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July 30, 2014

Yahoo has demanded licensing fees from Facebook

 

117 Yahoo has demanded licensing fees from Facebook

 

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Yahoo has demanded licensing fees from Facebook for use of its technology, the companies said on Monday, potentially engulfing social media in the patent battles and lawsuits raging across much of the tech sector.

Yahoo has asserted claims on patents that include the technical mechanisms in the Facebook’s ads, privacy controls, news feed and messaging service, according to a source briefed on the matter.

Representatives from the two companies met on Monday and the talks involved 10 to 20 of Yahoo’s patents, said the source, who was not aware of what specific dollar demands Yahoo may have made for licenses.

Yahoo did not elaborate in an emailed statement on details of its discussions with Facebook, but indicated it would not flinch at taking the social networking giant to court over its patents.

Yahoo said other companies have already licensed some of the technologies at issue, and that it would act unilaterally if Facebook refused to pay for a patent license.

“Yahoo has a responsibility to its shareholders, employees and other stakeholders to protect its intellectual property,” the company said.

The meeting between the two companies was first reported by the New York Times.

A Facebook spokesman said: “Yahoo contacted us at the same time they called the New York Times and so we haven’t had the opportunity to fully evaluate their claims.”

Should Yahoo wind up suing Facebook, it would mark the first major legal battle among technology giants in the social media sphere and a major escalation of patent litigation that has already swept up the smartphone and tablet sectors and high-tech stalwarts such as Apple Inc, Microsoft Corp and Motorola Mobility.

Yahoo’s patent claims follow Facebook’s announcement of plans for an initial public offering that could value the company at about $100 billion.

Several social networking companies, including Facebook, have seen an uptick in patent claims asserted against them as they move through the IPO process.

However, most of those lawsuits have been filed by patent aggregators that buy up intellectual property to squeeze value from it via licensing deals, and none by a large tech company such as Yahoo.

 

read more on www.yahoo.com

 

Top new smartphones in 2012

 

 

HTC One X

htconex att MoreViews 3311 Top new  smartphones in 2012

 

Amazing Camera. Authentic Sound.

Entertainment at the speed of sound – Our fastest LTE phone yet
Entertainment is delivered quicker and smoother than ever thanks to a super-fast LTE network connection. With this clean, minimalist phone design, you still get a pixel-packed 4.7-inch HD screen. Then there’s the amazing camera that captures every moment with crisp, beautiful photos.

4.7” HD Display
Within seconds of starting a movie download, view it in vivid detail on your 4.7-inch HD display. And with just a swipe of your finger, movies go wirelessly from your phone to a wide-screen TV.

Audio the way the artist intended
Nothing comes between the studio and your audio enjoyment. Thanks to Universal Beats Audio, the listening experience is deep, clear and rich—just like the artist intended.

Capture every moment as it happens
Quickly bypass the lock-screen with instant access and always get the shot with a shutter that never delays. You can even snap a picture while shooting HD video.

Tech specs

Operating System Android 4.0 (ICS) + HTC Sense
Processor 1.5 GHz Dual Core
Qualcomm MSM8960
Memory RAM 1 GB DDR2
Memory
Storage
16 GB onboard storage
Display 4.7″ HD super LCD 1280 x 720
Network LTE CAT3 – DL 100 /UL 50
LTE: 700/AWS
WCDMA: 2100/1900/AWS/850
EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900
Wi-Fi® 802.11 a/b/g/n
Battery 1,800 mAh, Embedded
Camera (Main): 8 MP, f/2.0, BSI,
Single LED-Smart Flash, ImageChip,
1080p HD Video with Stereo Sound
(Front): VGA, with 720p video
Audio Universal Beats Audio
Dimensions 134.8 L x 69.9 W x 9.3 mm

 

 

Samsung Galaxy S III

galaxy s iii bgr 300x168 Top new  smartphones in 2012

Tech specs

  • 1.5GHz quad-core Samsung Exynos processor
  • 4.8-inch “full HD” 1080p resolution with 16:9 aspect ratio display
  • A 2-megapixel front-facing camera and an 8-megapixel rear camera
  • Ceramic case
  • 4G LTE
  • Android 4.0

 

 
 

Nokia 808 PureView

 

38 300x300 Top new  smartphones in 2012

 

Nokia sets a new industry standard with the first in a range of high end experiences based on exclusive Nokia PureView imaging technologies.

Barcelona, Spain – Nokia today ushered in a new era in high-end smartphone imaging with the Nokia 808 PureView.  This is the first smartphone to feature Nokia PureView imaging technologies, bringing together high resolution sensors, exclusive Carl Zeiss optics and Nokia developed algorithms, which will support new high-end imaging experiences for future Nokia products.

