* Posts by Mark .

1859 posts • joined 18 Jun 2009

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 ?

For years after 2007, Nokia Symbian was number one, the sales were increasing, and in fact increasing faster than Apple's (even though that's comparing just some of Nokia's phones too all of Apple's phones). Even just one single model of large number of Nokia smartphones is still the best selling model of smartphone - the 2009 released 5230. But what did we hear from the media? Years of "Nokia are doomed, they are plummetting, Apple are leading" all based on the fact that Nokia's *market share* was falling, and Apple's was increasing.

So you know what? It's payback time. Now that Apple's share falls whilst other platforms increase, this is what's going to happen.

(And 150 million phones a year? Sorry, still less than Nokia and Samsung.)

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Whilst I'm sure that we'll see phones heading towards slower growth as the market matures, I fail to see how "Samsung's sales aren't great either" - I mean, they're only the number one phone and smartphone company...

And note the article talks in terms of market share too, not just absolute numbers.

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Smartwatch makers: You need apps to beat Apple

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You need apps to beat a company that has no product in the market? I don't think so. Application support is useful, certainly - you don't want to be the company that releases a "smartphone" that can't even run applications...

What I would like though is being open enough that it works with any platform - none of this "Let's cater to the minority of Apple users, and if you're lucky, Android". Even if I find one with Android support, and I'm happy using Android now, who knows how things may change in a few years. If I'm spending £100 on a watch, I don't want to have to upgrade my watch every time I change my phone. Even if an OS isn't supported officially, it'd be good to be open enough for others to add this support - is that theoretically possible on the Pebble, for example?

Sadly I predict the mainstream companies will do the complete opposite - Apple especially - seeing them as a way to lock customers into their products. Every time you see a marketing type harp on about "ecosystem", replace that word with "locked-in walled garden".

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Google teases hush-hush Android event on July 24

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Re: Assembled in USA

I wonder if it's a response to Apple now marketing "Designed in California" - I hate that this sort of advertising is done, but if one company starts it, it's hard for the rest not to join in (especially as Android, and Windows too come to that of course, are also designed in the USA).

Hopefully Google'll have the sense to keep the advertising to the USA. Who knows what idiot thought it a good idea to put the "Designed in California" adverts to a British audience. To a US audience, the advert is advocating protectionism. To a British audience, it's telling me I should prefer a device designed by Americans over one designed by Koreans...

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Apple MacBook Air 11-inch 2013: Netbook with next-gen tech

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Re: Leading the pack

I love it that when people point out cheaper devices, Apple fans will say "But I don't care if it's expensive, I can afford it, not my fault you're poor". But when it's a device that's better but more expensive, suddenly you say it's unfair to compare to something that costs more, and that we should take the price into account when comparing!

The point is that there is no one objectively best device, but there are lots of devices, with advantages and disadvantages, and different people have different needs. Personally I look at a range of devices, and pick the best one for me, rather than locking myself into one manufacturer.

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Re: 3rd review of an Air???

Review, not reviews? I think that's the point being made here...

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Re: NOT

I agree entrely - "netbooks" were notable by their 10" size of less, and their low cost, which this does neither.

There's nothing wrong with 11" high end ultra-portables, but these have been around for years, long before we had netbooks or Apple Airs come to that. And there are still plenty to choose from today - and all of them get the same benefits that Haswell gives the Airs.

(Though perhaps the headline meant it as an insult - if I'm buying the latest product, it should be the latest technology as standard, and if I'm paying that much, I ought to get more than a netbook!)

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Worldwide smartwatch shipments predicted to top 5 million next year

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Re: May I dare to disagree

I agree. I can certainly see it being useful for notifications (which I believe things like the Pebble will do) - I still wear a watch because I like knowing the time at a glance, without having to get my phone out (especially if I'm somewhere in a hurry). When I'm out, it's easy to miss a phone or text, so it'd be useful to see that at a glance too. Other potential uses include sat-nav instructions, which can be harder to hear when outside (yes, I use it when walking - way better and faster than having to look at a map), or being able to pause or skip music tracks without having to dig my phone out.

