DigitalOutbox Episode 66

DigitalOutbox Episode 66
In this episode the team discuss Back to the Mac, Google and Apple quarters, Amazon Kindle and those pesky Canadians.

Playback
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Shownotes
1:21 – Google Profits
– http://mashable.com/2010/10/14/google-mobile-display-youtube-business/
– Third quarter revenues jumped 23 percent to $7.3 billion. Net income was up 18 percent to $2.2 billion. On a non-GAAP basis, earnings per share rose slightly faster to $7.64. This blew away the consensus estimate of $6.67 among Wall Street analysts.
– Google ended the quarter with with $33.4 billion in cash and 23,300 employees (300 of those came from acquisitions). Paid clicks were up 16 percent on an annual basis. Cost per click was up 3 percent.
– Non-search revenues for the quarter (which includes Google Apps for Enterprise) were $254 million, up 35 percent for a year ago, but slightly down from $258 million in the second quarter.
– Display advertising: The company’s annualized run rate for display ad revenues is approaching $2.5 billion, according to Rosenberg. Google called it its next billion dollar business, and that it’s already here. Much of Google’s display ad business comes from its $3.1 billion acquisition of DoubleClick.
– YouTube: While Google didn’t reveal specific revenue numbers for YouTube, the company did say it is monetizing 2 billion views per week, up 50% from last year. Recent reports suggest that YouTube is approaching $1 billion per year in revenue.
– Mobile: The annualized run rate for Google’s mobile business is $1 billion this year. That means, if things stay on track, mobile will become yet another billion-dollar business for the search giant. As a note, this is really more about Google’s mobile ad business and less about Android, which is free for companies to use.
8:05 – Plan to store Britons phone and interned data revived
– http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2010/oct/20/internet-phone-data-plan-revived
– The government is to revive a plan to store every email, webpage visit and phone call made in the UK, a move that goes against a pledge made by the Liberal Democrats ahead of the election.
– The interception modernisation programme, proposed under Labour, would require internet service providers to retain data about how people have used the internet, and for phone networks to record details about phone calls, for an unspecified period.
– The government says police and security services would be able to access that data if they could demonstrate it was to prevent a “terror-related” crime.
– The revival of the programme is buried in the strategic defence and security review, which was published yesterday. The review says the programme is required to “maintain capabilities that are vital to the work these agencies do, to protect the public”.
19:45 – Back to the Mac
-Headlines:
– Updates across all iLife products. Free on new Mac’s. Upgrade about $50
– iPhoto upgrade looks very nice
– Facetime available in OSX
– A seperate desktop app for iChat – can now chat phone to Mac – Had serious security flaw which is now fixed
– OSX Lion announced (release next year Summer)
– Desktop App store (will also be avail in Snow Leopard soon) – 90 days
– Controversial
– Many dev’s can’t afford to avoid
– Another goldrush
– Flight Control already announced
– So many limitations
– http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/apples_guidelines_revealed_apps_you_cant_sell_in_the_mac_app_store.php
– Mission Control (icon grid for desktop) – Combines existing expose/spaces/dashboard as well
– Full screen apps
– New Macbook Air(s)
– 13” model updated + new 11” version
– Unibody design – wedge shape.
– SSD drives only.
– 5 / 7 hour battery life (11” / 13”)
– Also mentioned:
– Tweak to Macbook range – updated clock speed.
– Bla bla bla sold frickin gergillions of products.
– So, OSX is getting a fusion of some iOS features.
35:09 – Windows Phone 7
– First impressions appear to be positive start.
– Fun and slick to use.
– Minimal interface
– Some good features
– Gripes being
– App store is too busy (includes music in searches)
– Sometimes minimal interface gets in way of achieving goals
– Early days mean missing key apps.
– Definitely behind the curve – better than early Android and iPhones BUT we’re a long way beyond early versions of these platforms now. How long will the version iterations happen and how advanced will point releases be in catching up?
38:56 – Nokia N8
– First phone to use Symbian 3
– Unfortunately, doesn’t seem up to snuff
– Good enough hardware – responsive and good 12mp camera
– Sounds like operating system is main drawback with difficult to use and understand – clunky
– Is Nokia losing the battle?? Are they still king in the standard handeset market – and just not relevant in Smartphone market now…? (Nokia cutting 1800 jobs)
41:05 – MS Office 365
– Microsoft have officially announced their web based office product as Office 365.
– It’s a subscription based service. For consumers, the base product is $6 per month.
– Enterprise will have options from $2 – $20 per month.
– Distinct push to the cloud in everything MS is announcing at the moment. Also, a subscription based model is also a new step for consumers. Are we ready? How does $6 per month sound?
43:42 – Ray Ozzie Resigns
– Ozzie became an employee of Microsoft in 2005, following its acquisition of Groove Networks. He became the company’s chief software architect in 2006, after Co-founder and Chairman Bill Gates stepped down from the role to spend more of his time on the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation — which he began doing full-time in 2008.
– In October 2009, he founded the FUSE Labs (Future Social Experiences) division within Microsoft to develop more social, web-based products, such as social aggregation tool Spindex. He also been credited with driving many of Microsoft’s software products, such as Microsoft Office, to the cloud.
46:08 – Boxee Box
– Nov 12th in UK
– £200
47:29 – Fable 3
– Fable III will feature a one off redemption game card in each game box to unlock DLC…
– Essentially, you need to buy a new game in order to gain all features of game… In this case, they seem just innocent, non-game changing features and additions.
– However, with EA also releasing game codes that are designed to scupper 2nd hand game sales, are we seeing a worrying trend?
– PS looking forward to it anyway 🙂

Picks
Chris
Kindle 3G

– Purchased on the spur of the moment… it’s just about in the price range to do this.
– Only had it a few days – but glad I got it! Plenty of free “classics” available. Prices seem to have settled down and you can get some good deals.
– Button only navigation feels old fashioned but seems well laid out.
– Has in-built browser, although very clunky, might work ok for simple RSS feed type websites. Does try with more complex websites but essentially won’t offer any compelling browsing experience.
– Allows you to play MP3 files – podcasts/songs if you want.
– Reads books out loud (if publisher licences this) and computer voice is acceptable… but I imagine would detract from anything other than blog reading.
– Possible to import your own PDFs.
– Screen is great. Love the fact that when you turn it off, it displays a picture – and it’s kind of spooky at how much it looks like paper and ink… I’ve become so used to seeing screens with a viewing angle – that when you don’t have one, it feels alien!
– Problem of DRM and lack of EPUB support are biggest downsides.
– Tiny keyboard is not ideal.

DigitalOutbox Episode 61

DigitalOutbox Episode 61
In this episode the team discuss Google Instant, Apple U Turn, iOS 4.1, Boxee Box and Halo. Woot.

