Andrew Orlowski

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 Putting text-reading robots to work. Arthur_Caranta, CC BY-SA

‘Peak Samsung’ isn't

Strong sales of its S7 flagships have boosted Samsung to its highest quarterly profit for two years, the company stated yesterday. The earnings guidance contradicts experts who predicted ages ago that we had reached “Peak Samsung”. The group’s overall profit should be around ₩8.1tn ($7bn), up 17.4 per cent from the same …
Andrew Orlowski, 07 Jul 2016

So. Farewell then, BlackBerry Classic. You were a classic ... of sorts

BlackBerry has confirmed it won’t make any more BlackBerry Classics, marking the end of an era. US Senate staff were told BlackBerry was ceasing production of all BB10 devices but BlackBerry denies this, and insists that only the Classic production line has halted for good. “It has been an incredible workhorse device for …
Andrew Orlowski, 06 Jul 2016
Prison

UK.gov rolls out 10 years' chokey for industrial scale copyright pirates

Digital Economy Bill As it promised in the Queen’s Speech – and as first revealed here – legislation will extend the maximum penalty for industrial scale online copyright infringement from two to 10 years. This is in the hope that criminal copyright cases are actually brought under copyright law. Because the maximum sentence is currently only two …
Andrew Orlowski, 06 Jul 2016

Wealthy youngsters more likely to be freetards than anyone else – study

The well-groomed throng of bourgeois protesters that shunned the weekly Waitrose shop and headed for London’s Parliament Square on Saturday had something in common other than a common desire to remain in the EU. The demographic that closely mirrors keen Remain voters is more likely to download content illegally than any other UK …
Andrew Orlowski, 05 Jul 2016

Obi Worldphone MV1: It's striking, it's solid. Aaaand... we've run out of nice things to say

Review Oh, Obi. With your striking Nordic vibe, and Cyanogen OS, we did so want to like you. San Francisco newcomer Obi has released its first Western phone into the UK, and it’s is an expression of what the startup is all about: making budget Androids that don’t look budget at all. Designed by Beats headphone and Apple industrial …
Andrew Orlowski, 05 Jul 2016
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Huawei promo photo goof

Huawei has removed a promotional image for its Leica-branded smartphones that was actually shot by a costly professional Canon SLR kit. The Google+ post boasted that, "We managed to catch a beautiful sunrise with Deliciously Ella. The #HuaweiP9’s dual Leica cameras makes taking photos in low light conditions like this a pleasure …
Andrew Orlowski, 05 Jul 2016
MIPS Creator CI20 development board

Not your Imagination: Britain’s other chip giant posts biggest ever loss

The UK’s other chip designer, Imagination, posted a £63.2m loss before tax for the year to April 2016 as it radically restructures its business. DAB radio business unit Pure Technologies, which has been up for sale but with no buyer yet, contributed £7.9m to the loss on revenues of £18m. The IMG Systems services unit is also …
Andrew Orlowski, 05 Jul 2016
Gold Plate My BlackBerry Passport

New phones rumoured as BlackBerry cans BB10 production

Federal government staff in Washington DC have their own private underground metro system but they might not be getting any more BlackBerrys. A recently uncovered memo appears to tell United States Senate staff they’ll no longer be equipped with the once ubiquitous BlackBerry phones because they are to be discontinued. The …
Andrew Orlowski, 04 Jul 2016

Martha Lane Fox: Brexit is all about MEEEEeeee!

Comment Some people think the main issue in the UK’s decision to leave the European Union was sovereignty and self-determination. Others think it was migration. Others think it was class. But you’re all wrong. The main issue in Brexit is Martha Lane Fox – and we have her word for it. Into this Broken Brexited Britain strides the niece …
Andrew Orlowski, 04 Jul 2016

ZTE Axon 7: A surprise flagship contender

Hands On Few people would have placed ZTE as being in the flagship Android race this year in Europe, but its Axon 7 makes it a surprising and strong contender. You'll know the script by now: buy a Chinese manufactured Android, get top-of-the-range features, and save £100-150 over a big brand HTC, Samsung or Sony flagship. Or even more …
Andrew Orlowski, 04 Jul 2016
London, United Kingdom - June 23, 2016: British Referendum. A voting station in inner London is the grand entrance to St Matthew's Church. UK is voting to stay or leave the EU. pHOTO Ms Jane Campbell/SHUTTERSTOCK - EDITORIAL USE ONLY

Pollster who called the EU referendum right: No late Leave swing after all

Analysis The EU referendum was a catastrophe for opinion pollsters. Remain’s official pollster, Populus, predicted a ten point margin of victory. Banks commissioned their own private polls, and also predicted victory, only to lose billions within hours as the strength of the Leave vote became clear. However one pollster stands out – …
Andrew Orlowski, 01 Jul 2016
Cartoon - Private SNAFU

Peter Gabriel-backed music startup goes titsup, takes £500k of your money with it

A music licensing startup backed by Peter Gabriel has gone into receivership, Music Week reports. The notice was filed on June 20th. CueSongs promised “frictionless music licensing for online broadcast” and was run by Ed Averdieck, who had a stint at Nokia’s Comes With Music. CueSongs handled sync licensing, the burgeoning …
Andrew Orlowski, 29 Jun 2016
axon 7

