Xolo Play T1000 Review

xolo-play-t1000-box.jpg

 

Xolo, which makes budget Android smartphones, announced itself with a bang with first Intel-powered smartphone in the world. After launching a few other Intel-based phones, it launched Mediatek processor based dual-core phones under the A series and quad-core phones under its Q series.

With the Xolo Play T1000, Xolo becomes the first Indian OEM to sell a phone featuring Nvidia’s Tegra 3 processor and is touting the device as a gaming smartphone.With this, Xolo now offers phones based on different hardware across its various product lines. But does the company do enough to carve a niche for itself in a very competitive smartphone market? We find out in this review.

Design/ Build

If you are among the few who insist on being seen with the snazziest looking device in town, the Xolo Play will disappoint you.The phone measures 70×138.4×10.4mm and weighs about 167 grams.The design of the Xolo Play is simple, with no hardware buttons on the front panel. However, the device has good build quality and doesn’t feel plasticky.

The front of the phone is dominated by an all-glass panel that extends right to the edges. Circling the front edge is a thin chrome strip that adds to the aesthetics of the smartphone. There are three capacitive buttons for Settings, Home and Back,which are backlit, but a little too dim than usual. The rear panel is rubberised and helps in offering a good grip.

 

xolo-play-t1000-back_panel.jpg

The button placement on the Xolo Play is similar to other Android smartphones in the segment. The right edge has the volume rocker and the power/ lock button, though we wished it could feature a dedicated camera button, as well.The top panel has the headphone jack and the Micro-USB slot, while the left is barren with no keys,and the bottom edge features the microphone.We felt that the positioning of the power/ lock button above the volume rocker key was a trifle odd as we often ended up pressing the volume rocker button when we wanted to unlock the device.

Just above the display, we have the earpiece grill, with the front-facing camera located to the right.The back of our Black Xolo Play sports the rear-camera lens in the centre, right above the LED flash and both are enclosed in a metallic frame.A Xolo logo sits in the middle, with the bottom part featuring Nvidia Tegra branding embossed along with the speaker grill at the bottom-left corner.

The back panel can be opened using a small crevice on the bottom right corner of the phone. Removing the panel reveals the 2000mAh battery covering the slots for the SIM cards, which are of regular size and the microSD card.The battery needs to be removed to access the SIMs and the memory card.

The overall design of the Xolo Play is not an eyesore but is definitely not designed to turn heads and looks rather plain.

Display

The Xolo Play comes with a 4.7-inch HD display of 720×1280 pixels resolution with One Glass Solution (OGS) Technology, translating to a density of 312 pixels per inch. While that doesn’t sound impressive when compared to some high-end Android smartphones, the real life experience is decent.

xolo-play-t1000-front panel.jpg

Under sun visibility on the Xolo Play is above average at full brightness levels and the screen used in this smartphone is reflective. Colour reproduction and viewing angles on the IPS display are not that bad. We observed that the display of the smartphone picked up smudges easily and is also a fingerprint magnet, we had a tough time getting rid of them.

Overall, while we sure wish the Xolo Play came with a full-HD display, we had no qualms about the quality of this one.

Camera

The Xolo Play sports an 8-megapixel rear camera with BSI (Back Side Illumination) Sensor accompanied by an LED flash. The camera app on the device is stock and does not feature many additional options. The images clicked with the phone were not the sharpest and colours at times,seemed just a bit washed out.We found the details in the images and noise well under control,when there’s plenty of light. However, the same cannot be said for the low-light shots

xolo-play-sample-shots-outdoor-1.jpg

 

The camera is also capable of capturing videos at 720p HD resolution and even full-HD resolution, though the videos turned out to be of average quality. One can also click images while taking videos.The camera software lets you tweak a few settings for still pictures like Scene mode (Auto, Night, Sunset), ISO, White Balance, Face-detection and Focus Assist Light. There’s no Panorama mode.

 

xolo-play-sample-shots-outdoor-2.jpg

 

There is a 2-megapixel front camera, as well. The front camera is good for video chats and for clicking self-portraits and the quality is nothing to be written home about.

