Tag Archives: Palm Pre

Fulton Innovation’s Wireless Charging

Fulton Innovation logoThe great thing about CES is that every now and then an unknown shows off something cool. I’d never heard of Fulton Innovation but they have smart products based around wireless power transmission. Todd learns more about eCoupled from Dave Baarman.

Fulton Innovation have developed an inductive coupling solution that scales from simply making a magazine cover light up as you walk past to being able to charge a whole bag of devices without taking them out of the bag. Electric cars could be recharged by parking in the right spot and not by plugging them in.

Not all of these products are ready for market just yet, but inductive charging efficiencies are on a par with plug-in chargers though economies of scale are needed to bring the prices down to a point where it’s built-in as standard. Palm’s Pre range of smartphones used inductive charging with the Touchstone and the Motorola Droid 4 has inductive charging as an option. As a Pre 3 owner, it’s brilliant not having to fiddle with cables and I hope more devices come to the market with inductive charging in 2012.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central for the TechPodcast Network, and Dave Lee from Waves of Tech.

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HP Buys Palm, Buys Me

The news that Hewlett-Packard has bought Palm has rocked the tech world and has even been covered by some of the mainstream media (BBC).  It’s possibly second only to the next-gen iPhone debacle.  But all of this has been adequately covered elsewhere.

I’m a long-time Palm owner.  I started out with a Palm III, buying it in Heathrow’s duty-free shop out of my first pay packet as a business consultant.  I think that was back in February 1999.  Since then I’ve had a further three PDAs (defecting to Sony Palms for awhile), before getting into smartphones with the Treo 650.  I’m now on the Pre, which I like.

This isn’t meant to be a demonstration of fanboy-ism, but rather a reflection that for over ten years, I’ve probably had a Palm device in my hand almost every single day of the year.  It’s become integrated into my life in a way that no other device, website or even person has. It knows what I’m doing, when I’m doing it and who with.  It knows what I’m reading, what I’m playing, what I’m watching, what I’m listening.  It’s my bank balance, my stocks, my shares, my Christmas wishlist.

It’s me.

So while HP might have been buying Palm, it’s also bought me and thousands of other Palm owners whose devices are a daily part of their lives.  Welcome to the family, HP.

Palm & WebOS 1.4 – We’re Getting There

Late last week Palm pushed out an upgrade to its WebOS operating system for the Palm Pre and Pixi phones, taking them to version 1.4.  In the past few weeks, Palm has taken a fair amount of flak, primarily from analysts but also from users.  Its performance in Europe hasn’t exactly been stellar though it seems to have done well enough in Germany and even the US numbers weren’t as good as expected. 

However, with WebOS 1.4 I feel the phone and the platform is really getting somewhere and Palm is starting to get it right.

First of all 1.4 was pretty much released simultaneously to all phone users.  Previously, there were weeks between the CDMA version coming out and then the GSM version being released.  As a GSM owner, nothing irked more than a new version coming out on CDMA and everyone talking about features you couldn’t yet have.

Secondly, not only are bugs being fixed, but new features are being added.  For example, in addition to video recording, there is now video editing on the phone.  Brilliant for taking videos of the kids,  removing the rubbish parts and forwarding to the grandparents.  I played around with the video recording over the weekend and it’s surprisingly good.

Thirdly, the WebOS is ready for Flash, which is coming Real Soon Now via a download from the AppCatalog.   And by the way, the browser scores 92/100 on the Acid 3 test.

Fourth, the AppCatalog is filling up nicely (albeit there still aren’t paid apps in Europe yet either.  That’s coming RSN too.)  I’ve got to the point where I’m only waiting on two apps to be released before I can leave the legacy PalmOS apps behind and one of these is already available in the US.  The other – DataViz’s Documents To Go – is hotly anticipated by many Pre and Pixi owners.

Fifth, Palm Synergy might be Palm’s unique selling point tying on-line calendars, contacts and email back to the phone and merging them seamlessly, but it’s also encouraged others to think similarly.  For example, RSS readers that sync with Google Reader (Feeds Free), finance apps that link with an online version (ClearCheckBook), info organisation (Evernote),  task tracking (Outline Tracker) and so on.  I love being able to do stuff when I’m out and about on my phone and then have access to exactly the same information when I sit down at my desk.

Finally, multitasking.  WebOS has always had this but the ability to have more than one app open at a time is the only way to go.  Right now, I have Tasks, Feeds Free (an RSS reader), Tweed (a Twitter client),  DrPodder (a podcatcher), Email, Videos and Outline Tracker, all open at once.

For awhile there, I was really kind of “take-it-or-leave-it” about Palm and WebOS.  I’d felt a little let down that the features and programs I’d been used to on my Treo 680 just weren’t there.  With the release of 1.4, I’m feeling better about the Pre and what it can do for me.  We’re getting there.

IDC Predicts Big Change in IT and Telecoms

The analysts over at IDC reckon that 2010 is going to be a year of “recovery and transformation”.  On the recovery side, they’re expecting global IT spending to increase by 3.2%, returning to 2008 levels but a large chunk of this spending is going to occur in the emerging markets of Brazil, Russia, India and China.

But more interestingly, the transformation part is going to be increased adoption of  cloud services and the arrival of “enterprise-grade cloud services” and complementary application platforms.  IDC thinks this will be the most important development for the next 20 years particularly when linked in with the growth in mobile devices.

