* Posts by Mark .

1859 posts • joined 18 Jun 2009

Lost phone? Google's got an app for that, coming this month

Mark .
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We've been hearing about these surveys for years, but despite this, Android continues to rocket ahead in market share, whilst iphone share flails and now this year has plummetted. The gap between even WP and iphone is now far smaller than between iphone and Android.

Wake me up when these so-called surveys actually translate in a mass shift towards Apple's feature phones, because it hasn't happened in 7 years of overwhelming media hype. That's a fail.

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Re: Just get an iPhone for gods sake.

Let's argue back like an Apple user: But it doesn't matter that Android doesn't have this feature, because I never use it, therefore no one does, and in fact Android is better off by not having it, because it has another way of doing the same thing, a whole new paradigm (though I'm not going to explain what it is). I don't care about grumpy featurism, Android is therefore still better. It did everything first, and Apple users need to be thankful of that. And Android Android Android Android Android, posted from my Android phone.

(Only 3 years behond? Did you finally get copy and paste, or 3G and apps yet?)

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Moto X: It's listening to you. But can voice control finally take off?

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Re: battery life

I think that's spot on - this may be nothing of interest compared to Nexuses or S4s, but I think this is much about marketing and reaching out to people not yet buying Android. Whilst Android has won everywhere else, iphone still has a sizable share in the US. Unlike Samsung, Motorola is well known as an American company, and the Nexus line doesn't yet have the same kind of brand awareness. On top of that you've got the "assembled in the US" (or whatever) advertising. Seems plain targetted at the people who don't look at specs, but want to by a brand they recognise...

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Samsung brings back clamshell phones with added Android

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Given that the big problem with phones is the two constraints of "want more screen" and "fit in pocket", I've wondered why we don't see more folding-types (although this particular model is only a small screen one). Why not have one side being a full touchscreen, and the other for physical controls (perhaps a full qwerty keyboard)? Or even a phone with touchscreens on both(similar to the DS, but ideally as seamless as possible, to give effectively a large single screen, in a still compact pocket-sized form)?

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No fondleslabs please, says Microsoft as Office 365 hits Android

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Re: RT 2

Yep, it's the usual metrics where "30 million" is "hardly any" when it's Nokia or MS, but "one million" is a runaway revolutionary success when it's Apple.

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Re: The kind of person who would use Office on a mobile phone

I use OneNote on my Android phone - whilst actually creating and doing most of the work is more easily done on a laptop (and I wouldn't want to do that on a phone *or* tablet), being able to view and make simple edits on my phone is great. This isn't work stuff either, it's things like todo lists or planning for a holiday - if I think of something to add when I'm out, or need to look at something to buy. The small screen is no more of a hassle than using say a web browser or typing emails on a phone.

I can see it being useful for more straightforward documents too (Google Drive works good, but only plain text). Viewing a spreadsheet or making simple additions might be useful too - again, I don't think anyone's expected to do substantial edits on a phone.

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Re: Why

Does the Office 365 website not work on your tablet? Honest question. This new announcement is specifically for the new apps for phones (even for Windows, it's WP not RT).

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Re: Deja vu, all over again!

Not this again. Windows 8 works just fine on my non-touch laptop.

I appreciate they've changed the start menu, and as always there will be people who don't like the new version. But if that's the case, criticise the new version - it's got nothing to do with "only made for touch". Indeed, several things in the start screen now make use of the right mouse button; and accessing the start screen in the first place is done by hovering the mouse over the hotspot - don't see how either of those are done on a touchscreen, which presumably must have different input methods implemented for it (I do wonder if the critics have only used a Windows 8 on a touchscreen, and conclude it's unusable on a laptop because they've only used the touch optimised controls, without realising it works with keyboard and mouse too).

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But is there a non-web version of Office 365 for Windows 8 and RT though? I thought Office 365 was online only - so Android and ios tablets can access it, the same way Windows tablets do?

