57 posts • joined 3 Nov 2011
Re: In any case, my old Xperia has survived plenty of similar drops
Mine hasn't. Ultimately, unless you get a properly designed tough phone, nothing made of glass, plastic, thin metal, and various delicate parts is going to consistently survive being dropped from a metre or two. In particular, comments like this (from the article):
"And dent – or perhaps crack – the reputation of the new iPhones' Gorilla Glass screens"
really betray the lack of understanding most people seem to have on the matter. No, this won't do anything about the reputation of the screens, because it's completely irrelevant. The point of Gorilla glass, sapphire, and similar, is that they are hard - they rank highly on the Moh's scale of hardness. That doesn't mean anything about how easy it is to break them, it's solely about how easy it is to SCRATCH them - a material higher on the list cannot be scratched by one on the lower. Diamond, the hardest material known, can still easily be broken if you hit it with a hammer. Gorilla glass is fairly hard, so it's less likely to get scratched if you put in a pocket with keys or something, but that says nothing about its ability to take an impact. Hard materials can easily be more brittle than softer ones.
Not much point worrying about the off-road capabilities really, it's not going to be able to get up a hill in the first place.
Maybe if the updater didn't constantly try to foist malware on you on the rare occasions it actually works at all, people would be a little more inclined to actually use it.
Yet another "rugged" device that is significantly less waterproof than many regular phones. Sony, Samsung and Motorola can all manage waterproofing at no significant extra cost, but a two grand tablet specifically designed to be rugged somehow can't manage it at all? The buttons look rather shit as well. Far too small to be used while wearing gloves.
So yeah, this is going to fail hard. Too expensive and pseudo-ruggedised for normal people, but completely useless for anyone who actually needs a real rugged device.
"The best way to prevent being held to ransom is to move away from M$' effective monopoly."
The best way to avoid being held ransom is to be the 5th largest employer in the world and to tell anyone who tries to go and fuck themselves. As the title of the article notes, the NHS is capable of kicking Microsoft in the wallet far harder than MS can kick the NHS. MS can threaten all they like, but they will never risk losing that amount of business if the NHS just refuses to bend over.
A useful education
Learning how to solve problems by copying bits of code you found on the internet is probably the most useful part of this GCSE.
"Google wants battery life to be improved"
"a revved up user interface with shadowing for icons to make them appear to hover over the page; brighter colors; 3D viewing support; and 60 FPS animations onscreen."
They're going to improve battery life by adding a bunch of pointless battery-draining bullshit to the UI?
Not sure why Qi wireless charging products are labelled as "doomed". Plenty of people have signed up for A4WP and on paper it has some advantages over Qi, but as things stand paper is all it has while Qi has actual products. Some of them from members of the A4WP consortium. You can't have a format war if one of the participants refuses to actually release anything, and it's looking more and more like Qi is going to win this one by default.
Not just outdated...
Aren't carphones actually illegal these days? You can use a mobile with a hands free setup, but an actual old-school carphone with a handset would get you a swift fine if anyone saw you using it. Once they were done laughing.
"low-power GPS chips meant regular runners and cyclists could use apps like Strava and MapMyRun for more than an hour at a time."
You mean unlike every phone with GPS I've ever had, including a Galaxy S2, which can happily run said apps for a whole day with battery to spare at the end? Reducing power use is always going to be a good thing, but when you're publishing product reviews it's generally best to describe how things actually are rather than making ridiculous exaggerations.
Re: Fitness Fad
Rather than ignoring that lots of people are lazy, maybe that's the whole point and they're trying to encourage people to be more active. If you can make exercise easier and/or more interesting, people will do it more.
Re: Cameras are a bit harder
Yet I already own three waterproof cameras - one old enough to have just about died, one replacement for same, and one Xperia Z1. Four if you count a GoPro with its waterproof case. Sure, they may well need to keep the current technique of physically preventing the water getting in to some places rather than just dipping everything in magical repellent goo, but given that we've been doing that perfectly well for quite a while now it can hardly be considered a huge problem.
Re: Maybe a silly question
"why don't these have a front-mounted camera"
Cost and complexity. Cameras cost money, take up space, use battery power, use processing power, and so on. It's far from clear just how big a market VR headsets will actually have. Gaming already has a clear market, while augmented reality is very much at the "maybe it will be popular in the future" stage. Increasing cost and compromising performance in their core area would not be a good idea. Ultimately, a specialist device that focusses on one thing will almost always be better at that thing than a device which tries to do everything, so they need to establish that they can do that one thing and that there is actually a market for it before they start worrying about other features.
Plus, look how many issues Google glasses are having, both in terms of fashion and with safety and so on. And those are just clear glasses with a mild distraction attached. A headset that completely blocks your entire view and replaces it with a much lower quality, narrower field of view, plus looks incredibly silly to be walking around with, is not something that's going to take off in a hurry. Such things may take off eventually, but that's really not going to be a good way to introduce the product to market.