Playback
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Shownotes
2:16 – Google Instant
– In past few months have passed over 1 billion users on Google each week
– It takes a user on average around nine seconds to enter a search query into Google. Serving results takes around 300 ms from Google, plus 800 ms total in Network time. Takes around 15 seconds to select a result. A search takes 25 seconds.
– At Google we think we have a faster way. Google Instant Search. And that’s what we’re launching today. Gets search results as you type so search is interactive the whole time you’re typing. Google Instant looks like normal Google search. But as you start typing, you see results — you don’t have to hit enter. You can hit ‘tab’ to complete a word.
– Type w – Glasgow 5 day weather forecast appears, first link is mountain weather forecast, second bbc, third met office – impressive
– We estimate this will help Google users save two to five seconds per query. That adds up across all users. “11 hours saved. Each second.”
– Instant results, Scroll to Search, Predictions.
– Only on google.com web page – browsers, mobile – next few months
– Instead of making first page, now about making first letter!
– End of SEO? Does being on page 2 or lower half of page kill your brand?
– Here’s what this means: no two people will see the same web. Once a single search would do the trick – and everyone saw the same results. That’s what made search engine optimisation work. Now, with this, everyone is going to start tweaking their searches in real-time. The reason this is a game changer is feedback. When you get feedback, you change your behaviours.
9:07 – Apple U Turn
– https://developer.apple.com/appstore/resources/approval/guidelines.html
– http://stadium.weblogsinc.com/engadget/files/app-store-guidelines.pdf
– Short statement from Apple – we are relaxing all restrictions on the development tools used to create iOS apps, as long as the resulting apps do not download any code. This should give developers the flexibility they want, while preserving the security we need.
– In addition, for the first time we are publishing the App Store Review Guidelines to help developers understand how we review submitted apps. We hope it will make us more transparent and help our developers create even more successful apps for the App Store.
– Now, was that so hard? Dev’s crying out for this for a couple of years now
– So Flash could be used to create app’s.
– Why now? Android? Realising they were wrong? Pressure from dev’s and large dev studios? FTC probe?
– Most interesting – the guidelines
– Written by a human, almost common sense text – Steve?
– We have lots of kids downloading lots of apps, and parental controls don’t work unless the parents set them up (many don’t). So know that we’re keeping an eye out for the kids.
– We have over 250,000 apps in the App Store. We don’t need any more Fart apps. If your app doesn’t do something useful or provide some form of lasting entertainment, it may not be accepted.
– If your App looks like it was cobbled together in a few days, or you’re trying to get your first practice App into the store to impress your friends, please brace yourself for rejection. We have lots of serious developers who don’t want their quality Apps to be surrounded by amateur hour.
– We will reject Apps for any content or behavior that we believe is over the line. What line, you ask? Well, as a Supreme Court Justice once said, “I’ll know it when I see it”. And we think that you will also know it when you cross it.
– If your app is rejected, we have a Review Board that you can appeal to. If you run to the press and trash us, it never helps.
– This is a living document, and new apps presenting new questions may result in new rules at any time. Perhaps your app will trigger this.
– Lastly, we love this stuff too, and honor what you do. We’re really trying our best to create the best platform in the world for you to express your talents and make a living too. If it sounds like we’re control freaks, well, maybe it’s because we’re so committed to our users and making sure they have a quality experience with our products. Just like almost all of you are too.
– Adobe – great news for developers – http://blogs.adobe.com/conversations/2010/09/great-news-for-developers.html
– Adobe’s Packager for iPhone – The feature is available for developers to use today in Flash Professional CS5, and we will now resume development work on this feature for future releases.
– This is great news for developers and we’re hearing from our developer community that Packager apps are already being approved for the App Store. We do want to point out that Apple’s restriction on Flash content running in the browser on iOS devices remains in place.
– Another developer that has been affected by the rule change is Google. The search giant’s advertising arm, AdMob, was another part of development that was banned back in the original April rule set, but has now seen those rules relaxed. Writing on the AdMob blog, vice president of product management Omar Hamoui says “We’re pleased that Apple has clarified its terms,” adding: “Users will benefit from more free, or low cost, apps that can now more readily be supported by advertising.”
17:24 – iTunes 10
– Faster
– Cleaner
– Ping
– horrible
– feels old
– invite by e-mail
– no Facebook/twitter integration
– drive sales for Apple?
– Where’s my wireless syncing? iOS 5?
– If I search for artists I want links to listen to their music not their muesli. Should be like Spotify/Lsst.fm
20:44 – iOS 4.1 is Out
– Gamecentre
– HDR photo’s
– bug fixes
– anything else?
– MDM – enterprise feature to manage various aspects of the left to 3rd parties to implement. As consumers we might not care, but as more and more enterprises are not just allowing employees to use their own smartphones, but actively encouraging it as a cost cutting exercise, managing those devices is an IT managers nightmare and this is a welcome addition.
26:43 – Amazon hit back
– Not just apple except
– This is for download, not streaming – same content, same price, one you own, one you stream for a limited time
– Cable/sat providers…your time is up
– available in the uk?
30:47 – Plex comes to LG
– Plex – needs a mac to run
– Potentially expensive
– working with LG Electronics (the second largest TV manufacturer in the world) to integrate the Plex platform into their 2011 lineup of Netcast™ connected TVs and Blu-ray devices. So early next year, when you buy an LG Netcast™ TV or Blu-ray player, you will have Plex functionality built-in. Specifically, it will connect to a cloud version of the Plex platform for online content, and, if you happen to have a Plex Media Server running anywhere in your house (after all, who doesn’t have a computer in their house?), you can access your local and online content, in a rich interface, with full metadata
– This is a BIG deal
– My new Sony comes with iPlayer, 4OD, Youtube, podcasts etc
– But a tv with plex built in is a seriously powerful device
35:27 – Boxee Box
– Pre-order in America
– Out in November (UK too)
– Now with Intel inside, not Nvidia
– $229, not $199 although Amazon selling for $199
– UK Price £199
– http://www.pcpro.co.uk/news/361132/boxee-arrives-in-europe-at-twice-the-price-of-apple-tv
– The UK version of the Boxee Box will include
– free and paid-for TV content from a number of local broadcasters, including the BBC, Channel 4 and ITV.
– V-friendly access to services such as Facebook, Flickr and YouTube.
– Intel Atom CE4100 processor]
– 802.11n wireless and Ethernet connections
– HDMI port to deliver Full HD video
– 2 USB ports
– SD card slot
– offers support for Flash, MP3 and Divx formats
– Full Qwerty remote control
43:52 – Twitter for iPad
– Twitter for iPad takes advantage of the iPad’s fluid touch interface, letting you move lots of information around smoothly and quickly – without needing to open and close windows or click buttons.
– Panes: Tapping on a Tweet opens a pane to the right. Depending on the content in that Tweet, you’ll see a video or photo, or maybe a news story, or perhaps another Tweet. You can continue tapping on Tweets, opening new panes, and getting new content as long as you’d like to.
– Media: When you tap a video link or open a web page with an embedded video, you can play that video inline. And, let’s be honest, video is great but sometimes it can take some time to load. The panes in Twitter for iPad let you look through your timeline while a video is loading, and then you can just swipe back to the video when it’s ready to play. You can also pinch on a video to watch it fullscreen.
– Gestures: You can pinch on a Tweet to quickly view details about the author and to take actions on a Tweet, such as reply or retweet. Put two fingers together and pull down on a Tweet to peek at the replies, showing the entire conversation leading to that Tweet.
– Bold and unexpected – eats the other twitter clients
– Wheres Tweetie 2 for the Mac! Hibari is nice, but tweetie still feels better but missing new functionality of twitter – http://hibariapp.com/
44:54 – Samsung Galaxy Tablet
– First true iPad competitor
– the GT-P1000 model has a 7-inch TFT-LCD WSVGA screen (with 1024 x 600 pixels), and is powered by a Cortex A8 1.0GHz processor and a PowerVR SGX540 GPU—the same one used in their Galaxy S phone-and runs with 512MB of RAM.
– As expected, the back-facing camera is a 3MP affair with auto-focus and an LED flash, and the forward-facing one (for video conferencing) has a 1.3MP sensor.
– Two storage capacities are on offer, either 16GB or 32GB, with both models allowing for a further 32GB memory expansion via the card slot.
– Wi-Fi 802.11n and Bluetooth 3.0, and 3G support (Vodafone has been signed up from the get-go, Three from October but unsure if right away)
– As we saw in the leaked video last week, there’s a 30-pin connector port, similar to what Apple uses for its gadgets.
– It’ll run Android 2.2 (Froyo)
– Rumour – Samsung Galaxy Tab reported to retail at €699 and €799 in Europe – iPads offer double the storage for same price
48:29 – Everything Everywhere
– Orange and T-Mobile to offer customers access to both networks at no extra cost as first benefit of newly merged company Everything Everywhere
– Orange and T-Mobile customers invited to sign-up to get access to both networks to make calls and send texts in more places at no extra cost
– As well as continuing to benefit from their existing network, Orange customers will be able to make calls and send texts on the T-Mobile network and T-Mobile customers will be able to do the same using the Orange network
– Customers who sign up for access to both networks will benefit free of charge, with no changes to their existing tariffs or call or text charges. Once registered, should a customer lose signal on their existing network, they will then automatically pick up the signal from the other network where it’s available, meaning that they can make and receive calls and texts in more places than ever before.
50:24 – Bloglines to Close
– Will finally close Oct 1st
– Killed by Google Reader and switch to twitter/facebook – realtime streams
– Sad in some ways but it quickly fell behind Google
– and it was a bit broken
– Off course, many say that RSS is dead etc
– Really – http://googlereader.blogspot.com/2010/09/welcome-and-look-back.html

