iiNet disappointed with Telstra wholesale ruling | ZDNet


imageThe Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) draft decision to price wholesale ADSL in Australia based on the cost that Telstra has estimated it incurs to offer the service to retailers, has been labelled as disappointing by iiNet.

Wholesale ADSL is generally used by telcos in areas where Telstra’s retail competitors, such as iiNet, Internode, and Optus, don’t have their own digital subscriber line access multiplexer (DSLAM) infrastructure, and are therefore required to wholesale the entire broadband service from Telstra. In these areas, commonly referred to as "off-net" areas, Telstra has been under fire for charging wholesalers more than it charges retail customers through BigPond.

The ACCC yesterday said that it had come to the decision that metro port pricing should come down to AU$24.56 per month, while regional port pricing should drop to AU$29.81 per month, and aggregating virtual circuit cost would rise to AU$36.08 per Mbps.

The watchdog said that it determined the price based on the cost for Telstra to offer the service to other telcos, taking into account the cost of running and maintaining the network. The price uses the same framework to estimate prices for the other declared fixed-line services it offers over its copper network.

iiNet disappointed with Telstra wholesale ruling | ZDNet

PCs learn new tricks, but can tablet/notebook hybrids rescue Windows 8? | ZDNet


imageNo, the PC industry isn’t vanishing anytime soon. But it has reached a level of maturity where year-over-year growth in sales has stalled, and most new purchases are replacements.

Devices that we traditionally think of as PCs – towers, all-in-ones, and clamshell-style laptops with a keyboard and pointing device – are still selling by the hundreds of millions every year. After decades of steady growth, however, those numbers are now declining year over year, as consumers (and to a lesser extent businesses) choose tablets and smartphones as secondary devices instead of buying an additional PC.

The net effect? The overall population of computing devices is expanding tremendously, with the mix shifting toward devices that are more mobile and require less management.

That’s the environment into which Microsoft released Windows 8 last fall. In a world where mobility is king, the single most important feature is the ability to work well as a tablet, when a touchscreen is the only input device. But Microsoft and its partners are betting you want that same device to work as a PC when conventional input devices (and maybe a large monitor) are available.

PCs learn new tricks, but can tablet/notebook hybrids rescue Windows 8? | ZDNet

"Google Glass" and Emerging Optical Technology (Infographic) | The Zenni Blog


“Google Glass” and Emerging Optical Technology (Infographic)

click Image for larger view

"Google Glass" and Emerging Optical Technology (Infographic) | The Zenni Blog

iPhone 4S, Lumia 900, Droid Razr Maxx: Three Great Smartphones You Should Not Buy


imageImagine that you are inside your favorite mobile phone retail store. The air conditioning blows cool on the back of your neck; you tap your foot to the Foster the People tune playing softly on the loudspeaker. In your left hand, you hold the smartphone you’ve been eyeing for months — you know, the one from the TV commercials, with the funny celebrity.

Committed to the purchase, you step up to the register to pay for your new phone. But looking up, instead of an AT&T or Verizon salesperson behind the counter, you see me, in a fancy tuxedo, shouting some truth in your face: "Don’t do it! Don’t buy that smartphone! It’s going to be obsolete in three months!"

Allow me to grab control of the PA:

ATTENTION, SHOPPERS: Three of the most popular, most heavily advertised smartphones on sale right now — the iPhone 4S, Nokia Lumia 900 and the Motorola Droid Razr Maxx — are teetering on technological extinction. In the coming months, we’ll see next-generation releases that will make you wish you had waited to buy, with features that won’t be coming to older models.

iPhone 4S, Lumia 900, Droid Razr Maxx: Three Great Smartphones You Should Not Buy

Which LCD Monitor is Right for You?

LG L194WT-SF LCD monitor

LG L194WT-SF LCD monitor (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Choosing the right LCD monitor can be tough for some people, and it varies for each person, whether they are a gamer, web designer, or simply use their computer for leisure. No matter what your budget, preferences, or needs, the following tips should help you find the right monitor.

Consider Why You Need a New Monitor

There are many different kinds of computer monitors out there, and knowing why you need a new one can help you make a purchasing decision. For example, if you are buying one because yours doesn’t work anymore or you want an updated model, you may want to stick with something similar to the one you already have. If you are looking for an upgrade, examine the features that yours has, and think about what else you would like.

