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EE Power Bar

Exploding Power Bars: EE couldn't even get the CE safety mark right

Exclusive EE failed to label its "Power Bar" phone charging devices with the correct marking to show that the product complied with European safety directives, The Register has learned. The embarrassing cockup comes after we revealed that EE management had been warned about safety risks with its Power Bar, ahead of its launch in April …
Kelly Fiveash, 13 Aug 2015
Amplify tablet

Rupert Murdoch rips up his own fondleslab foundry

Rupert Murdoch's unerring nose for a future tech market failure has struck again, with the company writing down its Amplify education business. Amplify, created out of the acquisition of Wireless Generation, and was supposed to corner the educational market. News acquired it for US$360 million in 2010, and subsequently poured …
Dudley Do-Right Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Police use RIFLE AND TASER to relieve man of iPhone case

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) has armed itself with rifles and tasers to confront a man who appeared to have a handgun in his belt. According to The Globe and Mail, the “gun” was actually an iPhone case, probably of the sort US authorities have warned against using on the ground that they're stupid and dangerous. …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Aug 2015
Two people manipulate a CAD design on a Microsoft Surface Hub

Microsoft: Surface hub will ship from January 1, 2016

Microsoft has quietly announced when its Surface Hub will ship, and if you're impatient, you won't be pleased: it won't be until January 1, 2016. In July, it emerged that manufacturing problems were going to delay the planned September 1 ship date of the product. Redmond has now updated its “we're running late” blog post with …

CAUGHT: Lenovo crams unremovable crapware into Windows laptops – by hiding it in the BIOS

Analysis Lenovo has sold laptops bundled with unremovable software that features a bonus exploitable security vulnerability. If the crapware is deleted, or the hard drive wiped and Windows reinstalled from scratch, the laptop's firmware will quietly and automatically reinstall Lenovo's software on the next boot-up. Built into the …
Chris Williams, 12 Aug 2015

Lenovo Euro supremo: Yes, we wrote down PC stock, what about it?

Lenovo’s EMEA president has confirmed the company was forced to write down excess PC inventory after the downturn in the industry caught it and other players in the market short. As revealed months back, Lenovo was the worst offender in a European sector where demand fueled by Microsoft ending support for XP and by wider …
Paul Kunert, 12 Aug 2015
Qualcomm

Snapdragon 820: Qualcomm lifts kimono on its shiny new GPUs

Qualcomm has yet to publicly share hard specs on the Snapdragon 820, its forthcoming flagship mobile system-on-chip (SoC), but on Wednesday it served an amuse-bouche by unveiling the new chip's pixel-bashing components. The Adreno 5xx line is Qualcomm's latest generation of mobile graphics-processing units (GPUs), and they …
Neil McAllister, 12 Aug 2015
ASUS Chair Jonney Shih Computex 2015 press conference

Smartphone sales looking rosy for Asus, despite PC meltdown

While the mobe power base is shifting from the traditional players to the new upstarts, with Samsung and HTC suffering at the hands of Huawei and Xiaomi, Asus is having a good time in the good old handset market. Sales were up from three million in the first quarter to five million in the second and the company is predicting …
Simon Rockman, 12 Aug 2015

ANIMALS being CUT UP to make Apple Watch straps

The Register can reveal that beautiful animals are being cut down in their prime to make Apple Watch straps. We at The Register's nature history desk were upset to discover that creatures such as the majestic ostrich, the noble alligator and the much-maligned shark are being used to make wrist securing devices for fruity …
Team Register, 12 Aug 2015
iran_flags_648

ZTE says it won't allow exec to appear in US court over arrest fears

Relations between Chinese telecoms vendor ZTE and the US federal government remain as tense as ever, with ZTE claiming it won't allow one of its executives to testify in a New York court over fears he will be detained if he enters the US. US District Judge Lewis Kaplan of the Southern District of New York had ordered Guo …
Neil McAllister, 12 Aug 2015
Smartphones running Ubuntu

Ubuntu phone on sale to world+dog ... but will it work on your network?