Re: What's the big deal with charging every day?
"And I used to use a mechanical watch, which I had to wind every day."
Notice the words "used to" there. How many people actually use such a watch these days? Unless it's just a fashion statement, no-one wants a watch that requires constant maintenance. You can get a watch for £5 that will last several years without needing to be touched at all, and will be more accurate than a mechanical one as well.
"I have a smart phone, which I charge every night... Is charging every day really a deal breaker?"
Yes. Note that one of the most common complaints about phones is that the battery does not last anywhere near as long as people would like. We accept having to charge them regularly because at the moment there's simply no alternative, but there are constant efforts to make them last longer and to make charging less inconvenient when it is necessary. Replacing a watch that never needs charging with one that needs charging every day, in addition to the phone which will also need charging, is just adding even more inconvenience. And as the article notes, it doesn't add any real convenience to compensate, it just does the same as the phone you already have, but not quite as well. Voluntarily paying for extra unnecessary inconvenience is not something consumers do.
"Some people scoffed then that backlit colour screens would never take off, as they would eat batteries."
Some people may have done so, but the fact is that backlit colour screens do things that previous screens didn't. People are willing to compromise in some areas if they get enough benefits in others. But the only benefit a smartwatch has is that you don't have to take it out your pocket. In return you have to compromise battery life, screen size, processor power (how hot do you want your wrist?), cost (you still need a phone to connect to it), and so on. And of course, even that sole benefit is hardly even such a thing at all. You still need both your hands to actually use a smartwatch - it's attached to one and you need the other to do anything with it. So while you don't need to actually hold it in your hand, having it on your wrist offers no real convenience over having it in your pocket anyway. People scoffed at backlit screens because they thought the cost would outweigh the benefits. People scoff at smartwatches because there are no benefits, only costs.
Xenon 2 was an awesome game, but I really get the feeling that old-school developers hated keyboards with a passion. Between this and Daley Thompson's Decathlon, my poor keyboard took such a beating.
No wonder they're just giving it away, that's less than a new console, let alone a decent workstation PC. More memory and scope for playing with parallelisation, but certainly not something anyone's going to pay actual money for these days.
"You can't ban our phones, because if we don't break the law we won't make enough money."
Arguments about the general stupidity of patent law aside, I really don't understand how this can be considered a valid defence. The only reason the One isn't being banned is because doing so would damage HTC's business. Surely that's the whole point? If you can't run a successful business with stealing from other people, you don't get to run a business at all.
Re: What PC games apart from FPS will actually work well on steambox?
"I know that Valve are aware of the problem that a lot of PC games are click fests as they have designed a fancy new controller to enable this in front of the TV but... I just don't see their touch pad controller working anywhere near as well as a mouse."
It's a PC. If you want to use a mouse, just plug one in.
As for the article:
"iBP’s hardware incorporates a multi-core AMD processor"
Is this really something we still need to say? I'm not sure it's even possible to buy a single-core processor any more. What that sentence actually boils down to is "PC has a processor". Yeah, no shit.
"Output is 1980 x 1080 for modern tellies"
Wouldn't it make more sense for the output to be the 1920x1080 that modern tellies actually use?
Superconductor != supercapacitor
That is all.
Are we talking about a different Firefox?
"Tabs are also higher up the page, saving a few pixels for showing web pages."
On my current version (25.0.1, no idea if it's the latest), tabs are jammed squarely against the top of the page. On the picture in the article, there's a huge chunk of wasted space above the tabs. Far from moving them higher to save pixels, it appears they've done the exact opposite.
Are you sure you reviewed the right phone?
"The IP58 certification"
As I also pointed out on the Xperia Ultra review, it does not have an IP58 certification. It has an IP55/8 certification. That means that IPx6 is not covered, so it cannot stand up to water jets.
"As with all modern Android flagships the Z1 packs an IR blaster"
No it doesn't.
As for the screen, I really have no idea what anyone is complaining about. I can clearly read everything on the screen no matter how far I tilt it, right up until it's side on. It's obviously not as bright as looking at it head on, but there's absolutely nothing wrong with it. And that's with the brightness turned down as low as it will go. I haven't compared it with other phones so others may well be even better, but unless there's something seriously wrong with your eyes I can't imagine how anyone could have a problem with this one.
Is that a pocket in your pocket?
So this is a device which only works if it can connect to another device in your pocket. And they're advertising it by saying you don't need pockets. Maybe someone should let the advertising team know what it is they're supposed to be advertising?
Easy cost saving...
Maybe if they stopped sending me an entire forest worth of junk mail every week they wouldn't need to raise prices?
