post

The Tethering / Hotspot Debate: No, You’re Not a Thief. But Somebody Else is a Highway Robber.

 

Interesting debate at ZDNet over wireless data plans:  James Kendrick claims that unpaid tethering makes you a thief.   Thankfully his fellow ZDNet-er Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols has the common sense to dispute  this tethering thief nonsense.

Yes, technically if your wireless contract includes an anti-hotspot clause and you turn this feature on, you are in violation. Of the contract, that is.  Your provider has the right to levy additional charges, or terminate your contract. But does that make you a thief?  I’d much rather conclude your provider commits highway robbery.

Remember this device?

Yes, phones used to look like that.  And there was a time when phone companies (actually, “the” phone company, Ma Bell) charged extra when you had more then one outlet in your home….

Remember the early days of cable TV?   You had to ( well, were supposed to) pay extra for each additional cable outlet.

How about the early days of the Internet, before wireless became pervasive?  Yes, ISPs expected you to pay extra for each outlet…

(Cross-posted @ CloudAve » Zoli Erdos)

post

No For Kno, Finally. It Was DOA Anyway.

Boomtown reports Kno, makers of the flip-open dual tablet designed for the education market is planning to sell off the hardware business, and focus on software only. Says Kara Swisher:

That’s because marketing a new and complex product like the Kno takes a lot of effort and cash, especially since it is an increasingly competitive market for mobile and portable computing products that includes Apple, Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, Google, Amazon, Dell and many others.

Oh, really?  I think not.  It’s not about marketing.. it’s about recognizing the product was Dead On Arrival… a ridiculously impossible design.  And no, I’m not just discovering it now, I declared in DOA when it was announced:

The Kno is Not a Tablet. It’s a Workout Device

At 5 and a half pounds it’s not exactly a lightweight tablet you would want to hold for hours…

(Cross-posted @ CloudAve » Zoli Erdos)

post

Time Magazin’s Technology and Person of the Year: the iZuck

List, list…like I’ve said, it’s THAT time of the year.  So let’s consolidate, where we can. Why bother having a separate Technology and Person of the year:

time-ipad-460time-zuckerberg

…when we can have it combined.  Ladies and Gentlemen, meet the iZuck:

IMG_1453

Slim, portable, does not talk backSmile

(Cross-posted @ CloudAve » Zoli Erdos)

post

HP Slate 500–Big Yawn.

I love my iPad.  I hate my iPad.  Was preparing to dump it for the Samsung Galaxy Tab, until it turned out to be a 7”-er now.  Size matters, after all (or is it just my eyes?).

So I got momentarily excited reading about the HP Slate 500 but that was a short moment. The new business-focused device is based on Windows 7.  Now, as a former victim of Vista I’ll be the first one to admit that Windows 7 is a stable, good operating system.  For the PC. It’s just not meant for a tablet.  Even if you call it a slate. The proof comes at the 27th second of this engadget video (the best part of which is the leading commercial. The kids are cuteSmile)

Yes, you have to touch items from …

(Cross-posted @ CloudAve » Zoli Erdos)

post

Ungrateful iBozos, Stop the Whining. Get a (i)Life.

<sarcasm>

iPhone-4-steve-jobs I’m sick of all this whining within the iFamily.  These iBozos just don’t appreciate all the goodness they have.

iPhone preorder systems failed.  So what?  You’ve just saved a boatload of money, be happy, get a life!

Yet another At&T security breach. What’s the big deal?  All your data is public anyway, has been for a while, will always be so, so STFU.

Orders Charged and Sent to the Wrong People – and Gizmodo has the balls to call it a disaster.  They don’t understand the Grand Scheme. Have you ever been to a potluck party?  You bring some, get some (or not).  Random credit cards get charged and iPhones get delivered to random people – so what?  On the average it all works out, everyone receives an iPhone (or not).  We’re all part of iFamily.

MG Siegler Wants a Micro-Cell Rip-Off Box – WTF?  To actually waste time making calls?  Voice calls are so 90’s anyway. He should pay extra to AT&T for providing such a valuable time-saver plan.

I’m fed up with these unfaithful, ungrateful iWhiners.  They should be happy to be admitted to the iChurch and shut up. At least while on AT&T

</sarcasm>

(Cross-posted @ CloudAve)

post

Best Buy Smarter than the Apple Store

apple storeThere is an App for that” – is the mantra nowadays, and I really hoped for one,  to solve the major task of telling me where I can buy an iPad.  Anywhere, in any physical store along my long drive from San Francisco to Pleasanton. In the real-time, always-on age it should not be a big deal.  But it is.