Picks
Chris
TechSmith Camtasia Studio
– The ultimate screen recording, editing and distribution product.
– Millions of options. Easy to use and control. Plenty of output options. Record your mic, webcam, screen, specific application, video, pictures, title-screens. Stitch them all together on the timeline. £220

Ian
Withings Scale
– Wifi scale
– Expensive
– Can set up to tweet your weight
– Supports up to 5 users
– Love it – very geeky but awesome

Henry
Monkey Island 2
– Awesome game originally on PC now for iOS
– Only £0.69

DigitalOutbox Episode 57

DigitalOutbox Episode 57
In this episode the team discuss the new Kindle and Phones, Phones, Phones.

Playback
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Shownotes
1:17 – Virgin Making Strides
– Adds customer base, increases profits
– Broadband grows – 43% of its broadband subscribers now take packages of 20Mbps or 50Mbps. Broadband growth was five times that experienced last year, with 28,100 net new customers added over the quarter
– Virgin Media has also confirmed plans to launch its 100Mbps broadband service by the end of the year, along with its first set top boxes enabled with technology developed by US DVR giant TiVo.
– will launch its first set top boxes featuring a new television and broadband interactive User Interface (UI) created by American firm TiVo.
– The new UI is designed to seamlessly blend linear TV and on-demand content, along with opening up a range of online functionality, such as recommendations engines and social media functions.
4:49 – Sky Soars
– Almost 10m subscribers
– 400,000 new HD subs
– 30% of its 9.86m customer base now takes Sky+ HD
– 50 HD channels by Christmas
– Average revenue – £508 per person
– £1bn profit in year to June
– The firm added 119,000 broadband customers in the second quarter to bring its total base to 2.6m. The service also reached profitability for the first time since it launched in 2006.
– 3D channel launches on Oct 1st for home users
– Only in pubs, hotels so far
– Films and sport the drivers
– Ryder cup in 3D
– Premiership football
9:51 – New Amazon Kindle
– The new handheld — slated to be released on August 27th — is 21 percent smaller and 15 percent lighter than the previous model
– has a 20 percent faster refresh rate on its E Ink
– graphite and white
– £109 wi-fi only and £149 for 3G version (free 3G from Vodafone)
– Smaller, faster, cheaper
– Jeff Bezos
– For the vast majority of books, adding video and animation is not going to be helpful. It is distracting rather than enhancing. You are not going to improve Hemingway by adding video snippets,” adding later, “there are going to be 100 companies making LCD [screen] tablets… why would we want to be 101? I like building a purpose-built reading device. I think that is where we can make a real contribution.”
– Amazon predicts they will sell more ebooks than paperbacks by end of 2011
– Surpass hard and paperback combined sales shortly after
– I think that looks really nice, especially compared to original version
– http://mashable.com/2010/08/05/kindle-store-uk/
– UK Store now launched
– features more than 400,000 titles (compared to the U.S.’s roughly 650,000)
– customers can purchase e-books in pounds, most of which range from
about £3 to £11
– UK shoppers can now read e-book reviews from fellow countrymen, and see which e-books are selling best locally, rather than across the Atlantic
16:31 – Google Cleared
– The “pay-load” data collected by Google’s Street View cars did not slurp up “meaningful personal details”, the UK’s privacy watchdog concluded today
– the company hadn’t grabbed information that “could be linked to an identifiable person.”
17:43 – Wave Goodbye
– Wave has not seen the user adoption we would have liked.
– We don’t plan to continue developing Wave as a standalone product, but we will maintain the site at least through the end of the year and extend the technology for use in other Google projects.
– Wave has taught us a lot – yep – stop releasing products with no real world use case
20:44 – Jaibreak Me
– http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/browser-based_jailbreak_available_for_almost_all_i.php
– Works for all iphones, iPads, iPod touches
– The jailbreak works by navigating to the site in Apple’s default browser Safari and “sliding to jailbreak.” The process can take as little as a minute to download, declare that it’s added itself to the home screen, and tell you to “Have fun!”
– relies on the exploitation of an unpatched mobile Safari vulnerability
– Jailbreaking will void the warranty on a device, Apple says. However, the action is easy to undo by resetting a device to factory settings (and will be undone by downloading any new version of Apple’s mobile operating system, iOS).
– Some reports of bricks!
– Some users are reporting that this jailbreak interferes with Facetime and Multimedia Messaging on the iPhone 4.
– What’s so different with this jailbreak – sooooo easy
22:39 – iPhone Loses to Android in first half of the year
– With a margin of 27% to 23% of the US market, Google Android platform has shown continues rapid growth and has has edged past the Apple iPhone platform with new subscribers.
– So more people bought android phones in the first 6 months
– Android now sells 200k a day – http://www.engadget.com/2010/08/05/googles-schmidt-boasts-200k-android-devices-sold-daily-waxes-i/
– 21 phones, 4 providers against 1 phone and 1 provider
– Stolen/lost iPhone 4 probably killed iPhone 3GS sales
– Inevitable
– Move along, nothing here to see
24:56 – Blackberry Torch
– Too little, too late
– The Torch seems sluggish, underpowered, and dated from a hardware design standpoint, and BlackBerry 6, despite its new features and polish, still feels woefully behind the curve. To call the Torch the “best BlackBerry ever” wouldn’t be an understatement, but unfortunately for RIM and the faithful, their best isn’t nearly good enough.
– Android = Windows
– iPhone = Mac
– Blackberry/Windows Phone 7 = Corporate – Sun/IBM
29:48 – Every 2 Days We Create As Much Information As We Did Up To 2003
– Every two days now we create as much information as we did from the dawn of civilization up until 2003, according to Schmidt. That’s something like five exabytes of data, he says.
– “The real issue is user-generated content,” Schmidt said. He noted that pictures, instant messages, and tweets all add to this.
– Naturally, all of this information helps Google. But he cautioned that just because companies like his can do all sorts of things with this information, the more pressing question now is if they should. Schmidt noted that while technology is neutral, he doesn’t believe people are ready for what’s coming.
– “I spend most of my time assuming the world is not ready for the technology revolution that will be happening to them soon,” Schmidt said.