Customers worldwide are now able to buy smartphones running the mobile version of Ubuntu Linux, even though many won't be able to get full value out of them. In a Tuesday blog post, Ubuntu maker Canonical said that BQ, its Spanish hardware partner, has opened a new online store where customers around the world can order the …
Neil McAllister, 11 Aug 2015

Power10 ... 2020 ... 10nm – suddenly IBM snaps awake, scribbles notes

IBM is dreaming of rolling out Power10 chips using a 10nm process size from 2020, it has emerged. This is rather telling: this means that even though Big Blue has boasted that it has cracked the 7nm barrier, we're not likely to see any IBM chips using that process size until 2023 at the earliest. Back to the Power10 …
Chris Williams, 11 Aug 2015
Android hanging

Another day, another stunning security flaw in Android – this time hitting 55% of mobes

Video Fresh from sorting out the Stagefright flaw, Google has another serious security vulnerability in Android on its hands. A privilege escalation hole allows normal apps to gain superpowers to snoop on a device's owner, smuggle in malware, and wreak other havoc. Youtube Video The vulnerability, CVE-2015-3825, affects about 55 …
Iain Thomson, 10 Aug 2015
Indian mobile use

Google ready for another pop at India, with Android One in hand

Google is trying the good old switching-it-off-and-on-again ploy with its scheme to sell super-cheap Android phones in India. Android One has been a flop, with the Chocolate Factory failing to understand the Indian market. The dominant manufacturers – Micromax, Intex and Spice – felt that the OS was an American solution being …
Simon Rockman, 10 Aug 2015
Intel sign by StockMonkeys.com

Intel building Xeon into lapwarmers as designers, content creators call the shots

Intel is putting its Xeon processors into laptops for the first time, ushering in what it hopes will be a significant performance boost and marketing opportunity. This is not only because the CPU is faster but also because they will feature the faster Thunderbolt 3 system, with palindromic USB Type-C ports that support the …
Simon Rockman, 10 Aug 2015
Asus VivoMini UN42-M054Y

Introducing the Asus VivoMini UN42 – a pint-sized PC, literally

Review You only have to own a mini PC for a short while to understand the attraction. Minimal footprint, easy to handle and with any luck, a useful selection of interfacing options. Go for the latest fifth generation Intel chips and you can have sufficient grunt to tackle even the most arduous of desktops tasks. Asus VivoMini UN42- …
Bob Dormon, 10 Aug 2015
shutterstock_57979207-missing-watch

Has Microsoft saved the Apple Watch with Outlook improvement?

Microsoft has updated its Outlook service for iOS to support the Apple Watch, the wristjob the world isn't quite wearing, at the moment at least. The official Microsoft office mail client for those who have to use Apple products has been upgraded, and the new version 1.3.5 now adds the watch “glance mode” so that you can see …
Simon Rockman, 10 Aug 2015
EE Power Bar

Power Bar: EE was warned of safety risk BEFORE user was burned in explosion

Exclusive EE management was warned that its popular "Power Bar" phone charging devices had serious safety risks before they were given to customers, the Register has learned. A Power Bar subsequently exploded, injuring a young woman badly enough that she required hospital treatment, and some Power Bars have since been recalled. Last …
Kelly Fiveash, 7 Aug 2015

Big, ugly, heavy laptops are surprise PC sales sweet spot

Things are so bad in the PC market that students of economics and physics are both probably keen to figure out just what's going on. But there's a singularity of sunshine in the market, says box-counter IDC, in the form of a surge in sales for big, ugly, heavy laptops, aka certified workstations. The “certified” is important …
Nvidia GeForce

Pray harder for AMD

Graphics and mobile chip kingpin Nvidia posted unexpectedly solid results for the second quarter of its fiscal 2016 on Thursday and said it projected next quarter's numbers to be strong, as well. Total revenue for the three months ending on July 26 was $1.15bn, which trounced even Wall Street's most optimistic expectations. …

Cher tells HTC: If I could turn back time ... if I could find a way (to not lose $250m in a quarter)

HTC has warned staff there will be mass layoffs after the biz lost more a quarter of a billion dollars in three months. For quarter ending June 30, HTC turned $NT33bn (US$1.04bn) in revenues (down 49 per cent year-on-year) into a NT$5.1bn (US$161.1m) loss, thanks to slow sales of its Android mobile devices. China in particular …
Shaun Nichols, 6 Aug 2015
graph_decline_648