Software/ Interface

The Xolo Play runs Android 4.1.1 Jelly Bean out of the box. We were a bit surprised to see the Xolo Play running an older version of Android.With the hardware specifications it boasts of, we expected it to come with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean.Xolo’s other budget offering, the Xolo Q700 runs Android 4.2 (Jelly Bean) out of the box.

That said,the Xolo Play packs in a fair deal in terms of software.The basic Android interface has not been tampered with much, although the absence of hardware keys means that you will have to depend on three soft buttons below the display which light up whenever the display is in use to find your way around, with the Home button also doubling up as an app switcher on long press.The lock screen and the settings menu of the Xolo Play looks pretty much like any other stock Android smartphone.

 

screenshot-xolo-play-display.jpg

Similar to most other Android devices, there are five customizable home screens on which you can drop widgets and app shortcuts.

The notification tray includes toggles for settings such as Wi-Fi, Brightness, Rotation, Bluetooth, GPS, Data, Screen timeouts and profiles (for alerts and other notifications).

The notification tray also features a shortcut for settings and a clear all notifications shortcut, along with expandable notifications (expanded with the two finger pull gesture). Android 4.1 Jelly Bean also brings in Google Now, the handy virtual assistant.

The Xolo Play comes with the usual Android goodies like Gmail, Google Maps and Google Talkin addition to some bundled apps like a file manager, a video player and a profile manager. The device comes with few other pre-loaded applications such as Facebook, News and Weather.One of the biggest advantages of the Nvidia chipset is the access to Nvidia’s Tegra Zone that offers a number of apps and games optimised for the Tegra-powered devices.Of course, you can always head over to the Google Play Store to get more apps.

The company has also bundled some of its own apps like Xolo Care, Xolo Power and Xolo Secure on the Xolo Play. These apps were also found on previously launched Xolo smartphones.The Xolo Care app lets you contact customer care.

 

screenshot-xolo-play-preloaded-apps-big.jpg

The Xolo Power app can help manage the battery of the smartphone. It shows the estimated battery backup time that the user will get based on the applications that are currently running. It also gives options to kill apps.It also offers a ‘Low battery mode’ that disables Wi-Fi, cellular data, GPS, Bluetooth and also reduces screen brightness to conserve the battery, when the battery is about to die.Xolo Secure let you track and lock the smartphone in case its lost.

Performance/ Battery Life

The highlight of the Xolo Play T1000 is its 1.5GHz quad-core NvidiaTegra3 processor with a 5th low-power core which is accompanied by a 12 Core Nvidia ULP GeForce.

The smartphone also packs in 1GB of RAM and 4GB of internal storage, out of which only 2.3GB is user accessible. However, one can expand the storage up to 32GB with the help of a microSD card.

Without any doubts,the Xolo Play’s specifications sound quite acceptable on paper. But unfortunately, the same is not the case in real life performance. We found the smartphone lagging in launching some apps. Admittedly, the lag is not that consistent but considering that an Nvidia quad-core processor backs the smartphone, it is quiet disappointing.

xolo-play-t1000-removable-back.jpg

 

The company is promoting the device as a gaming smartphone and we found the Xolo Play performs quite well in that department.

Playing our usual list of games, including the optimised games for Tegra 3 devices, the smartphone fared well and we got a consistently decent gaming experience. However, the biggest compromise for playing games for longer periods on the smartphone is the battery backup. After a full charge, when we started playing games on the smartphone it merely lasted for 4 hours before we had to reach out for the charger.

Call quality on the Xolo Play was also decent.We were able to play full-HD clips, with all formats including MOV and AVI being supported natively.

The Xolo Play comes with a 2000mAh battery, and in our usage, it would last a full day. We charged the smartphone in the morning, and with medium to heavy usage, including an hour of phone calls, two email accounts configured, listening to some music, long hours of gaming (Temple Run 2, Skiing Fred, Vector and Shadowgun), taking some casual photographs and chat notifications, the phone lasted for 12-13 hours.It’s worth pointing out that we had turned on Wi-Fi and auto-brightness, and the phone was also hooked to a 3G network with normal browsing. Changing these settings may help in increasing the phone’s battery life, depending on your usage pattern.

