Hardware > More stories

OnePlus 2 backs

Mobe-maker OnePlus 'fesses up to flouting USB-C spec

In early November Google chap Benson Leung caused a stir when he wrote an analysis suggesting manufacturers of cables and power adapters weren't paying attention to the USB Type-C spec. Manufacturers' inattention, he worried, might result in devices being damaged as they suck down too much power. Leung's concerns appear to …
Simon Sharwood, 27 Nov 2015

Lights, power, action! Smartplugs with a twist

Review For reasons that continue to confound consumers, the two most popular areas for smart-home technologies right now are lightbulbs and plugs. There are literally dozens of companies trying to do the electronic equivalent of designing a better mousetrap. Among the also-rans, there are a few that stand out, however. We've already …
Kieren McCarthy, 26 Nov 2015
Raspberry Pi Zero

What the world needs now is Pi, sweet $5 Raspberry Pi Zero

Our American cousins may be getting stuck in to pumpkin pie today, but Raspberry Pi hopes they'll also appreciate its $5 (£4) Pi Zero computer, which the Blighty outfit launched today. In a video showing off the teeny-tiny 'puter, Raspberry Pi boss Eben Upton spoke about how the high cost of machines, such as the Commodore …
Kelly Fiveash, 26 Nov 2015
Samsung Gear VR headset

Samsung Gear VR is good. So good 2016 could be year virtual reality finally makes it

Having already lived through one virtual reality hype cycle, I’m surprised to find that 2015 has been punctuated of a number of experiences proving that virtual reality may finally be nearing the mainstream. In February, I experienced some of the new head-mounted displays - and found first-generation Oculus Rift unimpressive. …
Mark Pesce, 26 Nov 2015
Dell XPS 15

Dell computers bundled with backdoor that blurts hardware fingerprint to websites

Analysis Dell ships Windows computers with software that lets websites slurp up the machine's exact specifications, warranty status, and other details without the user knowing. This information can be used to build a fingerprint that potentially identifies a person while she browses across the web. It can be abused by phishers and …
Shaun Nichols, 25 Nov 2015

What America's drone owner database could look like in future

A task force assembled by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has revealed its suggestions for personal drone registration in the US. The team's recommendations [PDF] aim to serve as an outline for the FAA as it moves forward with a plan to craft registration requirements for personal-use drones. By registering …
Shaun Nichols, 24 Nov 2015

Dell: How to kill that web security hole we put in your laptops, PCs

Dell has published a guide on how to remove the web security backdoor it installed in its Windows laptops and desktop PCs. This confirms what we all know by now – that Dell was selling computers with a rather embarrassing hole it in their defenses. New models from the XPS, Precision and Inspiron families include a powerful …
Chris Williams, 24 Nov 2015

Superfish 2.0 worsens: Dell's dodgy security certificate is an unkillable zombie

Updated The rogue root certificate in new Dell computers – a certificate that allows people to be spied on when banking and shopping online – will magically reinstall itself even when deleted. El Reg can confirm that the eDellRoot root CA cert, discovered over the weekend, automatically reappears when removed from the Windows …
Shaun Nichols, 23 Nov 2015
Dell Inspiron 15-7537

Superfish 2.0: Dell ships laptops, PCs with huge internet security hole

Dell ships computers with all the tools necessary for crooks to spy on the owners' online banking, shopping, webmail, and more. The US IT titan installs a powerful root CA certificate, including its private key, on its Windows notebooks and desktops. These can be abused by eavesdropping miscreants to silently decrypt encrypted …
Shaun Nichols, 23 Nov 2015
Tesla's big saloon out-performs sports cars

Tesla recalls every single Model S car in seatbelt safety probe

If you are fortunate (and rich) enough to own a Tesla Model S, then you'll have to take it in for a checkup, as the automaker has recalled all 90,000 cars because of a problem with the seatbelts. The recall comes after a single complaint from a European Tesla owner, who turned to speak to a back-seat passenger and found their …
Iain Thomson, 20 Nov 2015