The Nokia 808 PureView features a large, high-resolution 41 megapixel sensor with high-performance Carl Zeiss optics and new pixel oversampling technology.  At standard resolutions (2/3, 5 and 8 megapixels) this means the ability to zoom without loss of clarity and capture seven pixels of information, condensing into one pixel for the sharpest images imaginable.  At high-resolution (38 megapixel maximum) it means the ability to capture an image, then zoom, reframe, crop and resize afterwards to expose previously unseen levels of details. With superior low-light performance and the ability to save in compact file sizes for sharing in email, MMS, and on social networks, the Nokia 808 PureView makes it possible for anyone to capture professional looking images in any conditions.In addition to superior still imaging technology, the Nokia 808 PureView, also includes full HD 1080p video recording and playback with 4X lossless zoom and the world’s first use of Nokia Rich Recording.  Rich Recording enables audio recording at CD-like levels of quality, previously only possible with external microphones. The Nokia 808 PureView also features exclusive Dolby Headphone technology, transforming stereo content into a personal surround sound experience over any headphones and Dolby Digital Plus for 5.1 channel surround sound playback.
 
 

                 

“Nokia PureView imaging technology sets a new industry standard by whatever measure you use,” said Jo Harlow, executive vice president of Nokia Smart Devices.  ”People will inevitably focus on the 41 megapixel sensor, but the real quantum leap is how the pixels are used to deliver breath-taking image quality at any resolution and the freedom it provides to choose the story you want to tell.”

 

 

Cheaper Windows smartphone

116 Cheaper Windows smartphone

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Struggling cell phone maker Nokia Corp. has unveiled two new handsets that it hopes will revive its fortunes at the start of the world’s largest mobile phone trade show on Monday.

Chief executive Stephen Elop told reporters at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona that the new phones — a low-price euro189 ($254) smartphone that runs on Windows software and a handset with a high-resolution 41 megapixel camera — demonstrates “the actions necessary to improve the fortunes of Nokia.”

“With great products for consumers, I think the rest will fall into place,” Elop said.

Analysts said the new smartphone could attract users because of its low price but investors sent Nokia shares down more than 5 percent to euro4.10 ($5.50) in afternoon trading in Helsinki, erasing a big boost it gained on Friday in anticipation of new announcements at the trade show.

Nokia has lost its once-dominant position in the global cell phone market, with handsets running on Google’s Android software and iPhones enjoying booming popularity.

The Finnish company is attempting a comeback with smartphones using Microsoft’s Windows software in what Elop has called a “war of ecosystems.”

“We will accelerate our global reach with new mobile devices and services,” Elop said.

Malik Saadi, an analyst at the London-based Informa Telecoms & Media, said the introduction of Nokia’s new Lumia 610 smartphone means the company is “now one step closer to bringing its (Windows Phone 7) to the entry level smartphone segment” and “clearly shows strong dedication” by Nokia to its Windows strategy and smartphones for the non-U.S market.

Nokia launched its new Windows Phone 7 in October, eight months after Elop announced a partnership with Microsoft Corp., in a major strategy shift for the firm. Nokia said it would gradually replace the old Symbian platform used in its smartphones with the Windows operating system.

Neil Mawston, a London-based analysts for Strategy Analytics, said Nokia’s new camera phone is impressive — but that markets were expecting more.

“Technologically it is ‘wow’ but they have integrated it into a Symbian phone which is viewed as, rightly or wrongly, yesterday’s technology, whereas I think there was some expectation that it might be in a Windows phone which is tomorrow’s technology,” Mawston said.

The new phones were introduced less than three weeks after Nokia announced plans to stop assembling cell phones in Europe by the year-end as it shifts production to Asia and to cut another 4,000 jobs — its latest attempts to cushion itself from stiff competition in the smartphone sector. The job cuts follow nearly 10,000 layoffs announced last year.

Once the bellwether of the industry, Nokia has lost its dominant position in the global mobile phone market, with Android phones and iPhones overtaking it in the growing smartphone segment. It’s also been squeezed in the low-end by Asian manufacturers making cheaper phones, such as ZTE.

Nokia became the leading handset maker in 1998 and reached 40 per cent market share in 2008, but the company has gradually lost share since then — falling to below 30 per cent last year.

 

read more on www.yahoo.com

 

Apple Riding High, but for How Long?

 

 

When Ellie Turner decided she wanted an upgrade from her iPhone 3G, she expected to pay more for Apple’s new iPhone 4S than for the other leading smartphones on the market.

Instead, Ms. Turner, a public relations specialist in London, got the fast-selling device free.

She consulted Phones4u, a bulk discounter of cellphones and data packages, which offered her a free iPhone 4S and data plan for £2, or $3.20, more than what she had been paying each month. She returned to her operator, O2 U.K., which had been selling the 4S for £99 with the same plan. She told people there about the rival offer.

“They didn’t blink an eye,” Ms. Turner said. “They matched it.”

