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Windows 10 blamed (partly) for stalled PC sales recovery

The recovery in PC sales has been postponed until 2017 – and Microsoft and Windows 10 are partly to blame. Worldwide PC shipments will now fall by 8.7 per cent by the end of the year and growth won’t return for another two years, the IDC said. The number cruncher had expected that the arrival of Windows 10 in July would …
Gavin Clarke, 27 Aug 2015
Game of War advertisement

FBI collars exec who allegedly tried to nick secrets of game fronted by babe Kate Upton

A former games company executive, who allegedly tried to steal trade secrets from his old bosses and flee to China, has been arrested and charged by the FBI. The US Department of Justice (DoJ) claims Jing Zeng, formerly the director of global infrastructure at Machine Zone, stole confidential information from the games maker, …
Shaun Nichols, 26 Aug 2015
Angry Birds 2 poster

Angry Birds maker Rovio takes aim at staff, axes a third of them

Angry Birds maker Rovio has announced plans to lay off 260 employees. The Finnish mobile-games-developer-turned-entertainment-franchise said on Wednesday that roughly one third of its work force will be cut as it narrows its focus on its core games and media businesses. "This is personally a difficult decision," said Rovio …
Shaun Nichols, 26 Aug 2015

Glaring flaw in Apple car hype-gasm: The iGiant likes to make money

Despite rumblings of secret research projects and hiring sprees, Apple is not going to be building its own cars anytime soon, says one analyst. Edison Investment Research analyst Richard Windsor told The Register that Apple's preferred model of high profit margins wouldn't translate well into the world of auto manufacturing …
Shaun Nichols, 26 Aug 2015
Mobile Fusion 2

Your smartphone can be a 3D scanner, say boffins

Video Microsoft Research and Oxford University are showing off a chunk of software that turns smartphones into 3D scanners – running fast enough that if it's released, it'll be handy for 3D printing enthusiasts. To be published in IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics, the six-degrees-of-freedom (6DoF) scanning …
Taipei, Taiwan

Taiwan Supreme Court rules former TSMC exec leaked chip secrets to Samsung

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) has reportedly won a lawsuit against a former employee over claims that he leaked details of the chip fabber's 28-nanometer process technology to archrival Samsung. As a result of the judgment, Liang Mong-song, a former top R&D man at TSMC, has been barred from working for …
Neil McAllister, 25 Aug 2015
MultiFab products

Still 3D printing with one material? We can use TEN, say MIT eggheads

Video Designers at MIT have used off-the-shelf components and some nifty software to build a cheap combination 3D printer and scanner unit that can use ten different materials at a time. Youtube Video Multi-material 3D printers aren't new, of course, just very, very expensive – typically costing hundreds of thousands of dollars. …
Iain Thomson, 25 Aug 2015
cyanogen mobes

Wileyfox smartphones: SD card, no bloatware, Cyanogen, big battery – yes to all!

New British mobe maker Wileyfox has launched a pair of Cyanogen smartphones. The £199 SIM-free Storm has an eight-core 64-bit ARMv8 Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 system-on-chip running at up to 1.5GHz, 32GB of storage and 3GB of RAM, a 20Mp Sony EXMOR main camera and an 8Mp front-facing cam, 1920 x 1080 5.5” touchscreen display, and …
Simon Rockman, 25 Aug 2015
Motorola Moto G 4G

Vodafone UK rocks the bloat with demands for vanilla Android

Vodafone UK wants to sell Android phones which are as close to stock (as Google intended) as possible, and the red company's favourite device for this is the Moto G. Writing on the Vodafone company blog, Motorola senior marketing director Marcus Frost unsurprisingly extoled the virtues of the new phone – but he's not just …
Simon Rockman, 25 Aug 2015

Qualcomm flashes Snapdragon 820's bits again – this time it's DSP

Qualcomm has lifted the veil a little further from its upcoming Snapdragon 820 mobile system-on-chip, sharing details of its new digital signal processor (DSP). The chipmaker has been dribbling out information about the Snapdragon 820 ahead of its launch, having already dropped a few tidbits about its graphics processing unit …
Neil McAllister, 25 Aug 2015

Blueprints revealed: Oracle crams Sparc M7 and InfiniBand into cheaper 'Sonoma' chips

Hot Chips 2015 Oracle revealed on Monday the details of its new bargain-basement Sparc processor code-named Sonoma. The blueprints were shown at this year's Hot Chips semiconductor conference in Cupertino, California – and we've got a copy of the slides. Sonoma is billed as a "low-cost Sparc processor for enterprise workloads," that you're …
Chris Williams, 24 Aug 2015
Samsung steels the internet meme