Verdict

The Xolo Play is a phone that does the job without really excelling in any particular aspect. It has decent performance, about average battery life and a fairly stock Android experience. However, like most Android smartphones in the price range, the camera is mediocre. But the biggest disappointment is the fact that it Is still running Android 4.1, when Android 4.3 is out and most competitors sport Android 4.2. Worse, there is no upgrade path in sight.

If you are looking for alternatives, consider the Zen Ultrafone 701 HD or the Karbonn S5 Titanium. For non-Android options, you can look at the Nokia Lumia 620. All three phones are available at a discount compared to the Xolo Play. If you can stretch your budget a bit, look at the excellent Nokia Lumia 720.

Price: Rs. 15,999

 

$199 game consoles aren’t worth the money you’re saving

Sony and Microsoft both offer stripped-down current-gen consoles for $199, but spending just a little more really can pay off.

 

 

The next-gen Xbox One and PlayStation 4 game consoles are both coming in November. In the meantime, current-generation Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 consoles are more affordable than ever — both available for the very reasonable sum of $199. But are these entry-level models so stripped-down that they’re a bad investment? Or are they a budget gamer’s dream?

The dilemma
It’s hard to imagine that anyone interested in buying an Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 doesn’t already own one (it’s been a half-dozen years, people). That said, there’s still a lot of fun to be had. Both the Microsoft and Sony consoles have a huge library of excellent games, and both double as excellent full-on entertainment devices, thanks to streaming apps like Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Amazon Video. And while the next-gen consoles beckon, they’re considerably more expensive — $499 for the Xbox One, $399 for the PS4 — and they’ll have a comparatively small handful of games available before the end of the year (no, you won’t be able to play 360 games on the One, nor PS3 games on a PS4).

So there’s good enough reason to get an “old” current-gen console. But each of the $199 versions is compromised enough that you should seriously consider paying the extra $50 to $100 for step-up models. Here’s how they both stack up

 

$199 PlayStation 3

 

The $199 PS3 officially hit the US this past week. Essentially, it’s identical to the 2012 superslim PS3, but it includes only 12GB of flash memory, rather than the 250GB to 500GB hard drive found on the more-expensive model. Unlike the very first version of the console from 2006, the current PS3 trades the original slot-loading drive for a sliding plastic disc drive cover, only has two USB ports, lacks memory card support, and offers no ability to play PS2 games.

None of those feature downgrades is a big deal, but the paltry 12GB of storage is. Download just a few games or some video content, and you’ll be stuck. I’m especially wary, as I’ve spent several afternoons clearing bulky old saved games and installed game content off my original first-gen PS3 hardware to free up a little hard-drive space.

On the other hand, DIYers with a spare eSATA hard drive on hand can drop it into the PS3 and upgrade the storage — so for some folks, the math may work (more on that option below).

Why you should avoid it: Very little onboard storage; next-gen PS4 coming in November; full 250GB bundles are only $50 more (see below).

Might be worth it: You can still install a standard HDD; smaller, lighter, and more power efficient than earlier versions.

 

 

$199 Xbox 360

 

The model formerly known as the Xbox 360 Arcade (because you were more likely to play lightweight Xbox Live Arcade games on it) is still kicking around for $199. With only 4GB of onboard storage, it reminds me of the original Xbox 360 hardware, where an entry-level model skipped the hard drive entirely, forcing you to rely on proprietary memory cards (one of which I still have kicking around somewhere just to show to people who forgot they ever existed).

Now in its third outer chassis, the latest Xbox 360 is slimmer and quieter than previous models. Like all current Xboxes, it includes built-in Wi-Fi, a feature missing from the 2005 original, but this setup drops the optical audio out found in every previous 360, and has one fewer USB ports for accessories (the optical audio is a big deal if you want to simultaneously send video via HDMI to a monitor and audio to a speaker system).

That paltry 4GB is hardly enough space to download much content at all. This model is good if you’re into streaming only (Netflix and the like) and if you’re using Xbox 360 cloud saves for your games. But both of them require the Xbox Live Gold plan, which will cost you another $60 per year.

