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App, Fob, Tag combination helps prevent device loss
Accessory manufacturer Kensington has produced peripherals for computing aficionados for years. A new gadget by the company is the Kensington Proximo security system, which leverages the Bluetooth 4 technology found in Apple's latest crop of devices and promises that the fob-and-app combo will help prevent expensive mobile device loss. Electronista was given the opportunity to evaluate the new technology, and put it through its paces over the last week.
Company expected to post record $50B-plus quarter
Apple, which begins its fiscal year on October 1, will release the results of its holiday quarter sales on January 23 at 5PM ET, an hour after the markets have closed for the day. The company is widely expected to break its own all-time record for sales, with results from the iPhone 5, the fourth-generation iPad, the iPad mini and a refreshed iPod lineup representing iOS products, and a refreshed MacBook and iMac line representing the latest Macs.
Regular Sprint phones ineligible for PAYGo service
Sprint will be rolling out its prepaid service model in the coming weeks, bringing a Sprint-branded service option to customers that do not want to sign up for a contract. Sprint As You Go will reportedly be starting up on January 25, with one flip phone, one feature phone, and two smartphones eligible for no-contract service. The prepaid service will not, though, be open to customers using standard Sprint smartphones.
Chitika sees iPad share dropping 7.14 percent over holidays
Apple's iPad and iPad mini may have been a top-selling item over the holiday period, but entries from competitors sold strongly enough to slightly loosen Cupertino's stranglehold on the tablet sector. This according to new figures out from Chitika Insights, which looked at hundreds of millions of smartphone and tablet ad impressions from December 1 to December 27, 2012 in Canada and the United States. Chitika found that tablets from Amazon, Samsung, Google, and Microsoft gained a combined total of 5.5 percent market share over that period, while Apple's iPad lost 7.14 percent share.
Samsung should follow suit with own actions in Europe, ITC told
Apple, in a new filing with the US International Trade Commission, has argued that Samsung should drop all of its US-based court claims for sales injunctions over alleged infringement of "standards-essential patents" (SEPs) as it has done in Europe, using the Galaxy S maker's own claim that such a move is in the "best interest of consumers" against it. Samsung's key offensive tactics in its legal battle with Apple appear to be backfiring.
Evenly-applied ruling redacts some post-trial filings on both sides
Judge Lucy Koh, overseeing the Apple versus Samsung smartphone patent trials in the US, has tossed some declarations from both companies attached to briefs and other court filings that were "not explicitly articulated within the briefing page limits." In the order striking the declarations, the judge said that "the Court has not relied on any of this documentation in ruling on the parties' post-trial motions," possibly indicating other post-trial orders are expected soon.
Microsoft says Google has blocked YouTube search
Google and Microsoft's competition in the search market has resulted in Google blocking phones running Microsoft's Windows Phone platform from operating properly with Google-owned YouTube, according to Microsoft representatives. The allegation came today as part of a larger explanation of Microsoft's ongoing effort to encourage regulators to take action against the search giant for anticompetitive actions. According to Microsoft, Google executives have told YouTube personnel "not to enable a first-class YouTube experience on Windows Phones."
'Patent troll' renews legal hostilities against four manufacturers
Following the announcement of an extension of its patent license agreement with Research In Motion which added "coverage for 4G, LTE, and LTE-Advanced products," non-practicing entity InterDigital announced a new United Stated International Trade Commission (USITC) complaint against Huawei, Nokia, Samsung, and ZTE. InterDigitial is seeking "permanent injunction and compensatory damages in an amount to be determined, as well as enhanced damages based on willful infringement" of the company's patents.
Thieves assault store workers
Robbers stole an estimated $1.32 million in Apple products from the Paris Opera Apple Store on New Year's Eve, Dow Jones reports. A group of armed men in masks came in through the service entrance three hours after the store closed, at about 1700 GMT. At the time, only a cleaner and a single security guard were present. The robbers nevertheless assaulted them, inflicting slight injuries in one case.
Popular Linux distro moves to smartphones
As was hinted yesterday, Ubuntu founder Mark Shuttleworth announced today the pending release of a new, touch-enabled version of Ubuntu targeted at smartphones. Ubuntu for phones brings its own gesture-driven interface to the smartphone sector, with personalized graphics, integrated search, and support for native and HTML5 apps. Shuttleworth showed off the new operating system in a virtual keynote on YouTube, one in which he sought to position Ubuntu as a way of unifying the user experience across the numerous form factors that define modern computing.
'Do Not Disturb' iOS 6 bug to fix itself January 7
People will have to wait for a bug with the "Do Not Disturb" mode in iOS 6 to resolve itself, according to a new Apple support document. The webpage notes that the glitch should disappear after January 7. Problems began yesterday, when Do Not Disturb started staying on past scheduled times. At the moment, the only way to still use the feature is to disable scheduling and manually flip Do Not Disturb on and off.
Cloud-based TV, DVR service could launch mid-2013
A project by Intel to roll out a virtual cable TV service with per-channel subscriptions and a cloud-based DVR service has hit longer delays than previously thought, with the negotiations with media companies being the main cause. Recent reports suggest that the discussions pushed the service's potential launch from the end of 2012 to mid-2013 or as late as the fourth quarter.
US, European retailers to stock dock at $40 cost
The dock for the Google Nexus 7 is going on sale later this month in both Europe and the United States, according to reports. Originally leaked during the summer alongside a travel cover, the Asus Dock for Nexus 7 is said to be priced at $40 in the US and 30 euros ($40) in Europe, and is open for pre-orders through various online retailers.
