everywhere in chains. @ Kraggy

I think it fair to point out that the examples I gave are to do with products that the customer has already paid for. Firmware updates are, for example, often made available to fix manufacturers' screwups.

2
0
Fihart
Silver badge

Data is born free but is everywhere in chains.

I vowed never to buy a Plextor CD writer after finding that firmware updates were apparently only available to those who who had registered the warranty. Useless as I'd bought secondhand.

A privately authored net page showing how to renew the drive and laser in an expensive Arcam hifi CD player for £10 instead of the £200 (obviously including labour) charged by the manufacturer was marred by finding a link to a service manual pdf had been severed. Perhaps copyright issues, but bloody-minded nevertheless.

Fortunately, these are rare exceptions to the well-intended (if not always perfect) web support offered by other large and small manufacturers the world over.

2
0

EE accused of silencing customer gripes on social media pages

Fihart
Silver badge

Re: still deleting posts over at EE's online community @macladd

I'd forgotten about the EE user forum. I had joined the T Mobile one but they merged this with the Orange one and dumped all the users. I can't remember whether I could be bothered to rejoin the resulting EE forum, which shows how useful the T Mob forum had been.

Like many such, was full of know-alls competing to win points (I think, to get discounts). So posts tended to be either "this company sucks" or bland pro-company replies from moderators and points-seeking stooges. I doubt if the company took any notice of forum comments.

Public platforms such as Fbook and Twit are more effective at pressuring errant companies.

0
0
Fihart
Silver badge

Re: Billing issues. @ Thomas 6

Precisely. That's why I regarded their response as fair.

In fact a nagging issue was caused by something that was never identified (their suggestion was a glitch in Picture Messaging). Solution provided by phone shop was, if one has problems with random billing, switch off Data or x out Access Point Names.

0
0
Fihart
Silver badge

Billing issues.

Last year EE got into serious trouble with customers over PAYG balances and there was a firestorm of criticism on Facebook. In their defence it was sorted out fairly soon after. I've had various other issues with T Mobile (aka EE) making apparently random deductions, usually to do with apps updating unasked and once with an accidental dial (thanks touchscreen). In all cases the company has responded to online complaints or letters and, I think, quite fairly.

I do deplore that EE have no e-mail complaints procedure and charge for calls to customer support. The telcos are a cartel and their charges need to made more transparent and seriously curbed.

6
1

China hopes home-grown OS will oust Microsoft

Fihart
Silver badge

Welcome, RSOD.

Red Screen of Death.

8
0

No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate

Fihart
Silver badge

We laughed at the Nazis.

What are ISIS if not fascists ? Young Muslims here need reminding that joining Oswald Mosley's blackshirts in the 1930s didn't work out so well either.

6
1

Brit Sci-Fi author Alastair Reynolds says MS Word 'drives me to distraction'

Fihart
Silver badge

Big and not clever.

Word for Windows (version 2 or whatever) did the job. Since then the program has multiplied in size. Doubtless, lazy coding and adding stupid features -- I get angry when Word starts capitalising words or creating bullet points, unasked.

When I first started computing, Superwriter supplied free with the Apricot would run from a floppy disk with room left for documents. In fact, I ran it from a virtual disk, so it started instantly. Word now comes on a DVD ??

Oh and Word versions recently started saving .doc files as .docx just to madden us further. Hopefully, the subscription sales model will kill it off.

10
1

'Video on internet may not be entirely truthful': Times headline

Fihart
Silver badge

Re: This is why @ William Boyle

Well said, I'm afraid.

Once tried updating XP on line and it took hours and eventually timed out. Adding patches from CD less problematic but (as I recall) main result was XP slowed down and networking had added faffing thanks to changes to whether firewall needed to be on or off for new connections. Oh, USB2 worked after update. That's all.

0
0

Cult of T-Mob US wants you to INDOCTRINATE your friends and family

Fihart
Silver badge

Wouldn't work here.

At least not with my friends. Having heard me bleating about T Mob issues, aren't likely to suddenly accept my recommendation to join T Mob.

0
0

Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media

Fihart
Silver badge

ISIS -- a Manson gang for our times.

The Woodstock ethic worked when it was middle class kids dropping acid and dressing like dropouts. Once deluded people like Charlie picked up on it things got nasty.

In Europe there's been a fairly harmless fad for teenage Muslim girls to adopt headscarves, but when cretins like the one in the video pick up on Islamist ideas things inevitably turn deadly.

3
1

Page: