Episode 487 – Aussie Tech Heads Shownotes

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Amazon launches competitor to YouTube

Amazon.com launched a service on Tuesday that allows users to post videos and earn royalties from them, setting up to compete directly with Alphabet’s YouTube.

called Amazon Video Direct, will make the uploaded videos available to rent or own, to view free with ads, or be packaged together and offered as an add-on subscription.


JB Hi-Fi takes top spot on reputation rankings

JB Hi-Fi has reclaimed first place in this year’s Corporate Reputation Index, climbing two places from 2015.

The Corporate Reputation Index is part of a global study conducted each year by Australian research consultancy AMR, in conjunction with the Reputation Institute.

The study measures how Australians feel about each company on products and services, innovation, workplace, citizenship, governance, leadership and financial performance.

Harvey Norman also showed improvement, reaching number 20 – six positions up from 2015’s research results.

Hewlett-Packard and IBM were listed number 10 and 23 respectively. HP climbed four places from 2015 and IBM’s place stayed the same.

Apple climbed two spots to reach number nine. According to AMR, the survey showed that concerns over Apple’s governance and citizenship are still on the rise, which could represent its reputation is still at risk.

Samsung declined one spot and was listed number 3 this year.

On the telco front, Optus climbed 15 spots and is now ranked number 28. Telstra managed to climb four spots and holds number 50. Both positions are considered average or moderate, according to the list.

Although Vodafone has moved up two places, and is now number 55, it is among the companies considered vulnerable. In 2009 it ranked number 24 and was well ahead of Telstra and Optus, according to AMR.

The index was compiled from a survey of adults aged 18-64, with results weighted to ensure they represent appropriate gender and age groups. Data was collected online between 22 February and 21 March 2016.

JB Hi-fi has taken up the vacant retail spots left behind by Dick Smith in Sydney International Airport.

The electronics retailer signed a six-and-a-half year deal with airport retail partner Heinemann Tax and Duty Free to become the exclusive technology partner for the airport.

Read more: http://www.crn.com.au/news/jb-hi-fi-takes-over-dick-smith-airport-outlets-419200#ixzz48PcfAo66


John McAfee named CEO of tech investment house

John McAfee has been appointed as the chief executive of MGT Capital Investments, and said the company would buy certain assets of McAfee’s anti-spy software company D-Vasive Inc.

MGT Capital, in turn, said it would change its name to John McAfee Global Technologies.

John McAfee, an online celebrity who sold his eponymous anti-virus company to Intel for US$7.6 billion, is also a presidential candidate for the November 2016 election as part of his new Cyber Party.


Kogan sells Windows two-in-one for $259

Kogan has revealed Atlas 2-in-1, a new convertible to retail for $259.

Atlas comes with a keyboard and runs Windows 10. When in tablet mode the device switches to the Windows 10 tablet interface.

The Atlas 2-in-1 is powered by Intel Atom x5-Z8300 processor.

With full PC functionality, according to Kogan, the tablet weighs 600g and has a high-definition 10.1-inch touch screen.

It also has a SD card slot, micro USB 2.0, full size USB 3.0 and mini HDMI type C ports. The Pogo Pin on the keyboard allows it to be charged with the tablet.

According to Kogan product manager Russel Proud, one full charge of the Lithium-ion 5800mAH battery is enough for a whole-day use of the product.


Optus finally joins Telstra, Vodafone with voice-over-LTE

Optus has launched voice-over-LTE, following Telstra and Vodafone’s lead last year.

Voice-over-LTE, or VoLTE, is technology that integrates voice calls into the 4G data stream rather than have the network switch down to 3G for such purposes.

“VoLTE provides customers a number of benefits including high definition quality voice calls, faster call connections and the ability for customers to multitask on their device while browsing and making a call over a 4G connection,” said Optus networks managing director Dennis Wong.

The service will be available initially on Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge, with progressive rollout to other devices. Geographically, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth and Canberra metropolitan areas will be the first to benefit.


Microsoft warns free Windows 10 offer expires soon

Any users wanting to download the operating system will have to pay $179 for the home edition of Windows 10 in two months’ time.

Microsoft reminded customers on its blog about the offer expiration, along with news it has surpassed 300 million Windows 10 users since launching last year.

The software giant is preparing to release a Windows 10 anniversary update in the coming months for all Windows 10 users.

New features will include biometric security for Windows apps, more stylus functionality, and Cortana integration for more apps.


Space Invaders and Sonic added to gaming hall of fame

The 1978 space shooter was honoured alongside Sonic the Hedgehog, The Legend of Zelda, The Oregon Trail, Grand Theft Auto III and The Sims.

They join the six inaugural titles from 2015: Doom, Pong, Pac-Man, Super Mario Bros, Tetris and World of Warcraft.

Hall of fame games become permanent exhibits at The Strong museum of play in Rochester, New York.

The winning games were selected from 15 finalists, which included Final Fantasy, Tomb Raider and the original Pokemon games.


EBF

Apple is preparing to abandon music downloads.

