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Our happy travellers surrounded by armed police at LAX

Governance the key if you don't want mobile workers escaping your control

Mobile computing is great. No longer are we chained to our desks when using technology and doing proper work. Not only are laptops getting smaller, lighter and cheaper, it is also possible to do real, productive stuff even more freely using phones and tablets. As is always the case in computing, though, the positives of …
Dave Cartwright, 21 May 2015
Car crash

Get off the phone!! Seven out of ten US drivers put theirs and your lives at risk

Over two-thirds of drivers are dangerously distracted by their smartphones. That's according to a survey of over 2,000 US road users quizzed about their activities while piloting a ton or so of metal down the freeway at high speed. In all, 61 per cent of drivers admitted to sending or reading text messages while behind the …
Iain Thomson, 20 May 2015

You can't put a price on LOVE, says Apple after court's Samsung payout slash

Apple suffered a big legal setback today when a US court reversed part of its patent case against rival Samsung - losing a third of its $930m settlement against the huge Korean chaebol. The US Appeals Court (PDF) found that most of Apple's original infringement claims can stand, but the claim related to the overall look and feel …
Shaun Nichols, 18 May 2015
Tim Cook

Use your Apple gizmos only for good, says Tim Cook

Apple CEO Tim Cook has confirmed that Steve Jobs' vision of the fruity firm's products conquering the world has been a success, while highlighting how smartphones help tackle injustices. Opening with a joke aimed at competitors' products, Cook reminded attendees at the speech at George Washington University, Washington DC, to …
HTC One M9 Android smartphone

Record smartphones sales, but feature phones far from dead

The first quarter of 2015 saw global smartphone sales set a new record of $96 billion, with the most desirable elements being big screens and 4G. The stats come from market analysis firm GfK, which compiles figures for the top handset manufacturers — so while it's happy to trumpet the good numbers, any questions about who sold …
Simon Rockman, 15 May 2015
Snipping the ribbon to open a new Microsoft Authorized Reseller

'Nokia store? I dunno no Nokia store. This here's a Microsoft Reseller'

The gradual winding-down of Nokia as a consumer electronics brand continues, with Nokia retail stores and Care repair centres worldwide now morphing into Microsoft sales outlets. "Nokia retail stores will be called Microsoft Authorized Resellers and will showcase a range of Microsoft experiences and products including Lumia, …
Neil McAllister, 14 May 2015
A cyclist on the road in London.

UK safety app keeping lorries on the right side of cyclists

A route-planning app that will help lorries avoid left-hand turns – manoeuvres responsible for the majority of road deaths among cyclists – is being piloted in a scheme funded by the government's Transport Systems Catapult. PIE Mapping, a British company which already delivers route-planning products to hauliers, is developing …
Shenzhen downtown

Apple storms to top spot in stagnant Chinese phones market

Apple is now the top smartphone seller in China, topping foreign and domestic competitors alike in the Middle Kingdom, but overall Chinese handset sales fell for the first time in six years. A report from IDC citing sales in the first quarter of 2015 found that the Cupertino idiot tax operation has taken over the top spot on the …
Shaun Nichols, 11 May 2015
BlackBerry Classic QWERTY key smartphone

T-Mobile prods at corpse of BlackBerry, says 'me too!'

T-Mobile has taken up the cause of BlackBerry, agreeing to offer the fading firm's products in its mobile lineup, nearly two years after it dropped the Canadian's hardware from retail stores. John Legere, head of T-Mobile US, stayed true to his 'uncarrier' credo by caving to isolated user demand for new models from the Canadian …
Shaun Nichols, 7 May 2015
Microsoft Lumia 640 XL

Phablet for the biz fleet with easy typing: Microsoft Lumia 640 XL

Review One of my surprising reviews last year was Nokia’s huge, budget phablet, the Lumia 1320. It's fairly similar to the most recent Lumia 640 XL. Microsoft Lumia 640 XL Microsoft's Lumia 640 XL: available in 3G and 4G versions The previous Lumia 1320 was hard to find in the retail catalogues and even Nokia didn’t seem to care for …

Apple taxpayers swarm to stone-age iPhone 6+ purely for the bigness

Remember “Peak Apple”? Maybe you haven’t heard the phrase so much lately. Punters are paying the Apple Tax and it’s primarily because Apple has done exactly what it did before … only in a bigger package. Kantar’s smartphone market share numbers for Q1 show the Apple iPhone 6 Plus seized 44% of the US phablet market in only its …

