Articles about Competition

Crystal ball. Pic: Shutterstock

The stunted physical SAN market – Dell man gives Wikibon forecasts his blessing

Analysis Current thinking among vendors with hyper-converged and converged infrastructure offerings is that physical SANs are in decline and their market is shrinking. Chad Sakac, Converged Platforms Division president at Dell EMC, is the latest high-profile prognosticator to push this view. The Wikibon consultancy first talked about …
Chris Mellor, 20 Feb 2017
A screenshot of Streetmap's output Ordnance Survey map info

'At least I can walk away with my dignity' – Streetmap founder after Google lawsuit loss

Interview “The thing that snookered us came eight years after the event,” Kate Sutton of Streetmap told The Register late last week, following the High Court’s ruling that Google’s manipulation of search results did not destroy her business despite that being exactly what happened. Streetmap, the online mapping service, lost its High …
Gareth Corfield, 20 Feb 2017
Gorilla icon

Big three clouds, Apple, Facebook are buying all the best cloud tech

Those of you contemplating a cloud startup have two options: get acquired by one of five companies or build an automatic sueball flinger. So says Sam Altman, president of startup factory Y Combinator, in his annual letter describing the organisation's activities. The letter's full of StartupLand cliches - “Our mission is to …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Feb 2017
NBN

Competition and wholesale costs, not lack of fibre, crimp broadband in Australia

Like the sun rising, the release of a new Akamai State of the Internet report inevitably leads to opinion columns bemoaning Australia's slide on global league tables for broadband speed, most attributing it to the much-hated “multi-technology model” NBN. We're going to swim against the tide and suggest otherwise: the problem …
Big cloud photo via Shutterstock

Brit watchdog spanks Microsoft, Amazon, Apple into promising fairer cloud contracts

Amazon, Apple and Microsoft have committed to providing cloud storage users with fairer contracts after a crackdown by the UK's Competition Markets Authority (CMA). The companies are the latest cloud storage providers to improve their terms and conditions following the CMA's review of compliance with consumer law in the sector …
Kat Hall, 17 Feb 2017
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What does a complex AI model look like? Here's some Friday eye candy from UK biz Graphcore

Pics Brit chip startup Graphcore has produced sexy images of its graph processing. We wrote about Graphcore scoring $30m A-round funding in October. The processor designer came out of two years in XMOS-incubated stealth mode at that time, and was founded by CEO Nigel Toon and CTO Simon Knowles. XMOS is a fabless semiconductor …
Chris Mellor, 17 Feb 2017
Eric Schmidt

THE SCHMIDT HITS THE BAN: Keep your gloves off AI, military top brass

RSA USA Alphabet exec chairman Eric Schmidt is worried that the future of the internet is going to be under threat once the world’s militaries get good at artificial intelligence. Speaking at the RSA security conference in San Francisco, Google's ultimate supremo said he is worried the internet will be balkanized if countries lock …
Iain Thomson, 16 Feb 2017
Conchita Wurst. Editorial use only: Credit: Yulia Reznikov / Shutterstock, Inc.

Nul points for Ukraine's Eurovision ticket site fail

Eurovision fans purchasing tickets to the event in Ukraine this year were left frustrated due to a number of technical and payment issues with the website last night. One reader got in touch to report that the Ukrainian ticketing site concert.ua had experienced a "spectacular failure in payment process, security and ticket …
Kat Hall, 16 Feb 2017
John_Gower_world_Vox_Clamantis

NetApp confirms: SolidFire hyperconverged appliance is coming

+Comment NetApp met its revenue predictions for its third fiscal 2017 quarter and talked openly about a coming SolidFire-based hyperconverged product suited for scalable hybrid cloud and mixed workload enterprise deployments. NetApp's revenues were $1.4bn, an increase of 5 per cent sequentially and 1 per cent year-over-year, pretty …
Chris Mellor, 16 Feb 2017

Watch how Google's starving DeepMind AI turns hostile, attacks other bots to survive

Videos AI may be more human-like than people think. DeepMind’s latest research shows that once resources dwindle, the selfish instinct kicks in and virtual AI agents turn against each other, becoming aggressive to get what they want. The ugly side of human nature has been exposed in morality games like Prisoner’s Dilemma. In …
Katyanna Quach, 16 Feb 2017
Astronaut

