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Android Market Share Hit’s 40% – comScore

Aug 8th, CIO Insight -

Google’s Android platform has topped 40 percent market share in June up from 38 percent in May, said comScore. Apple’s iOS remained No. 2 with 26.6 percent share.Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android operating system may be facing lawsuits on multiple fronts, but it’s still the top draw in the U.S., according to comScore.

 

The research firm estimates that 78.5 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones during the three months ended in June 2011, up 8 percent from the preceding three-month period. Thanks to its ubiquity across multiple carriers and hundreds of handsets, Android represented 40 percent of over 30,000 mobile phone users surveyed by the researcher in June, an uptick from 38 percent through May.

In second place, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) iOS maintained its 26.6 percent from comScore’s last report. The report comes days after Canalys put Android at 48 percent market share worldwide, with Apple iOS commanding 19 percent around the globe. The Android and iPhone will soon see another chapter in their always-interesting war when Samsung launches its Galaxy S II handsets with Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZW), AT amp;T (NYSE:T), and Sprint (NYSE:S) this summer. Samsung already sold more than 5 million of these new phones in less than 90 days. Apple is expected to follow in September or October with the iPhone 5, featuring a speedier processor, new body design and, of course, iOS 5. Canalys Vice President and Principal Analyst Chris Jones said the iPhone 5 would help Apple fortify its strong position in the second half of 2011. Research in Motion’s (NASDAQ:RIMM) Blackberry platform continued its fall, dropping to 23.4 percent from 24.7 percent in the last period. The phone maker hopes to get a boost later this month when it launches new smartphones based on its Blackberry 7 OS platform. To read the original eWeek article, click here: Android Hits 40% Smartphone Share in U.S.: ComScore

 

Lenovo to sell $600 “K1 Tablet”; runs both Windows and Android

Lenovo, the company spun off from IBM, and maker of the top of the line PC Latptop : Thinkpad announced today, the coming release of the  K1 tablet.

Lenovo’s new tablets run both Google Android and Windows 7, and are being positioned as viable competitors in both the consumer and business spheres.

As consumers and business users advance their use of tablets, Windows has largely been left behind.  The upcoming Windows 8 will be fully tablet optimized, while the current Windows 7 is tablet capable.

Expect more sophisticated animation, swiping, and other advanced touch capabilities.

This unit also sports an 8 hour battery life.

This battery life is critical to business users who need power for a full day.

There are only 2 other Windows Tablets on the market to have an 8 hour battery life in the SUB $1000 price range : Motion CL900, and Fujitsu Stylistic Q550.

Many corporate and government organizations have been slow to adopt tablets, not for cost, but for the the sheer lack of a Windows Option.  IT departments are loathe to add complexity to an already chaotic hardware ecosystem.  The last thing they want is a new O/S to support.

As more tablet manufacturers offer a Windows option, we will see increased business use and tablet sales.

Price points for tablets are about the same for low end laptops.   If the main use of the device to light data entry, browsing, and email, then a tablet is a perfect fit.

 Read More at Eweek

 

Best Windows tablets of 2011

By Jon M Simpson, Logical Design, April 25, 2011

As Steve Ballmer continues to pay for ignoring the great ideas of his rivals in this mobile market explosion, there are a handful of tablet manufacturers that believe in the value of Windows and are continuing to manufacture tablets for the OS – very good ones at that.

In spite of the iPad’s monstrous success, factors such as Apple’s notoriously closed ecosystem and Jobs’ rejection of Flash are allowing the competition to stay hot in pursuit. Add in the still shaky Android OS and the delay of Honeycomb, and Ballmer’s decisions may one day prove forgivable – well okay, let’s not get ahead of ourselves…

Sometime in late 2012 Microsoft is set to finally release an OS specifically for tablets, but in the mean time there are some very impressive Windows 7 tablet offerings this year that cater to everything from the ultra-mobile to the power hungry:

The titan: Asus Eee EP121
With both size (12’) and power (Intel i5 and 4GB ram), this Wacom compatible slate tablet is the workhorse of this years’ class of Windows tablets. It comes with a light-weight wireless keyboard, 2 megapixel web camera, an AFFS display, and the hardware to handle the rigors of the likes of Adobe’s Creative Suite, Netflix and Autocad. In spite of its sleek and sexy design, it is a bit beefy at 2.5lbs and has a meager battery life of 3.5 hours. But this is geared towards real computer work and a small trade off for the size, power and Wacom pen.

The midget: Viliv’s X70
For the ultra-mobile, this beautifully manufactured, 1 pound wonder from Viliv comes with a 7 inch screen, a 5 hour battery life, and features a nearly instant-on capability (less than 5 seconds), 1024 x 600 resolution, 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, 3G HSPA, WiMax, Verizon’s EV-DO, a dual camera and GPS. With 2GB of ram and 32GB drive, this puppy is perfect for content consumption.

