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Samsung confirms the SCloud, denies that it will be actually called the SCloud or launch in September.

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I posted some details on the Samsung’s iCloud competitor, informally called the “SCloud” and we have more information on the service.

According to guys at ZDNet Korea, Samsung Electronics confirmed that it’s working on creating its own cloud computing service. However, the company denied the initial rumor that it’s called the SCloud and that it will launch in September. “We will look at how the closed beta testing is doing, then announce the release date for the service if the beta testing is successful,” the company said.

However, industry insiders stated that Samsung is planning to officially release the service at the end of August. The launch will be only to Korean customers first, although the development team will move to Germany and U.S. to work in building foundations for the SCloud’s international release.

Just as the initial rumor suggested, Samsung will rent Amazon’s servers for the SCloud. However, the company did deny the rumor that they are cooperating together to improve the Amazon’s cloud service platform, stating that the Samsung is only renting Amazon servers and not cooperating software-wise with Amazon.

Everything seems to work according to the Samsung’s plan, at least for the moment. However, will we actually see Samsung deliver the SCloud? We’ll keep you guys more updated on this development as time goes on.

Source: http://www.zdnet.co.kr/news/news_view.asp?artice_id=20110718114738

Picture source: Samsung News

More info/rumor on the SCloud: http://www.phonearena.com/news/Samsung-planning-its-own-Web-Centry-cloud-service-to-be-launched-in-September_id19626

 

 

Written by Geek Park

July 17, 2011 at 9:20 PM

Samsung creating the next Nexus?

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Samsung Romania announced/leaked on Twitter more than a week ago (wonder how nobody noticed it, but that’s a discussion for an another day) that Samsung just started the production of Nexus 3. In a tweet, Samsung Romania stated that the next generation Nexus will launch before the end of 2011 and it will launch with Android 4.0, also known as the Ice Cream Sandwich. Given from rumblings that Samsung was working on the next generation Nexus deemed Nexus Prime (which is a real character in Transformers cartoon), this comes as a no surprise. Although Google tends to rotate manufacturers of Nexuses, those rumblings and tweets do nothing to distill rumors that the next generation of Nexus phones will come from Samsung. Given that Android-powered Galaxy S II has been flying off the shelf and serving as a de facto flagship Android devices in many countries, it almost seems like Google is rewarding Samsung for its great effort.

Of course, there was another rumor that Google is not creating one Nexus phone, but several Nexus phones, each from different manufacturers. So what will actually happen with Nexus is still up in the air. Yet, either way, we can see Samsung hitting this out of this park with a beautiful ‘Super AMOLED HD’ display (which will feature a 4.3-inch, 720p display) and a dual-core, 1.5 Ghz Exynos CPU as well as a LTE connectivity. You really cannot beat Samsung on the spec superiority as we have seen in Galaxy S (beast of a hardware) and Galaxy S II, and with stock Android 4.0 on board, I can’t see how Samsung and Google can go wrong with this.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picture Source: Geekword

Source: http://pocketnow.com/android/samsung-romania-confirms-a-samsung-made-nexus-3

Written by Geek Park

July 11, 2011 at 8:44 PM

Daily Round-Up: Lucky 7! July 7th, 2011.

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7. 7. 7. 7. 7. 7. 7. Pretty good day for me too.

Anyway, off to the round-ups, you lucky people!

The Moment: Major ISPs give users “six strikes” for copyright infringements. It’s an interesting idea, and the move that everybody can really agree to. The idea is simple – Copyright holders will continue to look for copyright infringements on torrent sites and other sites on the Web. Major internet providers will continue to give their customers privacy so ISPs won’t have to supply copyright holders with information on copyright infringements unless the Court requires them to. In a meanwhile, copyright holders will “ping” ISPs with notice if they see users on the network downloading/uploading any copyrighted work without permissions. Users will get First and Second notice as a warning via e-mail that directs them to know more about the copyright issue. Users will get third and fourth notice the same way, except they will be in the more noticeable forms such as pop-up alerts. Fifth and sixth notice will bring “mitigation measures,” which include throttling, forcing violators to visit landing page that tells violators to settle the matter with the ISP and others. This doesn’t stop people from spoofing IP address, or jumping from ISP to another ISP to avoid any trouble with the violation. But if ISP can act in a reasonable way (they can’t cancel your internet service or prevent you from sending e-mails or consulting with doctors online so that’s a start), this can be a better way than suing the heck out of everyone to get money that they will probably never fully get to begin with.

“My Bold, Cold, Bald Picks”: This will increase piracy short-term, but will eventually lead to more reasonable relationships between content consumers and creators. Given that even reaching sixth strike has a light consequence, it’s not hard to imagine people moving more toward piracy since they don’t have to worry about getting sued by MPAAs and record companies. But in a more factual way, people who usually pirates software or contents separate into two groups: Those who actually buy a lot more content than those who don’t and those who are too poor to buy legal contents anyway. For the first group of people, one study revealed that people who pirates download 10 TIMES the amount of music downloaded by people who don’t pirate.  Piracy actually exposes people to more musics and artists, eventually pushing people to legally buy albums and singles of artists that they gave a listen via torrents.  For the second group of people, teens are main factors in piracy. It’s partly because they’re more tech-savvy but mainly because teens usually get a little allowance. A lot of teens have a very fickle musical taste and listen to songs that are “hot,” which changes almost every week. With little allowances that they have, they cannot buy all songs that they want to put on their iPods and iPhones. So what do they resort to? Piracy. Same thing applies to most of the contents that are pirated such as movies and games.

So, two groups of people who pirates are either those who will not buy legal contents, or those who already buy enough legal contents. This means content creators really have a little need to crack down on piracy. While I don’t advocate for the full-on legalization of piracy, relaxing on piracy probably will also cut the consumer backlash MPAAs and RIAAs of organizations get when they sue ordinary people for millions of dollars just because they uploaded couple songs.

Okay… running late here. Off to the links…:

Facebook Vibe seen, music service coming to Facebook? This really makes Facebook look like MySpace now.

Steve Ballmer will deliver CES 12 keynote. Perhaps with the sneak peek of Windows 8? Rumor says that Windows 8 will be  released next April anyway.

Apple loses “appstore” copyright lawsuit against Amazon. Judge declares Apples’ App Store not famous enough, or renowned, or prominent. App Store is not famous enough, and Kim Kardashian is?

Another Moment: Google Maps updated on Android, enables offline map viewing. Here goes TomTom and Garmin. (Maybe Garmin can try Nuvifone 2?)

Swype on iOS. Only if you are jailbroken. There’s a reason to try JailbreakMe.

iAD facing competition as competitors woo companies. Seriously though, million dollar fees to start iADs are way, way too high.

iPad HD coming this year, with Final Cut Pro and Aperture? I don’t know how fingers can do sensitive image editing work? Maybe they will have Mighty Mouse compatible with iPad soon? (iPad in Eee Pad Transformer form would be awesome, actually)

Virgin Mobile’s $ 25 unlimited data/text, 300 minutes plan will have a price hike to $ 35. Still one of best deals you can get if you’re using a smartphone. Especially when a competitive plan for Verizon costs close to $ 130.

App Store hits 15 billion downloads, and $ 2.5 billion given to developers. Android Market just hit 5 billion last week, so there’s your bar right there, Android.

Government arrests 15 people from Anonymous. Five of them are under 18. That’s some hot young IT prospects right there… In a meanwhile, AntiSec is hacking more organizations. This hacking spree just won’t stop!

Sony will include “PSN Pass” in first-party games, which links PSN account with the game CD. This bans people who bought used CDs to play online games, although I’m pretty sure people will find a way.

Investors accuse RIM of using the split of CEO/Chairman as a “stall tactic” to prevent them from suggesting more changes. The company is falling apart on the outside and on the inside.

In brief: Toshiba Thrive in stock for $ 430Verizon already controls 32% of iPhone 4 data usage in the U.S….Xoom may get Android 3.2 which nobody knows what it is (Ice Cream Sandwich should be 4.0)…SpongeBob Twitter Adventure! More cheaper iPhone rumorApple releasing Lion on July 14th?..2Pac Albums on iTunes!

Deals:

Unlocked HD2 for $ 260, EVO 4G for $ 30 at Radio Shack… Fallout New Vegas for $ 10 at Best Buy…Fieldrunners HD for Android free on Amazon…FIFA 11 for $ 24, NCAA Football 12 with $ 20 gift card for $ 57 at Amazon…

4000 XBox Live points along with your Windows Phone for a penny…Samsung Bluetooth handset for $ 4 after $ 20 rebate…Refurbished Sandy Bridge Dell XPS desktop with 8GB of RAM, i7 CPU, and Radeon HD 5770 for $ 649…

 

Happy 7/7 day and good night!

 

 

Oracle looks to grab $ 20 from every Android handsets sold, Android may become the most expensive OS to license.

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According to rumors, Oracle is looking to grab $ 15 – 20 from every Android handsets sold. This comes from the litigation by Oracle, which sued Google last year for violating patents in Android OS.  USPTO found most of Oracle’s complaints invalid, with five of seven patents already declared fully or partly invalid. So, this news comes even at a more surprising time. With 100 million Android handsets already sold and 500,000 new activations every day, money adds up quickly. If the court sides with Oracle in the Oracle-Google case, Oracle can see as much money as $ 10 million from Android handset manufacturers every day. That adds up to $ 3.65 billion every year.

It’s unlikely that Oracle will get that much amount of money. Oracle itself stated that experts see the company winning much as $ 2.6 billion from Google, which was the number Google quickly dismissed. It’s also possible that this lawsuit may drag on for years, just like much of patent lawsuits today are. Given the big stake of this lawsuit, either company will look to appeal to the highest court possible. But this underlines the difficulty of being Android handset manufacturers.

Microsoft also is the big player in grabbing money from manufacturers. The company already signed a deal with HTC that give Microsoft $ 5 for every HTC Android handsets sold (which ironically makes Microsoft more money than licensing fees Microsoft got for Windows Phone 7). Microsoft is also looking to sign a deal with Samsung that will give it $ 15 for every Samsung handsets sold. Rumor is that Samsung declined to pay $ 5 per handset fee so that Microsoft increased the fee, but $ 5 or $ 15, it’s still very significant money for manufacturers whose profit margins are already very thin. Typical smartphone costs around $ 180 to make, but combined with a shipping/retail/development cost, the cost skyrocket, hence the exorbitant money to buy an unlocked cellphones. For instance, typical smartphone manufacturers have a gross income ratio of around 30%, but operating income (which counts employees’ wages/upkeep of retail stores/etc as deficits, which a gross income ratio doesn’t) hovers around 10%.  For instance, HTC sold close to 12 million smartphones at an average price of $ 360 (which went down by $ 30 year-to-year due to manufacturers’ race to create entry-level Android smartphones). With operating income at 15% for HTC, HTC makes $ 55 for every Android handsets that they sell, which adds up close to $ 700 million in operating income. However, in addition to Microsoft payment, if HTC have to pay $ 15 to other manufacturers in patent settlements, the profit will decrease to $ 500 million, more than 25% decrease in the HTC’s profit.

Sure, HTC can survive. Samsung can survive. But they would look toward manufacturing phones for other operating systems if they have to pay more for Android than they have to for other OS. This creates a huge opportunity for Windows Phone 7, which only asks manufacturers to pay $ 15 and gives manufacturers a united, clean, smooth operating system in return, as well as for the WebOS, which is one of the best mobile operating system on the market today.

What this move also does is that it discourages manufacturers specialized in creating budget smartphone from creating Android handsets. As much as ZTE Blades and Optimus Ones were sold, $ 10 ~ 20 licensing fee will make those sub-$ 200 smartphones loss leaders, since manufacturers can only go so far in cutting costs. This significantly undermines Google’s plan of spreading Android into becoming a de facto OS for cellphones just like Windows OS. Google, which makes 90% of money from ad revenue, will be significantly affected by budget users moving away from Android and choosing other operating systems, which may feature different search engines such as Bing, or even go back to feature phones, significantly reducing the reach of Google’s mobile ad service.

Of course, the question is will Google let that happen? Nortel auction, which Google wasn’t even interested in winning, didn’t seem to show that Google was willing to grab patents that may allow it to defend itself against patent lawsuits. Instead of Google, we have seen manufacturers stepping in, with HTC buying S3 Graphics and Samsung counter suing Apple for violation of its patents. But if Google fail to act in any way, it’s hard to see how manufacturers can stand paying $ 10 ~ 20 for every handsets that they sell if they can go to other, better operating system that make you pay less.

Written by Geek Park

July 7, 2011 at 6:30 PM

Remember This?: MySpace!

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MySpace was famous around four years ago. I remember my old middle school friends almost forcing me to join MySpace. They asked me every day “Oh, John. You should get MySpace! It’s like totally cool.” So, I made one. What a mess it was.

Awful... Just awful

I didn’t like keeping a good care of my “homepage,” so I left it pretty much unchanged. But there was still a lot of mess. For instance, when I tried out new apps, MySpace automatically created a section for that specific app. This means plenty of “Truth Box”/”Best Friends” types of apps clogging up my homepage. In fact, the first thing about Facebook that I was impressed with was that it was so clean. All apps were tucked under little categories in the upper left corner. Center space of my window was reserved only for what my friends’ and I said or did. This meant a great deal for me who often writes long, and lot (In fact, that was the main reason I got a blog). On Facebook, people can see my thoughts and opinions clearer than on MySpace, where your activities and statuses competed with music players, annoying wallpapers and apps. I was also able to notice much more of my friends’ activities on Facebook than on MySpace because I got so distracted by shiny, colorful items on MySpace to actually finish reading my “news feed.”