The article says "Windows Phone, iPhone and Android phones" - Windows Phone, not RT, so it seems this is something only for phones (rightly or wrongly) on all platforms. And as such, this is no different to any other website that offers an "app" for small-screen devices. If you're on a tablet, use a web-browser, just like laptops don't get the "apps" for the website either. We could ask the same of Google, why do they provide for iphone+Android+web-browser for many services?

It's true that the full blown Office isn't available for ios or Android tablets yet, but I thought they're working on them. For years MS have made their software available for OS X. I don't think this is really an Apple-style "let's make things only work with our own hardware".

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'Steve Jobs killed music biz', but Bon Jovi don't mind Google Glass

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Because no one did mp3s before Apple Records did(!)

I'm more concerned now though how places seem to be drying up - a few years ago there were loads of places to buy mp3s, now it seems to be for many bands "let's only offer it on itunes", in some cases trumpeting the exclusivity as if it were a good thing, or making whole albums itunes-only. Lack of choice to buy from is not a good thing, and will do far more harm than downloading or anything else (same with the trend in videos and TV to make things only viewable on an ipad - hopefully Chromecast will put an end to that). I've also seen people say they want to buy other media players, but aren't sure if the Apple non-mp3 format their music is in, because they bought it in, will work on devices other than ipods (I don't know if this is a valid concern or not, but again it's discouraging competition in the market).

Shiny plastic discs? I stream my music from Google Music to the TV speakers - having to plug in a device and play from physical media is so 20th Century.

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Intel's homage to Raspberry Pi: The much pricier Minnowboard

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Re: Crazy price point

It does seem costly. I wonder, where are all the Apple users saying "It doesn't matter that it's expensive, if you complain about that, you must be poor"?

Ah that's right, no one considers that to be a valid argument in the first place.

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Re: This kinda reminds me of what happened with netbooks

The problem with netbooks was precisely the opposite - that we had a great idea in 2007-2008, then it basically never changed, so in 2010 onwards we still had mostly 2008 spec machines selling for the same price. I'd love to have a "bolted on" upgraded netbook with more RAM, new processors and higher resolutions...

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Microsoft Surface sales numbers revealed as SHOCKINGLY HIDEOUS

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Re: Holy Trinity of Fail

100 million is a fail? If you say so.

And if WP is a fail, so was iphone up until the last 2 or 3 years.

How do Surface sales compare to the early Android tablet sales? Even the overhyped ipad got far fewer sales in its first generation.

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Re: Windows 8, Windows Phone 8 and Windows RT?

Actually I believe that Windows 8 x86 and RT are compatible, as when writing the new-style apps, they work on both. So they've done it a different way - rather than making RT the same as Windows Phone, they've got unified development between x86 and RT. Given the common criticism of tablets just being oversized phones, this doesn't seem unreasonable to me.

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How much profit does the Nexus 7 make I wonder...

"Had Microsoft offered it at a subsidized price to get initial momentum, and had they managed not to cripple it quite so badly (include outlook for EMail and allow the Office suite to be used for business) it might have sold respectably."

Note we have no evidence of sales in this article, the flaming from The Reg is about their sales revenue (minus advertising revenue, because it's another anti-MS 101 method of handpicking stats to prove a point).

If they'd reduced the price, even if they had much better sales that for any other company would be regarded a success, the Reg would be bean counting and saying the reduced revenue meant it was a failure. If MS had even subsidised it, the Reg would be saying how much a failure was, because it made them a loss.

Indeed there's a thought - how much profit does Google get from the Nexus 7? Or will they get with Chromecast? See, comparing companies purely on revenue and profit makes no sense, especially for consumers. The fact that the Nexus 7 and Chromecast are low cost is a good thing, and something that is rightfully praised. Only an idiot would write an article ridiculing Google's strategy that meant their revenue was lower and they would make no profit from the device sales.

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I wonder if they will replace the RT with the new Intel "Atom" tablet processors. I mean, just one year ago it seemed that ARM was the only realistic way and going with Atom would risk crippling the device despite the advantage of compatibility. But now we've got an increasing number of Intel Android devices, with Samsung even choosing it for their mainstream 10" tablet, even though from a compatibility point of view, it's slightly worse than ARM for Android.

