20th > December > 2011 Archive
Apple wins skirmish in HTC-Google patent war
The US International Trade Commission has handed Apple a victory in its patent dispute with Android-phonemaker HTC, banning the Taiwanese company's infringing phones from importation into the US. The full impact of the victory's implications, however, remains to be seen.
Nissan Leaf battery powered electric car
ReviewSpending a couple of hours at the wheel of a new car at a press event is all well and good, but to really get under a vehicle's skin you need to live with the thing on a day-to-day basis. This is especially true of one with an alternative drive train.
CA handles La Perla's substantial assets
Luxury Italian undies biz La Perla is protecting its data assets from a tits-up by using CA's ARCserve backup software.
Atari and Square Enix cough to exposing users' privates
Atari has apologised to gamers following a security breach that exposed their names and email addresses, leaving users at heightened risk of spam as a result.
Public bodies told: Swapping data feels good, but you must be careful
Sharing data on public services could have serious consequences unless the material has been valued, maintained and protected and the original reasons for its collection have been taken into account, the Information Society Alliance (Eurim), has warned.
Sky follows BT in blocking Newzbin2
The internet service provider Sky cut off access to Newzbin2 last week following a court order. It is the second UK ISP to block Newzbin2 after a High Court ruling earlier this year forced BT to deploy filtering technology to prevent its customers accessing the site.
Five... friendly, free Android apps
Android App of the WeekEach too simple to warrant a full App of the Week write-up, these five dinky free programs caught my eye over during the past 12 months and have since taken up permanent residence on my Desire HD.
Sony PS Vita sales fall shy of 3DS launch volume
Mobile-mad Japanese gamers bought 321,400 PS Vita handheld consoles this past weekend, local market watcher Enterbrain has revealed.
Shareholders rage over Imation's incredible 88% plunge
How do you build a $226m company? Start with a $2bn one. This joke could apply to Imation, which could go the way of Kodak and turn shareholder value into dross, because its management, facing declining sales of old technology, is late to respond and now buying bum companies with crappy prospects.
Netflix UK to stream BBC shows
Netflix's UK content roster continues to grow. Today it said it had licensed a stack of BBC shows including Doctor Who and Top Gear.
LOHAN fires up sizzling thruster
VideoThings are moving apace at the Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) headquarters, and last weekend we did a first test firing of the proposed powerplanet for the Vulture 2 spaceplane.
Five firms to create HD-centric DRM for SD cards
Panasonic, Samsung, SanDisk, Sony and Toshiba are to develop a better DRM for memory cards.
EMC hikes drive prices, blames Thai flood tragedy
El Reg has been sent a copy of a letter from EMC to its Velocity channel partners saying disk drive prices will rise 5 to 15 per cent from 1 January, 2012.
Three more 'nauts prepare for space station housewarming
The second half of the International Space Station's Expedition 30 crew is getting ready to blast off tomorrow to dock with the station in time for Christmas.
2011's Best... compact cameras
Xmas Gift Guide2011 was the year when compact system cameras (CSC) really began to hit their stride. Late to this year’s party were the Nikon 1 J1 and V1 models, but we’re still waiting to on Canon to show its hand in this arena. More to the point, Canon has yet to deliver a successor to its revered PowerShot G12 which is showing its age now. A PowerShot Gx is rumoured, but we’ll not be seeing it this year, for sure.
BT, Scotland Yard form copper theft crackdown supersquad
BT is working with Scotland Yard in an effort to crack down on metal theft, which the Met said costs taxpayers £700m per year - not to mention the misery when power and telecoms cabling is nicked.
Mobiles forced to send premium-rate texts in new attack
Cybercrooks may be able to force mobiles to send premium-rate SMS messages or prevent them from receiving messages due to security weaknesses in mobile telecoms standards.
TalkTalk, 3UK scratched off Ofcom's Xmas card list
It's official: TalkTalk and 3UK had more complaints than any other Blighty-based telcos since communications' regulator Ofcom started publishing its league table displaying the good, the bad and the downright ugly.
