bhagwad writes: The "Android One" initiative in India was launched with one purpose — to deliver the latest version of Android quickly to budget smartphones. However, with Lollipop being released way back in June 2014, Android One users still haven't gotten the latest update, whereas other manufacturers like Motorola, Xoom etc have managed to roll it out to their phones. So much for "approved hardware". A couple of days ago, Caesar Sengupta VP product management announced on Google+ that Lollipop would finally be coming to Android One devices. Far from placating the crowd, this announcement seems to have seriously pissed them off. Hell hath no fury like a customer scorned!
But this begs the question — what's the point of Google "approving" certain devices if it takes so long to bring out updates to them? Why are other manufacturers able to beat them to it? And most importantly, why promise fast updates when you're not going to be able to keep that promise?
bhagwad writes: Brazil's IGB Electronica filed for the "iPhone" trademark way back in 2000 and it wanted to retain exclusive rights to the name. Apple didn't like this and filed a lawsuit. The Brazil's Institute of Industry Property (INPI) sided with IGB saying that Apple had no right to use the name "iPhone" since it was already taken. Apple appealed that. In a bizarre ruling today, the appeals court overturned the lower court's ruling saying "all the (Apple) product's renown and client following have been built on its performance and excellence as a product." So that's ok then. No exclusive trademark rights for someone who filed for it eight years before the iPhone was even a product. This begs the question though...why did Apple even take this to court? Shouldn't it just accept that someone else trademarked the name and move on?
bhagwad writes: "The patent that was the cause of so much grief to Samsung in the recently concluded trial with Apple has been tentatively invalidated by the USPTO. The challenge was filed anonymously, but it obviously could have been filed by any smartphone manufacturer. Will this have an effect on further proceedings in the case or perhaps more importantly on the inevitable appeal?"
bhagwad writes: "In the US, telecom carriers are trying their best to hold on to depleting voice revenues. Over in India, the telecom minister urged carriers to stop charging for voice calls and derive all their revenues only from data plans. Is this kind of model sustainable, where voice becomes an outmoded and free technology and carriers turn entirely into dumb pipes who have no control over what passes over them? This is a step forward and hopefully will make Internet service more like a utility."
bhagwad writes: "An Apple store in North Pointe Mall refused to sell an iPad to a US citizen speaking Farsi. Apparently this isn't the first time this has happened. The reason according to the store employee is that the US has a trade embargo with Iran and so they're not allowed to take stuff like this to that country. But merely speaking a language is not proof that they live in Iran. Neither is it Apple's job to do this kind of policing at retail stores. The exact words used by the employee were: "I just can't sell this to you. Our countries have bad relations""
bhagwad writes: "It seems strange, but Facebook's page of unsupported browsers doesn't include Google Chrome as a recommended option! Given that Chrome is now one of the most popular browsers on the planet, what on earth could be the reasons for this?"
bhagwad writes: "Apparently Robert Scoble tried to post a long comment on Facebook only to have a message pop up saying "This comment seems irrelevant or inappropriate and can't be posted. To avoid having your comments blocked, please make sure they contribute to the post in a positive way". If true, this is huge. For one the self moderating system of comments has always been the rule so far. And with countries like India rooting for the pre screening of content and comments, is Facebook thinking of caving into these demands?"
bhagwad writes: "When a statue in Mumbai began to "miraculously" drip tears, huge crowds began to gather, pray, and collect the water in vials. Sanal Edamaruku has exposed such bogus miracles before, and when he was called in, his investigations showed that it was nothing more than a nearby drainage. The entire investigation was caught on tape. The priests were outraged and demanded an apology. When he refused, a case of "blasphemy" was registered at the police station who now want to have him arrested. Incidents like this show that India has freedom of expression only in name. In reality, it's more like Pakistan where religious thugs can keep controversial people under control in the name of their "offended sentiments"."
bhagwad writes: "Turns out that Apple's latest iBooks authoring tool has an insidious clause. Any works that you produce using it can only be sold via the iBookstore. So even if I spent years writing the book elsewhere, Apple has a claim over it if I package it using iBooks. Kind of like the free Eclipse IDE claiming that any program you create using it has to give them 30% of the proceeds! Sure, you can put anything in an EULA, but this really is the heights."
bhagwad writes: "We recently found out that GoDaddy was one of the companies supporting the SOPA legislation. Since then, there has been a call to move domains off GoDaddy with Dec. 29th being the "Move Your Domain Away From GoDaddy Day". Will Slashdotters take up the call?"
bhagwad writes: "India seems to like Chrome even more than the rest of the world does. While Chrome is a distant second to all the IE browsers elsewhere, it's already overtaken all the versions put together in the world's largest democracy — perhaps because of the younger demographic."
bhagwad writes: "The EU continues to ooze common sense as a court insists that software functions themselves cannot be copyrighted. Drawing a box or moving cursor are examples. To quote: "If it were accepted that a functionality of a computer program can be protected as such, that would amount to making it possible to monopolize ideas, to the detriment of technological progress and industrial development,""
bhagwad writes: "In another case of patent madness, Apple now has exclusive rights to the ubiquitous "slide to unlock" feature found on a huge number of smartphones. Should Apple have been able to patent this in the first place, and what will happen now?"
bhagwad writes: "A senior Indian bureaucrat has strange views on technology. He thinks "cloud technology" involves actual clouds and that SIM card information seeps into batteries. Are any US politicians this ignorant about technology? And if so, should there be a basic test before they're allowed to take important decisions?"