Atom-based Windows tablets exist, but they're not as well known about as the Surface, and more expensive (perhaps because of the higher Windows licence fee?) Bring out a Surface RT successor based on Intel with a cheap version of Windows (similar to Windows 7 starter), and it'll do a lot better. I'd gladly snap one up to replace my netbook (for which no obvious upgrade currently exists, and I can't be the only one who wants a "real" OS for a computer be in Windows or Linux, with keyboard as standard, even if it's also a tablet).

The Pro is indeed a lot better, though the Intel Core tablets/hybrids were hampered by the poorer battery life. I might get a Windows hybrid, but I'm waiting to see what Haswell based devices appear - MS really need to updade the Pro to Haswell ASAP.

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Re: amounted to "just' $853m

But note it's the marketing department that should be blamed (either for poor adverts, for poor value for money in how they advertised), or perhaps whoever chose to spend that much - and not the tech itself.

As I say in another post, there must be an order of magnitude more marketing for Apple than MS. If they're getting it without spending 10 times amount, then the question is why they're getting it cheaper.

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But this article doesn't say the sales numbers!

"Got that? Microsoft spent more in a single year advertising the Windows 8 and Surface launches than it took in from Surface sales that same year."

But this is comparing the advertising for two things to the sales from one thing.

Who cares about how much money companies make anyway - if a company makes loads of profit, that's not good for me, the consumer. How do they do on sales? (Windows 8 passed 100 million a while back - seems like a success to me.)

MS spend a lot of advertising? Well, I'm more bothered that I have to endure endless mentions of Apple, whether it's the product placement in virtually every TV show, or now in most adverts. Go out to do some shopping, and itunes and app store gift card vouchers face you in every store aisle. It goes on and on - take a count of how many times you see an Apple ad per day, and it vastly outdoes any other company.

"Apple sold 57 million iPads in the same period"

Not that we care about fisher price pads, but that's still way less than even just Windows 8 PCs - so much for the death of the PC.

I love Android, but how well were individual Android tablets selling before the Kindle Fire or Nexus 7? Indeed, how well are many of them selling now?

Let's not forget how "one million in 76 days" was hailed as a runaway success for a certain Apple product, despite Symbian selling vastly more. And that was preceded by 6 months of wall-to-wall hype and advertising.

It also strikes me as entirely normal that new products get lots of advertising, whilst established well selling products get less advertising, so comparing the budgets as if they should always match doesn't make much sense.

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Typical! Google's wonder-dongle is a solution looking for a problem

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Re: Selective pricing quotes?

The point is that they're not comparable.

The Sky thing will be great for many people, but it seems to be locked to Sky content, and you have to pay the Sky subscription fee. If that counts as being like Chromecast, then why not mention a bog standard Sky or Virgin Media TV box? Hey, I can watch iplayer on my TV already, it turns my TV into a smart TV, and it's completely free! (Not including the monthly fee I pay to Virgin Media.) Can the Sky dongle give you a standard web-browser, do playing of local content, or mirror another laptop's display, or stream from any web address sent by another device?

Chromecast works with anything. For Youtube alone, the price would be worth it for many, but last time I looked, there were plenty of Internet TV services you can subscribe to. Yes, that costs too, but you've got the freedom to go to who you want, rather than being locked into Sky or Virgin Media.

I don't want exclusive content - I don't want content to be exclusive.

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Re: +1

I don't have a games console. I don't have a smart TV in the bedroom. I do have a smart TV in the living room, though it'd still be much easier to transfer a Youtube video from my laptop to the screen, rather than have to renavigate to it through the TV (similarly for things like Google Music - it does work through the TV's browser, but it's much quicker to access it through a laptop or indeed my phone). The smart TV will remain great for playing local videos via DLNA, but it doesn't do everything that it seems Chromecast will.

