The Fair Labor Association has uncovered a number of issues that need to be addressed at a Foxconn’s Shenzhen factory, reports Bloomberg. “We’re finding tons of issues,” FLA chief executive officer Auret van Heerden said after a multi-day inspection of the plant. “I believe we’re going to see some very significant announcements in the near future.” On Wednesday, however, the FLA’s preliminary assessment stated that the company’s plants had conditions that were better than most. “The facilities are first-class; the physical conditions are way, way above average of the norm,” van Heerden previously said. “I was very surprised when I walked onto the floor at Foxconn, how tranquil it is compared with a garment factory. So the problems are not the intensity and burnout and pressure-cooker environment you have in a garment factory. It’s more a function of monotony, of boredom, of alienation perhaps.” The FLA plans to release more information regarding its inspection in the coming weeks. More →
Our inbox is littered with tips from frustrated Netflix users attempting to stream videos from the site’s service. Reports state that Netflix’s Instant service, in all its forms, has been down for the last several hours. If you were planning to have a nice evening in with your main-squeeze and a slightly dated movie, this certainly would put a damper on those plans. Anyone out there experiencing this?
It’s not the update you’ve been waiting for, rather it’s the update the will allow you to get the update you’ve been waiting for. Of course we’re talking about Windows Phone 7, and the small, quirky code bundle Microsoft has been attempting to rollout for the past two weeks. After halting the update to Samsung handsets back on February 23rd, the company resumed sending the software to users’ devices this week. And unfortunately, it looks like Windows Phone users with Samsung handsets are continuing to have issues — problems Microsoft admits via Twitter it is “aware of” and is “looking into.” The small package being pushed by Microsoft patches Windows Phone’s updater mechanism, preparing it for the more significant NoDo update that is set to bring copy and paste functionality, amongst other things, to WP7 later this month. Not the most impressive software rollout we’ve ever seen, but hopefully Microsoft and friends have this whole mess sorted out by the time NoDo is a gogo. More →
Yesterday, we told you about an issue being experience by Samsung Windows Phone owners that was causing a recently released update to fail — or in the worst cases render a handset unusable. Late last night, Microsoft took to the web to explain exactly what it’s discovered about the missteps of its first Windows Phone update.
“90 percent of people who’ve received an update notification have installed the new software patch successfully,” writes Microsoft’s Michael Stroh. “Of the 10 percent who did experience a problem, nearly half failed for two basic reasons—a bad Internet connection or insufficient computer storage space.”
Mr. Stroh goes on to concede that the update has not gone perfectly, and that a “technical issue” with the update process “impacts a small number” of Samsung devices. But he reinforces that Microsoft is “committed to learning from our first update and improving the process.”
The article concludes with a handful of frequently asked questions. If you want to know more about the Redmond company’s first Windows Phone update, hit the read link and have a look for yourself. More →
According to Kaufman Brothers analyst Shaw Wu, RIM may be forced to delay the release of its first tablet computer, the BlackBerry PlayBook. Wu claims he is hearing that the PlayBook “needs to improve its relatively poor battery life of a few hours compared to 6 hours for the Samsung Galaxy Tab and 10 hours for [Apple’s] iPad.” As a result, Wu writes, the launch of the BlackBerry PlayBook may be delayed until May, 2011. Wu notes that the cause of the battery issues may stem from the fact that QNX, the PlayBook’s operating system, was designed for use in scenarios where battery life is not an issue — such as in automobiles. RIM Co-CEO Jim Balsillie stated last month that the PlayBook would launch in the first quarter of 2011, with a price tag under $500.
