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31
Dec

HP woes continue as 5,000 more employees face the axe


It certainly won’t be a happy new year for thousands of HP employees — not when the company has increased its layoff numbers yet again. Hewlett-Packard already adjusted the number of people it needed to let go from 27,000 to 29,000 a year ago, but it’s now added another 5,000 to the total. According to HP’s new SEC 10-K filing, cutting off 34,000 positions will save the ailing firm $4.1 billion per fiscal year. Since the company’s only done removing 24,600 people, it’s bound to let go of 9,000 more until October 2014. The good news (for everyone left anyway) is that CEO Meg Whitman has promised that this will be the last big round of layoffs. HP’s undergone several management changes and restructuring efforts these past few years, though, so here’s hoping Whitman’s words hold true.

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Via: Business Insider

Source: US Securities and Exchange Commission

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31
Dec

App Store Downloads and Revenue Surpasses 50% Growth on Christmas Day 2013 [iOS Blog]


According to a new report from App Store analytics firm Distimo (via The Next Web), Apple’s App Store once again experienced a great spike in interest on Christmas day, with revenue increasing by 56 percent and the number of total downloads rising by 53 percent.

The firm tied the increase in downloads and revenue to interest from Western countries on Christmas day, and also credits developers such as Rovio Entertainment and ZeptoLab strategically releasing their titles just before Christmas to maximize product interest and profit potential.

appstore_christmasday13

Main contributors to this year’s Christmas spike were Western countries. For example: download volume in the United Kingdom increased by 161 percent on Christmas day. In addition, revenues in United States almost doubled with a plus of 97 percent in the Apple App Store. In the large Asian app markets like Japan and Korea this trend was hardly visible.

However, while the figures show strong App Store numbers on Christmas day this year, the report also notes that the percentages in 2013 are lower compared to the past two years. On Christmas day 2011, Distimo stated that there was a threefold growth in download volume compared to an average day in December, which was followed by near double download growth a year later.

Other notable Christmas 2013 findings from the firm include data showing that the increase in paid downloads was greater than that of free downloads, and that the growth of revenue from in-app purchases was less than that of the growth in revenue from apps charging a one-time fee.

    



31
Dec

Recently Opened Dutch Apple Store in Haarlem Hit by Smash-and-Grab Robbers [Mac Blog]


The recently opened Apple Retail Store located in the Netherlandic city of Haarlem was the site of a smash-and-grab robbery last night, reports Dutch news website NU.nl [Google Translate].

People living in the area of the store claimed to hear a loud bang in the middle of the night, which likely represented the sound of a car hitting the front of the Apple Store. The car used to ram the Apple Store was reportedly left behind as the thieves allegedly used two scooters to escape the crime scene.

haarlem_apple_store
Dutch Police are actively investigating the crime scene as the store remains closed to the public, but also states that only a small amount of merchandise was stolen. Employees at the retail location will also not be permitted to identify what was stolen until police complete their analysis of the crime scene.

With Apple gadgets fetching a high price on the secondary market, thefts of individual devices in muggings are common. However, organized robberies on Apple Retail Stores are mostly uncommon.

The Haarlem Apple Store opened on December 7 and is located roughly 20km from Apple’s existing Amsterdam store. The incident also follows another smash-and-grab robbery committed at an Apple Retail Store located in Kurfürstendamm, Berlin in which thieves crashed an Opel Corsa supermini automobile into the store and proceeded to steal display iPhones, iPads, and computers before fleeing in two Audis.

    



31
Dec

Safety Technology to Combat Distracted Driving


Reckless driving has become a pandemic, leaving many people affected and lost lives worldwide injured, maimed and even dead due to drivers who use their phones while driving and are inattentive to the roads. Presently, technology experts have come up with innovative ways to prevent this carnage from growing- even though technology has been the problem it can now be used as the solution. Below are a list of the best application software’s available.

IZup (Eyes- up) Application
The iZup app is available for Android and Windows smartphones. The iZup app begins to work when it recognizes the car speed is over 5 mph, at this point it will block almost all phone usage- making phone calls, launching apps and reading or composing a text message will all be impossible. However, emergency calls are preapproved as well as the use of Google Maps- both necessary actions.

Safety Technology to Combat Distracted DrivingOrigosafe Application

The Origosafe app is currently available for the Samsung Galaxy S3, iPhone 4, 4S and the iPhone 5. Origosafe works using a universal ignition interlock system which needs a driver to insert their phone in a dock before the engine can be started- this system is completely hands-free. The device allows voice calls to be received using the Bluetooth technology, however, if the phone is removed from the dock at any time during the ride an alarm signal will be sent out and will block the current user from using the system until it is reset- this is a form of warning for any errant drivers. This technology has come as good news for parents who are worried about the high rates of teenage car accidents caused by reckless driving. Moreover, it can be tailored to each driver’s specifications.

Cell Control Application
This application software is Bluetooth enabled and syncs with the on-board diagnostic system to detect movement and dispense appropriate action. When the car is moving all mobile devices, tablets and laptops are disabled to remove all temptation a driver faces when on the road. This technology is triggered immediately a driver starts the car.