So that's a mere 2 potential devices that I'll be buying then, despite having a smart TV already. I also have a PC plugged into the TV - yes, I can VNC into it and control it from the laptop, but clicking a button would still be much easier, not to mention that for most people this is not something they've got set up at all.

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Google menaces Apple's 3-year-old toddler with its cheap stream tech

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Re: WTF? Even as a MacBook Air user I presume the article was tongue in cheek.

"It was a diverse mix back then — no single system ticked every box."

Yes that's exactly my point - sorry, I'm not clear what point you're trying to make by putting my argument back at me. The article makes the claim of Apple being "the R&D lab for the entire industry", with the implication of there being no competition other than MS. I point out another example of a system that was doing things better, nowhere do I claim that the Amiga instead led the entire industry. If you point out yet another example that did things better, that's in agreement with point point.

If you're saying I'm moaning too for disagreeing with the article, then so are you for bringing up RiscOS...

(As an aside though, the Amiga had excellent inter-application communication since OS 2.0, with the standardised AREXX scripting for example. Of course it had built in buttons, menus and other widgets. It didn't have any memory protection until recently, same as classic MacOS and DOS.)

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Re: what a load of old bollocks

The original claim that was disputed was about Apple leading the way in technology and everyone else following.

You're back-pedalling to "Well it had some good things, and some bad things too. That's to be expected for a product that's released after other products that have been around for a while." Not exactly leading the way is it - if they were leading, they'd have released it years earlier, before, not after other companies, and had plenty of time to add those features.

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Re: Google Chromecast is the final nail in Microsoft's mobile coffin.

Not entirely sure what Chromecast will do to affect either Windows PCs or mobile devices. If anything, Chromecast keeps laptops in the living room, as they can be used to send content to the TV, rather than having it purely done through smart TVs or set-top boxes.

"Apple will survive because they have already achieved significant mobile market share."

Again, not sure what the mobile phone market has anything to do with Chromecast, but both WP and Iphone are niches compared to the dominant Android.

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Re: Meh

Presumably your phone can connect to your broadband via Wifi.[*]

If you're saying you're happy viewing on a computer, then you're missing the point, which is to enable displaying content of the big living room TV. Most people like watching TV on their big TV, not on small computer screens. Yes, you can plug in a computer, but that's hassle - much easier to just click a button and do it wirelessly. Also means you can continue to remotely control it (or have to have cables trailing across the living room). As for TVs with internet connections, this is primarily intended for the millions of TVs without one, where replacing a big screen TV (or the numerous ones within a house) is expensive.

[*] But then if you see no advantage in doing things without wires, perhaps you've yet to have a wifi network in your home...

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Re: what a load of old bollocks

Other things the original iphone couldn't do: 3G, apps, copy/paste. All things even older feature phones could do. The funny thing is, people like you at the time were arguing similarly that "But no one wants to do that" - looking back, it seems absurd now.

On PAYG phones back then, sending an MMS could often be cheaper, and also meant the recipient didn't have to pay. On contract, both would be included in the contract.

I'd still use MMS now. It saves you having to worry about if the person is checking email on their phone, something less common then, and even now, I wouldn't assume people check their email as often as text, even if I know they have a smartphone.

(And as for the other comment from someone, that Android was late with some features isn't relevant, as no one would argue that Android was one of the first, or leading smartphones for that time period. When the first Android phones came out, people said it was a good new open platform to move to, but no one claimed it was revolutionary, or any of the absurd hype we got with a 2007 dumb phone that ended up being massively outsold by even just one model of Nokia smartphone.)

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Re: Research...

It doesn't even do applications? Yet another way their offering doesn't even compete with the various smart TV functionality already out there as standard.

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Re: WTF? Even as a MacBook Air user I presume the article was tongue in cheek.

I agree. Whilst MS may have often been behind in functionality, the problem is that back then, the "entire industry" had more platforms than MS and Apple. It's misleading to pretend that the platforms in the 80s and 90s were only the ones also around today.

