* Posts by Vince

624 posts • joined 16 May 2007

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As Google clamps down, 'Droid developer warns 'breaking day' is coming

Vince

@Phil O'Sophical

"Which is strictly forbidden by my company's IT policy, so if that is the only way to make it work it would be the end of company-provided Android phones"

And I guess you won't be getting iOS devices either then, since you have to use the Apple Push Notification service as far as I know for everything like this. Indeed my basic understanding is that this is the ONLY option with Apple.

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Munich council: To hell with Linux, we're going full Windows in 2020

Vince

Re: Whot ?

Your colleagues using OS-X (it's called macOS now btw) will be using the terrible version of Office for Mac which is utter garbage and is nothing like (in many ways) office on windows.

I use Parallels + Office from Windows on my Mac because the Mac version is totally horrific

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BT agrees to cream off less profit from landline-only customers

Vince

Re: IIRC

Sorry TechnicalBen, the cost of the wholesale line rental from Openreach has not increased.

It's purely a Retail game - BT Consumer puts up pricing, everyone else does by whatever they do less a few pence and claim they're cheaper than BT etc etc.

It's all ultimately subsidising the knock down pricing on broadband, but by putting it on landline rental, nobody can really do much about that and so everyone takes it up the rear.

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Microsoft exec says ARM-powered Windows laptops have multi-day battery life

Vince

Re: Microsoft FAIL

No, and had the SSD chip not blown up on the Lenovo Yoga 11 thing that ran RT (it wasn't just the Surface), the machine would still be in use today.

Instead, I moved to a MacBook 12".

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Misco UK chops majority of workforce, pulls down shutters

Vince

Used to use Misco in an old job, never the cheapest. But we had a "Premier" account. This mostly translated to ... free shipping (as long as you reminded your account manager EVERY time), additional phone calls to make you buy stuff, and promises of freebies you never got...

On the flip side, it was an acceptable supplier and they also sold stuff like chairs I was able to sign off without having to go and ask since it came from an IT supplier so was within my signing rights, hence good chairs for everyone in my office.

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2019: The year that Microsoft quits Surface hardware

Vince

Re: Isn't it obvious

@Naselus

Well "low margin" has nothing to do with "high price"

You can sell something for £20,000 and if it costs you £19,999 it's low margin. If it costs you £1,000 to make, it's high margin.

It's not clear to me what sort of margin on a unit sale of a typical surface there would be, but I imagine it is still loss making.

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Huge Apple news confirmed. Software deal with Accenture is official

Vince

Re: Mfg of highest priced x86 based tablet on planet hook up with one of worlds biggest con-sultants

The deal was with Apple, not Microsoft. Apple don’t make any x86 tablets.

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CrashPlan crashes out of cloudy consumer backup caper

Vince

This statement that you have until October 2018 is not true in the majority of cases - it all depends when your subscription currently ends. Some people will have just over 60 days and that's it.

Moving to the CrashPlan Business option isn't that great if you use other functionality such as Friend or Other Computer backup as well - because that's not in that version, nor if you have over 5TB of storage as you'll have to send the data again.

Moving to Backblaze also doesn't work for quite a few use cases that crop up - that'd include me as Backblaze doesn't offer very long retention times for previous versions, does not allow computer to computer backup, does not allow install on a Server OS (which is great if you happen to have one personally), and many other things.

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Scrutiny? We've heard of it. Dot-UK supremo Nominet goes dark

Vince

Another step closer to removing the "not for profit" status. Closer all the time.

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Revealed: The naughty tricks used by web ads to bypass blockers

Vince

Re: "Most people won't pay for content..."

I don’t even think it’s as complex as people only read it because it’s “free” as in money vs explicit payment eg “paywall”.

I suspect a further major contribution is that many other sites generally have the same content in a slightly different form (although not even that sometimes) so why would I pay site A to read content I can also read on site B, C, and D.

If you’ve ever used a news aggregation app you soon realise they’re not useful because you get every article 10 times... and not in a way where you are getting substantially different views or angles on a piece.

So really, why would I pay?