Why MakerBot failed – but 3D printing is far from dead

Collision 2015 3D printing posterchild MakerBot moved too fast with untested technology and that's why it was forced to cut 20 per cent of its staff, abolish three divisions and closed three shops. That's according to another 3D printing company whose CEO we spoke to at the Collision conference in Las Vegas this week. Matthew Fiedler of re:3D …
Blingtastic Samsung Galaxy

Samsung S6: You might get a Sony camera in it - or you might not

When you buy a Samsung S6 you might get the impressive Sony IMX240 camera sensor ... or you might get the Samsung Isocell unit. In the published specifications for S6 and S6 Edge, Samsung doesn’t give any details on the camera sensor, saying just “16MP OIS(rear), 5MP (front)” but the two sensors are pretty different and there is …
Simon Rockman, 6 May 2015

Boffins turns landfill WinPhones into microscopes

Four University of Houston researchers say ordinary phone cameras can be turned into microscopes comparable with a US$15,000 device, by using lenses worth three cents apiece . Yu-Lung Sung, Jenn Jeang, Chia-Hsiung Lee, and Wei-Chuan Shih created a budget lens able to hone in on human skin to a magnification level of 120 using a …
Darren Pauli, 6 May 2015
Airplane! Source: Paramount Home Entertainment

iPhone case uses phone's OWN SIGNAL to charge it (forever, presumably)

A new Apple iPhone 6 case harvests energy from the smartphone's radio transmissions and use it to charge the battery, its developers claim. Nikola Labs, which touted the product at TechCrunch Disrupt on Monday - and which was selected to pitch to the crowd there "after being selected by the techCrunch editorial team and and the …
Team Register, 5 May 2015
Samsung smart TV running Tizen

New Tizen phone leaked: Remember it's not all just Android and iOS

A second Samsung Tizen phone has been leaked showing that the nice mobile OS - which has the great merit of not being Android - hasn’t been forgotten by the Korean Company. Details of the new phone have appeared on the site Tizen Experts which not only shows the phone but gives some details of the specification. It’s got an …
Simon Rockman, 5 May 2015
Apple a day  by Robert Holf https://www.flickr.com/photos/robbertholf/ CC 2.0 attribution https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Samsung back on top of smartmobe market

Samsung's sales may be sliding nastily, but box-counter IDC says the company is back on top of the world when it comes to smartphone shipments. The firm's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker for 2015's first quarter found 336.5 million smartphones shipped, worldwide. That's “ up 16.7% from the 288.5 million units in 1Q14 …
LG G4 with leather backs

Snapdragon 810 chip doesn't overheat, jilted Qualcomm sniffs at LG

Qualcomm is hitting back at the suggestion its Snapdragon 810 system-on-chip overheats, while carefully making sure it doesn't call its customer LG a cheapskate. Critics argue that if the 64-bit ARM-compatible Snapdragon 810 was problem-free, it would have been chosen by LG for the new flagship G4, which was launched this week …
Simon Rockman, 30 Apr 2015
Microsoft Build conference

'Android on Windows': Microsoft tightens noose around neck, climbs on chair

Build 2015 Microsoft’s annual developer conference Build kicks off later today, and rumours are swirling that Redmond has a bold plan to rescue Windows Phone from irrelevance. Aside from a modest 10 to 15 per cent share in some markets, the platform has gone nowhere, despite billions of dollars of support from Nokia and Microsoft. The plan …
Andrew Orlowski, 29 Apr 2015
LG G4 shot

LG slaps SIX CORE Snapdragon 808 in LEATHER G4 dog&bone – not overheaty 810

LG has whipped out its latest Android 5.1 smartphone, the G4, and pledged that the handset will burst upon an astonished USA within the next few months. It will be available with a ceramic or real leather backplate. The new smartphone looks remarkably similar to its G3 predecessor. It's got a 5.5-inch QuadHD (1440p, 538dpi) …
Iain Thomson, 28 Apr 2015
BlackBerry Leap

BlackBerry Leap: Touching biz users with a budget(ish) device

Review The Leap is the first full-touch device BlackBerry has released in 18 months, and only the third to be released in developed markets. It’s also the cheapest, with the BlackBerry UK store listing it at £199 including VAT. BlackBerry Leap Fleeting gesture: BlackBerry Leap So at first glance, the Leap promises to be a 2015 …
Andrew Orlowski, 28 Apr 2015
Satya Nadella and Stephen Elop