A few noteworthy runner-ups are the yet to be released Lenovo IdeaPad, the Motion CL900 and currently unnamed Fujitsu. Among these Lenovo excels, with touch friendly dual viewing panes (one for work and one for play) and its Morgan’s Touch digitized layer and pen. Though release is set for sometime in May, at 499, it should be well worth the wait.

It is hard to predict where all of this is headed and what OS will dominate the tablet market of the future. But one thing we can be sure of, with offerings such as these emerging at a feverish pace, there is already a very clear winner – the consumer.

 

Real Life Terminator : Predator – A Tracking Software that Learns

Remember the erie red view of the Terminator eye? It scanned its view and and found the object of interest, registering it and indexing it for use later. This view of the future is less fiction than reality. Thanks to a unique algorithm developed by Czech PHD student, Zdenek Kalal email: [email protected] .

In this video the system tracks his eye, on and off the screen, and can learn to view and track objects from multiple angles, see the Panda bear later in the video for a fascinating demonstration of technology.

 

Flash/HTML5 wars: News from the front

By Jon M Simpson, Logical Design, January 10, 2011.

When Steve Jobs banned the Flash plugin from all Apple devices in April of last year, it sent tsunamis throughout the tech world and left many wondering what the future would be for this darling of web development software and its ubiquitous plugin. The event has had many proclaiming the death of Flash and sparking a flurry of activity to prepare for HTML5, their supposed future king.

But not so fast.

Of course one of HTML5’s biggest appeals is its ability to bring applications directly into the browser,  making it much easier to design web applications. And with the exponential explosion of mobile apps, developers can utilize almost the same exact code for every platform (iPhone, Android tablet, desktop, laptop, etc), thereby drastically reducing the time and effort it requires to create native apps in this feverishly crowded mobile OS market.

But even though Canvas (HTML5′s up-and-coming Flash-like tool) seems to be gaining a lot of attention these days for being able to duplicate basic Flash tasks, it still runs into massive road blocks when trying to say, create a connection with a webcam or microphone, or trying to execute a very long list of complex, Flash Action-script-able functions.

Unless Adobe were to shut Flash development down TODAY,  the notoriously slow W3C would take decades to catch up on many important levels.

But certainly this was not just a wake up call for Adobe, for it has pushed the W3C to take HTML5 to new heights, resulting in an uncharacteristically rapid expansion (for the W3C anyway) of codecs compatibility: In January of 2010 only 10 percent of web video was available to playback in HTML5.  By October it was well over 50 percent.

So although these developments are a short term obstacle for Adobe, as it was already suffering from a growing disdain for its plugin’s power hungry and security vulnerable perception, it seems unlikely that the W3C either can or wants HTML5 to supplant the extensive capacities of Flash.

What’s more is that HTML5 is in severe danger of being far more vulnerable in the long run,  security-wise than Flash is.

Sorry Steve. But most of us developers already knew your motives were disingenuous anyway.

As HTML5 really begins to take off, the same annoying pop-ups and ads are beginning to appear – but these are worse because they are not readily identifiable within the code and filterable like Flash is with add-ons such as Firefox’s No-Script.

So when it comes to one of Steve Job’s primary excuses for banning Flash, HTML5 is opening  up whole new playgrounds for malicious activity on levels that a plug-in like Flash will never be able to.

What is one of the more interesting developments and one that may prove to be a very real answer to the survivability question of Flash, is the announcement in October that Adobe is developing an add-on tool that is able to convert Flash into HTML5 code. It processes the information and exports everything to HTML5, while simultaneously calling attention to anything that HTML5 is unable to handle and still needs to be addressed, post-translation.

Although this still leaves the Flash plug-in in question and it doesn’t answer the codec challenges everyone from Microsoft to Google and back are having, it does offer Adobe the promise of continued relevancy and indeed, dominance in the application development world. It is a brilliant move by Adobe and a collective sigh of relief can be heard across much of the web development world, knowing that the never-ending innovation at Adobe will probably save Flash from these recent developments.

No release date has been announced but 2011 promises to have many developers scrambling back to the familiarity, ease and unmatched capabilities of the Flash platform. As the W3C continues to fix its codecs compatibility issues, hopefully ongoing surprises across the development world like this one from Adobe, will make web developers and users the real victors in this war.

 

Full version of Google Docs now working on iPad

Engadget 12/10/10

The big G just revamped its mobile device interface of Google Docs to make it closer to the full-fledged experience you get when editing from a proper computer — you know, something that probably has a keyboard, a big display, and a price that didn’t come with any two year agreements. Now that top shelf interface is also available on one of those devices that fits somewhere in-between those two segments: theiPad. Users of Apple’s tablet can opt into the desktop version for big-time editing of spreadsheets and documents and, while Google still recommends using the mobile editor, if you want full power it’s yours.  This is an extra sentence.

sourceGoogle Docs Blog

 

Oracle MySQL 5.5 Release Candidate Gets Nods for Performance

Eweek – 9/21/10

Oracle’s first release candidate for MySQL 5.5 received some solid reviews from analysts at Oracle OpenWorld.