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No, Apple. A 4G Watch is a really bad idea

Vince

The watch is much more useful than I anticipated actually... some of the bits I like/use:

1. Unlocking my Macbook/MacBook Pro without password faff.

2. Better than getting phone out to pay for stuff (I almost exclusively pay via Apple Pay)

3. Run/Walk tracking

4. General exercise data as background to get an idea of daily burn

5. Silencing all the devices that ring every time someone phones with a quick face cover

6. Provides navigation when walking so no need to get phone out (handy when hands are full)

7. Quick check to see if a notification is worth getting phone out or not

8. Handy to send a text when driving as speech works remarkably well (non-Siri dictation)

9. Music remote (although could be a lot better and work with stuff other than built in music)

10. Can leave phone on charge and still get messages etc

Things that aren’t so good:

1. Using it for phone calls, you both look stupid and it doesn’t work very well

2. App support is pretty low and those that exist are way too slow to load

3. Wish it could be told not to alert when driving (phone knows so wish watch could know)

4. The breathe thing, turned off but seems totally pointless and irritating

5. Having to fully reset the watch which takes ages if you change iPhone is just stupid

6. Honeycomb UI is actually pretty lame

7. Watch constantly lights up when driving as can’t tell between looking at it and turning the wheel

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Vince

Re: I'm sure Apple engineers read The Register...

I agree about:

2. Mail message bodies not downloaded for random reasons.

3. Broken text selection in Safari.

5. Inability to reliable distinguish between bring up control panel gesture and text entry when a keyboard is on screen.

6. Once a piece of text is highlighted in pink, it's very difficult to get rid of the highlight without highlighting something else or losing the selected text.

8. Badly designed and rendered UI in Messages. The new functionality is horribly bolted on.

9. Synchronising 'spinner' often remains on screen even when synchronisation isn't happening.

10. Deeply unreliable WiFi synchronisation with iTunes.

11. Random failure with personal hotspot connection.

13. Automatic redirection to public WiFi networks even if you've set the phone to never join networks without asking.

15. Apps that no longer synchronise across devices; have to download them everywhere separately

1
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Openreach pegs full fibre overhaul anywhere between £3bn and £6bn

Vince

Re: BT in the countryside

@anonymous

Yeah, you say that people in the countryside are hard done by connectivity wise.

Meanwhile, in the country proper, a long way from anyone else, we have a customer with FTTP at a rather nice 330 meg (well it’ll do).

Meanwhile in our city centre location, guess who didn’t enable our cabinet for fibre... and didn’t roll out FTTP either,,,,

It’s not as simple as urban vs rural at all.

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Brace yourselves, Virgin Media prices are going up AGAIN, people

Vince

Re: VM not letting you have broadband sans the phone line

The sales/customer service team at virgin are fobbing you off. They both offer broadband without a phone line, and even sell it as a thing to start with, but also have zero technical reason for you to need one to begin with.

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Vince

Re: Virgin Static IP

Virgin does not offer a static IP on a residential connection, however they're "sticky" in that unless your modem is offline for quite some time, you will almost certainly get reallocated the same one again on reconnect for many weeks/months or more - but it's subject to change "without notice" because it was never a static IP.

You also can't do anything like reverse DNS etc.

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Microsoft drops Office 365 for biz. Now it's just Microsoft 365. Word

Vince

Re: Microsoft 365?

Yeah so the problem you're missing is that Office 365/Microsoft 365/BOPS/Exchange Online/whatever we called it now is often down for smaller subsets of customers rather than giant cluster-**** outages, and they don't get shown on the global data and status.

There are issues very regularly, with everything from provisioning users to missing calendars and everything in-between.

You might not notice all of them as they don't affect everyone, or you don't use that feature/service/function and so on but they're there - it's notorious for random mini outages

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Months late, unaudited: ZX Spectrum reboot firm files accounts

Vince

Re: Accounts?

They look perfectly ok to me!

And for the benefit of The Reg, they’ll not be audited because they’re under the threshold where auditing is required, and like any other business in such a position you don’t get them audited if it isn’t required, there’s no benefit, just a massive cost.

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Microsoft Azure capacity woes hit UK customers. Yes, you read that right

Vince

Re: UK and no Cloud?

Yeah ONLY Microsoft.

If you ignore the recent issues Amazon Web Services had with its capacity and pretend it hasn't happened to them.

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Chap 'fixes' Microsoft's Windows 7 and 8 update block on new CPUs

Vince

Re: So?

In my case, the Windows 10 shenannigans, the multiple changes in direction for Windows Phone/Windows Mobile that have resulted in total destruction of market share and app support, and the "you will rent this software" approach have actually lost my business and I'm switching our entire business to macOS and the Apple ecosystem for everything else too. Thus far, life is considerably better.