Regarding mobile, IDC sees these competing with PCs as user’s main devices, with over 1 billion mobile devices, fuelled by increasing adoption of smartphones and Apple’s iPad tablet.  They predict over 300,000 iPhone apps and 5x growth in Android apps.  Interestingly, they also predict “apps stores” for netbooks, which I think has already been evidenced by moves from Intel.

Other predictions include “socialytic” apps which mashup business apps with social networks, further reductions in CO2 through IT solutions and more mergers, acquisitions and partnerships.

Personally, I think the cloud services linked to mobile devices is right on the money.  I’ve recently started using a Palm Pre and it links to several on-line services including Google, Yahoo, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Evernote.  Looking at just Google, there are connections to Mail, Calendar, Contacts, Reader and I’m expecting Tasks, Documents and Notebook to be available before long.  So I’m already living in the cloud and I love it.

The whole press release is over at IDC.

No more Hackintosh Netbook?

Well apparently according to some sources like PCWorld, the newest update of Snow Leopard will kill the Hackintosh. 10.6.2 will not run on the ATOM processor, therefore knocking out all the instruction sets for any netbook running that version. Therefore, you will have to stay in a lower level to keep the machine running.

I really don’t understand why Apple is so Anti-hack. iPhone bricks – Palm Pre doesn’t get iTunes – now the hobbiest is not allowed to play? What’s next: controlled net neutrality? (you think I’m kidding, but I would guess if Apple had it’s way, there would be an iNternet)

We get it, Apple: You had the contracts with UMax and Motorola. Macintosh clones of ten years ago where you pulled those licenses. You even go against Psystar so they don’t profit off your work. But going against the tinkerer? Going against the core Geek?

Remember Apple – you run on an Open Source architecture in FreeBSD. While I’m not saying you should Open the OS, you might find that giving people the option may turn them to Apple products faster. They will flock to something they are used to. What is to stop someone from writing code that could closely mimic the Apple OS? What about someone that just writes code to make an OS that could Rival MacOS? Android, perhaps?

And while I will not cry Antitrust on this, I do have to ask the question: Why would I go with something that is so closed? I am wondering if they should re-review their 1984 commercial where the woman ran down the aisle with a hammer to smash out conformity. Who would have thought the old guy on the screen was Apple itself?

BTW – there is no mention on if these instruction set changes will affect any desktop Hackintosh system. You might just be safe….

…for now…

GNC-2009-10-02 #516 Taking the Show on the Road

Next stop Washington DC and the start of nearly a month of the show on the road. Crazy busy here getting ready to head out and know that time here in Honolulu will be severely limited but I have clients that I have to work with in person.

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Listener Links:
RawVoice.com New Site do you like it?
AP going to go rogue on all of us?
Carbon Buildup?
CNN charging for iPhone App?
Flickr Videos from a Listener
Tweetie wants more Money?

Show Links:
Microsoft Exec Pay Cuts
Feeddemon Version 3.0
Botnets our of Control!
Scoble says Google Waves overhyped.
Gigaom gives Google Wave thumbs up?
25 Million Pitch!
Secret Service likely scare kid big time!
Facebook Rouge Accounts!
Apple to Replace Google Maps?
Sidewiki do you like or hate?
Text and Phone ban for Federal Employees!
Text + Drive + Death + Felony = Jail
Google fanning Spyware Sites!
Fake Twitter Account + Liable = Lawsuit
ICANN cuts US Umbilical Cord!
Docs to go gets Excell!
Windows 7 Compatibility Site.
Recovery.org not Accessible?
NY MTA smells the roses!
No Privacy Patriot Act!
** Amazing Delta 4 Launch Picture!
The Moon like you have never seen it!
Sideways Alarm Clock Ridiculous Price!
Windows 7 Party Pack Unpacked!
Pre-Paid Apps Tomorrow!
Print Picture Photo Frame!
Nissan Anti Crash Robot!
DIY Street View Cam.

GNC-2009-06-19 #487 Back in Honolulu

Back in Hawaii for one show only, then back to the eastern seaboard. Lots to catch you all up on including fun on the runway in Denver. Contest giveaways start next show so get your entries in now so that you have a chance to win.

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Show Comments please call 1-619-342-7365 or e-mail geeknews@gmail.com

Listener Links:
Lake on Mars
Broadband Internet Fairness Act
Tornado Raiders

Show Topic Notes:
iPhone 3G S Stripped
32gb DDR Ram
iPhone Tethering
Sirius / XM iPhone App
Moon Probe High Impact!
Node a cool Power Plug
Don’t point that Laser at me!
In Air Broadband Revenue
Startups are not just for Kids Anymore
Telecom Losses Mount
House Bill to Halt Tiered Internet Caps
Translate Persian to English available via Google.
1.92 Million dollars sheer madness!
500,000 New iPhones to Sell this Weekend!
Yahoo selling domain names!
Google goes after Bing
Digital TV Transition Update.
Sweeden wacky IP laws
Home Computer to Web Server in no time!
Unbelievable Job Disclosure Requirements!
Brain Memories and how they are formed!
AT&T cannot have it both ways!
12 Power out Gadgets
46 Security Patches to iPhone 3.0
Mars Lake (Model Rendition)
The truth about Laptop Battery Life
Come on Univ of Wisconsin get your act together!
Canadian Warrantless Searches
Comcast IPv6 in 2010
Disturbing the Peace through Email
Palm Pre owners warned by Apple