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Monthly Archives: November 2012
They say good things come in small packages and our annual gift guide shows this certainly applies to gadgets as Christmas presents this year – many of the best innovations of 2012 are small enough to fit in a Christmas stocking. We rate them for coolness and value for money with Kudos and VFM stars out of five.
In a new Financial Times ebook, on sale globally today, Barney Jopson and other FT writers lift the lid on a company which has grown from online book business into overlord of a corporate eco-system over which it wields extraordinary power. Read more
Nintendo Wii U
Nintendo has launched the next generation of home video consoles with the debut of the Wii U in the US, and European and Japanese launches to follow on November 30 and December 8. The unique GamePad controller is earning plaudits, but network problems and content delays are a concern.
Things got quite exciting in London at noon on Tuesday. First Kweku Adoboli, the rogue trader formerly employed by UBS, was sentenced to seven years in prison for fraud. Then Hewlett-Packard accused the former management of Autonomy, the UK software company, of wrongdoing. The moral appeared to be, as a New York journalist wryly tweeted: “Don’t trust the British.”
When your company has been built around a deeply ingrained product development and manufacturing process, it is hard to change. And when that process has given you a world-beating edge through any number of product and technology cycles, it is even less easy to see why you should.
Now add in another complication: Wall Street thinks you have traded away your future and you need to learn a whole new way of doing business. But there is a catch. It does not want you to give up the unrepeatable profit margins you make from your old ways.
The co-founder of PayPal and Tesla, and founder of SpaceX talks to the FT’s John Gapper and Daniel Garrahan about electric cars for the mass market and putting people on Mars, at the UK launch of his sports car.
Google’s latest addition to its hardware range, the Nexus 10, has landed. This time Google partnered with Samsung to produce an iPad-beating spec sheet and what they tout as the ‘highest resolution display in the world’. Priced at £319 in the UK and $399 in the US, could the Nexus 10 tempt Android holdouts? Read more
A mere two weeks after the release of Windows 8, Microsoft surprised many when it announced the departure of Steven Sinofsky, head of Windows. While many tech observers noted a parallel between Sinofsky’s exit and Apple’s recent management shakeup, others pointed out that chief executive Steve Ballmer could be the next target. Read more
In a week of big numbers for a previously slumping video game industry, Activision has come up with the biggest one of all – $500m in sales of Call of Duty: Black Ops II in its first 24 hours.
On Monday, Microsoft announced $220m in first-day sales for Halo 4 and then revealed, on the 10th anniversary of Xbox Live on Thursday, that a record 442m hours were played on it last week. Meanwhile, Sony announced sales of the PlayStation 3 had passed 70m and Nintendo expects the Wii U to sell out when it goes on sale in the US this weekend. Read more
Lytro’s revolutionary light-field camera has received a couple of interesting enhancements to boost its appeal during the holiday season.
The Silicon Valley company announced Perspective Shift – a way of bringing total focus to a picture and moving around in it – and Living Filters – the ability to add Instagram-like effects to shots taken. Read more
How far will Google go to head off the threat of long and damaging antitrust battles on both sides of the Atlantic – and how hard will regulators push to cramp its expansive style?
The answers to those questions should become clearer in the next few weeks, as the European Commission and the US Federal Trade Commission press the company for voluntary changes in its business model to end their antitrust investigations. Rivals want radical action, perhaps even extending to a break-up of Google into separate companies that handle search and other services. The likely outcome, though, is more minimalist.
The new UP, costing $30 more than the original, has been rigorously tested and its components improved to prevent a repeat of the public relations and financial fiasco for the company. Read more
The developers of the Pebble smart watch made Kickstarter history in May when they raised $10.2m, the largest sum received through the fast-growing crowdfunding site. But it is now in danger of attaining an equal notoriety for delays and busted deadlines.
When the biggest beast in the jungle decides not to fight you any more, your survival chances go up a lot. That’s the message from HTC shares on Monday.
After the company and Apple announced a global settlement that includes the dismissal of all current lawsuits and a ten-year license agreement, shares in the Taiwanese phonemaker leapt up 6.86 per cent – its daily limit. But is this the turning point for HTC, which saw profits fall 80 per cent in the third quarter?
When Apple filed suit against HTC for patent violations in 2010, it was the first time the California-based company had turned its legal arsenal on an Android phone-maker.