Thursday, October 27, 2016

SmartWatch Sales

Bought a smartwatch recently? How very 2015 of you.
The number of smartwatches shipped over the most recent three months has declined 52 percent compared with the same July-to-September period last year, according to a report by IDC wearables analysts.
Apple remains the leading smartwatch maker, but it has also seen fewer people interested in its tech-enabled timepiece this year than in 2015. It has lost significant ground to Garmin, thanks to that company's growing portfolio of fitness-focused smartwatches.
In 2015, Apple owned more than 70 percent of the smartwatch market and Garmin only 2 percent. Garmin now owns more than 20 percent, and Apple 41 percent.
Samsung has remained on pretty much an even keel, even though its newest watch, the Gear S3, hasn't yet gone on sale. Motorola, on the other hand, has been a victim of its own success, given that many vendors sold out of the first and second generations of its Moto 360 device -- and that for the first time in several years it has not released a smartwatch in the run-up to the holidays.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Samsung Galaxy Tab A

With the Galaxy Note 7 still making headlines, Samsung is ready to divert some of America's attention to another big screen with a pen: the 10.1" Galaxy Tab A will be available stateside starting October 28th. Samsung's latest tablet to hit American shores comes with a slightly larger, slightly higher definition screen than last year's model, and the company's S Pen stylus now comes standard.

Powering the new 1920x1200 WUXGA screen is an Octa-core Exynos 7870 processor with 3 GB of RAM and 16 GB of on-board storage, with support for up to 256 GB more in the microSD slot. There's an 8 megapixel camera for photos, plus a 2 megapixel front-facing camera for selfies and video calls. Weighing in at 1.22 pounds, Samsung claims you'll get around 14 hours of internet time out of the 7,300mAh battery -- or about an hour less if you're binge-watching video. For connectivity, the Tab A gets all the standard WiFi protocols, Bluetooth 4.2 LE and USB 2.0 for charging, but there doesn't appear to be an LTE version available just yet. Finally, for excited Android Nougat adopters, the Tab A ships with 6.0 Marshmallow so you'll have to wait for the update from Samsung at some point in the future.

The Tab A comes in two colors – your standard black and white – and will retail for $349.99 starting this Friday at and select shops.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

EA Mobile

Electronic Arts has struck gold with Madden NFL Football on mobile, where it has consistently been in the top-ten grossing games and making a ton of money. But FIFA Mobile isn’t even in the top 100. If the company can change that, the financial impact could be huge, as FIFA is by far EA’s most valuable sports game franchise, and there’s no reason it shouldn’t grab a bigger part of the $36 billion mobile game industry.
Madden (in its refined form) has had a head start for three years, but FIFA Mobile debuted in October, and it is holding the No. 7 position in the U.S. iOS app store as far as top downloads go. It’s not a bad start for a title that carries such high hopes.

EA has been making FIFA mobile titles for a half-dozen years, but it hasn’t said how many people are playing and making purchases within them. Much of that time has been spent figuring out what works. Just taking a console game and putting it on a mobile device hasn’t been that fruitful. So this year’s FIFA Mobile offering is far different from the popular console entries.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Tesla Self Driving Cars

Tesla Motors announced that its electric cars will be the first in the nation to all be fitted with the hardware they need to drive themselves.
CEO Elon Musk announced Wednesday that the automaker's Model S, X and forthcoming Model 3 sedan will start being outfitted with "the hardware needed for full self-driving capability at a safety level substantially greater than that of a human driver."
That constitutes full Level 5 autonomy, which doesn't require any driver involvement. That's the ultimate goal for a range of automakers and tech companies, including Google, Ford and Volvo, which have vowed to produce such self-driving vehicles by 2021.

Friday, October 21, 2016

New Netgear Router

Gamers and big downloaders can rejoice. Netgear is launching what it calls the “world’s fastest router,” the Nighthawk X10, for media streaming, instant backup, and fast gameplay.
The Nighthawk X10 AD7200 Smart Wi-Fi Router is a follow-up to the Nighthawk brand that the company launched in 2013.
San Jose, Calif.-based Netgear is pitching the router to enthusiasts who like 4K video streams and virtual reality gaming.
The router combines a 1.7-gigahertz quad-core processor — the fastest processor in a home router — and quad-stream Wave 2 Wi-Fi architecture. It can handle the next-generation Wi-Fi known in engineering lingo as “802.11ad” Wi-Fi, with speeds up to 7.2 gigabits per second.
It uses the latest MU-MIMO technology to support simultaneous streaming, and it doubles Wi-Fi speeds to mobile devices. It has four patent-pending external Active Antennae to amplify Nighthawk X10 Wi-Fi signals to maximize range and throughput.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Snapchat Revenue Sharing

Snapchat says it’s done sharing with media companies.
The red-hot messaging app wants to make a major change in the way it works with companies that supply it with content for its “Discover” section.
Instead of sharing ad revenue that section produces, Snapchat wants to pay content partners a flat license fee up front and keep the ad money for itself. It’s the same model that TV networks use when they buy programming.
That’s a switch from the terms Snapchat has offered since it launched Discover in 2015. Up until now,it has let publishers sell ads against their own content, and Snapchat has also sold ads against the same content using its own sales team. Splits have varied depending on the deal and who sold the ads.
Other big digital platforms, including Facebook and Apple, have offered similar programs to publishers that provide them content.
The new terms, which Snapchat has started proposing over the last few weeks, means the company will have full control over its ad inventory as it gears up for a public offering.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016


HTC really wants VR to happen. For all of their mobile handset woes, the company is keen to grab the next platform shift by the horns and have the ecosystem and infrastructure in place to become an early powerhouse in the space.
The company’s VR presence has notably been lacking in the mobile department which has been somewhat confounding given the fact that they seem to understand that mobile is sorta kinda important. Today, the company announced a mobile version of its Viveport VR storefront for Android phones.
Viveport M is looking to serve as a hub for 360 content and dedicated VR apps that work for users with and without headsets. It is initially launching in China, though HTC says a global rollout is already being planned.