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* Posts by Mark .

1843 posts • joined 18 Jun 2009

Major blow for Apple: 'Bounce back' patent bounced back by USPTO

Mark .
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Re: @ AC hypocrites

"The Prada had a capacitive display and did not have pinch to zoom. Maybe you think of it has a gimmick or convenience feature but it basically enables viewing normal web pages on a phone, which is a pretty integral part of modern smartphones these days."

I did viewing web pages fine on my single-touch Nokia 5800, and even now on multitouch, I still use double-click most the time for zoom.

What is it that some people (particularly iphone users) are now saying about the large Android phones? "I can't use it with one hand". Okay - so how do I use pinch-zoom when holding a phone with one hand?

When it comes to using a phone one-handed, multitouch is a far bigger problem than the phone size. So whilst multitouch occasionally is of use, you want UIs to be designed for one-handed operation too, and it's a minor feature compared to having touch at all. The zoom in/out method developed by Google in Google Maps, which works with one finger, is a far better method - I only wish they'd enable this as a standard gesture throughout Android, rather than just in maps.

"I understand that the iPhone lost most feature-by-feature comparisons against other smartphones, but the UI was clearly innovative."

Lots of phones have introduced innovative things. For every iphone one, there are plenty introduced by companies like Nokia. We're not saying the original iphone was awful, just that it was ridiculously overhyped, when there were plenty of other good phones too.

You can't handwave the missing features of the original iphone as being unimportant, whilst claiming the one missing feature of the Prada is of significant importance.

"Android phone UI is dramatically closer to iOS than anything else, e.g., Prada or F700."

Not really, I see plenty in common with Symbian, as well as plenty of other platforms, even common "feature" phones. You see an icon or UI element, you click on it. Multitouch gestures/swipes are icing on the cake, that have been introduced by various platforms.

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Another iPhone passcode bypass spell revealed

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Re: But at least Samsung's bypass bug is more accessible...

I was going to write a criticism of that CNN article, but the first comment says it all:

"It's like reading a rant in a high school newspaper."

- 253 upvotes, 11 downvotes...

(The article basically sums up as "They showed women not men painting their nails, and had a woman interested in a fitness feature" along with a load of irrelevant complaining. Did CNN run an article when the iphone advert showed a female jogger?)

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Samsung's new Galaxy S 4: iPhone assassin or Android also-ran?

Mark .
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Re: What is so compelling?

Yes I was wondering this - I mean, works with gloves was first done by Nokia, hover touch was first done by Sony (I think). Is there a phone yet that does both of these together?

And I was amused when the micro SD storage was announced with an "of course" :) (I'm not sure if that was a dig at Apple, Google, HTC or all three...)

Still, it is a shame that Samsung get so much publicity when there are plenty of other top quality phones coming from Sony, HTC etc. But I guess it's a step forward when the mainstream media were only publicising the iphone, when there was never any justification for doing so.

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Mark .
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Most Android phones have standardise on microUSB, which can be used to charge, and allow a device to access the built in audio. Although yes, I can see it being a good thing for Google to push for some kind of solution; it is a shame that the audio industry has ignored this, preferring Apple. I'm amused that my smart _TV_ makes a much better home audio solution, as it can play from any kind of device via USB or wireless streaming.

Personally I find the idea of taking my phone or portable player, and having to plug it somewhere to have music in the home, a bit odd - if at home, I'd like to play from a PC too which stores most the media (the point of my portable player or phone is to stay on me, not get left in the house), and from PC or phone, it's much more easily done wireless. But still, plenty of people seem to want these options - and then spend thousands on speakers, cars etc that only work with one make of connector...

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Re: Samsung Suck at Software

"However, 90% of what makes my phone good is Android, and actually stuff written by Google or apps developers. The remaining 10% of not-uninstallable shite is all the Samsung stuff."

That doesn't quite make sense - Android provides 90% of the "good", but the remaining 10% is "shite"?

(I mean, if Samsung provide an extra 1/9th of good, then even if the majority of software is done by Google, that still seems an improvement; or if you mean the Samsung additions actively make the phone worse, then that's not so good.)