Apple, the global market leader in smartphones, is enjoying record profits and sales that have transformed it into one of the world’s most valuable companies. But the mobile computing industry it has conquered in just five years is changing rapidly, and nothing, not even Apple’s vaunted brand premium — the ability to charge more than its competitors for premium smartphones — appears guaranteed.

In Britain, for example, the iPhone 4S costs at least £170 more than the Samsung Galaxy S II with a two-year commitment at O2 U.K. At T-Mobile in Germany, the Samsung model costs about €80, or $108, and the 4S €130. In the United States, the difference between the two models at AT&T is at least $50 and as much as $250.

The premium is Apple’s reward as progenitor of the modern smartphone segment: the sum of its software DNA, intuitive user experience, cash-generating universe of applications, cultivated image of hipness and first-mover advantage.

But Apple’s main rivals — Samsung and other sellers of cellphones using the Google Android operating system, like HTC of Taiwan and Huawei and ZTE of China — are making smartphones for much less, and the iPhone is becoming ubiquitous, threatening to dull its cachet.

For now, said T. Michael Walkley, an analyst at Canaccord Genuity in Minneapolis, the iPhone lineup has momentum and Apple, based in Cupertino, California, should be able to pad its lead over its rivals this year.

“But I cannot say with certainty that five years on, Apple will still be on top,” Mr. Walkley said, noting that Apple and HTC did not even make smartphones six years ago. “I assume they will be, but it is difficult to predict anything in this dynamic market.”

Mr. Walkley estimated that Apple had captured 52 percent of all profits in the smartphone industry during 2011, a share he expected would increase to 60 percent this year.

Apple, following its tradition of participating only in its own promotional events, has no formal presence or exhibition stand at the Mobile World Congress, the industry’s largest annual convention, which begins Monday in Barcelona.

An Apple spokesman in London, Alan Hely, said the company had no comment for this article.

Timothy D. Cook, the Apple chief executive, told a Goldman Sachs investment conference this month that Apple would not rest on its laurels after its record fourth quarter, in which it sold 37 million iPhones — 17 million more than it had ever sold in a quarter.

Tongue in cheek, Mr. Cook called the 37 million “pretty good,” drawing laughs, but then put it in stark perspective: “As I see it, that 37 million for last quarter represented 24 percent of the smartphone market. So three out of four people bought something else. And it represented less than 9 percent of the handset market, so 9 out of 10 people are buying something else.

“The smartphone market last year was a half billion units,” he continued. “In 2015, it is projected to be a billion units. When you take it in the context of these numbers, the truth is, this is a jaw-dropping industry. It has enormous opportunities to it. Up against those, the numbers don’t seem so large anymore.”

Carrying the iPhone has benefited operators, who use it to lure new customers. Sprint, the No. 3 U.S. carrier, sold 1.8 million iPhone 4S’s in the fourth quarter, its first sales of Apple models. In that period, the operator added 1.6 million new customers, the biggest such increase in six years.

Deutsche Telekom, France Télécom and Vodafone have also spoken of the positive effect iPhone sales have on their profits. But over time, the iPhone could be undermined by its own success.

“All of a sudden, every teenage girl has an iPhone,” Mr. Walkley said. “The real danger is that Apple becomes so mainstream that there is a breakaway by consumers to something new.”

Apple’s competitors are waiting for that chance, said Mark Newman, the director of mobile research at Informa Telecoms and Media, a research firm in London.

That puts pressure on Apple to continue innovating with each new iPhone. Mr. Newman said that Siri, the Apple voice-activated command function introduced with the iPhone 4S, had been an incremental improvement, not a paradigm change.

“Apple is focused on defending the high end of the market and that is becoming harder to do each year,” he said. “Competitors, such as the Galaxy from Samsung, are starting to catch up. I think it is inevitable that the margin pressure increases.”

So far, there is no sign of that pressure at Apple, which continues to derive more than 40 percent operating profit from the sale of each smartphone, Mr. Walkley estimated.

In 2011, Apple became the world’s largest buyer of semiconductors, according to Gartner. It displaced LG of Korea as the No. 3 maker of mobile phones by volume, trailing only Nokia and Samsung. Apple narrowed the lead held by Android, the free operating system developed by Google. By December, 44.5 percent of all U.S. smartphone buyers were choosing iPhones, up from just 25.1 percent in October. The proportion choosing for Android fell to 46.9 percent from 61.6 percent, according to Nielsen.

Patrick Rémy, the vice president of devices at France Télécom in Paris, said he saw no sign of the Apple brand’s diminishing. On the contrary, Mr. Rémy said, Apple and Samsung have the financial resources to invest in the marketing, image and innovation that are needed to stay a step ahead of the competition.

“We are not seeing any major part of these brands declining,” Mr. Rémy said.

But competition, especially from lower-priced rivals, is not standing still.