Fleet Safer Application
Fleet Safer is a software designed for corporate fleets to reduce the accidents caused by illegal and irresponsible use of technology when driving. It is comprised of Safe Dial and Safe app features that ensure one-touch and hands free calls as well as allowing companies to determine which apps can be used by their drivers during a job- this prevents frivolous use of the phone. It also send automated replies to incoming calls and e-mails.

Drivesafe.ly Application
Drivesafe.ly is an application software created by speech and is available for Blackberry, iPhones and Android smartphones. It allows for e-mails and text messages to be read aloud as they are being received in real-time and gives automatic responses. This whole process is hands-free and therefore prevents accidents caused when drivers take their hands off the wheel and their eyes off the road.
The above application software’s have been proven to work and are prime examples of technology used for the bettering of society. Technology can also be used to acquire an online driving license you can also apply directly to the Driving & Vehicle Licence Agency by logging on to their authorised website.

31
Dec

Mars One expedition whittles down its applicant pool to just over 1,000


Apparently, over 200,000 people applied for Mars One’s mission to permanently leave Earth — and while there’s room to spare on the Martian plains, moving that many humans off-planet simply isn’t feasible. The outfit culled that initial pool to 1,058 candidates, and emailed them to say that they’d made it past the first round of (many) cuts for the one-way mission. These remaining astronaut-hopefuls will undergo a battery of team-based training and simulations on Earth to separate the weak links, shrinking the ranks even further. When exactly those trials are going to take place hasn’t been determined yet: Mars One says it needs to sort out its broadcast TV-rights first. After all, inter-planetary travel isn’t cheap.

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Via: The Verge

Source: Mars One

31
Dec

Microsoft’s OneNote Android app updated with native sharing and widgets


Since its major overhaul back in July, Microsoft’s OneNote Android app has languished while the company built out the Windows version of its note-taking tool. That changed today after Microsoft pushed live a new update to the Play Store, which includes new capture, sharing and widget features that Microsoft believes will help you get “more things done in less time.” The updated app now integrates with Android’s built-in sharing intents, allowing you to pull up a native sharing menu inside apps and immediately add new content to your OneNote account. Microsoft’s also added a number of OneNote widgets, embedding options to view your most recent photos, recordings and notes, let you add new content and pin homescreen shortcuts to your favorite pages or notebooks. With its revamped UI, the Android app is almost at feature parity with OneNote for Windows 8.1, giving us a real reason to consider it over rival note-taking apps like Evernote.

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Via: Microsoft OneNote Blog

Source: OneNote for Android

31
Dec

Android 4.4 Comes to the LG G2. Sony Updates More Xperia Devices to Android 4.3. – Device Updates


android 4.4 for lg g2

Time to see if your device is getting a shiny new update. Don’t really have much for this past week, which you can imagine is due to the holidays. The LG G2 is going to see some Android 4.4, but sadly, it is only happening in Korea at the moment. Hopefully it’ll start making the rounds soon.

Device Updates
Android 4.4 for LG G2 in Korea
Sony updates more Xperia devices to Android 4.3
Tegra 7 tablet gets Android 4.3

31
Dec

Galaxy S5 Shows Up in a Crafty Concept Video


galaxys5-conceptvideo

The Galaxy S5 has seen its share of rumors lately, and there have been creative Photoshop artists that have created some pretty renders for the new flagship. Today we get the Galaxy S5 in video form, from a creative man in Russia. It is actually very nicely done, even though they chose Noel as their music, and decided to upload it 5 days after Christmas.

Reach ID is a new spin on the whole fingerprint craze, but not only can you touch the touchpad like you do on the iPhone 5s, you can touch anywhere on the screen and it will register your fingerprint. S-Voice in this concept video sees a HUGE improvement, because let’s fact facts; S-Voice is no ones number one choice for voice assistance. I mean in this video it really listens to your requests, and will perform multiple requests at your disposal.

So check out the video below, and let us know your thoughts about it.

31
Dec

Nintendo put limits on 3DS StreetPass sharing so it can add features later


StreetPass Mii Plaza on a Nintendo 3DS XL

StreetPass data swaps are handy for 3DS owners who want to expand their games with other players’ content, but they limit the number of new people you can accept at any one time. Ever wonder why that is? As it turns out, Nintendo has been futureproofing the service all along. The company’s Kouichi Kawamoto tells Kotaku that the 10-player connection cap in StreetPass Mii Plaza leaves headroom for larger data exchanges. While Kawamoto isn’t saying what additional info gamers could send to each other, he notes that Nintendo will only lift the cap if it decides that there’s nothing more to add. There aren’t any current plans to raise that ceiling, he says. The news will no doubt frustrate players tired of clearing their StreetPass queues, but it does hint at an eventual reward for their patience.

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Source: Kotaku

31
Dec

Just 24 hours left to win a Sony Xperia Tablet Z, QX10 camera and other great prizes in our holiday giveaway!


It’s almost 2014! Round out the year by doing yourself a favor: enter our 11 holiday giveaways by visiting each of our guides here. We’re giving away some of Sony’s best gear, including the Xperia Tablet Z and the QX10 attachable lens camera. You have until 11:59 EST on Decembert 31st to enter our raffles, so get to it!

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