Also, I already get 110Mb/s from BT, so presumably the "twice as fast as BT" claim is actually "twice as fast as the BT packages that only offer half the speed of our fastest ones, but not really any different from their better packages". Technically true, but not exactly a meaningful claim.
Comparison to Xperia Z?
Seems a bit silly really. What it should be compared to is the Z1, since as far as I can tell the hardware is identical. The Ultra is just a Z1 with a big screen and a shit camera.
Also, it's not entirely true to say it has an IP58 rating. As with the Z1, it has an IP 55/58 rating. That means it's good for long-term immersion in still water, but unlike the S4 Active it can't take the high pressure jets that an IPx6 rating can.
That's what they want you to think
"A builder and planning company have apparently yet to be found and the 300 billion won (£171.6m) project will take at least two years to get off the ground."
For all we know, it's already been built.
"But he turned out to be very wrong by insisting: “There are times when people need a large screen and full-size keyboard. As smartphones get smaller, this need increases. The Foleo completes the picture, creating a mobile-computing system that sets a new standard in simplicity.”
Pundits and punters disagreed."
In what way was he wrong? As you note in nearly the next sentence, that's exactly what people wanted and is exactly what tablets do. The Foleo may have sucked, or simply been unlucky, but the idea was absolutely solid.
That's actually considered a selling point? Anyone remember the good old days when a watch would happily last years on one battery, and didn't need you to carry a separate even more expensive device to actually work?
Re: Vauxhall and Marantz?
Indeed. I also owned an Astra which for some reason described itself as "Champagne" instead of the rather more accurate "Vomit brown". Pretty sure the CVC doesn't have a leg to stand on here.
If there was an actual keyboard there they might have been on to something, but I just don't see the point of this. Two touchscreens and a half-assed input device? Are they trying to compete with the WiiU or something?
20 ways to save even more money
Don't buy pointless shit you don't need.
I should totally publish this. I wonder if Nature will take it.
Harsh, but fair
"malicious tasks, such as posting tweets"
I know it makes perfect sense in context, but that still made me smile.
And this is why I hate people...
"Seventy-eight per cent of those questioned said they turn their phone back on before disembarking the plane"
You've just spent several hours on plane and you have at least another half hour waiting to pick up luggage and all that shit. What is so incredibly important that you can't wait 5 fucking minutes for the plane to actually park? I don't care that it's probably safe to do so, anyone who's such an impatient twat deserves to get booted off the plane before it's stopped as well.
As for safety, there have been indications that certain specific combinations of handsets can cause noticeable interference on some aircraft systems, usually involving beating between handsets from countries that use different frequencies. I'm not aware of any evidence that they've actually cause any problems in the real world, but people dismissing the idea that there could be any problem out of hand are just plain wrong. Sure, the aircraft itself produces more stray radiation. And it's specifically designed and tested to make sure it's safe. What can't be tested is every possible combination of external radiation sources. As it turns out, the evidence now suggests that it probably is safe to have phones on board, but the worry that it might not have been was perfectly reasonable, especially given the potential consequences. Worries about other electronic equipment which emit orders of magnitude less power, on the other hand, have always been pretty silly.
The benchmark results are entirely real. Samsung simply made sure that they actually measured the maximum possible computing power of the device, which is the whole point of benchmarks in the first place. The fact that it's necessary for Samsung to do this isn't a problem with them, it simply shows just how badly benchmarks suck at doing what they're supposed to. Hell, just look at one of the "problems" -
"When running v.2.7.0, however, the Exynos 5 Octa switched over to its less-powerful Cortex-A7 cores."
I'm seriously supposed to be upset that Samsung made sure a performance benchmark used the high power cores instead of the low power battery saving ones? Why the fuck was the benchmark trying to use the wrong cores in the first place? Unless you're suggesting that in the real world the phone will never use the high power cores at all, any benchmark that doesn't use them is fundamentally broken.
As for replacing Samsung with Apple, I'm with Steve Knox there. Apple simply have no need to do this because they compete on different terms. An Android phone is an Android phone. They can't compete based on ecosystem, apps, and so on, so performance is a meaningful and potentially important metric. Apple phones run an entirely separate OS with an entirely different ecosystem built around it, so trying to compare raw power would be completely pointless. I still wouldn't see anything wrong with Apple doing this, I just wouldn't see the point.
"Every object is original and unique"
"pick a toy from the designs offered by MyMiniFactory.com"
Hmm, that's certainly an interesting interpretation of "original and unique".
Re: Perhaps it's just me
Not only would an offline computer be just as secure, but at £500 per typewriter it wouldn't really be any more expensive. And you can already get printers to do watermarks so this typewriter fingerprint thing doesn't seem to add much either.
How to identify a fake charger
1) Plug charger into phone;
2) Check if you've been electrocuted.
What Pebble doesn’t yet provide is
"With more than 900,000 apps and 50 billion downloads, customers know where they can purchase their favorite apps."