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BT's spam blocker IDs accident claims as top nuisance call

Vince

Of course once those millions of calls stop happening, BT will simply raise line rental pricing to compensate for the loss of call revenue (and everyone else will follow as usual).

The net result will be us paying for those calls with money rather than time.

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US ATM fraud surges despite EMV

Vince

Re: Almost no US ATMs use EMV

Almost every transaction I do on a daily basis is Apple Pay or Android Pay. As more places accept over 30 quid or so, the few I don't use it with will evaporate.

I don't even take my card with me most of the time anymore. I also used contactless for everything I could until Apple Pay and Android Pay rocked up.

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'Windows 10 destroyed our data!' Microsoft hauled into US court

Vince

Of course that there were some pretty slippery tactics used by Microsoft to hoodwink people into agreeing to these upgrades has been overlooked by the party that provided the boilerplate statement.

That it intentionally broke Office 2007 installations (which incidentally install just fine on 2007 for almost all purposes) and thus left people worse off in a productivity sense is irrelevant.

That the advertised ability to rollback didn't and doesn't always work, and sometimes it breaks in such a way you can't boot the PC during install, after install or somewhere inbetween is not relevant either.

Sure people should have backups and such, but Windows 10 has caused a lot of misery for a lot of people, and we still have to deal with various problems it has every day - the forced updates break software left right and centre in my experience.

Still, it was "free"

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New iPad revealed. Big price cut is main feature

Vince

Re: Same Old Tricks?

The difference in the cellular one is the price and weight. It doesn't come with some wonderful other benefit.

The difference between 32GB and 128GB on the iPhone SE is £100, but is otherwise identical. No other benefit.

This is the Apple model. It works because people do keep buying the stuff they peddle.

Heck, the "new" iPad is indeed based on the iPad Air, not iPad Air 2 design, has the A9 - not the A9X or the A10 Fusion, and is generally new-but-old. It doesn't have the laminated display either. I guess it's an "upgrade" if your iPad is really old, but I imagine if it is you either don't want a new one or find it still good enough (we still see people using the original iPad despite being really outdated), so I'm not sure who this is designed to appeal to. £70 odd cheaper than the now removed iPad Air 2, seems fair given there's nothing in it that's current generation.

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Vodafone gets less flexible on flexible working Ts&Cs for own staff

Vince

Re: Vodafone app privacy

Yep I noticed this too.

Moaned at them on twitter, got the usual boilerplate stuff and a suggestion I should just accept it, and finally one suggesting I just use the web site instead.

Fortunately I only updated the app on one device, the rest still have access without this issue. Poor show Vodafone.

1
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Don't worry, slowpoke Microsoft, we patched Windows bug for you, brags security biz

Vince

"any vendor needs to test patches for vulnerabilities such as this thoroughly. Microsoft, for all their faults, actually do"

You must look after different stuff to me then because increasingly Microsoft software fails in really common use cases with patches that blatantly can't have been well tested. There was a time I did believe that and it did seem to largely be the case, but not for a long time.

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Plusnet? More like Plus-naught: Mobile data on the fritz for days for some unlucky punters

Vince

I'll give Plusmet some credit. They're consistently terrible at support.

They are at least subjecting customers on the mobile service to the same poor service you get on business and residential broadband.

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Around 1.4 million people have sub-10Mbps speeds - Ofcom

Vince

Re: 256k on a good day

256k - luxury!

I know of someone with a 160kbps ADSL connection. Naturally that's proving to be amazing as you might expect.

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Vince

Quite a few.

Personally I also think the situation where Virgin Media is the only choice apart from a 1 meg connection or whatever is also no solution. It assumes that Virgin Media has suitable technical services for you - and they don't in all cases - and also means you have no actual choice in realistic terms.

Somehow though, that's also considered OK - being given the "choice" between really slow and practical unusable broadband or er, virgin (although there isn't always a distinction between the former and latter...) is not much of a choice.

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Everything at Apple Watch is awesome, insists Tim Cook

Vince

Illusions of popularity?

Of course if you don't produce many, they can look really popular when there is a long wait time for them - it COULD be that they're selling like hotcakes, but I suspect (based on real world observation) that they're absolutely not.

