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OnLive, a company that provides console-quality games streamed over the internet, has announced the launch of its app for Android and iOS smartphones and tablets. The OnLive app allows portable device users to play console games that they normally would not have access to.

OnLive calls its service “cloud gaming,” and it offers access to nearly 200 console and PC games without having to install them locally. The company’s servers do all of the hard crunching and processing of the game remotely, and then stream it to users’ devices. This method allows relatively slow mobile devices to play high-end games that usually require much more computing power. Users have the ability to stream the games to their devices over Wi-Fi or 4G LTE cellular networks, though the service will obviously work much better with faster connections.

The company says that over 25 games in its library, including top-tier titles like L.A. Noire, have already been adapted to the touchscreen controls that smartphones and tablets require. The rest of the games can be played with the optional Universal OnLive Wireless Controller that connects to a device over Bluetooth and costs $49.99. The OnLive service has built-in syncing across multiple devices, so users can play a game on their tablet, and then pick up where they left off on their PC with the OnLive PC app.

The OnLive app is available for free in the Android Market now and is expected to hit the iTunes App Store in the near future. The Universal OnLive Wireless Controller is expected to be available in the U.S. and UK in the near future as well. Games can be rented or purchased for play on the service, and OnLive also has subscription options available.

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Microsoft on Tuesday began wooing developers for a February opening of its first “app store” for computers powered by the US technology giant’s Windows software.

The Windows Store will open in late February when Microsoft releases a test version of its next-generation Windows 8 operating system.

It will take on Apple and Google in the booming market of fun, hip or functional programs built for smartphones, tablets, or computers.

“I think we are going to do great,” Windows Web Services vice president Antoine Leblond said as he gave developers and press a preview of the store in a San Francisco art gallery.

“The reach of Windows is absolutely huge and can’t be matched,” he continued, noting that the Microsoft operating system powers a half billion computers around the world.

Independent developers understandably devote their limited resources to making programs for platforms that promise the most potential customers, and Windows would outshine Apple gadgets and Google Android devices in that regard.

However, Windows has a meager presence when it comes to smartphones and tablets, where third-party applications such as games are typically bought.


Google on Tuesday announced that more than 10 billion applications had been downloaded worldwide in its software store Android Market.

In a company blog post, Google said Android Market reached the milestone with a growth rate of one billion app downloads per month after app downloads hit 6 billion in July.

Partnering with some Android developers, Google also unveiled a ten-day celebration with a selection of apps for only 10 cents each day since Tuesday.

We can’t wait to see where this accelerating growth takes us in 2012,” said Eric Chu, director of Android developer ecosystem, in the blog.

Google has been gearing up to close the gap with Apple in the mobile market. Thanks to the broader availability of smartphones and tablets running Android, the software’s mobile market share is expected to be twice as Apple’s iOS in 2011, according to data from several research companies.

In July, Apple said app downloads had surpassed 15 billion in its App Store.


New Zealand already has lush rainforests and sandy beaches, bungee jumping and scuba diving, gourmet restaurants and lively night life, even a thriving tech community that has drawn investment from the likes of Peter Thiel. (Of course, they drive on the left side of the road, but hey no place is perfect).

Now the country has something else the rest of the world does not: Facebook’s new Timeline feature.

New Zealand is getting first crack at the major redesign of the profile page. Key to the decision: It’s English speaking and very far away from Silicon Valley.

That’s according to Sam Lessin, product director of Timeline, who told the New Zealand Herald: “We chose New Zealand to be first — and I’ll probably get in trouble for saying this — primarily because it is an English-speaking country…. It’s far away from our data centers, so we can monitor speed and performance.”

It may also have something to do with the country having about 4.4 million people, 2 million of whom are on Facebook.

And just how long will the rest of the world have to wait?

“We’re definitely taking our time with this one,” Lessin said. “It will give people a chance to get excited about what they can do with it.”

via LA times


A court error on Friday offered a brief glimpse at information that Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics have tried to shield from the public during their high-stakes patent litigation.

The material appears to be less important for what it says about the companies than what it reveals about efforts to keep court proceedings secret.

In denying Apple’s bid to stop Samsung from selling its Galaxy smartphone and tablets in the United States, District Judge Lucy Koh’s ruling inadvertently included details she had intended to black out. The judge’s staff quickly realized the error, sealed the electronic document and posted a redacted version four hours later.

The fuller version, which Reuters obtained while it was publicly available, did not expose the technical inner workings of the iPad — or anything close. Rather, it contained internal company analysis about the smartphone market, as well as some details about Apple’s patent licensing relationships with other tech companies.

The lawsuit, which Apple filed in April in a San Jose, California, federal court, says Samsung’s Galaxy products “slavishly” copy the iPhone and iPad. The South Korean electronics maker says Apple’s arguments lack merit.

The case is scheduled for trial next year. The Friday ruling means Samsung can continue selling Galaxy products for now.

Sealing documents has become standard in intellectual property cases. Investors, academics and other observers have expressed concern that some judges too readily accede to litigants’ claims that documents contain trade secrets and must be kept private.

Judges have wide latitude in granting company sealing requests, and Koh has granted all of Apple and Samsung’s requests to keep documents secret in the case.

Some crucial legal briefs from both companies were kept entirely secret for months, and then released with redactions. After an inquiry from Reuters last week, Koh issued new guidelines so that redacted briefs become public much sooner.

