Put away the pitchforks for a moment, because that whole data loss thing involving the Sidekick and Microsoft's Danger unit might not be the Redmond company's fault after all. So who is to blame? Oracle, Linux, and Sun, Microsoft said in not so many words.
"Sidekick runs on Danger's proprietary service that Microsoft inherited when it acquired Danger in 2008. The Danger service is built on a mix of Danger created technologies and third party technologies," Microsoft explained to TGDaily. "Microsoft's other cloud computing projects are totally separate from the Danger Service and do not rely on the Danger Service technology."
There's actually a whole lot more to the story for anyone who cares to read through it all, including a possible sabotage scenario. In short, this could be a situation where it was simply easier to point the finger at Microsoft, justified or not. And more than just pointing fingers, the Redmond company finds itself on the receiving end of two class-action lawsuits alleging that it, along with T-Mobile, failed to "adequately ensure the safety, security, and availability of the data belonging" to Sidekick users.
Dell’s first Android phone, the Mini 3i, was originally a China only release. Of course there were rumors that it might find its way to American shores, but they are rumors no more. Michael Dell has come out and said the Mini 3i will be available in the US early in 2010.
Dell mused on the smartphone market in a speech, saying, “The internet in your pocket ... and new platforms that are coming out are pretty interesting. Some of them resemble things that we're pretty familiar with, in terms of open systems and the ability to compete in an open ecosystem. I think you'll begin to see us show up there, gradually.”
The Wall Street Journal recently reported that the Mini 3i would be modified to run on AT&T in the US. With Dell’s admission that the phone is indeed headed stateside, it seems likely that AT&T will get their first Android set in Q1 2010
Thus far, every official Android phone has been running a 528MHz Qualcomm chip based on the ARM11 core. While inexpensive and prolific, they really aren’t very fast. In fact, the ARM11 chip may be holding Android phones back. The Acer A1 is breaking the mold, and not a bit too soon.
While previously leaked specs indicated its CPU would be running at 768MHz, Acer has now said it will have a 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon chip. It’s also rocking Android version 1.6, known as Donut. The upcoming smartphone is equipped with a 3.5 inch 800 x 480 display, and a 5 megapixel camera. It will also have an Acer branded cloud sync application.
Acer hasn’t released any additional specs at this time. No US carrier support has been talked about either. Even if we don’t see it in the US, it could set a new standard for Android handsets everywhere.
Luxury always comes at a price, and for the new Samsung phone designed by Giorgio Armana, that price is equal to 10 one-hundred dollar bills.
"Today more than ever, elegant dressing is part of daily business life. When Samsung asked me to desgin the new business and lifestype smartphone, I decided to use my fashion aesthetic to create it," Armani said.
The $1,000 smartphone features a 3.5-inch AMOLED touchscreen, Microsoft Windows Mobile 6.5, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, 7.2Mbps HSDPA, 5.7Mbps HSUPA, WiFi connectivity, Bluetooth, FM radio, TV-out, GPS navigation, a 5MP camera, and 8GB of internal memory, which can be expanded to 32GB via a MicroSD slot.
Samsung apparently isn't feeling the love for the U.S. market and instead says the Giorgio Armani-Samsung smartphone will be available in Italy, the UK, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Russia, China, and the UAE. Would you have bought one anyway?
Apple Insider has also found its anonymous knight in stealthy armor. It identified its source as a Microsoft/Danger insider. For those of you who don’t know, Danger is the company that developed the T-Mobile Sidekick before being bought by Microsoft for $500 million in 2008. Danger is rumored to have been converted into “Pink”.
The insider source echoed the claims made by MobileCrunch’s source. But then the anonymous-source ego came into the picture and he made a desperate attempt to prove his superioriy as the more conscientious anonymous source of the two. He believes that the person who originally spilled the beans is clearly a “disgruntled former or current employee.”
“I have my share of disgruntlement about the situation, but it never occurred to me to do something like that. This is actually the worst possible timing for Microsoft for this information to come out (on the heels of the awful reviews of WM 6.5), and I suspect that it has already caused irreparable damage to their relationships with a number of key partners, to which I say, 'Bravo, leaker, well played.' Now allow me to twist the knife...,” he said. He is quite certain that Microsoft had intentionally leaked photos of “Pure” and “Turtle” – the two Pink phones.
But the move seems to have backfired as the tepid response to the leaks seems to have given Microsoft cold feet. I hope you are in the vicinity of a few grains of salt.
Adobe’s plans for the Flash Player will help to reduce the problems developers experience porting apps to multiple platforms. According to Adrain Ludwig, Adobe’s product marketing manager for the Flash platform, “Fundamentally, right now if you are a web developer, or a mobile developer no one goes back and forth between the two. Now, if you have a great mobile idea, go ahead and build it and put it on a mobile device.”
