10th > May > 2012 Archive

Fyx Logo

Kiwi ISP offers geo-block workaround

A newly-launched New Zealand ISP, FYX, promises to try and avoid geo-blocking regimes that restrict access to certain content to residents of a select group of nations.
Simon Sharwood, 10 May 2012


It would be nice if it were true, but El Reg has difficulty believing that this video of a VW concept hover-car in China is genuine:
Richard Chirgwin, 10 May 2012

Telstra brings configurable QoS to IP networks

Telstra has added user-configurable quality of service to its NextIP network and has even reached out to its Trademark lawyers to give it a flashy name: Application Assured Networking™.
Simon Sharwood, 10 May 2012

Amazon Web Services gets into the events business

Amazon Web Services seems to have reached the point at which it has so many customers it can go down the well-worn road of milking them for more cash by gathering them in one place providing days of valuable hands-on training and engagement-deepening meatspace meet-ups, in the form of a new event called AWSre:invent.
Simon Sharwood, 10 May 2012
anonymous logo

Anonymous takes the Kremlin offline in Putin protest

Hacktivist group Anonymous has been up to its old tricks again, this time briefly taking out the web site of the Russian president as a show of support for the growing opposition to newly re-crowned leader Vladimr Putin.
Phil Muncaster, 10 May 2012

NSW unveils “foundations” for integrated ticketing

Transport for NSW has installed new displays on ticket barriers at several Sydney railway stations, and says the new units “will set the right foundations for the introduction of Opal electronic ticketing."
Simon Sharwood, 10 May 2012
NRL Logo

Optus to appeal TV Now decision

Optus has decided to take the fight over its personal video recorder as a service to the High Court, after lower courts recently decreed the service breaches copyright.
Simon Sharwood, 10 May 2012

Asian mobile web traffic TRIPLED in past two years

The percentage of users accessing the web from their mobile device has almost tripled in Asia since 2010 and in some countries mobile web traffic now accounts for nearly half of all browsing, according to new research from site monitoring firm Pingdom.
Phil Muncaster, 10 May 2012
Apple iPad 2

Ape Apps help Orangutans talk to people

Orangutans at Miami Zoo are using iPads to communicate with humans.
Simon Sharwood, 10 May 2012
BeagleBoard ARM PC

Best and the Rest: ARM Mini PCs

Product round-up
Liam Proven, 10 May 2012

Nimbus boots EVA out of Mitsubishi

Mitsubishi Power Systems' Americas (MPSA) says its SAP applications positively fly using flash arrays from an industry newbie – after being hamstrung on HP storage.
Chris Mellor, 10 May 2012

HMRC's real-time PAYE pilot trousers 310 more employers

A further 310 employers have joined HMRC's pilot of Real Time Information (RTI) for PAYE (Pay As You Earn).

LOHAN Playmonaut jets off to Blighty

Our heroic Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) Playmonaut has just jetted off to Blighty to join the Southampton University postgrads who are tackling the design of the Vulture 2 spaceplane.
Lester Haines, 10 May 2012

Orange launches TV app to snag wandering eyes

Orange has launched a TV-enhancing iPhone app that is synchronised to 25 Freeview channels. The operator hopes it will keep the fiddling-generation focused on big screen content while catching their straying eyeballs where necessary.
Bill Ray, 10 May 2012

BT's cost-slashing plumps up earnings but full-year sales drop 4%

BT's Openreach division was the only wing of the company's business to up its sales figures compared with the same period a year earlier, but all other areas of the national telco's biz saw revenue decline for the year ended 31 March 2012.
Kelly Fiveash, 10 May 2012

At last! A use for Blighty's phone-boxes: Free Wi-Fi hotspots

Spectrum Interactive is opening up its phone-box-based hotspots around London, offering free access to anyone prepared to share their contact details and download a coupon or two.
Bill Ray, 10 May 2012
Samsung 55in OLED TV

Samsung says 55in OLED über TV 'ready'

It pays to read the small print, folks. Samsung once again showed off its 55in OLED TV today, but if you think it has gone into mass-production, you'd be wrong - it's merely "ready for mass-production", the South Korean giant admitted.
Tony Smith, 10 May 2012

Horde of customers storms Dixons – too late to save 2012 sales

A late flurry of consumer spending in the UK boosted Dixons Retail's Q4 sales but came too late to prevent a full-year fiscal 2012 decline, the firm revealed in a trading statement.
Paul Kunert, 10 May 2012