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First Samsung Galaxy S4 review leak: Stop FONDLING, start FINGERING

Mark .
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So Apple have the trademark "retina" with a lower case to refer to pixel density, and "Retina" with an upper case to refer to some of their screens. Fair enough, but if that's true, that's pretty damn confusing :)

I concede that a trademark can change it's usage - e.g., Nokia's Pureview first meaning high megapixel sensor, then being used for other technologies in the Lumia 920. But I think it's fair to clarify that statement, referring to one spec, then saying it's equal to a phone that's nowhere near that. (Plus without an objective specific thing to compare, it's all a bit vague and subjective as to how screens compare...)

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Re: Android is not an Apple killer

I'll skip the obvious flamebait, but some issues are worth addressing:

Samsung _are_ a software company too. The Samsung phones run TouchWiz, and this will run the latest version of that. No, it won't be built on the ultra-latest Android version, but neither is an Apple device. It's not reasonable to expect Samsung to build their OS and test it the moment a new Android update is released to the public (we don't get Windows PCs the moment MS release the RTM, even though they're not changing the OS). Are you also going to criticise that Android isn't already running on the latest Linux kernel a few days ago?

Samsung have had their best quarter several quarters running. But I don't see why anyone interested in a new Samsung release cares about the profits made by one company or another.

No, Android won't kill Apple. And Apple won't kill Android or Samsung either (or Nokia, come to that).

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Mark .
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"Maybe English isn't your first language? Clearly by stating the resolution and then saying "with a quality.""

Ah yes, the ad hominems. I did address that possibility in my post. As I say, the "Retina" trademark specifically refers to resolution divided by screen size, not some other notion of quality (which could be any number of things, and doesn't have one single winner - it depends what we measure, as well as personal preference). E.g., when people say the ipad mini doesn't have Retina display, they mean it doesn't match what Apple's standard of pixel density for that trademark was, and not anything to do with other aspects of "quality".

"There are a lot of aspects of display quality that you're apparently not aware of. ... and probably some more that I've forgotten."

Yes, exactly! (Though, I suppose it possible for the screens to be equal in every regard, since Samsung make the displays for both...)

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Re: Eight Cores = Ability to actually multi-task

Cores aren't directly to do with multitasking (although multitasking may be easier with more processing power, and adding more cores is an easy way to provide that extra power). Symbian had the multitasking you describe for years, always on single-core CPUs, including ones much slower than today. My Amiga did proper multitasking on a 7.14MHz single-core 68000. And Windows PCs did multitasking long before multi-cores existed...

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Mark .
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Re: Yawn - real android please...

Sounds like Google Now on Android, which the S4 will therefore have.

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Mark .
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Doesn't Sony Xperia already have the hover-touching functionality? (It already has Full HD, come to that.) Not that I'm criticising the S4, I'm excited to see what it brings - but I think it is interesting to note that there are high quality Android phones being released all year round.

"boasting 1920 x 1080 pixels with a quality the reviewer reckons is equal to Apple's Retina display."

Apple released a full HD phone? The iphone 5's resolution doesn't even match an early S3, let alone an S4. Even using their flawed metric of resolution divided by screen size (flawed because I like a larger screen, whilst this metric favours smaller screens), the S4 will be way higher. (Unless this is some alternative measure he was on about, but then, "Retina" has been a trademark that Apple have used purely to talk about resolution divided by screen size.)

Though if we want other definitions of quality, I'd still like a phone or tablet with a matte display like my Samsung netbook please - who needs pixels, when you can't see them in the sun?

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Mark .
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Re: Is this the start of the post-iPhone era?

"The online world still hasn't totally adjusted to the death of the Windows-PC-as-primary-computing device yet."

As much as I love my Android phone, the "death of the PC" is still a bit ridiculous - yes, I want them to improve websites rather than relying on "apps" for only one or two platforms; no, I don't want to use my small phone as my primary computing device.

(Well, it might be primary in terms of sales - mobile phones have long outsold PCs, whether it's dumb phones, feature phones, or Symbian smartphones of the 2000s. But I don't think higher sales means that most people are using them as their primary device - rather they upgrade more often, or people are more likely to share a PC in a household than a mobile phone.)

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Ten pi-fect projects for your new Raspberry Pi

Mark .
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Re: Is that it? @Jason

"You can try to make PCs smaller but then you end up with a $1000 Steam Box or a Mac Mini."