Apple case undermined by Steve Jobs, Tim Cook
A federal court in San Francisco has granted a requested dismissal of an Apple lawsuit over Amazon's use of the term "Appstore," Bloomberg reports. Apple has filed for a US trademark on the name "App Store," and in the court case it argued that Amazon's use of the term "Appstore" is intentionally confusing. Amazon countered, though, by saying that the term "app store" has become generic; with today's dismissal, the company should be able to continue selling Android apps unimpeded.
Waze already tied into iOS 6 Maps system
Apple is "sniffing around" Waze and contemplating a buyout of the company, new rumors indicate. Waze describes its iOS app as a "community-based" traffic and navigation service, with over 30 million users. Users share date not only on traffic but things like accidents, checkpoints, and gas prices. In some cases, data is uploaded to Waze servers automatically.
2014 Kia Sorento to feature Google functionality
Kia Motors and Google announced today a partnership that will see the search giant providing content and search-based APIs for the next generation of Kia's UVO eServices telematics system. The Kia 2014 Kia Sorento CUV, available in the first quarter of 2013, will be the first to implement these new APIs, which will allow for the integration of Google Maps and Google Places into the driving experience.
RocketStor features dual SATA bays
HighPoint Technologies has released a new eSATA storage dock that features dual 6Gb/s SATA bays. Offering support for various combinations of 3.5" and 2.5" SATA SSDs and hard drives, the RocketStor 5322 has no capacity limits and can be connected to eSATA RAID controllers for Data Protection and Stripe Performance. The dock is also fully compatible with both Windows and Mac platforms and offers hot-swap support for quickly changing drives.
Pact with Broadcom allegedly already signed
Apple is working on implementing 802.11ac Wi-Fi into 2013 Mac models, according to sources for The Next Web. The people say that Apple has signed a deal with chipmaker Broadcom, even as the ac standard is still undergoing some revisions. Modern Apple hardware, such as the iMac, supports Wi-Fi standards up to 802.11n.
Promotion requires Amazon Student Prime membership
Amazon is offering a discount on its large Kindle Fire HD 8.9 for students, ahead of the winter term. The offer, lasting for the entire month of January, grants Amazon Student Members with an active Prime account a discount of $50 off the tablet, the same as a one-day deal the retailer held in mid-December.
Talks still ongoing with major Japanese publishers
Apple should finally launch paid titles at the Japanese iBookstore sometime this year, according to sources for AllThingsD. The company is reportedly negotiating with several Japanese publishers, such as Kodansha, Shogakukan, and Kadokawa. Talks are said to be making progress, and agreements may be completed soon. Allegedly, though, a launch won't happen as fast as the Nikkei has suggested, which is later this month.
TSMC deal allegedly moving from possibility to fact
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company has won a contract to start manufacturing A6X processors for Apple in the near future, says Taiwanese publication the Commercial Times. The A6X is used in the fourth-generation iPad, and to date has been manufactured by Samsung. A TSMC version of the processor is expected to reach trial production sometime in the first quarter of 2013.
Evolution Kit to provide hardware, software upgrade for HDTVs
Samsung is set to reveal a way for owners of televisions in its 2012 range to add features from its upcoming 2013 HDTV catalog. The Evolution Kit, to be fully unveiled at CES next week, will make changes to the way existing smart televisions will work, not only in terms of software, but also by adding more hardware to the TV set.
Developer code for iOS 7 could arrive during WWDC
Identifiers for iOS 7 and a next-generation iPhone have started appearing in app usage logs, several developers say. One developer in particular has recorded an "iPhone6,1" device running iOS 7; for reference, the iPhone 5 is listed either as "iPhone5,1" or "iPhone5,2," depending on the cellular bands it uses. The new identifiers are linked to an IP address at Apple's Cupertino headquarters, which suggests that Apple is testing out early builds of iOS 7 with pre-existing apps.
Google Project Glass
Google's Project Glass is still under development with many aspects of the product yet to be nailed down, according to an interview with Google's Barbak Parviz by IEEE Spectrum. Although Google has previously outlined its broad plans for the device as platform for the next generation of wearable computing, Parvix also offered some additional insights into Google plans for the device. Google, he says, is working on developing Project Glass so that it allows users to quickly connect with others through images and video, while also enabling rapid access to information.
New larger Las Vegas event to start September 2014
CTIA is combining two mobile trade shows into one larger industry event, starting from next year. The US wireless industry group will merge the existing CTIA spring event, held in Las Vegas during May, with the fall event, renamed MobileCon in 2012 and takes place in San Jose in October, and create a single show that will be held between the two.
Asus intros Vivo Smart Tablet with TranSleeve
Asus has launched its Atom-powered Vivo Smart Tablet. Unlike the Asus Vivo Tab RT, the Vivo Smart Tablet runs Windows 8 on x86 and is backwards compatible with Windows desktop software. The device can be paired with an optional TranSleeve Keyboard that does triple duty as a cover, keyboard and stand, adopting a similar approach to the Microsoft Surface.
Specifications of Touch similar to Zenbook Prime
Asus has updated its website to include details of an unannounced notebook, though not accompanied with the usual marketing fanfare. The 15-inch U500VZ Zenbook Touch is listed in the online product catalog with specifications that seem relatively similar to that of recent Zenbook Prime iterations, but includes a touchscreen.
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