When I actually visited other people’s’ page on MySpace… oh my God. No offense to many but some of them created sites for people with ADHD. Flashy backgrounds, loud heavy metal/hip-hop musics that auto played as soon as the page showed up, and many other elements bothered me so much that I did not even go to others’ pages for years. And it was slow as hell. Partly because of my old computer, but MySpace pages took close to a minute to load fully. MySpace mobile app, which thankfully had a better, cleaner interface that it had become my go-to app for social networking until I joined Facebook, was much faster, and more efficient than the actual desktop site.

When I joined Facebook, I remember being shocked about how fast everything is. My wall loaded up in less than ten seconds. I can go to my friends’ profiles without taking a minute break! Everything on Facebook was amazing.

I was a latecomer to Facebook, but Facebook seemed better than MySpace in every ways. Facebook was a lot faster, cleaner, and deeper. Lot of my friends thought too. Lot of others thought as well. My feed right now (which I had not visited for more than one and a half-year) is basically empty. Occasional posts are posted, but most of them are from Twitter or Facebook (I linked my Twitter for my MySpace about two years ago). Lot of other posts and updates are by bands that I am a “fan” of or by the White House. The last status update that I have seen from my friend was from 20 days ago.

MySpace has been gone through lots of overhauls in recent years, with its logo changes to its decision to allow people to log in from Facebook and Yahoo accounts (which signaled the end of long journey of MySpace, in my opinion), and its design changes. But it has become so unnoticed by the media that the news MySpace got sold for $ 35 million was barely a blip. In fact, for my Moment that day, I had IBM developing an instantaneous memory as my “Moment.” Bigger news of the day was that people can send out Google + invites to other people.

Now, it’s sold to the Simplify Media for $ 35 million, which is about 10 times less than what MySpace was bought for back in 2004 by News Corp. Its user base has been cut by more than a half, from 120 million to 50 million (most of them, like me, who are too lazy to delete their profiles) in the span of 3 years. MySpace’s staff, which at its peak was more than 1,600 employees, will be reduced to less than 100 employees by the end of this year. It seems like MySpace is stepping on the same road that Friendster went through and it’s hard to see how MySpace may bounce back. But just as we cheered for Facebook as an underdog, we do root for an underdog. Oh wait, there’s that thing by Google called Google + that’s better than MySpace and even Facebook in some regard? Never mind. I’m jumping ship to Google+.

P.S. Sad state of MySpace. You know what sites have more traffic than MySpace? YouPorn, CNET, Google Turkey, IMDB, Ask, Tumblr, etc. This was once the site that was the second most popular website in the U.S. back in 2006, even more popular than Google. Just sad.

 

Written by Geek Park

July 6, 2011 at 10:28 PM

Daily Round-Up!: July 6th, 2011

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Long time, no see! Round-up is back! I’ll try to keep round-ups going forever and ever and ever… alone. (Give me a moment as I quiver in the corner and cry)

The Moment: HTC (Sort of) buys S3 Graphics for $ 300 million. The important thing to consider here is that HTC and VIA, which had a joint venture with S3 Graphics, are owned by the same owner. Also, HTC chairperson, Cher Wang, is a major shareholder of S3 Graphics. But as symbolic as this move can get, it’s significant.

Although it’s far from final (the final decision is scheduled to come November), initial ruling from ITC ruled that Apple has been infringing on two of S3 Graphics’ patents. This, itself, can stop the sale of Apple’s iPhones and iPads in the U.S. But this buyout further increases the importance of ITC’s ruling if ITC rules against Apple.

As many know, HTC has been in a lawsuit with Apple for more than a year, with no end in sight. There was an initial complaint filed by Apple, who sued HTC for violating 20 patents such as “unlocking a device by performing gestures on an unlock image” (think “swipe to unlock”). And there was a counter suit filed by HTC, accusing Apple of violating five patents. Administrative judge Carl Charneski will make his decision on those initial lawsuits on the August 5th, which is also the date that Apple requested a hearing for preliminary injunction against Samsung (What a busy day!). While it’s unlikely that those patents from S3 Graphics will factor into lawsuits yet, given that the HTC/S3 merger have to be approved by the Taiwan government, it can create a further ground for more counter suits by HTC. HTC can use those patents to defend against Apple’s lawsuit if the case stretches any longer.

Obviously, what most people and I think is that Apple will eventually sign cross-licensing agreements with every manufacturers that it has sued, so this buyout may even provide a better negotiation table for HTC if Apple drops its lawsuits.