Initially missing from the list was Apple’s ubiquitous iPhone. Suitable teeth gnashing over the slight followed until a subsequent announcement by John Loiacono, the senior vice president of Adobe’s Creative Solutions Business. During his key note address, Loiacono said the iPhone would get something a bit better: Adobe Flash Professional CS5. CS5 will permit developers to create Flash applications that run native on the iPhone. Aditya Bansod, of Adobe Developers Connection, says this is due to demands by Flash developers eager to create apps for Apple’s mobile device.
According to market research firm iSuppli, Microsoft's Windows Mobile OS for smartphones will outflank most of the competition, nearly triple its userbase, and take the No. 2 spot in the global market, all by the year 2013.
As it stands, Windows Mobile can be found on 27.7 million smartphones, but if iSuppli's prediction proves accurate, that number will balloon to 67.9 million in just a few years, giving Windows Mobile a 15.3 percent share of the global market. Should that happen, only Symbian would claim more users, who iSuppli says will control 47.5 percent of the market.
So what's the catch? Put simply, Windows Mobile 7 will have to succeed and kick ass. As competition heats up, Microsoft can't afford to "screw up" again and fall further behind its competitors.
"Microsoft in 2010 will introduce an updated version of its operating system, Windows Mobile 7, which is expected to sport an enhanced user interface and browser as well as multi-touch control," Tina Teng, senior wireless communications analyst for iSuppli, said in a report. "This will make it much more competitive with the alternatives on the market."
Let's first see if WIndows Mobile 6.5 -- slated for an October 6 release -- is enough to keep WinMo users from jumping ship before Microsoft sets sail with version 7.
Industry sources presumably in the know say that Acer, who is still developing Windows Mobile-based smartphones, has decided to shift its attention to the Android platform. The sources say that half, if not more, of Acer's new handsets launched in 2010 will be built around the open-source OS.
This won't have much effect on Acer's production partners, the sources added, saying the company will continue to outsource both Windows Mobile and Android smartphones to Compal Communications and Inventec Appliances.
Not wasting any time, Acer is expected to release its first Android-based smartphone, the A1, sometime next month. According to pre-order info at eXpansys (France and Germany), the A1 will sport a 3.5-inch touchscreen display, Qualcomm 8250 processor clocked at 768MHz, an internal GPS antenna, a 5MP color camera with auto-focus, and a 1350mAh battery.
Once upon a time, I dismissed the iPhone as a wannabe smartphone, lacking the key features that truly warranted that label. Since I wrote that column about two years ago, Apple has gone on a feature-adding rampage—adding push email, support for Exchange servers, third-party applications, and a veritable alphabet soup of new acronyms (GPS, MMS, and 3G, for starters). Two years into the iPhone era, the device is so much more than a phone with an iPod attached— it’s an instant-on, always-connected, pocket-sized computer.
On paper, the 3GS doesn’t seem like a major upgrade from the previous-generation iPhone, especially when you consider that many of the bullet points on the 3GS’s feature list came to older iPhones in the form of the 3.0 firmware release. And at first glance, even the new 3GS-exclusive features—a faster CPU, more memory, a more capable GPU, faster network connectivity, a higher-resolution camera that can finally shoot video, voice control for key features, and a compass—seem like a mixture of unsexy, incremental, shoulda-been-there-already features, and just plain meh. Worse, some of the features require carrier support, so things like MMS messages, higher-speed HSPDA support, and tethering won’t be available in the United States until AT&T deigns to support them.
Palm on Monday announced the availability of webOS 1.2, the latest operating system for its Palm Pre smartphones, and with it a whole bunch of new features.
"For starters, we've beefed up Palm Synergy to include LinkedIn contact syncing," Jon Zilber, Palm's director of online communications, wrote in a blog post. "Info from LinkedIn profiles (like job titles) will now appear in your Palm Pre contacts. The new update also facilitates links across more different flavors of IM contacts. Business-oriented webOS 1.2 customers will also appreciate support for heterogeneous EAS policies (for workplaces with a mix of end-users in which some accounts support EAS policies and others don’t)."
In addition to the above, Zilber said the updated OS also includes the ability to filter emails in a current folder just by typing a search term, users can download files in the browser, music buffs can download songs from the Amazon MP3 Store via either WiFi or WAN, you can now tap a phone number in a calendar note to dial it, the ability to pause a podcast and pick up where you left off when you unpause, and cut/paste functionality in webpages and emails.
Palm Pre owners have already started receiving the update via over-the-over download.