Here’s a summary of the latest digital lifestyle coverage on last100. Note that you can subscribe to the weekly wrapups, either via the special weekly wrapup RSS feed or by email.
I emailed Steve Jobs and got a reply (or why I don’t own an iPad)
The weekend before last I fired off an email to Apple CEO Steve Jobs, and to my surprise, I actually got a reply (OK, I wasn’t that surprised as Steve has been replying to a lot of emails lately).
Review: Palm Pixi Plus – It’s all about webOS and that form-factor
As regular readers will know, I’m a big admirer of Palm’s webOS (see Palm Pre review) and a fan of the BlackBerry-esque portrait QWERTY form-factor as found on Nokia’s E72 – my current primary smartphone. It’s therefore not a stretch to presume that Palm’s second device running webOS, the Palm Pixi (or to be precise, the Palm Pixi Plus, the GSM variant that adds WiFi), would be right up my street with its portrait physical QWERTY keyboard and multi-touch screen. And for the most part it is, with the exception of an underpowered processor and eye-squinting web browser. Read on for my hands-on review. Continue reading »
A periodic roundup of relevant news from our friends at Zatz Not Funny…
Resolving the iPhone 4 Antenna Problem
Dave Zatz: Late last week, Steve Jobs cut his Hawaiian vacation short so that he could respond to iPhone 4 reception concerns with a press conference. The takeaway seems to be that most smartphones suffer degraded network performance when held in specific ways, but the issue is overblown in real world usage.
Hands On with the Samsung Galaxy S
Dave Zatz: Samsung’s making a splash with their new, high-end line of Android ”Galaxy S” handsets. And while they’ve already launched overseas, the US variants with custom enclosures and functionality, start rolling out today. Continue reading »
As regular readers will know, I’m a big admirer of Palm’s webOS (see Palm Pre review) and a fan of the BlackBerry-esque portrait QWERTY form-factor as found on Nokia’s E72 – my current primary smartphone.
It’s therefore not a stretch to presume that Palm’s second device running webOS, the Palm Pixi (or to be precise, the Palm Pixi Plus, the GSM variant that adds WiFi), would be right up my street with its portrait physical QWERTY keyboard and multi-touch screen. And for the most part it is, with the exception of an underpowered processor and eye-squinting web browser. Read on for my hands-on review. Continue reading »
The Norwegian Browser company, Opera, has announced the release of Opera Mini 5.1 for Android phones today.
Opera Mini provides a “lightning fast” browser experience by virtue of its proxy service. Servers over at Opera receive page requests from the Opera Mini browser, and download the page. By reflowing text and compressing images, this allows pages to be downloaded faster than a browser loading the original page. The disadvantage here is a lack of privacy, and indeed the proxy service will break some sites that require a login, and internet banking is a definite no-no for any proxy-based browser.
Opera Mini also provides functionality to synchronise bookmarks with other Opera Mini installations on other phones and with the desktop Opera browser. There are other handy features like “speed dial” which provide quick links to favourite sites. Opera Mini also supports full copy and paste for grabbing and using text from web pages.
Continue reading »
Last time we surveyed the UK’s live and on-demand Internet TV landscape (back in July 07), it was a bare-bones affair. The BBC’s iPlayer was Windows-only and hadn’t yet launched out of private beta, while rival broadcaster offerings were lacking content and, like the iPlayer itself, crippled by DRM and the need to install additional and sometimes conflicting software.
How things have changed.
Today, TV watching Brits are spoilt with choice when it comes to live and on-demand online from the 6 main UK broadcasters, along with a number of aggregators, including the newly launched SeeSaw, the closest yet to the US Hulu.
Read on for our full guide:
1. BBC iPlayer
BBC iPlayer has the most helpfully laid out video on demand site in the UK. However, the newer version of the site (currently on show at http://beta.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/) adds to this with an impressive new design. As ever, there is access to a TV schedule so you can find what was on when, for each channel.
The front page of the site has a small section that displayes featured programmes in each genre. However, clicking the “Show All” button takes you to a full listing for that genre. Down the side category pages are a list of all categories, which when clicked expand to show a list of sub-categories, and how many programmes are in each. Each of these pages have options to list programmes by how recently they were broadcast, or as a full A-Z list. Continue reading »
We were recently given a preview of MeeGo for Internet tablets, but now the Open Source Linux-based OS from Nokia and Intel has been publicly outed running on smartphone hardware.
It’s only a few UI screen shots and a YouTube video of the OS running on some kind of reference device, but it gives us a good idea of how MeeGo is translating to the small screen, and how much of its Nokia Maemo legacy remains.
First impressions are generally good; the UI is pretty in parts, if a little barebones (think: Android) in some areas. The contact/address book isn’t much to look at, for example, while the web browser and webOS-esque task switcher appears much more fully baked. Overall, however, it looks promising.
Video and more screen shots after the jump… Continue reading »
The weekend before last I fired off an email to Apple CEO Steve Jobs, and to my surprise, I actually got a reply (OK, I wasn’t that surprised as Steve has been replying to a lot of emails lately). I then decided to run the story of his reply and my initial email over at TechCrunch Europe as it was a bit of a scoop and I knew it would generate a lot of discussion.
The issue I raised was that of the trend towards touch/gesture and how in general more physically demanding User Interfaces impact accessibility from a personal point-of-view. It wasn’t so much a complaint as my own homage to the desktop/GUI era that Steve and Apple helped usher-in, and how times-are-a-changing once again. Here’s an excerpt from the post: Continue reading »
Another day, another rumor of Nokia’s next-generation Internet tablet.
This time from Digitimes, which pegs the device at 7-9 inches, based on an ARM chip and running the Nokia/Intel MeeGo OS.
Yes, that’s right, not a version of Windows 7, despite Nokia’s increasingly cozy relationship with Microsoft and its track record with the Booklet 3G netbook (see first impressions).
See also: Nokia said to be readying iPad competitor – Windows or MeeGo anyone?
And low and behold, on the same day as the report, MeeGo shows off a multi touch-friendly version of the Linux-based OS, which looks quite promising. Continue reading »
As promised, we’re keeping you up to date with the latest happenings at TVCatchup.
Last week TVCatchup opened a private beta for streaming live TV to Blackberry, Android and Symbian phones. (Update: Palm webOS too.) However, they announced on their official forums today that the beta was going public for anyone to test the service.
To access the mobile streaming version, point your phone’s browser to: m.tvcatchup.com
According to the TVCatchup forums, Vodafone is not supporting their streams, and judging from Twitter, there seems to be mixed results on other mobile networks. Clearly, streaming video data will clog up mobile networks, so we recommend users to stick to WiFi, on which the service works well. Continue reading »