Samsung emits Galaxy S6 Edge+ 'inboxing' video

Unboxing and teardowns used to be something that fanbois did, but marketing savvy Samsung has hijacked the genre with a video of its own. Calling it an “inboxing”, the video shows the phone being assembled, not by a worker on a production line, but by a well-dressed man in the kind of setting you only see in carefully crafted …
Simon Rockman, 24 Aug 2015
Sony Xperia M4 Aqua 4G Android Smartphone

Sony Xperia M4 Aqua 4G: The Android smartie that can take its drink

Review Read any technology site and the advice is pretty unequivocal: if you want an Android smartphone for less than £200 that’s not an import, then buy the Mk 3 Motorola Moto G. Sony Xperia M4 Aqua 4G Android Smartphone Drinking buddy: Sony's Xperia M4 Aqua I'm not about to deny that the new Moto G is a nice bit of kit, or that …
Alun Taylor, 24 Aug 2015
Apple iPhone 6 and 6 Plus

Apple recalling iPhone 6 Pluses to correct their iSight

Apple is asking owners of its iPhone 6 Plus phablet to check the device's serial number, because some batches of the device are producing blurry photos. Cupertino says the problem is attributable to “a component that may fail causing your photos to look blurry.” If that's the case, entering your serial number here will reveal if …
Simon Sharwood, 24 Aug 2015
Empty phone battery

Brit hydro fuel cell maker: our tech charges iPhone 6 for a week

Brit-based hydrogen fuel cell maker Intelligent Energy (IE) reckons it has developed an iPhone that can run for a week after one charge of the battery - which might just help massage the loss-making firm’s bottom line. The Loughborough-based business has produced a working prototype of Apple’s sixth generation smartmobe …
Paul Kunert, 23 Aug 2015

Win8 inventory glut? Yep, it's all Microsoft's fault, says HP

HP has criticised the way Microsoft rolled out the latest OS, claiming it was the root cause of an inventory pile-up of Windows 8 consumer PCs across the industry that will take time to “flush” through. Channel analyst Context recently revealed that no computers pre-installed with Windows 10 were sat with European distributors …
Paul Kunert, 21 Aug 2015

Mobile 'fault' forces BA flight into unscheduled Russian landing

British Airways has denied that an exploding BlackBerry was to blame for a flight diversion this afternoon. AirLive.net tweeted that an errant BlackBerry caused Flight BA18 to make an unscheduled landing in Russia at around 1pm local time. But according to BA: “This is incorrect. There was no exploding BlackBerry. Our crew …
Jennifer Baker, 21 Aug 2015
Inateck USB hub with Magicport

Embracing the life-changing qualities of USB power packs and battery extenders

I'm far from picky when it comes to reviews. I like my tech in any shape and size; any tool has merit. Some days I'm playing with a supercomputer, others I'm testing consumer products. Getting to test ultra-high end gear is always fun, but in reality it's not something that everyone really benefits from. It seems as though the …
Josh Folland, 21 Aug 2015
Intel Skylake unlocked Core i5 and i7 CPUs

All aboard the Skylake: How Intel stopped worrying and learned to love overclocking

Review Nope, it’s not the next instalment of the James Bond franchise, but Intel’s eagerly awaited successor to the Broadwell platform. Skylake, like Broadwell, is built on a 14nm process but this time we get yet another new socket, as the new CPUs use the LGA1151 Socket. Intel Skylake unlocked Core i5 and i7 CPUs Ready for a CPU …
Simon Crisp, 21 Aug 2015
The Infinity Modular Laptop

OLPC heir reveals modular laptop design

One Education, an Australian offshoot of the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) project, has opened preview sales for an heir to the XO computer. The “Infinity” has a modular design so while the quad-core, 1.5GHz CPU is baked in, it's possible to replace the battery, camera and just about anything else thanks to the presence of three …
Simon Sharwood, 21 Aug 2015
BlackBerry Venice

Leaked images claim to show BlackBerry's first Android phone

Images have hit the web of what is purportedly BlackBerry's first Android handset. Eye candy. pic.twitter.com/GtJwOfOus8 — Evan Blass (@evleaks) August 19, 2015 The photos and short video clips were posted by blogger Evan Blass, aka Evleaks, who got them from an unnamed source. They allegedly show a device to be released …
Neil McAllister, 20 Aug 2015
Small screen multitasking

