Friday, August 24, 2012

Apple v. Samsung Verdict: Jury Awards Apple $1.05 Billion in Damages


After weeks spent presenting their respective cases, pages upon pages of mind-numbing examples of intellectual property theft, the episodic mental regression of a judge, and the wildest press coverage ever for a technology story, the verdict is in. The jury of the Apple v. Samsung case has determined that Samsung, based on various patent infringements shown in multiple examples from multiple smartphone models, owes Apple a rounded sum of $1.05 Billion, with the real number being $1,049,343,540- a hefty price to pay for selling products that "look" and "act" like Apple's ubiquitous iPhone.

The decision was determined based on a document given to each juror, which presented painfullyspecific examples and questions based on testimony given from both sides. At the end, the seven man and three woman jury decided that the following devices infringed upon Apple's iPhone: The Captivate, Continuum, Charge, Epic 4G, Exhibit 4G, Fascinate, Galaxy Prevail, Galaxy S 4G, Galaxy S II (on multiple carriers), Galaxy Tab, Galaxy Tab 10.1, Gem, Indulge, Infuse 4G, Intercept 4G, Mesmerize, Nexus S 4G, Replenish, Transform, and the Vibrant. Sounds like a lot of devices? That's because it is.

Apple has scheduled a hearing with the court for the date of September 20th to file for permanent injunctions against Samsung products that are found to be in violation of said patents, with the potential for some of them being blocked from US import. Due to the rather obscure and intimate nature of this story, we will be updating it throughout the next month, as we get closer to the inevitable first big product pull on behalf of Apple.

Source: The Verge

Saturday, August 18, 2012

OnLive Update: Sold Off Due to Layoffs, Service Will Remain

OnLive, the barely three year old service we reported on way back in 2010, will now cease to exist. The company has been bought out amid layouts by what reports claim to be a single owner. You're probably wondering- what the hell caused all of this to happen? Well, the company, quite simply, was unable to afford the expensive servers that existed to support a measly 1800 users. Below is the official statement from the company itself.
We can now confirm that the assets of OnLive, Inc. have been acquired into a newly-formed company and is backed by substantial funding, and which will continue to operate the OnLive Game and Desktop services, as well as support all of OnLive's apps and devices, as well as game, productivity and enterprise partnerships. The new company is hiring a large percentage of OnLive, Inc.'s staff across all departments and plans to continue to hire substantially more people, including additional OnLive employees. All previously announced products and services, including those in the works, will continue and there is no expected interruption of any OnLive services.

We apologize that we were unable to comment on this transaction until it completed, and were limited to reporting on news related to OnLive's businesses. Now that the transaction is complete, we are able to make this statement.

And there you have it, folks. OnLive is gone- at least, the company that once kept it running is. As for the service, the patents and technologies, and other important miscellaneous assets, those are yet to be determined, especially considering the possibility of a lawsuit against Sony's newly acquired Gaikai, who may or may not have stolen service technologies from OnLive. Due to the shock and seriousness of this story, it will remain developing for a while now. Expect more on this in the coming days and weeks.

Sources: Joystiq, Engadget

Friday, August 17, 2012

RUMOR: OnLive Closing Down, All Employees To Be Laid Off

Well, this is awkward...

The latest rumor in the tech world spawning from The Verge's Polygon gaming extension, is that the three year old stream-based gaming outlet OnLive, will be closing down as of today. According to Polygon acquired emails forwarded from the company themseleves as well as the word of Brian Fargo, the announcement will go out today at some time.

"I wanted to send a note that by the end of the day today, OnLive as an entity will no longer exist. Unfortunately, my job and everyone else's was included. A new company will be formed and the management of the company will be in contact with you about the current initiatives in place, including the titles that will remain on the service."

One can't help but wonder if this is related to the recent announcement of Ouya, as well as the poor sales of the product and the service. However, as of now, this story is definitely still developing... stay tuned for more later on.

Source The Verge (Polygon)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

The iPhone 5: What To Expect

 So, in case you've been living under a rock without a Wi-Fi connection or Ethernet port, you'd know that Apple's iPhone 5 is absolutely, positively imminent. But just how soon will it be arriving? Well, if the news clues are correct (see what I did there?), then the iPhone 5/new iPhone is less than a month away from being announced and introduced in a room full of investors and developers. So, what exactly should the world be expecting with the new iPhone?

A bigger screen. Screen sizes today are all up from four inches. In fact, the only screen smaller than that is on budget devices, and, you guessed it- the iPhone 4s. Judging by the slurries of rumors, the new iPhone will include a 4 inch (or larger) display with that good ol' Retina technology that makes Apple so famous.