By 2016, more than half of all smartphones sold will cost less than $300, according to Informa. Last year, 81 percent — most of them iPhones — cost more than $300. The proportion costing less than $200, which currently makes up 5 percent of the global market, is expected to increase almost fivefold, to 24 percent, by 2016.

It is unclear what effect a proliferation of low-priced smartphones will have on Apple’s niche. But Shao Yang, the marketing director for mobile devices at Huawei — the Chinese maker of mobile networking equipment which has set a goal of being among the world’s top three cellphone makers by 2015 — said consumers would be able to obtain superior performance for less in the future.

“I think currently the biggest trend is not the price, but the capability,” Mr. Shao said. “There is a competition in capability. The function of the phone will change very fast.”

Huawei, based in Shenzhen, sold 20 million smartphones last year, up from 3.1 million in 2010. Huawei sold about half of its smartphones in China for between $150 and $200. Its biggest foreign market is the United States, where Huawei in January presented the Ascend P1 S, calling it the thinnest smartphone at 6.65 millimeters, or 0.26 inch.

The P1 S will not start selling until April and Huawei has not released the price. But Mr. Shao said it would cost less than an iPhone. “Smartphones are going to become cheaper and cheaper,” he said.

Apple, despite the higher prices of the 4S, is not unrepresented in the low-price smartphone segment. The iPhone 3, a predecessor, is being given away with a £16.50 plan at O2 U.K., while the iPhone 4 is free with a £36 plan.

 

 

Is your App’s Page Optimized for Search Engines?

 

gsmarena 001 300x153 Is your App’s Page Optimized for Search Engines?

 

TechCrunch reported on February 23 that Apple acquired Chomp, a company founded in 2010 to provide a search engine for mobile apps. They started solely with improving iPhone app results, and in 2011 they expanded to the Android market.

Android and iPhone users can download the free Chomp app to search for apps with better results than simply using the respective mobile stores. Apple’s website states that more than 500,000 apps are on the App Store, but finding them is as daunting as finding a needle in a haystack. If you know the app you’re searching for by name, or if it’s a big corporation’s app like Twitter or Facebook, you’ll probably find what you need. But if you’re searching for something like “simulation games” or “fabric stash” or “hidden object”, your results may be murky.

There are blogs that feature popular and underground-sensation apps, but why can’t we just search for them? Google makes it so incredibly easy to find information on anything that we get spoiled. We take it for granted. We wonder why these app markets doesn’t just knowwhat we want.

Chomp’s algorithm reads an app’s specific functions, optimizing the results that users see. Even if the app has an obscure name, Chomp will be able to categorize it for you, to tell you what it’s for. This information is compiled just like Google compiles its index – by crawling. Chomp gives developers the chance to submit an app to their directory, but eventually they’ll get to it on their own. Their website states:

“Chomp’s advanced app crawling technology will automatically find and index your app once it is published to the Android Market, iTunes App Store or the Verizon V CAST Android store. However if you want to help us find it as fast as possible, you can submit your app below. You may also add keywords that describe your app.”

On Chomp’s website, visitors can see analytics for mobile Chomp users, which I personally find pretty awesome. For January 2012, 81% of Chomp searches for iOS apps were for the app’s function; only 19% of searches were for the app’s name. On the Android Chomp searches, only 14% of users searched for an app by name, while the remaining 86% was only searching in terms of function.

And now, with Apple’s acquisition of Chomp, it’s expected that the Chomp team will transform the Apple App Store into something organic, something that can read your mind. So why would an SEO company like Master Google really care? Why all the talk about mobile apps?

If your company has an app, your app’s description page now needs to be optimized for search engines, as Chomp is providing better results than you can see on the iOS or Android app stores.

The implementation of SEO in the app world is long overdue. Hopefully, with Apple’s acquisition of this two-year old search engine app and algorithm superstar, the App Store will step up their results to better serve their customers.

 

 Read more on : www.mastergoogle.com

 

Anonymous targets largest private prison corporations in the US

 

 1 300x200  Anonymous targets largest private prison corporations in the US

 

Hacker group Anonymous on Friday vandalized the website of a major US prison contractor in the latest salvo in an anti-police campaign.

Anonymous subgroup “Antisec” took credit for replacing The Geo Group website home page with a rap song dedicated in part to convicted murderer Mumia Abu-Jamal and a message condemning prisons and policing in the United States.

Mumia Abu-Jamal, whose birth name is Wesley Cook, is a former Black Panther and radio journalist serving a life sentence for the 1981 shooting death of a police officer in Philadelphia.

Activists around the world have rallied in support of the former Death Row inmate, who they contend fell prey to racism in the justice system.

“As part of our ongoing efforts to dismantle the prison industrial complex, we attacked one of the largest private prison corporations in the US – Geo Group,” Anonymous said in a message posted at the Geo Group website.

