On Monday, a leaked video appeared showing The All New HTC One in all its dual-camera, metal unibody, BoomSound-equipped glory. However, the leaker made a grievous error while showing off HTC’s new flagship phone: He left the International Mobile Station Equipment Identity (IMEI) number and his own on-screen email address exposed long enough for HTC to identify them and now HTC is going after him with guns blazing. More →
Microsoft has a problem: It desperately wants any remaining Windows XP users to upgrade to a newer version of the operating system but a huge chunk of them still haven’t budged. The latest numbers from NetMarketShare show that Windows XP still accounts for around 29.5% of all desktops in use even though Microsoft is due to end support for the 13-year-old platform on April 8th. ZDNet reports that Microsoft plans to pester remaining XP holdovers starting next week by sending them pop-up notifications reminding them — again — that it will end XP support within a month. More →
Has Microsoft’s Scroogled ad campaign convinced you to switch to Bing yet? Probably not but that isn’t going to stop Microsoft from unleashing similar anti-Google ads in the future, especially now that it’s appointed one-time political consultant Mark Penn to be its chief strategy officer. Penn, who masterminded Microsoft’s not-exactly-successful Scroogled campaign, will be new CEO Satya Nadella’s point man for strategic decisions at Microsoft that will include “input in the area of competitive research and analysis.” In his letter announcing the new appointment, Nadella said that Penn will use his “unique skill set across a broader set of challenges facing the company, from new product ideas to helping shape the overall areas of strategic investment.” Before working on the not-quite-successful Scroogled campaign, Penn was best known for his work on the not-quite-successful political campaign to get Hillary Clinton elected president in 2008.
Both the PlaySation 4 and the Xbox One have been hits but now we have enough data to declare a clear winner in the early rounds: It’s the PlayStation 4. GameSpot has written a very thorough post outlining why the PS4 has outsold the Xbox One ever since its launch late last year while also noting that Sony’s console has some distinct advantages over Microsoft’s going forward that could help it win for years to come. More →
The trouble with making a new smartphone stand out based on specifications such as pixels per inch is that by now most new devices have pixel densities that are so high that most users can’t really tell the difference between them with the naked eye. Thus, it’s natural for many smartphone enthusiasts to look toward the size of a display’s color gamut, which determines how many different colors you’ll be able to see on your device. However, AnandTech makes a very compelling case that big color gamuts aren’t all they’re cracked up to be either because they don’t tell you anything about how accurate a display’s colors really are. More →
The next time the deposed prince of Nigeria has a massive inheritance to send you, will he offer to give it to you in Bitcoins? Cornell associate computer science professor Emin Gün Sirer has written a lengthy post that details why we shouldn’t believe bankrupt Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox’s official explanations for how it lost nearly $500 million worth of Bitcoins. Essentially, Sirer just doesn’t think incompetence alone can’t explain such a stunning loss and alleges that there had to have been at least one person working within Mt. Gox who was either masterminding or aiding and abetting the theft. More →
Samsung’s Galaxy S5 is less than 6 weeks away from its release but Samsung is apparently still having problems producing enough fingerprint scanners to meet expected demand. PhoneArena draws our attention to a new report from Korean publication Daum claiming that Samsung has had so much trouble making fingerprint scanners that it’s hired third-party manufacturer Circletec to pitch in. PhoneArena notes that “Circletec is the largest manufacturer of mobile Optical Track Pads and produces a line of fingerprint scanners,” so the company certainly sounds like a good candidate for Samsung to use if it needs a lot of fingerprint scanners quickly. It goes without saying that not having enough fingerprint scanners would pose a wee bit of a problem for Samsung, especially since it plans on launching the Galaxy S5 in 150 countries on April 11th.
Comcast and Time Warner Cable have never been beloved but the two companies’ recent decision to merge has made them disliked even more. YouGov’s BrandIndex has found that perceptions of both Comcast and Time Warner Cable have tanked even further following their merger announcement as more consumers are seemingly worried that the newly merged company will use its clout to jack up prices even more. In terms of perceived quality and whether consumers would recommend their services to others, Comcast and Time Warner Cable are now well below any other major cable provider in the United States. More →
For a long time, the iPad ruled as the tablet market’s unquestioned champion as many Android-based tablets — anyone remember the Motorola Xoom? — failed to compete in terms of either quality or pricing. However, new data from Gartner shows that Samsung has helped make Android the world’s top tablet OS much in the same way it helped cement Android’s dominance of the global smartphone market. More →
So, you think the merger between Comcast and Time Warner Cable is a horrible idea. You aren’t alone. However, what you think matters very little because Comcast has deployed an army of lobbyists on Capitol Hill to do its bidding and make sure its proposed TWC merger will sail through with as little resistance as possible. More →
It looks like Apple is getting serious about releasing more products every year. The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple has been hiring engineers from HTC and other Taiwanese tech companies that will help the company work more closely with Asian suppliers so it can churn out new iPhone and iPad models more frequently. The Journal says that Apple has come under increased pressure to produce “faster and more frequent product launches” now that the average product cycle length has shortened significantly over the past couple of years. More →
Microsoft didn’t make a lot of waves at Mobile World Congress this week but TechCrunch has spotted a little-reported detail from its MWC presentation that shows how Microsoft’s Windows Store has made some very strong gains over just the past six months. At MWC this week Microsoft said that Windows Store is now serving 4 million app downloads a day, which TechCrunch estimates is a 135% increase from the 1.7 million daily downloads it averaged this past October. This is extremely impressive growth, especially when you consider that Apple’s App Store last year was averaging daily download volumes in the 5.5 million to 6 million range. If Windows Store’s numbers keep growing like they have been then Microsoft should have much less trouble getting app developers to sign onto its platforms going forward.
Who would thought that a former online Magic Card market wouldn’t be a safe place to invest your money? The Wall Street Journal reports that Mt. Gox, which until last week had been the world’s largest Bitcoin exchange, has filed for bankruptcy. Mt. Gox admitted on Friday that it had lost around 750,000 of its customers’ Bitcoins along with 100,000 of its own Bitcoins, which the Journal estimates all have a combined worth of $473 million. More →