We ran an exhaustive video preview of the BlackBerry PlayBook earlier this month, and called the PlayBook experience as it stands now “fluid, quick, and downright impressive.” With Apple’s iPad 2 and several Android tablets set to launch over the course of the first quarter, however, sales of the BlackBerry PlayBook could be negatively impacted should RIM be forced to delay the tablet’s launch until the second quarter. More →
To be honest, we haven’t heard all that much complaining from DROID X users running Android 2.2, but apparently Motorola has. In a forum post, Motorola listed several issues being experienced and reported by DROID X users who have upgraded their devices to Android 2.2. The list includes: stuck on Motorola logo after boot, random rebooting, Wi-Fi connection stability, Battery Manager “Force Close” error, media not playing, and music files cutting out early. Hit the jump for the full explanation and let us know if you’re seeing any of these issues. More →
A quick note on Sprint’s support site indicates that the HTC EVO 4G will be getting a small software update sometime in the near future. The update lists “calendar event edit issues” and “multiple Gmail account sync” as the two problems it is designed to address. The version number is also listed at 3.29.651.5. You can check for the update by navigating to Settings > System Updates > HTC software update on your EVO 4G. More →
According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple, Inc. is looking into reports that the performance of iOS 4, on the iPhone 3G, is sub-par. The most common gripes are that the two-year old handset is “sluggish” and “burns through a charge” very quickly after the update is installed. Anyone out there experiencing this? More →
One of our readers has a pretty interesting story to share. It is one that involves his passion for Apple products, an Apple engineer, Steve Jobs, and reported problems with the iPhone 4’s antenna placement. Let’s call the person talking to Apple and Steve Jobs “Tom”… Tom recorded a video which he posted on YouTube. That video demonstrated the iPhone 4’s now well known issue of signal degration when being held mostly on the left lower side of the phone. Apparently, Apple noticed the video, and reached out directly to Tom. While talking with Apple, Tom was informed that Apple doesn’t consider this an issue, and that anything online is just “rumor hysteria”. Apple also asked Tom not to post further videos.
Tom followed up by emailing the Apple engineer and Steve Jobs directly. Below is the email thread broken down. We have verified the email headers and information, and believe this exchange to be 100% legitimate.
We’ve been hearing grumblings on the intertubes about the newly minted Nexus One having 3G connectivity problems with T-Mobile’s network. Users have been reporting that the Nexus is constantly bouncing between 3G and EDGE, even in a 3G saturated area, or, in some of the more severe cases, not connecting to the 3G network even when it is available. A moderator on T-Mobile’s forums states, “Google and T-Mobile are investigating this issue and hope to have more information for you soon. We understand your concern and appreciate your patience.” Let’s hope this is a minor coding snafu and can be resolved quickly by a software patch. Any early adopters of the “Sexy Nexy” seeing 3G issues?
We gave you our iPhone list, and while this probably has many more minor annoyances than actual feature omissions, we still thought it would be fun to put a list of our gripes together. Some of these might be device-specific, but you’ll get a general feel for the direction we’re going and why these things piss us off to no end.
1. The ridiculous limit on file sizes when downloading from the browser. Look, if I want to download a friggin’ video file, let me.
2. Attachments are pretty bad and it has to do with RIM’s ever-so-sneaky compression. We’ve heard that when data is sent over their network, it literally can take a 100kb file and compress it to around 7kb. (A carrier’s dream). Just let us get the entire file without having to constantly wait for it to render when we zoom it, etc.
3. Specifically speaking for the Bold, the “R” shortcut key no longer takes you to the Alarm. This pains me.
4. Actually, about shortcuts… for a product that excels on making your life easier and offering up a ton of user-customization, there is no reason we shouldn’t be able to program our own shortcut keys. If I want the letter “B” to take me to the Memo Pad, then let me do it damn it. I’m tired of being stuck at the mercy of RIM’s shortcut key assignment. They make no sense and they are hardly integrated in 3rd party applications.
5. When you get a pop-up menu, there are no boundaries to where you can scroll. Let’s use one of the Application Permissions screens. Why am I allowed to scroll above “Yes” and below “No”? There are only two options yet it seems as if you could scroll to China before selecting one of them.
Look, we love our iPhones as much as the person, but at this late point in the game, there are some things that are just inexcusable. Here’s our top 10 things we hate about the iPhone, and we’ll post up our top 10 things we hate about the Bold later on. Feel free to chime in with your own! Also note that we’re talking about the iPhone in its default state, not a jailbreaked unit. Here’s our list in no particular order:
1. You can’t use custom sounds for email notifications, SMS, etc.
2. Copy and paste. Sorry, but it’s ridiculous at this point.
3. When forwarding an email with an attachment, the iPhone sends it out locally. That means if you have a 1MB attachment, you have to send 1MB worth of data when forwarding. This doesn’t happen on Windows Mobile or the BlackBerry — it’s sent from the server. Not cool.
4. No unified inbox. At this point, there’s no reason you should have to go through the rigmarole of switching through tabs and endless menus to get to another email inbox. Cut this down, give us color-coded emails that correspond with that particular account — something!
5. Video recording. Again, it’s technically possible, but we don’t have it.