As someone on the Amiga in the early 90s, I was amused to see Apple users moaning they'd had Windows 95 a few years earlier, when the Amiga had a 32-bit OS with GUI 10 years earlier, and it pre-emptively multitasked, which classic MacOS never achieved (that platform had nothing to do with their current PCs that carry the "Mac" brandname).

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Re: Research...

But they're not at the same point, it's cheaper and more cross-platform than even the latest Apple TV. If you're going to criticise Google for not getting it to us sooner, you might as well criticise Apple for not being better in that 7 years, or indeed anyone else (there are loads of people making TV streaming boxes, not just Apple, and most of them work with other manufacturer's products - not sure why Apple is getting all the mention, when their box was as much a fail as any other TV set-top box).

And to borrow an expression, "It doesn't matter if they weren't first, Google'll be the first to popularise it".

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Google Chromecast: Here's why it's the most important smart TV tech ever

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Re: Stupid TV add-on

Why do I need updates? It does what I want, and will still work. It's like moaning that a car doesn't get updates.

It's not made dead by a Chromecast, indeed, I might buy a Chromecast and plug it in for the extra functionality. It's not like the "smart" functionality costs more - it's standard in all but low end TVs these days.

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"they need the same cut-through the crap vision that Apple achieved with the iPhone."

What's that, release the same thing but way more expensive and missing loads of basic features? I don't think the Chromecast looks like that.

"This seems to achieve that. It could turn a small tablet or a big phone into the TV remote."

And indeed, smart TVs can already use phones and tablets as remotes.

The advantage of the Chromecast is offering more functionality (unlike an Apple feature phone) to transfer control from a laptop/etc (e.g., mirroring display, transferring streaming URL), and also (unlike an Apple phone) being far cheaper.

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Re: It's just a really bad equivalent of AirPlay / DLNA; what's the big deal?

Do you have a link for a $60 Android stick? All the ones I've seen have no indication of what software or features they have - sorry, I don't want to have to faff around seeing if I can find applications on Google Play that might do the "smart TV" features I want.

And that's still almost twice the price of the Chromestick.

As for comparing to Appleflop TV, I thought Chromestick was supposed to be able to mirror any content too. Chromestick seems to be a lot more open and cross-platform too.

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Re: Damn

Although note that a lot of smart TVs don't do so well at mirroring displays or transferring streaming (e.g., you're browsing Youtube on your laptop, and want it to play on the TV, or maybe you want to play Google Music through the TV speakers). You can use the TV's own browser of course, but it's slower if it's already on your laptop. Getting DLNA to work with music can be tricky too (since most players don't support it, and often there are problems such as not getting the track order correct).

At this low a price, I can see it complementing smart TVs, and it's a great way to add the functionality to older TVs that don't have these features at all.

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Chromecast: You'll pop me in for HOT STREAMS of JOY, hopes Google

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The key is the price - I have an LG smart TV which is great at playing videos across the network, but I'd still be tempted to get this as well for it, simply for the benefits that Chromecast offers: sending music/video or web streaming info from phone/laptop to the TV - currently viewing a Youtube video means having to reload it through the TV's application or browser, and some things don't work well - e.g., Google Music quality through the TV's browser is poor, it'd be great to just send it via a phone or laptop.

It also becomes a much cheaper way of upgrading existing TVs. It's at that price point of "I'm not sure if I'll use it much or not, but I spend more on a takeaway".

And it seems to be much more open - play from any service you can get on a computer, rather than having to worry about whether TV streaming service X supports manufacturer Y (I'm sure some will still lock it down so you can only play on an ipad, but that's the fault of the TV companies).

Ideally though smart TVs will add Chromecast functionality as standard - yes, the dongle will then be a bit pointless, but the technology won't be.

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Looks good and cheap - how open is it?

The problem with Google TV wasn't that people aren't buying it, but that TV manufacturers aren't switching to it as fast as they'd hoped. I know that LG switched to it for the US market - is there any evidence that the TVs sold less than their previous smart TVs? I find that hard to believe.