Microsoft digs Doppler to effect gesture detection

Microsoft Research took motion detection to new levels this week when it unveiled a new gesture recognition system for laptops.
Caleb Cox, 10 May 2012

VMware whips out whopping rebate in pursuit of virty virgins

VMware has ratcheted up rebates for certified resellers who sign up virtualisation virgins - prospective clients that most likely reside in the SME market.
Paul Kunert, 10 May 2012

Norwegian teens arrested over SOCA DDoS attack

Norwegian police have charged two teenagers suspected of taking part in denial of service attacks against the UK's Serious Organised Crime Agency and other targets.
John Leyden, 10 May 2012

Boffins crack on with ultimate roboass

Japanese scientists have cracked one of robotics' untouched areas: they have unveiled a mechanical bum that not only look realistic - apparently - but tense, twitch and respond to touch in the same way a real rear would.
Caleb Cox, 10 May 2012

Keep out of the Olympics' way, earn a haircut from TfL app

In the race to get London's road and tube network ready for the Olympics, Transport for London has endorsed a new app called re:route: a map app with reward vouchers.
Anna Leach, 10 May 2012

Facebook launches App Store Center

Facebook is launching an App Center to recommend mobile applications based on demographic preferences as well as user ratings, just as long as they're tied into users' Facebook credentials – with a view to monetising the process eventually, of course.
Bill Ray, 10 May 2012

€165bn in e-commerce every year - and not a plastic card in sight

Alternatives to traditional credit and debit cards are now processing €165bn ($214bn, £133bn) annually – 22 per cent of global e-commerce – and that's just the start as the next generation of consumers grows up without seeing a plastic card.
Bill Ray, 10 May 2012
Skydrive iOS app icon

Microsoft SkyDrive

iOS App of the WeekI looked at SkyDrive back in early 2011 and was impressed by the 25GB of free cloud storage that it offered. Unfortunately, it also suffered from the Microsoft’s traditional ‘designed by committee’ syndrome, and lacked the simplicity of rivals such as Dropbox and, more recently, Apple’s iCloud.
Cliff Joseph, 10 May 2012

Supersize shifting sand dunes stalk surface of Mars

PicNASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has found the wind blows much more fiercely across the surface of the Red Planet than previously thought - reshaping sand dunes at around the same rate as those on Earth.
Brid-Aine Parnell, 10 May 2012
Sony Internet TV

OLED to take 0.02% of TV sales through 2014

Samsung may be keen to tout OLED as the future of television tech, but it'll be a good few years yet before sales of organic LED screens come to match plasma and even CRT, let alone LCD.
Tony Smith, 10 May 2012

China admits plot to conquer the world ... with its own 4G

The Chinese government has demanded more trials of its homegrown 4G mobile broadband standard TD-LTE in hope of eventually rolling it out across the globe, according to China Daily.
Phil Muncaster, 10 May 2012
Wi-Fi blocking wallpaper

Wi-Fi warping wallpaper hardens homes to hackers

Tinfoil hat wearer? Here's what to slap on your walls: wallpaper that keeps Wi-Fi signals boxed in - and, maybe, alien brain-probe waves out.
Caleb Cox, 10 May 2012

Quantum shrinks, hopes to swell up after Big Data booster shot

Storage software and hardware provider Quantum Corp is shrinking – not a lot, but it's visible – yet it wants to grow so very much. It has decided to ship Amplidata object storage technology for big data as its latest growth strategy. Will it succeed?
Chris Mellor, 10 May 2012

Mozilla and Google blast IE-only Windows on ARM

Mozilla and Google are crying foul over Microsoft restrictions blocking rivals from Windows 8 on ARM, due later this year.
Gavin Clarke, 10 May 2012

Sony blames record $5.7bn loss on everything but Sony

Disasters both natural and manmade have led to tech megacorp Sony reporting a record loss for the fiscal year ending in March.
Brid-Aine Parnell, 10 May 2012

Did dicky power supply silence climate-change probe Envisat?