“We are acting in solidarity with all those who have ever been wrongfully profiled, arrested, brutalized, incarcerated, and have had all dignity and humanity stripped from them as they are cast into the gulags of America.”

The Geo Group manages prisons, mental health facilities, or detention centers in Australia, Britain, South Africa, and North America. The corporation reported $77.5 million in net profit on $1.6 billion in revenue last year.

Anonymous took credit Thursday for an online raid of the Los Angeles Police Canine Association and the posting of personal and potentially embarrassing information.

“Over the past three weeks, we in the cabin have been targeting law enforcement sites across the United States,” hackers said in a message atop a file at Pastebin.com containing officers’ addresses, phone numbers and more.

“Be it for injustices they have allowed through ignorance or naivety, taken part in, or to point out the fact that their insecurity failed to protect the safety of those they took an oath to serve,” the group said of its motives.

The hackers claimed to have gotten the addresses of more than 1,000 officers along with information from police warrants and court summonses as well as about informants in their weeks-long series of attacks on police computers.

Anonymous law enforcement targets in recent weeks have included the websites of the Central Intelligence Agency and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Read more on www.afp.com

 

Pay with any mobile phone anywhere

 

rojters 300x131 Pay with any mobile phone anywhere

(Reuters) – PayPal, the online payments company owned by eBay Inc, just got a new rival in the race to develop a mobile payment service that can be used in physical stores.

Boku Inc, a big online mobile payments company backed by venture capital firms including Andreessen Horowitz and Benchmark Capital, unveiled a new service on Thursday that lets people pay with any mobile phone anywhere credit cards are accepted.

Boku already provides carrier billing through about 230 wireless carriers, including AT&T Inc, Vodafone Group Plc and Verizon Communications Inc in more than 60 countries. This service lets people pay with their mobile number and get the transactions charged to their monthly phone bill.

Carrier billing is typically limited to smaller online purchases, either through personal computers or within mobile phone apps.

Boku’s new platform, called Boku Accounts, allows purchases in physical stores, a much bigger market. The service will be branded and offered by wireless carriers to customers, with Boku running the system in the background.

The move puts Boku in closer competition with PayPal, which is pushing its popular online payments service into physical stores. Google Inc is also trying to get its Google Wallet service into stores through a partnership with giants such as MasterCard Inc and Citigroup Inc.

PayPal’s in-store offering works with merchants’ existing point-of-sale terminals, but usually requires a software upgrade. Google Wallet works with phones that have Near-Field Communication, or NFC, chips in them and merchants need a terminal that supports this technology.

Boku’s service comes with a sticker that users can slap on the back of their mobile phones, turning any handset into an NFC-enabled device. It also comes with a payment card that can be swiped using existing retailer terminals, without a software upgrade, according to the company.

“We wanted this to be available in any store,” Ron Hirson, co-founder of Boku, said. “You don’t need a new phone or a new terminal.”

 

Read more on www.boku.com

 

 

The PlayStation Vita is everything you’d want

  Sony Vita 300x223 The PlayStation Vita is everything youd want

Sony Computer Entertainment America LLC today announced the launch of the highly anticipated PlayStation®Vita (PS Vita), the next generation portable entertainment system, available now in the United States, Canada, and Latin America. PS Vita delivers new ways to play games that have never been seen on any device, coupled with rich social features to keep players connected to their gaming community. With the biggest and best launch lineup in PlayStation® history, PS Vita offers more than 25 titles on day one, plus a broad selection of accessories. PS Vita is also launching today in Europe and Australia.

“Today marks a historic day for the PlayStation brand and our fans,” said Jack Tretton, president and CEO, Sony Computer Entertainment America.  “PlayStation Vita is the most powerful and connected portable gaming system ever created.  For the first time ever, consumers will find compelling PS3™ console-like gameplay experiences on-the-go from the most popular PlayStation franchises as well as titles unique to PS Vita, while staying connected with their favorite entertainment and social networking applications through 3G and Wi-Fi support.”

PS Vita is available at major retailers for $249.99 (MSRP) for the Wi-Fi model and $299.99 (MSRP) for the 3G/Wi-Fi model. Both models will include six Augmented Reality (AR) Play Cards along with a voucher to download three augmented reality games from PlayStation®Network.

AT&T is the exclusive U.S. wireless carrier for PS Vita and customers have the option to activate 3G data plans directly from their PS Vita.  AT&T is offering three data plans, a $14.99 plan featuring 250MB of data, a $30 plan with 3GB and a $50 plan with 5GB.  All three plans will be session-based, and will not require a long term contract, which benefits consumers by providing them with flexibility. The high speeds and broad coverage of AT&T’s mobile broadband network means that PS Vita owners will remain connected to their content and interact with the world around them, including their friends and other PS Vita owners. The 3G/Wi-Fi model allows users to game at the speed of their mobile lifestyle, including asynchronous/turn-based multiplayer gameplay, digital gifting, instantly updated rankings and leaderboards, immediate access to the latest downloadable add-on content*, and real-time access to trophies, friends, web browsing, and apps such as ‘near’.  PS Vita customers with an AT&T data plan will also have free access at more than 29,000 AT&T Wi-Fi hotspots nationwide.