Picks
Chris
Astraweb Hosting
– Pay as you go – topsmart $25 = 180Gb – doesn’t expire. ($10 25Gb)
– Perfect.
– You can have monthly sub if you want – but why would you.

Ian
Sabnzbd
– Open source newsreader
– Fast, feature rich
– Great for my mac mini
– Controlled via web client, easily extendable

DigitalOutbox Episode 55

DigitalOutbox Episode 55
In this episode the team discuss Antennagate, Windows Phone 7, Times Paywall and Xbox Kinect.

Playback
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Shownotes
2:04 – Anttenagate
– Featured on Top Gear
– Consumer Reports can’t recommend it
– Worse, Apple deleting numerous threads in support discussions about this
– Not the first time this has happened – horrible way to treat customers
– Rumours that in the face of this, it HAS to be recalled
– http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9179164/Microsoft_exec_mocks_iPhone_4_dubs_it_Apple_s_Vista
– “It looks like the iPhone 4 might be their Vista, and I’m okay with that,” said Kevin Turner, Microsoft’s chief operating officer, in a keynote speech at Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC), which runs through Thursday in Washington, D.C.
– But I don’t know of anyone, anywhere returning the iPhone or saying their call reception is worse
– PR disaster
– 4.0.1 released – new formula for reception bars, taller and fatter now
– http://www.anandtech.com/show/3821/iphone-4-redux-analyzing-apples-ios-41-signal-fix
– Surely a phone works or doesn’t? Do bars matter?
– Press Conference
– http://events.apple.com.edgesuite.net/100716iab73asc/event/index.html
– Started with the iPhone Antenna Song – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VKIcaejkpD4
– Then – Steve Jobs – “You know . . . we’re not perfect.”
– 3 million sold in 3 weeks
– This problem isn’t an iPhone problem – it’s an industry problem
– Apple spent $100 million in testing facility
– Also affects Blackberry, Android, Nokia
– (see http://www.boygeniusreport.com/2010/07/17/can-you-make-your-current-phone-lose-signal-depending-on-how-you-hold-it/)
– ‘Jesus, it must be a lot of users complaining about this’ — So what percentage have called AppleCare? 0.55% Just one half of one percent.”
– “In the early days of the iPhone 3GS return rates were 6%… below the average, we were happy with that… so for the iPhone 4? You think half the people must be returning their phones with what you read online… well it’s 1.7% — less than a third of the 3GS returns.”
– “Even though we think the iPhone 4 is superior to the 3GS antenna… it drops more calls per 100 than the 3GS. We’re being transparent. So how many more does it drop than the 3GS?” “This is hard data… the iPhone 4 drops less than one additional call per 100 than the 3GS. Less than one.”
– The first part is the software update, that fixes the way the bars report and other bugs, that’s out now. Second, people said the bumper fixes everything… ‘why don’t you give everybody a case’? Okay — we’ll give you a free case.”
– “We’re going to send you a free case. We can’t make enough bumpers. No way we can make enough in the quarter. So we’re going to source some cases and give you a choice.” Refund if you’ve already bought one
– “And if you’re not happy, you can bring the phone back. We’ll give you a full refund within 30 days. No restocking fee. We want to make everyone happy, and if we can’t make you happy we’ll give you a full refund.”
– Summary – Yes, it’s a problem but not exclusive to the iPhone however people don’t care as we can’t make enough to sell. We’ve had less returns than our previous bet selling phone which no one complained about. Still, we love our customers and we want to please them – they have been asking for a free bumper so they are going to get one.
OR
– Expert in PR strikes again?
– iPhone 4 perspective: .55% in this case is 165,000 complaints. 1.7% returns is 51,000 phones, +1 per hundred is at least 30K dropped calls.
– Tabloid journalism or the press getting their own back?
– Nothing better than kicking the big guys
– I love how most of the tweets I’m reading that are negative are from non iPhone 4 owners 🙂
– And what of those PR experts that said a recall was the only solution. Looking pretty dumb now.
18:18 – Windows Phone 7 Preview
– No caveats now: Windows Phone 7 is a waste of time and money. It’s a platform that no carrier, device maker, developer, or user should bother with. Microsoft should kill it before it ships and admit that it’s out of the mobile game for good. It is supposed to ship around Christmas 2010, but anyone who gets one will prefer a lump of coal. I really mean that.
– Seeing the UI in action across several tasks, not just in a highly controlled presentation, shows how awkward and unsophisticated it is
– And it’s not just the UI: Under the hood, Windows Phone 7 rests on creakingly old technology that the main competitors have all moved past.
– I was appalled, flummoxed, and stupefied by what I saw and the answers to the questions from the 15 or so developers in the audience. Also, it should be noted that minuscule attendance and the utter lack of passion in the room spoke volumes about Windows Phone 7’s ultimate fate as well. By comparison, about five times as many people attended a session on WebOS.
– The bottom line is this: Windows Phone 7 is a pale imitation of the 2007-era iPhone. It’s as if Microsoft decided in summer 2007 to copy the iPhone and has shut its developers in a bunker ever since, so they don’t realize that several years have passed, that the iPhone has advanced, and that competitors such as Google Android and Palm WebOS have also pushed the needle forward. Microsoft is stuck in 2007, with a smartphone OS whose feature checklist might match that era’s iPhone but whose fit and finish would look like a Pinto next to a Maserati.
– Engadget preview
– http://www.engadget.com/2010/07/19/windows-phone-7-in-depth-preview/
– Much more positive
– Idea’s are half baked which is a big risk for MS
– Gizmodo agree – a good, really good – raw components to build a great smartphone
24:10 – Wired predicts the iPad
– “The next iMac attac promises new lollipop laptops, a more serious series of professional machines, and a wireless handheld dubbed the iPad”
25:27 – Broadband Britain Delayed
– The government has dumped a commitment to deliver universal access to 2Mbit/s broadband by 2012.
– The culture secretary Jeremy Hunt said this morning that the previous government had failed to allocate enough funding to meet the schedule.
26:38 – The Times Paywall
– report from the web analytics firm Experian Hitwise that showed that two thirds of the Times and Sunday Times web traffic had melted away after the paywall went up at the beginning of the month.
– If true, better than expected by Times management who expected 90% drop
– But then this afternoon a site called Beehive City had some figures that may have made the champagne go flat at the Times. According to the site, just 15,000 people have signed up to pay for access to the papers’ two websites – and don’t forget that there was an opening offer of £1 for 30 days.
– Beehive City says more than 150,000 registered during the free trial period but it appears that only a small minority then opted to pay. The Times won’t confirm these figures, so why should we taken any notice of an obscure website?
As an aside…..
– BBC ‘rip off’ in perspective: licence fee = £2.80/wk (for TV, radio, websites). New Times paywall = £2/wk (for two websites).
32:36 – Amazon – EBook Outsells Hardcovers
– Amazon.com customers now purchase more Kindle books than hardcover books—astonishing when you consider that we’ve been selling hardcover books for 15 years, and Kindle books for 33 months.
– Bezos again: “The growth rate of Kindle device unit sales has tripled since we lowered the price from $259 to $189.”
36:33 – Google Remains in China
– China consider Google’s latest tweaks satisfactory and have renewed their operating licence that lets them operate within the largest internet market.
– The “tweak” was basically to stop automatically forwarding from the chinese to the HongKong domain and instead have a manual click through.
– In reality, it doesn’t mean that Chinese citizens will get un-censored internet – the Chinese firewall prevents actual access to sites it doesn’t like but Google at least offers uncensored results.
– In a statement, Google made it clear that although it’s abiding by Chinese law, it’s not censoring.
“The products we are keeping on Google.cn (Music, Translate, Product Search) do not require any censorship by Google,” the company said in a statement. “All other products, like Web search, we are offering from Google.com.hk, and without censorship.”
38:21 – Terrorist Takedown
– Blogetery.com shut down – closing some 70,000 blogs – without notice by it’s ISP following FBI contact related to “links to terrorist material” and an al-Qaeda “hit-list”
– Platform owners/users given no notice.
– “The posted material, in addition to potentially inciting dangerous activities, specifically violated the BurstNet acceptable use policy”
41:26 – Jolicloud
– Web-Based Jolicloud OS Reaches 1.0
– OS is now completely built on HTML 5
– pre-dates Google’s forthcoming “Chrome OS” by well over a year
– ability to run both Web-based applications alongside traditional desktop apps like Skype
– provides access to files previously stored on the computer’s hard drive prior to the Jolicloud upgrade, so you don’t have to worry with backing up your files and photos before making the switch. (Although you should, just to be safe). In the future, Jolicloud plans to offer tools to move these files from the computer’s hard drive to the cloud prior to the upgrade, during the setup process
– 700 apps available in included App Centre
– Thanks to the OS’s Web-based nature, if you choose to install Jolicloud on multiple machines, your settings will remained synchronized between the devices as to how your apps are organized, which you’ve installed, which you’ve deleted, etc.
43:49 – Xbox S and Kinect Prices
– Sell out on launch day
– Retailers struggling to get new stock
– Restrictions form MS or a big hit?
48:03 – Old Spice Goes Viral
– Kinnect + Kinect Adventures = £129.99
– Console (4GB) + Kinect + Kinect Adventures = £249.99
– Pricey! £99.99 should have been the one to aim for…maybe thats the cut down price for next year
– No official date but expect November