But it needs to have good battery life, and needs to be as readable in sunlight as a watch (I see the Pebble uses e-ink displays which helps with both of these). And I have no interest in using it to browse the Internet or anything else like that on a tiny screen, when I'd rather use my phone. I also wouldn't want one that's just a device in its own right, rather than being basically a remote control for a phone.

Also I'm not sure if I'm interested enough to pay upwards of £100 for one. Of course some people do pay that much for a watch, but that's the market who pay for classic watches and won't even go near a digital watch.

I'd also like it to look fairly normal and not "I've got an expensive smartwatch-thing". I think the biggest hurdle Apple will have in making one is working out how to fit a big logo on the device like they do with every other product they make...

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"Smart watches will be the most important new product category in consumer electronics since the iPad defined the market for tablets"

Stopped reading there.

The only thing that changed was the vast amounts of media coverage given *before it was announced, let alone released*.

Other than that, what we've seen is a natural evolution of smartphones and media players that we had for years (Android tablets were released shortly before ipads, but were often called "media players" instead). The idea of "one 3.5" device and one 10" device" now looks laughable, in a world dominated by 5" to 7" Android devices.

Similarly, I can see the smartwatches like the Pebble or those from Sony being ignored, until Apple release something similar later, and the media hail it as a revolution.

The thing that made today's tablets possible was advances in technology - CPUs from ARM/Samsung, screens from LG/Samsung, advances in memory storage. Similarly that will be what makes smartwatches possible and popular - not because one company decided to make them.

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Pure boffinry: We peek inside Nokia's miracle cameraphone

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Re: Here's another idea.

Also look at how much more of a success Symbian smartphones were than the Nokia N tablets (Symbian putting iphone sales to shame, and only the media and people who's only seen WAP phones thought the latter was innovative). Though having said that, the N900 was a Maemo phone, and didn't come anywhere near Symbian's success - but maybe it would have done better if it wasn't effectively a one-off product.

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Re: here is an idea

But they just did - I mean, as long as the device still functions without a SIM in it (I know my old Nokia 5800 does, and this is commonly done with tablets), you can go ahead and do that? Possibly a version without the phone/modem bits may be cheaper or lighter, but that's about it.

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Re: Impressive

It already did, it's called an 808...

(As an aside, it's interesting to note that whilst users of other platforms often say they wish Nokia hardware was available with their preferred OS, you never hear that of Apple's. Kind of says something about what those people think of their hardware.)

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Chromebooks now the fastest-growing segment of PC market

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Re: Google

Even dummy users often want to do more than run a web browser though.

It's a shame - I think Google could do a lot more if they were promoting the idea of writing web apps, but this doesn't seem to be happening. There's even a Chrome plugin/API that allows writing native code in a cross-platform manner, so there's loads of potential, but it doesn't seem to be used. I thought this was the idea of the Chrome Store. But I tried it out - I installed ChromeOS on a VM, and decided to give it a go.

You known what? Not a single application I tried ran on ChromeOS, because they all required a native plug-ins - that only ran on Windows (or perhaps, Windows, OS X and maybe Linux).

That's terrible. It emphasises the point that even for web stuff, you're better off with one of the other OSs. And the fact that the Chrome Store is littered with this stuff, making them unusable Chromebooks, seems a disaster.

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Re: UseFUL cheap NOT junk

I agree about the usefulness of netbooks, but in what way do you think MS killed netbooks?

I mean sure, they have effectively killed the very cheapest end of laptops now by eliminating a starter edition of Windows 8. But there's nothing stopping manufacturers releasing Linux netbooks. Also there's nothing stopping manufacturers releasing netbooks that are still a bit more expensive, but still useful - I love my 10" netbook, and find it annoying that the choice now is 11" minimum, but I'm not sure how MS are to blame, not the manufacturers? Another problem is that whilst the low-cost good-battery-life Atom still exists, it doesn't seem to be available for pure laptops, and the hybrids are more expensive - again, that seems a hardware issue.

