Mozilla becomes the first Silicon Valley heavyweight to oppose CISPA

By on May 2, 2012 at 5:30 PM.

Mozilla becomes the first Silicon Valley heavyweight to oppose CISPA

Mozilla speaks out against CISPA

Thousands of people oppose the controversial Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), including the Obama Administration and “Anonymous.” The bill, which was recently passed by the United States House of Representatives, looks to give businesses and the federal government legal protection to share cyber threats with one another in an effort to prevent online attacks. Internet privacy and neutrality advocates feel as if the bill does not contain enough limits on how and when private information can be monitored. Numerous technology companies — such as Microsoft, Apple, Facebook, IBM, Intel and Oracle — have voiced their support for the bill. Mozilla on Tuesday, however, took a stand and announced its opposition against CISPA. More →

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Windows Vista enters extended support, XP support ends in 2014

By on April 10, 2012 at 2:50 PM.

Windows Vista enters extended support, XP support ends in 2014

Microsoft products fit into two different life cycle stages — mainstream support and extended support. With mainstream support, users receive free security updates, stability improvements, bug fixes and occasional new features. In the extended support phase, security updates are available for free but other fixes require paid support. Microsoft reminded Windows XP users earlier this week that XP is now in the extended phase, and it said support for the operating system and Office 2003 will be officially discontinued by April 2014. Mainstream support for Windows Vista has also officially ended as of Tuesday, along with support for Office 2007. Both Windows Vista and Office 2007 will be in the extended support phase from now until April 2017. Microsoft recommends that users with PCs running Windows XP and Office 2003 should migrate to Windows 7 and Office 2010 before support is completely cut off and systems are left vulnerable to new forms of malware. More →

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Microsoft: Zune is not dead… yet

By on October 6, 2011 at 11:50 PM.

Microsoft: Zune is not dead… yet

Dead or alive? Reports surfaced on Monday suggesting that Microsoft had pulled the plug on its Zune media player, but those were quickly written off as a mistake. On Tuesday, Microsoft did pull the plug and and said in an official death certificate that Windows Phone would be the “focus of [its] video and music strategy moving forward.” However, as of Wednesday, Microsoft’s support team suggests the statements published yesterday were in error as well, and the original statements have since been pulled. “We are still supporting the Zune HD hardware,” Microsoft posted on Twitter. “No official info has been released stating hardware is being discontinued.” Official information was posted, however, and it is likely that this is just a case of one arm not talking to the other. More →

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Verizon goes to bat for AT&T, defends T-Mobile merger

By on September 22, 2011 at 8:10 AM.

Verizon goes to bat for AT&T, defends T-Mobile merger

Verizon Communications chief executive Lowell McAdam has gone on record in suggesting that the company’s biggest rival, AT&T, should be allowed to complete its proposed $39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile USA. “That match had to occur,” McAdam said at an investor conference on Wednesday, warning that the government has no choice but to allow such mergers unless it can focus on getting telcos the increased spectrum they need to operate. He continued, “We need to be very thoughtful on what the impacts would be to the overall industry if this is a way to regulate the industry without actually passing regulation.” Read on for more. More →

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Netflix app now supports all Android Froyo/Gingerbread devices

By on September 9, 2011 at 5:15 PM.

Netflix app now supports all Android Froyo/Gingerbread devices

Netflix updated its Android application on Friday with support for any smartphone running Android 2.2 (Froyo) or Android 2.3 (Gingerbread). Netflix launched an Android app in May of this year, but it initially only supported a handful of high-end devices. Netflix slowly added support for a few more devices over the past couple of months, but anxious users were turning to leaked .APK files to try to get the service up and running on unsupported devices. Now, thankfully, getting the app on your Android phone won’t involve any tweaks. Netflix users should be sure to check the Android Market for the update if you have any long travel plans this weekend. More →

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Adobe finally brings Flash to iPhone and iPad

By on September 9, 2011 at 12:46 PM.

Adobe finally brings Flash to iPhone and iPad

Adobe brings Flash to iPhone, iPad

During the IBC trade show in Amsterdam on Friday, Adobe officially took the wraps off of its new Adobe Flash Media Server 4.5 which will allow iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users to access Adobe Flash content. Apple, which has long rejected Adobe’s Flash technology, doesn’t need to approve the tech for it to work, either. “With Adobe Flash Media Server 4.5, media publishers now have a single, simple workflow for delivering content using the same stream to Flash-enabled devices or to the Apple iPhone and iPad,” Adobe said in a statement. Flash Media Server 4.5 allows publishers to create HTTP content and push the same content to iOS devices that it does to Flash-enabled devices in a single stream. Instead of relying on a device’s processor to render the stream, which often degrades battery life and slows a device down, Adobe’s Flash Media Server 4.5 does all the legwork. Adobe Flash Media Server is available immediately to publishers for $4,500. Read on for the full press release. More →

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HTC: Relationship with Google not affected by Motorola acquisition

By on August 15, 2011 at 11:45 AM.

HTC: Relationship with Google not affected by Motorola acquisition

It may seem that Google’s other Android partners would be upset by the search giant’s decision to acquire Motorola for $12.5 billion but that’s apparently not the case. Execs from HTC, LG, Samsung and Sony Ericsson spoke in support of the purchase earlier on Monday, and now HTC has issued a second statement on the deal. “We are supportive of Google’s acquisition of Motorola Mobility as this is a positive development to the Android ecosystem, which we believe is beneficial to HTC’s promotion of Android phones,” an HTC spokesperson told BGR on Monday. “The partnership between HTC and Google remains strong and will not be affected by this acquisition.” HTC’s CEO Peter Chou said his company welcomes the acquisition and noted Google’s commitment to defending Android, its partners and the entire ecosystem. Google’s CEO Larry Page said that the acquisition will allow Google to “better protect Android from anti-competitive threats from Microsoft, Apple and other companies.”

