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RumorTT: Retina-powered iMacs coming in October

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Computer Systems | Posted: Jul 4, 2012 12:42 am

DigiTimes has a nice rumor here today, where they're reporting that Apple's supply chain will begin supply components for the mass production of Apple's next-gen iMac, with a launch as early as October. The same sources have noted that Apple plans to bake the high-res Retina Display into all of their product lines, which means the iMac will get a beautiful new screen.




DigiTimes' sources state that Apple want to see Retina in all of their products, with hopes to overtake competitors in terms of screen resolution, since most other notebook and tablet PC makers are still catching up to the Full HD 1920x1080 resolution. With limited support for the Retina Display's resolution, it makes it more expensive to make, and adapt, than Full HD panels. Most PC makers have no plans to bump their screen resolutions up to the same spec, but things could change soon.


The all-in-one PC market is getting aggressive, and considering that Apple is the largest player in the all-in-one market, as well as a top-five vendor of the desktop PC market in terms of shipments, this should be something where Apple could really push some high-end products.

Judge rules public Twitter posts can be used against you in court and accessed without a search warrant

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jul 3, 2012 3:27 pm

In a ruling sure to have far-reaching consequences for how online speech is treated under the law, Manhattan Criminal Court Judge Sciarrino said that public Tweets do not have the same protection as private speech. In other words, what you say online publicly, i.e. Facebook update, Tweet, or otherwise, can be accessed and used against you in court sans a search warrent.




"The Constitution gives you the right to post, but as numerous people have learned, there are still consequences for your public posts," wrote Sciarrino in his ruling. "What you give to the public belongs to the public. What you keep to yourself belongs only to you."


A little back story: Harris, the person directly affected by this ruling, was arrested during the Occupy Wall Street protests when he, along with many others, walked down the roadway of the Brooklyn Bridge as opposed to the sidewalk. Before this march, he had deleted several Tweets that prosecutors believe contain evidence that directly contradicts one of his defenses.


He asserts that the police led the march and the prosecutors believe the Tweets say otherwise. Just in May, Twitter stepped up and filed a motion to squash the subpoena saying that the users retained ownership of their respective Tweets. This meant it wasn't their data to give up. The judge's ruling, however, grants ownership to the "public" rather than the user, if they are posted publicly.

Continue reading 'Judge rules public Twitter posts can be used against you in court and accessed without a search warrant' (full post)

Mobile operating system market getting overcrowded as Mozilla plans Firefox OS

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Operating Systems | Posted: Jul 3, 2012 2:18 pm

It appears that Mozilla, developer of the web browser Firefox and other things, is currently working on an "open mobile OS" that seems similar in many ways to Google's Chrome OS. The new OS will be based off of HTML 5 and open web standards and be designed to remove many of the barriers that currently make mobile website development difficult.




Mozilla has its sites set on emerging markets such as Brazil in 2013. The basic operations of the phone, calling, gaming and messaging, can be developed as HTML 5 applications. Mozilla is already seeing support from Deutsche Telekom, Etisalat, Smart, Sprint, Telecom Italia, Telefonica, and Telenor.


Gary Kovacs, CEO of Mozilla:


The introduction of the open mobile OS continues the Mozilla mission to promote opennes, innovation and opportunity on the Web for users and developers. As billions of users are expected to come online for the first time in the coming years, it is important to deliver a compelling smartphone experience that anyone can use.


Mozilla has been working on allowing HTML 5 to access the hardware more directly than was previously allowed for. They have been doing this through their "Boot to Gecko project" and it will allow HTML 5 apps to access the hardware like only a native app used to be able to. It will be interesting to see how this turns out, but it seems likely to follow Chrome OS in that it won't work very well.

Amazon EC2 outage happened because of the "leap second" bug, affected Netflix, Instagram and more

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Current Affairs | Posted: Jul 3, 2012 10:45 am

Over the weekend you might have noticed that a few of your popular sites weren't working, such as Instagram, Netflix, and more. This is thanks to a huge storm which took down most of Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud. Clients that are on this cloud are Netflix, Instagram, Pinterest, and more.




What caused the downtime? The "leap second" bug", which International time keepers adjusted, adding one second to the global time standards in order to offset differences between our ultra-precise atomic clocks and the natural rotation of our planet, a rotation which is ever so slightly irregular. Sometimes, such as back in 2008, there's a second that is added to adjust time as needed.


Amazon's servers weren't the only ones that were affected, Gawker (Lifehacker, Gizmodo and others), Reddit, Mozilla and many, many more fell prey to this leap second bug. During the update, some software can't handle the unexpected change in seconds, and the effects are, well, the events of the weekend.

Mozilla rename Boot to Gecko, now called Firefox OS, will slide onto handsets in 2013

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Operating Systems | Posted: Jul 3, 2012 10:19 am

Mozilla have just announced that they are renaming Boot to Gecko to Firefox OS, the company has talked of having support from multiple carriers worldwide, as well as a couple of device manufacturers. Firefox OS is a totally open source OS, and its interface is built from HTML5 and CSS web standards, making it very customizable.



