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  • TechNest Report | TNR » Posts in 'Featured' category

    Think Verizon Will Do A Better Job With The iPhone? Think Again.

    It seems to be an agreed-upon point of view within the Digirati crowd that AT&T is killing the iPhone. If “killing” is not your bowl of soup, then we can substitute “is highly detrimental,” “the Achilles heel,” or “the main reason I switched to another smartphone.” But aside from the few high-profile and outspoken members of the Digirati community, what real reasons exist to prove that AT&T is really the “dark side” in the relationship? In this article, I dissect the great plethora of FUD, bogus, and unfounded claims about AT&T wireless as it relates to the Apple iPhone. Read more »

    Posted in ATT, Apple, Celluar, De-FUD, Decisions, Featured, iPhone

    Will Google Revamp Google Bookmarks Now That Chrome Does The Sync?

    google-chrome-bookmark-syncThe latest development channel release of Google Chrome contains the ability to sync the browser’s bookmarks. The feature will let you keep the same set of bookmarks on multiple machines as well as store them in your Google Docs. Interestingly enough, Google already has a web-based bookmark service that goes by the name of Google Bookmarks. I wonder whether the plan is to eventually use Google Bookmarks as the back-end sync destination instead of Docs (a much better fit, wouldn’t you say?). If that is the strategy, then it is my opinion that we should get ready for a huge overhaul to the Google Bookmarks service. Read more »

    Posted in Bookmarks, Chrome, Cloud Computing, Featured, Google, Strategy

    Jailbreak Or Jailbreak Not, There Is No Try

    jailbreak-jailbreak-not-try

    As a member of the geek community, I tend to get asked a lot of tech questions. As soon as people see the screen on my iPhone, the first question I get is “Wow! How did you do that?” I have non-standard icons, an awesome unlock screen, and the ability to answer texts without unlocking the phone. Should you jailbreak? What is jailbreaking? Let’s look at the advantages and disadvantages of each. Read more »

    Posted in App Store, Apple, Decisions, Featured, Jailbreak, iPhone

    Microsoft Office In The Cloud: The Strategy Behind It All

    office-2010-web-appsBack in 2008, Microsoft announced Office Web Applications – the web-based version of its ever-popular productivity suite – Microsoft Office. We’ve come across more details recently, with the beta release of Office 2010: the online suite will be made up of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote, will be capable of synchronizing with the desktop, will be platform and browser-independent, but will contain less features than the desktop versions of those programs. That should not be an issue, however, since most Office users use very few features in Office.

    The suite will be available to everyone for free via Windows Live and to corporate users through different distribution channels. Since the announcement, such questions as “How would this affect Google Docs/Apps and the Zoho office suite?” have been widely discussed topics. Let’s take a pragmatic look at what we should really expect from Office Web Applications. Read more »

    Posted in Apps, Business, Decisions, Featured, Microsoft, Office, Software, Synchronization, Web apps

    Eric Schmidt Resigns From Apple Board Of Directors: Let The Games Begin!

    iphone-google-eric-shmidtThis was to be expected: Google CEO Eric Schmidt has resigned from Apple’s board today, citing a conflict of interest. Apple CEO Steve Jobs said that “Unfortunately, as Google enters more of Apple’s core businesses, with Android and now Chrome OS, Eric’s effectiveness as an Apple board member will be significantly diminished, since he will have to recuse himself from even larger portions of our meetings due to potential conflicts of interest.”

    For quite some time, Apple and Google have been serving the same markets:

    • Web-based email, calendaring, and contact lists: Apple’s MobileMe and Google’s Gmail/Calendar/Contacts
    • Cellular phones: Apple’s iPhone and Google’s Android
    • Browsers: Apple Safari, Google Chrome
    • Productivity applications: Apple’s iWork online and Google’s Docs
    • Most recently, Google has announced that it will enter the desktop OS space with Chrome OS, which would compete head-on with the Mac OS

    When initial whispers regarding the effectiveness of Mr. Schmidt on Apple’s board began to spread, many analysts pointed out that even though the two companies compete in many spaces, they have different business models for the aforementioned products: Apple charges a premium price while Google either gives its products and services away for free or doesn’t charge an OEM a fee for a license (in the case of Android and Chrome OS). As I’ve stated on our daily bit podcast before, this argument holds no merit: different business models or not, most consumers will end up purchasing only one of the above products/services – either an iPhone or a Google Android-based device. That is, unless the consumer has unlimited amounts of resources (read: money) – in which case the simple rules of economics no longer apply. The same goes for the rest of the markets in which the two companies have overlapping products/services. Now that any conflicts of interest are out of the way, I see the two companies becoming more competitive, especially in the following areas:

    • Mobility: enhanced multitouch support on Google Android-based devices should more closely compete with the iPhone
    • Productivity: Apple’s iWork online suite being made available as a standalone product to directly compete with Google Docs
    • Operating Systems: Google’s Chrome OS not withholding any punches versus Mac OS X

    Yet one has to wonder what words were exchanged between Jobs and Schmidt when Apple booted all Google Voice-related apps from its App Store last week. Would that alone have been a reason for Schmidt to step down as Apple board member? Most likely, not. But it must have played a role in his overall decision. Full press release after the break, if you’re interested:  Read more »

    Posted in Apple, Business, Decisions, Eric Schmidt, Ethics, Featured, Google, Industry News, People, Steve Jobs

    Cutting The Cord: What Apple Will Really Do With Its $1 Billion Server Farm

    ipod-macbook-sync-scissors

    Earlier in May, word got out that Apple is planning to invest $1 billion in a server farm. The facility, to be located in the State of North Carolina, will follow a similar (albeit smaller) $600 million undertaking by Google. As could be expected, analysts, bloggers, and the Twitterverse the world over speculated about the possible uses for the investment, but I don’t think anyone hit the nail squarely on the head. I think Apple will use its new server farm to completely cut the cord between its iPhone product line and the desktop. And it will do so in a big way. Read more »

    Posted in Apple, Cloud Computing, Featured, Mac, MobileMe, Speculation, Synchronization, iPhone, iTunes

    Is YouTube On The iPhone A Monopoly?

