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TMCNet:  Boot up: Dotcom the rat?, Xiaomi's 30m, Gates's forecast, and more

[December 24, 2013]

Boot up: Dotcom the rat?, Xiaomi's 30m, Gates's forecast, and more

(Guardian Web Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) A burst of 8 links for you to chew over, as picked by the Technology team Kim Dotcom ratted out rival file-sharing sites, court documents claim >> Wired.com Three months before federal authorities shuttered Megaupload and indicted its top seven executives, the file-sharing site's founder, Kim Dotcom, urged PayPal not to do business with rival sites because of their "criminal activity," according to a 200-page document Virginia federal prosecutors unveiled today.


If true, the revelation, one of countless the authorities noted in their filing (PDF), adds a touch of irony to a long-stalled criminal prosecution of what US authorities have said is "among the largest criminal copyright cases ever brought by the United States." Xiaomi's global MIUI users exceed 30m >> Marbridge Consulting Beijing-based Android handset developer Xiaomi announced today that global users of the company's Android-based MIUI operating system have exceeded 30 mln. Combined monthly revenue from Xiaomi's MIUI app store, mobile theme store, and other related stores has passed RMB 30 mln.

Hong Feng, co-founder and VP of Xiaomi, has stated that MIUI users grew from 20 mln to 30 mln in just the past five months. According to Hong, MIUI currently supports 23 languages and is compatible with nearly 200 handset models. The MIUI ecosystem includes a handset theme store, app store, game center, browser, Duokan Reader, online video, music, and Xiaomi hardware store.

In a few months, Xiaomi will probably have more users than BlackBerry.

August 2010: Gartner says Android to become No.2 worldwide mobile operating system in 2010 and challenge Symbian for No.1 position by 2014 >> Gartner Via the Internet Archive: Gartner predicts that by 2014, open-source platforms will continue to dominate more than 60% of the market for smartphones. Single-source platforms, such as Apple's iOS and Research In Motion's OS, will increase in unit terms, but their growth rate will be below market average and not enough to sustain share increase. Windows Phone will be relegated to sixth place behind MeeGo in Gartner's worldwide OS ranking by 2014.

The interesting part is not that Gartner got it wrong (predictions are hard; Symbian was still riding high at the time, though just months from being dumped by Nokia's to-be-hired chief executive), but why it got it wrong. Were handset makers' and carriers' plans - so hard to perceive? And in that case, what else might be brewing? Firefox's on fire with 500M users and 50M Android downloads for 2013 >> VentureBeat Firefox OS for mobiles slightly less of a hit. But it's early days.

Streetview Landing Page Prototype >> Google Code Also known as "where in the world does Google have Street View coverage?" Impressive - though not without oddities: why does Martinique have SV but Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad don't? China touch panel makers to see strong shipments to smartphone, tablet, notebook segments in 2014 >> Digitimes Research China-based makers will ship 575.315m touch panels for smartphones, 164.506m units for tablets and 10.362m units for notebooks in 2014, increasing on year by 34.4%, 39.6% and 304.0% respectively, according to Digitimes Research.

Film-based models will account for 70.4% of China makers' smartphone touch panel shipments and 44.4% of the tablet touch segment, while the corresponding proportions for glass-based models will be 21.0% and 54.6%. Resistive touch will have 8.6% and 1% of the shipments to the smartphone and tablet sregments respecitvely, Digitimes Research indicated.

From which we conclude that (1) touch-based notebooks aren't expected to take off much, even if they are quadrupling shipments (2) there are still some tablets with resistive screens.

Why the PC will not die >> Newsweek, May 1999 Note the date: this was May 31 1999. Here's Bill Gates: But what really sets the PC apart is the incredible empowerment and flexibility it offers in a single, economical package. Sitting at your PC, you can do your taxes, surf the Web, write letters, e-mail friends, play games, plan a business, buy a car, do your homework... in fact, do whatever you want.

The PC has given the average American the kind of computing power that 10 years ago was found only in large corporations. Yet people now take this for granted -- and want more. They want to do many of the things they can do on their PC regardless of where they are or what device they are using -- whether it's a palm-size computer, a Web-enabled cell phone, an Auto PC or a smart television like WebTV. A combination of sophisticated software, powerful microprocessors, wireless technology and high-bandwidth connectivity is starting to make that a reality.

For most people at home and at work, the PC will remain the primary computing tool; you'll still want a big screen and a keyboard to balance your investment portfolio, write a letter to Aunt Agnes, view complex Web pages, and you'll need plenty of local processing power for graphics, games and so on. But the PC will also work in tandem with other cool devices.

You could replace "PC" with "tablet" or "smartphone" in the first two paragraphs; and arguably for parts of the third. Gates was right, as ever, but much too early. And it hasn't been Microsoft which has implemented so many of these "cool devices".

HTC says German injunction will not impact One series sales >> Focus Taiwan HTC, in response to the German court's ruling, said eight of its nine Android mobile phones were found to have infringed upon Nokia's patent, with the HTC One and its variants - the One mini and One Max - being found not to have infringed on the patent claimed by Nokia.

"This means that HTC will continue to supply our customers with our entire line of flagship devices. We will still be seeking to revoke Nokia's EP'071 patent in our pending nullity action in Germany, as we believe it to be invalid," the Taoyuan-based company said in an emailed reply to China News Agency.

The "entire line of flagship devices" being the HTC One, HTC One Max and HTC One mini.

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(c) 2013 Guardian Newspapers Limited.

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