Friday Grab Bag- MLB.TV at a Discount!

The Fall Classic is coming into sight and if your team is looking to make the playoffs (mine is not) then you might want to consider this offer from MLB. It is offering its TV package, MLB.TV, for $19.99. Subscribers can watch games not just on a TV but also laptops, iPhones and iPads as well as the Xbox 360.

Motorola to Xoom no more
If you have a Motorola Xoom tablet it might be a collectors’ item. No the company is not phasing it out, but it has settled a trademark dispute with Xoom Corp. that spells the end Motorola using that name for its tablet.

Xoom Corp., an online payment company, convinced Motorola that it infringed on Xoom’s trademarks when it released the Xoom tablet, so expect Motorola’s next generation tablet to carry a different name.

Facebook’s CEO Seeks Expanded Mobile Internet Access
Mark Zuckerberg has a tech alliance called that will seek to expand the availability to billions around the globe that currently have no method of getting online. He called the effort “the greatest challenge of our generation.”

Members include Ericsson, Nokia, Samsung, Qualcomm and Opera. Rival Google, which is working on its own solution to this issue, is not a member nor is Intel which has also been active in this area.

Apple to refresh both iPad and iPhone at same time?
Rumors have been going around that Apple would refresh one then wait a few weeks and refresh the other but now they are reporting that both will be done at an event that Apple is expected to host on Sept. 10.

Bloomberg has reported that Apple will release on that date, which interestingly is after several rivals such as Samsung and Sony plan to also release new offerings. Samsung is expected to do Apple one better and debut its smartwatch as well.

Intel preps next generation tablet processor

Intel often has interesting names for its processors and the next two coming down the pipe, Cherry Trail and Willow Trail are expected to be much faster processors than the current Silvermont family which is just now coming on line.

Cherry Trail is expected to hit the market in the third quarter of 2014 while Willow Trail will follow the next quarter, according to a report from Tech Radar.

Details of Archos tablet revealed in FCC filing
Slash Gear is reporting details of an upcoming tablet from Archos that is expected to be called the Archos 101 XS 2, which the company is expected to unveil next month at the IFA show. The tablet will feature 1GB RAM, a 10.1-inch display, 16GB of internal storage and a microSD card slot for additional capacity.

New Tablets from Lenovo and Vizio Hit Market


Last week Lenovo released Miix, its hybrid 10-inch tablet that can also serve as a laptop while Vizio has started shipping its 11.8-inch tablet that it first showed at the beginning of the year at the CES show in Las Vegas.
It seemed just a year ago that tablet releases were something that could be planned easily on a calendar, one company would announce a product release date and one of the few other major players would then announce products the day before.

The Lenovo Miix features a 10.1-inch display that has 1366 x 768 resolution, runs Microsoft Windows 8 operating system and is powered by a dual core Intel Atom processor. It will feature 64GB of storage on board with an additional expansion capability of 32GB via a microSD card.

The key feature for the device is what the company calls a “quick-flip” detachable folio case with an integrated AccuType keyboard that enables users to switch between PC mode and tablet mode as their needs require.

It also includes integrated Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi and/or optional3G-GPS connectivity and up to 10 hours of battery life. The tablet is expected to ship later this summer and will have an estimated entry price of $550.

The Vizio 11.6” Windows 8 Tablet PC has an 11.6-inch 1080p display, runs Windows 8 and is powered by an Advanced Micro Device Z-60 processor with 2GB of RAM. It also features 64GB of storage, a five hour battery life and has a price tag of $600.

Now tablets are announced at major shows such as World Mobile Congress, CES and E3 as well as just when they are ready to ship, a sign that the market is maturing, and that is good news for users and future buyers.

As an increasing number of tablets are released, and all across the pricing spectrum, it seems pretty obvious that not only will they become ubiquitous in peoples’ lives, but that many users will have multiple devices.

This represents a huge opportunity for developers as apps that are focused specifically for tablets will become increasingly important. I can foresee when I have a tablet dedicated for work and one by the television that I use for sports and other purposes that are more entertainment based.

Friday Grab Bag- Major Apple iOS 7 Revamp on the Way?

Google has started providing its developers with the Glass Explorer edition of the product and they have started to create some of the first generation apps for the eyewear. It already comes with voice recognition software to help users navigate and display data but one developer has taken it a step further.

According to a piece by CBS News an app has emerged that cuts out the need to inform the glasses verbally to take a photo or need to touch any sort of button, all you need to do is wink and the action has occurred. I wonder what happens on a windy day, possibly a flash card collection of your day?

Next Gen Samsung Galaxy Note specs leaked

Samsung, which appears to be in an escalating war of smartphone features with Apple, has had the details of its next generation offering released according to SamMobile. The Galaxy Note III is expected feature a 5.99” full Super HD display and a 13 megapixel camera.

The real wow might be the fact that it could be powered by an eight-core CPU and feature an eight-core GPU as well, which should make it one of the most powerful, if not the most powerful handheld device available. It is expected to ship in the August/September time frame.

Google I/O Schedule Released
If you are waiting breathlessly for mid-May when the Google I/O conference is being held, or even if you are just mildly interested, the kind people at Google have released the schedule so that you can plan your day around the events.

There is a three hour keynote so bring your pillow and over 120 sessions. It will be interesting to see how they top the Google Glass skydiving event from last year. Sail a blimp around San Francisco Bay?

Intel and Samsung the latest to invest in Expect Labs
I hope you like Suri and the related speech programs appearing on devices because it looks like more are coming soon. Intel Capital, Samsung Venture Investment and Telefonica Digital have all invested in Expect Labs, a company that develops technology that analyzes and understands conversations in real-time.