Get it while it's hot: NASA's Space Poo contest winners wipe up $30k

US Air Force Colonel Thatcher Cardon, MD, has won a competition to develop a new diaper to cradle astronauts' soiled nethers for up to six days of spacefaring. While no details were given on the design of the space nappy, Cardon has been declared the recipient of $15,000 for submitting his MACES Perineal Access & Toileting …
Cell tower, view from below. Image by Shutterstock.com

Hutchison's 3UK and Google push 3.5 GHz on both sides of the pond

Analysis Some are talking about 3.5 GHz as a 5G band, but Hutchison’s deal to acquire UK Broadband to bolster its 3UK arm is all about the good old fight for LTE spectrum. This deal shows that it is not just the US’s opening of its 3.5 GHz band, via its CBRS scheme, that has thrust this spectrum into the limelight. In many parts of the …
Wireless Watch, 15 Feb 2017
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It's over? Pat Gelsinger's post vSphere VMware NSX-T opportunity

Sysadmin Blog VMware has recently announced its financial results for 2016, and for a company that's not just satured but that leads the VM market, it had a very good year. Some of this is attributed to accepting that VMware can't beat AWS, so it might as well join them. But VMware's NSX Network Virtualization arguably led the way, doubling …
Trevor Pott, 14 Feb 2017

Roses are red, violets are blue, fake-news-detecting AI is fake news, too

Analysis The viral spread of fake news and “alternative facts” has rocked Western politics. Oxford Dictionaries chose “post-truth” as its word of 2016, and when a society is scolded by a dictionary wielding a hyphenated word, you know you've collectively screwed up. “The concept of post-truth has been in existence for the past decade, …
Katyanna Quach, 14 Feb 2017

Infosec pros aren't too bothered by Trump – it's his cabinet sidekicks you need to worry about

BSidesSF We're less than a month into Donald Trump's reign in America, and so much has already kicked off. Since we're at the BSides San Francisco infosec conference this week, we asked security pro here to "rate my president." And we'll be honest: many attendees see some good in his appointment, although there is concern about who he …
Iain Thomson, 14 Feb 2017

The Mail vs Wikipedia: They're more alike than they'd ever admit

Analysis When you live in a glass house, is it wise to start a rock-throwing competition? Wikipedians this week added greatly to the amusement of the internet after around 40 contributors loftily declared that the Daily Mail was not a reliable source for citations. Much public hilarity ensued – for the reason that The Mail and …
Andrew Orlowski, 13 Feb 2017

Ford fills up ex-Google, Uber engineers' tank: $1bn pours into Argo AI

Ford is investing $1bn in Argo AI, a startup cofounded by engineers who resigned from Google and Uber’s autonomous car projects. Competition to develop the world’s first completely autonomous car is fierce. Companies like Audi, Tesla, Baidu, Nissan, and Toyota are racing to get their brand-spanking-new technologies on the road …
Katyanna Quach, 13 Feb 2017

Oz consumer watchdog: 'up to' speeds shouldn't be in broadband ads

Australia's consumer watchdog is trying to ensure advertising offers comprehensible and accurate broadband performance information. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) wants to regulate ads that spruik speeds “up to 100 Mbps” because consumers almost never experience the headline speeds advertised. …

Nokia wheels out a complete MVNO package. Makes a change from WinPho

Nokia has wheeled out a worldwide IoT network grid (WING) that sounds remarkably like an all-in-one mobile virtual network operators offering. The WING will, according to a Nokia announcement, “manage the IoT connectivity and services needs of a client's assets – such as connected cars or connected freight containers – as they …
Gareth Corfield, 10 Feb 2017

Verisign probed by US Dept of Justice over $135m .web auction

The US Department of Justice is digging into the highly unusual auction of internet extension .web last year, the company that purchased it has admitted. Speaking on Verisign's quarterly earnings conference call on Thursday, CEO Jim Bidzos told investors that on January 18 the registry had received a civil investigative demand …
Kieren McCarthy, 10 Feb 2017
ISIS fighters

ISIS videos, adtech, and the 'smartest guys in the room' (Google)