Picks
Chris
WinToFlash
– A great little utility to make a bootable USB installation of Windows.
– Needed to re-install Windows XP on a Netbook and this utility turned a horrid process into a breeze. (The alternative online process given required 3 separate utilities, many many steps and was command-line driven…)

Ian
Carcassonne
– Great strategy game
– iPhone only but universal version in development
– Graphics and audio are top notch
Conquist
– Like Risk but better
– iPad only
– A few maps and modes but it plays very well
– Multiplayer but only local – shame

DigitalOutbox Episode 54

DigitalOutbox Episode 54
In this episode the team discuss Broadband news, why Apple are shocked and Facebook panics.

Playback
Listen via iTunes
Listen via M4A
Listen via MP3

Shownotes
1:45 – Government spends thousands on iPhone apps
– NHS Drinks Tracker £10,000
– NHS Quit Smoking £10,000
– Jobcentre Plus £32,775
– DVLA Masterclass £40,000
– A report by the Central Office of Information has revealed that the government spent £94m on website development and running costs and £32m on web staff in 2009 – 2010.
– By the end of May there were over 53,000 downloads of the Jobcentre Plus app, although critics have asked why someone who can afford both an iPhone and the expensive running costs would need a Jobcentre Plus app.
– Surely adapting web content to work on all phones is a better way forward
4:57 – BBC Website Spend
– The BBC spent £199.3m on its BBC Online service in 2009/10, according to its annual report – 12% more than the previous year.
– The outlay is 6% of the £142.50 annual licence fee, or the equivalent of £0.67 per month…
– BBC Online reaches 37% of the population each week and therefore costs 8.9 pence per user hour.
– On a per user user basis, that makes it amongst the most costly of the BBC’s main services, with only BBC Alba costing more.
– More than 18m iPlayer requests per week.
– Monthly mobile users up from 4.4m to 7.8m.
– External suppliers received 26% of BBC Online spend – slightly more than its 25% quota.
– At the same time, BBC Trust endorses the 25% budget reduction
– New BBC News coming soon too
9:55 – Finland Makes Broadband a Legal Right
– From 1 July every Finn will have the right to access to a 1Mbps (megabit per second) broadband connection.
– Finland has vowed to connect everyone to a 100Mbps connection by 2015.
– In the UK the government has promised a minimum connection of at least 2Mbps to all homes by 2012 but has stopped short of enshrining this as a right in law.
– The Finnish deal means that from 1 July all telecommunications companies will be obliged to provide all residents with broadband lines that can run at a minimum 1Mbps speed.
– It is believed up to 96% of the population are already online and that only about 4,000 homes still need connecting to comply with the law. In the UK internet penetration stands at 73%.
– The British government has agreed to provide everyone with a minimum 2Mbps broadband connection by 2012 but it is a commitment rather than a legally binding ruling.
13:14 – Race Online 2012
– UK digital champion Martha Lane Fox wants to get everyone of working age online by 2012
– The Networked Nation Manifesto, published today, also highlights the lack of net access “among the disadvantaged, unemployed and retired”.
– David Cameron backed the campaign, saying that “digital inclusion is essential for a modern dynamic economy”.
– However, the issue of who will pay for it all has yet to be addressed.
– Race Online 2012, is asking for people, who are already online, to sign up to volunteer, donate money or equipment, take part in organising events, or contribute their own ideas about how to get others connected.
17:03 – Prince reckons the Internet is Over
– “The Internet’s completely over,” he said. “I don’t see why I should give my new music to iTunes or anyone else. They won’t pay me an advance for it, and then they get angry when they can’t get it.”
– “The Internet’s like MTV,” the star said to The Mirror’s correspondent. “At one time, MTV was hip, and suddenly it became outdated.”
– “All these computers and digital gadgets are no good. They just fill your head with numbers and that can’t be good for you.”
19:23 – Bye Bye Kin
– Microsoft has made the decision to focus on the Windows Phone 7 launch and will not ship KIN in Europe this fall as planned. Additionally, we are integrating our KIN team with the Windows Phone 7 team, incorporating valuable ideas and technologies from KIN into future Windows Phone releases. We will continue to work with Verizon in the U.S. to sell current KIN phones
– Less than 50 days on sale
– Already half price
– Sell off remaining stock
– Allegedly…..503 sold
– Actually – at least 8000
– Just a different way of saying…
– FAIL
22:53 – Apple Admit Signal Fault
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/10490572.stm
– http://daringfireball.net/2010/07/translation_iphone_4
– To start with, gripping almost any mobile phone in certain ways will reduce its reception by 1 or more bars. This is true of iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, as well as many Droid, Nokia and RIM phones. But some users have reported that iPhone 4 can drop 4 or 5 bars when tightly held in a way which covers the black strip in the lower left corner of the metal band. This is a far bigger drop than normal, and as a result some have accused the iPhone 4 of having a faulty antenna design.
– We have discovered the cause of this dramatic drop in bars, and it is both simple and surprising.
– Upon investigation, we were stunned to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong. Our formula, in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength.
– We have gone back to our labs and retested everything, and the results are the same— the iPhone 4’s wireless performance is the best we have ever shipped. For the vast majority of users who have not been troubled by this issue, this software update will only make your bars more accurate. For those who have had concerns, we apologise for any anxiety we may have caused.
– As a reminder, if you are not fully satisfied, you can return your undamaged iPhone to any Apple Retail Store or the online Apple Store within 30 days of purchase for a full refund.
– So not hardware but software….and software for all iPhones
– So why so many video’s of people stopping bandwidth with their finger if it’s just a display issue?
– Doesn’t add up…
– And was the formula wrong, or did they show more bars to make the iPhone look good?
30:55 – Section 44 Goes Bye Bye
– Police are to be stripped of the power to stop and search anyone for no reason, the Home Secretary has announced.
– Theresa May told the Commons she will immediately limit Section 44 of the Terrorism Act 2000 so members of public can only be stopped if officers “reasonably suspect” they are terrorists. The threshold of suspicion will bring the Act into line with traditional stop and search powers.