    Monopoly YouTube Apple iPhoneEver since its initial release in 2007, the iPhone – along with its sibling, the iPod Touch – have shipped with a YouTube app. The sole reason for this app’s existence is because the iPhone isn’t capable of displaying Flash content. That much we already know. Yet with such prominent support for YouTube, I’m surprised that competing video sharing sites aren’t protesting with the words “monopoly, monopoly, monopoly.” Yes, I believe that Apple and YouTube‘s parent company, Google, are behaving in a monopolistic fashion when it comes to video on the iPhone.

    Flash – the background

    Lets set some facts straight first: Flash is the format used to stream video content and display hyper-dynamic websites, among other things. Used by YouTube, Vimeo, Mevio, Hulu, Cnet, Ustream, Justin.TV, and countless other video websites, Flash is the most prevalent video delivery method on the web by a far cry. The only exception to the previous examples is Apple: it uses the beloved H.264 standard to deliver videos on its own website. But what’s important to note here is that Adobe has been trying, time in time again, to get Flash on the iPhone, all to no avail: Apple has had multiple excuses as to why Flash on the iPhone can’t be a reality. The company has cited battery life and a lack in processing power as the two major items that prevent Flash from being available on the device.

    Competing mobile operating systems such as Nokia’s Symbian OS, Google’s Android, Microsoft’s Windows Mobile, and Palm’s WebOS, have all either announced support for, or have already delivered devices that are capable of running the Flash Player. Today, the only Flash hold-outs are the Apple’s iPhone/iPod Touch and RIM’s Blackberry line.  Given these facts, the effects of not being able to play back Flash on the iPhone are quite surprising, and even scary!

    Streaming Video on the iPhone Read more »

    Posted in Apple, Featured, Google, YouTube, iPhone

    iPhone SMS Attack: A Perfect Example Of Apple and AT&T Customer Service FAIL

    duct-tape-mouthThis is a perfect example of what not to do during a time of confusion: stay silent. After news broke yesterday evening that iPhone users are at risk of having their device taken control of by a hacker, the web, radio, newspapers, TV, and the rest of the mainstream media have picked up on the story. iPhone users that aren’t privy to the details of the situation are scared. Being the go-to tech guy for friends, relatives, and clients, I’ve been receiving questions all day asking for advice. I don’t mind answering questions or helping people out; quite the opposite in fact. But what I do find deplorable is that Apple and AT&T are staying completely mum on the situation: there are no official blog posts, email updates, or – ironically – text messages to iPhone owners regarding the current status of the affairs. And that is poor communication, plain and simple.

    Let’s get the basics out of the way: two security researchers – Collin Mulliner and Charlie Miller – have found a serious exploit in the way the iPhone handles SMS messages. If a hacker plays his cards right, he would be able to take complete control of an iPhone by means of sending a text message to the device. Complete control means making phone calls, stealing data, sending text messages without the owner’s consent… you get the idea.

    But it gets worse: Apple was notified about the exploit six weeks ago. And in that time, the company has not issued an update to the iPhone OS. By comparison, the Android OS was also vulnerable to a similar attack. Google fixed the problem within a day or two of being notified of the problem. And all that brings us to the present: this evening, the two researchers who found this bug are presenting their exploit at the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas. Yet the most interesting part of all this is that neither Apple nor AT&T have made any official statements regarding the situation: Read more »

    Posted in ATT, Apple, Business, Customer Service, Featured, Security, iPhone

    Yahoo And Microsoft: The Facts

    MicrohooThis post is a part of the Yahoo! gets Microsoftified series – where we cover the facts, points of view, and details of the Microsoft-Yahoo! deal. To see all posts of the series, click here. More posts are coming soon!

    This morning, Yahoo and Microsoft announced a 10-year search deal that will see the two companies join forces to take on Google. Basically, Microsoft’s technology will power Yahoo’s search results, while Yahoo will be charged with selling ads for both companies’ search sites. Here are the facts:

    Basics:

    • Yahoo is outsourcing search on its web properties to Microsoft
    • Microsoft is providing the technology (Bing), while Yahoo will deliver the worldwide sales force for both companies’ premium search advertisers
    • Ad sales will be handled by Microsoft’s AdCenter sales tool
    • Microsoft is getting the reach (scale) that Yahoo has with its web properties while Yahoo is getting superior technology and the ability to save by not having a dedicated search team
    • The companies will share resources and combine engineering efforts
    • Combined, the two companies make up 30% of the search market, compared to Google – which still controls more than twice that amount
    • The deal is for a time period of 10 years Read more »

    Posted in Bing, Business, Decisions, Featured, Industry News, Microsoft, Search, Yahoo!

    Google Latitude For The iPhone Is Here! iPhone Still Doesn’t Do Background Processes…

    google-latitude-logoLate last week, Google announced that its Latitude location-aware service is now available on the iPhone. Latitude is a location-aware mobile app, similar to services offered by Loopt and brightkite.

    Latitude has been available for Android, Windows Mobile, Blackberry (most models with color screens), and Symbian S60 devices for five months, making the iPhone/iPod Touch the latest mobile device compatible with the service. Unlike on all the other major mobile platforms that have a standalone Latitude app, iPhone users must run the service inside the Safari browser. As such, it has received criticism of being crippled and worthless. Read more »

    Posted in Apple, Decisions, Featured, Industry News, Policy, iPhone
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