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ReportTT: Apple will sell audio ads for rumored iRadio service

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jun 6, 2013 12:37 am

Reports of Apple planning to sell ads for an upcoming iRadio music streaming service have surfaced. Some expect Apple to unveil what many are dubbing iRadio as soon as next week at the annual Worldwide Developers Conference. These ads would likely be extremely targeted, making them valuable to advertisers and Apple.

 

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Highly targeted advertising would fetch higher prices for Apple and would be in demand by marketers. if this is the case, it could be all doom and gloom for the already-struggling Pandora. According to a former Apple executive, the ads will be sold via Apple's existing iAd mobile ad network.

 

As Apple has access to more than just a user's listening tastes, ads could be even more targeted than those provided by Pandora. Pandora is only able to target ads based upon music listening preferences, gender, and zip code.

 

Of course, all of this is just speculation up until Apple actually unveils the service. If it makes an appearance at next week's WWDC, you'll be able to read about it here on TweakTown.

Microsoft has released a video detailing Windows 8.1

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Operating Systems | Posted: Jun 6, 2013 12:04 am

Many are excited for some of the improvements Windows 8.1 will bring to Windows 8. While we still don't have a public preview to play around with, Microsoft has whetted our appetite by releasing a video detailing some of the changes we can expect to see when the public preview goes live at the end of this month.

 

 

Some of the larger changes include the Al;l Apps screen, which has received the ability to sort Apps by the date installed, most used, or category. Users can now select, pin, and personalize multiple apps with a simple gesture. Search has also seen an improvement, bringing together local and web content in one location.

 

Watch the video and let us know if the new improvements are enough to encourage you to switch to Windows 8.

Continue reading 'Microsoft has released a video detailing Windows 8.1' (full post)

All YouTube users get new 'One Channel' layout

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Internet & Websites | Posted: Jun 5, 2013 11:33 pm

YouTube has rolled out the new YouTube "One Channel" design to all users. The new design is meant to unify the layout across desktop, TV, and mobile. It features cover photos and trailers, but comes with many more advantages according to Google.

 

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The One Channel design originally launched back in February, but as a limited trial. In March, YouTube allowed channel users to make the switch if they wanted to check out the new design for themselves. Back in May, YouTube announced that everyone would be switched over to the new design today. Google says the following are advantages of the new layout:

 

  • Gain more subscribers. Google says it has seen an increase in new subscribers for channels already using the new design.
  • Get more channel visits. Channels with the One Channel design have seen a significant increase in visits to their channel page because clicks from the guide always go directly to the channel, again according to Google.
  • Let your brand shine through in more places. With the One Channel design, you now have channel art visible on iOS & Android apps, mobile web and TV.

ADATA shows enterprise SSDs with new LSI controller among them

By: Chris Ramseyer | More News: Storage | Posted: Jun 5, 2013 11:05 pm

Computex Taipei 2013 - The enterprise SSD market is a tough nut to crack, just ask OCZ. That doesn't mean others aren't seeing the same projections that show enterprise storage revenue on the rise. With the consumer PC market shrinking as mobile increases, some are looking at other areas of growth and enterprise is where the action is for the next few years.

 

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Contrary to what was reported yesterday by The Preview Site, the new ADATA SX2000 is not a SAS 12Gb part; it uses a PCIe connector that looks similar to SAS. The interface isn't exactly new; Micron's P320h uses it and Dell has already shipped several 12 generation PowerEdge servers with the technology.

Continue reading 'ADATA shows enterprise SSDs with new LSI controller among them' (full post)

FreedomPop to provide free data, unlimted SMS, 200 minutes for free

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: Jun 5, 2013 11:03 pm

We've occasionally written about FreedomPop here on TweakTown. The company looks to offer a small amount of free 4G data--usually 500MB--and then charge if users would like to use more. Now, the company is looking to expand into the cellular communications market with a similar strategy.

 

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FreedomPop announced that they will be offering unlimited SMS, 200 minutes, and 500MB of data each month for free. Included in this free service is unlimited calling between FreedomPop users for no extra charge. Of course, there will be no hidden charges, no dealing with wireless carriers, and no monthly fees.

 

The service will launch later this summer on "several popular Android phones."

Amazon makes Kindle DX available again for $299

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jun 5, 2013 10:29 pm

Amazon has once again started selling its large Kindle DX e-reader. The Kindle DX was originally available back in 2010 and features a massive 9.7-inch display. It was available up until October 2012, at which time Amazon announced the Kindle Paperwhite and new Kindle Fire tablets.

 

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The reason for its return isn't exactly clear, nor is it clear how long the Kindle DX will be available. Some suspect that the device might be available for a limited time, so you would be encouraged to pull the trigger on it sooner rather than later.

