"Google wants to crush the two-year contract, making wireless services more competitive. Moto G and Nexus 5 have a chance at succeeding where earlier phones failed." (source infra)
"An unlocked, off-contract phone can be moved from one carrier to another simply by buying a new SIM card, effectively avoiding the typical two-year contracts that network operators love. For the carriers, the contracts cut down on customer churn. But to consumers, they mean big barriers for anyone who's dissatisfied with network coverage or other factors. For example, if one carrier introduces a competitive new plan, contract termination fees likely will make a person think twice about switching...." (source: With Moto G phone, Google's mobile revolution now plausible | Mobile - CNET News )
The wireless carriers got off light -- the carriers probably should have been criminally prosecuted -- millions have been taken unlawfully from consumers:
Sprint, T-Mobile, AT&T to Stop Charging for Spam Texts | News & Opinion | PCMag.com: "AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint have pledged to stop charging for spam or "premium" texts.
The announcement was made by Vermont Attorney General Bill Sorrell, who has been working with dozen of other state AGs to stop mobile cramming, or unauthorized third-party charges that pop up on mobile users' bills." (read more at the link above) more news below
Android 4.4 KitKat and Google's quest to take over the world | The Verge: " . . . Beneath the mild cosmetic changes, version 4.4 of the Android OS is about optimization . . . The focus on improving entry-level performance with KitKat is, in the eyes of industry observer Avi Greengart, “one of the smartest things Google has done for Android in a long time.” Greengart notes that although Android enjoys the lion’s share of smartphone sales in developing markets like China, those are most commonly Android 2.3 devices with sluggish responsiveness and no access to Google Play services. His perspective is supported by Strategy Analytics data that shows the Asia Pacific region is the fastest growing market for smartphone shipments and Android is the primary shipping OS — but “older versions and piecemeal UI tweaks have led to a compromised user experience. . . .” read more at link above
How the NSA is infiltrating private networks - The Washington Post: "The NSA, working with its British counterpart, the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), secretly taps into the internal networks of Yahoo and Google, the two biggest Internet companies by overall data traffic. The operation intercepts information flowing between the enormous data centers that those companies maintain around the world. In general, Google and Yahoo use privately owned or leased lines to synchronize their data centers. . . ." (read more at link above)
Apple MacBook Pro with Retina Display Review - Watch CNET's Video & Read Our Review: " . . . We were pleasantly surprised when the 13-inch MacBook Air saw its starting price cut to $1,099 earlier this year. The MacBook Pro follows, with its prices going from $2,199 down to $1,999 for the 15-inch version (and from $1,499 for the 13-inch version down to $1,299). That's a break from traditional Apple pricing, where prices would remain the same generation over generation, with updated components adding value. The 15-inch version defaults to 8GB RAM and a 256GB SSD (which Apple cheekily described as a "quarter terabyte"). Our review configuration of the 15-inch MacBook Pro is the step-up model (and it's a big step) for $2,599, with a faster 2.3GHZ Core i7, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, and the Nvidia GeForce 750M GPU. . . ." (more at link above)
Moto X isn't helping Motorola yet as losses widen | Mobile - CNET News: ". . . . Google's smartphone unit posted a third-quarter operating loss of $248 million, wider than the year-earlier loss of $192 million, but an improvement over the loss of $342 million from the second quarter.
Motorola's revenue fell 33 percent from a year ago to $1.18 billion.
The poor results come even as Google reported a third-quarter profit that rose by a third and topped Wall Street expectations . . . . Motorola, however, appears ready to play the long game, and has a well-funded backer in Google."
Might Google Have a Sly Motive Behind Motorola? - WSJ.com: " . . . So far, there's no evidence that the Motorola is pushing down prices. The Moto X is selling for $99 or less on contract, and is thus one of the best low-priced phone you can buy today. But Apple and Samsung don't seem to have noticed. Even with the launch of the lower priced iPhone 5C—which is basically last year's phone at $99—Apple's pricing structure is largely unchanged from previous years. But Google has always made clear that Motorola is a long-term play. It is willing to wait years and, I suspect, lose billions if the end result is cheap, great phones for everyone."
Phonebloks: "Phoneblok is made of detachable bloks. The bloks are connected to the base which locks everything together into a solid phone. If a blok breaks you can easily replace it; if it's getting old just upgrade."
The Cost of Connectivity 2013 | NewAmerica.org: "Last year, the New America Foundation’s Open Technology Institute published The Cost of Connectivity, a first-of-its-kind study of the cost of consumer broadband services in 22 cities around the world. The results showed that, in comparison to their international peers, Americans in major cities such as New York, Los Angeles, and Washington, DC are paying higher prices for slower Internet service. While the plans and prices have been updated in the intervening year, the 2013 data shows little progress, reflecting remarkably similar trends to what we observed in 2012."
Motorola hopes to tempt iPhone users to Moto X with iCloud migration tool | The Verge: "Motorola's Moto Maker site is primarily meant to help customize and purchase a new Moto X, but today the company is adding another feature: the option to transfer your contacts and calendars from an Apple iCloud account to a Google account. The process, according to Motorola's help document, is relatively straightforward. Simply enter in your iCloud credentials, then your Google credentials, and your data will be transferred from one to the other. The service only appears to be offered to new customers who have completed the purchase process at Moto Maker. . . ."
As Microsoft Updates Mobile Software, a Cautionary Tale - NYTimes.com: "If Microsoft has learned anything while competing against Google in the Internet search business, it’s that Google clings to a dominant position like a squatter does a house.The lesson is a relevant one for Microsoft’s mobile phone business. Microsoft is discovering that gains in market share for its phones are incremental, slowly acquired and ultimately dwarfed by Google’s position. . . . ." (read more at link above) more news below