Episode 345 – Aussie Tech Heads Shownotes

posted in: Show Notes


HP to bundle Google apps

  • Hewlett-Packard on Tuesday said it is preparing to bundle its small business PCs and printers with Google Apps for Business

  • signals a continuation of a growing rift between HP and one of its key technology partners, Microsoft.

  • The HP SMB IT in a Box offering, scheduled to ship in July, bundles HP’s PCs, printers, management console, administration technology and customer support with Google Apps for Business, which includes Gmail, IM, Calendar, Drive, Docs and other applications.


Will it work? Does Google need to step up a bit with their products to compete with MS


4G network is go for Vodafone

  • Vodafone today announced the launch of its 4G network in Australia

  • It launched its dual-carrier HSPA (“3G+”) network in September and started construction on the 4G network earlier this year.

  • The telco said today its 4G network had demonstrated trial speeds of up to 100 Mpbs.

  • Vodafone’s typical 4G download speeds are between 2 Mpbs and 40 Mbps, according toits website — the same as those offered by Telstra and Optus

  • New customers will be able to join the network from next month, while 4G services are open to existing customers now.

  • The 4G network is open to select metropolitan areas of Sydney, Perth, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, as well as Newcastle and Wollongong.

  • Vodafone will extend the 4G network to 1000 sites by the end of this year.

  • It spent $500 million overhauling its network following the 2010 customer customer exodus.



Apple partners cheer iOS 7 improvements

  • features a new user interface that replaced its bubbly textures and patterned backgrounds with a flatter, cleaner design with lightened color tones. Apple said the new user interface, which also features motion tracking, will make the iPhone’s display look bigger

  • Control Center, which allows users to view all notifications in the Lock screen with a single swipe. The interface also lets users access Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and Airplane Mode settings as well as brightness and volume controls.

  • A big change to iOS 7 involves multitasking; a new API allows developers to enable apps to multitask in the background. Plus, users can access preview screens of apps that are open by tapping the home button twice. And perhaps best of all, iOS 7 will study when users access certain apps so that the OS can have them updated and ready to launch before users click on them.

  • applications from Apple’s App Store will automatically update


New MacBook Air models feature all day battery

  • brand new series of MacBook Air models equipped with Intel Haswell chipsets – and all day battery life

  • the 11in and 13in MacBook Pros can deliver up to 9 and 12 hours of on-the-go use respectively. And standby time is upped to about 30 days.

  • The new models double the base SSD storage to 128GB. These are new drives too, and Apple claims that they’re up to 45 percent faster than the drives they’re replacing

  • The new models don’t feature Retina display screens,

  • The 11in MacBook Air now starts at $1099 and the 13in at $1299. They are available now


Up close with the new Apple Mac Pro

  • If you took a Coke can and scaled every dimension by 250%, that would probably be about right.

  • New thermal core, a triangular air duct that runs through the center of the hardware — with one huge fan mounted at the top.

  • The 2013-era Mac Pro has been totally redesigned with a new, cylindrical chassis and vastly upgraded internals that have been designed to last for “(another) 10 years.

  • 12-core, 256-bit Intel Xeon E5 processor with 1,866MHz DDR3 RAM capable of 60GB/s data transmission.

  • uses PCIe-based flash storage, and so pro users will be relying upon four USB 3.0 and six Lightning 2.0 ports (that can take up to 6 devices per port with 20Gbps throughput) for expandability.

  • HDMI-out 1.4, dual gigabit Ethernet jacks, WiFi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.0 and the usual pair of 3.5mm audio in and out ports.

  • the first Mac that’ll ship with dual AMD FirePro GPUs as standard, which’ll support 4K displays.


Apple can’t resist dissing Google at every turn


the improved Siri uses Microsoft’s Bing rather than the de facto king of “finding things on the Internet”, Google.



Facebook follows Twitter by adding clickable hashtags

Facebook is adding support for hashtags to help its members keep track of popular topics being discussed on the social network,

Adding the “#” sign to a word will turn it into a clickable link which brings up a feed of what other people are saying about the same topic.

Other services that support hashtags include Pinterest, Tumblr, Google+, Sina Weibo, LinkedIn and Instagram



Xbox One: Microsoft defends pre-owned games rules


Microsoft has clarified its position on selling and buying pre-owned titles for its new Xbox One console.

Confusion arose after it appeared the company would impose a fee for playing pre-owned games, a move that was highly unpopular with gamers.

The company has now said in a statement that games can be traded in, but only at “participating retailers”.

There are two requirements: you can only give them to people who have been on your friends list for at least 30 days and each game can only be given once.”

The Xbox One has also come under fire after it emerged it might have to be always online to play games

The company said: “You can game offline for up to 24 hours on your primary console, or one hour if you are logged on to a separate console accessing your library.

“Offline gaming is not possible after these prescribed times until you re-establish a connection, but you can still watch live TV and enjoy Blu-ray and DVD movies.”

Microsoft argued that these policies allow individuals greater access to their games, even if players are not on their own console.

“After signing in and installing, you can play any of your games from any Xbox One because a digital copy of your game is stored on your console and in the cloud.

“So, for example, while you are logged in at your friend’s house, you can play your games.”

Google facial password patent aims to boost Android security


Users could soon be asked to pull a series of faces to unlock their Android phones or tablets.

Google hasfiled a patent suggesting users stick out their tongue or wrinkle their nose in place of a password.