Dell PCs to be never knowingly undersold by John Lewis this Chrimbo

Dell is to go head-to-head with Apple, HP and Lenovo for the affections of computer-seeking shoppers this Christmas - the XPS range will be never knowingly undersold to the middle classes by John Lewis. Sarah Shields, exec director and UK GM for channel and distribution claimed Dell could not afford to ignore the retail …
Paul Kunert, 20 Nov 2015
Internet construction helmet

Don't flip your lid: The Internet of Helmets has arrived

Microsoft has shown off an internet helmet built by a customer. The hard-wired headwear is the brainchild of construction outfit Laing O’Rourke, which is rightly concerned with the welfare of workers it sends out to build stuff in the sweltering heat of places like Australia and the Middle East. Folks toiling in the hot sun …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Nov 2015

How TV ads silently ping commands to phones: Sneaky SilverPush code reverse-engineered

Earlier this week the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) warned that an Indian firm called SilverPush has technology that allows adverts to ping inaudible commands to smartphones and tablets. Now someone has reverse-engineered the code and published it for everyone to check. SilverPush's software kit can be baked into …
Iain Thomson, 20 Nov 2015
Apple Watch wireless charging

Apple's Watch charging pad proves Cupertino still screwing buyers

Apple is now selling a wireless charging pad for its smartwatch. The $79 plate not only demonstrates Cupertino's commitment to design, it also confirms its habit of ripping off people. The magnetic charging dock is a small circular pad that the Watch can be placed on to recharge. It will only work with Apple's smartwatch, …
Iain Thomson, 19 Nov 2015
IT Crowd's Roy: "Have you turned it off and on again?"

Apple – it's true: iPad Pro slabs freeze when plugged in to charge

Apple has confirmed its iPad Pro tablets sometimes freeze while recharging. The Cupertino giant has published a support document acknowledging that its new 12.9-inch tablet has a tendency to lock up when plugged in for a battery charge, requiring a hard reboot to revive it. This comes after people have been complaining for …
Shaun Nichols, 19 Nov 2015
Wileyfox's Storm Android handset

Storm in a teacup: Wileyfox does Android cheapie, British style

Review Wileyfox is the first new British phone brand in over a decade, and it’s hoping to cash in on the Shenzhen economic miracle. Not so long ago, cheap Android phones were synonymous with “Landfill”. There was usually something lacking. But rapid advances in component manufacturing and packaging have seen companies enter the …
Andrew Orlowski, 19 Nov 2015

DS5: Vive la différence ... oh, and throw away the Citroën badge

Vulture @ the Wheel Oh, how car-makers like to mine their archive in the name of style. BMW’s Mini, VW’s Beetle, Fiat’s 500 ... all doff their caps to the style and nomenclature of an imaginary post-war automotive utopia. Citroën got in on the act back in 2010 with the resurrection of the DS marque. A few months ago to celebrate the DS brand's …
Alun Taylor, 19 Nov 2015
BlackBerry Priv. Press pic

BlackBerry Priv: After two weeks on test, looks like this is a keeper

Two-week test I seem to have spent my life getting through, testing, and handling a lot of phones. A lot. But I hate phones. I hate all the hundreds of them I have lying around my house and the countless thousands of pounds I have spent on them. I hate that despite having tried, and bought, what seems like every combination possible, …
Dominic Young, 18 Nov 2015

Apple's design 'drives up support costs, makes gadgets harder to use'

Apple's design has fallen from the high standards set by Donald Norman and Bruce Tognazzini, reckon... er, Donald Norman and Bruce Tognazzini. The two UX gurus and former Apple alumni now think "Apple is giving design a bad name". Nothing new, you might think. But because Apple is now so influential, poor design from Cupertino …
Andrew Orlowski, 18 Nov 2015

Apple's Faulty Powers moment: iPad Pro slabs 'temporarily bricked' during recharge

Some Apple iPad Pro owners claim their new jumbo tablets freeze when being recharged. Multiple posts to Cupertino's support forums over the past several days describe how the enormo-slabs stop working when plugged in to a power source, and need a hard restart to revive them. Judging by the message boards, the issue usually …
Shaun Nichols, 17 Nov 2015

Apple supremo Tim Cook rules out OS X fondleslab, iOS merger

Apple CEO Tim Cook is telling customers not to expect a Mac answer to the Microsoft Surface Pro any time soon. The Apple boss said in an interview with Ireland's Independent that the Cupertino giant has no desire to merge its iOS mobile operating system and its Macintosh desktop and notebook lines with a "hybrid" tablet that …
Shaun Nichols, 16 Nov 2015