PicThe European Space Agency has all but given up hope of contacting its long-lived Envisat mission, a month after the satellite went silent.
Brid-Aine Parnell, 10 May 2012

EMC chugs down flash freshman XtremIO for $430m

Israeli business newspaper Globes is reporting EMC has bought Israeli-headquarted NAND array startup XtremIO for $430m, giving EMC boss Joe Tucci a nice flashy toy to brandish at EMC World in Las Vegas later this month.
Chris Mellor, 10 May 2012

'Fake Carla Bruni' Twitter account spreads Thatcher death rumour

A fake celebrity Twitter account posing as that of outgoing French first lady Carla Bruni has been used to spread false rumours that former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher had died.
John Leyden, 10 May 2012
Double Fine Adventure

Ten... crowd-funded games from veteran devs

Project round-upThe world is awash innovative ideas and clever product blueprints, although the folk who come up with them are often too penniless to take things further. Which is why fundraising site Kickstarter has been such a success of late.
Caleb Cox, 10 May 2012

Root canal surgery officially more desirable than cloud migration

Some IT decision makers would prefer to undergo root canal surgery than deal with migrating their business to a private or public cloud.
Paul Kunert, 10 May 2012

Enormous British PC mountain finally shovelled out onto markets

UK PC sales into the channel grew slightly in Q1, indicating that distributors have finally shifted the ageing inventory lingering from early 2011.
Paul Kunert, 10 May 2012

Cameron's F-35 U-turn: BAE Systems still calls the shots at No 10

CommentSo there it is: done. As this is written, defence minister Phillip Hammond is on his feet in the House of Commons, trying to justify the fact that he and his boss, David Cameron, have decided that the Royal Navy's new aircraft carrier (maybe carriers) will not now have any catapults or arrester gear in order to save money. This means that the only aeroplanes able to fly from British decks will be the F-35B supersonic stealth jumpjets.
Lewis Page, 10 May 2012

Pirate stomping by Google et Cie won't work, says expert

Plans developed by search engines that would define how rights-holders engage with them over the removal of links to copyright infringing content seek to introduce new thresholds over notice and takedown standards that EU law does not require, an expert has said.
OUT-LAW.COM, 10 May 2012

British 4G mobile data rollout 'will mean NO TELLY for 2m homes'

A pressure group campaigning for high-quality broadcasting has warned that 4G phone networks could knock out TV in one in ten UK homes - and by the time anyone notices it will be too late to fix.
Bill Ray, 10 May 2012

Carriers, prepare to bleed: EU pops a cap on data roaming

The EU has renewed its caps on mobile roaming, this time including a cap on data roaming and a promise to let travellers choose their roaming carrier by 2014, all coming in from 1 July.
Bill Ray, 10 May 2012

Apple OS X update puts elderly Flash out of its misery

Apple has pushed out a slew of security updates for Macs running Snow Leopard (OS X 10.6) and Lion (OS X 10.7).
John Leyden, 10 May 2012

IBM taps new execs to run Power Systems, mainframes

The executive who has been running IBM's combined Power Systems and System z mainframe units has taken a new high-level position working out Big Blue's overall strategy for the future for new CEO Ginni Rometty, and the company has appointed new leaders for its Power and mainframe units in the wake of that appointment.

New SGI CEO builds firewall around unprofitable sales

SGI tapped a new CEO, Jorge Titinger, back at the end of February to get the company back on an even keel, and in the wake of SGI's reporting its financial results for its third quarter of fiscal 2012, Titinger conceded that he has his work cut out for him because SGI, like many other server makers from time to time, has been focusing a little too much on revenue growth and not enough on the bottom line.
Otellini with wafer - IDF 2003

Intel CEO predicts DOOM for fab industry and competitors

The semiconductor industry is at a major inflection point Intel's CEO Paul Otellini predicted today at the company's analyst day, with the increasing cost of manufacturing causing a shake-out among the biggest chip players that, he said, would only leave two or three companies at the leading edge of chip design.
Iain Thomson, 10 May 2012
hpcloud side teaser

HP opens up public cloud to public beta

As El Reg told you it would a month ago, Hewlett-Packard today has opened up its HP Cloud Services public cloud – aka HP Cloud because by definition a cloud is a service, right? – for a full-on beta onslaught from John Q Public.
Telstra and Optus Logos

Optus CEO: Our ads pay for TV, so let TV Now live

Broadcasters should support, rather than opposing, Optus’ TV Now service, the carrier’s CEO believes, because Optus is a major TV advertiser.
Richard Chirgwin, 10 May 2012
bing google search

Redmond revamp: Bing gets social bling

Microsoft is taking yet-another swipe at Google, unveiling a revamped Bing that Redmond says will do a better job of separating social search from the main body of results.
Richard Chirgwin, 10 May 2012
Acer Aspire S3 Ultrabook

Intel plans massive push around touchy-feely Ultrabooks

Intel is planning its biggest marketing campaign since the launch of Centrino in 2003 in an attempt to make Ultrabook laptops and tablet-hybrids more attractive to buyers.
Iain Thomson, 10 May 2012

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