There’s also a matter of HTC paying Microsoft $ 5 for every HTC Android handsets sold, but that’s for an another day… (Have you heard Microsoft is now requesting Samsung to pay $ 15 for every Android handsets they sell? Microsoft is either crazy, or scary)

Now, off to the links…

Another iPhone 5 rumor. Thinner and lighter. Zzzzzzzz. 25 million iPhone 5 may ship this year. Zzzzzzzz. By the way, second and third generation of iPod Touch were 8.4mm thin. Do you think iPhone 5 can be even thinner than that? iPhone 4 is only 9.3mm thin.

Now you can jailbreak your iPad 2 on your Mobile Safari! I’m pretty sure people will do useful stuff with jailbreaking. Like I don’t know, widgets?

iPhone 5 may come to Sprint. At least one analyst says so. I bet I can pay an analyst $ 1000 to say that  iPhone 5 may come to Metro PCS.

iPad 2 Plus, with a better display, may launch this year. Given that “retina” display on tablets are not even on the caliber of “retina” display on smartphones, not to mention much higher graphics processing power required to power a such high-resolution display, I doubt this improve the user experience greatly.

Xoom 1 has been out for four months. Cue the Xoom 2 rumor! Now on FCC!

Droid 3, with its Atrix spec and a 5-row keyboard, may launch with $ 460 unlocked price. Given that Droid 2 sells close for $ 370 unlocked on Amazon, this is a very good deal if the leak is true… In a meanwhile, rounder Droid Bionic!

Speaking of Amazon, those with a paid Cloud Drive subscription will get a “limited time” to get unlimited storage for their music. Given how long it take to even upload 5 GB of music, I don’t know how long it would take to upload 100 GB of my music.

WTO finds that China is violating WTO law because the country put a cap on export of rare metal. I don’t know China follows those kind of rules.

iBooks may push iTunes revenue to $ 13 billion by 2013. Wait, I thought Kindle was still leading.

Lastly… Facebook partners with Skype to bring video chat to Facebook as well. So, no more need for ooVoo or other desktop video chat apps, right? Facebook is definitely trying to bankrupt lot of companies. Oh, also, new group chat features and an updated chat UI. Hopefully video chat comes to mobile Facebook apps as well… But, of course, we have seen all this before. (If anybody has a Google+ invites that they can give out, please contact me)

Deals:

Spotify comes to US. Get your invites… NOW!

Taco Bell.. Free WiFi and in-store TV! Now I can stop go to McDonald for my WiFi fix.

 

Free Power Rangers SMASH app for your iPhone! Evo 3D for $ 113 on WireFly! Droid Incredible 2 for a penny!

 

Wi-Fi Xoom at $ 499…16GB of DDR3 Ram for $ 120! 4GB refurbished MP3 player for $ 25! 

Last day to lock up your unlimited plan for Verizon. Good luck with that (for those on East Coast, too bad!) and Good night!

 

 

Written by Geek Park

July 6, 2011 at 7:50 PM

Droid Bionic launching on August 4th?

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Guys at AndroidCentral got the slide on Verizon’s next big Android launches and they give us a clearer picture of when we can expect those Droid handsets to make an impact. According to the slide, Droid 3 should launch in July 14th, which matches exactly with the general launch date rumored earlier. The previous leak also said that the device will be available on July 7th, a day after the end of unlimited data plans), for those upgrading, so we’ll see whether that sticks as well.

Also, as guys from AndroidCentral said earlier, LG Cosmos II and Samsung Convoy II should be available this August, although there’s no news on new Blackberrys on this slide.

But what is most interesting about the slide is that we finally got a clear date (which can be changed, given Motorola’s history of delaying this handset) on when the Droid Bionic, the handset with LTE and dual-core Tegra 2, a first for LTE phones, will launch. The handset will launch on the August 4th according to the slide, which means people who bought phones from Costco to lock in unlimited data plans can exchange their phones for Bionic, given the Costco’s generous 90-day return/exchange policy. While Tegra 2 falls short in some aspects, it’s head and shoulders above CPUs that the current crop of LTE phones have, which range from Hummingbird seen in last year’s Galaxy S phones to second-generation single-core Snapdragons. So it’s exciting to see the first dual-core, LTE phone hit the market, as dual-core handsets can take more advantage out of lightning fast speed of the LTE network. Now, hopefully the date sticks.

 

 

 

Source: http://www.androidcentral.com/droid-bionic-launching-aug-4-according-leaked-screen

Via: http://9to5google.com/2011/07/04/leaked-screenshot-points-to-august-4th-launch-for-droid-bionic/?utm_source=feedburner

Written by Geek Park

July 4, 2011 at 6:52 PM

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