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Showing posts from September 1, 2013

HTC One X: Sense 5 Quick Review

Quite unexpectedly HTC pushed out an update for the One X (HOX) last week. Bringing Android 4.2.2 and Sense 5 it's made quite a difference to the way the phone operates - and my view of Android.The changes in the latest ROM bring many of the features of the HTC One to the HOX. In use though it's Sense 5 that makes the biggest impression. It's a well thought out interface that leaps ahead of Windows Phone in some respects. In BlinkFeed you have something that closely resembles Microsoft's Modern UI. iOS 6 is left looking prehistoric by comparison.The HOX has always combined a great screen with a design which is fantastic to hold but the most recent Android ICS upgrade introduced a few problems.Firstly battery life was greatly reduced and secondly the HOX could get unbearably hot. Both those issues appear to be fixed.Leaving you to enjoy the very restrained, very slick and quite pretty new version of HTC's new UI. New Android staples like lock screen widgets are also…

Unavoidable or Machiavellian?

There's a bit of a rush to proclaim Stephen Elop's part in the last few years of the Nokia mobile story as that of a Trojan Horse, planted there to drive Nokia's value down and allow Microsoft to snatch the business up on the cheap. That's a bizarre conclusion to reach when you consider the risks that Microsoft have acquired with the business. In fact it's probably safe to say that Nokia's poor financial position drove Microsoft to the purchase rather than the other way around.
Nokia sells better than three in four Windows Phones. Nokia was running out of money. Nokia had significant political and procedural problems. The risk to Microsoft was that Nokia failed and pulled out of the phone business, or worse sold it to a rival. Leaving Microsoft's platform ambitions in tatters.
Actual sales of Lumia handsets are growing nicely, so jumping in to take ownership now makes no other sense, unless you consider the disastrous financials at Nokia as the compelling reas…

Goodbye Nokia, Hello Microsoft

So the inevitable happened and Microsoft has agreed a deal to acquire Nokia's handset business in a €5bn deal. The deal also buys it CEO elect Stephen Elop. Along with 32,000 other staff plus the Lumia and Asha brands.

However it appears that the Nokia brand isn't part of the deal. Microsoft has a four year license to use the name on feature phones but no deal for smartphones.

Now this raises an interesting question. Has Microsoft included a clause which prevents Nokia re-entering the Smartphone market under its own brand? And if so for how long?

The potential for Nokia to come sailing back into the market with an Android or Jolla based device is obvious.

Two other companies who must be affected right now are HTC and BlackBerry. For the latter its best hope for acquisition has been snatched away, whilst the former now faces problems whether it embraces either Android or Windows Phone.

Microsoft has positioned itself to compete directly with Apple. Fire up the popcorn ma…

Now Where Have I Heard That Before

Having Apple enter your primary market must a very worrying development. And with the rumoured iWatch possibly as near as a week away some businesses must be taking a long hard look at themselves and how they can maintain a credible position when it arrives. 
Not Casio though. 
In an interview with the New York Times Casio's chief executive Kazuo Kashio is reported as saying "Suddenly, everyone's discovered the wrist, we've known for a long time it's prime real estate. We're prepared."
Which doesn't strike me as being altogether true. After all if you were readying for the impact of a smart watch, surely it would be by launching a pre-emptive strike of your own?
The smart watch competition is all the more interesting because being a companion to the iPhone (or Android for that matter) means potentially entering a level playing field. There have been enough attempts this far to show that the concept has wings. 
Casio have a lifetime of wrist history behind …