Jun 1 2010

Intel Executive Forecasts His Company’s Direction

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Intel employee David Perlmutter, the executive vice president and co-general manager of the architecture group, has recently spoken about his company’s future direction.

Perlmutter says that the computer market is continuing to grow, as are data centers and cloud computing. Due to the increasing amount of devices people will own, Intel will also grow because it makes a lot of the chips for these devices. Many of the devices at the Computex trade show in Taipei (which Perlmutter attended) are going to be based on Intel’s Atom processor.

Perlmutter also added that in 2011, most of Intel’s revenue will come from chips in personal computers and data centers. The company also plans to ship one billion chips within five years. Though it sounds like an almost unachievable goal, Intel plans to ship over 350 million units in 2010 and hopes to double that number in 2011.

Perlmutter says his company is at least a year ahead of some other chip companies and all in all, he sees a rosy future for Intel.

Via The Wall Street Journal, image via Intel.

May 13 2010

Apple Offers MobileMe Upgrade

On Wednesday Apple posted a notice offering an upgrade in MobileMe, its cloud-based service that offers email and photo galleries, among other things. The upgrade concerns a beta version of the MobileMe mail service. MobileMe users now have a small banner that says, “Mail Beta coming soon” and can request an invitation.

Apple has said that the new version of the MobileMe mail has a widescreen option, single-click archiving, server rules, a formatting toolbar, faster performance, and improved security. Users’ beta access is not activated immediately.

I do not use MobileMe—I tried the free trial and found it very confusing (when I informed an Apple employee of this, he was shocked). I do think that MobileMe mail needs an upgrade because it is very unreliable, as some friends who use it have sent me emails that were never delivered.

Via PC Magazine, image via Apple.

May 13 2010

CherryPal Android-Based Asia Netbook to Ship for $99

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Looks like CherryPal, a company that manufacturers ultra low-end computers, is releasing another laptop.  The new “Asia” netbook will cost $100, but buyer beware — you’ll get what you pay for.

Even though they are similarly priced, the 7″ CherryPal Asia netbook will be slightly better than the CherryPal Africa.  Asia will feature a 533MHz ARM A9 processor, 256MB of RAM, and 2 GB of storage space.  Not the most impressive tech specs, but on the bright side, the netbook will also have a decent number of USB slots, 3 to be exact.  The Asia netbook will run on the Android operating system and put a large emphasis on cloud computing.

There will also be a slightly more expensive model of the CherryPal Asia.  It’ll run for $148 and will have a [slightly larger] 10″ screen and webcam. No pictures are yet available for this netbook.

Via CrunchGear.

Mar 3 2010

MobileMe Executive Appointed CTO at Thumbplay

Apple’s MobileMe technology executive has been appointed chief technology officer at Thumbplay, a cloud-based music company.

Pablo Calamera was director of Apple’s MobileMe and spent ten years at Apple during his career. As CTO at Thumbplay, he will report to Evan Schwartz, the CEO of Thumbplay.

Calamera will oversee all technology initiatives at Thumbplay. The company is in private beta in the United States and offers unlimited, on-demand access to songs. It is currently available for select BlackBerry devices but will eventually be offered for Android and the iPhone sometime this year.

I am hoping that this means Apple will have someone else in charge of MobileMe who will make changes to the service. I had a free trial of MobileMe several months ago and as an Apple user I expected to love it. Instead, I did not like it at all and found it to be rather user-unfriendly. Many people are satisfied with MobileMe, but I think it needs improvement.

Via CNET, image via Apple.

Mar 1 2010

IceWEB to Support iPhone and iPod Touch

IceWEB, a company that offers online storage, said in a press release today that it will begin to support the iPhone and iPod Touch. The new product will be called IceShare and will be available in the App Store for purchase download, or as a corporate license.

According to IceWEB, data should be available for mobile users wherever they are. IceWEB’s new service will give iPhone and iPod Touch users full access to any data stored on IceWEB’s servers. They will be able to open, download, upload, and create files either through WiFi or 3G.

IceWEB is headquartered outside of Washington, D.C. It manufactures appliances and offers storage solutions and cloud computing services.

It sounds to me that this new offering will be a competitor to Apple’s MobileMe. After all, MobileMe offers data storage and cloud computing to Apple customers. It costs $99 per year and offers extra services, such as email and a handy feature called “Find my iPhone,” which helps users find their lost iPhones through GPS. It will be interesting to see how IceWEB prices their service and how it differs from MobileMe.

Via PR Newswire, image via IceWEB.

Feb 5 2010

iTunes Becomes More Web-Based

Apple has slowly been moving its popular application iTunes to the web. After Apple’s acquisition of Lala, a streaming music service, some analysts expected this would happen.

On February 4, Apple introduced a new feature that allows users to preview App Store applications in web browser. Instead of launching iTunes every time to see application details, now a preview page is shown, though the dialogue window asking whether to launch iTunes or not still appears.