Yet another Android app security bug: This time 'everything is affected'

Yet another potentially serious security flaw has been revealed in Android. This time the problem involves the mobile operating system's ability to run more than one app at once – as opposed to its handling of multimedia messages, which was the crux of a cyber* of vulnerabilities last month. The latest security blunder opens …
John Leyden, 20 Aug 2015

People bored of mobes, say magic quadrant wizards

Global spend on smartphones rose at the slowest rate since 2013 for the second quarter of 2015, according to magic quadrant wizards Gartner. Worldwide sales of smart mobes totalled 330 million, up 13.5 per cent from the second quarter of 2014. In contrast sales for the whole of 2014 rose 28.4 per cent to 1.2 billion, compared …
Kat Hall, 20 Aug 2015
Yamaha MusicCast

Watch out Sonos! Here's the second coming of Yamaha MusicCast

Pics Ever had a great idea but not everyone seemed to think so? That was pretty much what happened to Yamaha when it first launched MusicCast back in 2003. A CD-ripping music server with wireless client speakers and Ethernet too, if needed. What a great idea. Yamaha MusicCast A cast of thousands... not quite but Yamaha's …
Bob Dormon, 20 Aug 2015
Intel compute stick

Intel's Compute Sticks stick it to Windows To Go, Chromecast

Quick review "Little Stick. Big Surprise." That's what Intel says about its Compute Sticks, the new 'smaller than an iPhone' mini-PCs designed for portability and ease of use The Intel Compute Stick (ICS) is perhaps best thought of as the mutant offspring of a Raspberry Pi on steroids and Google Chromecast. The offspring emerges as a tiny …
Adam Fowler, 20 Aug 2015
EE 4G banner

EE Harrier Mini grounded by errant Wi-Fi calling upgrade

An official upgrade to EE Harrier Mini mobes is bricking them. The upgrade, which was pushed out to customers last week, requires a back-to-base fix. Comments on the EE community forum indicate that the devices will not get past the power-on screen after they have been upgraded. Some people say that they have been given a …
Simon Rockman, 19 Aug 2015
Sony Vaio 11 Duo hybrid PC Ultrabook

Vaio returns from the dead wearing sharper suit, bolts in neck

Sony Vaio is making a comeback overseas, with plans to relaunch the brand on Windows 10 devices in the US and Brazil later this year. Last year, Sony axed 5,000 workers worldwide and offloaded its loss-making PC business to private equity firm Japan Industrial Partners (JIP). Chief executive of JIP Yoshimi Ota told the Wall …
Kat Hall, 19 Aug 2015

A magic bracelet that unlocks PCs, dancing robot spiders, and more in Intel's circus

IDF15 It's party time at Intel. The mixtape is in the deck. The beers are chilling in tub. The chip giant has 99 per cent of the data-center market. Its profits in a single quarter can slip a few per cent, and still stand at $2.7bn. AMD is still AMD. What has Intel got to worry about? OK, mobiles, PCs, laptops, and tablets are …
Chris Williams, 19 Aug 2015
iFixit open iPhone 3GS

Apple: Samsung ripped off our phone patent! USPTO: What patent?

The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) could be set to deal a significant blow to the $548m payout Apple is due from Samsung by invalidating a key patent in the case. According to a preliminary judgment obtained by blogger Florian Mueller, the USPTO has decided that one of Apple's smartphone design patents, filed in 2008, …
Shaun Nichols, 18 Aug 2015
The structure of a solid battery

Boffins dump the fluids to build solid state lithium battery

Researchers at MIT and Samsung have built a battery that eschews the use of liquid electrolytes in favor of a solid state substance that offers some serious benefits. Most commercial lithium-ion batteries use a liquid electrolyte to transport charged particles and provide power. But there are problems with this – the liquid …
Iain Thomson, 18 Aug 2015

Android apps are flooding on to jailbroken Win10 phones

The addition of Android compatibility for Windows phones was called a "suicide note" back in April, and now somebody's composing the first draft. Intrepid tinkerers have opened up previews of Windows 10 for phones to allow a wide range of Android apps run without modification. Reports suggest that at this stage, far more Android …
Andrew Orlowski, 18 Aug 2015
ZTE Nubia Z9 Mini Android smartphone

