Google’s tablet and living-room media device, unveiled at its annual developer conference, were enough to have some Google fans and tech commentators fawning over the company. Google also stepped it up another notch with a demonstration of the prototype Google Glass and a promise to turn it into a product by early 2014, reminding us that Google still has huge technology ambition – though some were not sure sure the company was taking the right direction. Read more
The Google Glass project is an impressive demonstration of the search company’s willingness to confront big technical challenges in pursuit of a breakthrough product. But the chances of it having a meaningful impact in the short term are not high.
That’s the conclusion I was left with after a brief test of the glasses on Wednesday – though since this is still a long way from becoming a consumer product, any judgments are highly provisional. Read more
Now that the post-float hubbub has passed, it is clear that Facebook priced its initial public offering too aggressively. I don’t know if it was a quest for the bragging rights it felt went with a $100bn-plus valuation, but there was little or no consideration for the consequences. Instead of pricing the stock with some upward room for new investors, they let everyone who had invested earlier take the maximum out and cash in. Faced with high earnings expectations, Facebook will need to do more with a business model that is suspect at best. And now they are doing it with a full boat of shareholders who are underwater on their investment.
Continue reading: “Facebook lessons from a dotcom veteran”
The way in which a new product is unveiled can sometimes be just as important as the product itself. However, in Microsoft’s case this week, a few hiccups didn’t appear to distract some tech commentators from writing glowing reviews of the company’s tablet computer, Surface, announced on Monday. Read more
Microsoft has come up with its answer to the iPad: a magnesium-encased tablet sporting a colourful cover that doubles as a keyboard.
The FT’s Matt Garrahan was on hand at the launch event in Los Angeles on Monday afternoon for the great unveiling of the Surface. Read our live coverage of the event as it unfolded, after the break.
Microsoft has taken a leaf out of Apple’s book by pumping up the anticipation – and speculation – ahead of its media event in Los Angeles late on Monday afternoon (local time). But even if it does launch its own hotly-anticipated tablet computer, the real issue is not hardware: it’s whether Microsoft can come up with the content and services it will need to draw buyers away from the iPad. Read more
The leading hard drive makers seem set on reinventing themselves – extending not just their storage capacities but their product lines as well.
Seagate announced Backup Plus, a drive that can also backup media on your social networks, on Monday and it is in the process of acquiring the premium drive maker LaCie.
Now Western Digital is taking on the likes of Linksys and Netgear with a complete lineup of routers it claims will usher in a “new era of blazing fast HD entertainment streaming”. Read more
Apple disappointed some in failing to provide any news on Apple TV at its developer conference this week, with attendees at the TV of Tomorrow (TVOT) show – a short walk from Apple’s event in San Francisco – noting this would have given a boost to the industry.
Instead, much of what was discussed at TVOT – second-screen activities, automatic content recognition (ACR), T[elevision] commerce – still represented the TV of tomorrow in terms of scaling and reaching a mass market, according to speakers. Read more
The body overseeing the allocation of new web addresses has revealed intense competition for certain domain names and strong demand for non-Latin web suffixes as companies apply to own potential rivals to .com, writes Duncan Robinson.
A total of 1,930 applications for new web suffixes were made, with more than a third of these aimed at just 229 addresses, according to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, the organisation in charge of regulating web domains. Read more
Apple has unveiled Facebook integration with its software as well as a new Maps app to replace Google’s service. Its annual Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) in San Francisco was also shown a new high-end MacBook Pro with a high-resolution Retina display.
The WWDC keynote, led by Tim Cook, chief executive, gave final details on Mountain Lion, the next version of its Mac operating system and unveiled iOS 6 – an update to the iPhone and iPad’s interface and apps. The improvements to software and hardware – the whole MacBook range was upgraded – will help Apple better compete with Android devices and Ultrabooks that will soon feature Windows 8. The news is detailed in our live blog of the event after the jump. Read more
The video game industry looked to the razzle-dazzle of its annual trade show in Los Angeles this week to lift it out of depression and E3, in part, delivered.
Sales have been suffering as interest has waned in the current generation of consoles, now seven years old, but Nintendo showed more than 20 games that would feature on its innovative Wii U console, due to launch later this year. Read more
Sony was the only console maker to unveil new hardware of any significance at the video game industry’s E3 trade show in Los Angeles this week.
However, the Wonderbook is the most natural looking peripheral you can imagine – it looks just like a real book but works with an Eye camera and Move controller to conjure augmented-reality 3D images from its pages. . It will go on sale later this year for $40 bundled with its first title, Book of Spells, an original work from Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling.
In an interview at E3, Andy House, president of Sony Computer Entertainment, told me how the Wonderbook came about. Highlights after the jump. Read more