Indeed, I find it odd that this article spins that streaming boxes (of which there are far more to choose from than Apple and Roku) are a success whilst smart TVs aren't. Whilst Google TV has yet to be mainstream, "smart" functionality has become standard in new TVs. (I love that 13 million over several years is a "success" for Apple, yet the same thing would be regarded a failure for any other company - sorry, Apple TV is not a success, there are plenty more ways people are getting their TV.)

But Chromecast is still welcomed - it's a very cheap way to add the functionality to existing TVs. It's also a worthy improvement over DLNA/Universal Plug and Play. Apple's solution isn't an answer, as it's geared towards locking you into Apple devices. DLNA is great at playing videos from a random device like a PC or NAS - anything on the network - but it can't be used for mirroring a display, and is hard to get working for streaming. The problem with the alternatives that do mirroring of displays is that they're then no good if you just want to play a video (what if I want to use my phone/laptop whilst playing a video from it to the TV?) So I was pleased to see Google mention that you can switch to doing something else, whilst using Chromecast to play a video.

How open is it? Does the SDK use standard protocols (e.g., commands over HTTP), or is it an Open Source library, or some closed source black box? Could it be ported to Linux (or Windows Phone, or a Raspberry Pi), which isn't yet supported?

Could manufacturers build Chromecast functionality into their smart TVs or set-top boxes? This would seem the obvious thing to do long term. Whilst Google seem to be making a far better attempt than Apple to give us something cross-platform, it would be nice to be properly open, for it to be a successor to DLNA.

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Apple KILLER decloaked? Google lovingly unboxes Nexus 7 Android 4.3 slablette

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Re: It only just clicked

Hear hear. Also there's the point that tablets are becoming much cheaper (indeed, even the £500 tablets, whilst they seem overpriced for what they do, are cheaper than what many laptops sell at). So it means people can upgrade them more often, or are more likely to have one per person whilst they might still share a PC. Long term I think tablets will sell more than PCs, but it's not because they're intrinsically better, or people want touch-only devices or anything else, it's simply they're way cheaper. It doesn't mean that PCs are going to disappear.

I don't have a huge problem with Google showing that slide, it is a launch after all and they want to make their announcement sound as impressive as possible. But the media will run with stats like these, and continue to claim how "PCs are dying" (oddly in articles no doubt typed at a keyboard).

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Re: Note to laptop manufacturers...

I'm not sure why 1080 is piss poor, and 1200 is good - it's not that big a difference I agree that the obsession with 1366x768 is annoying, but Apple and Google are no exception, as you've got to pay for those high resolution devices. Samsung also do ones with similarly high resolutions.

I wonder if the issue is cost - I mean, a Nexus 7 is cheap, but it only has a 7" screen. Consider how even 10" tablets are significantly more expensive.

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Re: Nice but...

If I'm at home, I'd rather watch videos on the big TV (or at least a laptop) than a tiny screen that I have to hold. Tablets make great portable media players (after all, that was what they were called in 2009 and earlier, before the media had to come up with a new name to pretend Apple had invented something new), but if you've only got a Wifi device, or your mobile connection isn't unlimited (or you're watching on the tube etc).

32GB is a lot of apps. How many blu-ray quality films is it, to make use of that Full HD screen?

The only feasible solution is USB OTG, which works, though I'd rather more memory or a microSD.

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Does every headline have to have the obligatry Applevert? As if Apple product placement every 5 minutes on the TV isn't enough. Perhaps the Mac reviews should be headed "to take on Windows".

The 2013 Nexus 7 looks great - even last year's still seems one of the best 7-8" tablets (alongside the Note 8). The last paragraph makes no sense - sorry, even if an ipad mini was the same price as a Nexus 7, and ran Android, it wouldn't be in the running.

I may get one, but that doesn't mean I'm going to stop using my laptop. (I'm sure that phone sales have long overtaken PCs, but that doesn't mean PCs are going to die.)