Though note that MicroATX form boards are commonplace, and there are plenty of small-size PC boxes. Not that I disagree with the gist of your post - in particular, these weren't around (or at least, not common) in the 1990s, so any £5 PC he finds from that era is going to be big. But there's a lot more choice than those two options.

Most people don't need a dedicated graphics card these days, meaning the days of PC cards are gone, similarly one can do away with the DVD drives.

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Mark .
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Re: Is that it?

"but it is sometimes hard to see how it's really any better than a second hand laptop or PC costing £5"

Honest question - how easy it is to get such a £5 PC? Typically second hand PC prices tend to have a lower limit that's much higher than that, even if they don't seem worth it. And anything worth less than that is likely to be thrown out, so it's a matter of luck as to whether you know someone with some old hardware to give away. Admittedly Freecycle may help - but I can see the point that, just because a 1990s PC ought to cost £5, doesn't mean I can easily get hold of one, when most of them are now lost, collecting dust, faulty or thrown out.

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BlackBerry Z10: Prices pruned despite eager iPunter interest

Mark .
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Re: Lack of Applications?

Everyone knows! Er, a shame her bank doesn't. Or the commenters criticising BB for a lack of apps; I argue this should be directed at the app developers (as with Windows only applications). I wasn't telling everyone, let alone you, I was simply mentioning a fact as part of that point.

I'm not sure that random comments on a forum constitute anything like the level of criticism when something like BBC iplayer was Windows only. Everyone knows that people say they buy iphones because of something only supporting that, but I still found it useful for the OP to make that comment.

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Mark .
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Re: Alicia Keys

But then that's an argument against every phone (such as £400 S3, £500 iphone 5), and the real question should be, why isn't the Nexus 4 dominating everything else?

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Mark .
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How's that latest TouchWiz update working out on your Nexus 4?

I have a Galaxy Nexus btw, but find this argument about the latest Android version pointless, when most phones don't run vanilla Android, and simply therefore run on different update cycles. Sure, if you want to run pure Android, that's a plus point for the Nexus, but the S3 has its own advantages. I don't see that the latest Android point releases have significant improvements anyway. It's like getting excited over Windows updates.

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Mark .
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Re: Lack of Applications?

A shame your friend doesn't change her bank, rather than her choice of phone...

This situation is sadly depressing - an unfair advantage Apple get, and something that all other platforms (not just BB) have to fight with.

I remember the uproar when a bank's site or whatever might decide to cater for "only" the mere 90% of Windows users. Yet if a bank now only provides for iphone users - never having been the number one platform, and barely ever above 20%, it seems there's silence.

Android has rocketed past the majority 50% point, now approaching 80%; Samsung Android phones alone outsell iphones by tens of millions; even one single Android device out of thousands outsells Apple's flagship (Q3 2012, the Samsung S3). Android also is now number one on non-phone tablets too. Yet it seems that the number of adverts advertising only "get this on your iphone" or "from the app store" is increasing...

(I think Google Play must have now overtaken to be number one, or will do soon? But unfortunately a lot of the bigger businesses/services still seem to be clueless about phone market share, preferring to cater for fishermen with ipads and so on.)

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MWC 2013: The Chinese are coming - and you ain't seen nothing yet

Mark .
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Re: Price Ideas?

"If they are gonna pitch at Apple prices, the battle is settled. People will buy Appl e instead."

Not really true, plenty of people buy high end Android phones, whilst plenty of Apple phone sales are made up of older iphones. Even at a high price, I'd bet Andoid still comes first.

And when you look at the specs - 5" screens, full HD, maps that work - why not? The iphone 5 just brought it in line with Android phones 18 months earlier.

Bigger competition is likely Samsung, who produce similar high end Android phones, but seem to be a lot more well known than Huawei.

Though yes, it's frustrating to see what's happened to the Nexus 4.

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Samsung Wallet slavishly copies inspired by Apple Passbook

Mark .
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Re: I agree...

"Both black. Both show tickets appearing out of a pocket (half shown)."

Wow, two pictures of tickets in a wallet both look like tickets in a wallet. And the colour black is patented now, is it?

"Now go figure and have a beer on me."

Your beer icon looks just like this other beer icon I saw! Yet I can find this third beer icon that looks completely different, just a simple line drawing, therefore your icon must be a copy, with no sense of style.