Our local Apple Store has the watches in the middle of the place and it's notable that there are crowds constantly around the MacBooks and the iPhone, a bit less attention to the iPad and absolutely nobody near the watch - I walk past our Apple Store regularly and can't recall seeing anyone there at any point, and I suspect others will see the same.

It isn't a mass market device and I am not convinced it will be.

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Firmware freakout sends Epson Wi-Fi printers into reboot loop

Vince

What have your examples got to do with Wi-Fi that a good old Ethernet cable doesn't do just as well?

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Vince

Re: Alternative Solution

I'm amazed you've owned an Epson printer long enough to notice any of the other issues. In my experience they suck pretty much from new.

Like the one we have - 15 months old, has done 100 pages, still on start cartridges - not dried up. Keeps throwing random errors.

Of the 100 pages, about 30-40 of those have been diagnostic pages with Epson support.

The result? Ah it's out of warranty, so you will need to pay more than the printer new to repair it, or buy another printer.

Sure, because about 70 pages from new is totally reasonable.

Never Buy Epson

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Brit telco EE's ads banned for 'misleading' 4G speed claims

Vince

Re: Pretty good

Sure, it's also £75 a month which is a reasonable whack - obviously for your needs that might be fine and you might fancy that price but it is quite the premium for basic broadband services.

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Amazon's Netflix-gnasher to hit top gear In December

Vince

Re: Wheels within wheels.

Yeah, I imagine people will as I know many people with at least 3 subscriptions to services that partially overlap. Amazon offers much better value for money than the others though given the money gets you multiple services.

Netflix around £7 a month gets you video... and er... well that's it.

Amazon around £6.50 (paid annually) gets you video, audio, fast shipping on real items, discounted nappies (obviously only of use if you're a parent), audiobooks and a whole host of other stuff for similar money.

Meanwhile, in our house it's Netflix that's under threat of cancellation, not Amazon or Sky - Netflix has been in the house so long we've pretty much done with watching it now - if it was worth watching, we watched it. If it wasn't, we probably also watched it too. Amazon is constantly adding value and new things. Hell I had it before anything other than shipping existed.

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KCL staff offered emotional support, clergy chat to help get over data loss

Vince

Always back up your data!... more than once.

Sure, we can do the "my backup is better than yours..."

So let's start... at home..

Servers are Replicated to Secondary Servers offsite - with hourly snapshots - handy for some basic recovery stuff.

Servers are backed up locally to Hard Discs (in an array or 3, every 15 minutes)

All data (documents, music files, photos, that kind of stuff) backed up to 2 different off-site services (one I control, one I don't directly control) - real time as it happens

Daily Image sync/updates and backups to another offsite location.

And yes that's at home. Because I'm paranoid. So multiple places, types and shapes of backup imaging and recovery options.

I don't want to be THAT guy at work who preaches about backups to everyone else - staff, customers and so on, and then be the one who has to admit they lost stuff. It also serves as a handy way to check how good or bad this stuff is in reality.

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Russia shoves antitrust probe into Microsoft after Kaspersky gripes about Windows 10

Vince

Re: Given how stable Windows 10 1607 AU is of late...

Which is precisely why I am not using Windows 10. Constantly shifting goalposts when it doesn't help you get things done is not what I need.

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What went wrong at Tesco Bank?

Vince

Re: Santander must also not be hashing passwords

Just a shame that they're so lax on the phone. Having had them transfer several thousand pound between my accounts without any security info at all on the phone, and having had them add extra security of which the extra has never in 10 years been asked for, if you were going to do something to them, you'd just phone.

But the rest is true, they use 3 inputs from me plus a visual validation of picture and phrase I set online (edit: although it appears this isn't always the case depending on account type and vintage)

0
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New MacBook Pro beckons fanbois to become strip pokers

Vince

Re: Interesting idea..

I'd second that - HP Elitebook, HP Probook both solid, but the Pavilion range is unreliable and regularly see those coming in for repairs/replacement.

0
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KCL out(r)age continues: Two weeks TITSUP, two weeks to go

Vince

Re: On the bright side...

Nah, my experience is that people don't learn lessons and just assume lightning will never strike twice.

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Microsoft goes back to the drawing board – literally, with 28" tablet and hockey puck knob

Vince

Mixed feelings here.

(a) The hardware looks great, really nice and puts the iMac on the back foot as the "standard" of integrated machine design. It's subjective yes, but I prefer the consistently thin than really thin at edges and really thick in the middle of imac.