PS Vita introduces new ways to play, delivering new gameplay experiences that have never been offered on any other handheld gaming device. PS Vita features a powerful quad core processor that offers unprecedented levels of performance, enabling deep, immersive games that previously were only possible on home consoles.  Gamers will see amazing visuals and graphics come to life on PS Vita’s vibrant 5-inch high definition OLED touchscreen, while they experience new ways to interact with games using the rear touch pad. PS Vita’s dual analog sticks, a first for any handheld gaming device, provides familiar controls that are ideal for shooters, action/adventure, sports and other game genres. PS Vita also provides unique augmented reality experiences through front and rear cameras that bring the real world into your gaming world, plus a six-axis motion sensing system and built in microphone.

Consumers will have access to music, videos, trophies, photos, web browser and more.  In addition to these features, consumers will have access to several applications exclusive to PS Vita:

  • With Content Manager, PS Vita owners can easily transfer games, videos, music, and photos between your PS Vita and their PS3 or a PC or a Mac.
  • “near” allows PS Vita players to share their location with friends and allow other PS Vita users to see what games they’re playing. Friends can rate games and enable location based gaming features such as gifting in which a user can access virtual game-related items that other users are sharing by checking in at geographic locations.
  • The Party application will enable cross game chat which allows PS Vita users to communicate with up to eight friends through text or voice chat, regardless of what games they’re playing.  They can bookmark their favorite parties to reconnect later with friends and or join existing parties to see what other users are talking about.
  • Remote Play gives consumers the ability to access content stored on their PS3 such as personal photos, music, and videos.  In the future, PS Vita owners can look forward to utilizing the remote play feature as a way to control compatible software game titles as well.
  • With cross-platform gameplay and compatible software titles, players can start a game on their PS3, pause the game, and then resume the game right where they left off using their PS Vita.  Consumers can also join multiplayer games on their PS Vita and play against friends on their PS3 consoles.

In addition to PS Vita exclusive features, PS Vita owners will be able to access popular social networking and communications services via dedicated applications for Facebook, flickr, foursquare, Skype™, and Twitter. These applications will be rolled out within the launch window on PlayStation Network so consumers can stay connected with the world around them.  Immediate access to thousands of movies and television shows are readily available for PS Vita owners through the Netflix application.  Another great feature coming soon to PS Vita is the Music Unlimited digital subscription service where consumers will have the option to listen to hours of their favorite musical artists and create their very own custom playlists.

With its extensive software lineup at launch, PS Vita boasts strong first and third party developer support from day one. In addition to the 25 titles available on day one there are more than 70 games currently in development, ensuring that PS Vita’s vast library will have something to offer for gamers of all ages.  The launch day lineup includes blockbuster franchises such as UNCHARTED™: Golden Abyss, EA SPORTS FIFA Soccer, and Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom®3, plus brand new games such as Escape Plan.

Consumers can now purchase PS Vita game cards at retailers nationwide or download games through the PlayStation®Store.  Pricing for all PS Vita software will range between $9.99-$49.99 (MSRP).

In addition to PS Vita format games, more than 275 PSP (PlayStation®Portable) titles are now available for download on the PlayStation Store. U.S. consumers who already own digital versions of select PSP titles will be able to seamlessly transfer those games to their PS Vita system and enjoy these games with enhanced video quality that’s ideal for the system’s 5-inch high definition OLED screen, along with controls that are optimized for its features such as the dual analog sticks.

With the launch of PS Vita, SCEA will unleash the biggest advertising campaign in PlayStation’s history. PS Vita and the official tag line “Never Stop Playing,” along with the Twitter-influenced hashtag #GAMECHANGER, will be featured with retail partnerships, on wallscapes, billboards, digital banners, and radio and television commercials. In addition, through a partnership with Taco Bell, PlayStation and Taco Bell have given consumers the opportunity to win one PS Vita for every 15 minutes since January 26, 2012, via the “Unlock the Box” campaign.