Timothy Holbrook, an intellectual property professor at Emory Law in Atlanta who reviewed Koh’s Friday ruling at Reuters’ request, said there did not appear to be any trade secrets among the blacked-out portions.

“Most of it just seems like it was sealed out of an abundance of caution,” Holbrook said.

In an email on Monday, Koh declined to comment on a pending case. Representatives for Apple and Samsung also declined to comment.

SMARTPHONE, TABLET BATTLE

The California case is just one battleground in Apple and Samsung’s bruising legal war, which includes more than 20 cases in 10 countries as they jostle for the top spot in the smartphone and tablet markets.

Global tablet sales are expected to explode to more than 50 million in 2011. Apple, which has sold more than 30 million iPads so far, is expected to continue to dominate the market in the near term.

While Amazon.com has also entered the fray with its Kindle Fire tablet, Samsung’s Galaxy line-up is widely deemed the closest rival to the iPad in terms of capability and design.

In her 65-page ruling denying Apple’s request for a preliminary injunction against Samsung, Koh attempted to redact nearly two dozen sentences or short fragments. But because of a formatting characteristic in the prior electronic version, the redacted material can be viewed by copying text from the PDF and pasting it into another document.

The version now available to the public cannot be viewed in such a manner.

According to the redacted portions, Apple’s own studies show that existing customers are unlikely to switch from iPhones to Samsung devices. Instead, the evidence suggests an increase in sales of Samsung smartphones is likely to come at the expense of other smartphones with Android operating systems, Koh wrote.

In arguing against the injunction, Samsung — which is also a huge components supplier to Apple — said Apple’s supply cannot keep up with market demand for smartphone products. Koh recounted the argument in the redacted portions of the ruling.

But Koh then called Samsung’s argument “dubious,” given rebuttal evidence presented by Apple regarding its ability to keep up with demand in the long term.

The redacted portions also refer to licensing deals that Apple struck with other high-tech companies over one of its key patents. Issued in December 2008, the patent covers the method of scrolling documents and images on Apple’s touch-screen devices.

Apple has already licensed the patent to IBM and Nokia, according to the ruling. A technology blog, The Verge, first reported this detail on Saturday; the blog said it had been shown two statements that were redacted from the ruling.

Scant information has previously been made available about Apple’s licensing deals with Nokia or IBM.

While Apple and Nokia publicly announced a patent settlement for an undisclosed sum in June, they did not divulge any specifics, except to say the agreement resolved all litigation between the companies and that Apple would make a one-time payment to Nokia and pay future royalties. At the time, the settlement was viewed as a victory for Nokia.

There appears to be no reference to any patent-licensing deal for mobile technology between IBM and Apple either in news archives or company regulatory filings.

“Apple doesn’t license much, and it could be that they don’t want people to know who the licensees are,” said Holbrook, the IP professor.

Representatives for IBM and Nokia did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Monday.

Samsung was also offered a royalty license during negotiations with Apple in November 2010, the ruling says, five months before Apple wound up suing Samsung in the United States.

Apple has brought claims against Samsung based on design patents — which protect the look and feel of a device — and so-called “utility” patents, which cover engineering innovations.

A footnote in the ruling says “it does not appear” that Apple and Samsung discussed design patents during their negotiations that preceded the lawsuit.

Yet since much of Koh’s opinion covers design patents, the mistakenly released data does not reveal much about the inner workings of the technology, said Holbrook.

“There was nothing I saw that was shocking, just stuff that is not (otherwise) available to the public,” he said.

The case in U.S. District Court, Northern District of California is Apple Inc v. Samsung Electronics Co Ltd et al, 11-1846.

(Reporting by Dan Levine in San Francisco and Carlyn Kolker in New York; Additional reporting by Jeremy Pelofsky in Washington; Editing by Martha Graybow and John Wallace)

via reuters


Though Android Ice Cream Sandwich is only available for the Samsung Galaxy Nexus right now, it’s done enough to make us Android 2.3 users pretty dissatisfied with our perfectly decent OS. If reports are accurate, the update floodgates should be set to open – starting with the Google Nexus S.

The Google Nexus S is the former lead Android device and the Samsung Galaxy Nexus’s immediate predecessor. It’s a decent phone, with a 4-inch Super AMOLED display and a 1GHz single-core processor. It didn’t rock people’s world half as much as the Galaxy Nexus has, though.

Still, one of the key benefits of Google Nexus S ownership over the past 12 months or so has been priority updates – and that seems to be the case even with the next gen Android Ice Cream Sandwich too.

According to a number of Google+ postings, Google is in the process of testing its new OS on its old Nexus S device. How is it doing this testing? By using its own employees as guinea pigs, of course.


If you’re keen to try out the new Nokia Lumia 800 Windows Phone, then Nokia is offering you the chance to get your hands on a handset for free thanks to the Nokia Amazing Collective. And you could even win some great gifts and free prizes, so why not sign up today at Nokia UK Facebook?

The Nokia Amazing Collective has been set up by Nokia UK to give people across the country the chance to try out the Nokia Lumia 800 free. All you have to do to be in with a chance is visit the Nokia UK Facebook page, click on the Join The Amazing Collective link at the left-hand side of the screen and then answer eight easy questions about your current smartphone usage.

Places on the Nokia Amazing Collective are limited, so sign up as soon as you can, if you want to take part and try out the first Nokia Windows Phone. You could be enjoying your own Nokia Lumia 800 handset before you know it and win some great prizes. And it’s all completely free, so why not sign up now?


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