(b) Windows 10... I really don't like 10, and if that device had 8.1 available, I'd be interested but obviously that'll never happen.

(c) Price - it's too expensive. You can't compare to the iMac as iMac has sod all of the hardware capability - eg touch, pen, the actually-makes-sense-for-some-uses dial, plus the iMac has older processor/memory/storage tech IIRC - when they announced it it sounded like $3000 got you i7, 32GB RAM, 2TB storage - at that price, great deal, really good. But actually it's more like $4200 - and you still have to pay for the dial (unless you pre-order right now).

(d) Graphics - the choice of graphics is a bad one - it's not a current/new variant so sadly that reduces the meaningful lifespan on a device of this type more than any other - real shame.

...but sadly Windows 10 really smacks (for my purposes/interests, I realise not everyone agrees) and pushed me to Apple for the first time in years. So far, can't say I'm upset or wanting to come back to Windows.

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Vince

Re: Load of bollocks

You won't officially find that supported. As of Sierra Bootcamp only supports Windows 10. Works if you already had older, but not supported new.

It *can* be done, sort of.

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It's time for Microsoft to revisit dated defaults

Vince

Re: Urgent replication flag

Are you also incapable of scheduling a batch file, VBS script or Powershell then to automate it?

It might be easier in a GUI for you, but it's really not even the smallest issue to anyone with a clue.

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Vince

Re: Urgent replication flag

Yeah password changes and many other things are sent immediately and do not rely on the schedule. This has been the case for quite some time, as are account disable changes and so on.

There are ways to force an immediate replication if you need it, has been as long as I can remember, and there are many other inaccuracies (as usual) with your post.

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Vince

Re: Proper Windows installs

If Windows is still taking 20-40 minutes to install, your hardware choice is terrible. Get better hardware and it installs in no time.

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Microsoft: We're hiking UK cloud prices 22%. Stop whining – it's the Brexit

Vince

This change has sod all to do with the pound and everything to do with profiteering. Again.

I can assume pricing won't fall once the £ > $ value heads back to a better rate...

Of course not.

0
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The UK's 'Universal Credit mega cockup was the coalition's NPfIT' - Margaret Hodge

Vince

re: BT

Let's not forget re the BT part that they also benefit from this many stage progression to real fibre.

Copper to Hybrid Coppier Fibre ... watch the cash roll in

Upgrades to even faster hybrid copper fibre.... more cash to do that

<any other interim schemes repeat>

Actual Fibre.... and more cash again

Profit!

4
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Samsung halts production of Galaxy Note 7

Vince

Re: A lesson to be learnt

I think the Note brand is completely ruined. I think that might be the end for it.

0
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T-Mobile and AT&T halt all Galaxy Note 7 sales

Vince

Re: Haven't Samsung suspended production?

Meanwhile Samsung's issues are getting all the press and Apple are laughing because nobody it talking about the increasing cases and class action cases being launched against Apple for defective iPhone 6 series devices, and various other Apple problems.

Must be good to be in Apple PR right now - you don't even have to try. Great work Samsung.

3
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Google may just have silently snuffed the tablet computer

Vince

Re: SD card storage and Android

"Probably the fact that Google, in their infinite wisdom, have decreed that being able to save to a device's external SD card (and thereby do useful work on it) is somehow a "security risk".

...the same google that doesn't have good security for android and still allows any old person to install any old crap on the Google Play Store. Thanks for helping us with that SD card risk though folks!

1
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Vince

Re: @RIBrsiq "I remember a time when tablets were supposed to kill the PC"

Trouble is that Google aren't going great guns with software - Android is a total mess, so them dabbling in hardware doesn't feel like it will end well.

The only people who did a good job of hardware/software combinations were Blackberry (pretty much extinct because they took too long to get BB10 out and by then the ship had sailed on apps) and Apple (who are doing a better job on quality of hardware than specification/features now) and the software is often questionable - lack of choice, option, control etc, but have the app support in spades.

Google makes a big deal about the Google Play Store being required as part of the certification process, yet can't be arsed to have the app store vetted for quality and malware-free content. Morons.

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Apple to automatically cram macOS Sierra into Macs – 'cos that worked well for Windows 10

Vince

Good to see at the end of the article you clarified that in fact this is nothing like Microsoft, because the user gets a choice.

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