A proof of concept was recently shown off running on Samsung's GALAXY S II, with the company pointing out its responsiveness to touch input, a 3D graphics demo, a full SMS client and on-screen keyboard, as well as a store for various web apps. The first Firefox OS-powered device will feature a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, and should launch sometime in early-2013 in Brazil through Telefonica's Vivo brand of entry-level handsets.




Manufacturing partners are looking to be TCL Communication Technology, and ZTE, with operators such as Deutsche Telekom, Etisalat, Smart, Sprint, Telecom Italia and Telenor all jumping on the Firefox OS bandwagon. Mozilla ia hoping Firefox OS will change how developers have to re-write their apps to run on the various mobile operating systems, with apps that can run in a browser but still look, and feel like a native app with access to underlying phone capabilities like calling, messaging and games.

Beats acquires streaming music provider MOG

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jul 3, 2012 9:15 am

It has finally been confirmed that music streaming service, MOG, has been acquired by Beats. Details of the acquisition aren't being made available to the public, but GigaOm initially reported that the price could have been hovering around $14 million, but sources close to MOG later said that the number was "significantly higher".




USA Today spoke to MOG founder and CEO David Hyman over e-mail, where he said:


The addition of MOG's music service to the Beats portfolio will provide a truly end-to-end music experience.


It's definitely an interesting move, with big players like Spotify being huge competition, and very established. But Beats' relationship with HTC will help them. Selling smartphones with Beats headphones and MOG trials with discounted subscriptions for example, could very well be the future for HTC.

HBO Go arrives in Android-based tablets up to ICS

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Apps | Posted: Jul 3, 2012 8:17 am

If you've been wondering why HBO Go was launched for the Amazon Kindle Fire a few weeks ago, and not Android-based devices, well, you can rest easy. The HBO Go app has hit version 1.5 and is now available on Google Play.




HBO Go's release notes state that it supports Android tablets running software up to and including Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich. This means that the recently-announced Google Nexus 7 tablet won't work, but considering Jelly Bean is fresh, this is no surprise.


You'll need HBO, and pay-tv to sign into the app, but you most likely already knew that if you were reading this news. If you do try it out, be sure to let us know how you go!

Latest ComScore numbers are in for US market, Android still leads, Apple is number two

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jul 3, 2012 7:09 am

The latest quarterly data from ComScore is in for the US smartphone market, and Android is still top dog with 50.9-percent of the market, up 0.8-percent. Apple has grown 1.7-percent to take 31.9-percent of the pie, Research in Motion has dropped 2 points to 11.4-percent, Microsoft is up a tenth of a point to 4-percent, and Symbian continues to fade, dropping 0.4-percent to 1.1-percent.




Who's the leading phone maker in the US? Samsung. Samsung take 25.7-percent of the market, gaining 0.1-percent this quarter. LG slipped 0.3 points to 19.1-percent, while iPhone maker Apple takes just 15-percent. Motorola is down 0.8 points to 12-percent, in fifth place sits HTC with 6.1-percent of the market, up 0.2 points this quarter.


With the current legal battles between Apple, Samsung and now Samsung's ally, Google, things should get more interesting with these numbers over the coming months.

Microsoft set to take a quarterly loss from their under-performing acquisition of aQuantive

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jul 3, 2012 6:17 am

Microsoft purchased aQuantive, an online advertising service, back in 2007 for $6.3 billion, and since then, Microsoft's online department has reported $9 billion in losses. Now Microsoft is poised to take a one-time $6.2 billion charge to offset the lack of revenue from aQuantive.




The non-cash charge is most likely going to push Microsoft $1 billion into the red for their fourth fiscal quarter ending in June, assuming that the $5.3 billion in profits pre-charge are correct. We should expect Microsoft's quarterly results on July 19. At the time of the deal, it was the largest Microsoft had ever made, and until the $7 billion Skype acquisition, it still was.


Considering that at the time, in order to counter Microsoft's acquisition of aQuantive, Google scooped up aQuantive's competitor, DoubleClick the year after. DoubleClick earned Google $9.7 billion in the last twelve months on $38 billion in revenue, mostly from advertisements. Microsoft have said in a statement:


The aQuantive acquisition continues to provide tools for Microsofts online advertising efforts, the acquisition did not accelerate growth to the degree anticipated, contributing to the write down.

Micron set to buy Elpida, for around $2.5 billion

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jul 3, 2012 5:51 am

Bankrupt Japanese chipset maker, Elpida Memory Inc., is set to be acquired by Micron Technology Inc. for an estimated 200 billion yen ($2.5 billion), according to the Nikkei newspaper. Out of this $2.5 billion, Micron will use $1.76 billion of it to pay Elpida's debts, leaving as much as 70-percent of Elpida's liabilities unpaid.




The Nikkei wouldn't disclose where they got the information from, unfortunately. Micron will then invest 100 billion yen in Elpida facilities including their plant in Hiroshima, Japan, in order to boost output of DRAM chips. After acquiring Elpida, it should double Micron's share of the global DRAM market, up to around 24-percent. Considering Micron are an Apple supplier, this should only be good news for both Micron, and Apple.


It will help the company compete with currently industry leader Samsung, as well as give them greater control over supply gaps that have caused the company to endure four straight quarterly losses, even though DRAM prices have fallen. Micron shares jumped 4.4-percent, the most since March 13, to close at $5.97 yesterday.

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