The FCC is coming for the schools and churches just like that crazy guy on the corner told you! On June 12, it'll require anybody using a wireless microphone that operators in the 700 MHZ spectrum to stop using that mic. That's right. The purge is coming! For microphones!. Actually, it'll affect Broadway shows, too. Will the FCC be able to round up the ne'er-do-wells? Will Google ruin U.S.-China relations? Well, that's another story. Literally.Subscribe with iTunes (audio) Subscribe with iTunes (video) Subscribe with RSS (audio) Subscribe with RSS (video) EPISODE 1150 … Read more
The Apple tablet rumors are going to keep coming until the company finally releases this thing. Tech bloggers, and now even the mainstream media, can't help themselves from wondering what Apple will or won't do with the forthcoming device, which is widely anticipated to be introduced at Apple's media event scheduled for Wednesday.
Here's the latest roundup of speculation about the tablet.
Most of the talk recently has been about Apple's looming event on January 27, where it's been widely reported that the company will unveil a tablet PC of some undetermined size. Whether this device is a game-changer along the lines of the original iPod or iPhone remains to be seen, but lost in the shuffle is the possibility that Amazon's breakthrough e-reader, the Kindle, may be on the verge of an upgrade.
To be clear, I don't have any inside information or anonymous sources telling me that Amazon's bought thousands of parts from some Taiwanese manufacturer. But let's speculate for a moment on the possibilities for a new Kindle and what it might look like.
For starters, the Kindle 2 (now called the Kindle, U.S. and international wireless, latest edition), was launched on February 9 of last year. That's relevant because in recent years Amazon has been doing its best to imitate Apple, and Apple tends to be fairly regimented in rolling out updates to its major products. For instance, new iPods tend to be announced in the fall, and new iPhones have been released in June.
You could argue that while Kindle has had upgrades to its wireless service (Amazon added an international option by moving from Sprint to AT&T) over the year--and the Kindle DX was released in May of 2009--the Kindle, now approaching a year old, is due for a bigger refresh in February, especially if Apple's slate proves to be the e-reader on steroids that many are positing it will. (As has been widely discussed, the potential big strike against the Apple tablet could be price. If it ends up being in $750-$1000 range, that's rather expensive for someone looking for a device you plan on primarily using as an e-reader).
In the last couple of days, Amazon has also made a few announcements pointing to the possibility that a new device is coming. In describing the terms of its new higher 70 percent royalty for authors using its Digital Text Platform for publishing content in the Kindle Store, Amazon said that it was planning on adding new features to both the store and the Kindle.
The next day it followed up with an announcement that it was releasing a new software development kit (SDK) so developers could create new apps for the Kindle. In its release, the company referred to the new apps being tested on the simulators for the current 6-inch Kindle and Kindle DX, but it's debatable how suitable the current Kindles are for running apps, particularly when you factor in the lag times of E-ink.
The release also has a quote from an EA Games executive talking about developing games for the Kindle platform.… Read more
For all the hubbub about the Apple tablet, it's still not totally clear what we're supposed to do with this device if and when it does arrive.
Details have leaked out about its potential as an all-encompassing device for accessing media--videos, music, games, books, magazines, and newspapers--and we have a good idea that it is a 10-inch touch-screen slate-style form factor with a virtual keyboard for text input. But whether we need yet another potentially expensive device is still a question mark for many.
The idea of slate or tablet computing has been done before, and so far it hasn't clicked with consumers. It's also true that we already have smartphones, music players, laptops, and e-readers to do all the things that the tablet will reportedly do. So while many mainstream gadget shoppers still puzzle over whether they would buy such a device (sight unseen for now) it is interesting to see the results of consumer surveys on the topic. And it also highlights the outsized expectations Apple faces when it comes to any of its new products.
ChangeWave and Retrevo have each put out their findings from polling consumers about their interest in an Apple tablet and their expectations for it.
ChangeWave gauged the interest of 3,314 respondents earlier this month of buying an Apple tablet for themselves or someone else. Four percent said they were "very likely" and 14 percent "somewhat likely" to buy a device they've never seen. ChangeWave is a research network that regularly polls early adopters on technology. … Read more
This week's Apple tablet rumors are incessant and ever-mounting, but a big rumor rundown from the Wall Street Journal that posted late last night introduced several new wrinkles to the expected Apple tablet, the most notable in my eyes being the use of the tablet as a "shared media device."
According to sources, not only will the tablet (or iWhatHaveYou) aim to reinvent the concept of shared media, but the device will focus on multi-user sharing, with concepts such as sticky notes and a camera that could identify the user and, possibly, bring up their personalized content. … Read more
As the date of the Apple event next week approaches, more details about the device are leaking out.
On Wednesday night, the Wall Street Journal reported that Apple's newest gadget could be a hub for all kinds of media: magazines, newspapers, books, text books, music, games, and video. All of that has been speculated about before, but the target demographic and the primary use for the device--which falls somewhere between a smartphone and a laptop--has been more of a mystery. Now it seems we're starting to have a clearer picture: the device has been purposely designed to be … Read more
Breaking news during the show has Verizon admitting to cutting off the Internet access of people accused of illegal downloading. But hey, they don't throttle,they say. Great! Except for cutting off people is really an extreme from of throttling. And also, Verizon isn't getting proof for this, just accusations. The problems with this policy are immeasurable and we discuss them. Oh and Bing may oust Google on the iPhone.Subscribe with iTunes (audio) Subscribe with iTunes (video) Subscribe with RSS (audio) Subscribe with RSS (video) EPISODE 1148
The Times to Charge for Frequent Access to Its Web … Read more
I'm talking about the New York Times and the paper of record's announcement Wednesday that it has decided to begin implementing some form of fee for frequent online readers next year.
As my colleague Larry Dignan over at ZDNet wrote earlier today, NYTimes.com users will be able to read a small number of articles for free each month, but will have to pony up if they exceed that cap.
The Times, itself, puts it … Read more
A few months ago, you had no desire for a tablet computer. The market, after all, has hyped tablets for years, to little effect.
Now, with Apple expected to launch its tablet, you've mortgaged your house so you can buy one. Analysts are projecting that we'll buy tens of millions of such tablets this year.
Because Apple has blessed the category as "cool."
Sure, Apple gets it wrong sometimes. How many Apple TVs do you own? "Zero" is the correct answer. But on balance, we're willing to bet Apple will get a … Read more
As speculation over an Apple tablet reaches a crescendo before the January 27 event, analysts offer their insights into what will power the device--or devices, as the case may be.
Richard Doherty, director of technology consulting firm Envisioneering Group, believes that multiple tablets and/or a Macbook with touch-screen features will emerge. So, what's inside depends on the device. "Anything that's not a Mac touchscreen, will be an ARM processor," according to Doherty, who said he believes that Apple, sooner or later, will also bring out a MacBook that has tablet-like features, in addition to tablets. … Read more