Special Report Google's ad blacklists, intended to stop big brand advertisements running over YouTube terror videos, aren’t working. In 2014, Newsnight reported that the taxpayer was paying for ads to run alongside beheadings. Three years on, The Times notes that after promising advertisers their ads wouldn't run against certain content, …
Andrew Orlowski, 10 Feb 2017
Toshiba

Oh my Tosh: Bids up to $3.6bn for memory biz as deadline approaches

Reuters is all over the Toshiba memory division 20 per cent stake sale, reporting incoming bids up to $3.6bn. The money is needed to offset a multibillion-dollar ($5-6bn) writedown of Toshiba's US nuclear power station business following disastrous overruns, and it's needed by March due to Toshiba's corporate financial and …
Chris Mellor, 09 Feb 2017
Punching desk photo via Shutterstock

SQL Server on Linux? HELL YES! Linux on Windows 10? Meh

Once the second biggest enemy of Linux (SCO Group takes top honours), Microsoft is positively giddy about not just supporting Linux but actually building tools that run Linux in Windows and about putting previously Windows-only software on Linux. You can run Ubuntu inside Windows 10, install CoreOS and Docker containers inside …

Streetmap loses appeal against Google Maps dominance judgement

Streetmap has lost its application to appeal against last year’s High Court judgement that Google did nothing wrong by promoting its own Maps product above Streetmap’s. “The bully boys won the day,” said Streetmap, immediately after the judgement was delivered. “This is a sad day for the internet.” Lord Justice Lloyd Jones, …
Gareth Corfield, 07 Feb 2017
Android TV updating

Google gets smooth early Android releases. OEMs are struggling

The rollout of Android 7.0 on some Samsung devices has smacked them right in the battery. Meanwhile in the background, further competition issues around the Google mobile OS are brewing. Testing by GSMArena reveals a dramatic loss of battery life on the Samsung S7 Edge (Exynos 8890 version) using the platform update. Battery …
Andrew Orlowski, 07 Feb 2017
Man counts pounds and pence. Photo by Shutterstock

Three drops £250m on UK Broadband

After being smote by regulators in its attempt to buy O2 for £10.25bn, Three has snapped up UK Broadband for a cool £250m instead. UK Broadband provides broadband access to 15,000 customers in the UK and under the deal will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Three UK. Dave Dyson, chief exec of Three UK, said: “UK Broadband …
Kat Hall, 06 Feb 2017

Wow, what an incredible 12 months: 2017's data center year in review

Comment The data center market is hot, especially now that we are getting a raft of funky new stuff, from promising non-Intel chips and system architectures to power and cooling optimizations. Since we're all thinking several quarters ahead anyway, we're practically in 2018. So from that point of view, we may as well look back at 2017 …
Shahin Khan, 06 Feb 2017

Chinese pirates are facing lifelong 'social credit' downgrade

Copyright infringement and use of counterfeit goods in China could downgrade a citizen's "social credit" with lifelong consequences as the country gears up to overhaul its IP laws and institutions. Following the evolution that the United States made in the late 19th century*, Chinese businesses are growing away from their …
Andrew Orlowski, 03 Feb 2017
Crown courtroom. Pic: Shutterstock

Ofcom splashed 11% more cash on legal costs with £4.9m war chest

Communications regulator Ofcom splashed an extra 11 per cent on legal costs in 2015/16 compared with the previous year, spending £4.9m seeing off threats from operators. "Our legal costs will normally fluctuate year-on-year, in response to the type and volume of work we undertake, and importantly how companies respond to our …
Kat Hall, 03 Feb 2017
Look upon my works, ye mighty, and giggle inanely. Sorry, David

David Hockney creates new Sun masthead. Now for The Reg...