I think it's more the way that ridiculous amounts of media hype for tablets and against netbooks, and the manufacturers thinking they can chase higher profits with tablets (though we're already seeing the race to the bottom with tablet prices). MS adapted to that, they didn't cause it.

Netbooks also weren't helped by the fact that we had to stick with the same 1024x600 resolution and 1GB RAM spec for years. Sales stagnated because once everyone who wanted one had one, there was no reason to upgrade. The former spec is frustrating since we know the same manufacturers can put higher resolutions into tablets and phones without the price rocketing up. The latter is frustrating since all netbooks could take 2GB, and it's long been cheap to buy the extra memory. Both of these make a "full" PC OS like Windows or Linux far more usable. Possibly this was due to the way manufacturers like to play it safe and reduce prices (similar to the way that 1024x600 1GB RAM is now emerging as a standard among lost cost budget Android tablets), but again, that's not MS. Indeed, Windows 8 helped here by mandating a minimum resolution of 1366x768, to stop hardware manufacturers trying to cripple to hardware.

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Re: Better than windows 8 for a laptop?

Actually I remember seeing those kinds of stats for Apple PCs years ago, so it's nothing new. It's just the same kind of misleading stat that we see for Chromebooks - it tells us little about the overall sales. Apple only do well there, because they're expensive.

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Re: Better than windows 8 for a laptop?

"Windows 8 has developed a GUI that is horrid, and the worst on a laptop with only a touchpad and keyboard are part of why this is happening."

Have you used it? Works just fine for me.

Some people don't like the new start screen, but that's nothing to do with the "being only for touch" claim. I didn't like the Windows XP start menu, I guess that was only usable on a tablet too.

"Apple OS/X based laptops - too expensive a price of entry for many people."

And also, they don't have a hierarchical menu for launching programs AFAIK, and launch apps by clicking on a row of icons too. So if you don't like it in Windows 8, you won't like it in OS X either.

"Most linux desktops are easier to work with than the schizo Windows 8 interface and can easily be used with just a touchpad and keyboard."

I assume you aren't using Ubuntu then, which launches applications similar to Windows 8.

"Operating system was designed with the netbook form factor in mind."

Are there any Chromebooks that are 10" or less (which is what I'd say is the "netbook form factor")? They all seem physically like standard laptops, 11" to 14".

"The fact that a new (to the average consumer) operating system is gaining traction in the notebook market is a huge indicator of the failure of Microsoft to meet the needs of the average laptop owner with Windows 8."

100 million is a failure? If you say so. How many Chromebooks have sold?

Don't get me wrong, I think a Chromebook is great for many people, and I think more choice is a good thing. But it's painful to see this kind of argument made.

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Re: Statistics, and damned statistics!

Is that all? I wasn't aware it was possible to buy laptops less than $300 - maybe things are cheaper in the US market, but here with the demise of Linux or Windows Starter based netbooks, the bottom end seems to be at least £250. What makes up the remaining 75%?

It's still more lies and statistics - "25%" tells us nothing, what are the actual numbers? How does that number compare to say, Windows 8 PCs, which all and sundry have claimed are a failure, and that "PCs are dying"?

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XKCD on "fastest growing"

Exactly - http://xkcd.com/1102/

(It's sad people mod you down just because they don't like the facts. I wish there was more choice in the market, especially for low cost laptops rather than oversized-phones, but that doesn't change the facts.)

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Nokia tears wrapper off Lumia 1020 monster imaging mobe

Mark .
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Which Lumia? No Lumia until now has anywhere near the camera of the 808 (including the Lumia 920/925's version of Pureview). I've even seen owners of the older Nokia N8 saying that they've yet to upgrade, because nothing on any platform yet matches its quality (apart from the 808).

