18th > November > 2004 Archive
TiVo loses its MoJo
Time shifting DVR pioneer TiVo will soon display pop-up ads when users attempt to skip commercials, the LA Times reports today. TiVo owners will still be able to fast forward, but will be forced to watch a billboard style ad on screen.
Telecoms review? What telecoms review?
British businesses are so clueless about telecoms policy in the UK that two thirds of companies are unaware that Ofcom is publishing a review into the industry today.
Rucksacks: an evaluation and comparison
If you don't attend many conferences you won't have noticed that it seems to be fashionable to give out rucksacks, backpacks and haversacks as freebies to delegates. However, just how good are these rucksacks? Can they stand up to a proper benchmark? Are some products better than others? Is there a message that we can take from the quality of rucksack with respect to that company's software? All (well, some) will be revealed.
Ofcom tells BT: shape up, or split up
Ofcom has rejected calls to break up BT, following its review of the telecommunications sector. The regulatory is still wielding the threat of a forced split as a stick with which to beat the company, if it does not play ball.
Creative declares 'war' on Apple's iPod
Digital music player maker Creative has pledged to spend $100m to out-market Apple in a bid to take the market away from the iPod.
People want to pay by phone
In a very short space of time mobile phones have become nearly ubiquitous in many societies around the globe. As the ratio of the number of cell phones per head of population moves towards one, the network operators are keen to uncover new methods of extracting money from their subscribers, in both the contract and prepay sectors. The question then becomes: are consumers happy to use their phones to buy new services?
Use Linux and you will be sued, Ballmer tells governments
Asian governments using Linux will be sued for IP violations, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said today in Singapore. He did not specify that Microsoft would be the company doing the suing, but it's difficult to read the claim as anything other than a declaration of IP war.
Nokia demos mobile IPv6 call
Nokia has demonstrated what it billed as the industry's first mobile IPv6 call. The demo, at this week's 3G World Congress in Hong Kong, featured real-time streaming video between two CDMA Dual-Stack handset on separate CDMA access networks using Mobile IPv6.
RIM takes active-user total to 2m
Research in Motion was in part mood yesterday after declaring it now has more than 2m subscribers making regular use of its Blackberry hardware and the push email service that drives it.
UWB approved, standard imminent
It's supposed to be official that UWB (ultra-wide band) wireless is approved, and a standard is being agreed. If you believe any such thing, you're horribly gullible; and the dispute inside the wideband club (MBOA) has reached the point where there are people saying: "It will never get sorted." And amongst those sceptics, I hear powerful voices from the Bluetooth SIG (special interest group).
PowerVR MBX gains OpenGL ES Linux support
Imagination Technologies has developed drivers for its PowerVR MBX mobile 3D graphics chip that enable OpenGL ES support on devices running Linux, the company said this week.
Petco settles with FTC over cyber security gaffe
Pet supply retailer Petco Animal Supplies Inc. will be on a short cybersecurity leash for the next 20 years to settle a Federal Trade Commission action over a security hole on its e-commerce site that may have left as many as 500,000 customer credit card numbers exposed to hackers.
IE in fresh security drama
IE is subject to a trio of unpatched vulnerabilities, security firm Secunia warned yesterday. It warns that two of the three unfixed security bugs are on the "critical" list.
Virgin Mobile ups customers, drops profits
Virgin Mobile, the newly listed mobile operator, announced a 40 per cent rise in its half yearly earnings, driven by a substantial increase in subscriber numbers. The company now boasts over 4.6m subscribers, and said 647,500 of those had signed up in the last six months.
Maxtor ups desktop, enterprise HDD warranty periods
Hard drive maker Maxtor has followed rival manufacturer Seagate and upped the duration of the warranty it offers for enterprise-class drives.
Seagate ships 'world first' 400GB PC HDDs
Hard drive maker Seagate has begun shipping what it claims is the world's highest capacity PC hard drive: a 400GB beast that's also the first drive of its class to hold up to 133GB on a single platter.
HTC 'Blue Angel' Wi-Fi PocketPC phone
Reg reviewNo company has done as much to advance Microsoft Windows Mobile telephony hardware than Taiwan's HTC. The company's smart phones have been offered by numerous vendors and networks, as have its phone-equipped PocketPCs, most notably as the O2 XDA family. And not content to find one good design and stick with it, over the last few years HTC has continued to evolve each line.
Russian fined for virus-writing exploits
A Russian member of well-known 29A virus writers group has been fined 3,000 roubles (approximately £57) after he admitted writing malicious code.
Salesforce sales up
Pay-as-you-go customer relationship management software provider Salesforce.com has posted an 80 per cent rise in revenues and new customers.
Website blamed for student suicide
A Coroner has condemmed an online suicide guide after a medical student hanged himself following directions on the site. Liverpool Coroner Andre Rebello asked Yahoo! to pull the plug on the Holland-based site, but the company refused.
MSN signs up Overture for another year
Overture, the paid-for search broker, has retained MSN, its second biggest client after its parent company, Yahoo!, for another year.
CSA boss falls on sword over £456m IT system fiasco
The boss of the Child Support Agency has been forced out by the abject failure of its computer system supplied by EDS.
DiData back in profit
Shares in South African disty and IT services group DiData rose this afternoon after the firm made it back into profit.
Sony talks to Grokster
The chairman of Sony BMG Rolf Schmidt-Holtz has admitted the music giant is in early talks with file sharing network Grokster.
MoD forms electronic warfare 'Tower of Excellence'
The MoD today announced the formation of a "collaborative research group" uniting the Ministry, industry and academia for an applied research programme into electronic warfare.
Poland scuppers EU software patent directive
The Polish government has withdrawn its support for the European software patent directive. At a cabinet meeting in Warsaw yesterday, officials concluded that the directive does not meet its original objective of limiting patents on software and business methods in Europe.
AOL goes a bundle on consumer security
AOL has added a range of features to ward off computer viruses, intrusive spyware programs and spam to a special edition of its internet access software. Called AOL 9.0 Security Edition, the release is the first version of America Online to focus specifically on security. It is available as a free upgrade to existing AOL subscribers in the US from today. Versions for other countries may come later.
PeopleSoft threatens to sue Oracle
PeopleSoft and Oracle are letting the venom gush, as their long-standing battle approaches a possible end this week.
Ofcom review 'misses golden opportunity'
Ofcom has "missed a golden opportunity to open up the UK communications market to greater competition, innovation and investment", according to internet lobby group UKIF.
IBM benchmark leaves server rivals breathless
You knew it wouldn't take long for IBM to start rolling out the benchmarks once its new 64-processor Unix server hit the streets. Few, however, could have imagined that the company would so completely crush past marks.
Home Office stalls on weapons scanner health risks
Are your children being irradiated? Are you being irradiated? The UK Home Office seems unconcerned by the question, despite being responsible for at least one of the government organisations wielding the devices that might be doing the irradiating. Weapons scanners that use x-rays are now being tested by the Metropolitan Police and at Heathrow airport, and while the effect of a single scan will probably be negligible, the actual health risk will depend on the nature of the particular deployments, and on the individuals being scanned. So they should therefore not be deployed casually, without careful prior consideration, on the basis that they're 'harmless'.
Sun's finishing of the year with a storage run
While Sun Microsystems' Solaris team stole the headlines this week, the company's storage group was busy as well, rolling out new software and hardware products to try and help out what has been one of Sun's least impressive businesses.