Of the two potential sources Best Buy fares better: at least they have an online inventory locator, which tells you none of the stores have it 🙁

Apple stores (the best retail experience in any industry)?  Fuhhgedaboudit.  You can order online and wait two weeks for delivery, find retail stores, even make personal shopping appointments, but the online system can’t tell you availability in the individual stores.  But the Apple site certainly looks better than Best Buys.  Design without content. 🙁

So I am back to the Stone Age method: calling stores one by one.  At least my smartphone helps with that: Google Maps pulls up the stores in the area, and I can touch to call them one by one.   All Apple stores answer with this message:

Thank you for calling the Apple Store in …..  The magical and revolutionary iPad is now available…

Except it’s not. Available.  You have to get to a live salesperson, store by store, to get that information. The welcome message is a cheery lie.   Once again, Best Buy fares better:  the welcome message apologizes that they did not receive new shipments, and all their stores are out of iPad inventory.

So that leaves me with one choice: ordering the iPad online. Which I did.  And don’t get me started on how many things went wrong during the order process…

I know, I deserve it.  After all on the long ride from Google I/O @ Moscone to Pleasanton I had two gorgeous smartphones next to me, on the passenger seat.  Both Android. 🙂

(Cross-posted @ CloudAve)

post

iPad + Wife Bundle – No Kidding

ipad wife iPad’s are now generally available, so I can’t fathom why people think they can sell it at premium over @ eBay or Craigslist.  But there’s one unusal bundle that caught my eyes:

iPad 32g 3G+WIFE – $799 (oakland downtown)


Date: 2010-05-01, 7:10AM PDT
Reply to: [email protected]


Hi, its open box and I just it last night from Apple retail store…
Don’t really know how to use…So…
Any questions: ……    or email:…..

Thanks for looking and have a nice day.

Is this:

  • A “value pack” adding the wife as a bonus to justify the premium on the iPad?
  • A bonus gift to whoever is willing to take wifey?

🙂

(Cross-posted @ CloudAve)

post

Courier & Foldable Tablets are Neither Innovative Nor “Different”

courier This is a sad “I’ve told you” moment, as I predicted the death of dual-screen tablets, be it the one by MSI or Microsoft’s Courier, which has just been canceled.  Says Frank Shaw, Microsoft’s VP of corporate communications:

At any given time, across any of our business groups, there are new ideas being investigated, tested, and incubated. It’s in Microsoft’s DNA to continually develop and incubate new technologies to foster productivity and creativity. The “Courier” project is an example of this type of effort and its technologies will be evaluated for use in future Microsoft offerings, but we have no plans to build such a device at this time.

Tech blogs are mourning the innovative, “different” device:

Courier was one of the most innovative concepts out of Redmond in quite some time.

I think dual-screen, foldable tablets are neither innovative nor different.  Well, different from other, truly innovative devices, like the iPad, but not different from good old books.  And therein lies the rub.  Hardware manufacturers rushing to the opportunity to follow Apple thought these tablets are mostly reading devices, so they imitated what we’re all used to: books.

Having two small pages side-by-side is not necessarily the ideal format for reading, it’s just the one we got stuck with for centuries when bound paper was the only way we could record / consume textual information. When we liberate information from paper, there’s no point in replicating the poor paper (book) experience. True innovation means embracing the paradigm-shift, rethinking the basics and maximizing readability, comfort, ability to interact as enabled by the new technology.

(Cross-posted @ CloudAve)

post

iPray

As they say a picture is worth a thousand words.  Oliver Widder’s Geek And Poke series is one of my favorites… and yes, one cartoon is often worth an entire post… the pic says it all.

I just hope we won’t get in trouble..  now that the word “Pad” is on Apple’s ban list …  (is the entire feminine care industry in trouble?  will they go after NASA for using Launch Pad?)… oh, well, will they claim rights for the use of the letter “i”?

(Cross-posted @ CloudAve)

post

So You Bought a JooJoo – How Will it be Serviced?

I know, it’s crazy to talk about the JooJoo (formerly known as CrunchPad) a day before the iPad is released.  But the major gadget blogs do, having received a test unit – and that in itself is a bit of a PR coup for JooJoo.  They should enjoy it while it last.   Too bad it won’t turn into sales figures.  According to court documents, Fusion Garage has taken 90 pre-orders for their unit.  That is Ninety, not Ninety Thousand.

There are lots of comparisons, and without going into detail they all go like this:  for the same price as the entry-level iPad, the JooJoo comes with a bigger screen, Flash support, but clearly without the ecosystem and App Store Apple can offer.  Here’s what all these comparisons miss: where will you take it for service?

A $499 device is not a disposable gadget for most people, and guess what, it will inevitably fail.  All gadgets do.  Apple’s support is legendary, even though manufacturing quality id often questionable, Apple owners – fans walk in to an Apple store and walk out happily after full service in an hour. That’s how you turn customers into fans.  I recently had an amazing experience with Dell support (yes, I know, hard to believe) where they sent me a replacement unit for my sleek Vostro V13 before even asking me to return the defective one.

Now, how can you expect the same from a no-name company with uncertain financial background and a lawsuit to deal with?  The specs could be marvelous, but you have to ask yourself:  who you will trust for service: Apple or JooJoo?  And that’s why buying a JooJoo is a huge leap of faith.

(Cross-posted @ CloudAve )