(Also, a 2007 iphone's grid of coloured icons looks like my 2005 feature phone, or a 1985 Amiga come to that.)

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Mark .
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Re: I agree...

"At least make the logo radically different if you're going to be inspired from an existing idea."

Who says they were inspired from Apple?

And why is it always everyone else who has to make things look radically different, when Apple don't have to?

Your use of "sham" makes no sense.

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Mark .
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Re: indeed

"I think you could ask 1000 people to draw a picture of a wallet and you wouldn't get anything like a simple leather pouch with some tickets stuffed into it, together, at jaunty angles."

But this isn't just a wallet, a key part of the functionality is the tickets. So the test would be to ask people to draw a wallet with some tickets in it. Yes, you would get similar (and the only differences would be if their drawing skill wasn't as good as a professional graphic artist).

"Second, saying that there's basically only one way for a clock to look shows a startling ignorance of IP/copyright/trademark law. "

Well, I guess a 2007 iphone is in violation for looking like earlier phones, by that logic.

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Mark .
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Re: indeed

I agree. The evidence present by this article is so hilarious, I think it's either a parody, or just flamebait. Let's see:

"Guess what Passbook uses – yup, bar codes."

Bar codes? My god, did all the items at the local shop also copy Apple too, with their lavish use of *bar codes*?

Then we have the comparison of icons. Google only looks different because it looks nothing recognisable like a wallet. MS is only different because it's an overly simplified representation. Apple and Samsung look similar, because they're both more realistic images of a wallet and tickets. Many tickets have cutouts.

Guess what, if I take a photo of my wallet, it also looks like a wallet. Apple copied my wallet!

I wasn't aware that Apple now have a patent on the colours green, yellow and blue (though given the rounded-corners, who knows).

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Google+ goes single sign-in, exec roasts Zuck's 'frictionless sharing'

Mark .
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Re: Still enforcing "real names"?

Says "JDX" - is that your real name? Your Register account will be banned until you provide legal documentation showing this.

(Your passport analogy is meaningless - I don't need a passport to leave a Google Play rating, or comment on a website, nor would I want such a requirement. Are you seriously suggesting those things should have the same level of security as entering another country?)

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Mark .
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Also for Google Play reviews now

My thoughts too, especially how atrocious their enforcement of it is (claiming it's okay to use a name you're commonly known by, but then banning people for unusual names even if it is their common or legal name) - but I'm also worried that Google have now restricted Google Play reviews to Google+ accounts.

All the usual arguments about real names apply here: yes, there's some argument about having accountability for reviews, but there are plenty of reasons for wanting privacy (suppose it's an app for a gay dating website, and someone doesn't want to be outed, or have their pseudonym on that site linked to their real name) (also if you use a pseudonym on a website, and there's an app for it, it's actually less anonymous to leave a review with that same pseuodnym). As a developer, I also don't like this change, as it means people are less likely to leave reviews (I like getting good reviews!) Also, the dumb 1 star "it didn't download" reviews tend to be sincere, even if misguided - so requiring a real name won't stop this, these reviews aren't the result of trolling.

But there's also a far bigger additional problem - it means to leave a review, your Google+ Real Name account is now linked to your Google account/phone. So the idea of using a Google account specific to your phone (as I and many others do) goes out the window, as it'll be linked with your real name and that other account anyway.

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That Firefox OS mobe: The sorta phone left behind after a mugging

Mark .
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Re: A somewhat harsh editorial...

"Even the mighty Android and iOS had issues when they were first launched and had extremely small markets for their first year or so."

It's also worth noting that iphone's 2nd place really is very recent - the history of smartphones has really been Symbian, then Android, with iphone mostly in 3rd, 4th or 5th place. It pipped into 2nd with Symbian being dropped, and BB's loss in share, but it's really more than Android has come to dominate, now at near 80% share. (Indeed, the gap between iphone and Android is far greater than iphone and whoever's in 3rd place.)

And whilst Android grew rapidly after its first year, it took iphone around 3 or 4 years to get anywhere near comparable to other platforms.

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"Then came Apple’s charge into the industry, and the industry’s response, first with lookalikes then with workalikes."

