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Microsoft Surfaces 2 New Tablet Models
September 23, 2013
Microsoft's new Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 tablets are faster and have more battery life than their predecessors. However, "the crux of the matter for Microsoft remains the same," said ABI Research's Jeff Orr, and that is "finding an audience that's interested in hearing what Microsoft has to say that positions it as unique and valuable compared to Apple, Android players or its own partners."
In-App Purchases to Steal the Mobile-App Revenue Show
September 20, 2013
Mobile apps have enjoyed phenomenal and increasing popularity in recent years, but what we've seen so far is just the beginning, according to a new Gartner report. Specifically, mobile app stores will see annual downloads reach 102 billion in 2013, the research firm reported on Thursday, up from 64 billion in 2012. Total revenue in 2013, meanwhile, will reach $26 billion, up from $18 billion in 2012.
Adobe to Give Creatives New Gizmos
September 18, 2013
Adobe will pair hardware devices with its creative software suite next year when it launches a cloud pen and a digital ruler that work with tablets. The company plans to release its Mighty digital pen, a thin-tipped stylus designed to help digital artists have more control over their creativity while drawing on a tablet screen. The pressure-sensitive pen comes with color and tip tools.
Syrian Rebels Use iPads to Target Weapons
September 18, 2013
Syrian rebels have taken to using an iPad app to help guide mortar fire. Rebels were photographed using an iPad reportedly equipped with the iHandy Level Free app, deployed as a method for ensuring that the mortar tube is level. Novel though this may be, reporter Paul Szoldra, who served in the U.S. Marine Corps for nine years, is dubious of the iPad's effect.
iSketchnote: an iPad Cover That Digitizes Your Paper Scribbles
September 18, 2013
There's no denying the popularity of Apple's iPad and its Android-based kin, not just with adults but with kids as well. Now, for all those parents out there who wish their kids would play with something else once in a while -- simple drawing paper and pens, for instance -- a new Kickstarter funding project offers fresh hope. Enter iSketchnote, a new effort that promises to bring sketch functionality to Apple's tablet.
Dell Shifts to a Different Venue With New Win 8.1 Tablet
September 12, 2013
Dell on Wednesday revived its dormant "Venue" brand by unveiling a Windows 8.1 tablet that will run on Intel's new Bay Trail system on a chip. Featuring an 8-inch screen, the device was announced at the Intel Developer Forum being held in San Francisco this week. Few other details about the upcoming device were disclosed.
Popboardz Takes the Snores Out of Presentations
September 09, 2013
A great presentation is usually linear, with a beginning, a middle, and an end -- but not always. Enter PopBoardz, an iPad-based presentation and project collaboration app. PopBoardz is designed more for ways to express projects than presentations, to share what's of most relevant interest in the room -- not a Keynote or PowerPoint slide that's simply the next item in a long line of slides.
How to Repair a Broken Screen on a Tablet or Phone
September 05, 2013
Breaking the screen on your mobile device doesn't have to mean a brand new, expensive bit of kit. It's actually quite easy, and cheap, to replace the glass once you get the hang of it. A tablet touchscreen can cost about $50 if you perform the work. I've replaced a few touchscreens on my roughly handled devices and found that tablet and phone construction both rely on the same basic concepts.
Acer's Liquid S2 Phablet Arrives Early at 4K Party
September 03, 2013
Against the backdrop of the IFA 2013 trade show in Berlin on Monday, Acer introduced its new Liquid S2 smartphone, a 6-inch full HD handset capable of capturing 4K video. The Liquid S2 has the distinction of being the first smartphone with officially announced 4K Ultra HD recording capability. Its 6-inch screen offers full HD with IPS technology and 1080p resolution.
US Open Tennis App Is a Smash
September 03, 2013
Second-screen or only screen, the official USTA US Open Tennis Championships for iPad app brings some of the greatest hardcourt tennis in the world into your hands, wherever you happen to be. Right there, the app starts off on a great footing for tennis fans. Fortunately, through nimble footwork and a lot of great serving, the app does a decent job of keeping you updated on all the action.
World War 3: The Cyber-Risk of a Missile Attack on Syria
September 02, 2013
As I write this, the U.S. has deployed a battle group to Syria in preparation for a missile strike against its government, and Russia has deployed what appears to be a counter force. What most seem not to be factoring in is that Syria has already fired its warning shot with attacks on Twitter and The New York Times, at least. I say "at least," because reporting of attacks isn't comprehensive.
Amazon Gives Devs 1-Click to Woo Them All
August 27, 2013
Amazon on Tuesday released the Mobile Associates API, new software that allows app developers to create ads for Amazon products with one-click purchasing. The new release is an extension of Amazon Associates, an affiliate program created by the online retailer in 1996. Under the mobile guidelines, developers can set up ads with specific Amazon products or categories that fit into the context of the app.
