opinion

Manufacturers should stick to Android, despite Google exerting more control

Manufacturers should stick to Android, despite Google exerting more control

Huawei was recently reported to be in the process of developing its own OS as a contingency plan. It isn't unique nor first in that regard. Samsung has long been believed to have invested in Tizen for that very purpose. Both of these independent pieces of news share a common theme, a common goal: being free of total dependence on Google. That concern has recently resurfaced with whispers of Google desiring to exert more and more control over Android. But whether that is true or not, and it is likely to be true, Android hardware makers will be better off remaining with Android, with or without Google.

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What smartwatches are still getting wrong

What smartwatches are still getting wrong

It's been more than three years since the first modern commercial smartwatches, the Pebble and the Sony SmartWatch, hit the market and this wearable device category still hasn't taken the industry by storm. In the meantime, less powerful and less featured smart fitness bands are flooding the market and is giving some well-deserved and long overdue attention to healthier lifestyles (at least hopefully). These two device categories sometimes share some features, like notifications and activity tracking. Sometimes they even share in price tags. And yet smarwatches aren't regarded with the same esteem and market share as their health-centric cousins. The issue might not just be because smartwatches answer the problems wrong. They might also be answering the wrong problems.

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Oculus is shooting itself in the foot with DRM

Oculus is shooting itself in the foot with DRM

When you release the "next big thing" in your particular corner of the market, a company relies on a few things to ensure its success. One key component is making sure that the product delivers on all of its promises. Another is to rely on brand recognition to get people to purchase it. And finally, you have to make sure that you don't manage to upset your user base before they even get your product into their hands. Oculus seems to be struggling pretty hard with that last part, currently.

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It might be too late for a Nokia Android phone

It might be too late for a Nokia Android phone

The Nokia-branded Android smartphone we've demanded since before the company's ill-fated commitment to Windows Phone is finally coming, but it may be too little, too late. News today that Nokia will license its name for the next ten years to a new line of phones and tablets, only running Google's platform rather than Windows 10, seemed initially to be the perfect opener to Google I/O 2016, but it also raises one big question: does anybody still care about a Nokia device?

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You don’t need a $1,000 Chromebook

You don’t need a $1,000 Chromebook

Yesterday, HP announced the Chromebook 13, a laptop that runs Google's basic ChromeOS. Chromebooks have grown in popularity over the last few years because they can be lightweight, feature good battery life, and won't cost you as much as a similar device that runs Windows of OS X. Which makes me wonder why we're seeing Chromebooks that cost over $1,000.

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Galaxy Note 6 won’t be a compelling upgrade at this rate

Galaxy Note 6 won’t be a compelling upgrade at this rate

When you're as popular as Samsung, you really can't escape scrutiny, whether you fail or you succeed. When your earnings are sloping down, all eyes are on whether your next big product can save your coffers. When that flagship turns out to be a superstar, however, they're going to check if the one after it will be able to live up to that new standard. Such is the fate that awaits the Galaxy Note 6, even while it's still a good 5 months away. But if the recent leaks are any indication, it might have a harder time than its predecessor to enamor consumers.

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The PC isn’t dead, we just don’t know what it means anymore

The PC isn’t dead, we just don’t know what it means anymore

Apple has positioned the iPad Pro, both sizes, to be the tablet that replaces your laptop, ruffling the features of both PC and Mac users. Microsoft has also been singing that song, though less harshly, about its Surface Pro tablets. And a good number of tablet, sometimes even smartphone, users have testified how they're able to not only live but even work out of their mobile devices. All of these different tunes seem to have similar chorus: "The PC is dead". That, however, is quite far from the truth, especially considering we might not really know what the word "PC" means anymore, let alone what qualifies as "dead".

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The Internet of Things keeps letting me down

The Internet of Things keeps letting me down

It can be tough sometimes, being an Internet of Things cheerleader. A world of devices that silently talk between themselves should be making my life easier; instead, it's giving me a serious headache.

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When giants falter: Apple, companies abandon standard connectors

When giants falter: Apple, companies abandon standard connectors

Early this week, Apple announced its refresh of the 12-inch MacBook without much fuss nor fanfare. It wasn't really that unexpected, considering the new line simply bumped up the specs a little but offered nothing extraordinarily different. But that silence almost hints at something brewing underneath, a sign that few picked up: the death knell for Thunderbolt. Once one of the apples of Apple's eye, the connector is silently absent from its latest MacBooks. With the rumors of another standard connector to be absent from a future iPhone, we begin to wonder why Apple is suddenly abandoning the very standards it tried to push hard.

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Private MMO servers – A grey area with potential

Private MMO servers – A grey area with potential

Earlier today the news broke that one of the most popular World of Warcraft emulation servers is being taken offline. The reason that it's going dark is due to the threat of legal action from Blizzard against both the team running the server, and the hosting provider that keeps it online. While Blizzard is legally in the right, it does bring up some interesting questions about the way MMOs change over time.

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iPhone SE rekindles the screen size debate : The in-depth analysis

iPhone SE rekindles the screen size debate : The in-depth analysis

Contrary to the popular adage, when it comes to smartphones and even tablets, size does matter. Whether it be about more content or more one-handed manageability, size has been one of the most debated aspects of smartphones in the past years. Recently, it seems that the noise has died down and that the market has decided to go with larger form factors. Even Apple seemed to agree when it launched its first ever phablet. Everyone saw it coming but still the iPhone SE's formal arrival triggered a spark that re-ignited the embers of the debate on whether smartphones of that size still have a room in today's world.

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How sly dog Microsoft is using Fetch! to feed us AI

How sly dog Microsoft is using Fetch! to feed us AI

Are weird apps like Microsoft's Fetch! the definition of Nero fiddling while the PC market burns, or is the Windows-maker cracked the code on consumer artificial intelligence? Fetch!, the latest gimmick from the Microsoft Garage idea incubator, sounds like a fairly pointless idea at first - identifying what breed of dog you show it - but it hides a cutting edge heart.

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