News Articles

Monday, September 24, 2012

Last week at The Fonecast: 24th September 2012

Apple loses Google Maps… and quite a few major landmarks

Mark Bridge writes:

Oooh, a new phone. It’s running a powerful new processor, it has a large edge-to-edge toughened glass display and its model name bears the familiar ‘i’ suffix. Hang on a moment. Suffix?  Yes, suffix. This isn’t a new Apple device but Motorola Mobility’s first Intel-powered Android smartphone, the RAZR i.

Arguably it wasn’t a great week for Motorola’s launch, what with HTC’s new flagship handsets and the iPhone 5 going on sale.

HTC presented us with the Windows Phone 8X and the Windows Phone 8S, both of which are expected to hit the shops from November. An exceptionally close relationship with Microsoft is hinted at by the appearance of ‘Windows Phone 8’ in their names. Wonder if Nokia is jealous?

It’s certainly not unhappy with some of the fuss surrounding Apple’s iPhone 5, which went on sale last Friday. A couple of days earlier the iOS 6 operating system saw an official release – and the replacement of Google Maps with Apple’s own mapping service has drawn many an unfavourable comparison. Apple’s data seems significantly less detailed to the offerings from Google and Nokia, causing much amusement amongst naysayers.

There was also slightly worrying news for fans of machine-to-machine communications – M2M isn’t being implemented as quickly as some had forecast, according to new research – and for lovers of QR codes, who found the UK was lagging behind the rest of Europe when it came to adoption and usage. Conversely, tablet sales were doing much better than expected.

Sticking with good news, we learned that a Norwegian study had found no scientific evidence that radiation from mobile phones causes adverse health effects and we heard that high-speed broadband services could be available in aircraft fairly soon.

Discount service Groupon moved into the mobile payment arena, Google acquired another photo software company, Good Technology introduced professional services to help businesses move to a ‘Bring Your Own Device’ scheme and O2 snuggled up with augmented reality platform Aurasma.

However, if you really want an unexpected tech partnership, you need UK artist Dominic Wilcox, technologist Becky Stewart and shoe maker Stamp Shoes. Together they’ve created ‘No Place Like Home’, a pair of leather shoes that’ll guide you home via built-in GPS and LED indicators. You activate them – much like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz – by clicking the heels together.

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Author: The Fonecast
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