After being impressed with the House of Marley’s Redemption Song On-Ear headphones we have now spent some time with their Zion In-Ear head phones. These follow in the same style as the Redemption Song headphones and are made of recycled or renewable materials. They also follow in the trend of being tuned for high quality sound and are designed for use with Apple’s lineup of products (iPad, iPod, iPhone) but will work with just about any media player or smart phone (with a few exceptions). With a price tag of $99.99 we are hoping that these headphones give us the same level of performance that we saw with the Redemption Song. Follow the bouncing ball and sing along as we tell your just how well they perform.
One of the things that continues to annoy me about Microsoft is their constant failures. These failures are not due to product failures. The products they make are pretty solid; no it is because Microsoft fails to understand the market they are competing in. In the Operating system market Microsoft truly only has one competitor. I know I am annoying the Linux guys when I say this but Apple is their only real competition when it comes to the desktop OS. The same thing can be said for their Productivity suite Office. Even Mac owners use Office for Mac. Again I know there are multiple open source office products but even the most popular of them cannot compete with Microsoft sales in this area.
So now that we are done with new iPhone let’s see what else Apple has got for us. Two things will be together for all of their products, new earphones called “Earpods” and a new connector. Lightning, the name of the new dock connector, will use an all-digital 8-signal design and will be able to be connected either side up. This means you won’t have to look for that squared symbol anymore on your cord. It is also 80% smaller than the old 30-pin connector and Apple has stated that it has improved durability. There will also be an adapter for the 30-pin connector. Apple said that one of the reasons for making this connector was to make more space inside the case.
During our trip to CES 2012 we managed to stumble across some cool technology. Some of this was in the form of gadgets, while some was more about supporting the gadgets and extending what they can do. One of these products was DryCASE. DryCASE makes exactly that, a case intended to keep everything inside of it dry. The demo for this product was pretty impressive; we contacted them and asked about performing our own review on this product.
When this one first hit we did not jump into the mix with the rest of the sites pushing a statement that Apple’s servers were corrupting new versions of apps pushed up to the iTunes App Store. Now, things are a little different as Apple has acknowledged the issue and is working on a fix. The issue seems to revolve around an update to Apple’s DRM software Fairplay.
After going through the news and editorials about the Apple V Samsung case we have found something very interesting in Apple’s attack methods. One of the lead pieces of evidence for their alleged consumer confusion is the number of returns of Samsung products to stores like Best Buy etc. Apple would like you to believe that customers mistakenly picked up a Galaxy Tab when they meant to get an iPad and then returned it after realizing it was not an iPad. It is a piece of logic that in any other place in the world or with almost any other judge would have been thrown out as preposterous, but for some reason Judge Lucy Koh is letting this stand. You see Apple’s logic and claim here is seriously flawed and here is why.
Three hours after the closing of the Apple Store in Paris on New Year's Eve someone staged an invasion robbery through the back door of the shop. During this robbery unknown assailants stole gadgets worth a total of $1.6 million. The four masked robbers carrying short firearms broke into the store, wounded a guard, picked up smart phones and tablets, loaded them into a van parked nearby and drove away in an unknown direction.
It seems that Apple and Qualcomm wanted to try and lock out competition when it comes to the use of TSMC (The Taiwanese Semi-Conductor Manufacturing Corporation). The pair attempted to buy themselves a nice exclusive deal with TSMC with a large bundle of cash (over $1 billion). However, TSMC decided that there was more money to be had in keeping things open. The original deal from Qualcomm and Apple was to make sure the pair had access to production facilities. TSMC replied by saying that they could always expand if there was a need, but that they would internally fund it.
Yesterday I wrote an article where I speculated on the reasons that Dag Kittlaus (Co-Founder of Siri) is leaving Apple. In it a mention that it appeared that Apple intentionally limited Siri to the iPhone 4S as there was really not that much to lure consumers to it. By offering a “killer app” like Siri Apple was sure to bring the consumers to the new device. Apple’s comments on the new API were that older devices and even the iPad were not designed with this in mind and/or did not have the hardware to support it.
This has been proven to be a little misleading as there have been groups that have gotten Siri to run on the iPad older iPhones and now even the iPod. Yup, that is right the API that is not supposed to run on hardware other than the iPhone 4S is now operational on the iPod. The people responsible for this are a pair that goes by the names euwars and rudolf77. They put their heads together and did what all the engineers (pronounce that executives) at Apple could not.
Now this is not to say that there are not issues; because Apple’s servers are not allowing the connection from anything that is not an iPhone 4S (again with the control) none of the non-4S devices are having their commands executed. However, as you can see the problem is not the devices it is all Apple. Now, we are certain that since it has only been a matter of a couple of weeks since Siri and the iPhone 4S went live (and we are already seeing Siri ported to many of the Apple family) it really is only a matter of time before someone finds a way to spoof the command calls to the Apple servers and gets all of this working.
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In news that surprises no one HTC has filed a complaint and suit against Apple today for… you guessed it Patent Infringement. All of this began not too long ago when Apple started its campaign against Android Phone makers claiming that Samsung, HTC and a few others have violated Apple’s patents on various functions and even the look and feel of their method of finger scrolling. Apple has one the first round in many of these cases, but things seem to be turning around.
It has recently come to light that Apple’s evidence in the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 case is inaccurate. Apple’s legal team knowingly or accidentally submitted false evidence to show that the Tab was a copy of the iPad and iPad2. We do not know the outcome of this incident yet (but we are keeping our eyes open) but it is probably not going to be good for Apple.
Meanwhile HTC has just announced that it is filing its own patent suit against Apple that covers not only the iPad, iPhone and iPod but also every MAC computer with wireless technology that has “Wi-Fi capability that allows users to wirelessly network multiple devices at home, at work, or in public” as covered by US Patent 7,417,944. There is more to the complaint and suit which covers three specific patents (U.S. Patent Nos. 7,417,944, and 7,672,219 and 7,765,414). This is interesting as HTC has not even broken out their S3 Patents yet. These patents came from a purchase of ADC Telecommunications Patents back in April of this year that cover many wireless and even 4G technologies. ADC was later bought by Tyco Electronics (which became TE Connectivity) who sold its wireless communication division to Harris Corp.
Now think about this, if the ADC Telecommunications patents do not cut it they can always push for action based on the new S3 Patents HTC has recently picked up. As we said a couple of days ago; things are getting rather interesting.
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