If you don’t already have a monitor and are shopping for your first one, you may not know exactly what you are looking for. In this case, you should do both online research and speak with sales representatives to get a better idea of what will fit your needs.

How Will You Use It

Monitors can be used for many different things, and these activities should be taken into consideration when you shop, as it may sway your decision. Think about what you will be doing on your computer and how much the monitor matters to you. Ask yourself how vibrant and responsive you want it to be and consider other features of LCD monitors.

One of the biggest things that can affect your decision on a monitor is if you are a gamer, as the screen is very important. For example, in this case you will want to look for Dell monitors with LED fields to improve the image and glare. Another example includes if you’re going to use it for your job. If you just want it for play, the top features aren’t going to make much of a difference.

Do You Want Additional Features?

After considering why you need one and what you will use it for, you can narrow your search even more by determining your other needs. List any other features that you would like including screen size, resolution, contrast, plug-in options, and any other important aspects.


Once you’ve determined what you want in your monitor, do your research to compare which makes and models best fit your needs. You can do this by finding product descriptions and reviews online or by talking to various retailers. In addition to seeking out the best LCD monitor, consider which retailers carry your ideal monitor for the best price.

This week at Microsoft: Throwing everybody under the bus


The impression Microsoft is giving this week is almost one of desperation, and of a company willing to do anything to maintain its position at the top of the food chain. First came the surprise showing of the new Microsoft Surface hardware, which looks really nice. Then came a preview of the next big version of Windows Phone that looks compelling. These two previews show that Microsoft is willing to push anybody out of its way.

The Surface tablet announcement caught not only industry watchers by surprise, but also Microsoft’s biggest partners. These companies, HP, Dell, Acer among them, had no real warning that Microsoft was about to compete with them. They are now in direct competition with the company that supplies the OS they use on all of their PCs. The entire PC industry changed with the Surface announcement.

With the Windows Phone 8 preview, MIcrosoft left its partners alone and went after its loyal phone customer base. Buried in the talk of new features, better hardware, and a new start screen, the bombshell was dropped that no existing hardware bought previously or even between now and Windows Phone 8 launch later this year will run Windows Phone 8.

This week at Microsoft: Throwing everybody under the bus

Richard Clarke: China has hacked every major US company | ZDNet


Richard Clarke: China has hacked every major US company

By Emil Protalinski | March 27, 2012, 1:04pm PDT

Summary: Cybersecurity advisor Richard Clarke is warning the U.S. that its major companies are being regularly infiltrated by Chinese hackers employed by the Chinese government to steal R&D.

imageRichard Clarke, a former cybersecurity and cyberterrorism advisor for the White House, was a U.S. government employee for 30 years: between 1973 and 2003. He worked during the times of Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and even George W. Bush. He may not be working under current U.S. president Barack Obama, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have something to warning about. He says state-sanctioned Chinese hackers are stealing R&D from U.S. companies, threatening the long-term competitiveness of America. We’ve heard this before, but the way Clarke puts it makes the situation look even more dire.

“I’m about to say something that people think is an exaggeration, but I think the evidence is pretty strong,” Clarke said during an interview with the Smithsonian. “Every major company in the United States has already been penetrated by China. My greatest fear is that, rather than having a cyber-Pearl Harbor event, we will instead have this death of a thousand cuts. Where we lose our competitiveness by having all of our research and development stolen by the Chinese. And we never really see the single event that makes us do something about it. That it’s always just below our pain threshold. That company after company in the United States spends millions, hundreds of millions, in some cases billions of dollars on R&D and that information goes free to China….After a while you can’t compete.”

Clarke notes that while the U.S. government is involved in espionage against other governments, it doesn’t hack Chinese companies and then hand over intelligence to their American counterparts. He argues that the same cannot be said for the Chinese government.

Richard Clarke: China has hacked every major US company | ZDNet

Apple, Facebook, Path, Twitter, others face class action lawsuit | ZDNet


Apple, Facebook, Path, Twitter, others face class action lawsuit

By Emil Protalinski | March 21, 2012, 10:51am PDT

imageSummary: Apple, Beluga, Burbn, Chillingo, Electronic Arts, Facebook, Foodspotting, Foursquare Labs, Gowalla, Hipster, Instagram, Kik, LinkedIn, Path, Rovio Mobile, Twitter, Yelp, and ZeptoLab UK are being sued.