Apple’s slow conversion of iTunes to a more web-based service will be good for users with large iTunes libraries. iTunes is a good application, but it can be quite cumbersome to launch for users with lots of media.

Apple first started making iTunes more web-based in November 2009, when it launched iTunes Preview, a way for users to view music in their browsers. Then, in the beginning of this year, Apple added the ability to preview music within a browser.

There has been speculation that Apple will eventually have a completely web-based iTunes—an iTunes.com—which will add to iTunes’ appeal.

Via The Independent, image via Apple.

Dec 1 2009

Google Chrome OS Plays Music On The Cloud With Lala

The netbook world has been eagerly anticipating the Google Chromium OS since its initial announcement just a few months back, and Dell has already released a beta for those of us too impatient for the real thing. However, the work isn’t over; we could be getting a number of unanticipated but welcome features come the official release.

A recent demo displays the Chromium UI with a user accessing music playback application Lala. Google already uses Lala pop-up windows to play music through Lala in its search engine, and hopes to implement this as an attraction to prospective Chromium netbook buyers.

Lala sells streamable songs for 10 cents each and hosts users’ old music collections in the cloud. This will allow owners to get their music from anywhere with internet access without lugging around gigs of data, something netbook lovers in particular tend to appreciate.

And even if you don’t have internet access, Lala says its upcoming iPhone application will keep the last few hundred songs you’ve listened to on tab so you can play them without the internet. This could be a welcome addition to Chrome as well.

Anyway, here’s the demo:

Via Wired.

Oct 8 2009

Thin Client Cloud Computing And The Jolicloud Netbook OS

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We’ve been eagerly anticipating Tariq Krim’s Jolicloud OS for months, and while it isn’t available just yet, Krim has some interesting things to say about the motivation for the OS in the meantime.

Krim, who founded Netvibes, said that the “thin client concept is “more feasible now than ever.” What this means is that netbooks, being easy to replace, have users that want to preserve their settings and credentials even as they switch between machines.

Based on Ubuntu, Jolicloud is still in alpha mode but raised $4.2 million in first round funding this July.

Recent availability of cheaper hardware and widespread wireless internet access has made cloud services all the more plausible. It will be exciting to see how this translates into extra features in Jolicloud.

Be sure to check out Jolicloud’s main site for more information.

Jul 29 2009

SugarSync Remote Access Tool For Android Netbooks Coming Soon

SugarSync

While Android netbooks have been slow to hit the market, developer Sharpcast will be ready to rock with its new cross-platform media synchronizing SugarSync software whenever they do.

SugarSync can be used as a remote access tool or an online backup. You get the apps for free and pay for storage, and you can access files you upload from multiple desktops, laptops, netbooks or phones.

Sharpcast only guarantees SugarSync’s mobile photo transfer app on Android phones, but once SugarSync comes to Android netbooks all file types should be available.

You can tap one button on the Android start screen to access your uploaded files.

Downsides include the fact that SugarSync takes time to set up on desktop computers. Furthermore, uploading files from smartphones takes a long time. Hopefully both of these issues should be resolved for the netbook version of SugarSync.

Be sure to check out SugarSync on a variety of platforms:

SugarSync for Windows
SugarSync for Mac
SugarSync for Windows Mobile
SugarSync for iPhone
SugarSync for BlackBerry

Via CNet.

May 21 2009

Synchronoss Partners With Xandros For Netbook Broadband Plan

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Synchronoss Technologies Inc. of Bridgewater has stated that it partnered with Xandros for a plan to activate netbooks for mobile broadband service.

Synchronoss Logo

The company is known for its at-home user activation software for iPhones. It is now using the ConvergenceNow Plus platform to manipulate Xandros netbook software solutions. Synchronoss explained that incorporating its software in netbooks already outfitted with Xandros programs will allow users to achieve wireless data access through the cloud with any available broadband carrier.

For now it’s unclear how this will affect netbook plans by Verizon or AT&T, but we’ll have more information as it comes out.

Via NJBiz.

May 16 2009

ZumoDrive Complements Netbook Hard Drives

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Need more space on your netbook hard drive? This complaint has been verbalized by many, and ZumoDrive looks to be the answer to that problem.

ZumoDrive

By adding this virtual drive to your system you can host files in the cloud. What distinguishes ZumoDrive from the many cloud computing tools on the market today is that you can access those files real-time.

ZumoDrive can be thrown in whenever you install a Windows or Mac client, and you just add your files by dragging and dropping. The files can be accessed in any Web browser or PC with the ZumoDrive client installed. There’s an iPhone app as well, and an Android version is on the way.

You can get 1 GB of storage for free, but at $2.99/month you get 10 GB and for $79.99/month, 500 GB.

Via WashingtonPost.

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