As we approach the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, America's Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) has released the results of a poll of its members on what they expect consumers to buy next year. Tablet computers will apparently be the hot product -- and 46% is a higher rating than I'd have expected -- followed by "streaming content boxes" (20%) and mobile phones (11%).
News and comment on what's happening in the technology industry, and the direction it's heading.
Jack Schofield spent the 1970s editing photography magazines before becoming editor of an early UK computer magazine, Practical Computing. In 1983, he started writing a weekly computer column for the Guardian, and joined the staff to launch the newspaper's weekly computer supplement in 1985. This section launched the Guardian’s first website and, in 2001, its first real blog. When the printed section was dropped after 25 years and a couple of reincarnations, he felt it was a time for a change....
It looks as though a dozen or so American businesses will be giving Google's new attempt at the network computer a serious trial. Taiwan-based DigiTimes reports that Inventec has "already shipped about 60,000 Chrome OS-based netbooks to Google" for the pilot programme announced yesterday (see Google: Chrome OS netbooks coming in mid 2011).
Prepare to dump your powerful Windows notebook or Apple MacBook in the middle of next year. Today, Google announced that PC manufacturers led by Acer and Samsung will start selling diskless Intel Atom-powered netbooks that will have web apps as their native apps.
Many companies are compiling personal data and selling it for marketing purposes, and this trend is likely to increase as people start mining the data that's publicly available via social networking sites. That was the topic of yesterday's post, Profiling means Facebook posts could cost you money.
Today I had a call from LBC's James Max programme following up a Sunday Times article that is, amusingly, behind its paywall. However, you can now get the story from a Daily Mail piece with a five-deck headline: Could your Facebook profile lead to higher insurance premium?
It's never fun writing obituaries, for obvious reasons, but it's also rewarding in that you can do your best to make sure someone gets the credit they deserve. Not that that was really a problem with Sir Maurice Wilkes, who died on Monday at the age of 97.
When I did a round-up of Dell's new consumer products, the Vostro V130 laptop was missing because it was a business laptop and I was under a non-disclosure agreement, which lifted today. I'm not sure why secrecy was a factor since the V130 is basically an upgraded version of the V13 launched a year ago.
Gartner has reduced its estimate for this year's PC sales to 352.4 million units, which represents 14.
It's no secret that most electronics products are now Made in China, but new figures from China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) still have a mind-boggling scale. A table compiled by Taiwan's DigiTimes reveals that in January-October 2010, China made 792 million handsets, 153 million notebook PCs, almost 45 million desktop PCs, 112 million monitors, 95 million colour TV sets, and 75.
Acer held a press conference in New York today to show its dual-screen Iconia laptop PC and three Android tablets.Iconia is unusual in having two touch screens: one acts as a display and the other provides a keyboard or other type of controller, though it can also be used as a display screen.