27 posts • joined Friday 1st October 2010 14:46 GMT
Re: Better bargain still...
The Guardian's been losing money hand over fist for the last few years. I dooub they're too worried about tax, given that it's payable on profits....
Re: Screen is worse?
I'd be amazed if there are many people making a purchase decision based simply on tiny screen differences. Basically most people will decide on platform and go from there. Simply put, if you choose Android, and you are even remotely interested in a 10 incher with a decent display, this is the only choice.
Making a decision on screen only is like choosing between BMW and Audi based on top speed. Statistical correct but pointless.
Where's your evidence for this? Did you consider that maybe, just maybe, all other 'flagship' handsets are simply sold with insane margins (the most obvious example being the iPhone, of course). Maybe LG still get 10% margin on the Nexus 4 whilst selling sh!tloads more thanks to their association with the Nexus brand than the near identical Optimus G5 upon which it is based.
The pricing logic actually starts to make sense with the Nexus 4-7-10 family rather than the weird vortex of nonsense that is the iPod Touch - iPhone - iPad Mini - iPad irrationality.
Re: Oh dear
For all our benefit, would you mind listing all the devices available to buy which come pre-installed with Android Jelly Bean?
I'm no Apple fanboi (hate them with a fiery passion) but even I can understand why the Reg might want to cover stories relating to their products. They are one of the biggest companies in the world, and certainly the biggest in IT. Maybe what they do 'matters' and therefore is worth reporting.
Get over it.
I have an Asus TF Prime which shares the 'same' IPS panel (Asus makes the G-Nex-7). I definitely have the same 'washed out' issue, although I notice it mostly when going from SGS2 to the Prime. The Play Store icon is the most obvious offender, the 3 colours just do not stand out - whereas on a display which is calibrated correctly, all looks fine.
I wouldn't be too hopeful of a s/w fix. There have been mutliple firmware updates to the Prime, none of which have made a difference.......disappointing.
For just over 200 quid (or less if you're lucky) you can pick up a Samsung Galaxy S2 second hand on ebay. Outclasses everything here by some margin, and runs ICS either officially with bloatware, or through ROMs without the bloat. ICS is a massive step-up from Gingerbread and shouldn't be overlooked as a consideration. That's what I did, and managed to cut loose from operator contracts as well.
Well a quick lookback at previous Gartner PC shipment forecasts reveals a certain amount of success and some failure.
In 2009 they predicted sales of 336m for 2010. Actual sales: 352m
In 2010 they predicted sales of 409m for 2011. Actual sales 353m approx.
In 2012 they are predicting sales of 368m in 2012. Actual sales of course are unknown.
This doesn't seem to occupy any Microsoft conspiracy ground at all. Surely just a decent guess as to the future. They probably weren't able to predict an almost total halt in economic growth last year, what a bunch of losers eh.
The most irritating thing about the Apple crapola is the rubbish about how the iPad outsold any single PC manufacturer so therefore we're the biggest. Hmm, if only the PC industry was represented by just one manufacturer, then Apple would have a point. As it is, they don't. Good luck selling your iPads to cash-strapped developing world residents as a standalone machine.
It's a sad day indeed when even the Reg is jumping on the 'heck, why would you even need more storage' bandwagon.
I seem to remember, not too long ago, that the worlds biggest selling music player was available in sizes up to 160gb. There seemed to be some kind of acceptance that more storage was better (so one could carry around all the music/video/etc you want). Slowly that music functionality has become integrated into a phone. All good, 2 devices become one.
For the iOS crowd Apple will happily fine you £700 for a 64gb iPhone. Not cheap but is a decent amount of non-expandable storage. In the recent past of Android world you could comfort yourself with internal storage + MicroSD. This was a standard feature. Now it seems with Android ICS they (Google) are not so keen on card storage. Apparently we can store all our music in the 'cloud'. Yeah right. Unlike the mobile phone development community, I live in the real world. The one where a 3G signal is about as consistent as very inconsistent thing on a changeable day. And I live in the populous SE of England. Not allowing removable storage is a mistake, the infrastucture is not there yet for it to be replaced by a remote server.