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Google+ now available for iPad, iPod touch

By on August 9, 2011 at 12:30 AM.

Google+ now available for iPad, iPod touch

Google updated its Google+ iOS application on Monday with support for the iPod touch and the iPad. The search giant initially launched Google+ on Android and followed-up a few weeks later with an iPhone release, but other iOS users were left out in the cold. Google has added Huddle settings and aggregated circle add notifications to the app. We’re big fans of the Google+ “Circles” feature, which allows you to control who sees what, so if you haven’t given the new social network a try yet, we suggest you do. Read on for the iTunes Store link. More →

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BlackBerry PlayBook Android support delayed until ‘late fall’

By on August 3, 2011 at 9:50 AM.

BlackBerry PlayBook Android support delayed until ‘late fall’

Research In Motion originally said that its QNX-powered BlackBerry PlayBook tablet would be capable of running Android applications through a virtual player this summer. While early builds of the software have already been leaked, we’re nearing the end of the summer and PlayBook owners are still Android-less. Unfortunately, Engadget has learned that the BlackBerry maker has delayed support for Android applications until ‘late fall.’ There’s no word on an exact date, but the sooner RIM can offer support the more attractive its PlayBook tablet will be. More →

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House Judiciary chairman Lamar Smith pledges support for AT&T, T-Mobile merger

By on August 2, 2011 at 5:25 PM.

House Judiciary chairman Lamar Smith pledges support for AT&T, T-Mobile merger

House Judiciary Committee chairman Lamar Smith wrote a letter to FCC chairman Julius Genachowski and Eric Holder, the Attorney General of the United States, on Tuesday expressing his support of AT&T’s planned $39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile. Smith said he believes the FCC and the Department of Justice have only heard “one side of the story” from members of congress who provided “limited information” during recent briefings. Smith also said that his committee has “heard evidence” that the merger will:

Substantially improve the quality of the capacity of its broadband network thereby creating jobs an spurring innovation; use existing spectrum more efficiently to overcome the current spectrum shortage; expand its LTE mobile broadband Internet service to 97% of America including much of rural America; and provide better service to its customers thereby giving its competitors an incentive to improve their service.

Smith said any evidence from the congressional hearings that omits the aforementioned points “paints an incomplete picture.” Sprint has been one of the most vocal opponents of the merger and has said that, in contrast to creating jobs and innovation, the acquisition will “stifle” innovation in the U.S. Wireless market. Read on for more. More →

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Verizon Wireless wins J.D. Power customer care award

By on July 28, 2011 at 7:32 PM.

Verizon Wireless wins J.D. Power customer care award

J.D. Power and Associates announced on Thursday that Verizon Wireless ranked highest in the company’s 2011 Wireless Customer Care Performance Study, Volume 2. The carrier’s overall score was 770/1000, which was above the average 761 score in the ‘full service’ category. T-Mobile came in second place with a score of 766, followed by Sprint (752) and AT&T (751). J.D. Power and Associates also noted that non-contract customers have shorter wait times than customers with contracts (5.5 minutes versus 4.4 minutes). “There is also a disparity between the contract and non-contract segments in terms of the quality of the experience with the service representative,” J.D. Power and Associates senior director of wireless services Kirk Parsons said. “In particular, non-contract customers are considerably less satisfied than are contract customers in the areas of knowledge about plans; personal concern for customers; and apathy towards customers.” Boost Mobile ranked the best among non-contract carriers with a score of 763. Read on for the full press release. More →

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Dell considering using Google+ Hangouts for customer support

By on July 21, 2011 at 6:01 AM.

Dell considering using Google+ Hangouts for customer support

Michael Dell is toying with the idea of using Google+ Hangouts for Dell’s customer support. The service allows users to initiate a video chat session with multiple people inside their Google+ circles. “I am thinking about hangouts for business. Would you like to be able to connect with your Dell service and sale teams via video directly from Dell.com?” he posted on his Google+ page on Sunday. The idea was an instant success: 556 people had given the comment a +1 as of Tuesday morning and hundreds more left comments in support of the suggestion. As GigaOm points out, it is currently not possible to start a “Hangout” session from anywhere but from inside Google+ itself. The social network is still in a young invite-only phase, too, so some customers would not have access just yet. Still, Google has said that it plans to offer Google+ for businesses, so perhaps Dell’s idea could come to fruition down the road. More →

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Motorola updating Wi-Fi XOOM to Android 3.2

By on July 12, 2011 at 10:21 PM.

Motorola updating Wi-Fi XOOM to Android 3.2

Motorola began issuing the Android 3.2 (Honeycomb) update to Wi-Fi XOOM owners on Tuesday. The patch reportedly adds support for the tablet’s SD card slot and also features a new screen zooming feature that will allow users to resize mobile applications so that they fit the screen appropriately. Android 3.2 will also add support for smaller tablets with 7-inch screens, many of which currently run older versions of Android such as Gingerbread. Google also announced that it is releasing parts of the Android 3.2 source code to the Android Open Source Project. More →

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