Logowatch Artist David Hockney has redesigned the masthead of The Sun newspaper – and in the spirit of free expression and artistic endeavour we want you, dear Reg readers, to join us in honouring this beacon moment in the cultural life of Great Britain. 79-yr-old Hockney put finger to iPad on behalf of Rupert Murdoch’s super soaraway …
Gareth Corfield, 03 Feb 2017
Man reading newspaper with glasses on his head

Humanity needs you... to build an AI bot that can finger rotten headlines

Two AI researchers are behind a daring open challenge to fight the spread of outrageous headlines that are completely detached from reality. (As if anyone would write such things, tut-tut.) The Fake News Challenge (FNC) is organized by Dean Pomerleau, an entrepreneur and adjunct professor at Carnegie Mellon University, and …
Katyanna Quach, 03 Feb 2017

Humble Pai: New FCC supremo promises long overdue transparency

The new chairman of the US Federal Communications Commission, Ajit Pai, has come good on a promise to modernize the regulator by getting rid of its most infuriating habit: secret orders. For reasons that have never been adequately explained, the FCC maintains an arcane procedure where its documents are kept secret until FCC …
Kieren McCarthy, 02 Feb 2017

Vodafone sales slip after damp outing in Blighty

Vodafone posted a sales fall of 20 per cent to €1.7bn (£1.4bn) in the UK for its third-quarter results, dragging overall sales down 3.9 per cent to €13.7bn (£11.6bn) compared with the previous year. Chief exec Vittorio Colao said growth in Europe was centred around Italy, Germany and Spain. "In the UK we have made good …
Kat Hall, 02 Feb 2017
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MNOs will lose 5G rewards to new entrants if they will not share networks

Analysis The advantages of network sharing seem glaringly obvious in a world where the mismatch between mobile data demand and mobile data ARPU is rushing MNOs’ profits. The need to reduce the cost of delivering those rising tides of data is urgent, but many operators are ready to discuss almost any tactic – Wi-Fi offload, automation, …
Wireless Watch, 02 Feb 2017
Fibre, image via Shutterstock

Openreach appoints former TUC head to independent board

Openreach has appointed former general secretary of the Trades Union Congress (TUC) Sir Brendan Barber to its independent board. The creation of the board is part of BT's voluntary efforts to set up an independent Openreach entity. By doing so it hopes to avoid Ofcom winning approval from Europe for a legal separation of the …
Kat Hall, 01 Feb 2017
A large hand flicks an icon of a little red man. Image via shutterstock (Lasse Kristensen)

Dear Microsoft – a sysadmin's wishlist

Sysadmin Blog I yell at Microsoft a lot. It's cathartic. Microsoft make several decent pieces of software and quite a few great cloud services, but for every awesome thing they create it seems they ruin something else. Over the past year I've developed a wishlist of changes. Dear Microsoft... Azure Stack I like Azure Stack. A lot. What I …
Trevor Pott, 01 Feb 2017

Felted! AI poker bot Libratus cleans out pros in grueling tournament, smugly trousers $1.8m

Analysis Machines have triumphed again. Libratus, a powerful computer program, has crushed its human opponents at a heads-up no-limit Texas hold’em poker tournament held at Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, winning $1,776,250 over 120,000 hands. It’s a landmark achievement in AI game playing, said Tuomas Sandholm, co-creator …
Katyanna Quach, 01 Feb 2017

Citrix looks like it has escaped 'not dead yet' status

In 2015 Citrix was in trouble: the company fired 900 employees and warned it would miss guidance on earnings, endured a profit slump and cleaned out its C-suite. While the company could still point to annual revenue grazing towards US$3bn, software companies don't often improve their health after bad years. With VMware …
Simon Sharwood, 01 Feb 2017
Fibre, image via Shutterstock

Plucky upstart CityFibre expects to swing into profit in FY2016

Wannabe BT challenger CityFibre is expecting to swing into profit for the full-year 2016, having added more than 5,000 fibre-to-the-premises connections last year. In its preliminary results, the business is expecting earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation, compared with a loss of £2.9m during 2015. The …
Kat Hall, 31 Jan 2017
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella

See you around, Larry: AWS is our new Oracle, says Microsoft's Nadella

Analysis Amazon's cloud service AWS has replaced Oracle and VMware as Microsoft's chief rivals, the Windows giant's CEO Satya Nadella has said. In a conference call with analysts to discuss its Q2 2017 financials, Microsoft executives said their margins were fat enough to fend off AWS and other cloud competitors. Nadella said: "Even …