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Re: No memory card, fixed battery

True, but it seems the problem there isn't the photos, but the music and videos and apps, and hence this is an argument that goes against other SD-less phones too - the Nexuses (which have 16GB max) and all the iphones.

I think phones should have SD cards, but I don't think having a great camera makes it more of a problem.

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Google loses Latitude in Maps app shake-up

Mark .
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Re: Google Maps no longer usable

On that note, people round here like to joke about Bing, but I was interested to read that Bing maps now use Nokia's maps, which are decent. MS's mistake is to brand it Bing, rather than using Nokia's branding...

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First Google Play reviews, now...

They already made Google Play reviews require Google+, and it confirms my worry of trying to force more services into Google+. Even aside from the debate as to whether a real name should be required for reviews or latitude, there are two major problems:

- Your account is associated with your real name. Which means your phone is too, whether you like it or not. It doesn't help that their enforcement of this policy has been appalling, locking people from their accounts until people hand over legal proof of their foreign-sounding names.

- Goodbye to multiple accounts. So if I have one Google account for my phone, but use another Google account for another service, and both start requiring the use of Google+, which says you're only allowed one account - it's unclear how one is meant to handle that?

As a developer, I want people to be able to review my apps, without needing Google+. It does nothing to reduce the dumb reviews (which are usually sincere, so people don't mind putting their name to them). But it has reduced the quantity of reviews, which means you get less of a fair picture (when you only have a few reviews, there's much more "noise", and it only takes 1 1-star review to pull the average down significantly).

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Mark .
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Re: You know... I did drop a decent stack of cash on my Google Nexus.

Are you suggesting that the "Google" people buy their Nexus from isn't the same Google that makes the mapping application that comes with a Nexus?

I don't see why being an application or OS matters - Nokia maps on my Nokia phone is an application too. In both cases they're applications, in both cases they came with the phone.

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Mark .
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Re: You are the Product.... Just accept it

I think people are looking at the whole picture - the OS, or their phone, as a whole. If Google announced they were going to drop Android, it'd be annoying, and odd, but still their choice. If Android starts to drop useful features that a 7 year old Nokia could do, it's fair to criticise that.

And Google+ may be free, but do you think Google don't gain from having users join it? Why are they trying to encourage people to do so, if that's the case? It's fair game to publicise problems with it.

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Samsung takes mobile net traffic crown from Apple

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"But neither of Redmond’s unloved operating systems is generating as much traffic as MacOS, which generated 7.43% of the world’s internet traffic over the last year."

So Windows 8 has managed to build an installed userbase close to all Macs, in just 8 months, and yet this is spun as "bad news"?

Or alternatively, when you count every version of Windows separately, but count all the different versions of MacOS as one version, MacOS does better, only in some cases? Well, I'm shocked. I guess there are plenty of Android phones that don't sell as well as "the iphone", if I count every iphone as one device. And I guess Apple have the best selling computer if I compare every individual PC to the collective sales of "the Mac"...

Perhaps one could have higher expectations for the OS that as a whole has 91% share, but this isn't what people said - "it'll be a fail, everyone will use Macs or Ipads" is what we heard. Interesting to see the goalposts moving - no longer "it'll be a fail" but "it hasn't outsold every Mac in existence, yet".

Chrome is doing great as a browser, but it was Chromebooks that have yet to make any entry on the pie chart... (which I think is a shame personally, before Chromebook lovers mod me down - but it seems bad news more for Google than Windows 8, as far as new platforms go).

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Sleek Nokia Lumia details EXPOSED ahead of Thursday's disrobing

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Re: I'm still unclear who the target audience is

"So it's not really conveniently shaped as a phone"

What's the correct phone shape? A 5.5" Galaxy Note?

"and its photos aren't as good as a real camera? "

Says who?

