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The Acer Aspire Switch 10 Changes the Tech Landscape

August 11, 2014

This cheap tablet is perfect for students and consumers





The Acer Aspire Switch 10 two-in-one touchscreen tablet/laptop may be the ultimate device for students and consumers. In short, it offers all the good of a PC meaning you can run full Microsoft Office applications like Word and Excel and at the same time it is a touchscreen tablet which can be used for media consumption. It runs Flash so all the challenges many other tablets have with this Adobe creation aren’t a problem.

HumansFirst ColdSmoke Lets You Buy with your Smartphone

August 7, 2014

While speech-technology has come a long way, we still haven’t entered the world of Star Trek reruns where the computer can do truly useful things through voice interactions. A big step in the right direction comes from a new app from N.L.P. LLP called HER. Yes, Siri works well for many things but if you tell it you want to buy an iPad Mini with Retina Display, it tells you to check out Apple.com which isn’t the best mobile experience if you want to buy something quickly.



Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 is an Ultrabook in Tablet's Clothing

May 21, 2014

To be blunt, Microsoft totally blew its lead in mobile, has tried to come at the tablet market twice with Surface variants and now has decided that instead of a tablet vendor they will become a laptop vendor. In other words, they couldn’t cut it in the tablet space so they decided to move up-market (or down depending on perspective) to go after the Ultrabook segment.

And suffice it to say the Surface Pro 3 has what it takes to take on most every competitor out there – which of course makes us wonder exactly what Dell, HP, Samsung, Acer, Asus, Lenovo and others are thinking right now. Well, we do know but this is a family blog after all and profanity has no place in it.

Truphone's Vastly Expanded International Roaming Plan

May 21, 2014

Truphone bills itself as the first global network operator and in an age where international roaming bills can run up quite quickly, having the company in your corner can make predictable international voice, data and text pricing a reality. As a reminder, in order to use the service, you need an unlocked device and a supplied SIM card. The last time I covered (see below) the company they were introducing their international sharing plan and since then they have added countries – there are now eight. The service allows you to not only travel to various countries using a pool of international minutes; you are also given local international numbers.

Will Vobi Make Enterprise Social a Reality?

May 20, 2014

One of the biggest disappointments in the world of tech predictions has to be the enterprise social space. For years, the common wisdom in the market was that this segment would be booming… Millennials were supposed to infiltrate the workforce and with them bring a golden age of collaboration, replacing email and many other pieces of software in their wake. Huge bets were made in the area. Microsoft bough “enterprise Twitter” service Yammer, Cisco spent a fortune to launch Quad.

Everyone is Wrong about the Apple Beats Acquisition

May 9, 2014

If you read the media reports last night or yesterday, you heard that Apple is in talks to buy Beats Electronics because of the latter company’s streaming service. Frankly, I can’t understand this logic and perhaps I have the inability to understand the obvious but to me the reason has more to do with the brand and international expansion opportunities and most importantly the one thing everyone seems to think the acquisition is not about… Retail. Yes retail. Apple is a master at it.

Games: The Biggest Opportunity Carriers are Ignoring

April 25, 2014

Carriers are losing control over core network services such as voice and text which is in-turn making them dumb-pipe providers. While wireless is still a profitable business, the presence of companies like T-Mobile and Sprint in the US makes it more difficult than ever for carriers like AT&T and Verizon to keep their higher than industry-average margins. Just this week in fact, Sprint said it will unlock all its phones in less than 12 months. Add to that the bring-your-own-device mentality that T-Mobile has brought from Europe to the US and you can see why the 2-year contract; a mainstay in the US carrier market is slowly disappearing as customers migrate to options like AT&T’s Next plan.

Boingo, GigSky, XCom: Why my Europe Connectivity was Awesome

April 23, 2014

A while back, I had a chance to go to MWC (news and analysis) in Barcelona, Spain and like many of you who travel internationally, I was concerned about my cellular bill as I enjoy the relative generosity of multigigabyte 4G data plans in the US. In Europe however the costs can grow quickly. When headed overseas, Verizon charges $25 per 100 MB of data. As many US devices are locked, it becomes a hassle to bypass such restrictions with multiple devices and a bevy of SIM cards.

Intel Buys Way into Tablets While $99 may be Microsoft Sweet Spot

April 16, 2014

Intel recently reported earnings and the takeaway is the company is going to focus more on Android and ramp up subsidies to get into more OEM tablet designs in Asia and elsewhere.

Intel said that its Windows tablets are shipping in numbers which barely register in their quarterly numbers. Obviously this isn't a positive development. To put this in perspective, out of the five-million processors the chip behemoth shipped for tablets, as little as 10% were for Windows. It seems many analysts are convinced that for Windows devices to be successful, they need keyboards and to some extent this makes sense as tablets are typically described as consumption devices.

Can Apple's Haunted Empire Still Make Hits?

March 20, 2014

Isn’t it funny how much of the world has changed thanks to Steve Jobs? As I sit here at my computer using a mouse and GUI, which Jobs popularized while listening to MP3s, another industry he revitalized, I am fascinated by how much this man changed computing. Over a decade ago, my company TMC launched a show in the biometrics space called BiometriTech and another in the tablet space, Tablet PC Summit. Both shows failed because the companies in the industries failed to make products in volumes that translated into marketing budgets which allowed for a successful conference.

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