Sony takes $1bn writedown: Streaming has killed the DVD star

DVD and Blu-ray income has collapsed faster than Sony expected, obliging the company to take a $976m (Y112bn) impairment on its movie business. Sony’s movie and TV boss stepped down earlier this month. Sony took an impairment charge on the same business in 2014 as the “demand for physical media was contracting faster than …
Andrew Orlowski, 30 Jan 2017
Optane

Flashy Intel sees the XPoint of solid state

Intel made $816m from flash memory products in the final 2016 quarter and sees XPoint contributing 10 per cent of revenues in 2018. This is minuscule compared to the Intel’s $16.4bn revenues for the quarter but a sizeable chunk of change in the flash business. Its Non-Volatile Memory Solutions Group saw revenues up 25 per cent …
Chris Mellor, 30 Jan 2017

Secret HPE letter tells sales team and partners to keep selling Arista 'confidently'

HPE has gone the full Rick Astley with Arista, telling its sales team and partners customers it will never give it up, let it down, run around or desert it. In a hoped-to-be-secret letter to “HPE Sales and Channel Partners” sighted by The Register, and signed by HPE's chief of enterprise group sales Peter Ryan and veep/GM for …
Simon Sharwood, 30 Jan 2017
People fight in cartoon cloud. photo by Shutterstock

So you want to roll your own cloud

Sysadmin Blog I have set myself a mission to create a cloud this year. Not a lab test version of something or other, but a real and usable cloud that I can sell to my clients. It's not built yet, but I intend to document my journey towards that end. The first question I get when discussing this project is always "why do you want to build a …
Trevor Pott, 27 Jan 2017
Titanic, image via shutterstock

Time to face the music, Violin Memory: Upstart's asset auction is over

Violin Memory's assets were scheduled to be put up for auction on Monday in New York. So far, no successful bids have been announced, although a buyer could be revealed by the end of the month. Violin filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in December after failing to find a new owner to take it under its wing. Since October 2015, …
Chris Mellor, 26 Jan 2017
whitehall road in London. <a href="http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-637816p1.html?cr=00&pl=edit-00">Albert Pego</a> / <a href="http://www.shutterstock.com/editorial?cr=00&pl=edit-00">Shutterstock.com</a>

Infinidat slims down in UK: Storage upstart has just handful of Brit staff

Infinidat has slimmed its UK office from 17 heads to just four since January 2016, and has not won a new customer in that time, we're told. The company, headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts, is Moshe Yanai's creation that eschews an all-flash design. It sells monolithic storage arrays in competition with EMC VMAX kit, …
Chris Mellor, 26 Jan 2017

Hey, AT&T. Help us out. Why is buying Time Warner a good idea?

Fifteen US Senators are asking AT&T to provide them with an outline of how they plan to benefit the public with the $85.4bn acquisition of Time Warner. Democrats Al Franken (MN), Elizabeth Warren (MA), and Patrick Leahy (VT), as well as Independent Bernie Sanders (VT), signed on to the letter [PDF] calling for AT&T boss …
Shaun Nichols, 25 Jan 2017

Revenue is vanity and profit is sanity. Right, Seagate?

In its second fiscal 2017 quarter, Seagate's profits rose even as it shipped fewer disk drives, through manufacturing cost reductions and increased component counts in high-capacity drives. Second quarter revenues were $2.9bn, 2.9 per cent lower than the $2.98bn reported a year ago, and 3.5 per cent more than the prior quarter …
Chris Mellor, 25 Jan 2017
A crying child

Oracle grasses up Google to Brussels over user 'super profiles'

The European Commission has confirmed that it will probe competition concerns over Google's decision to allow personal user data in its silos to co-mingle, to create "super profiles". Until last June, Google explicitly stated that behavioural data from its giant DoubleClick ad network would not be merged with a user's Google …
Andrew Orlowski, 25 Jan 2017
Signpost saying Happy Sad

VMware user group fight leaves community diminished

Ongoing tension between Nutanix and VMware has spilled over into Virtzilla's user groups, which have decided to exclude volunteers who work for rivals. That decision has left both vendors somewhat diminished and the user groups' governing body facing possible rebellion by individual user groups. This story starts in the last …
Simon Sharwood, 25 Jan 2017