"yes, most people could tell the difference in a blind test but, no, nobody is sufficiently bothered about it to put up with the inconvenience."

First you're saying it's not as good, now you're saying it is better but no one cares - which is it?

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Re: Get a grip on your massive storage requirements

Fair point - though I wonder how many people with phones with SD cards have them actually set up to save to the SD card rather than internal storage... (I have a Nexus, so this is a genuine question - what is the default save location for the camera on Android these days?)

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Re: No expandable storage?

I strongly believe phones (and media players/tablets/etc come to that) should have microSD. But I don't think photos are the issue - it's more things like storing your music and video collection.

My dedicated camera still only has a 2GB card in it from years ago, and holds god knows how many photos. We've come a long way from Apple Quicktake and "holds 8 poor resolution photos at a time" (remember that flop? But I thought everything they released was a success!)

And at least this does have 32GB - the problem is when microSD devices only give us 16GB (or less). Though a 64GB option would be nice.

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Samsung Galaxy S3 explodes, turns young woman into 'burnt pig'

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Re: Oh dear

Why speculate? Why not go and read the story where it happened with an Apple device, as linked from the article.

Guess what? Not a single person criticises the device as being sub-standard or whatever. OTOH, *this* story has at least one person claiming that Apple devices would be immune.

(There were criticisms, and rightly so, at the alleged attempts to cover it up.)

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Seven snazzy smartphones for seven sorts of shoppers

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Re: One-handed operation is key to Many buyers' needs

They've already done that - it amuses me that the photo advertising for the ipad "mini" implies how it too is perfect for one handed use...

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Multitouch, not screen size, is main stumbling block

I can still use my Galaxy Nexus one-handed, and actually the problem is with pressing something *close* to the same side as my thumb, so smaller phones aren't easier (and reaching the top of the screen is something that's hard on smaller phones anyway).

Actually though, the big stumbling block to one-handed usage is not the screen size, but needing to use multitouch. I find it amusing that fans praised the original iphone by touting multitouch as being the single best thing ever, yet now the iphone 5 is praised for still being able to use one-handed. Well no, not if you want multitouch you can't.

Ideally, a good UI should still be usable with single-touch too (which was a nice thing about my single-touch Nokia - it worked one-handed, because the UI had to support single-touch). I wish Google would roll out the "single-touch zoom" gesture that's now in Google Maps, to be a standard gesture throughout Android, as that would mean you'd hardly ever need to use multitouch.

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Apple creeps up on Android in US smartphone sales

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Re: Windows Fail

It's not really their backyard though - most of WP sales are from Nokia, and people see phones in terms of the manufacturer rather than the OS. Nokia aren't American, and have always had very little presence in the US (Symbian was the number one dominant OS until 2011, but was never used much in the US).

Also, I assume that this is a different definition to "fail" than the one used for Apple (where one million sales in 76 days is hailed as a runaway success instead of a fail).

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Re: So who was it

"nor for the large hardware ecosystem that exists due to their defined software & hardware interfaces."

What's a hardware ecosystem - trees?

I prefer a product that just works with any device because it uses open standards, and not because it's locked into part of some "ecosystem".

(The rest of your points are common to all platforms, there are plenty to choose from. And the OP is right - for whatever reason, the US phone market is and has always been different to the rest of the world.)

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PEAK SAMSUNG? Shares slide ahead of BEELLLIONS in profit

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Re: All of the words spoken so far

I don't remember anyone claiming Apple were about to go bust. I *do* remember vast amounts of hype, from people and most the media about how wonderful Apple were and how rich and big they were, when the share price went up. Given how such importance was apparently placed to share price, it was only fair to poke fun when it collapsed.

If people are now back-pedalling and saying share price doesn't matter after all, great, that's what we were saying all along.

This isn't really news about Samsung - I don't recall vast amounts of hype trying to portray them as the largest company ever when their share price was up. And I don't have a favourite company - what is this, football teams?