Microsoft's cash-leaking Nokia phones rip off patents, face import ban

A judge with the US International Trade Commission has ruled that Microsoft's Nokia handsets violate patents held by trolling outfit "non-practicing entity" InterDigital, adding to the software giant's ongoing woes in the mobile phone arena. Reuters reports that ITC Administrative Judge Andrew Essex found on Monday that Nokia- …
Neil McAllister, 27 Apr 2015

TWO-FACED Facebook: Vid calls slapped into blabber app

Ad platform Facebook has added vidcalls to its Messenger smartmobe chat app – bringing it in line with Apple's Facetime and Microsoft's Skype. A little video camcorder icon should appear in the application; tapping that should start the vid session between you and your friend. It works between iOS and Android phones, and is free …
Team Register, 27 Apr 2015
Invasion of the Body Snatchers

Nokia on phone return mutterings: They LIIED. We won't be BAAACK

Nokia has dismissed claims that suggested the company was "currently" planning a big, splashy return to the smartphone business next year. As of the second half of 2016, the Finnish firm will no longer be saddled to a deal it inked with Microsoft – which bought Nokia's devices and services unit in 2014. However, Nokia attacked …
Kelly Fiveash, 26 Apr 2015
Vodafone adds payment cards to mobile wallet

Can't wait to bonk with Apple? Then try an Android phone

Four years ago, your reporter paid for cookies with a mobile phone. Now, with Apple poised to bring some wrist action to bonking cash, we thought we’d take a look at how the competition has evolved. We’ve been trying Vodafone SmartPass, and discovered that things haven’t improved much over the last four years. In fact, Vodafone …
Bill Ray, 24 Apr 2015

Oh Em Pee! Giant Android tinkles on Apple in Google Maps graffiti

Updated A huge Google Android robot urinating on an Apple logo in Google Maps seems to have summed up the rivalry between Apple and Google fans. The cartoon can be found at these co-ordinates tucked away in Pakistan. Register staffers were able to access it at the time of publication. While vulgarity is a subjective matter, the image …
Samsung Galaxy S5

Got a Samsung Galaxy S5? Crooks can steal your fingerprint – claim

RSA 2015 Malware can snaffle fingerprints used to unlock Samsung Galaxy S5 smartphones thanks to a security blunder, researchers claim. The vulnerabilities, due to be discussed at the RSA security conference in San Francisco this week, may be present in non-Samsung Android mobiles, too. Today's smartphones recognize their owners' …
John Leyden, 23 Apr 2015

Evil Wi-Fi kills iPhones, iPods in range – 'No iOS Zone' SSL bug revealed

RSA 2015 A vulnerability in iOS 8 can be exploited by malicious wireless hotspots to repeatedly crash and reboot nearby Apple iPhones, iPads and iPods, security researchers claim. Skycure bods Adi Sharabani and Yair Amit say the attack, dubbed "No iOS Zone", will render vulnerable iOS things within range unstable – or even entirely …
Darren Pauli, 22 Apr 2015

Google guru: Android doesn't have malware, it has Potentially Harmful Applications™ instead

RSA 2015 Malware doesn't exist on Android, Google says, but Potentially Harmful Applications™ do. That linguistic flip is one of many at play in the Chocolate Factory's Android security division, which has dumped various general infosec terms overboard. Lead Android engineer Adrian Ludwig told the RSA Conference in San Francisco today …
Darren Pauli, 21 Apr 2015

Nokia will be the mobile comeback kid in 2016 – wishful-thinking sources

Nokia is gearing up for a bombastic return to the smartphone world in 2016, according to new whispers. The Finnish firm's Nokia Technologies division has been quietly hiring staff, and already has products under development, with an eye to reenter the market next year, we're told. The second half of 2016, not coincidentally, is …
Neil McAllister, 20 Apr 2015

Windows 10 MURDERED your Lumia? Microsoft says it may have a fix

Microsoft has made some changes to the Windows Phone Recovery Tool that should keep it from accidentally disabling users' phones, but Lumia owners whose devices have already been trashed by the tool aren't necessarily out of the woods yet. Complaints began surfacing last week that customers who tried to roll their devices back …
Neil McAllister, 20 Apr 2015
A fake tattoo on the leg of Canberra Raiders footballer Sandor Earl, sent by Huawei as an April Fool

