'Apple's iOS 6 maps app is SHOCKING, rushed and half-baked'
Plus: 'We're trying to re-imagine the world with Windows 8'
Quotw This was the week when Microsoft chieftain Steve Ballmer tried to convince everyone that 2012 will be "the most epic year in Microsoft history".
And how did the chair-tossing potty-mouthed bossman attempt to prove this glorious epoch will be achieved? Well, it wasn't by suggesting its Surface fondleslabs should be sold at an affordable price, anyway.
Clearly referring to the small percentage of people who have a tidy disposable income during the recession or perhaps the people who sell their body parts to afford the latest tech, Ballmer said:
I think most people would tell you that the iPad is not a super expensive device. [When] people offer cheaper, they do less. They look less good, they're chintzier, they're cheaper.
If you say to somebody, would you use one of the 7-inch tablets, would somebody ever use a Kindle to do their homework? The answer is no; you never would. It's just not a good enough product. It doesn't mean you might not read a book on it.
On top of this sagacious observation, Ballmer added that this was Microsoft's year because of Windows 8:
Windows 95 was certainly the biggest thing in the last 20 years until now. I think Windows 8 certainly surpasses it.
We're trying to really re-imagine the world from the ground up with Windows 8.
While Ballmer's dreams of an illustrious year may be a tad optimistic, the Microsoft name was enough to give a brief lift to Research In Motion's share price. That is, before people realised that rather than a lucrative contract embedding BlackBerry tech in Windows mobes, the Canadian firm was going to pay Redmond for some patents related to the exFAT file system.
A Microsoft rep said:
Today's smartphones and tablets require the capacity to display richer images and data than traditional cellular phones. This agreement with RIM highlights how a modern file system, such as exFAT can help directly address the specific needs of customers in the mobile industry.
Indeed, though unless RIM finds a way of addressing the specific needs of customers, this may be a shorter licensing agreement than either side hopes for.
Speaking of tech firms that don't always know what their customers want, HP has said it should make a phone. Despite its poor showing in mobile devices with the TouchPad, a smartphone is the way to go for the tech leviathan.
Boss Meg Whitman said:
My view is we have to ultimately offer a smartphone, because in many countries of the world, that is your first computing device. There will be countries in the world where people will never own a tablet or a PC or a desktop. They will do everything on a smartphone.
This week also featured Talk-Like-a-Pirate day on the 19th during which nearly every Reg sub-headline was boarded and rewritten by cutlass-waving sub-editors. And in what must have been a tribute to the annual celebration of sea dog lingo, a German Pirate Party executive has hung up her eyepatch and hook. Julia Schramm, who once described intellectual property as "disgusting", found herself rapidly changing her mind when she got a €100,000 book deal with Random House.
Now sites hosting pirated copies of her book Click Me have been issued with DMCA takedown notices. Somewhat hypocritical as Mark Splinter of grassroots copyright campaign Copylike pointed out:
That awkward feeling when you realise the stack of cash you received was part of a commercial contract against your beliefs? Priceless.
Fanbois, pundits and tech reviewers got their first chance to
adulate lambast the spanking-new extra-shiny iPhone 5 and iOS 6 this week and Apple's new Maps app was (nearly) universally panned as mere shite.
The fruity firm pulled Google's much-loved Maps from its latest iDevice, and replaced it with its own app packed with TomTom data. Which would be fine if the thing wasn't occasionally inaccurate and somewhat shoddy.
One fanboi moaned:
The maps app is shocking! It looks rushed, half-baked, delivers a really poor user experience. Compare the aerial photograph with that of google maps for areas outside London, Cardiff, Portsmouth...
Another pointed out:
My home town (pop. 25k) is labelled about a mile north of where it should be, and a sub-district of my home town is in the place of the center of my town!
Shockingly, it has also emerged that Apple might be artificially creating a market for its iPhone 5s by PRETENDING THERE AREN'T THAT MANY OF THEM. This unheard-of tactic had to be resorted as the company worried that the mobe might not be that great actually.
Reg clandestine source Dry Throat explained the strategy:
Don't let anyone have many. That way you're not saying, 'hey, buy our mediocre and really expensive offering'. You're saying, 'see this? Over here? Where everyone else is looking? You can't have this'.
That way if you do get hold of one, you feel really pleased regardless of the fact it's not much good. And if you can't get one, you really want one. It's so simple - but so effective.