Friday, January 29, 2010
Ok so this thing is more in the news than Obama is. To get a full perspective of this phenomenon known as ipad, first view this:
That sets the tone for the likely rub which will occur from the naming of the new apple tablet. Next view the range of humor which is possible:
Now you see what I am talking about. This thing is going to be a laughingstock right? Maybe, maybe not. Perhaps in the new era of branding, Apple is trying to hook you in by paralleling the product next to the potential parodies possible. Perhaps this is genius. Perhaps this thing will sell 4 million units before 4th quarter.
Many techno bloggers have panned the device for a variety of reasons which mostly center around missing features, lack of Verizon, lack of multithreaded apps, you know the drill.
What a bunch of complainers. This thing is going to smoke the Kindle Deluxe out of the water. It is only $10 more than the KinDLX. That alone should give this product legs.
But for those who really are interested in the future of the product, I have it on good authority that the next gen will have the capacity to run multiple apps at the same time. I believe it will be called the ipad 2. It is pictured here:
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Well the controversy starts. After the marketing event of the year so far, the release of the Apple iPad, there follows a potential conflict with the Fujitsu "iPAD" which has been in existence since 2002.
The fujitsu version is an interesting retail store, warehouse device which allows a user to scan barcodes while processing orders. The device offers a mag card scanner, bar code reader, bluetooth, 802.11 b/g wireless and VoIP. The OS is Windows CE and price is over $2000.
This makes the $500 to $830 price point of the Apple ipad a relative bargain right? Thus, I would say that Apple is going to have an easy go of selling these against the Fujitsu iPAD. Well that is if people would want to replace their inventory management tool with a consumer tool which offers ebook reading and mild computing power.
That makes the trademark infringement case between Appl and Fujitsu less tangible but an interesting fight.
Both devices by the way, do not have Adobe Flash plugin..Adobe says it is Apple's fault.
The New iPad from Apple - news coming - you can't buy it yet anyways. For now read here:
Here is the Apple spiel:
More opinions later...
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Is this the next version of the Nexus One??
Ok, I know I was saying that the Nexus One is green lighted and gSpin approved but only a week later, news of the Nexus Two? Yes indeed, it would appear that the development motion is ongoing. The new Nex 2 has a form factor like the Droid, and has been tagged as having the next gen Snapdragon processor, a 1.5 Ghz. Too tempting I know, and a delight for the text input addicts. Specs are a guess right now, so it may not have the new processor but for sure it would appear the keyboard is there..
Friday, January 15, 2010
Look at the sweet Fender version of the T mobile My Touch..
I think the fact that the scientists/new age hackers have beaten the GSM voice and now the data encryption is a parallel with how people choose Macs over PC's.
The groundwork: Israeli researchers report that the technology which encrypts the GSM (the cellular technology which is used globally and by AT&T and T Mobile in the US) has been hacked and it is theoretically possible for eavesdropping on Cell voice calls on GSM networks to be perpetrated. Well this is not good I guess, I know that apart from when I order my Pizza on the phone, I don't have any secure conversations which would warrant concern. But this is a big deal as hackers look for new ways to entertain themselves.
Just today, I see that now GSM 3G data is now at peril because the "geniuses at Israel's Weizmann Inst of Science" have broken the 128 bit algorithm which secures 3G connections in two hours time.
I say that this harkens to the situation which Apple has leveraged, that the hackers will go for the giant not the flea, thus PC's receive more hackery attention than MAC OS. Well I am hoping that these unlocking of GSM will not lead to the unlocking of CDMA for the same reason. The majority of the cell phone carriers globally use GSM vs. CDMA. That plus I use CDMA.
look here: http://tinyurl.com/yapvf7t
Monday, January 11, 2010
Who doesn't know about the iSlate?
One of the big announcements for consumer tech is going to happen on Jan 27th. This is the date that the most notable technology brand reveals its newest product, the new form factor tablet PC with constant connection, its predicted name: iSlate.
Some would say it is a solution for a problem which does not exist. Others would say it is a stroke of genius, another chapter in a story of ongoing product development successes.
I wonder how this product will perform in the marketspace. The pricing is a key to the sales performance or potential for brand stratification. On one hand if the tablet is priced below the floor pricing of Apple's laptop lineup, it would induce new Apple loyalists. However, this kind of product release should create a new niche of computer power into the lineup. The differentiation is large enough from traditional laptops and desktops while providing an entirely new way to obtain web content and maintain information connectivity.
This kind of opportunity is just the kind of product which Apple can hit out of the park.
I think that the price will be north of $1000 and drift toward $600 by the 4th quarter and Holiday 2010.
More notes from Gizmodo
Everyone is talking to me about the Nexus One. People who are not typically tech connected or tech savvy or tech friendly have heard of this and wonder if it is good.
Various sites are now indicating woes with 3G usage with Nex 1 on T-mobile. This is to be expected. The kind of data usage that the typical customer of this product will use is much higher than typical blackberry users. Of the PDA toting population I would say that iPhone users are a high data usage bunch whereas the blackberry toting brood will be using much less data as the prime usage is email text. Of course there are variations of this but clearly TMo will face the same challenges that AT&T faced with iPhone users.
Based upon the comments from the last 48 hours, users with HTC G1's and Nex1's have commented that the G1 will show high signal strength 3G whereas the Nex1 right next to it will show no 3G service, only edge. This leads me to conclude that TMo has now partitioned the network for the new Nex1 which is probably a good strategy unless you are a Nex1 user. This is a parallel to the set of circumstances which iPhone users face on AT&T's network, a strategy which contains the bottlenecking of the network to one segment of the user community.