Huawei P8: Chinese mobes have arrived and the West should tremble

Analysis Networking kit giant Huawei didn’t even make mobile phones four years ago, but its classy new P8 flagship shows what astonishing progress it’s made to come within striking distance of the market leaders. The Shenzen-based, employee-owned company unveiled its P8 at a huge, splashy launch in London’s Old Billingsgate Market. There …
Andrew Orlowski, 20 Apr 2015
High Spec phone

Chinese 'Superphone' manufacturer declares war on Apple

Under the moniker of “Superphones”, streaming TV company LeTV has launched a trio of high-end mobes with all the subtlety of a hippo with toothache. As the first devices to have a new reversible USB type C, the specs are impressive. The key application for the device is LeTV’s over-the-top video service, akin to Netflix. As a …
Simon Rockman, 20 Apr 2015
Broken bottle by https://www.flickr.com/photos/veisto/ CC 2.0

iPhone vs. Galaxy fight hospitalises two after beer bottle stabbing

Tulsa, Oklahoma, TV station KTUL is reporting that two men were left with “cuts all over their bodies … covered with blood” after an argument over the merits of Android and iOS “escalated”. The station's report suggests the two were discussing the competing merits of the iPhone and Samsung's new offering – probably the Galaxy S6 …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Apr 2015
Android icon desktop toys

Android finally shows up for work, app in hand

Google has finally published its BYOD app, Android for Work, adding to the already schizophrenic work-life balance environment for the devices. The software has just popped up on Google Play, where it’s described thus: The Android for Work app provides the ultimate solution to get work done on your Android device and separates …
Simon Rockman, 17 Apr 2015
Windows 10 Phone build 10051

Windows Phone 10: Less stuff that does more – plus IE-killer Project Spartan

Hands On Microsoft recently released its Windows 10 Technical Preview for phones, build 10051, as part of its Windows Insider series. This is by no means a stable build, especially on a low-end phone like our Lumia 635. The built-in apps crash from time to time and sometimes the entire OS freezes. Another common problem is chopped-off …
Tim Anderson, 17 Apr 2015
Google handwriting recognition app

Google's new scribble-tab-ulous handwriting interface for Android

First Look Google has popped the lid off its Google Handwriting Input, new Android software that lets you input your text longhand in any 'droid app. The Chocolate Factory's research arm says handwriting recognition is needed because touchscreen keyboards remain modestly effective and while “Voice input is an option, but there are …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Apr 2015
troll

Cram my freebies into Android phones and get a royalty discount, says Microsoft (allegedly)

A new report claims Microsoft hasn't been offering Android device vendors any money to bundle its mobile apps on their phones and slabs; rather, it has offered to reduce the tolls it collects from the mobe-makers. Citing sources among supply chain players in China and Taiwan, DigiTimes Research says Redmond has offered to cut …
Neil McAllister, 16 Apr 2015
Microsoft on Android

Microsoft cramming free stuff into Galaxy S6es? Not so fast – US telcos

Microsoft has been working with smartphone makers to get its mobile apps onto more customers' phones, but as long as carriers have a say in it, Redmond might not be able to obtain the broad reach it's hoping for. Samsung announced in March that its new Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge flagship phones would ship with Microsoft's …
Neil McAllister, 14 Apr 2015
Microsoft Lumia 640 Windows Phone

Life after Nokia: Microsoft Lumia 640 budget WinPho blower

Review Is the Nokia Microsoft Lumia 640 an Office subscription with a free phone, or a phone with a free Office subscription? Either way, it's likely to be the biggest mobile device for Microsoft since the days of Zune and Kin – and the company is getting more aggressive with its marketing. Microsoft Lumia 640 Windows Phone Office …
Andrew Orlowski, 14 Apr 2015
Kids on wall. Pic: US Army/Capt Emily Skolozynski

Nokia: Yes, we're chatting up Alcatel-Lucent

Nokia has confirmed it is in talks to snap up Alcatel-Lucent. In a statement the former phone maker said it is in "advanced discussions with respect to a potential full combination, which would take the form of a public exchange offer by Nokia for Alcatel-Lucent." Nokia said there can be no certainty at this stage that these …
Kat Hall, 14 Apr 2015
Motorola Moto G 4G

Motorola's 5-incher finds the G-spot: Moto G 4G budget Android smartie

Review Back in December 2013, I hailed the first generation Motorola Moto G as the best affordable smartphone on the market. If you want a reasonably compact 4.5-inch device, then, arguably, it still is the best, thanks to a midlife facelift that added a microSD slot and 4G reception. Motorola Moto G 4G Motorola Moto G 4G A larger, …
Alun Taylor, 13 Apr 2015