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Apple drops hints about future low-cost iPhones

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Re: Hypothesis

Also I wonder how they distinguish between "tablets" and "phones", since these are the same kind of thing, and it's only Apple that uses two brand names. In the Android world, there are loads of devices, with a continuum of sizes from small to large. Android itself has a concept of 4 screen size categories (which scales better, imo, given the popularity of 5-7" devices), and I don't know if any of that info is available to a website.

More generally - so ipad users, just like iphone users, are more likely to reload Facebook all day, but so what. My phone is still useful to me, even when I'm not using the web. Maps, email, video, music, software are all things Android phones and tablets do.

Is Cook really saying he doesn't know what else a tablet could be used for other than web browsing? (I also dislike his implication that the popularity of Android tablets isn't true - "if" - apparently facts about sales are a lie, but he's happy to accept web stats which are well known for being unreliable?)

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Re: cheap iPhone

"SImply flog shed loads of the 4 or 4s at a knock down price. They can afford to do that now"

They already do do that, and have for years, ever since the second model came out. You didn't think all those sales were from their latest device did you - their sales are already made up of a range of devices, high and low cost, just like Samsung etc.

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The good thing about IOS is there's only one device, one screen size, one resolution to code for, which means everything works properly and is fully optimised for that one device. That's right - there's only one 3.5" iphone. And one 10" ipad. Oh damn. Well, the good thing is there're only two devices: one 3.5" iphone, one ipad and a 4" iphone 5. Well okay, three, but there's only them, as well as one 8" ipad mini, one set of 3 iphones using the earlier ultra-low resolution, one 10" ipad with another resolution, and soon we'll have just one lower spec iphone along with just one more ipad mini with a higher resolution, and there are also rumours that the next iphone will be one 4.8" device, as well as there being rumours of one 12" or 13" ipad (or possibly just one of each, who knows), and an almost fanatical devotion to the pope.

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Verizon offers Motorola mobe with 48-HOUR battery life

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Re: New definition of "Mini"?

Well these things are relative - there's another device on the market at 8" that's labelled "mini".

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WAR ON PORN: UK flicks switch on 'I am a pervert' web filters

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Re: In other words

And let's be clear - simulated so-called "rape porn" is "images made with consenting adults". Legal to do, legal to make, legal to publish (despite claims to the contrary - see R v. Peacock), but will soon be illegal to privately possess an image of. A point often forgotten is that there are many people who have rape fantasies (men and women), from the point of the "victim".

This also risks criminalising significant amounts of BDSM - aside from rape role-play, I can see that plenty of images/videos of sex with restraints would be seen as depicting a non-consensual to the police or CPS. Even those who don't care about porn would be at risk if they visit BDSM social networking sites (that often have user images/videos), or privately photograph their own bedroom fun.

The "extreme porn" law brought in by Labour has already been used in ridiculous cases as a joke CGI talking tiger video, and against Simon Walsh for possessing a video of private consensual acts between gay men. Thankfully both found not guilty - but hundreds of people a year are convicted, with people pleading guilty, unaware that they might have a defence. This law puts people's private sexual fantasies on public display, and risks innocent people being made to associate with real sex abusers as part of sex offender programmes or in prison.

The idea that images of consenting adults should be illegal to possess - treated on par with images of child abuse - just because some people don't like them, is ridiculous. It does not follow that an act being illegal or distasteful means it should be illegal to depict - depictions of rape are sold as entertainment in mainstream film and TV.

What will be next to be banned, since this seems to be a slippery slope, I wonder?

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Apple earnings slip, but numbers beat Wall Street estimates

Mark .
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Re: So it's official

Indeed - sadly you've just got to look at the mainstream media (who are fanbois) to see the response - it's being spun as "Apple beat expectations", with little mention of the massive slide in iphone and ipad sales this year. This is particularly embarrassing in a growing market - Symbian got slated by the media for years after 2007 because its market share wad falling, despite it still growing in absolute numbers!