The 2007 iphone looked and worked like my 2005 feature phone (with a grid of coloured icons), and it took Apple years to add the features like apps and copy/paste that other platforms had. But nothing like a nice rewrite of history...

"It is exactly what you’d expect from an iPhone clone in 2009"

What's a 2009 iphone clone - one that still couldn't multitask?

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Nexus 1 put in orbit to prove 'in space, no one can hear you scream'

Mark .
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I agree - they also say "They hope to use a purpose-built app to test the theory, immortalised in the film Alien, that "in space no-one can hear you scream"."

Which again sounds more like "theory" in its sloppy non-scientific use, in particular, the way they say "the theory", suggesting there is a specific scientific theory of "in space no-one can hear you scream". It also again carries the implication that this is still a matter of debate.

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Re: "Theory" - in science

A theory is more than conjecture.

But theories never become laws - a law is more like a "rule of thumb", such as a relation between observed behaviour. The law of gravity is the equation, the theory of gravity is the model that explains it. Laws can be incorrect - e.g., gas laws don't work in practice.

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Mobile operators look to Firefox to beat back Google, Apple

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Re: I'm not sure what you mean by "Operator apps"

So applications on phones today in 2013 are better than in 2005, and you say that's because the latter were "operator apps"?

It couldn't possibly be due to the change in technology... (most phone games today look roughly comparable to computer games of around 1990, so if 8 years ago they were like a Vic 20, I'd say that's roughly matching the state of progress - interestingly phones are capable of a lot more, having the computing power of desktops within the last 10 years, but most games don't take advantage of that).

Yes, it's true that "apps" offered by websites or companies are rubbish, but then I'm not sure what that's got to do with phone network operators. Indeed, your argument seems contradictory - first you say "operator apps" are bad because they were worse than what you can get on an iphone today, then you say "operator apps" are bad, because there are bad apps on an iphone today...

"If you could only get apps from your Operator"

Note that this was never, at least not on my Vodafone phone - the operator portal was offered in addition to apps I could download anywhere on the Internet. I agree making it so you can only download from one place is a bad thing, thankfully only iphone does that.

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Mark .
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Re: operators gave away all their apps revenue

Not really, as a developer and user, I like the choice on Android to submit to different places, and download from different places (e.g., there's F Droid, focused on Open Source, which is normally difficult to find on Google Play, having to wade through all the applications where "free" means "laden with adverts").

I'm not sure what you mean by "Operator apps" - this isn't talking about the ones stuffed on your phone, but the portals like Vodafone Live years ago, where even on a feature phone you could download or buy games, apps, videos as well as read news. (Meanwhile, an original iphone couldn't even run apps.) Of course there was a lot less then than now, as would be expected with the change and improvements in technology.

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Given how prominently the networks seem to advertise iphones (whilst the better selling Android phones get less space on the windows), it seems their own fault.

"Of course one of the things that made iPhone a success was that it was focused in its vision and not designed by consent."

I'm not sure that's true, let alone an "of course" - Symbian was the number one operating system until 2011, with Android being number one since then. Apart from a transitionary period, Symbian had greater than 50% for many years, with Android now having a whopping 80% market share.

Meanwhile, the "focused on their vision" platforms - IOS, Windows Phone - seem far less successful in comparison.

"With the past history of failures in anything co-operative"

Really? Well sure, if you're one of these people who think that iphone is number one (it never was - yet it was deemed a "success" for selling 1 million in 76 days, which is tiny compared to Symbian or Android sales), and think that no one bought or buys Symbian or Android. The reality speaks different.

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Nokia opens Maps to rivals, flogs uber-budget €15 phone

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Re: Puzzled

Yes, I have used it, that's how I knew about it(!)

Sure, you can awkwardly arrange 3 of your slots to cover nothern England, and then still not have enough for other places in the world you might want to travel to. And it's hopeless if you'll be driving across Europe, or around a wide area in the US, say. Meanwhile, on Nokia Maps I just clicked the countries or continents I wanted - none of this "arrange 3 of my limited number of slots to cover part of a country".

The fact that it only comes to less than 200MB is exactly my point - if I have GBs free, why can't I use it?

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Re: Puzzled

On Google maps, "offline maps" means you can select a few city-sized regions at a time. And there's a hard coded limit on the number (I forget how many, less than 10), even if you have GBs of storage free!