The latest investors join Google and IDG Ventures. The company already has an app available called MindMeld for Apple’s iPad tablets.

Will Apple’s expected iOS 7 cause upheaval
Jonathon Ive, the knighted Apple design guru recently took over Apple’s latest efforts to deliver a new version of the operating system and early reports are that it will appeal to new users but may appall experienced ones.

If this sounds familiar it is what has happened to Microsoft with its Windows 8 release. It is reported that Ive will be taking a minimalist approach to the redesign and is expected to remove a good many of the icons and symbols that adorn the OS today in search of a simpler look.

Intel Will Have Major Smartphone Push in Barcelona


Intel will continue its aggressive efforts to penetrate the smartphone processor space and will be highlighting its latest processor family that is designed for that market at the upcoming Mobile World Congress.

It has already started to see some traction in recent months as it gained a major partner for the Asia Pacific market with its relationship with Acer as well as smaller deals in Africa. The deal with Acer has that company now offering the Acer Liquid C1 smartphone that is powered by Intel’s Atom Z2420 processor.

Looking forward to the show in Barcelona on February 25 to 28 Intel will be looking to show off its range of smartphone technologies highlighted by the Atom Z2420 processor, a chip that it has designed specifically for emerging markets.

That processor is just the start of a range of new chips expected from the company this year for the smartphone space. It showed an update to its current Atom Medfield family at the recent CES show with the Bay Trail-T processor and is expected to launch its Merrifield line later this year. It has so far seen some solid benchmarks that have been posted online.

Intel still faces a tough battle in this space, one that it has been trying to gain a substantial market share for the last decade. Qualcomm and others have had a big lead in providing chips to the mobile market. Qualcomm has even surpassed Intel recently in market cap, making it the most valuable semiconductor company.

While Intel is still a much bigger company what has been driving Qualcomm is its success in the mobile space, one that Intel is still fighting for. It should get a bit of a boost when the second half of Microsoft’s Surface family of tablets, the Surface Pro arrive, since they are powered by Intel chips.Still it is increasingly important to Intel to establish itself as a major player in the mobile space as the PC market has matured and is no longer seeing robust growth.

Friday Grab Bag: Intel Disappoints, New Linux Tablet on the Horizon?

A half year after formally showing off its Google Glass technology at its developer show the company is now holding a pair of developer events that will center around glasses that will be held at the end of the month, according to Slashgear.

Both coasts will be represented, with one held in New York City and the other held in San Francisco. The event will center around developing for its Mirror API for the Glass technology and both will be two day affairs. The San Francisco event will be Jan. 28 and 29 while the New York one will run Feb. 1 and 2.

Other news around Project Glass involves a virtual touchpad that can be projected onto any surface and used to control the glasses. The company has applied for a patent that would call for a small laser that would be mounted on the glasses, according to Engaget.

Intel’s earnings disappoint
Intel has released its fourth quarter earnings with less than expected results and has predicted a soft year in 2013. Revenue was $13.48bn, down 3% from the same period a year ago. For the quarter it reported net income of $2.47bn, down from $3.36bn, in the year-ago period.

Revenue was $13.48bn, down 3% from the same period a year ago. Intel in October projected fourth-quarter revenue of $13.6 billion, plus or minus $500 million. Its core PC business was down 6% at $8.5bn from the previous year. It said that the PC is transitioning into tablets. The company said that it expects to increase its capital spending to $13bn in the current year.

Samsung Rumor predicts 8-inch Galaxy Note
Samsung appears ready to provide any size tablet a user could want and now the rumor mill is predicting that the company will soon be offering an 8-inch Galaxy Note as it expands that popular product family, according to Digital Trends and first reported in a Samsung News Blog called Sam Mobile.

It calls for the company to introduce the device to the world at the upcoming Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. It is expected to have a 1280 x 800 resolution screen and be available in two models, a16GB version and a 32GB model.

DaVinci Prepares Linux Tablet
Add one more contender to the slowly growing market of tablets that are capable of running the Linux operating system as DaVinci Mobile Technology is reported to have an offering that is a month away from the market. The tablet, called ‘Kite” is expected to be a dual operating system according to PC World.

It will be capable of running either Android 4.0 or Ubuntu 12.04 and will include a 10.1-inch display with 1920 x 1200 HD resolution and will be powered by a Samsung Exynos quad-core 1.4 GHz processor. It is expected to have WiFi b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.0, 2 GB RAM and 32 GB of internal storage.

Advanced Micro Devices Jumps into Tablet Space with Z-60

Advanced Micro Devices is staking its ground in the tablet space with the introduction earlier this week of the Z-60 Tablet chip as it seeks to become a player in this market as some of its traditional spaces such as desktop PCs continue to shrink.

The chip, also called Hondo, is the company’s latest attempt to establish itself in a market where devices either use a variant of an ARM chip such as the processors from Broadcom, Nvidia or Texas Instruments, develop their own processor like Apple and Samsung, or in growing numbers use Intel’s Atom processor family.

The Hondo chip is a low powered, 4.5 watt, dual core processor running at 1GGhz and the company has packed it with 80 integrated Radeon graphics processor cores, which will give tablets high-definition video and gaming capabilities. It will include support for DirectX 11 has the horsepower for high-definition 1080p displays.

The processor is expected to available later this month when Microsoft formally unveils its Windows 8 operating system for tablets and a host of hardware developers, including Microsoft, start selling or at least formally showing their tablets. Systems using these chips will only be able to run Windows 8 or Linux

Intel appears to have a lead in this race since its OEMs have already started showing finished products with Intel chips, however some of the documentation on developers sites does seem to indicate that they might also use AMD chips as well.

The competition should be good for customers since it could help drive the prices down on chips and that should lower overall systems prices. We can at least always hope.