 

Technical Specifications

  • CPU- ARM Cortex-A9 core (4 core)
  • GPU- SGX543MP4+
  • External Dimensions- Approx. 182.0 x 18.6 x 83.5mm (width x height x depth) (tentative, excludes largest projection)
  • Touch Screen- 5-inches (16:9), 960 x 544, Approx. 16 million colors, OLED Multi touch screen (capacitive type)
  • Rear Touch Pad- Multi-touch pad (capacitive type)
  • Cameras- Front camera, rear camera
  • Game Media/Storage- New Vita-specific dedicated flash-based game medium; dual slots, one for the new game medium, the other is for storage media to be utilized for personal content and download content
  • Sound
    • Built-in stereo speakers
    • Built-in microphone
  • Sensors- Six-axis motion sensing system (three-axis gyroscope, three-axis accelerometer), three-axis electronic compass
  • Location
    • Built-in GPs
    • Wi-Fi location service support
  • Keys / Switches
    • PS button
    • Power button
    • Directional buttons (Up/Down/Right/Left)
    • Action buttons (Triangle, Circle, Cross, Square)
    • Shoulder buttons (Right/Left)
    • Right stick, Left stick
    • START button, SELECT button
    • Volume buttons (+/-)
  • Wireless communications
    • IEEE 802.11b/g/n (n = 1×1) (Wi-Fi) (Infrastructure mode/Ad-hoc mode)
    • Bluetooth 2.1+EDR (A2DP/AVRCP/HSP)

 

Vita Features

  • Multi-touch 5-inch organic light emitting display (OLED) as the front display
  • Multi-touch pad on the rear of the device
  • Dual analog sticks
  • Two digital cameras (front and rear)
  • Software titles on small, Vita-specific flash memory-based cards
  • Three motion sensors, gyroscope, accelerometer and electronic compass
  • Advanced and fast Wi-Fi connectivity
  • Free PlayStation Network access, including trophy support and new Vita features “LiveArea” and “Near”
  • Vita can play PSP titles, minis, PS one classics, video and comics from the PlayStation Store

 

 

Barnes & Noble unveiled a new version of its Nook tablet

 

115 300x200 Barnes & Noble unveiled a new version of its Nook tablet

 

US bookseller Barnes & Noble unveiled a new version of its Nook tablet computer Tuesday, a device with the same $199 price tag as Amazon’s Kindle Fire.

The seven-inch (17.78-centimeter) Nook Tablet also has eight gigabytes of memory like the tablet released by online retail giant Amazon in November.

Apple’s cheapest iPad costs $499. Barnes & Noble released a $249 Nook Tablet with 16 gigabytes of memory in November.

Barnes & Noble also said it was slashing the price of its Nook Color electronic book reader to $169 from the current $199.

The New York-based bookseller also announced its fiscal third-quarter results on Tuesday.

The company said its net profit fell to $52 million in the quarter compared to $60.6 million in the same quarter a year ago. Revenue was up five percent at $2.4 billion in the quarter which ended on January 28.

“Our physical book sales at our stores increased more than four percent over last year,” Barnes & Noble chief executive William Lynch said in a statement.

“Our Nook digital content business continues to grow rapidly,” Lynch added. “According to some of the largest US publishers, we maintained or slightly gained share in the e-book market during the third quarter.”

Barnes & Noble said sales of digital content and Nook tablets and e-readers rose 38 percent during the quarter to $542 million.

 Read more on www.yahoo.com

 

 27 190x300 Barnes & Noble unveiled a new version of its Nook tablet

 

  • Movies, TV shows & music from Netflix, Hulu Plus™, Pandora® & more
  • Lightning fast web-browsing, email & smooth streaming video
  • Over 2.5 million books, magazines, comics & kids’ books
  • Thousands of must-have apps like Angry Birds & Words With Friends
  • World’s most advanced VividView™ 7″ Touchscreen
  • Extra-long battery life — 11.5 hrs of reading or 9 hrs of video
  • 512MB RAM
  • Expandable memory- add up to 32 GB w/ microSD™ card
  • Always free in-store support
*NOOK Tablet – 8GB: 5GB for content, of which 1GB is reserved for NOOK Store content.
 
 
37 300x238 Barnes & Noble unveiled a new version of its Nook tablet

Did Apple unveil OS X 10.8 last week to preempt Windows 8?

 

The timing may be suspicious, but the OS looks more to Google than to Microsoft

mountain lion cjr 13294238081 Did Apple unveil OS X 10.8 last week to preempt Windows 8?

 
“Apple Speeds Mac ‘Mountain Lion’ to Take On Windows 8″ Bloomberg Businessweek

“Steve Jobs is gone, Windows 8 is coming and Apple panics” betanews

As predicted, the tech press spent much of the rest of the week trying to make sense of last Tuesday’s news that the latest version of the Mac operating system, Mountain Lion, is due out before the end of summer.

Most of the speculation had to do with the way Apple (AAPL) handled the announcement, privileging some reporters with previews and not others. (Why MG Siegler, who doesn’t usually write reviews? Why not Andy Ihnatko, who does?)

Many wrote it off as Apple’s way of keeping the press firmly under its thumb. “Access isn’t an entitlement,” Ihnatko tweeted philosophically. “I’ve gotten things early, I’ve not gotten things early. I can only do my job, day to day.”

