Google Aims to Take On Apple Devices with Android Updates

Google will introduce new features to its Android mobile operating system to help its Nexus devices better compete with Apple’s iPhones and iPads. At the Code Conference yesterday, Google CEO Sundar Pichai said the company plans to “put a lot more thought” into the Nexus line, and would likely customize Android in the process. Google licenses Android to a wide array of handset makers, which results in a variety of phones, software and apps that work differently. “These fragmentation issues mean Android phones are often harder to use and sometimes less capable than iPhones,” reports Bloomberg. The Nexus line is designed to address this problem. “Creating a new version of Android just for Nexus devices would give Google more control.” Continue reading Google Aims to Take On Apple Devices with Android Updates

European Officials Accuse Google of Breaking Antitrust Rules

European officials have charged Google with violating competition rules by favoring Android over rival mobile software. Europe’s competition chief Margrethe Vestager accused the tech giant of unfairly promoting its own mobile search and Chrome browser with phone makers. “We believe that Google’s behavior denies consumers a wider choice of mobile apps and services and stands in the way of innovation by other players,” said Vestager. From Brussels, the European Commission issued a release stating that Google has “abused its dominant position by imposing restrictions on Android device manufacturers and mobile network operators.” Continue reading European Officials Accuse Google of Breaking Antitrust Rules

Facial Monitoring Software Could Impact Your TV Experience

TV technology is getting closer to monitoring and analyzing our facial expressions in order to distinguish between boredom and enthusiasm to better understand our viewing tastes. Software from media startup Affectiva could usher in a new frontier in television viewing, one in which our devices watch our reactions and offer content suggestions or enable brands to provide more targeted ads. If consumers are willing to allow their emotional data to be gathered, movie and TV show recommendations from Netflix, for example, could become more relevant. Continue reading Facial Monitoring Software Could Impact Your TV Experience

Security Experts Remotely Control Jeep’s Steering and Braking

Security researchers Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek were able to hack into a Jeep on the highway and remotely control its radio, windshield wipers, navigation system and, finally, the brakes and steering. Miller and Valasek have been working for the last two years to hack various cars, with the aim of controlling them remotely. Their ability to hack the Jeep highlights one of the potential dangers inherent in the Internet of Things, as an increasing number of interconnected devices hit the market. Continue reading Security Experts Remotely Control Jeep’s Steering and Braking

Apple Takes a Dramatic Lead in Smartphone Industry’s Profits

Despite selling less than 20 percent of smartphones in terms of unit sales, Apple recorded 92 percent of the total operating income of smartphone sales for Q1, up from 65 percent last year. Apple and Samsung lead the industry while other phone makers broke even or lost money, according to Canaccord Genuity research. Apple has recorded such a significant lead because of higher prices per unit. This has forced rival brands, that mostly run on the Android operating system, to compete by cutting prices. Continue reading Apple Takes a Dramatic Lead in Smartphone Industry’s Profits

Corning Designs Scratch-Resistant Gorilla Glass-Like Material

Glass manufacturer Corning is developing a new material with the durability of Gorilla Glass and the scratch-resistance of sapphire. The company’s Gorilla Glass is featured on Apple’s iPhone and Samsung’s Galaxy smartphones. Last year however, Apple almost severed ties with Corning because it wanted to start using material that did not scratch as easily. When Apple’s plan fell through, Corning launched Project Phire with the goal of developing an extremely sturdy and scratch-resistant glass for CE devices. Continue reading Corning Designs Scratch-Resistant Gorilla Glass-Like Material

New California Law to Require ‘Kill Switch’ on Smartphones

Starting in July of next year, all smartphones sold in California must have a “kill switch,” a software feature that allows smartphone owners to disable a phone after it has been stolen. The “kill switch” will make it more difficult for thieves to resell stolen phones because the phone can only be reactivated with the owner’s correct password. Smartphone manufacturers will be required to ship these phones with the anti-theft technology activated as part of the default settings. Continue reading New California Law to Require ‘Kill Switch’ on Smartphones

Report: Ultra HD TV Shipments to Grow 160 Percent by 2017

Digitimes Research projects that global Ultra HD television shipments will experience a compound annual growth rate of 160 percent from 2013 to 2017, jumping from 1.5 million units to 68.2 million. The report estimates that 26.6 percent of all TVs shipped in 2017 will be Ultra HD, and more than 90 percent of LCD TVs will offer UHD resolution or higher. In addition, Digitimes anticipates that Blu-ray support for UHD and increased user-generated content will help push demand. Continue reading Report: Ultra HD TV Shipments to Grow 160 Percent by 2017

Google Develops Low-Cost Smartphones for Developing World

Google engineers have been hard at work designing cost-conscious hardware for other companies to manufacture. This fall, Google will release a sub-$100 smartphone in India, to be followed by other countries with emerging economies. The Android One device is created by the Indian manufacturer MicroMax, and is meant to serve those who currently lack Internet access. Karbonn and Spice, two other Indian manufacturers, plan to release similar Android One devices this fall.  Continue reading Google Develops Low-Cost Smartphones for Developing World

Will Consumers See Any Real Need for a Curved TV Display?

Curved TVs were a hot topic at this year’s CES, and many of them were promoted as giving a “3D-like” effect — more theatrical and cinematic. But some analysts are questioning whether there is a need for a curved display. “3D-like” may not serve as an accurate description of the experience for average viewers. Some say it even alters the experience in a way a director might not intend, as the effect could easily be achieved by a special camera lens instead. Continue reading Will Consumers See Any Real Need for a Curved TV Display?

PC Plus Running Windows and Android To Be Revealed at CES

New Windows personal computers will be introduced at CES next week. One called “PC Plus” will run both Windows 8.1 and Android mobile apps according to Creative Strategies’ Tim Bajarin, who says the initiative would be backed by Intel. PC Plus will be revealed by multiple original equipment manufacturers in a move many say should “scare” Microsoft. The PC market has seen a decline in the past two years, inspiring risks like this by OEMs. Continue reading PC Plus Running Windows and Android To Be Revealed at CES

Netflix to Reveal 4K Streaming Details at Next Month’s CES

Netflix is making a push for Ultra HD resolution streaming and promises to reveal details on its plans for 4K at next month’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Neil Hunt, the streaming service’s chief product officer indicated Netflix has deals to offer 4K streaming with embedded players on certain UHD TVs (manufacturers will also be announced at CES). The second season of Netflix’s original series “House of Cards” will be the first to stream in 4K in 2014. Continue reading Netflix to Reveal 4K Streaming Details at Next Month’s CES

AllSeen Alliance Group Formed to Enable Internet of Things

Major tech companies have joined together to form the AllSeen Alliance group with the common goal of enabling the Internet of Things (IoT), also known as the Internet of Everything (IoE). Consortium members include Qualcomm, LG Electronics, Cisco, Panasonic, Sharp, Silicon Image, D-Link and Haier. The nonprofit Linux Foundation made the announcement of the group, which plans to use Qualcomm technology to connect appliances and gadgets to the Internet. Continue reading AllSeen Alliance Group Formed to Enable Internet of Things

Facebook’s New Open Compute Project to Compete with Cisco

Facebook, along with Intel, Broadcom and others, revealed the first steps toward developing an open switch that will rival Cisco’s network hardware. The social networking site’s Open Compute Project (OCP) was announced six months ago, and now it’s making progress toward its goal by receiving switch specifications from its consortium members. The OCP plans to release a specification and reference box for an “open, OS-agnostic top-of-rack switch.” Continue reading Facebook’s New Open Compute Project to Compete with Cisco

Page 2 of 212