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Comment RIM is losing in the Enterprise too (Score 4, Interesting) 197

From basic observation I have seen execs moving from BlackBerry to iPhone & Android because the latter platforms are in fact now both capable of syncing reasonably well with Exchange.

BlackBerry is still a powerful platform for corporate email but they're mostly used for reading - rather than writing - email so the data entry & ergonomy for basic email operations isn't *killer* enough. On top of that new >200 DPI screens on Android & iPhone devices make reading much more pleasant. If you read a lot, then having hardware keys to scroll (I love being able to use space to page down on BB) is great though, but the text resolution is shit.

The thing most have missed so far is that the gadget that is invading the boardroom is the iPad. Meetings where everyone has a slide deck on their own tablet make sense, especially when (if indeed it isn't already out there but has escaped my attention) a collaboration tool allows slick collective annotation on iPad.

Many apps on BlackBerry are pretty awful, and my all-time favourite, viigo, was bought by BlackBerry and then almost instantly killed. It relied on a proxy to format RSS properly and serve it to the terminal, and the proxy never works any more. The new RIM News Reader app isn't available in my country. WTF? It was the only app that allowed RSS + Twitter (multiple accounts) + stocks + weather in one easy place.

Note also that the processing power on smartphones make BlackBerry appear exceptionally slow. RIM are going to lose, unless they bring back something a bit more *killer* in the corporate space. They have some interesting niches though, esp. for teen texting where BlackBerry does come into its own. iPhone text messaging is way sexier though, mostly thanks to the higher DPI.

Comment Re:Not bothered (Score 1) 1162

You're mostly right, but things can look a bit better, notably : better rendering of small detail can be detected as you may move your head forward slightly. Less likely to see blurring and artefacts even if your eyes don't physically distinguish for a _single_ image on your retina, you are watching animated content and so more detail can make a quality difference beyond the physics of your eye (because it's gauged over time and with minor head/eye movement).

Comment French Data Law (Score 2) 433

Sadly, the restrictions in France in eCommerce are wider ranging than even this. Storing credit card information, for example, requires companies to jump through many hoops and prove data is stored in Europe. Many sites steer clear of storing credit card information. Any subscriptions (newsletters, etc) have to be kept in auditable databases and opt-out laws are strong. Sometimes this is a good thing for the end user, but it stifles intelligent lazy login systems and means billing is not as automated as it needs to be. Anti fraud measures such as 3D secure (Verified by Visa, Mastercard Securecode) are crap in France because the banks have all adopted different ways of authenticating their clients in an online payment system (some by a challenge/response via SMS, some via one time pads, some via birthdate, etc).

Obviously legal departments are kept busy, and content publishers or eCommerce merchants end up crippling user experience because they are very likely to take a pessimistic interpretation of all the data privacy laws. So the French do what? The internet illuminati sign up for US/UK English versions of sites, or French canadian sites, whereas the average Joe just things the net is about typing in the same data all the time.

Comment Re:Large organization doing something simple (Score 4, Insightful) 305

Two well identified principles at work here (and the bigger an organisation, the more likely they are to happen, especially without strong leadership)

1. Parkinson's law : basically, work spreads out to fill the time that was earmarked to complete a project
2. Brooks' law : Adding people to a project increases lateness, because the number of communication channels to manage increases as a square of the number of people on a project

Only very sound management and trusting delegation - along with having a reasonably competent project team in the first place - can make things happen quickly.

Comment Re:WTF? No XP support? (Score 1) 378

The overall IE market share is slipping, but a proportion of windows users seem stuck to IE only. Since XP users are effectively stuck at IE8, those that don't already run Firefox or Chrome (or Opera, or Safari...) are not likely to change their ways.

Comment Re:Sony still relevant outside of hackers (Score 1) 317

I think I'm using a more liberal interpretation of what deprecate means, but it doesn't matter - we both mean the same thing - redundant, pointless, once relevant now no longer relevant.

Good point in the irony - though I wonder if their protectionism is driven by agreements with content companies that allowed Sony to defend BluRay in the first place? After all the hardware manufacturers shouldn't care much about how their hardware is used, unless they need help from the big studios etc. to push their hardware formats.

Minidisc was an affordable recordable digital format before CD burners became prevalent. DAT was better though as it was 16 bit, 48KHz. Minidisc was a lossy compressed format, though it wasn't a total flop.

Comment Sony still relevant outside of hackers (Score 3, Informative) 317

For non hacking, Sony do manage to be reasonably relevant. The PS3 and the win for BluRay exorcised some of the ghosts of the Betamax era (and Betamax was a superior technology from a quality point of view). Their midrange consumer equipment is reasonable, and their semi pro stuff still dominates in AV markets and provides a big range of equipment.

That being said, they're no longer dominant in home audio (though they still have reasonable CD players and stuff) since their real flagship - The Walkman - has been deprecated by apple. Home HiFi is not selling as much, the PC is the new media center and there it's Apple all the way for most of my real music-mad friends. Sony have big corporate culture issues, but that's nothing new.

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