– Liberty director Shami Chakrabarti hailed the withdrawal of the power today. “It is a blanket and secretive power that has been used against school kids, journalists, peace protesters and a disproportionate number of young black men,” she said.
– “To our knowledge, it has never helped catch a single terrorist. This is a very important day for personal privacy, protest rights and race equality in Britain.”
– Today’s announcement will be welcomed by photographers, who have battled police for the right to take pictures in public places in recent years. Often officers have used Section 44 to stop and search snappers when they are not suspected of doing anything wrong
32:02 – Google Life in a Day
– a historic cinematic experiment that will attempt to document one day, as seen through the eyes of people around the world.
– On July 24, you have 24 hours to capture a snapshot of your life on camera. You can film the ordinary — a sunrise, the commute to work, a neighborhood soccer match, or the extraordinary — a baby’s first steps, your reaction to the passing of a loved one, or even a marriage.
– Kevin Macdonald, the Oscar-winning director of films such as The Last King of Scotland, Touching the Void and One Day in September, will then edit the most compelling footage into a feature documentary film, to be executive-produced by Ridley Scott, the director behind films like Gladiator, Black Hawk Down, Thelma & Louise, Blade Runner and Robin Hood.
– The film will premiere at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival and if your footage makes it into the final cut, you’ll be credited as a co-director and may be one of 20 contributors selected to attend the premiere.
– Regardless of whether your footage makes it into the final film, your video(s) will live on on the “Life in a Day” channel as a time capsule that will tell future generations what it was like to be alive on July 24, 2010.
35:36 – Google App Inventor for Android
– http://appinventor.googlelabs.com/about/
– what-you-see-is-what-you-get (WYSIWYG) tool for app development on the Android platform
– Instead of having to learn code (in Android’s case, Java), App Inventor is a piece of software that allows you to drag and drop certain elements common to many apps to build a mobile app from scratch.
– Google quote – To use App Inventor, you do not need to be a developer. App Inventor requires NO programming knowledge. This is because instead of writing code, you visually design the way the app looks and use blocks to specify the app’s behavior.
– Plus – takes away barrier of entry
– Minus – could be a Frontpage for Android Apps
– Potentially excellent though
38:49 – Fring vs Skype
– Call Fring to Fring, Skype to Skype
– 3G or wi-fi
– Still amazed Apple haven’t brought out updated iChat to allow Facetime to iChat or vice versa
– It’s also a popular upgrade – http://www.fring.com/blog/?p=2303
– Fring says Skype has apparently blocked fring and threatened legal action against the startup.
– An hour or so ago, Fring reported on its blog that we had blocked their access to Skype. I want to make one thing absolutely clear: this is untrue. Fring was using Skype software in a way it wasn’t designed to be used – and in a way which is in breach of Skype’s API Terms of Use and End User License Agreement. We’ve been talking with Fring for some time to try to resolve this amicably.
– However, over time, Fring’s mis-use of our software was increasingly damaging our brand and reputation with our customers. On Friday, for example, Fring withdrew support for video calls over Skype on iOS 4 without warning, again damaging our brand and disappointing our customers, who have high expectations of the Skype experience.
– We actively encourage developers to build products that work with Skype, acting, of course in accordance with our various API licences. At the same time, Skype will rigorously protect our brand and reputation, and those developers that do not comply with our terms will be subject to legal enforcement.
– In this case, however, there is no truth to Fring’s claims that Skype has blocked it. Fring made the decision to remove Skype functionality on its own.
43:23 – Youtube Mobile Updates
– m.youtube.com
– a more polished UI and better load time
– uses plenty of HTML5 features, including the video tag.
– But most important is the fact that the web app has superior video quality when compared to native applications — namely the iPhone’s — and it will soon feature more content as well
– widely available, with support for nearly any HTML5 compliant mobile browser, including those on the iPhone and Android devices.
– The web app offered a number of advantages, including auto-complete in search and a UI that’s more consistent with the latest version of the YouTube webpage (the iPhone app still uses YouTube’s 5-star rating system, which was abandoned in January in favor of a binary ‘Like’ system). Most important, the video quality of the web application was leaps and bounds ahead of the iPhone app — Doronichev explained that this was because the iPhone app still uses a video streaming format that was developed for Edge, not 3G. Video on the HTML5 app looked much better, and was snappier to boot.
– http://techcrunch.com/2010/07/07/youtube-leanback-tv
– Leanback
– http://www.youtube.com/leanback
– site will immediately start playing videos from a feed of suggestions, based on other videos you’ve liked
– keyboard driven
– Rentals aren’t live for Leanback yet, but the YouTube team says that this is due to a technical issue, not a licensing one, and that it hopes to offer rentals in the next few weeks. And yes, ads will eventually make their way into Leanback as well
46:39 – Facebook Adds Panic Button
– The button, aimed at children and teenagers, will report abuse to the UK Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (Ceop) and Facebook.
– Once installed, the application appears on their homepage to say that “they are in control online”.
– The launch follows months of negotiation between Ceop and Facebook, which initially resisted the idea.
– a Facebook UK representative has contacted us to clarify that Facebook does not perceive this app as a “panic button.” “The app is opt-in, so young people choose to download it/bookmark it to their page in order to use,” she said. A similar button, seen on other sites such as Bebo, is “not opt-in and is simply a reporting link, not teamed with messages of how to stay safe or further info from CEOP,” she said
49:21 – Amazon Does Groceries
Beta for moment
– 22,000 products
– Won’t replace weekly shop for most
– Amazons angle is twofold – better if user buys in bulk
– Amazon Prime – unlimited free one day delivery for annual fee of £49
– Supermarkets typically charge between £4 and £6 but shoppers can choose specific time slots.