ZTE flagship elbows aside Xiaomi

Xiaomi was expected to be the biggest arrival into the European phone market this year, but ZTE may have just grabbed the laurels. While Xiaomi is entangled with IP worries, delaying a European push, ZTE has steamed in with an attractive Android flagship, the Axon 7 - launched this week in Paris this week - one that you can …
Andrew Orlowski, 29 Jun 2016
Logs and an axe

Parliament takes axe to 2nd EU referendum petition

Analysis A petition to nullify the UK’s EU referendum and hold another appear to be riddled with fraudulent data. Raw data examined reveals that many of the participants come from outside the UK, or use IP addresses outside the UK. Only UK or British citizens and residents can create or sign a petition, according to the rules. You can …
Andrew Orlowski, 27 Jun 2016

Don't laugh: Ofcom's a model for post-Brexit Europe

BREXIT With a stunned Europe absorbing the departure of the second biggest member of the EU, our much-criticised Ofcom could provide a guiding light for new ways of co-operating. Ofcom receives plenty of stick here at The Register: most recently for its handling of OpenReach and its insistence on a four-network mobile market, which …
Andrew Orlowski, 24 Jun 2016
London, United Kingdom - June 23, 2016: British Referendum. A voting station in inner London is the grand entrance to St Matthew's Church. UK is voting to stay or leave the EU. pHOTO Ms Jane Campbell/SHUTTERSTOCK - EDITORIAL USE ONLY

PM resigns as Britain votes to leave EU

BREXIT The UK has voted to leave the European Union, confounding the polls, the "experts" and the British establishment in the biggest turnout for a vote here in 24 years. Prime Minister David Cameron announced his resignation at 8:30am this morning. The count stands at 51.9 per cent Leave, and 48.1 per cent remain – and more than a …
Andrew Orlowski, 24 Jun 2016
A car pulled over near a hazard sign on a country road. Photo by Shutterstock

BlackBerry's turnaround stalls

BlackBerry announced further losses today as its comeback plan snagged on adjustments to the books. Revenue was down to $400m (GAAP) for the quarter, down from $658m. But the company made significant balance sheet adjustments including a one-time asset asset impairment charge of $501m, and an inventory write down of $41m, …
Andrew Orlowski, 23 Jun 2016
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Huawei taps ex-Nokia devs for 'secret phone OS project'

Just when you thought the platform wars had settled down into a cosy duopoly, Huawei is reported to be working on “an alternative mobile operating system”, according to reports. “The team working on the project is based in Scandinavia and includes ex-Nokia employees,” The Information scooped. The secret project is said to be …
Andrew Orlowski, 22 Jun 2016

Happy Mappiversary, Ordnance Survey

The Ordnance Survey celebrates its 225th birthday this week, and is commemorating it with two new custom retro-styled maps. Both marry historically accurate styles to modern data. On 21 June 1791, the then "Board of Ordnance" purchased a Ramsden theodolite to survey Britain and protect from a French invasion, hence the 225th …
Andrew Orlowski, 22 Jun 2016
Ireland and Great Britain map, image via Shutterstock

Three non-obvious reasons to Vote Leave on the 23rd

Comment I'm just about old enough to remember the 1975 Europe referendum. Old enough to remember leaflets thudding onto the doormat (for every 'NO', there were three for ‘YES’). Most vividly of all I remember my father and our Austrian GP, who lived a few doors down in Teesside, discussing the EEC as he walked his dog past our house. …
Andrew Orlowski, 22 Jun 2016

Who'll guard your personal data post-Brexit?

Britons should remain in the European Union to protect their data, says Rafael Laguna of Open-Xchange. He's not alone. "If the UK chooses to diverge its data protection laws from the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), it will become more difficult to export data to and from the EU and UK (without putting in place …
Andrew Orlowski, 22 Jun 2016

Microsoft’s IFTTT-alike Flow seeps into the iPhone

Animating cats in Hypercard, creating batch files (or even baroque Lotus 1-2-3 macros) – writing your own scripts was once an integral part of personal computing. If an application didn’t have its own arcane scripting language, it didn’t really cut it. Recently Android automation tools such as Tasker, IFTTT and Workflow for …
Andrew Orlowski, 21 Jun 2016

Apple pollutes data about you to protect your privacy. But it might not be enough

Comment At its WWDC developer event last week, Apple strongly emphasised the difference between data harvesters such as Google and Facebook, and its own privacy practices. It isn’t a new line, as Apple hasn’t been on reliant on digital advertising as these consumer data processing giants. But with Microsoft joining Google and Facebook …
Andrew Orlowski, 21 Jun 2016

Meet the 1,000 core chip that can be powered by an AA battery

Six years after University of Glasgow researchers first achieved the feat, an American university has demonstrated a 1,000 core processor. While Glasgow used a FPGA, the “kilocore”silicon produced by the University of California Davis’ VLSI* Computation Lab differs by putting 1,000 independently programmable cores on a single …
Andrew Orlowski, 20 Jun 2016

Apple and Android wearables: What iceberg? It’s full steam ahead!

Many analysts were expecting big improvements to Apple’s watchOS platform last week. Just like they were expecting big announcements around Android Wear last month. But nothing much happened. “It's not the ground-breaking revamp many were hoping for,” CCS Insight’s George Jijiashvili wrote of Wear 2.0, describing the tweaks as …
Andrew Orlowski, 17 Jun 2016