The company pulled the covers off the release candidate at the conference Sept. 19 during its inaugural MySQL Sunday event. The emphasis in the release was on performance and scalability, two areas where analysts said customers will get what they are looking for.

Oracle world

Oracle World

“Although this release was long overdue, it met its objective on delivering performance,” Forrester Research analyst Noel Yuhanna said Monday. “There were many large MySQL applications that were struggling with performance, and some were already looking at alternatives such as PostgreSQL, Microsoft SQL Server and Ingres databases.”

“I would say that at least a third of the MySQL community was awaiting the 5.5 release, so we will definitely see the upgrades happening sooner,” he said.

See full Oracle world line up here

READ MORE

 

Got an iPhone 4? You may need duct tape

By John D. Sutter, CNN

July 13, 2010
(CNN) — Has it really come to this?
The most talked-about phone in the U.S. — Apple’s iPhone 4 — has a design flaw that’s best fixed with a sliver of duct tape, according to Consumer Reports.

“It may not be pretty, but it works,” writes Mike Gikas on that nonprofit consumer group’s electronics blog.
The patch — which sounds like it’d be more appropriate for kitchen plumbing than for a phone that retails for $200 to $300, plus an AT&T contract — is supposed to correct an apparent problem with the iPhone 4′s metal antenna.
In a controlled test, Consumer Reports found that people who hold the iPhone 4 in a way that covers up an antenna connector on the phone’s lower left side will experience poorer reception and possibly dropped calls.
But if you slap a piece of duct tape over that antenna connection, the reception problems go away, the group says.
“When your finger or hand touches a spot on the phone’s lower left side — an easy thing, especially for lefties — the signal can significantly degrade enough to cause you to lose your connection altogether if you’re in an area with a weak signal,” Consumer Reports says.

“Due to this problem, we can’t recommend the iPhone 4.”
Many others are testing the phone, too, and coming up with wacky solutions for the apparent reception problems.
Justin Horn, of the site WhenWillApple.com, suggests iPhone 4 users should wear a type of oven mitt called the “Ove Glove” when they need to make calls. The thick glove prevents dropped calls, he says.
“This test produced the best results with zero signal loss, even trumping the results I got with the bumper earlier!” he writes, referring to the “bumper” iPhone 4 cases Apple sells on its site for $29.
“Another plus, the Ove Glove is half the price of the bumper.”
Apple did not respond to a CNN request for comment on this story.
On July 2, the company posted a public letter about the iPhone 4, in which it said reception problems were perceived, not real, and that a software update would fix the problem. Essentially, Apple said the formula used to calculate signal strength was flawed, so the number of reception-indicating “bars” on its phones did not correspond with actual phone reception.
“Their big drop in bars is because their high bars were never real in the first place,” the Cupertino, California, company said in the post.
Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO, was more blunt in an e-mailed response to a concerned iPhone 4 owner.
“Just avoid holding it in that way,” he wrote.

READ MORE

 

Boston commuter ticketed for using dummy in HOV lane

WHDH.COM July 13, 2010

Dummy

Dummy used in Car

BOSTON — A commuter was ticketed for driving with a mannequin as a fake passenger.

State Police spotted a 23-year-old woman driving with a mannequin on Route I-93 South.

According to police, the woman used the mannequin to get away with driving in the carpool lane in order to avoid traffic.

“It’s bumper to bumper about 10 miles an hour,” said one man.

Police said the giveaway was the mannequin’s arm, because it wasn’t moving at all.

Police are not exactly sure where that driver got the mannequin.

She was given a $35 ticket and the mannequin was placed in police custody.

 

Android 2.2 vs iphone iOS4 web browser speed video

By Richard Lai posted Jul 7th 2010 1:56PM Endgadget

Froyo vs ios4

Froyo vs ios4

A little while back Google boldly claimed that Froyo would have the world’s fastest mobile browser, but the lack of final software back then meant we’d had to tie up our itchy hands untilnow. And boy, it sure looks like it was worth the wait – Ars Technica’s JavaScript benchmarks show that not only is Froyo’s browser almost three times faster than its Éclair counterpart, but it also beats iOS 4′s Safari by at least two-fold. That said, numbers alone don’t always reflect real-life performance — especially with Froyo supporting iPhone’s much-missed Flash — so we went ahead and conducted our own browser speed test. Read on for our videos and results after the jump.

Our test candidates were a 16GB iPhone 4 (with a shameless color mod) and a Nexus One rocking the official OTA 2.2 update and Flash 10.1. Naturally, we cleared out the cache files on both devices prior to each trial. Out of the five desktop-version websites that we tested for load time, three of them — BBC News, gdgt and The Onion — repeatedly produced a tie between the two phones, whereas the iPhone 4 consistently loaded Engadget about two to three seconds faster, and the Nexus One about one to two seconds faster with New York Times. Here’s our video of one of the trials:

Click to watch video

 
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