Picks
Chris
Xara Photo & Graphic Designer 6 (and designer Pro 6)
– A largely unknown gem of a piece of software. Vector based graphics program. Exceptionally fast rendering engine. Over time they have increased support for photo manipulation and now have a very powerful photo engine.
– £69 for the standard version.
– Pro comes with a £249 pricetag but comes with some pretty impressive web development features. Literally draw your site.
– Free trials as ever if you want to play.
– PC only – although there is an open source project for lunux

Ian
Osmos HD
– Game for iPad
– Ambient and addictive

DigitalOutbox Episode 36

DigitalOutbox Episode 36
In this episode the team discuss the iPad and Tech quarters.

Playback
Listen via iTunes
Listen via M4A
Listen via MP3

Shownotes
1:35 – Apple Reports
– Steve J – “If you annualize our quarterly revenue, it’s surprising that Apple is now a $50+ billion company.”
– Steve J – “The new products we are planning to release this year are very strong, starting this week with a major new product that we’re really excited about.”
– 8.7 million iPhones in the quarter, a 100 percent unit growth over the year-ago quarter — and up 17.6 percent from the previous quarter.
– Meanwhile, Apple sold 3.36 million Macs, which was a 33 percent increase over the year-ago period.
– iPod sales totaled 21 million, which was down 8 percent versus a year ago.
– Overall, the company posted revenue of $15.68 billion and a net profit of $3.38 billion.
– That means revenue was up about $4 billion versus a year ago, while profit was up over $1 billion. Gross margin was 40.9 percent, up from 37.9 percent a year ago.
– Apple also notes that it has gained another $5.8 billion in cash for the quarter, which should push its war chest very close to $40 billion.
2:14 – Microsoft in the Money
– Net income for the period rose to $6.66 billion, or 74 cents a share, from $4.17 billion, or 47 cents a share in the same period last year. Meanwhile, revenue rose 14 percent to $19.02 billion.
– Windows 7 helped – exceptional demand for it
– Analysts had been expecting earnings of 59 cents a share, and $17.9 billion in revenue. audio
2:52 – iPad Discussions
– It’s 0.5-inches thin, weighs just 1.5 pounds. Thinner and lighter than any netbook. 9.7-inch IPS LED display.”
– 1024-by-768
– ad is powered by our own custom silicon. Our own chip. It’s called the A4, and it screams.” 1GHz.
– 16, 32, or 64GB of flash storage. “It’s got the latest in wireless: 802.11n, WiFi, and Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR.”
– All the usual suspects: accelerometer, compass, speaker, mic, dock connector. And it’s got battery
– We’ve been able to achieve 10 hours of battery life.
– Apps run out of the box
– Pixel double – run full screen
– New SDK out today including iPad tools. iPhone 3.2beta – under an nda
– Demos
– NYTimes app looked really nice
– Brushes – very smart
– iBooks
– Looks like a bookshelf – Delicious Library!!!!!!!!
– Delicious Library dev tweeted – first Apple steal all my employees, now they copy my app’s look
– Tap right or left to change the page — or drag the page manually
– Browse TOC, change the font or the font size, all the standard stuff.
– “And that is iBooks.” Big applause. “We use the ePub format, the most popular open book format in the world, and I’m very excited about this.
– We think the iPad is going to make a terrific e-book reader not just for popular books, but for textbooks as well.”
– Deals with HarperCollins, Penguin, Simon & Schuster, Macmillan, Hachette.
– Will this be available in UK?
– Can I read books on
– iWork
– Pages, Keynote, Numbers for iPad – $9.99 each
– Easily connect to projector with small cable
– The iPad syncs over USB with iTunes exactly like an iPhone or iPod touch.
– So when you sync, you sync everything. Photos, music, movies, TV shows, contacts, calendars, bookmarks, apps…”
– Every iPad has the latest and greatest WiFi. But we’re going to have models with 3G built in as well.”
– The first is up to 250MB per month — a fair bit of data, most people will get by on that — for just $14.99.”
– If you feel you need more, we have an unlimited plan for just $29.99.
– Real breakthrough prices. We’ve got a breakthrough deal with AT&T who is providing the service
– We think it’s a phenomenal offering. So what about internationally?
– We hope to have our international deals in the June-July timeframe.
– We think we can do a lot in June, we’ll start on that tomorrow. However all models are unlocked and use GSM micro-SIMS.
– So $499 / – 16gb, 599 / 729- 32gb, and 699 / 829 – 64gb.
– Cheaper than iPhone
– We will be shipping iPads in 60 days.”
– 90 days for 3G
– Dock!
– Keyboard dock
– Case
– So what is iPad?
– Netbook killer?
– Laptop killer?
– iPhone killer?
– http://flyosity.com/ipad/the-ipad-is-for-everyone-but-us.php
– http://joehewitt.com/post/ipad/
– iPad is an incredible opportunity for developers to re-imagine every single category of desktop and web software there is. Seriously, if you’re a developer and you’re not thinking about how your app could work better on the iPad and its descendants, you deserve to get left behind.
– True, iPad 1.0 has a lot of limitations which make it hard to be compared to a laptop today. We’re not there yet, people, but does it really take that much imagination to see how we will get there? Apple clearly wants to increase its investment in iPhone OS and reduce its investment in Mac OS X. At some point in the near future, Apple will adapt iPhone OS to even larger screens, add multi-tasking, and release something like a laptop or iMac with the OS. When it happens, it will make perfect sense, because by then there will be orders of magnitude more iPhone/iPad apps on the App Store than there ever were for Mac OS X and Windows.
– http://stevenf.tumblr.com/post/359224392/i-need-to-talk-to-you-about-computers-ive-been
– http://speirs.org/blog/2010/1/29/future-shock.html
– http://lit-n-lat.blogspot.com/2010/02/ipad-and-mac-development.html
– Okay, I’ll admit it: when I saw that what everybody had expected all along had actually been realised – that the iPad was essentially a large iPod Touch – I was gutted; gutted because of the implications for Scrivener, which currently runs only on the Mac. Perhaps the biggest disappointment and frustration for me as a developer is that, in a way, I feel that Apple’s decision to use the iPhone OS for a tablet that is ostensibly intended as an entry into the netbook niche of the market (rather than saying straight up that it is something completely different to a netbook) is a bit of a two-fingers-up to us indie Mac developers; developers who have been quietly contributing great applications (at least, I like to think Scrivener is a great application…) to the Mac platform, and who have even persuaded users of other platforms to switch (I’ve lost count of the number of users who have e-mailed me to say that they bought a Mac just to use Scrivener – perhaps the biggest compliment of all).
– Adobe comment – “It looks like Apple is continuing to impose restrictions on their devices that limit both content publishers and consumers. Unlike many other ebook readers using the ePub file format, consumers will not be able to access ePub content with Apple’s DRM technology on devices made by other manufacturers. And without Flash support, iPad users will not be able to access the full range of web content, including over 70% of games and 75% of video on the web.” – http://theflashblog.com/?p=1703
– Microsoft comment – “It is a humorous world in how Microsoft is much more open than Apple,” Brandon Watson, the director of product management in the developer platform at Microsoft, told me in an interview yesterday. With Microsoft’s platforms, developers can build whatever they want, and target a broad array of devices using the same skill set, he added. Watson claimed that many developers of applications for the iPhone OS–which the iPad uses–are not making money. Developing applications for the iPhone and iPad is expensive, he said, because iPhone OS uses the Objective-C language rather than Microsoft’s more pervasive .NET platform. And Apple’s control over the platform has alienated some people that make software for its products, he said.