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Samsung isn't alone: HTC profits take a huge dive

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Re: Too man bad low end android smart phones... old high end ones good enough.

"Says who? Microsoft or Nokia? The reality is there are much better Android jellybean entry level phones."

Says who? Samsung or Google?

Actually I love Android (although I've only experience of high end devices - the low end really do look terrible, some even still with lower resolutions than my 5 year old Nokia 5800), but I'm amused that you criticise the OP for stating his opinion with "says who", but then you come back stating opinion as fact too.

"We can't even GIVE away Windows Phone in our store. The stockroom is full of them gather dust. I would also bet money that Mirosoft and Nokia count them as "sold" on their earnings reports."

Yes funny that, their earnings would report how many they'd sold. This is typically the difference between shipped and sold, and all manufacturers count how many they shipped, so MS or Nokia wouldn't be doing anything unhanded. But, if you prefer to go by sales, you can look up those stats too. Actual evidence, much better than anonymous single anecdotes.

And if your store really is continuing to buy more phones that aren't being sold, you really are being stupid. (And if you're not, then we'd soon see that effect in a slump in number of "shipped" devices, anyway.)

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"I love my Macbook Pro ... the iPhone and iPad are absolutely the right devices for some people, my wife included"

You're no fan of Apple, but you take every opportunity to advertise that you have an Apple device, and how wonderful their products are... Whilst the OP was obvious flamebait, you do demonstrate the classic attitude that its users portray. Users of other products don't go on and on about it all the time.

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Windows 8 apps pass 100K, Windows 8 passes Vista

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Re: I can see Ballmer now...

"It is a failure - the resellers and manufacturers have been saying this since launch."

That demonstrates my point perfectly - we have claims of it being a failure, based on hand-picked quotes (e.g., from one who was advertising their new Chromebooks), but the actual hard evidence time and time again suggests this is not the case.

"Comparisons with the much unloved Vista are appropriate. Check the stats for the uptake of Windows 7 in the same time frame."

Do you have a source? And are you arguing "It's not as successful as 7" or "It's a failure"? I can hear the back-pedalling already.

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8 months ago, what we heard was "Windows 8 will be a failure." When I pointed out that it runs on 90% of PCs, so is bound to do well no matter what, I was told "That doesn't matter, PC sales are dying and no one's forced to buy Windows, everyone will buy ipads or chromebooks, and other people will stick with XP or 7, or switch to Macs or Linux".

I find it funny that now, people argue the complete opposite in order to criticise 8 but still claim the same conclusion of it being a failure.

Pass me the magnifying glass, I'm trying to see the Chromebook entry in the pie chart...

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Re: they may have sold them but are they being used?

"Even with the touch screen, it is a vile experience. For example if you start an MP3, the player goes full screen immediately."

Like every version of Windows, it depends what player is used to play. Actually even though I'm still using Windows Media Player as the default, it doesn't run full screen, so I'm not sure what's up with that. Other players like MPC or whatever will run in a window just the same as before too. I'm not saying it's perfect - it sounds like the choice of default apps could do with better thought. But that's a far cry from the "it's unusable, everyone will switch to Linux" claims.

As for the title question, these stats *are* based on usage, and not on sales.

"However you have to spend time to replace what has been removed (DVD play is also omitted),"

Blame software patents for that. MS did the right thing here - rather than having to charge everyone extra money, which then has to go to the patent owners, people can instead just download a free player like VLC to do it (which, since it's free, and hosted outside the US, can avoid patent fees).

"For a business user, it would be madness, if you have to rely on freeware added to it to make it usable"

Mine's usable just fine, thanks. But I'm just someone who actually uses it, rather than someone who just saw it.

Individual employees are free to customise it if they wish. By your logic, because you need freeware added to make Windows 7 start menu look like XP, businesses might as well switch to Linux.