Pope instructs followers to put the iPhone away during dinner

Pope Francis has slammed the use of smartphones and warned that they risk damaging family life. Speaking at the Vatican yesterday, the Pontiff noted that the dinner table is where families experience a sense of "togetherness," but that it can be ruined by over-attachment to modern technology. "A family that almost never eats …
Kieren McCarthy, 13 Nov 2015
CHiPs

California cops pull over Google car for driving too SLOWLY

Google is very proud of its perfect safety record when it comes to automated vehicles, but that didn't stop one of its jelly-mold cars getting pulled over on Thursday. Police pull over Google car License and product key please "A Mountain View Police Department traffic officer noticed traffic backing up behind a slow …
Iain Thomson, 13 Nov 2015
Android icon desktop toys

Amazon vendors flog thousands of rooted, malware-laden tablets

Amazon is unwittingly acting as the retail channel for thousands of Android devices preloaded with nightmare advertising malware and with operating systems rooted, users and security boffins allege. The blackbox tablets badged under various brands and flogged on the ecommerce site and elsewhere are A$100 (£50) Android units …
Darren Pauli, 13 Nov 2015

D-Wave heads for New Mexico

The Los Alamos National Laboratory has become the latest organisation to give quantum annealing a whirl, with D-Wave announcing that the facility will take delivery of its thousand-qubit 2X system. The national security research outfit will be collaborating with the Department of Energy and “selected university partners” to …
Bluetooth Smart

Bluetooth SIG hints at 2016 roadmap

Crackers and hackers will no longer need to get up close and personal with Bluetooth devices to launch attacks: the next iteration of the standard will get a fourfold increase in range. The Bluetooth SIG is previewing a bunch of changes it plans for 2016, and it's drunk deeply from the Internet of Things Kool-Aid bottle. …
Team Register, 13 Nov 2015

Brits rattle tin for custom LCD Raspberry Pi funbox

A London-based "networked studio of invention" is rattling the tin down at Kickstarter for the net-connected Tingbot – a custom case for the Raspberry Pi with LCD touchscreen which promises to transform the fruity minicomputer into "a platform for creative applications". For a pledge of just 50 quid – and that compares …
Lester Haines, 12 Nov 2015

Instascam! Apple yanks phoney app, Google follows

A popular but malicious fake Instagram “who viewed your profile” app has been pulled from both Apple's App Store and Google Play – but not until after between 500,000 and a million suckers downloaded it. “Who Viewed Your Profile – InstaAgent” exploited peoples' insecurity (it's also a popular way for Twitter scam accounts to …

Latest Android phones hijacked with tidy one-stop-Chrome-pop

PacSec Google's Chrome for Android has been popped in a single exploit that could lead to the compromise of any handset. The exploit, showcased at MobilePwn2Own at the PacSec conference in Tokyo yesterday but not disclosed in full detail, targets the JavaScript v8 engine. It can probably hose all modern and updated Android phones if …
Darren Pauli, 12 Nov 2015
DARPA remote drone submarine hunter

US military readies drone submarine hunter

Video Early next year a 140-ton warship will slip from its Pacific berth and sail out to patrol US coastal waters for up to three months, all without a single sailor on board. The Anti-Submarine Warfare Continuous Trail Unmanned Vessel (ACTUV) is a 132-foot ship packed with sensors designed to hunt down signals from diesel-electric …
Iain Thomson, 12 Nov 2015
Jen-Hsun Huang

Nvidia unveils credit card-sized 'supercomputer' for portable AI

Older readers may think of Nvidia as a graphics firm but, according to CEO Jen-Hsun Huang, the firm is now all-in on accelerating computing and machine learning. "I've been in the computer industry for 30-some years and this has got to be one of the most exciting things that's happening: The ability for computers to learn, the …
Iain Thomson, 11 Nov 2015

Get an Apple Watch or die warns Tim Cook

After hyping his first new product as Apple CEO to death, it appears Tim Cook is feeling the pressure to make the Apple Watch a success. Sadly, that has not been the case and the expensive and not terribly useful wristwatch is expected to have sold just seven million units in its first year, against expectations of 30 million …
Kieren McCarthy, 11 Nov 2015
Qualcomm Snapdragon 820