Also, upgraders should note: unlike the PS3, which accepts an off-the-shelf laptop hard drive, the Xbox 360 requires a proprietary hard-drive module, as explained below. But at around $50, it can still represent something of a discount ($250-ish for the 4GB console plus hard drive) versus the $299 Xbox 360.

Why you should avoid it: Minuscule onboard storage; next-gen Xbox One coming later this year; loses the optical audio out of previous models; installing a larger HDD requires proprietary hardware; one less USB port; retail bundles can get you a lot more for an extra $50-$100.

Might be worth it: The upcoming Xbox One starts at a very expensive $499.

 

 

Reasonably priced upgrade options
If you think we’re trying to steer you away from the $199 versions of these consoles, you’d be right. That’s not just because both are about about to be forced into semi-obsolescence by newer hardware. If you shop around, you can actually get better versions of these budget consoles for just a little more.

I’d specifically point you toward this PS3 bundle available various places online, including Amazon, which combines a 250GB PS3, a copy of Uncharted 3 (available separately for $39), and a one-year subscription to Sony’s PlayStation Plus service (which normally costs $49), all for $249.

There’s no Xbox 360 deal that’s as good, but some retailers, including Walmart, offer $250 bundles that include two wireless controllers and your choice of a large list of games, including Halo 4, Tomb Raider, and Borderlands 2. For about $300, another Xbox 360 bundle includes a 250GB console and both Batman: Arkham City and Darksiders II.

In any case, there’s a good chance of further price drops when the new consoles are released in/around November, either from Microsoft and Sony, or from retailers looking to clear out old hardware in time for the holiday shopping season.

 

pic::This USB stick has four times the storage of the $199 Xbox 360.

 

Going the DIY route
There’s one case where the $199 version of each console may make sense, and that’s if you’re looking to invest a little more time and effort, and a little less money, into upgrading your hard drive to a more usable capacity. As noted previously, both the 12GB PS3 and the 4GB Xbox 360 have hard-drive slots you can utilize for additional storage. But the upgrade isn’t as simple as slapping a new drive in and powering up.

The new $199 PS3 can take just about any current off-the-shelf 2.5-inch hard drive, but you’ll need mounting hardware to fit in the current slimmer console chassis, which is sold separately and can run between $10 and $25. After that, installation is easy, and there are a ton of online tutorials to walk you through the process.

Upgrading the Xbox 360 is a little tougher. Microsoft would strongly prefer you to use its own semi-proprietary hard drive, which runs $99 for a 320GB model. You can use a handful of other third-party drives, but the list can be very specific, such as this model, which gives you 320GB for $48. Another alternative is to use an external USB key with your Xbox 360. Microsoft even sells an Xbox-branded one with 16GB of space for $15 (currently discounted from an insane original price of $59), or you can get a 32GB model, such as the SanDisc Cruiser, for under $25, but the latter option requires drive formatting. You can add up to 32GB of space this way, but some content, including music files and content from original Xbox games, don’t work via USB.

In either case, you should be comfortable swapping out hardware and formatting the new drive (mostly just some button presses and patience on your part). It’s up to you to calculate how the time and effort expended in our DIY solution translates to cold, hard cash, and if you’d be happier spending a little more for a console with a large hard drive already built in.

 

 

Ubuntu Edge misses target by $19M margin

The smartphone project was aiming for $32 million, but raised just $12.8 million — still the most money ever pledge on Indiegogo. Backers say there’s still a bright future for Ubuntu phones.

 

 

Ubuntu Edge

 

 

The Ubuntu Edge has failed to hit its ambitious crowdfunding target by a whopping $19 million. The open-source mobile had aimed for the stars with a goal of $32 million, but fell far short, ending up with $12.8 million.

The phone won’t now be produced and all funds will be returned to contributors, within five working days.

It’s still the most money ever pledged on Indiegogo, the crowdfunding site used for the campaign, and it tops Kickstarter’s record of $10.3 million for the Pebble smartwatch.