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It's particularly odd that, even if one doesn't like Windows 8, the differences between changing to an entirely new OS are going to be far greater than learning the differences with Windows 8 (or simply spending 5 minutes to install one of the free utilities to change things back to 7 or XP).

And then there's the point that OS X and Unity also load apps by clicking on big icons, anyway.

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That's the ""thin and light" notebook market", not Ultrabooks (which are a different thing - an Intel trademark for a subset of laptops that doesn't include anything from Apple).

Given that Apple's 56% only translates into 6% total, this market can't be that big. They've probably been helped now that it's getting hard to buy netbooks, which were what everyone used to buy for a thin and light laptop. We hear a lot of how tablets are eating into PCs, but I suspect Apple have a lot more to worry about - it seems to me that smartphones and tablets do a lot more to reduce the need for an expensive ultra-portable, than they do a larger laptop/PC. (It also seems odd to have Apple fans telling us we should all buy ipads, when it's Apple users who seem most keen to have a laptop they can take everywhere...)

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Re: Hate Win8? Get Classic Shell.

Honest question - what is shit about the "whole UI"? Given that programs work just the same way as before? Yes there's the new UI for "Windows store apps", but if you don't like them, don't use them.

"Why pay for Win8 when it does nothing over Win7 other than have the Microsoft Store and a butt-ugly UI design?"

It has plenty more. Sure, it might not be worth upgrading, but that's true with every new OS that comes out. I didn't see the point in upgrading from 2000 to XP. Many people were happy with XP and didn't upgrade to Vista or 7. But I don't see those people foaming at the mouth to tell people how their more up to date version is awful.

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Re: I can see Ballmer now...

Whilst surpassing Vista might seem a joke statement given that Vista was viewed as being doomed, the point is the timeframe - Vista was around for over 2.5 years, compared to barely 8 months for Windows 8. Whilst Windows 7 may be a lot higher, that was around for 3 years. (And reports have suggested that Windows 8's uptake rate is on par with Windows 7 - and that was with 7 following on from Vista, which you'd think people were keen to upgrade from or skip over from XP; 8 has no such "advantage".)

OS X may be doing better, but that's every version of OS X compared to 8 months of Windows 8. The most recent version, 10.8, has only 3.14% share, despite released almost a year ago.

In some sense, this really shouldn't be surprising. Given we already know that Windows is the 90% dominant OS, you'd expect there to be lots of software for it, even for just the Windows 8 only stuff. And you'd expect it to do well.

But that's not what people claimed. People, the media, insisted Windows 8 would be a flop. It would be a failure - not just in relative terms, but absolute terms. PCs were dead, they said. Ipads and Chromebooks were the future. Even after the initial sales reports appeared, they still insisted it was a flop. "Those are just licences sold, doesn't mean people are using it" they claimed.

Now we have stats based on usage rather than licences sold, and I bet people will still stick their head in the sand and claim it was a flop. And when Apple next release a product that takes 76 days to sell a million, it'll be hailed as a runaway success...

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"apps"?

"You could, of course, argue that Apple and Google created the consumer hunger for apps, and Microsoft merely fed it – and you'd be right."

You would? It's bad enough that the mainstream media think "apps" are something different to software, and that it was invented or popularised by Apple, but I expect more from the Register! (Though I suppose at least they acknowledge the existence of Google.)

Windows has far more apps than 100,000; this figure is for the Windows 8 only apps (or alternatively, for the apps that are in the MS Store). Just like the number of apps in the Apple Mac store presumably isn't the grand total of apps available for OS X. (Or similarly, there's plenty of Linux software that isn't distributed by the central repositories.)