Unibody design, like every other Apple product right now. Let's be honest here, when it comes to product design, the iPhone has always been somewhat of a lone star device- very rarely following the same design patterns of Apple's simultaneous product offerings. However, if rumors and pictures prove true, the new iPhone will come with a beautiful metallic backing and rim, with only the areas around the camera and the radio (top and bottom) featuring glass. So yes, this will be better for you kids who can't prevent yourselves from dropping your phone. On the street. In New York. Without a case. Because you're cheap.

Smaller Charging Port/Dock Connector. This one has been long awaited and long predicted- the dreaded demise of the clunky, decade old charging port and dock connector that first wielded it's ugly head with the original iPod back in 2001. But for some odd reason, Apple still refuses to get with the times and adopt a USB port like the rest of the world. Can't they just make our lives easier? Nope.

iOS 6. Okay, not gonna lie- this one was sort of obvious. But hey, iOS 6, like every new iOS update, is a big fucking deal. Maps has been gutted, re-done and repackaged, and completely designed from the ground up by Apple, casting away their dependence on Google for good. Siri will be coming with some minor improvements (but who besides the helpless and the people in commercials ACTUALLY use Siri?). Also, like Apple did with Twitter back in 2011 with iOS 5, the latest and greatest will come sporting Facebook integration, which makes it so much easier to share stuff it's ridiculous. But you know, having social media integration takes a long time... and it's not like Android AND webOS have had it for years... Not. At. All.

Bigger, Better, Flashier Everything. Come on kids... it's Apple! Every new rendition of the iPhone (or anything else) is always better. Even when you think they've just about done it all, they do it better the next time. And hey, nobody's complaining! Expect a faster phone with a quad core CPU, more RAM, and better camera's.

So... there you have it. That is the iPhone 5 in a nutshell (unless all the rumors are totally and completely wrong, which means you can blame everybody else but us). It should be a faster, smarter, and better phone than the iPhone 4s ever was... and, as has been mentioned, that's not too surprising. Stay tuned for more updates as they roll out over the next few weeks! There's bound to be more news soon!

eReader Price Updates: Nook Color, Tablet Prices Slashed, Kindle Keyboard Discontinued, and More

In the heat of Google releasing the highly successful Nexus 7 tablet, as well as the abundance of iPad mini/8 inch iPad rumors, it would be strange for neither Amazon nor Barnes & Noble to react. And that's just what they did.

The Nook Color and Nook Tablet will now cost $149 and $179 respectively. Following these price drops, the higher capacity 16GB Nook Tablet will now only be $199. Although the previously $199 8GB Nook Tablet been seen as a logical competitor to Amazon's $199 Kindle Fire, it would be foolish not to opt for the higher end model now available for the same price.

And as tech news always goes, when one domino falls the other proceed- especially in the case of the Kindle line of tablets and eReaders. The beloved Kindle Keyboard (or it's previous name, the Kindle 3) has been discontinued completely, survived by it's younger brothers, the $79 Kindle and the $99+ Kindle Touch. However, the $99 Wi-Fi only Kindle Touch is currently facing a 3-5 shipping delay. And the 3G model? Currently unavailable for purchase.

So what does all of this mean? Well, if you're as speculative as the rest of us, and if you know anything about the tech world and the rumor world, you'd know that both companies are planning to unleash newly breeded hounds of computing fierceness sometime in the next few weeks, with a new Kindle line expected very shortly.

As always, stay tuned for more upcoming updates very soon.

Sources: Amazon Store, B&N Store

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Why 7 Inch Tablets Are SO MUCH BETTER Than 10 Inch Ones

Believe it or not, the modern tablet as we know it today has only been around for two and a half years. Because of this, it's hard to imagine the tablet market already making a major change- yet it has, and it has been since the moment Steve Jobs walked onto a stage at Apple HQ and whipped out the next big application canvas, the iPad. For only five hundred bucks, it did everything a netbook could, and looked damn good at the same time. Considering speculated prices up from a grand, this was a good deal at the time. Back in Holiday Season 2011, Amazon rolled out the Kindle Fire, the first Android-based device to make a cut into Apple's Camelot iPad industry. But after a few months, despite great sales, the device fell behind. Sure, it was cheap, but it wasn't as fast and capable as the iPad. And then, less than two months ago, Google's Chris Yerga presented the company's answer to the iPad and the changing tablet landscape... and the Nexus 7 did it all for only two hundred bucks. No, it's not the iPad. But that's not necessarily a bad thing.