 

The Edge was created by British company Canonical, which is behind the Ubuntu operating system.

“While we passionately wanted to build the Edge to showcase Ubuntu on phones, the support and attention it received will still be a huge boost as other Ubuntu phones start to arrive in 2014,” Canonical boss Mark Shuttleworth wrote in a post on Indiegogo.

 

 

Nokia to unveil Windows RT tablet next month, says report

Equipped with a quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor, the tablet will be sold through AT&T in the U.S., reports The Verge

 

Will Nokia add a tablet to its lineup next month?

 

Will Nokia add a tablet to its lineup next month?

 

Nokia could take the wraps off a new Windows RT tablet in late September.

Citing “sources familiar with Nokia’s plans,” The Verge said on Friday that Nokia will reveal the tablet at a launch event in New York tentatively slated for September 26. A recent story from blog site Windows Phone Central said that Nokia will hold a two-day event in NYC on September 26 and 27.

Codenamed Vanquish, the tablet will be outfitted with Windows RT and powered by a Qualcomm quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor. The device will support LTE and be carried by AT&T in the U.S., The Verge added.

Alleged photos of the Nokia tablet popped up Friday on Chinese site Digiwo. The snapshots show a red device with the Nokia name and the Windows RT logo. The Verizon name is also seen in the photos, meaning the tablet may be sold through both Verizon Wireless and AT&T.

Nokia has yet to reveal any specific details about a tablet but has admitted interest in the market.

In February, Nokia CEO Stephen Elop said the company was looking “very closely” at tabletsbut had nothing to announce yet. In May, Jo Harlow, executive vice president of smart devices for Nokia, added: “We’re very interested in tablets and that’s an area we’re looking at.”

Responding to CNET’s request for comment, a Nokia spokesperson said the company doesn’t comment on market rumors or speculation.

A look into the mind-bending Google Glass of 2029

How far-fetched is it, really, to go from today’s Google Glass to nanobots communicating between your brain and a Google cloud that is indistinguishable from a human?

 

pic::Google’s brain in the cloud, also known as a data center. (Credit: Google)

 

When Google Glass made its first public appearance on April 4, 2012, it signaled the beginning of a new era of computing. Consider the precedent: In the span of half a decade, the computer moved from the desktop to the pocket, and now with Glass it is moving to the head, on its way to eventually integrating itself inside the human body.

Ray Kurzweil, Google’s director of engineering, calls Glass a “solid first step” along the road to computers that rival and then exceed human intelligence. Kurzweil, who is also an accomplished inventor and futurist, predicts that by 2029 computers will match human intelligence, and nanobots inhabiting our brains will create immersive virtual reality environmentsfrom within our nervous systems.

If you want to go into virtual reality the nanobots shut down the signals coming from your real senses and replace them with the signals that your brain would be receiving if you were actually in the virtual environment. So this will provide full-immersion virtual reality incorporating all of the senses. You will have a body in these virtual-reality environments that you can control just like your real body, but it does not need to be the same body that you have in real reality. We’ll be able to interact with people in any way in these virtual-reality environments. That will replace most travel, but we’ll also have new travel technologies for our real bodies using nanotechnology.

pic:;

As a Google Director of Engineering Ray Kurzweil is working on improving computer understanding of natural language. As Ray Kurzweil the author of ‘The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology,’ he is working to reverse engineer the human brain

 

Further down the road people will be uploading their entire brains to computers, Kurzweil said. The human brain will gain additional thinking power, expanding the neocortex into the compute cloud in the 2030s, Kurzweil said, accessing trillions of new concepts and experiences at speeds much faster than the biological brain. The fusion of digital and biological parts will enable a qualitative leap for humans based on a quantitative expansion of thinking, according to Kurzweil.

It’s not clear whether Google’s co-founders fully buy into Kurzweil’s view of technology evolution or his notion of “Singularity,” a prediction that around 2045 intelligence will become more nonbiological and trillions of times more powerful, and any distinction between humans and machines, so-called reality and virtual reality will be erased.