The Supersized Smartphones Cometh
August 19, 2013
There's no doubt phablets have become increasingly commonplace in the mobile computing arena, but several new devices promise to take the tablet-smartphone hybrids to bigger size extremes than ever. Samsung, for instance, announced on Monday that it is bringing its Galaxy Mega smartphone -- featuring a 6.3-inch screen -- to the United States market.
Apple's Not-So-Good Week
August 14, 2013
Uh oh, Apple. Carl Icahn -- the activist shareholder and spoiler of many corporate deals, the latest being Dell's attempt to go private -- has announced to the world that he has amassed "a large position" in your stock. This news came via a tweet from Icahn on Tuesday afternoon, touting not only his position in Apple but also his belief that the company is "extremely undervalued."
Desperately Seeking Innovation
August 07, 2013
Apple may have won the battle, but it is in danger of losing the war. The battle was last Saturday's veto by the Obama administration of the International Trade Commission's decision to ban certain Apple products that it found to have infringed Samsung's patents. As for the war, that would be Apple's long struggle to preserve its reputation for delivering startling innovation.
iPad Challengers Catching Up
August 06, 2013
Worldwide tablet shipments slowed during the second quarter, possibly because consumers are awaiting a next-generation iPad, according to a report from IDC. Vendors shipped 45.1 million devices in the second quarter of 2013, the firm reported -- a 9.7 percent dip from the first three months of the year. However, worldwide shipments were up more than 59 percent from the same period a year ago.
11th Hour Veto Saves Older iPhones, iPads From ITC Ban
August 05, 2013
The Obama administration has overturned a decision by the International Trade Commission to ban the import of certain older Apple products after it found that they infringed on certain Samsung patents. The administration made the announcement on Saturday, one day before the ban was set to take effect. U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman supplied several reasons for vetoing the import ban.
Microsoft's $100 Surface Pro Discount May Not Mean Much
August 05, 2013
Microsoft has knocked $100 off the price of its Intel-powered Surface Pro tablet, which features a full version of Windows 8. The discount comes on the heels of last month's price cut of its Windows Surface RT tablet. The offer, available directly from the Microsoft Store through Aug. 29, applies to the 64-GB and 128-GB versions of the Surface Pro, which will sell for $800 and $900, respectively.
Cool FPS Nav Doesn't Rescue The Drowning's Sinking Vision
August 05, 2013
The Drowning is an evolutionary new first-person shooter iOS game. It boasts a graphically rich post-apocalyptic world where an ecological disaster has turned millions of people into naked-but-genderless zombie-like monsters with bald skullish heads and claw hands. They try to kill you. You try to survive by shooting them or bludgeoning them when they get too close, and you have to reload.
Apple May Have a Rainbow of Retina-Display Minis Under Wraps
August 02, 2013
The next iPad mini, expected to debut in the December quarter, may have a high-resolution display and come in an assortment of colors other than black and white. The switch to Apple's famous Retina screen would bring the next-gen mini in line with the company's other iOS products -- and this isn't the first hint that Apple may be adding more color to its iOS line.
Facebook Reaches for Mobile Gaming's Brass Ring
July 30, 2013
Ever since Zynga and Facebook parted ways last fall, there's been speculation that Facebook might launch its own gaming intiative. Sure enough, the social network this week announced its own Mobile Games Publishing platform, an effort that's designed to give more visibility to small and medium-size developers of mobile games.
Tech Industry Closes Ranks Behind Apple as ITC Ban Looms
July 29, 2013
The Business Software Alliance reportedly is pushing to overturn the U.S. International Trade Commission's ban against older iPhones and iPads, maintaining that it would set a dangerous precedent. When the ITC makes a decision to ban a particular product for import into the U.S., it is fast and usually final. That, after all, is what companies like about the ITC.
The Case for a Bigger, Badder iPad
July 25, 2013
I'm wondering if we're not heading toward a larger iPad. First, Mac sales were down a bit last quarter. No big deal -- there haven't been any major upgrades, and the MacBook Air upgrade came late in June. Sold well, apparently. While Apple's Mac sales haven't been slipping and sliding like PC sales, clearly an awful lot of traditional computing has shifted to smartphones and tablets.
Google Sticks It to the Home Entertainment Market
July 24, 2013
Google on Wednesday unveiled a new Nexus 7 as part of its latest assault on the market for the connected living room. Another prong of that attack is Chromecast, a streaming content stick that plugs into a TV set's HDMI socket and lets users stream videos and other content seamlessly between the TV and any connected device, ranging from smartphones to tablets to laptops.

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