Qualcomm sheds last veil from Snapdragon 820

After letting the world in on glimpses of its Snapdragon 820 processor for a few months, Qualcomm has finally taken the lamp out of the basket. The company will have high hopes for the chip: troubles in China, being jilted by Samsung, and talk of overheating in its Snapdragon 810 chips left it with disappointing revenue and …

ARM reveals the Internet of Things security defenses hackers will inevitably learn to evade

ARM hopes to make chips in the Internet of Things a little more secure – by adding its TrustZone defenses to its microcontroller blueprints. In effect, ARM is adding some extra hurdles for hackers to leap in order to exploit programming bugs in gadgets' firmware. What the heck is TrustZone? TrustZone is usually found in ARM's …
Chris Williams, 10 Nov 2015
Acer CloudMobile S500 Android smartphone

ARM's new Cortex-A35: How to fine-tune a CPU for web browsing on bargain smartphones

ARM, designer of smartphone brains, will today reveal the Cortex-A35: a processor core subtly tweaked to run mobile web browsers and similar apps faster. How can a CPU be tuned for something seemingly so specific? The answer lies in the A35's instruction prefetch queue. ARM has halved the length of this queue in an attempt to …
Chris Williams, 10 Nov 2015

Here are the graphics processors cloud giants will use to crunch your voices, videos and data

If you think you can build the next Youtube, Facebook or Google, you'll need to invest heavily in artificial intelligence and GPU-accelerated engineering to get any kind of edge over rivals. And Nvidia just so happens to have some hardware for you, or so it says. The graphics chip giant has revealed a Tesla M40 GPU …
Chris Williams, 10 Nov 2015

Team MIPS tries to spoil ARM's party with new 64-bit Warrior, 32-bit microcontroller brains

Imagination Technologies has decided today – right in the middle of its arch rival ARM's annual technical conference in California – is the best day to announce some new chip designs. As a friendly reminder that ARM doesn't have the world of embedded processors completely sewn up, Imagination will unveil the 64-bit MIPS P6600 …
Chris Williams, 10 Nov 2015
Einstein

Einstein's brain to be picked by satellites

The European Space Agency is to make the most of two satellite misfires by using them to test Einstein's theory of relativity. Last August, the fifth and sixth Galileo satellites were launched as part of a plan to create a Euro-run GPS system, but the launch didn't go according to plan. A failure in the fourth stage of the …
Iain Thomson, 10 Nov 2015
Microsoft Band

Microsoft Band 2 wrist watchers in pay-first-ship-much-later rage

Microsoft’s online shipping and delivery service is in the dock, this time angering fans of Redmond’s Windows wearable. Hopeful owners of the Band 2 are complaining about Microsoft having taken their money but not delivered the goods. Band 2 is due to launch in Canada on 20 November, but the firm has been taking orders with …
Gavin Clarke, 9 Nov 2015

AMD sued: Number of Bulldozer cores in its chips is a lie, allegedly

Analysis AMD lied about the true number of Bulldozer cores in some of its Opteron and FX processors, it is claimed. Mini-chipzilla boasted that, depending on the model, the chips had either four, six, eight or 16 Bulldozer cores. A class-action lawsuit [PDF] alleges the real figures are half that. The troubled California giant is …
Huawei_sign

Huawei who? We probe the sleeping storage dragon's brains

Part I Huawei is China's Cisco or Sweden’s Ericsson without the storage hangups that affect the US networking giant. It's a $46.5bn colossus with 170,000 employees, privately-owned by its Chinese national employees, with no venture capital investment and three rotating CEOs. This is most assuredly not your average IT corporation. …
Chris Mellor, 6 Nov 2015
BlackBerry Priv. Press pic

BlackBerry Priv: Enterprise Android in a snazzy but functional package

Review If somebody told you six months ago that the best Android phone of 2015 would have been made by BlackBerry, you’d have thought they were a bit mad. BlackBerry didn’t really make phones any more, and what phones it made were marketed as a secure alternative to the Mad Max badlands of Android. And if anyone had dared suggest …