Blazarov writes: "After Microsoft shook the mobile world yesterday with the announcement of Windows Phone Series 7, Taiwanese manufacturer HTC responded today by unveiling three new phones at the World Mobile Congress in Barcelona. Among them is the new, top of the line Desire, which is basically a Nexus One with HTC's Sense UI and a slightly revised design sporting a new optical trackpad instead of the trackball. The second phone is the longly rumored Legend, the successor of the HTC Hero, featuring an all-aluminum body, faster processor and 3.2 AMOLED touch screen. Last but not least, HTC presents the HD Mini, a smaller version of its Windows Mobile flagship, the HD2. After this second day of WMC, it seems that the competition for the best smartphone on the market would get even more stiff...
theodp writes: On Tuesday, Google was awarded U.S. Patent No.7,664,751 for its invention of Variable User Interface Based on Document Access Privileges, which the search giant explains can be used to restrict what Internet content people can see 'based on geographical location information of the user and based on access rights possessed for the document.' From the patent: 'For example, readers from the United States may be given 'partial' access to the document while readers in Canada may be given 'full' access to the document. This may be because the content provider has been granted full rights in the document from the publisher for Canadian readers but has not been granted rights in the United States, so the content provider may choose to only enable fair use display for readers in the United States.' Oh well, at least Google is 'no longer willing to continue censoring our results on Google.cn'.
I was wrong, google is not billing this as an early termination fee. They are calling it an equipment recovery fee. I am set for my phone for the next two years (thank you $350 ETF from big red) but I would like to see someone challenge the new fee in court.
I apologise in advance if this has already been discussed in previous stories:
An early termination fee is for the early termination of a contract. Now I only skim the contract that I signed when I just bought my smart phone (HTC Eris) with Verizon a few months ago but I don't recall a contract with google or HTC. Only Verizon. How can Google charge an ETF when I don't have a contract with them?
from the this-will-go-over-well dept.
Following up on our discussion yesterday of annoying game distribution platforms, Ubisoft has announced the details of their Online Services Platform, which they will use to distribute and administer future PC game releases. The platform will require internet access in order to play installed games, saved games will be stored remotely, and the game you're playing will even pause and try to reconnect if your connection is lost during play. Quoting Rock, Paper, Shotgun:
"This seems like such a bizarre, bewildering backward step. Of course we haven't experienced it yet, but based on Ubi’s own description of the system so many concerns arise. Yes, certainly, most people have the internet all the time on their PCs. But not all people. So already a percentage of the audience is lost. Then comes those who own gaming laptops, who now will not be able to play games on trains, buses, in the park, or anywhere they may not be able to find a WiFi connection (something that’s rarely free in the UK, of course – fancy paying the £10/hour in the airport to play your Ubisoft game?). Then there's the day your internet is down, and the engineers can’t come out to fix it until tomorrow. No game for you. Or any of the dozens of other situations when the internet is not available to a player. But further, there are people who do not wish to let a publisher know their private gaming habits. People who do not wish to report in to a company they’ve no affiliation with, nor accountability to, whenever they play a game they’ve legally bought. People who don’t want their save data stored remotely. This new system renders all customers beholden to Ubisoft in perpetuity whenever they buy their games."
JoshuaInNippon writes: Central Japan Rail, the company the controls a vast majority of Japanese train tracks, announced on Jan. 25th that they want to bring their bullet train, known as the Shinkansen, to America. The company is hoping to take advantage of President Obama's call for high-speed rail and the potential for billions of dollars in funding from the federal stimulus package. While JR is looking at over 100 possibilities for tracks around the States, their top first pick so far would be a line in Florida, connecting Tampa, Orlando, and Miami. Other options include a track connect LA and Las Vegas, or a track in Texas. The company is also hoping to sell their MAGLEV technology, which has created some of the fastest test trains in the world (at over 300+ mph/ 500+ kmh). JR mentioned track options for the MAGLEV include a line between Baltimore and Washington D.C, a line between Chattanooga and Atlanta, or a line in Pennsylvania. While there is already steep competition coming from American and European companies with similar ideas, JR is pitching their complete train systems as extremely safe and environmentally efficient.
IP-192.com writes: Do you want to see Mickey on your iPhone? Both CBS and Walt Disney have shown interest in offering content for Apple’s TV subscription proposal.
Apple plans to launch the service next year, The Wall Street Journal said on Tuesday. Currently, the company is pushing TV networks to sign licensing deals, but it is unclear whether any of them have signed on yet.
CBS is considering offering programs from both the CBS and CW networks, and Disney is doing the same for content from ABC and the Disney Channel, according to the Journal.
An initial bundle of programs from CBS, Disney and other networks would be sold as a “Best of TV” package, and would cost US$30 a month, according to the report.
Apple would pay the content providers $2 to $4 a month per subscriber for a broadcast network like CBS or ABC, and about $1 to $2 a month per subscriber for a basic-cable network, according to the WSJ.
The new video strategy is part of an overhaul the iTunes store. Apple recently acquired online music streaming company Lala, but was secretive about its plans, only saying that it from time to time buys smaller technology companies.
The TV push could also boost sales of Apple’s $229 TV box, which has been struggling compared to other Apple products. Streaming content from services like Hulu or Apple TV could make some cable companies to re-configure their current offerings or rethink their distribution strategy altogether. Link to Original Source
pavs.ma writes: Most of us know that Opera has been at the forefront of Browser innovation for the longest time, yet remains at the bottom of pile when it comes to desktop browser market share. Its a sad story and even the best of us have a hard time figuring out why this is so. But this doesn’t stop Opera from making major innovations and changes with each new release.