Lenovo topples Apple from PC summit by declining less slowly

In what could be seen by some as a slightly hollow victory, Lenovo knocked Apple off the top spot in the global PC race by declining more slowly than its rival. Canalys stats show the total market dropped 11.8 per cent year-on-year in Q2 to a little over 109m desktops, notebooks and tabs. For the record, this equates to 1.46m …
Paul Kunert, 6 Aug 2015
Smartphones

Blighty a 'smartphone society' amid rise of 4G middle class

Ofcom has published its twelfth annual Communications Market report, featuring a modest analysis of how British society is accommodating technology by declaring that "the UK is now a smartphone society". Published today, Ofcom's 431-page Communications Market Report 2015 [PDF] has found that a third (33 per cent) of internet …
Samsung gesture control settings

Samsung looks into spam ads appearing on Brits' smart TVs

Samsung is launching an investigation into British customers receiving spam ads in their smart TVs. Sammy appears to be sending ads directly to some TVs using the notification bar, which was previously used to alert system updates. One reader got in touch with The Register to complain there has been no explanation or solution …
Kat Hall, 6 Aug 2015

ISC ’15 Student Cluster Competition: Euro kids answered the calls to arms

HPC Blog Eight countries from five continents sent eleven university student teams to do battle at the recently concluded ISC’15 Student Cluster Competition. If you multiply 8 x 5 x 11, you get 440; a number that has no relevance to this article. Europe was ably represented by four teams. Let’s have a video introduction to each of them …
Motorola Moto G 3rd generation

Testing Motorola's Moto G third-gen mobe: Is it still king of the hill?

Review It's been relatively easy recommending a SIM-free phone for under £200 for the past couple of years. The decision tree looked like this: If you wanted those specific apps, you’d want to consider the Moto G. But if you didn’t, then the Lumia range gave you a better phone at any sub-£200 price point. Windows Phone was intended …
Eve in the Garden of Eden talking to a rather angry God on Snapchat

Hacking Team brewed potent iOS poison for non-jailbroken iThings

Hacking Team compromised non-jailbroken iOS devices using a variant of last year’s Masque Attack, in which Apple devices were infected via emails and text messages. That's according to a study of the 400GB of documents that were pilfered from the Italian snoop-ware maker's computers by hackers, and leaked online for all to see …
John Leyden, 6 Aug 2015

Intel emits Skylake CPUs for gamers, overclockers (Psst, you'll need new RAM and a new mobo)

Intel has announced the first two processors using its new Skylake microarchitecture: the Core i5-6600K and the Core i7-6700K. Both of these 14nm chips are aimed at desktop PC gamers and people still overclocking their machines. The components form an outrider party for Skylake as more chips using the microarchitecture are due …
shutterstock_101821642

IBM and Apple sitting in a tree, k-i-s-s-i-n-g e-n-t-e-r-p-r-i-s-e b-u-y-e-r-s

IBM is once again pushing its software-for-suits in tandem with Apple. Big Blue said it will sell its enterprise customers Mac desktops and notebooks pre-loaded with its IT management software and services. The bundles are aimed at helping IT departments integrate Macs with their current software platforms. Under the new …
Shaun Nichols, 5 Aug 2015
Adrian Ludwig

Biggest security update in history coming up: Google patches Android hijack bug Stagefright

Black Hat 2015 For those of you worried about the Stagefright flaw in Android, be reassured, a patch will be coming down the line in the next few days. "My guess is that this is the single largest software update the world has ever seen," said Adrian Ludwig, lead engineer for Android security at Google. "Hundreds of millions of devices are …
Iain Thomson, 5 Aug 2015

Sengled lightbulb speakers: The best worst stereo on Earth

Review It's not often these days that you are disappointed by a product. Websites with online ratings and amateur reviews have made it so easy and fast for people to share experiences of new gizmos that you can instantly tell a hit from a dud – and avoid the duds. What makes the Sengled lightbulbs all the more disappointing is that I …
TG's phone for older Android users

Too much vino? LG brings Wine Smart oldster-mobe to Europe

The Wine Smart is a new 4G Android phone from LG, and it looks vastly different to anything else on the market: it’s a flip phone. Yep, it flips like it's 1999. Both LG and Samsung have been selling Android flip phones in their native land for a while. Doro tried a slider with the Doro 740, but European availability of an …
Simon Rockman, 5 Aug 2015