That said, it is expected that with the new 1700 Mhz spectrum which TMo uses in US being of low contention, there should be resolution to this problem quickly as opposed to the conditions which AT&T us facing with their 3G spectrum. Read one for the original comments...
Well, here is what I think:
For the typical phone users - mostly talking, small amount of SmS, hardly ever use the camera, etc. score: -5 (you don't need to carry a phone this big if all you do is talk on your phone)
For the average cell phone user - voice calls, SMS savvy, light web browsing, camera user. Score: 5 (you probably don't need a phone with all these features)
For the tech lover - voice calls, SMS savvy, Email accounts, moderate to heavy web browsing, facebook photo uploading, installing applications or iphone users: Score: 60
That's right, if you are a feature user, the HTC Nexus One is a great choice. I can't score higher (max is 100) because the T-Mobile 3G is not certain with this device. Currently there are complaints from users regarding the availability of "3G" service with annoying switching between edge/3G causing slow data connections.
This said, I am sure that T-Mo will fix this problem, HTC is a very good Smartphone manufacturer so resources for correction will be good and finally, Google will want this product to function with strength.
Main issue: Highly popular network devices which use a lot of bandwidth will cause challenges to the carrier. Kind of like the issues the iPhone has caused for AT&T in population dense NYC and SF. You guys/gals in MPLS don't have issues with connectivity with your iphones right?
Sunday, January 10, 2010
Winter has been a treat this year. I have taken to the roads to ride for commuting and errands and it has been quite challenging at times. With temps well below 20, road chemicals have not been effective to clear ice off the streets. The greenway and other bike only trails have been nice without the exhaust of cars to glaze layer on layer of ice on the roads.
Still, a cold and slippery ride is better than sitting inside right?
*credit for photo to Freewheel Midtown Bike Center
well it was time to try out Android. The Pre was a good tool for the past 6 months and it was highly usable. My customizations included installing homebrew (rooting) and adding a couple of the free apps.
As for the Hero - I love the larger screen. The battery is larger, than the Pre so it lives longer between charges. I recently disconnected from my exchange server account and it would appear that this alone has improved battery life greatly.
The sense UI makes this OS work well. The flip clock on the home screen is a welcome addition, nothing clearer than this. Having 5 home screens to position shortcuts and widgets is a nice touch.
The visual voice mail feature is nice as well. Makes one of the most archaic parts of cell phone use disappear. Just go into voice mail and all the voice mails appear on screen with the caller identified so you can listen to the voice mails in any order you want. Not a surprise for iPhone users but a nice addition compared to the other phones without this feature.
On a disappointing note, the capacitive screen does not have multitouch features natively enabled. This is rectified in websurfing by using Dolphin browser instead of the android browser. Just like the Motorola Droid and the HTC Nexus One - no multitouch. The Dolphin browser solution in addition to adding multitouch pinch to zoom adds tabbed browsing which is very handy.
The touchscreen keyboard is predictable. It took a bit for me to get used to typing without the buttons but the haptic feedback helps a bit. The word completion is pretty good, and helps on probably 80%+ of the time when typos are made. This is much better than other word completion systems I have used.
As for the applications management, coming from the Pre it is a weird thing to not be able to easily close apps. With the "card" interface of webOS on the Pre, it is very clear what you have running and closing applications is very easy to understand. Just swipe the card of the app that is up and the application is closed. No need for a task manager. With Android though, there is not an equivalent indication of the apps that are running.
Trust linux....well the advice from others who are Linux gurus is that it is not necessary to use a task manager, just close the apps you do not need, leaving the OS to manage RAM and keep the device running well. So far, I have not felt that it is that critical to manage the tasks as I have not had any lockup although there have been moments of slowness when I keep the NFL app up while the AFC playoff game is on right now. Closing the NFL app brings all the speed back.
Quality of the Radio - The voice quality of the Hero on calls is great. No problems there. While using an Aliph Jawbone bluetooth headset, no problems or lag on calls or hang up. While using a Jabra 700 bluetooth speakerphone, great audio with again no lag so that bluetooth stack seems very good.
Compared to the Pre, I would say voice calls are better with the Hero. Now, on to the data service. For some reason, the Pre just does not seem to run at full speed on the 3g service with sprint. With the speed test on both the Pre and the Hero here is what I observed:
Pre 1 Mb download: 307Kbps
Hero 1 Mb download: 1,162 Kbps
Some of this may be due to the PRL file for both - the Android PRL is apparently 60658 whereas the Pre's webOS PRL is currently at 60657. This should not cause such such a difference so it is likely that the radio in the HTC Hero is better.
Finally, the entire idea of using Gmail and the google apps is fantastic with both of these devices. With Google calendar, and contacts, the data set is not fully downloaded into the phone so that reliability of this data is high since this data is stored in the cloud. There is a slight advantage to webOS right now because the Synergy feature which ties the access of contacts into one interface is really a marvel. The simplification which this offers makes using a smartphone easy for everyone.
The Android implementation of contacts and the methods of connection are not horrible but not as seamless as it is with webOS. Likely there will be improvements to Android to enhance this simplicity.
I did a previous evaluation of these two phones and felt that the Pre was better back in October when the Hero first was released. Now after using the Hero for a week, I would say that both have advantages, but I am more impressed with the developments which are occurring with Android and the likelyhood that it will continue to improve with the amount of different devices from various manufacturers. This should in time create a large environment of devices deployed which will offer software developers a bigger target to sell into than the webOS base of customers.
This may change when the Pre and Pixi are released on Verizon and AT&T this year but the momentum of the Hero worldwide (was more in demand globally than the iphone) as well as the success of the Motorola Droid define a large amount of phones in use. Additional devices from Samsung, LG, Dell and others shows more potential growth.