Please Samsung, continue to fly the flag for MicroSD...and please, everyone else, stop this irritating practise.
To add to the previous commenters: cloud storage does not = replacement for sd storage. Mobile phone, designed for use on the move, UK's 3G signal, designed for use in very few areas and absolutely not a network capable of streaming content to a mobile device. I want to replace iPod + phone with: phone. Local storage of 32gb minimum is a must.
Sorry HTC (and Sony for that matter), no SD card, no sale. Seems only Samsung flying the storage flag now (and even they ditched it on the Galaxy Nexus). Maybe it's an ICS 'specification'?
Can anyone tell me why they don't put the same screen tech (Super IPS) in these as they do in the Asus Transformer Prime (and Transformer before it). The viewing angles on that go up to "179 degrees" - what's the story, is it a battery-sapping issue?
Well clearly they don't cost that much, since Apple charges a grand for a MB Air and makes 44% net margin across its business, I'm pretty sure there must some decent profit in anything costing over £600 from the ultrabook vendors (why else would they be pushing it so hard!)
This would also concur with the standard Apple tax theory of around 50% premium.
What the what?
I remember a few years ago, Apple used to make stuff, some of it was overpriced and overdesigned (laptops), some of it was really pretty good (iPods) and some of it no-one cared about either way. I had no strong opinions, just valued the beauty of choice. I just cannot understand this legal approach - now they're the big dog they're throwing their litigation toys out of the pram every 5 mins. This is making money only for the legal profession - and presumably p!issing off a lot of potential customers. A senior judge needs to throw this sh!t out of court and put a lid on it before every damn tech manufacturer sues everyone else for manufacturing anything even vaguely rectangular with a screen. I sure won't be buying Apple (obviously this boycott will hurt them massively....)
I've had a Transformer since they came out a month or two ago. I concur with everything everyone has said about quality of screen, coming from the Vega it is night and day.
I've never had any problems with Honeycomb and have never really understood all this 'beta' OS bashing, it's always worked a charm for me and is simply no contest between an HC tab and a cheapo Android 2.1-2 knock-off. Yes, the price is a bummer, Apple really did unfortunately set the benchmark, with few manufacturers willing to give up some margin simply to undercut by the iPad by any real amount. The mid-market is starting to arrive however and I imagine prices will drift towards 300 quid as time goes by and Christmas arrives.
The final observation - stop bashing HC for having few optimised apps. Its not like the iPad world where iphone apps are either zoomed in horribly, or run in a small box. Android 3 handles apps made for smaller screensizes perfectly well, to the extent that an Apple fanboi colleague was genuinely impressed. Not having HC apps is not a problem for me in the slightest, whereas for an iPad it most certainly would be.
And finally, for people who inherently dislike the iTunes way, comparisons with the iPad are futile as they are simply not a consideration. Compare the Transformer to its immediate competitors and you'll quickly arrive at the same conclusion I did - its simply the best product in the market today.
Not enough memory?
Basic cynical built-in obsolesence by htc, or just a simple shift of development priorities to focus on their current crop of handsets? Surely most users bothered enough to follow HTC on Facebook, and to be that concerned about Android 2.3 could probably cope with the hardly arduous process of installing a custom rom on their Desire? Gingerbread builds from Cyanogenmod and the rest have been available for months and run just fine on a Desire.
Padfone. Yes. Now
I'm with Anonymous John. I've been waiting for a company to build something exactly like this and assumed they weren't simply because its possible a lost revenue opportunity (ie you could sell 2 products, phone tab, rather than 1.5, phone + bigger screen).
If this delivers anything close to a useable product I am in with bells on.
Android laughing too...
To Amaross and Carol - wanting the 10in Android HC tab - your luck is probably in wth the Acer Iconias and Asus Transformer. More or less £350 quid depending on your choice of voucher code and cashback site.
As for the Playbook - I'm genuinely struggling with the marketing logic. First the kiddie friendly name, then the no-email decision. Well I guess it's a niche, albeit one with no market in it.