Google spends $1b-plus for Waze




GOOGLE is buying online mapping service Waze in a deal that will keep a potentially valuable tool away from its rivals.


The acquisition announced on Tuesday ends several months of speculation as Waze flirted with potential buyers interested in its rapidly growing service. Waze blends elements of a social network into its maps to produce more precise directions and more reliable information about local traffic conditions.


Google is believed to have trumped two of its fiercest foes, Facebook and Apple , in the bidding for Waze, which is based in Israel but also maintains a Palo Alto, California office near all three of the Silicon Valley giants.


Financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. Published reports citing unnamed people familiar with the negotiations have pegged the purchase price at $US1.1 billion ($1.17 billion) to $US1.3 billion.


That would make Waze the fourth most expensive acquisition among the more than 240 deals that Google has completed in its nearly 15-year history. The only bigger purchases are Motorola Mobility Holdings for $US12.4 billion last year, DoubleClick for $US3.2 billion in 2008 and YouTube for $US1.76 billion in 2006.


Game on between Sony and Microsoft




SONY has broken out the heavy ammunition against Microsoft, announcing its forthcoming PlayStation 4 will cost $549 in Australia – $50 less than the competing Xbox One.


“The gaming landscape is changing with new business models and new ways to play,” said Andrew House, president and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment.


The price announcement wasn’t the only shot fired at Microsoft during Sony’s presentation at the Electronic Entertainment Expo, the gambling industry’s annual US trade show. The loudest applause at the company’s event show came when Jack Tretton, president and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment America, announced that the company would not try to restrict used game sales. Tretton also said the PS4 would not require a persistent online connection.


“PlayStation 4 disc-based games don’t need to be connected online to play or any type of authentication,” said Tretton. “If you enjoy playing single-player games offline, PS4 won’t require to you check in online period and it won’t stop working if you haven’t authenticated in 24 hours.”


Microsoft has been criticised for its vague statements about whether it will allow buyers of its Xbox One to play secondhand software, as well as its requirement that the new console be connected to the Internet at least once every 24 hours.


Beyond those issues, Sony gave potential PS4 buyers plenty of games to look forward to later this year. The company’s Santa Monica Studios, the developer of the “God of War” franchise, introduced the steampunk thriller “The Order: 1866.” Quantic Dream, the French studio behind “Heavy Rain” and the upcoming “Beyond: Two Souls,” provided a comical glimpse at the fantasy “The Dark Sorcerer.”


Shu Yoshida, president of Sony Worldwide Studios, said the company’s studios have more than 30 PS4 games in development, including 12 brand new intellectual properties.

Microsoft allows used games on Xbox One




MICROSOFT’S upcoming Xbox One gaming console will be able to play used games, clearing up a worry among gamers and video game retailers.


That means video game discs that users buy will not be limited to one Xbox One device, and players can share or trade in the games they have bought for other used games, just as they have been able to do in the past.


Microsoft Corp. said in a blog post on Thursday that it will not charge a fee to retailers, publishers or gamers for transferring their old games.


The Xbox One, which goes on sale later this year, will need to be connected online at least once every 24 hours to work. Some players had been concerned that the console was going to require a constant internet connection.


Users will be able to access their games from other consoles through an online library after installing them on their primary device, but they will need to connect to the internet at least every hour.


They will be able to watch live TV and Blu-ray and DVD movies on the Xbox One without an internet connection, Microsoft said.


Microsoft will give more details about the Xbox One next week at the E3 video game conference in Los Angeles.


Shares of Microsoft rose 51 US cents (54 cents) to $US35.47 in late morning trading. GameStop Corp.’s shares rose $US2.40, or 6.9 per cent, to $US37.02. The stock has traded in the 52-week range of $US15.32 and $US39.87.


Google, Cisco to pay TiVo in patent settlement




Cisco Systems and Google will give digital-video-recorder pioneer TiVo lump-sum payments totaling US$490 million as part of a deal that will end the companies’ litigation over patents for set-top technology.


TiVo had been at odds with the two companies, as well as with Time Warner Cable and broadband device maker Arris Group, over the licensing of TiVo’s patents, including patents on its DVR technology. Under the settlement, which the companies agreed to on Thursday, all patent infringement claims will be dismissed.


Cisco will make a lump-sum payment of $294 million to TiVo and pay licensing fees in future years, Cisco said in a filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday. It will receive a perpetual license to the TiVo patents, and the two companies will enter into a limited cross-licensing agreement for video-related patents. Cisco and TiVo also agreed not to sue each other over patents for five years.


Google’s involvement in the case stems from its acquisition of Motorola Mobility, a deal that closed last May. In December, it sold Motorola’s set-top box business to Arris for $2.35 billion. Google was not able to confirm how much it would pay TiVo.


Cisco entered the set-top box business through its acquisition of Scientific Atlanta in 2006. Used as gateways to customers’ homes for service providers, these have become a key part of Cisco’s remaining consumer-focused business.


Cisco estimated the lump-sum payment would reduce its earnings per share by approximately $0.03 in the company’s fiscal fourth quarter, which ends in July. It doesn’t expect the future licensing payments to materially affect its results.


TiVo said Friday that it has won approximately $1.6 billion so far in awards and settlements over its intellectual property.


After TiVo accused Cisco of infringing its patents, Cisco sued the company last year seeking to invalidate the patents. Cisco alleged that TiVo had resisted granting a broad license to its technology, according to news reports at the time.




Leave a Reply