Similar double standard for earnings - in quarters were Nokia's finances have done worse, but weren't as bad as estimates, the media then spin that as how bad it is, and how Nokia are doomed...

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Moto X specs leaked ahead of expected August 1 launch

Mark .
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My 20" flat screen TV has a much higher PPI than your 50"!

"a distinctly unretinal resolution of 720-by-1184 pixels"

Yet it's still slightly higher than the "retina" latest iphone which is at 640×1136.

I know, Apple go by "density", but that's a poor measure, as it rewards phones for having smaller displays. If I have a 4.7" Moto X, and you make it smaller, and reduce the resolution slightly, you've done two things to make it worse for me - I fail to see how one can spin that to say it's made it better. I have a 4.65" Galaxy Nexus, and I'd rather that size and resolution over 4" 640x1136 any day - I don't care how well it compares on some contrived statistic.

Imagine doing the same thing for TVs? Should I replace my big flat screen TV with a much smaller one, because "ooh, it'll look 'sharper', because of the higher density". No one buys smaller TVs because they think it'll be a better display. Should visits to the cinema treat us with, rather than huge screens, instead tiny postage stamp screens, for us to enjoy the incredible pixel density? The same argument would suggest we should sit miles away from our TVs, so the perceived visual density is higher. Making a device larger with the same resolution might make it look less smooth, but that's just showing up the low resolution it had in the first place - a smaller device doesn't magically have more information or more quality, it's just that you aren't able to see the poorer quality resolution in the first place.

The Moto X is low compared to the now standard Full HD among high end smartphones, but I guess not everyone needs or cares about that, it still seems a reasonable phone for many.

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Top Mozillans dream of quarterly Firefox OS updates ... and users, too

Mark .
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Why buy an iphone instead of Android? What does iphone do that no other phone does? Why did people buy Android or iphone when they were in their immature stage?

New platforms don't appear overnight - they start small, and grow gradually over time (only Android really had massive growth, and even there, it was a lot smaller in its immature stage).

And most people don't even care or know about an "operating system". They buy phones. The real struggle therefore will be getting hardware manufacturers to support it.

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That Retina display iPad mini delay scuttlebutt? Fuggedaboutit

Mark .
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This is what happens when the media rely on vapourware and rumour rather than focusing on actual news. Anyhow, for those of us who don't speak Apple, what resolution is "Retina"? Either in pixels, or standard sizes (e.g., Full HD, WXGA, etc)? When someone brags to me that their Apple phone has a "Retina" display, as far as I can tell, it turns out they mean it has a lower resolution than my 18 month old Nexus.

Even if it is October, it'll be behind other high resolution tablets likely to come out sooner (next Nexus 7, Kindle Fire etc), so nothing unusual or first here. But as I say, let's wait until the products are released to see which device is next to up the resolution.

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PEAK APPLE: 'iPhone sales STALL' at first sniff of fresh droid competition

Mark .
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Re: 150million over 134million is a huge increase... what stall ?

And I'm pretty sure that most people don't care about their profit as much as Apple do.

That's the point. Why should we care about that? People care about other things - the products, the popularity. Never in the most heated Linux vs Windows argument did someone go "But look how much money Bill makes!"

It seems entirely reasonable that analysts, journalists and commentards write about what people in general care about, not what Apple care about.

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Mark .
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Re: 150million over 134million is a huge increase... what stall ?

The whole flop versus "runaway success" is annoying anyway. Apple get praised for coming 3rd with 10% of the market after 6 years, and selling 1 million in 76 days. Other companies are regarded as a "flop" or "failure" because they didn't become number one in 6 months, or sold 100 million in 6 months.

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Mark .
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Re: 150million over 134million is a huge increase... what stall ?

True, though they are simply being bitten by the thing that promoted them for years - the ill-defined category of "smartphone" has also meant that for years, 100% of Apple sales have been compared to a fraction of Samsung and Nokia's.

Also note that Apple sales do include lower end phones - as when a new model comes out, the older generations are still on sale for years.

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