On Nokia maps, "offline maps" means you select what maps you want, countries or continents at a time, or even the whole world if you want.

The Google method means you have to know in advance - that's feasible if you're just travelling to a city, but not if you'll be travelling about in the country. Also it's much easier to just always store entire countries/continents/the world, rather than having to update every time you go travelling.

(I use Android, but still waiting for this feature 7 years after Nokia did it.)

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Re: Specs

Wait, did you seriously criticise a 15 euro phone, for being thicker than a £500 phone? (Also the volume of a 109 may well be pretty small anyway - when a phone is that small, it's harder to make it thin too.)

There was a time when a phone couldn't do things like apps at all. Like year 2000-era £15 phones, or a 2007 iphone.

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Re: Nokia NEVER learn

Quite right - iphone 5 is better than iphone 4, iphone 4 is better than iphone 4S - wait. But still we know that iphone 4/4S was better than 3GS (not to be confused with a Samsung GS3, or indeed a Stargate SG-3) which was better than an iphone 3S, sorry, iphone 3G, which was better than iphone 2. Hang on a moment.

But yes, it's true, of course everyone knew that the iphone 5 would be the next one after iphone 4, that's why the media were going on about it for 18 months, when actually the 4S was released instead.

Still, looking forward to the iphone 6, or iphone 5S, or iphone 4G, in whichever order they come.

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You've made an app for Android, iOS, Windows - what about the user interface?

Mark .
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Re: Silver Bullet syndrome

Though cross-platform toolkits are still useful - even if you still give attention and tweaks to different platforms, it's much better than rewriting everything from scratch each time.

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Fondling again: HP slates new tablet for April

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You can get an ipad mini with a card slot and Nexus 7 price ... and a good screen, come to that?

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Mark .
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Re: Looks like a Nexus 7 clone...

That $30 is more than enough to buy a 32GB microSD (around £10 last time I looked), giving a 40GB tablet compared to a 16GB one. Or shove in a 64GB card for even more storage.

The 7" tablets that do have microSD all seem to be similarly specced to the HP one (as well as being no name brands, so HP may do better on that front), except for ones that involve ordering from China.

Though I would love for a mainstream manufacturer to produce a Nexus 7 level tablet with either microSD, or 64GB storage. (The recently announced Note 8 might qualify, though it's likely to be way more expensive.)

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Cheap iPhone mini 'makes sense' for world domination

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Re: NO! It doesn't make sense. It would ruin Apple!

Given the number of chavs waving Apple phones around, I'd say they've already reached the Burberry point. Also consider the cheapo ipods they happily sell. Go to any cheap store in the US, and you'll see the stock of cheap ipod and iphone tat. People think of them as Ferraris and Armani, but the reality is not at all like this (also consider, Ferrarri and Armani don't need to slap big light up logos over their stuff - you know what the products are, or if you don't, you're not their target market).

"Yeah, I get that some people - and perhaps the majority of reg readers - don't but into this schtick, but millions of bozos others do."

Well that's the problem with the RDF - they could sell a £50 turd, and people would still consider it prestige - though yes, they'd rather get away with selling £500 turds while they can.

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Blackberry Z10 sales fail to impress analysts

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Re: RIM is hanging, alright...

Well actually if Amiga (the company) had introduced a new OS a decade and a half ago (rather than minor updates, or a port to PPC far more recently than 15 years ago), it might have been something. And before 1996, the Amiga was solely a product, not a company.

Not sure what you mean by real smartphones and not Blackberries, sounds like a No True Scotsman...

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Re: Blame the Marketing Dept

Although the real question is why the Nexus 4 isn't trashing over every other phone - why pay £400 for an S3 (which has microSD, but that's about it), or £500 for an Apple iphone 5? Google/LG need to step up their marketing (and supply).

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Chromebook app launcher touted to Chrome browser users

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ChromeOS looks more like a "real" OS

Despite being "just a browser", if I can launch applications directly, if I can install them and run them offline, that pretty much makes it as useful an OS for most people - who cares if behind the scenes it's mostly done in HTML5. And with Google Native Client, it's possible to write applications in languages like C++ (with a HTML5 front end, similar to how Android does native languages with Java). You don't even need a Chromebook - ChromiumOS is Free.