ZTE Nubia Z9 Mini: The able Android smartie the company won't sell you

Review The Nubia brand is largely unknown in the UK, because ZTE chooses not to flog its so-named wares here in Blighty. Nevertheless, international-spec Nubia Z9s are reasonably easy to acquire and when Chinese wholesaler GearBest offered to lend us one to poke with the El Reg reviewing stick, we thought: why not? ZTE Nubia Z9 Mini …
Alun Taylor, 18 Aug 2015
Android 6 Marshmallow Logo

'Marshmallow' picked as moniker for Android 6.0

Alphabet's search, ads, cloud and mobile business Google has revealed that the next version of its Android mobile operating system will be called “Marshmallow”. Google gives each version of Android the name of a sweet and also advances each new Android by one letter of the alphabet. Hence Android's current version is Lolliop, …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Aug 2015
Windows 10 build 10130, showing Microsoft's new Solitaire Collection

Windows 10 PC sales boost? Don't hold your breath, say analysts

Despite this year's release of Windows 10, notebook PC shipments are not going to see an increase over last year. This according to analysts with ABI Research, who project that shipments will be flat compared to 2014. The entire portable market, which includes Chromebooks, ultraportables (such as the MacBook Air), netbooks, …
Shaun Nichols, 17 Aug 2015

Rambus decides to enter the semiconductor chip manufacturing game

Serial litigant and denizen of chip makers' nightmare realms, Rambus, known for its licensing business model and the resultant court cases, has announced it is getting into the manufacturing game itself. Rambus has stated that its products will aid the company to move away from its often litigation-linked business model. CEO …
Parrot Minidrone Jumping Sumo

Feeling a physical present: Ten summer games and gadgets

Product Roundup Bored of summer yet? I'm guessing that you, just like everyone else, assumed that as a lecturer, I get the summer off. No chance. Yet on the days I do escape this hellhole of forthcoming teenage subjugation, I am keeping myself busy – during unpredictable lightning storms, or sweltering and unseasonable conditions – playing with …
Lucy Orr, 17 Aug 2015
One Nation Under CCTV

Still safe as houses: More CCTV for the masses

Feature Last week, I looked at two home camera systems: Arlo from Netgear and Welcome from Netatmo. To recap, Arlo is pretty much a straightforward cloud-based CCTV system, offering you cameras with motion sensors and notification, together with an app to view things on your phone. Netatmo's Welcome is a stand-alone camera – again …
Nigel Whitfield, 15 Aug 2015
Project Ara - swappable hardware mobile

Er, uh ... sorry! Project Ara will not launch this year after all

Google had bad news on Thursday for fans of Project Ara, its DIY modular smartphone. It seems it won't launch this year, after all. In January, the Chocolate Factory's Advanced Technologies and Products (ATAP) group said the devices, which let owners mix and match from an assortment of batteries, screens, cameras, and other …
Neil McAllister, 15 Aug 2015
Samsung Galaxy S4

US appeals court: Yes, Samsung ... sigh … you still have to pay Apple

Samsung's attempt to wriggle out of paying $548m to Apple has been shot down by the federal circuit court in Washington DC. Back in 2012, the South Korean giant was ordered by a district court in California to pay Apple just over half a billion dollars for shipping Android smartphones that infringing the iPhone maker's patents …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Aug 2015

Hey, Apple, we’re watching Faulty Tellies. Gonna tell us why?

Third generation Apple TVs were shipped with a faulty part, and the company has begun to contact consumers to confirm the issue and offer a replacement. Cupertino has not specified what the faulty part is, although MacRumours reports the fruity firm will offer gleaming new devices to replace the mysteriously banjaxed old ones …
S6 edge and edge+

Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge+: 4K-positive fun for ... vloggers?!

First Look It's only a few months since Samsung unveiled the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge, its latest attempts to make some money out of Android. They're pretty decent phones, as we concluded in our in-depth review. S6 edge and edge+ It seems barely larger than the S6 Edge (left), but the Edge+ (right) packs in a 5.7 inch screen On Thursday …
Nigel Whitfield, 14 Aug 2015
Monty Python foot UHDTV

Budget UHD TVs arrive – but were the 4Kasts worth listening to?

Breaking Fad When you can buy a 4K telly at the supermarket, along with your bangers and mash, you know Ultra HD has entered the mainstream. Retail giant Asda is now stocking the Polaroid-branded P55D600, a 55-inch Ultra HD screen for just £699. If you want to really push the boat out, you can heft the 65-inch version into your wonky-wheeled …
Steve May, 14 Aug 2015