 

In other Kindle-related news, Amazon appears to have finally stopped selling the Kindle Keyboard.

ADATA to enter the personal cloud market; shows low drive count NAS at Computex Taipei 2013

By: Chris Ramseyer | More News: Storage | Posted: Jun 5, 2013 10:16 pm

Computex Taipei 2013 - We didn't get a lot of time to talk with ADATA today, so more details will follow shortly. At the booth we found several interesting products though. First up are two personal cloud products that use NAS technology to give users access to their data anywhere in the world through other devices. You can use the Internet--err 'the cloud'--to access your files. I use this technology everyday on my notebook, smartphone, and other people's hardware to get to my files. Since I'm literally on the other side of the globe right now, it's an important detail to toss in.

 

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We're not going to try to BS you, this is obviously a rebranded unit from ASUSTOR. ADATA's global network of distribution should help products like this gain traction. I've said for years the most important tech in my home and office is my NAS server and that digital home needs one as the foundation for ever device to connect to. With the new cloud features, your data is no longer tied to a physical device on your person as you can access it from anywhere.

Continue reading 'ADATA to enter the personal cloud market; shows low drive count NAS at Computex Taipei 2013' (full post)

ADATA announces SX920 SSD that uses Marvell controller

By: Chris Ramseyer | More News: Storage | Posted: Jun 5, 2013 10:08 pm

Computex Taipei 2013 - ADATA's SX series branding has always been associated with LSI SandForce controllers. Even before SX, the S Series products like S510 and S511 were LSI SandForce. It's been quite some time since we've seen ADATA using a Marvell controller. The last time I can think of is at Computex three years ago when ADATA closed a section of their booth so we could test a then new SATA III product based on the same controller used in the Crucial C300, the world's first SATA III controller.

 

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Looking to increase diversity to the brand, the SATA SX920 uses a Marvell controller and appears to be ready for entry into the channel. We suspect this is the same controller used in the SanDisk Extreme II and Plextor M5 Pro Xtreme. Talking to the product manager at the show, we learned that SX920 uses Type C Toggle NAND, the good stuff that everyone wants but few are getting access to.

 

With 20nm yields down and next-gen LSI SandForce stuck somewhere in 3Q or 4Q, ADATA needed a product to compete with M500 and Extreme II. Personally I would have liked to have seen ADATA not follow the SX product naming scheme and release this under a different name since SX920 is quite a bit different than SX900 and SX910. The five-year warranty from the SX910 didn't carry over either.

Microsoft-funded study says Internet Explorer 10 uses up to 18% less power than Chrome, Firefox

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Internet Browsers | Posted: Jun 5, 2013 10:04 pm

Microsoft has commissioned a study that shows that Internet Explorer 10 is the most efficient browser on Windows 8. The study's data suggests that if every user of Windows 8 switched to Internet Explorer 10, we would save enough energy to power 10,000 US hoseholds.

 

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Microsoft will likely use this new "fact" as part of its marketing push to regain some of the browser market share. However, just how important is power consumption? Quite frankly, I'm not going to make the switch to Internet Explorer just because it uses slightly less power. On a notebook, though, the argument starts to gain some validity.

 

After all, most people surf the web for the majority of their computer use, so saving up to 18 percent of your battery life could result in a big boost. But with Haswell's jump in battery life, this argument starts to lose some of its impact.

Plextor prepares m.2 (NGFF) at Computex Taipei 2013

By: Chris Ramseyer | More News: Storage | Posted: Jun 5, 2013 9:44 pm

Computex Taipei 2013 - With our meetings at Hyatt finished, Cameron and I finally had a chance to get to the show floor for a few minutes today. There we saw the future of SSDs at just about every booth we stopped by: NGFF or Next Generation Form Factor, commercially known as m.2. Over the next few days, we'll have a lot of NGFF product images and slide in some details about the interface that most are not familiar with yet. We should be able to take a few products back to the test lab as well.

 

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The largest crowd at Plextor's booth was around the two NGFF products seen above. This form factor has several versions, roughly 14 or 15 the last I looked into it. That number will come down to just a few common sizes once system builders roll out motherboards, notebooks and Ultrabooks with the new form factor.

 

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Electrically, NGFF can connect to a SATA bus or PCIe. The PCIe connection moves us past the limits of SATA III, making SSDs exciting once again from a performance standpoint. Companies will once again race to maximize the performance of products and more distinction in the market place will occur.

 

Right out of the gate, NGFF will bring sequential read performance close to 800MB/s. Sequential write performance will increase as well. Plextor's offering shows up to 780MB/s read and 550MB/s write at this point in time in the marketing documents.

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