– Jobs town hall : On Google: We did not enter the search business, Jobs said. They entered the phone business. Make no mistake they want to kill the iPhone. We won’t let them, he says. Someone else asks something on a different topic, but there’s no getting Jobs off this rant. I want to go back to that other question first and say one more thing, he says. This don’t be evil mantra: “It’s bullshit.” Audience roars.
– About Adobe: They are lazy, Jobs says. They have all this potential to do interesting things but they just refuse to do it. They don’t do anything with the approaches that Apple is taking, like Carbon. Apple does not support Flash because it is so buggy, he says. Whenever a Mac crashes more often than not it’s because of Flash. No one will be using Flash, he says. The world is moving to HTML5.
22:17 – Amazon Drops Macmillan Books
– Books published by Macmillan mysteriously poofed from Amazon on Thursday 28th….1/6th of its book catalogue
– Not just elctronic books for the Kindle – all Macmillan books from Amazon – paper as well
– The reason, according to the NYT, is that Amazon is punishing the publisher for arguing that the price of Kindle books should go up to $15.
– Then capitulate…….
– http://www.amazon.com/tag/kindle/forum/ref=cm_cd_tfp_ef_tft_tp?_encoding=UTF8&cdForum=Fx1D7SY3BVSESG&cdThread=Tx2MEGQWTNGIMHV&displayType=tagsDetail
– Dear Customers:
– -Macmillan, one of the “big six” publishers, has clearly communicated to us that, regardless of our viewpoint, they are committed to switching to an agency model and charging $12.99 to $14.99 for e-book versions of bestsellers and most hardcover releases.
– We have expressed our strong disagreement and the seriousness of our disagreement by temporarily ceasing the sale of all Macmillan titles. We want you to know that ultimately, however, we will have to capitulate and accept Macmillan’s terms because Macmillan has a monopoly over their own titles, and we will want to offer them to you even at prices we believe are needlessly high for e-books. Amazon customers will at that point decide for themselves whether they believe it’s reasonable to pay $14.99 for a bestselling e-book. We don’t believe that all of the major publishers will take the same route as Macmillan. And we know for sure that many independent presses and self-published authors will see this as an opportunity to provide attractively priced e-books as an alternative.
– Kindle is a business for Amazon, and it is also a mission. We never expected it to be easy!
– Thank you for being a customer.
25:56 – iPhone OS 3.2
– contains rudimentary support for video calling
– hooks to accept and decline a video conference, flip a video feed (which suggests a front-facing camera) and — most importantly — run the video call in either full screen mode or in just a portion of the screen
– supports file downloads and local storage in the browser
– a spell checker with multiple dictionaries and user-added entries
– much richer text support for apps
– the ability to selectively draw to external displays
– cation-aware ads in Maps and possibly other programs that use the Maps API
– file upload ability in Safari
– modifiable cut / copy / paste menu
– prototype support for a “handwriting keyboard.”
27:52 – Google Voice on the iPhone
– Via web and HTML 5, not the app store
– m.google.com/voice
– The new Google Voice mobile web app doesn’t offer a clear way to add contacts through the mobile interface,
– its call history function falls short and there are other things that are funky about it.
– It’s fast, but it’s still just not as fast and responsive as a native mobile app.
– Perhaps that will change with time. It does feel nice, though, and has a very attractive interface.
29:30 – Google Drop IE6 Support
– The web has evolved in the last ten years, from simple text pages to rich, interactive applications including video and voice. Unfortunately, very old browsers cannot run many of these new features effectively.
– Google Docs and Google Sites first affected
– As a result you may find that from March 1 key functionality within these products — as well as new Docs and Sites features — won’t work properly in older browsers.
……..and still the issue rumbles on
– DoH tells NHS to drop IE6
– http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/02/01/doh_ie6/
– In a technology bulletin published by the department’s informatics directorate on 29 January 2010, it advised NHS trusts using Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 on either Windows 2000 or Windows XP to move to version 7 of the browser.
– “We’ve advised NHS trusts to upgrade to IE7 as early as possible,” said a spokesperson
32:14 – Sky Launches 3D TV Channel
– Sky has announced that its UK-first dedicated 3D TV channel will begin rolling out in pubs from April to broadcast live Premier League games in 3D
– The 3D TV service will work with all existing Sky+ HD boxes and will “initially” be available at no extra cost to customers already signed up to the broadcaster’s top TV package and the Sky HD pack, the company told us today.
– You will need a 3D-ready TV, of course. Models from the likes of Sony, Samsung, LG and Panasonic will all be compatible, Sky said.
– As 3D TV models become more “widely available” in the consumer market, Sky+ HD customers will also get access to the channel. By then, Sky 3D will offer a wider range of content, including movies, sport, documentaries, entertainment, and the arts.
– New customer or upgrading to Sky+ – get a Sky HD box by default
– http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/digitaltv/news/a199912/sky-to-provide-hd-boxes-as-standard.html
– The receiver will cost £49 with a £30 installation fee for new customers, or £99 and £60 installation for existing subscribers.
– Box will be free if you subscribe to HD
– Also launching the long-rumoured 1TB box, available for £249, it’ll store around 240 hours of HD content.
– http://www.sky.com/shop/3d/home/
– Test broadcast over weekend – reviews mixed – http://www.reghardware.co.uk/2010/02/01/sky_3d_football/
– Tunnel shots and certain camera angles were great
– Close-ups of players, managers and assembled fans was what made 3D great. But the effect was totally lost while watching the pitch action in a widescreen at-a-distance shot. Players didn’t stand out from one another and I didn’t feel as though free kicks would hit me in the face.
– Kudos to LG: its 3D TV performed flawlessly throughout. Each (good) 3D shot was crisp, clear and immersive. It had an amazing viewing angle, allowing me a good spec from any point in the room.
37:23 – PS3 Hacked
– hacker George Hotz (already known in the iPhone community) has made a strong claim: that he has cracked the PS3
– What will it mean?
– 5% Hardware / 95% software. Still not cracked everything including memory but enough to trick the console into doing what he wants.
38:07 – OnLive Beta Reports
– Negative report last week
– News blackout at the moment so surprising to read this
– Onlive comment – reporter shouldn’t have had access, he was lucky to get it working at all
– other beta testers step forward but don’t want to be named…but jerky, graphics a bit poor. No surprise really

Picks
Ian
LaunchBar
– €24
– Replaced Quick SIlver for me
– Launcher
– Search and control iTunes
– Clip history
– Up to 40 items
– Remembers history after restart
– Clip Merge
– Search spotlight from launchbar
– Can take text and send on to other app’s
– Support custom searches, indexing and actions

Henry
ZooTool
– Visual bookmarking tool
– Free