Apple is now preparing to completely terminate music download offerings on the iTunes Store, with an aggressive, two-year termination timetable actively being considered and gaining favor.  According to sources to Digital Music News with close and active business relationships with Apple, discussions are now focused “not on if, but when” music downloads should be retired for good.

The sources insisted on confidentiality and required that all conversations be conducted outside of email or any written medium, given the realistic fear of reprisals for sharing details of internal corporate discussions.

Back to the story, the sources indicated that a range of shutdown timetables are being considered by Apple, though one executive noted that “keeping [iTunes music downloads] running forever isn’t really on the table anymore.”  Also under discussion is a plan to “ride the [iTunes music download offering] out for the next 3-4 years, maybe longer,” when paid music downloads are likely to be an afterthought in a streaming-dominated industry.

http://www.digitalmusicnews.com/2016/05/11/apple-terminating-music-downloads-two-years/

Update: Apple rep Tom NeumayrcontactedRecode and said the report that Apple would stop iTunes music downloads in two years is “not true.”

http://www.macrumors.com/

2017 iPhone May Feature Edge-to-Edge Display With Embedded Touch ID Sensor, Front-Facing Camera

Wednesday May 11, 2016 10:21 am PDT byJuli Clover

Rumors suggest Apple’s 2016iPhone 7 will look very similar to theiPhone 6s, with major changes to the iPhone’s form factor actually coming in 2017, the year that marks the 10th anniversary of the device’s initial launch. Apple blogger John Gruber recently shared some tantalizing details about the 2017 iPhone, which may see some radical design tweaks.

In thelatest episode of his podcastThe Talk Show, Gruber said he’s heard “scuttlebutt” suggesting the 2017 iPhone will include an edge-to-edge display that eliminates the top and bottom bezels on the device, with the front-facing camera,Touch ID, and other sensors hidden under the display.

iphoneconceptimage

Concept image viaConceptsiPhone

I think next year’s phone, the 2017 model, the one that will come out in September of 2017. What I have heard — now this is not really from the rumor mill but just scuttlebutt that I’ve heard — is that it will be an all-new form factor.

And there have been some rumors, I guess, but what I’m saying is that I’ve heard this independently and it is completely getting rid of the chin and forehead of the phone. The entire face will be the display. And the Touch ID sensor will be somehow embedded in the display. The front-facing camera will somehow be embedded in the display. The speaker, everything. All the sensors will somehow be behind the display.

What I don’t know… I have no idea, but whether that means that they’re going to shrink the actual thing in your hand to fit the screen sizes we already have, or whether they’re going to grow the screens to fit the devices we’re already used to holding… I don’t know.

Previous rumors have indicated Apple isplanning to introduce a flexible OLED display in the 2017 iPhone, and an OLED display panel would allow for an edge-to-edge screen design. Apple has already signed a deal with Samsung for aportion of the OLED panels it will need for the devices.

Multiple rumorshave suggested one 2017 iPhone could include a 5.8-inch OLED display, which would perhaps mean Apple plans to have the display wrap around the edges of a 5.5-inch device, but it is not clear how such a screen size would work without top and bottom bezels as suggested by Gruber.

Along with an OLED display, the iPhone coming in 2017 isrumored to include a glass shell, like the iPhone 4 and 4s, rather than the aluminum body that’s been used for the iPhone 5s, 6, 6s, 6 Plus, 6s Plus, and SE.Long-range wireless charging and expanded biometric features like iris or facial recognition are also features that have been rumored, along with a10-nanometer A11 chip from TSMC and NAND flash memorysupplied by Samsung.

Apple hasbeen working on developing touch and display driver integration (TTDI) chips since 2015, which would let the Touch ID fingerprint recognition system be embedded directly into the display, allowing for the elimination of the Home button.Analyst rumors have previously suggested the Home button will be removed in the 2017 iPhone, in line with what Gruber has heard.

With Apple planning major design changes for the 2017 iPhone, there have been rumors indicating the devices will not feature an “S” name, with Apple perhaps skipping the iPhone 7s and 7s Plus to move directly to the iPhone 8 or another name.

http://www.macrumors.com/2016/05/11/2017-iphone-edge-to-edge-display/

Apple’s notebook shipments plummet

Apple was clobbered by a huge tumble in notebook shipments last quarter.

The company’s shipments fell 40 percent in the first quarter of 2016 over the final quarter of 2015, market researcher TrendForce said Tuesday. Apple’s plunge was the largest decline among the top eight notebook vendors worldwide. Overall, the top eight sellers saw notebook shipments drop 19 percent in the first quarter to 35.2 million units.

TrendForcepointed to the lack of new MacBooks and Apple’s failure to lower prices of existing MacBooks to boost sales after the holiday-shopping season.

First-quarter results always fall following a surge over the holidays. But the first-quarter shipments also showed a 7.3 percent decline from the same quarter last year.

The PC market has been in a free fall the past several years as more people have opted for big-screen smartphones andtablets over desktops andlaptops. At the same time, more people have hung onto their notebooks longer rather than refreshing them every few years. Microsoft’s launch last summer of its newWindows 10 operating system, usually a catalyst for Windows PC sales, hasn’t contributed much.

notebook-vendors-q1-2016.jpg

 

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