Category Archives: mobile

UK’s CMA Scrutinizes Mobile Ecosystems of Apple and Google



The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced that they have launched a market study into Apple’s and Google’s mobile ecosystems over concerns they have market power which is harming users and other businesses.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is taking a closer look at whether the firms’ effective duopoly over the supply of operating systems (iOS and Android), app stores (App Store and Play Store), and web browsers (Safari and Chrome), could be resulting in consumers losing out across a wide range of areas.

The CMA is describing “mobile ecosystems” as a variety of products, content, and services such as music, TV and video streaming, fitness tracking, shopping and banking. They also include devices such as smart speakers, smart watches, home security, and lighting (which mobiles can connect to and control).

The purpose of the market study appears to be to determine whether the ecosystems of Google and Apple are stifling competition. CMA will also examine the effects of Google’s and Apple’s market power over other businesses, such as app developers, who rely on either Apple or Google to market their products to customers via their phones.

9to5Mac reported that the CMA views Apple and Google’s ecosystems as a “duopoly”. 9to5Mac also pointed out that the CMA’s investigation comes after a preliminary ruling from the European Commission that Apple’s mandated 30% cut of In-App Purchases unfairly diminished competition in music streaming.

Personally, I think it is probably a good idea for the CMA to investigate the Apple and Google “duopoly”. They may find that the situation is not really a problem after all. Or, they could discover reasons to induce changes in how both companies do things. Those changes might turn out to be really good for consumers.


Samsung SDS and Syniverse Simplify Mobile Payments at CES 2020



At CES 2020, Samsung SDS, a global leader in digital transformation and innovation solutions, and Syniverse the world’s most connected company, announced they have signed a memorandum of understanding to develop a wallet-agnostic, mobile payment platform to enable regulatory-compliant, cross-region mobile transactions for mobile operators and enterprises in logistics, financial, travel and hospitality, media and entertainment, and retail markets.

The companies will bring together Samsung SDS’s Nexledger Universal platform and Syniverse’s industry-leading blockchain solution, Universal Commerce, and market-aware Mobile Engagement platform to develop a common platform that will work with any mobile operator and allow any mobile user to send money, loyalty points, or other digital currencies to other mobile users or merchants on a global basis.

Samsung SDS and Syniverse developed the platform using a motto of simplicity that “your phone number has become your easiest payment method.”

Samsung SDS and its Nexledger Universal platform allow enterprises to take control of distributed transactions, securely and conveniently. The platform has been implemented in various fields, such as finance, manufacturing, logistics, and the public sector.

Nexledger Universal offers a flexible application programming interface that can be applied to different blockchains like Ethereum, Hyperledger Fabric and Samsung’s own Nexledger Consensus Algorithm. In addition, Nexledger Universal can interoperate with diverse wallet-device architectures from vanilla Android to the defense-grade Samsung Knox for exceptional security when needed.

Syniverse’s mobile technology products and services provide a secure instant-access platform for seamless, customizable multi-channel messaging and connectivity. The platform connects more than 7 billion devices in 158 countries and annually processes more than $35 billion in transactions for mobile operators and enterprises.

Syniverse’s Universal Commerce blockchain service simplifies, accelerates, and secures multiparty agreements by replacing manual processes with smart contracts, unifying data records, and providing encryption. It reduces the friction of doing business in a revenue-sharing world of large-scale global service and technologies – regardless of industry or connectivity type.


NVIDIA Announced Quadro RTX-Powered Mobile Workstations



NVIDIA announced at the annual Computex conference in Taipei a full range of Turing architecture-based Quadro GPUs for mobile workstations from global system providers such as Dell, HP and Lenovo.

Featuring Quadro RTX 5000, 4000, and 3000 GPUs – the world’s most powerful GPUs – the new mobile workstations are built to deliver desktop-level performance and capabilities in a mobile form factor.

The Quadro RTX mobile workstations ensure that professionals get the best possible experience when working with the latest design, engineering and creative applications from leading software providers such as Autodesk, Adobe, Dassault Systemes, Siemens, PTC, Chaos Group, Ansys, ESRI, Shulmberger, and many more.

They’re made possible by combining RTX-powered real-time photorealistic rendering, AI acceleration, 8K video editing and VR with massive GPU memory – up to 16GB – all packed in sleek and reliable system designs.

The new lineup of mobile workstations also feature Quadro T2000, T1000, P620 and P520 GPUs, giving professionals the flexibility to choose the right system to meet the demands of their diverse workloads.

There is a list of partners on NIVIDA’s website where you can find a laptop that works for you. Prices are not listed on the website, but individual partners might have more information about that.

I can see where the NVIDIA Quadro RTX mobile workstations will be useful and convenient for journalists who need to travel to locations in order to write about events. Bloggers who attend conventions, and must get news out quickly, might also benefit from these mobile workstations.


How to turn off your Kids Cell Phone



Ever asked the question how do I turn off my kid’s cell phone? Well, there is hope as Google has introduced Google Family Link which gives you parents a lot of power in controlling what your kids are doing on their mobile phones. Family link lets you set screen time limits, approve or block apps that can be downloaded from the Google Play store. Or best yet lock and or locate your kids through the device. Nothing better than the ability to exert control over the cell phone usage.

Family link is available starting next week additionally Family link is designed to work with anyone automatic for 13 and below and for those above 13, they have to mutually consent to allow parents monitoring and control of the phone. Teens that think they are slick and decide to opt out after Family Link has been enabled causes the phone to lock for 24 hours.

Parents can use Google Assitant to lock the phone. Have you every yelled you’ve got five minutes to go to bed? Well, Google Assistant will lock the phone five minutes after your initiate the phone lock. Now the kids can be mad at Google as well as you.

