Google Launches 5 Major New Products →
Wrap-up of Google’s I/O 2012 consumer-focused introductions: Android Jelly Bean, the Nexus 7 tablet, the Nexus Q media player, Google+ Events and Google Docs offline mode—with first-impressions reports on the 7 and the Q. (Hint: I’m a lot more optimistic about the prospects for one of those devices.)
Google Demos "Glass" With Crazy Skydiving Stunt →
I’ve seen a lot of goofy keynote demos, but until yesterday none had involved wingsuits, parachutes, a zeppelin (note: not the same thing as a blimp), the roof of the Moscone West convention center or Web-connected augmented-reality glasses. This Discovery News post reveals some details about how Google put together the amazing stunt in the keynote that opened its I/O 2012 developers...
The Future Of Media: Buyers Or Renters? →
An essay for the Consumer Electronics Association’s blog in which I pick up the conversation kicked up by Emily White’s “I never owned any music to begin with” post on an NPR blog—and question the wisdom of replacing media you own with DRMed bitstreams you can, in theory, access at any time, anywhere and on any device.
TiVo 'viewing error' a rights issue →
A TiVo’s “HDMI not permitted” error and a Blu-ray player’s blank green screen were just the latest demonstration of the futility and cost of DRM, and in this case the owner of an older Samsung TV is stuck with having to swap out sets of component video cables every time he wants to switch between the TiVo and the Blu-ray. The column also revisits a recent topic of my CEA...
The High Cost Of Paying By Phone →
A recap of my mixed experiences trying to buy things with Google Wallet on a smartphone with an NFC (near field communications) chip. That’s “mixed” as in “mixed between mediocre and awful.”
No Soundbar To Mass Adoption →
This week’s CEA post explains how I and many other speaker shoppers learned to like the soundbar—even though these compact systems deliver objectively worse sound than traditional, separate speaker systems.
Microsoft's Tablet: No Depth Below The Surface →
Microsoft’s new Surface tablets—one running the ARM-based Windows RT version, a heavier model running the full, Intel-compatible Windows 8 release—look sharp, but without a price, a ship date or even estimated battery life it’s hard to get too excited about them.
Cricket or Virgin: What's best iPhone deal? →
Will Cricket Wireless or Virgin Mobile USA offer a better bargain on a prepaid iPhone? For most people, Virgin’s offering is the cheaper option (hint: don’t waste your time with its unlimited-calling plan), but Cricket’s has one advantage that hasn’t been noted much in recent coverage.
TPS Report: The Election’s Missing Tech-Policy... →
A recap of the discussions I heard and participated in at last week’s Tech Policy Summit—and which I fear won’t be continued during this election season.
Apple's WWDC News: iOS Hits The Road →
For all of the attention paid for Apple dumping its Google-powered Maps app, I don’t think that’s the most important news in its WWDC announcements—or even the fourth-most-important thing.
Topsy knows what you did on Twitter last year →
This week’s USAToday.com column suggests one way to look up older tweets and explains why there aren’t more, then provides some context for an old Web trick—use Google or any other search engine instead of putting up with its broken internal-search function.
"Social Machines": Check In For Free Beer →
A look at a D.C. social-media marketing firm’s Foursquare hack: When you—better yet, you and your friends—check into devices it’s put on Foursquare, they perform actions for you.
How DVD Recording Got Paused →
In a belated correction for my past Washington Post punditry, I unpack why and how I was way too enthusiastic about the prospects for DVD recorders underneath everybody’s TV.
Rob’s May Podcast: Big-Screen Banter With Dave... →
For this month’s CEA podcast, I interviewed D.C.-area gadget blogger Dave Zatz. We talked about TV cord cutting (he thinks it’s not as big of a deal as I do), trends in flat-panel technology, cable boxes and DVRs and what his experience crossing from gadget blogging to gadget marketing and back has taught him about the business.
Off the Grid, Still In the Box: where's Cable TV... →
I went to the Cable Show, the cable industry’s obviously-named trade show, a couple of weeks ago to see if there was any hope for the cable box. Somewhat to my surprise, there is - but not if you want to get your cable reception or recording hardware from somebody besides your cable operator.
How long should you hang on to IE8? →
A USA Today reader asked that question, so I answered it. IE9’s cleaner UI, better standards compliance, upgraded security and improved Web-standards support all justify upgrading. The column goes on to suggest Google’s Chrome as a good alternative, then concludes by explaining how to use two new non-Google search engines as your default in Chrome.