Some, as the headlines quoted above suggest, smelled something even more Machiavellian in the annoucement — the first time in memory that the press got to test a Mac OS before Apple the Mac development community could. According to betanews’ Robert Johnson:

“Apple more typically announces a new OS version months before it’s made available to anyone, typically during their Worldwide Developer Conference. But with 10.8 things are different. The timing allowed Apple to preempt the release of Windows 8 Consumer Preview, which Microsoft announced in January would be the end of this month.”

Was Mountain Lion announced prematurely to take the wind out of Microsoft’s (MSFT) sails?

The timing is curious. Even if Mountain Lion’s release doesn’t happen until the last day of summer, developers will have less time to prepare for it than for any OS X since Panther in 2003. (See chart.)

But as John Gruber and John Siracusa pointed out in Friday’s The Talk Show podcast, the new features being added to OS X — messaging, notifications, app synching, etc. — are all about integrating the Mac more tightly with iCloud.

Google (GOOG) is the master of cloud-based computing, not Microsoft. So if Apple had any competitor in its sights with last week’s Mountain Lion announcement, it’s Google.

 

Read more on www.cnn.com

 

Everything you know about dieting is wrong

yahoo inc logo1 150x150 Everything you know about dieting is wrong

 

 

 

 

 

Everything you know about dieting is wrong, say US scientists who have devised a new formula for calculating calories and weight loss that they hope will revolutionize the way people tackle obesity.

Obesity rates have doubled worldwide in the past 30 years, coinciding with a growing food surplus, and the ensuing epidemic has sparked a multibillion dollar weight loss industry that has largely failed to curb the problem.

Current standards in the United States, where two thirds of people are overweight or obese, advise people that cutting calories by a certain amount will result in a slow and steady weight loss over time.

But that advice fails to account for how the body changes as it slims down, burning less energy and acquiring a slower metabolism, researchers told the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting in Vancouver.

The result is a plateau effect that ends up discouraging dieters and sending them back into harmful patterns of overeating.

As an example, researcher Kevin Hall offered up his large vanilla latte, purchased at a popular coffee shop. When he asked, the barista told him it contained about 240 calories.

“The notion was if I drank one of these every day and then I replaced it with just black coffee no sugar, then over the course of a year I should lose about 25 pounds, and that should just keep going,” Hall told reporters.

“People have used this sort of rule of thumb to predict how much people should lose for decades now, and it turns out to be completely wrong.”

Hall, a scientist with the US National Institutes of Health, said his work aims to “come up with better rules and better predictions of what is going to happen when an individual changes their diet.”

He and colleagues said their scientific model is aimed to help doctors and policymakers, while a “back-of-the-envelope calculation” for consumers means cutting small amounts of daily calories, but expecting to cut more over time.

“If I want to lose 10 pounds of weight eventually, I have to cut 100 calories per day out of my diet,” Hall explained.

“You’ll get halfway there in about a year, and then you will eventually plateau, (reaching the goal) after about three years,” he added.

“For folks abroad that works out to about 100 kilojoules per day per kilogram. The contrast is the old rule of thumb predicts twice as much weight loss after a year, and it gets worse after that.”

The new model gives dieters one calorie goal for short term weight loss and another for permanent weight loss. Exercise is also calculated in to help set realistic goals.

Tests on small numbers of adults who were fed strictly controlled diets showed the model was accurate, though real-life situations are harder to predict.

Study co-author Carson Chow, also with NIH, said the daily calorie cut needed for weight loss was actually smaller than researchers anticipated.

“It is essentially one cookie different a day, so a 150 calorie cookie leads to a seven kilogram (15 pound) difference in weight. That is huge in my opinion,” Chow said.

Their model was first published in The Lancet in August 2011, and a link is available at http://bwsimulator.niddk.nih.gov.

“People can plug in some information about their initial age, their height, their weight, some estimate of their physical activity level,” Hall said.

Add in a goal weight and the “model will simulate what changes of diet or exercise that person would have to do to achieve that goal weight, and then even more importantly what they need to do permanently maintain that weight loss.”

Since The Lancet article appeared, the notion has not exactly taken the world by storm, in part because it’s not primed for public use, but is mainly aimed at doctors and researchers with adult American patients for now.

Also, if a dieter enters an extreme weight goal, the number of calories the model returns may be much too low to be realistic or healthy, so it needs an expert’s interpretation.

“It’s not particularly user friendly… but it is still relatively informative,” said Hall, who maintains hope that some day his message will be heard.

“There is a lot of inertia behind these old rules of thumb,” he said, adding that he was heartened by an editorial in December in the journal of the American Dietetic Association that commented on the idea of a weight loss plateau and mentioned the new simulator.

“It’s going to take some time to get the public and the professional community aware that there is a new way of doing things, and we actually have some tools that weren’t available before.”

Read more on www.yahoo.com

 

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