Having a third teenager in the home at this time with a cell-phone this added parental control is nice especially when it comes to an unruly kid. I am pretty strict on screen time as it is now and have some basic rules in place on apps and usage. Teenagers will be teenagers though and they will push the boundaries as far as they can like we all did. My dad hung the car keys over my head as an incentive. The modern equivalent is the lock phone command.

Photo by Matheus Ferrero on Unsplash


T-Mobile is Going to Un-Carrier Your TV



T-Mobile US, Inc. president and CEO John Legere unveiled the next phase in the Un-carrier’s mobile video strategy, announcing plans to launch a disruptive new TV service in 2018. He also announced the Un-carrier has signed a definitive agreement to acquire TV technology innovator Layer3 TV, Inc., and will work with Layer3 TV’s leading technology and talent to create T-Mobile’s new TV service.

The Un-carrier will build TV for people who love TV but are tired of multi-year service contracts, confusing sky-high bills, exploding bundles, clunky technologies, outdated UIs, closed systems and lousy customer service of today’s traditional TV providers.

T-Mobile has long been a leader in mobile video – first, giving customers the freedom to stream as much as they want with Binge On and T-Mobile ONE, and then giving T-Mobile ONE families a free Netflix subscription at no extra charge. All of these Un-carrier moves sent shockwaves through the wireless industry, prompting competitors to continue to follow T-Mobile’s lead.

The Un-carrier is shifting its strategy into overdrive by acquiring fellow disruptor Layer3 TV. Currently, Layer3 TV delivers a product that seamlessly integrates the best of television, streaming online video content and social media and is available in five cities across the US.

With Layer3 TV’s leading technology and talented team, T-Mobile plans to launch its own disruptive new TV service next year, tapping into the amazing content available from creators today to disrupt legacy cable and satellite TV’s distribution model. The Un-carrier’s new TV service will take full advantage of T-Mobile’s nationwide retail presence, top-rated brand, and award-winning sales and customer care organizations.

At the heart of T-Mobile’s mobile video strategy is the nation’s fastest LTE network – a network built to handle customers’ growing appetite for mobile video. T-Mobile’s network just continues to expand and improve with new nationwide low-band spectrum and more advanced technologies deployed than any other wireless company. Plus, T-Mobile is out in front again on 5G. The Un-carrier was first to commit to build a nationwide 5G network and has already begin working on that by deploying 5G-ready equipment.


PlayOn Cloud comes to Android



If you aren’t familiar with PlayOn, It is a portal to over 100 streaming websites, allowing you watch multiple shows. And the Cloud acts as a DVR, allowing you to download shows and then watch, even offline.

Now that Cloud capability comes to the Android platform. This includes shows on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Video, Yahoo View, ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, HBO NOW, PBS, The CW, and YouTube.

The company announces “We have officially launched PlayOn Cloud for Android. Now you can record and download any show or movie from top streaming providers like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, HBO and more, with a simple touch of a button on your Android device.

There is more good news. Thanks to new optimizations and processing improvements that are designed to bring down the cost for all of this. The company claims it will now be $0.20 per recording. You’ll have to buy credits from the website.

If you have severed your ties with cable and satellite TV then PlayOn may be something you want to look at. That said, there are plenty of others as well.


Link Mini NAS and Wireless Hotspot from Fasetto at CES



Fasetto are making good on their promises from last year’s CES with the announcement of the Fasetto Link, a palm-sized pocket NAS and communications hotspot. Building on the Fasetto’s cross-platform cloud storage, the Link is a 2″ by 1″ cuboid, packing in a maximum of 2 TB of storage and a range of communication technologies, including WiFi, Bluetooth and LTE. The modular design is powered by a Linux-driven Samsung Exynos 7 Octa 7420 2.1 GHz processor.

The Link is designed for an adventurous life from the start with a water and temperature-resistant shell that should protect the owner’s data from the frozen tundra to the odd cycle in a washing machine. It’s water resistant to 45 ft (IP68) with an expected battery life of 5 hours going full pelt but there’s no detail on operating temperature. There’s an optional battery pack that clips onto the Link for additional time. The Link can be discreetly attached to D-rings and or kept out of sight inside a bag.

Link combines the most powerful commercially-available hardware with an incredibly sleek, but tough, design,” said Coy Christmas, co-founder and CEO, Fasetto. “In Link, we now have a living storage and communications device and platform that lets you stream, store and share all of your digital files through one secure location that can survive almost anything.

In addition to the physical protection, Link has “custom-developed reform security software, user permissions and multiple layers of hardware and software encryption giving users a high degree of security and control over their data.” That’s reassuring given how much data could potentially be stored in in 2 TB.

If you are wondering what you might do with this, imagine that you’ve taken loads of digital photographs but you are in the back end of nowhere. Rather than try to transfer or backup all the high quality digital photos across non-existent LTE, the photos can be stored more quickly on the Link’s storage via wifi, and then made available to other devices in the local area. That’s a fairly tame example as the octacore processor has plenty of power to record extreme sports or stream multiple HD video feeds.

Fasetto Link was named a CES 2017 Innovation Awards Honoree in four categories, including Wireless Handset Accessories, Computer Hardware and Components, Software and Mobile Apps and Computer Accessories.

GNC and CES followers will recall that Luke Malpass from Fasetto was interviewed as part of the coverage last year and Link availability was expected for Q4 2014. This is has been revised to Spring 2017. Prices start at US$349 for a 256 GB version up to US$1,149 for the 2 TB version. More details at Link’s shop where pre-orders can be placed.

If you are attending CES, pop in to see Link in action at the Las Vegas Convention Center, Central Hall, stand 16734 from 5-7 January 2017.