Priced to sell?
I seem to remember an earlier article suggesting this would cost something like £350. Seems that dream didn't come true.
Re: the comment 'bout the Vega. Given the news last week that Google will not be releasing Honeycomb as AOSP, and the pricing of all current available details on other Honeycomb tabs, I'm beginning to suspect some level of price collusion, or cosy arrangement between major brands and Google. Effectively Google are saying that Billy Chinese OEM Android tabs cannot get hold of the Honeycomb OS. Therefore there is no price competition coming from the cheap no-brand end of the spectrum. This effectively gives Samsung, Motorola, Asus, Acer, LG and so on some protection for their overpriced Honeycomb tabs. The Advent Vega is a no-brand tab with absolutely the specification to run Honeycomb, but by not releasing the AOSP it is being held back on the non-tab Froyo.
Apple has nothing to fear from this of course, so it can set pricing and watch the profits roll in. Android vendors are always at risk of lower priced competition, which may well mean a certain reluctance to invest - something which Google can encourage by holding back Honeycomb.
You only did half a review there...
.....so you got to the bit where you can install the Modaco custom rom, but didn't really explain any of the benefits. I have an Advent Vega, and went in eyes open that a little bit of time with the device and I'd have a properly flexible tablet.
With the Modaco rom you can enable the (fullsize) USB port in host mode: the benefits are numerous. Plug in any old USB key to transfer and view files - check. Plug in a mouse/keyboard - check. Plug in and surf using a 3G dongle - check. Options for expanding the memory - SDHC card and USB storage. Options for extending the iPad memory - err, buy another iPad?
All the usual consideration about openness of Android v walled Apple approach. Example: I can easily swap video content from laptop to desktop to tablet with no need for recoding and formatting, it just works.
Granted the screen isn't going to blow your mind, but it is more than good enough. The underlying hardware is futureproofed for Honeycomb. I chose the form factor BECAUSE it was 16:9, for me, video on the iPad is a bit old-school, with its letterboxing of widescreen footage.
I could not justify spending the massive fines that Apple imposed on the iPad, and nor did I want to. My use case suits the Vega, and so did the price. I would therefore change the scores as follows:
Review based on people who want a cheaper ipad: 65%
Review based on people who can operate a PC and want a decent Android tablet: 85%. (loses points for screen quality).
What about offline viewing
All of the above comments are debating the streaming of iPlayer content, and many rightly point out the contradiction in the BBC saying on the one hand, that only they will only support "open standards", and then, on the other, supporting the closed Apple environment specifically. Clearly keeping up with the media tw@t crowd (and I am part of it, albeit without the Apple fixation) and their iOS fetish is the unwritten rule.
However, what about offline viewing? At present they use a horrible resource hungry desktop app that most netbooks can't play, and the only mobile support is via DRM'd WMV - on what level is that an open standard? There must be a massive market of people who want to download and watch (offline) later but this simply isn't possible on the majority of portable devices. Relying on our decrepit, hopeless 3G network is a ridiculous pipedream, even in the supposedly comprehensively covered southeast, so enabling offline viewing is a must.
So come on BBC, follow your own rhetoric, and if you want to provide offline viewing, do it in such a way that we can use it. Thanks.
Hmmm, not good
Problem 1: I was under the impression under sales regulations that it was effectively illegal to falsely claim a discount from an RRP where none exists. If the entire market is selling a product at £599, how is the Amazon price a discount from the "RRP". False advertising perhaps?
Problem 2: a quick hunt around eBay will net several different Android powered tablets with a a varying level of feature-list. These cost from £85 - 150 depending on screen size. Now these are resistive of screen and most don't include GPS but is that worth a £450 premium?
Samsung have made the fatal error of assuming that Apple pricing sets the market, oh no sir, Apple pricing merely sets the absolute upper limit of extortion, the actual market supported price will be far lower (see Apple Macbook v identical spec laptops, iPhone 4 v similar spec Android kit).
Sorry Samsung, but this is a huge fail.
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