But, it wouldn’t be out of character for Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin to consider moon shots like Google’s servers with direct and assistive connections to your brain, as they have for self-driving cars. It’s mind bending to think about the implications, but it seems possible that Google could monetize your brain instantaneously as it thinks.

pic::Google’s Sergey Brin is personally funding the development of in-vitro, lab-grown beef.

Hunger pangs? Google’s brain, cohabiting with your bio-brain, immediately flashes images of food, optimized for your health and eating pleasure, based on data from the sensors capturing your vital signs, data from anonymized individuals with similar profiles, your refrigerator’s contents and super-targeted ad inventory.

The image that elicited the biggest autonomic response is ordered from a local eatery, or if you are part of the DIY movement, it will display a recipe with preparation instructions from your tiny Glass eye embedded in your retina or visual cortex. Alternatively, it could be prepared by a robot or even formulated on the spot from base chemistry by nanobots. Google receives payment for various contextual ads and offers that are part of the human-computer data flow across the indistinguishable virtual and real worlds.

Biologically inspired software?
Coming back to the present, Kurzweil’s tenure at Google to date doesn’t yet appear to include merging the human brain with the Google cloud or creating a future version of Glass the size of a blood cell that runs through your brain capillaries.

He came to Google late last year with the more modest charter of improving Google computers’ understanding of natural language, which is a prerequisite for artificially intelligent computers that pass for human. It’s part of a Google’s effort to move to “conversational search,” where it’s possible to have speech as the primary input for a device.

“We are developing software that is biologically inspired and uses the lessons that biological evolution learned in evolving the human brain and neocortex to create intelligent machines,”Kurzweil said.

Google has a well-established research program for developing artificial intelligence. Applying design principles from neural networks, Google engineers realized significant improvements in the quality of the speech recognition. Google has also built a large data repository, Knowledge Graph, with nearly a billion objects and billions of relationships among them as a foundation for understanding the semantic content and context of queries.

“Knowledge Graph has good coverage of people, places, things, and events, but there is plenty it doesn’t know about. We are at 1 percent,” John Giannandrea, director of engineering for the repository, told CNET.

pic::Jeff Dean has been involved in many of Google’s key technology projects during his 14 years at the company.

While Kurzweil and Google have moon shot ambitions for the future of Glass, it will enter a mode of incremental improvements over the next half decade. Smartphones over the last five years have become far more capable, powerful and popular each year, following the cadence of Moore’s Law, but there has been no quantum leap. Over the next few years, Glass also faces a tougher adoption curve than smartphones, which are more essential for users than the wearable accessory.

For Glass to break through, natural language input and conversational search need to make quantum leaps. Google Fellow Jeff Dean says that voice search and image recognition will substantially improve the next five years.

“If you’re using Google Glass, it’s going to be able to look around and read all the text on signs and do background lookups on additional information and serve that. That will be pretty exciting,” Dean said in an interview with TechFlash.

However, Google’s brain needs to have a better understanding of natural language, which part of Kurzweil’s mandate. “If we could get to the point where we understand sentences, that will really be quite powerful,” Dean said. “So if two sentences mean the same thing but are written very differently, and we are able to tell that, that would be really powerful. Because then you do sort of understand the text at some level because you can paraphrase it.”

A problem for search engines today is that much of the data isn’t “labeled,” Dean said. It doesn’t offer much data to describe itself in a way would make it easier for a search engine to catalog. In addition, answers to more complicated queries require stitching together pieces of data from wildly disparate sources.

For example, a Web page doesn’t exist to answer the question, “What’s the Google engineering office with the highest average temperature?,” Dean told TechFlash. “There’s no Web page that has that data on it. But if you know a page that has all the Google offices on it, and you know how to find historical temperature data, you can answer that question. But making the leap to being able to manipulate that data to answer the question depends fundamentally on actually understanding what the data is.”

Nor does Google’s brain know how to book your vacation or business trip. “That’s a very high-level set of instructions. And if you’re a human, you’d ask me a bunch of follow-up questions, ‘What hotel do you want to stay at?’ ‘Do you mind a layover?’ – that sort of thing,” Dean said. “I don’t think we have a good idea of how to break it down into a set of follow-up questions to make a manageable process for a computer to solve that problem. The search team often talks about this as the ‘conversational search problem.'”