Well yes. If they have an Apple phone, they can do so using Apple's app store. If they have an Android phone, they can't, but can use someone else's instead. Trademarks are only relevant when the things being sold are in direct competition with each other. Since no device (that I'm aware of at least) is capable of using both Apple's and Amazon's app store, there is no competition.
Electrons are not hadrons
The ILC is a lepton collider, not a hadron collider. At least pretend to do some research before writing this crap.
As for Japan not being the best location, the trouble with the ILC is that pretty much every other country stopped funding the idea years ago. Since Japan are the only ones still working on it, of course they're going to suggest it's built in Japan in their tentative proposal. If anyone actually decides to join and the thing has any chance of actually happening, the final location will depend entirely on who is involved and what options there actually are to choose from.
First! No, wait...
"Two security researchers (one from China and one from India) found the same bug and always the same reply: Someone else found it, we are sorry!"
So he's upset that two people who definitely weren't the first to find the bug were told that they weren't the first to find the bug? I'm not entirely sure how he thinks this supports his claims that PayPal treated anyone unfairly.
I don't get it
The very best of the sample crashes once a week? I have three PCs running pretty much 24/7. Two have never crashed, and the other only does so when I do something that would be expected to be risky, such as trying to get old games working. What the hell are these people doing with their computers?
"The feature was created last week"
On Feb 21st apparently. One day before, Cracked published this:
"MeRAM has the potential to succeed NAND flash"
Except you only just reported that phase-change RAM is already being shipped in real devices. Perhaps you meant to say that MeRAM has the potential to succeed NAND's successor?
Twice as fast?
So still shit then. Let us know when it's more like 100 times faster and no longer significantly slower than just visiting the regular site in a browser.
Re: Is it me or is this a statistics fail by Lewis?
Exactly the point I was going to make. The 8Gt/yr increase has been occurring over a period of 8 years (that this study looked at). That means the total increase was at least 64Gt, quite a lot larger than the 6Gt error on each point and easily enough to see a clear trend.
Someone sells a board game of pairs? What kind of idiot would actually pay money for that rather than just finding a pack of cards?
The problem with the "budget" telco
Is that it's not actually budget at all. They've always had a poor reputation for service, but got away with it because they actually were the cheap choice. But now their crappy, slow, unreliable, capped broadband costs the same as a much more reliable, much faster, uncapped fibre connection from BT or Virgin. When your only selling point is price, it's hardly a surprise that raising prices to be the same as everyone else isn't going to have great results.
I really hope he's taking the piss
A message is sent from A to B. Calling them Alice and Bob is basically just a bit of fun, to make things less dry and a bit more human and relatable. Eve is the interceptor because sometimes there can be a C and D that you need to leave space for. While changing them to different letters wouldn't exactly be the end of the world, changing them so that they share the same letter actually would be. How are you supposed to make sense of a scenario where S sends R a message but it's intercepted by R?
You can get a Transformer Infinity with double the storage for the same price. You'll need to order it from the US, but mine still arrived in 3 days so that's not exactly a big deal. The Nexus and Kindle Fire work because they're actually cheaper. Why the hell would anyone waste their money on this thing?
"The dock part of the Infinity partnership is very similar to those that ship with the lesser Transformers though they are not interchangeable."
Not even slightly true. Firstly, it's been made clear since well before release that the Infinity is compatible with the Prime dock (although not others). Secondly, the reason for this is now clear since there is, in fact, only one dock. The dock for the TF700 is exactly the same TF201 dock as for the previous models. They've changed the name on the box, but the model numbers are exactly the same and they didn't even update the manual, which only mentions the Transformer Prime, not the Infinity.
As for price, yes, it's seriously overpriced in the UK. Just order from amazon.com instead of .co.uk and you can get it for close to half the price (you need to make sure to order from a reseller though, since Amazon themselves refuse to ship to other countries. I've found EXcaliberPC very fast and reliable). Unfortunately you're forced to use the ASUS charger even though it's just a USB cable so you'll need a US to UK adaptor, but as long as you can manage to find one for less than around £200 (I think mine cost £2) you'll still come out ahead.
It's also worth bearing in mind that although the Prime is sold along with the dock, the Infinity requires you to buy them separately. So while the Prime costs £500 for tablet and dock, the Infinity is £600 for just the tablet. If you buy in the UK, that will probably mean an extra £150 for the dock (tablet is $599 in the US while dock is $150 at full price).
"However, I do rather expect this to be improved upon as Amazon surely has an iTunes-style music downloads plan for its portable devices."
Given that the mp3 player hasn't changed in the 5 years since the first Kindle was released, I wouldn't get your hopes up too much there. Plus consider that with virtually no storage and no SD slot, it would be completely useless as a media player anyway. It's there because they can, not because they actually plan on doing anything with it.
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