Deutsche Telekom: 'FCC, DoJ didn't give AT&T deal a chance'
Deutsche Telekom, parent of T-Mobile USA, has hit out at US regulators over the collapse of its merger deal with AT&T in the US.
Seagate sucks hard disk biz from Samsung
It's done: Seagate has completed the transaction to acquire Samsung's hard disk drive business. Now it has to do the grunt work of integrating the two product lines.
HP also jacks up disk prices in Thai flood wake
We thought EMC was the first major enterprise supplier to raise disk drive prices after the Thailand floods. Not so. HP sent out a letter - pictured here - last month saying it was being forced to increase prices as a result of the hard drive shortage caused by the deadly floods in Thailand. Many of the country's disk assembling factories were inundated or destroyed by the rising waters, forcing up prices as the number of drives shipped in the last quarter fell well below expected targets.
Google needs a very thorough frisking, say antitrust senators
The Federal Trade Commission has been urged by two concerned US lawmakers to investigate Google's search business practices more thoroughly.
Anti-piracy laws will smash internet, US constitution - legal eagles
Legal experts are warning that the proposed PROTECT IP and the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) legislation, currently working their way through Congress, will damage the world's DNS system, cripple attempts to get better online security and violate free speech rights in the US constitution.
Apple gobbles iPhone, iPad flash chip baker
Reports are saying Apple has actually done it - Cupertino's gone and acquired flash controller and SSD startup Anobit for $500m as expected.
Archos tweaks 7in tablet to hit £180 price point
Archos has updated its Archos 70 7in Android tablet, upping the CPU speed, the touchscreen and the OS.
Tempt tech talent without Googlesque mega perks
Open ... and ShutForget Silicon Valley's talent shortage. The real tech talent wars are being waged beyond the spiritual home of high-tech - and everyone is losing. In fact, the greatest threat to the adoption of industry-changing technologies like Hadoop and Node.js may well be the dearth of talent capable of deploying them effectively.
HP woos IT shops with leasing deals
Hewlett-Packard has a new CEO in Meg Whitman, but it has the same fiscal year that ends in October and the same mis-match between its own quarters and those of the bulk of the companies in the world who buy its IT wares. Its major buyers all end their fiscal years in December. What's an IT vendor to do to bump up revenues? Provide generous financing and buy some time as well as pump up hardware sales.
Software bug fingered as cause of Aussie A330 plunge
The final report into the 2008 Qantas flight QF72, which unexpectedly dived twice during a routine flight, has blamed a combination of software and hardware errors for the incident.
Chip sales flat in 2011, will grow (a wee bit) in 2012
The prognosticators at Gartner have ranked the chip makers of the world by 2011 revenue and are calling the market for 2012, with a reasonably upbeat forecast for next year's chip sales, but – paradoxically – a dreadful forecast for companies that make the gear to bake the chips.
IBM: 'Your PC will read your mind by 2016'
IBM has released its annual predictions for the future of technology, and this year’s batch includes biometric security, replacing mice with brain sensors, and an end to the “digital divide” between those online and off.
AMD speed-bumps, unlocks chips for desktop, notebook
AMD has speed-bumped its A-Series APUs for desktops and notebooks, added an update to its AMD Steady Video tech, and for the first time made a pair of its CPU-GPU mashups overclockable.
Alcatel-Lucent's Malaysian slap over
Malaysian operators Axiata Group and Telekom Malaysia have lifted a year-long operating suspension on Alcatel-Lucent.
X-Men Origins: Wolverine pirate caged
A Bronx man found guilty of uploading a copy of X-Men Origins: Wolverine to a file-sharing service has been sentenced to a year in federal prison and another year of supervised release.
NewSat seeks $AU36m to get into orbit
Australian satellite communications company NewSat is raising $AU36 million to help accelerate its pending satellite launch, pay suppliers and strengthen its balance sheet.
AT&T's megablunder payout revealed
Details of AT&T's "we screwed the pooch" payout to Deutsche Telekom over the failed T-Mobile USA acquisition have emerged, and right ... about ... now ... AT&T chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson should be barricading himself in his corner office as pitchfork-brandishing shareholders demand his head on a platter.