A more realistic statement might be that Apple and Google created and made accepted the idea of having everyone release their software through them, so they can cream 30% revenue ... whether that's a good thing or not is another matter. Alternatively, a more common trend that's now started to come over to Windows 8 is the idea of having an "app" to replace a website. But I don't think it was Apple or Google who came up with that idea - it probably started because viewing websites on small mobile devices is harder. But then it spilled over into producing these "apps" for tablets (I guess it was easy to port for Android and IOS), and now Windows 8 - even though we've never had this trend for earlier Windows versions (or indeed OS X or whatever). I don't know why this is - probably because the non-software company who demand "let's have an app for our website" think an "app" is something invented by Apple that only runs on IOS, Android or Windows 8 (I do wonder if this will come back to bite Apple, since I don't see anyone writing these "apps" for OS X).

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Flogging an iTunes app? Just 4k downloads will get you in Top 10

Mark .
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Though the flipside is, why pay when you can get something for free. I think that as Android grows, whilst we might see more people spending, increased supply of developers will mean an end to "get rich quick" - people will pay for a commercial quality product with months or years of development, but not for some quick thing coded up in days.

One of the things I don't like though is there's no way in Google search to distinguish between free and ad-supported, with most of the latter not even telling you. Annoying as a user, but also annoying for freeware or Open Source devs, who are giving a product for free, but get lost in the noise.

As for cheap bastards, special mention should go to the ones who download my completely free and ad-free apps, say they like it, but give me one star review (in one case with an insult) because it also required a 3rd party library (Qt in my case) which they then don't like either because they don't like downloading another app or (ironically) they think it might have ads (even though I clearly document the requirement). It's like, I'm sorry I wasted 10 seconds of their precious time downloading something completely for free, have fun with your other apps that are infested with ad-ware. Oh, and then there was the one who gave one star because I didn't reply to an email six months ago. I feel so sorry that something completely free doesn't give him much in the way of customer service, especially when I never even received such an email...

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Mark .
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Re: Not as bad as it sounds

Seeing something like the median average would be far more useful. We already know that a lucky few can make millions, but that's not so useful for the majority of people who end up being lured by the promise of making money. When the few applications that are already top are the ones who get all the publicity, you need a big marketing campaign to do well.

Also does this take into account ad revenue, when comparing different platforms? (And personally, I prefer a platform where more things are available for free.)

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Firefox OS starts third-place race against Windows Phone

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Re: This makes a very good netbook OS

Though when it comes to most of the "website wrapper" apps offered in replacement of a website, I'm waiting for the native app to catch up with the power and functionality of the website / web browser...

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Mark .
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The last five years

"Nokia were previous #1 globally without even having a US presence..."

Indeed, also on that note, I'm sad to see the article repeating the myth: "For five years, it has been Apple's iPhone and ad giant Google's Android OS which have held the top positions in the mobile world, and carriers don't like that."

Which is not even remotely true. The top position was Symbian until 2011, then overtaken by Android. Iphone only moved into 2nd place some time *after* that, after Symbian being dropped. Apple never had the top position. Before, it's been 3rd, 4th or even 5th place, in that 5 year time frame.

The statement might be more true if looking solely at the US, although BlackBerry also had a significant share there until more recently.

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Google 'disappoints' US congressman over Glass privacy controls

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Re: Scary

I think the point is (which I agree with) that a phone is also likely to have lots of personal and private information, including photos/videos. Maybe it's not as ever-present as Glass, but it's still something that people use an awful lot.

Point 3 is a worry, but not to do with the argument about resale - if someone has secretly recorded, that's already a violation of privacy anyway.

I also wonder how they intend to enforce this? And if they put in technical measures, how that will comply with various countries and any laws on right to resale...

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India's low cost tablet dream lives on with Aakash IV

Mark .
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Nothing wrong with resistive, each type has their advantages and disadvantages. Best of all are capacitive screens that now offer best of both worlds (working with pens, and gloves), but I doubt we'd see that on a low cost device.

Big problem is if the software/OS is written to assume multitouch is present. Well designed UIs shouldn't (as then there are other advantages, e.g., being able to use the device one handed, at least for smaller devices). I wish Google would roll out the one-touch-zoom method that's in Maps out to the entire Android OS.

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