Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

Declaration of Location

One area of technology that holds great interest for me is location based services. It’s got social uses, but also a potential to great applications that will benefit society in many ways (distress signals, disaster management etc.) It’s a hot topic right now and here are more and more applications being announced every day. It’s gaining credability within businesses, yesterday Starbucks announced they were investigating using Foursquare to track regular customers and reward them.

The guys at TheNextWeb have just announced a new channel dedicated to location. They’ve just released their declaration of location which made me smile, but raises interesting points about the balance of benefits with privacy and safety.

[For reference the original text can be found here.]

SHOCK! HORROR! Apple leak information

The Apple Blog (http://theappleblog.com/2010/01/07/former-apple-marketing-chief-confirms-tablet-info-leaks-are-intentional/) have a piece confirming that Apple deliberatly leak information ahead of announcements to boost the hype around a launch.

I’m amazed that this is considered news, this practice has been around for years, favoured individuals will get access to information or devices prior to launch for many reasons. Companies of all sizes need to ensure maximum coverage of new products or services at launch to drive revenue. Although companies the size of Apple have bloggers dedicated to digging out rumours, many resorting to fake renderings ad the like in the absence of real news, it doesn’t do any harm to steer people in the right direction.

Of course there is a flip side to this, nobody who has heard the rumours of the islate (and iPhone 4G) will consider buying one of the current products until they’ve heard the announcement on the 26th January.

The plot thickens

The Internet is awash with the rumour that Steve Ballmer will use the CES Keynote to announce a new tablet PC, based on the Courier prototype seen back last September. The rumours suggest this is being made by HP, certainly no stranger in the Tablet PC playground.

The timing is interesting, just a few weeks before Apples big event at the end of the month. After years of poor (read: non-existant) narketing can Microsoft pull the rabbit from the hat and upset the Apple bandwagon?

It will be interesting to see what is announced!

2010 – The year I’ve waited 5 years for?

I’ve been a passionate user of tablet computers since I acquired a Motion slate PC at university. I found the ability to write notes over PowerPoints and PDFs indispensible. OneNote (Microsofts best keep secret!) was great for organising projects, notes, e-mails etc. It wasn’t the most powerful PC in the world, but the pen interface made up for the shortcomings, besides I had a desktop PC for processor hungry applications!
Sadly for a variety of reasons the technology has remained niche and never been adopted by mainstream users. But is this about to change? The web is alive with predictions about the iPad / iSlate / iDunno / Whatever tablet computer (or e-book reader or iPod on steroids….) that Apple will announce at their event at the end of January.
It’s interesting, as Loren Heiny observed recently, People used to say tablets needed to be more like full PCs. Hence boring convertibles. Now the argument is tablets need to be like iPhones? Which opens up the whole screen size debate. Forecasts are around a 7″ and/or a 10-11″ screen. Whilst an iPhone will slip in any pocket or handbag, a 7″screen will need big pockets and a 10″ a bag. Both screen sizes are too small for “real work” and I supect that the 7″ will be a more popular choice amongst the fanboys.
There are also rumours of a Google tablet being announced at CES, will another OS bring widespread adoption, or confusion?

I don’t know what’s coming, but I hope that the combination of Windows 7 multi-touch devices, Google and Apples gifts to the world may just make 2010 the year of the tablet!