EE recalls Power Bar phone chargers after explosion burns woman

EE has recalled thousands of Power Bar phone chargers just days after a woman ended up in hospital when one of the devices exploded, causing injury to her hands and damage to the victim's property. The UK's biggest mobile operator said it was aware of a small number of incidents where the power pack had overheated, posing a …
Kelly Fiveash, 5 Aug 2015
Sinclair ZX80 kit

Sinclair stretches to new major GSMA role

The GSMA has a new interim director general, with chief technology officer Alex Sinclair taking over the reins following the departure of the charismatic Anne Bouverot. Bouverot announced last March that she would be leaving at the end of July. No full-time replacement has yet been appointed – although it is believed that the …
Simon Rockman, 5 Aug 2015
Epson EcoTank

Epson: Cheap printers, expensive ink? Let's turn that upside down

There can't be many printer owners who haven't had an apoplectic fit about the outrageous cost of inks for their machines, and now Epson is trying to change that business model and lower the cost of printing. Traditionally printer manufacturers have sold their hardware at a loss and made the money back over the lifecycle of …
Iain Thomson, 4 Aug 2015
BlackBerry Passport

Reclothed BlackBerry Passport launched as Silver Edition

BlackBerry has revamped the design of its Passport, putting its monster QWERTY phablet in a new upmarket frame. The “Silver Edition” Passport contains the same guts as the original, launched last autumn, but now sports rounded bottom corners, a tweaked keyboard and new camera housing, as well as a grippier back. The phone, …
Xiaomi Mi4 LTE Android smartphone

Asian worries for Samsung and Apple as local brands chop up the market

Figures from research company Canalys indicate both Apple and Samsung are feeling the pinch in the world's two fastest growing mobile markets: China and India. In Q2 2015, one in three smartphones shipped in China came from Huawei or Xiaomi, with the latter being the best-selling smartphone in the Asian giant, with a 15.9 per …
Simon Rockman, 4 Aug 2015
Sony Xperia Z4 4G Android tablet

Sony Xperia Z4 4G Android tablet – gift of sound and vision

Review Time to recap the history of Sony’s Xperia tablet range to put this new model into context. In the beginning was the Xperia Tablet, the first Sony 10-inch slab. Then came the Z2 Tablet, launched just over a year ago and reviewed here. The Z3 Tablet never existed, only the clumsily named Z3 Tablet Compact, an 8-inch affair. …
Alun Taylor, 4 Aug 2015
shutterstock_101821642

Apple chief Cook cooks up rumours after BMW car talks, factory tour

Apple has reportedly been having secret confabs with car maker BMW – with scuttlebutt suggesting the companies flirted with the idea of a possible hook up. According to Reuters, Cupertino boss Tim Cook visited BMW's headquarters in 2014 and higher-ups at Apple were apparently taken on a tour of the facilities at the car …
Kelly Fiveash, 2 Aug 2015

OnePlus phone fanbois flock for a shiny phondle

Pics It looked just like the queues you get outside Apple stores. But we were in South Of The River – in deepest Southwark – where Apple doesn't set foot. What was going on? The answer was that OnePlus, a Shenzen-based phone "startup" – read on for an explanation of the scare quotes – was offering fanbois a glimpse at its new phone …
Qnap TS-231+ dual bay NAS box

It's enough to get your back up: Eight dual-bay SOHO NAS boxes

Product Round-Up For a great many people, there is only one place to look when talking about storing data somewhere other than their local storage in their PC, notebook or tablet – and that’s to the cloud. Seagate STCT200 dual bay NAS box Best of both worlds: a dual-bay NAS can either double up on capacity or be configured to mirror data …
Simon Crisp, 2 Aug 2015
Slipway

It's Friday! Had a good week? It was probably better than Seagate's

In keeping with its warning, Seagate confirmed a revenue and profits decline as its mainstay desktop and notebook drive shipments tumbled for the third straight quarter. Enterprise drive shipments also declined in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2015, as did branded (consumer drives), although consumer electronics shipments rose …
Chris Mellor, 31 Jul 2015