From a development point of view, using HTML5 (with Native Client if you'd rather stick with C++) looks an increasingly useful way to write portable code across Windows, OS X, Linux and ChromeOS. This new launcher is a useful step to make such applications appear as "installed" applications that run offline, rather than only running in a web browser (although the option to run in a web page is still a useful ability).

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Re: deja vu

I was going to say - "looks just like a phone home screen"? - looks just like any computer screen back before the introduction of things like start menus... My Amiga had a grid of coloured icons in 1985 :)

(Also still looks like most people's Windows desktops.)

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New blow for Microsoft Surface: Touch Chromebooks 'on sale in 2013'

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Re: "Blow"?

Even the Surface Pro is likely to be cheaper than this by the looks of it. Given that the cheap Surface haters seem to have resorted to "it's too expensive" for the Pro version, despite the Chromebooks being competition, this does provide a marketing boost to the Surface Pro (as well as the help from raising awareness of touchscreen PCs in general).

(Personally I'm not likely to buy either of these devices, but still think it's good to see competition and choice.)

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Google takes Chromebook upmarket with touchy-feely Pixel

Mark .
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I'm not sure how you mean - I mean yes, I'd rather run Windows (or Linux) than ChromeOS any day. But if people are buying Chromebook laptops instead of other laptops (and they are), it's competition.

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Mark .
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I think it makes a lot of sense - whilst low cost Chromebooks will bring ChromeOS to the masses, even though this Pixel will sell far less, they make much bigger profits. And looking at the people with Apple Airs, there are certainly people willing to spend over £1000 for a laptop even if it's just for things like web and email, maybe some word processing or games, all of which can be done on a Chromebook. I believe it supports offline - the "restrictiveness" is more that it only supports HTML5 for applications, which makes it harder to port software, and makes it less interesting to programmers like me unless I were to switch entirely to writing HTML5 applications - but most people aren't developers, and given the sales, I'm sure increasing numbers of applications will be written for it. (See https://chrome.google.com/webstore for what's already there.)

Indeed, whilst ChromeOS is obvious competition for Windows, I think Apple have more to worry about: people often buy them because they think PC laptops are bulky, and only Apple do ultra-portables - now Chromebooks are getting a lot of coverage; people who don't want Windows/MS now have a better alternative; people who think having as many pixels as possible is important now have a better alternative; raising the awareness and acceptance of touchscreen laptops makes MS look more like they made the right move, with Apple having to choose between following after with this functionality, or never having it; plus those rocketing Chromebook sales could put Mac OS into 3rd place - even if they don't actually lose any sales to it, marketing-wise that's a bad thing for them.

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Mark .
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Re: it does mention battery life...

Often these ratings are measured along the lines of "whilst running full screen video", so you might get a bit more out of them with say web browsing.

Though yes - people can moan about Atom being slow, but I'll gladly keep my 10 hour battery life on my Samsung netbook :) (And if I'm at home and want performance, I'll take my i7 and NVIDIA Clevo laptop.)

To be fair, this is no worse than any other Intel Core based laptop. And it's good to see more choice and competition in laptops. (Though I do wonder how much extra battery the high resolution saps - still, for people who think that pixels is the only thing that matters, it'll stop Apple getting all those sales.)

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Apple files 'iWatch' patent application

Mark .
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"so the flexible display as described in the application is described as being able to adjust the amount of information that it presents to the user based on how much of the display is viewable when worn."

In other words, bog standard UI window-resizing behaviour.

I look forward to a whole load of new patents where existing technology/ideas are taken, with "on a wrist" added. If you don't even have to make it, perhaps we should all get in on the action.

Of course watches that can communicate with Android devices already exist. And yes, didn't Apple already try to make a watch-ipod, which turned out to be a fail?

(Also wondering where they'll put the big light up Apple logo - can't have an Apple product without plastering Apple logos to advertise all over it.)

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Mark .
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Re: This is worth a patent?

My thoughts too - don't you have to make something to patent it?

I also wasn't aware Apple were into manufacturing displays, let alone flexible one. If computerised watches finally take off (something often predicted in visions of the future, when instead mobile computing converged onto phones) due to flexible displays, it'll be thanks to technology made by the likes of Samsung, judging by their recent announcements and demos.

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