Posts Tagged ‘month’

Google’s Project Loon Internet Balloon Traverses The Globe In Under A Month

Google’s Project Loon, the effort to bring Internet connectivity to more remote areas using a network of hot air balloons, has racked up an impressive achievement – going around the world in just 22 days. One of the project’s test balloons just managed this, despite estimates from the team that it would take around 33 days for it to make the trek. This particular… Read More

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Microsoft’s OneNote may come to the Mac this month

Microsoft’s OneNote app has been available on mobile, Windows and the web for quite some time, but Mac support for the note-taking software has proven elusive… at least, until now. Both The Verge and ZDNet hear that OneNote will be available for…

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AT&T reduces 2GB Mobile Share Value plans by $15 per month

Following up on the news that its UnCarrier rival will soon raise the cost of its unlimited data plan, AT&T is making some pricing changes of its own — in the completely opposite direction. The base rate for the company’s 2GB Mobile Share Value plan…

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FreedomPop Announces The Privacy Phone, A Fully-Encrypted Smartphone For $10 A Month

Meet the Privacy Phone, a device that FreedomPop brags is the only smartphone and mobile service that allows for encrypted communications. Lovingly nicknamed the “Snowden Phone” by FreedomPop, It can even be purchased with Bitcoin to further protect the owner’s anonymity. Simply put, if you’re in the market for a phone to plan to help run a criminal enterprise or serially… Read More

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Harmony’s $150 Smart Keyboard remote comes to living rooms this month

Logitech is bringing a new entry to the lineup of Harmony remotes centered around its Hub. At a price of $ 150 this Harmony Smart Keyboard will retail for only twenty dollars more than the Harmony Smart Control, but trades in the simple and small…

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Samsung’s latest Chromebooks come wrapped in faux-leather, on sale next month for $320 and up

It’s been over a year since Samsung released a new Chromebook, and since then the competition has been heating up: Dell, HP, Lenovo and Toshiba all sell Chrome OS devices now, as does Acer, which has been at it from day one. Accordingly, Samsung is…

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First Bitcoin ATMs coming to the US this month

Following the successful launch of an ATM in Vancouver last year, Bitcoin ATM maker Robocoin will install similar machines in Seattle and Austin this month. Touted by Robocoin as the first US Bitcoin ATMs, the machines cost around $ 19,000 and differ slightly from regular ATMs thanks to additional security measures like a scanner for a passport or driver’s license.

In addition to the US launch, Robocoin is also planning to bring its machines to Asia in the coming weeks. The company’s Vancouver ATM, operated by local company Bitcoiniacs, processed over $ 900,000 in transactions in its first month, leading some to believe that the company is onto a winning formula. Nestled in a Vancouver cafe, the machine is automated, but is regularly…

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WSJ: An Android-Powered Nokia Phone Clad In Windows Phone Clothing Coming Later This Month

lumia-520-front-tiles-cp

Rumours that primary Windows Phone OEM Nokia has been two-timing Microsoft by keeping an Android phone project on its backburner have been doing the rounds for a while now (aka the rumoured Nokia Normandy device). But yesterday the Wall Street Journal tipped more fuel on this fire, citing “people familiar with the matter” confirming that Nokia will unveil an Android powered device at the Mobile World Congress tradeshow in Barcelona later this month.

Now there’s plenty of WTF here. Not least because Nokia is about to hand over its mobile making division to Windows Phone maker Microsoft in exchange for a substantial pile of cash (€5.44 billion/$ 7.2 billion). So why would Microsoft, which has its own mobile platform, sanction its soon to be mobile making division to build an Android-powered device?

On the surface, it sounds like madness. And yet, as others have previously speculated, there is potentially method to this madness — being as Windows Phone has failed to challenge Android’s reach at the lower end of the smartphone market.

The bottom-of-the-range $ 180 Lumia 520 (pictured at the top of this post), which was announced at last year’s MWC conference and has sold relatively well for a Windows Phone, is still a ways more pricey than the least expensive Droids (sub-$ 50 Android handsets are available in emerging markets).

Ergo, switching to Android for budget devices would be one way for Microsoft to slice itself a larger portion of a very large (and growing) chunk of the smartphone pie.

If the best traction for Windows Phone has been at the lower end price-point, then pushing that lower still could be a winning combination — even if the resulting phones won’t technically be Windows Phones. Yet they will look and taste like Windows Phones, spreading the flavour of Microsoft’s mobile OS further than it’s thus far been able to go.

The Android powered Nokia device the WSJ’s sources discuss would come preloaded with Microsoft (and Nokia) services, including a Nokia Android app store, rather than Google software and Google’s Play store — effectively making it a Trojan horse pushed inside the Android fortress to ‘on-ramp’ first time smartphone users.

Or a plucky landing on the shores of occupied territory, if you will.

The device would also not resemble vanilla Android in terms of its UI, but would rather be a fork of Android — just as Amazon has forked Android for its Kindle Fire tablets and to further its own ends, not Google’s — with Nokiasoft apparently dressing the interface to make it look like Windows Phone.

Doing that would mean the budget Droid could acclimatize first time smartphone users to a Windows Phone world — i.e. in the hopes they will upgrade to a full-fat Windows Phone Lumia smartphone in the fullness of time.

According to the WSJ, Nokia engineers have been developing the Android device before agreeing to sell its mobile making division to Microsoft last fall. But up to now it hasn’t been clear whether Nokia planned to move ahead with the project or not.

The newspaper’s sources confirm the handset will be unveiled later this month — so presumably the project has been okayed by Microsoft’s new CEO Satya Nadella.