Last week, 13 individuals targeted 18 mobile app makers accused of automatically uploading user address books without permission with a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in Austin, Texas. The suit, which seeks class action status, has the following defendants: Apple, Beluga, Burbn, Chillingo, Electronic Arts, Facebook, Foodspotting, Foursquare Labs, Gowalla, Hipster, Instagram, Kik Hipster, LinkedIn, Path, Rovio Mobile, Twitter, Yelp, and ZeptoLab UK.

Here’s an excerpt from the lawsuit:

Literally billions of contacts from the address books of tens of millions of unsuspecting wireless mobile device owners have now been accessed and stolen. The surreptitious data uploads—occurring over both cellular networks and open, public wireless access nodes in homes, coffee shops, restaurants, bars, stores and businesses all across the nation—have, quite literally, turned the address book owners’ wireless mobile devices into mobile radio beacons broadcasting and publicly exposing the unsuspecting device owner’s address book data to the world.

Interestingly, even if Facebook’s own apps aren’t doing anything wrong, the company still has to worry about Beluga and Gowalla, both which it acquired last year:

On information and belief, Facebook has acquired the companies that formerly owned the Gowalla App (i.e., Defendant Gowalla Incorporated) and the Beluga App and/or those companies’

Apple, Facebook, Path, Twitter, others face class action lawsuit | ZDNet

New iPad pre-order delivery date slips | ZDNet UK


imageCustomers pre-ordering the new iPad will have to wait up to three weeks to receive the tablet device even though it will be on sale in-store on Friday, according to the company’s website.

The device was announced on Wednesday and is due to go on sale from Apple’s retail stores on Friday 16 March. However, the ordering process on the company’s online store in the UK and US says that pre-ordered iPads will be dispatched in "2-3 weeks".
A spokesman for Apple said that demand for the retina display-equipped device had been "off the charts", forcing it to make the change to the expected delivery dates.
The cheapest Wi-Fi only 16GB model new iPad costs £399, whereas opting for a top of the range, 64GB Wi-Fi + ‘4G’ model will set UK customers back £659.
The lightly refreshed device adds a higher resolution display, quad-core graphics processor, and faster data network capabilities in comparison to the iPad 2. However, it is also slightly heavier and slightly thicker than its predecessor.

New iPad pre-order delivery date slips | ZDNet UK

Meet Apple’s new iPad, now with a Retina Display | ZDNet


Meet Apple’s new iPad, now with a Retina Display

By Rachel King | March 7, 2012, 10:47am PST

imageSummary: Given all of the hype surrounding new Apple products, there are inevitably high expectations for the newest iPad.

Everyone knew it was coming, and here it is: the new iPad.

See also: CNET: Live blogging today’s event
Live Webcast: Let’s talk iPad
New Apple TV announced at iPad event
Apple display spending to double in 2012: report

CEO Tim Cook introduced the newest, 1.4-pound iPad at a special media, invite-only event in San Francisco on Wednesday morning, hailing it as the next step in the “post-PC revolution.”

“In many ways the iPad is reinventing portable computing, and it’s outstripping the wildest of predictions,” Cook told audience-goers, adding that Apple sold 172 million post-PC devices in 2011 alone.

Ever since the unveiling of the iPad 2 last March, rumors have been swirling everywhere as to what the third-generation of the iOS-based tablet would look like. One of the most recent rumors was that the iPad 3 would actually be referred to as the iPad HD.

Yet, it looks like Apple is actually only going to refer to the third-generation as simply “the new iPad” for the time being.

Also as expected, Apple is finally bringing its Retina Display technology (as seen on the iPhone 4 and 4S) to the 9.7 inch screen of the iPad. That includes a 2048 x 1536 resolution with 3.1 million pixels.

Additional hot specs include the A5X quad-core processor, touted as twice as fast and four times better performance than Nvidia’s Tegra 3 chip.

Apple developers also stepped up the camera features and abilities considerably from the iPad 2. For starters, the rear camera is now an iSight camera with 5-megapixel, illuminated sensor with a 5-element lens, face detection and IR filter. Another touch of HD on this tablet is the addition of 1080p HD video recording.

Meet Apple’s new iPad, now with a Retina Display | ZDNet