Google isn’t yet talking about bringing Glass into the augmented reality world of 3D and virtual reality. At present, it can take videos and pictures, send a tweet and provide notifications, but will likely enter the augmented reality realm within next five years, especially as the cost and size of processors, sensors and other components come down and the power increases.

Startups such as Meta are getting a head start on Google. With the next two years, the company expects to ship augmented-reality glasses that combine the power of a laptop and smartphone in a pair of stylish frames that map gesture-controlled virtual objects into the physical world, similar to the movie portrayals of app control via gestures in “Iron Man” and “Avatar.”

But even Google Glass with 3D, augmented reality and vastly improved conversational search is still a primitive toy in Kurzweil’s long view. “We’ll make ourselves a billion times smarter by 2045,” Kurzweil says.

In a 30-year span, computing has progressed from the Macintosh, which launched in 1984, to Google Glass. A moon shot traversing from today’s Google Glass to nanobots communicating between your brain and a Google cloud that is indistinguishable from a human in the next 15 to 30 years is difficult to digest, but not that far fetched.

New Nexus 7 owners bump into multitouch issues

The tablet’s touch screen seems to go a bit haywire in response to more than one touch, an issue that Google says it’s investigating

The new Nexus 7.

The new Nexus 7 may be a bit out of touch when it comes to multitouch.

Several owners of Google’s new tablet say the screen doesn’t respond properly when they perform certain multitouch actions, such as pinching to zoom in or touching the screen with two fingers to move an item. Commenters posting on Google Groups and the XDA Developers forum over the past couple of weeks report a few related issues.

In some cases, pinching the screen causes surrounding items to jump around. In other cases, several attempts must be made to move an object successfully using multitouch. Some users also say the on-screen keyboard is buggy, registering a single tap as a double tap.

Some owners say they traded in their bad models for new ones, with mixed results.

Google apparently has confirmed the issue and is looking into it. Paul Wilcox, Google community manager for Android, posted the following response in the Google Groups thread: “The Android team is aware of this issue and investigating. I’ll post an update when there’s new information to share.”

The new Nexus 7 also has been beset with a GPS glitch that kills the connection after a certain number of minutes. Google reportedly is investigating that issue as well.

CNET contacted Google for comment and will update the story if further details are shared.

 

watch video here::http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=MYGd7GFVqB0

 

 

Tumblr founder to get $110 million to stay at Yahoo for the next four years

tumblr-founder-635.jpg

pic:;Yahoo’s recently completed acquisition of Internet blogging service Tumblr includes a $110 million payment to Tumblr founder David Karp as long as he remains on the job for the next four years.

 

The retention payment disclosed in a regulatory filing Thursday is part of the windfall that Karp and Tumblr investors realized by agreeing to sell the service for $1.1 billion in May.

Karp turned 27 last month. He started Tumblr in 2007, a few years after he dropped out of high school in New York to concentrate on computer programming.

Yahoo Inc. CEO Marissa Mayer has pledged not to make any dramatic changes at Tumblr in hopes that the acquisition won’t alienate the blogging service’s existing users, which includes a substantial number of teenagers and young adults.

As part of her promise “to not screw it up,” Mayer is allowing Karp to run Tumblr independently in New York. Yahoo is based in Sunnyvale, Calif.

Karp is believed to own a 20 to 25 percent stake in Tumblr, which means he probably has already received a windfall, which hasn’t been disclosed, from the sale to Yahoo. But he must stay at Tumblr until June 2017 under the provision disclosed Thursday to get the $110 million retention payment.

The payment will consist of $70 million in stock and options and $40 million in cash, according to Yahoo’s filing.

The documents also disclosed that Yahoo paid a total of $44 million to buy six other companies during the three months ending in June. All told, Yahoo paid about $1.15 billion to buy 10 companies, including Tumblr, during the first half of the year.

Yahoo has bought several other startups since the end of June. The prices for those deals are likely to be disclosed in another regulatory filing in October and November.