Nokia is holding a press conference at MWC, where TC will be on hand to cover the news. (Albeit, Nokia’s understated invite for this event isn’t giving away any Droid-flavoured hints:)

Nokia MWC press invite

It’s not clear whether the Normandy Android landing is a stop-gap strategy while Microsoft retools Windows Phone for even lower prices smartphones. But the WSJ says Microsoft will be refocusing WP attention on flagship smartphones, to better compete at the higher end. (Yeah, good luck with that…)

At its earning call last month, Nokia — the only substantial Windows Phone OEM (controlling 90% of the market according to AdDuplex) — revealed it sold a total of just 30 million Lumia devices during in the whole of 2013.

Compare that to Android’s vast sprawl: Google announced 900M active Android activations in May last year. And cumulative active Android activations are likely to break the billion mark this year as the platform continues to expand to new device types to fuel further growth.

With comparative numbers like those it’s not hard to see Microsoft’s logic in signing off a Windows Phone-flavoured Android-powered low end smartphone Trojan horse.

Windows Phone certainly needs a better growth strategy. Some might say it needs a growth strategy period. And, ironically, piggybacking on Android may be the best way to achieve that elusive momentum.

At the time of writing Nokia had not responded to a request for comment. Update: A Nokia spokeswoman declined to comment, saying Nokia doesn’t comment on market rumour and speculation.

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WSJ: An Android-Powered Nokia Phone Clad In Windows Phone Clothing Coming Later This Month

lumia-520-front-tiles-cp

Rumours that primary Windows Phone OEM Nokia has been two-timing Microsoft by keeping an Android phone project on its backburner have been doing the rounds for a while now (aka the rumoured Nokia Normandy device). But yesterday the Wall Street Journal tipped more fuel on this fire, citing “people familiar with the matter” confirming that Nokia will unveil an Android powered device at the Mobile World Congress tradeshow in Barcelona later this month.

Now there’s plenty of WTF here. Not least because Nokia is about to hand over its mobile making division to Windows Phone maker Microsoft in exchange for a substantial pile of cash (€5.44 billion/$ 7.2 billion). So why would Microsoft, which has its own mobile platform, sanction its soon to be mobile making division to build an Android-powered device?

On the surface, it sounds like madness. And yet, as others have previously speculated, there is potentially method to this madness — being as Windows Phone has failed to challenge Android’s reach at the lower end of the smartphone market.

The bottom-of-the-range $ 180 Lumia 520 (pictured at the top of this post), which was announced at last year’s MWC conference and has sold relatively well for a Windows Phone, is still a ways more pricey than the least expensive Droids (sub-$ 50 Android handsets are available in emerging markets).

Ergo, switching to Android for budget devices would be one way for Microsoft to slice itself a larger portion of a very large (and growing) chunk of the smartphone pie.

If the best traction for Windows Phone has been at the lower end price-point, then pushing that lower still could be a winning combination — even if the resulting phones won’t technically be Windows Phones. Yet they will look and taste like Windows Phones, spreading the flavour of Microsoft’s mobile OS further than it’s thus far been able to go.

The Android powered Nokia device the WSJ’s sources discuss would come preloaded with Microsoft (and Nokia) services, including a Nokia Android app store, rather than Google software and Google’s Play store — effectively making it a Trojan horse pushed inside the Android fortress to ‘on-ramp’ first time smartphone users.

Or a plucky landing on the shores of occupied territory, if you will.

The device would also not resemble vanilla Android in terms of its UI, but would rather be a fork of Android — just as Amazon has forked Android for its Kindle Fire tablets and to further its own ends, not Google’s — with Nokiasoft apparently dressing the interface to make it look like Windows Phone.

Doing that would mean the budget Droid could acclimatize first time smartphone users to a Windows Phone world — i.e. in the hopes they will upgrade to a full-fat Windows Phone Lumia smartphone in the fullness of time.

According to the WSJ, Nokia engineers have been developing the Android device before agreeing to sell its mobile making division to Microsoft last fall. But up to now it hasn’t been clear whether Nokia planned to move ahead with the project or not.

The newspaper’s sources confirm the handset will be unveiled later this month — so presumably the project has been okayed by Microsoft’s new CEO Satya Nadella.

Nokia is holding a press conference at MWC, where TC will be on hand to cover the news. (Albeit, Nokia’s understated invite for this event isn’t giving away any Droid-flavoured hints:)

Nokia MWC press invite

It’s not clear whether the Normandy Android landing is a stop-gap strategy while Microsoft retools Windows Phone for even lower prices smartphones. But the WSJ says Microsoft will be refocusing WP attention on flagship smartphones, to better compete at the higher end. (Yeah, good luck with that…)

At its earning call last month, Nokia — the only substantial Windows Phone OEM (controlling 90% of the market according to AdDuplex) — revealed it sold a total of just 30 million Lumia devices during in the whole of 2013.

Compare that to Android’s vast sprawl: Google announced 900M active Android activations in May last year. And cumulative active Android activations are likely to break the billion mark this year as the platform continues to expand to new device types to fuel further growth.

With comparative numbers like those it’s not hard to see Microsoft’s logic in signing off a Windows Phone-flavoured Android-powered low end smartphone Trojan horse.

Windows Phone certainly needs a better growth strategy. Some might say it needs a growth strategy period. And, ironically, piggybacking on Android may be the best way to achieve that elusive momentum.

At the time of writing Nokia had not responded to a request for comment. Update: A Nokia spokeswoman declined to comment, saying Nokia doesn’t comment on market rumour and speculation.

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Nokia is reportedly unveiling its low-end Android phone this month

If you’re eager to get an officially sanctioned glimpse at Nokia’s rumored Android cellphone, you may not have to wait long. Sources speaking to the Wall Street Journal claim that Nokia will unveil the low-end handset, currently nicknamed Normandy,…

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