Month: December 2013

Google’s Chromebooks Have Hit Their Stride

TechCrunch

It looks like Microsoft was right to worry about Google’s Chromebook project. According to the latest numbers from NPD, Chromebooks accounted for 21 percent of all laptop sales and almost 10 percent of all computer sales to businesses in 2013. That’s up from virtually nothing in the year before. Given that Apple is irrelevant in commercial channel sales (it commanded a whopping 1.8 percent of sales), Chromebook’s increased share is coming at the cost of Windows.

A few years ago, Chromebooks were a bit of a laughing stock. They were underperforming single-purpose laptops that weren’t even good at the only thing they could do (that is, surf the web). Nobody really warmed up to them, despite their low price. Early sales were more than disappointing, and even Google’s few hardware partners looked like they were only doing this as a way to court Google’s favor. The whole project…

View original post 337 more words

Uber, LeCab And Others Now Have To Wait 15 Minutes Before Picking You Up In France

I have been struggling to decide whether or not the Chromebook has a place in my electronics ecosystem… It seems many have chose this route the past year. Here is a reblog of the numbers in 2013.

TechCrunch

At first, it was just an idea, but this bill is now very real — urban transportation services like Uber and LeCab will now have to wait 15 minutes in France before letting a customer in the car. Back in October, the French government mentioned this piece of legislation as these new services would hurt traditional cab drivers. But nothing was set in stone until the AFP spotted the new bill today — and this news comes as a surprise.

In France, you have to pay a hefty price to get your taxi license. As a payback, the taxi industry is very regulated in this country, and drivers can expect to get a healthy influx of clients.

Yet, when the young and fearless startups appeared, many taxi drivers protested against LeCab, Chauffeur-privé, SnapCar, Allocab, Voitures Jaunes and Uber. While the French law calls these companies “VTC” services (car services), taxi…

View original post 438 more words

2014 Tablet or Bust

image

This coming year I will be saving up money, since I am quite worried about geopolitical happenings. I feel that the powers that be have decided to reset the system, because the West, and particularly the USA, cannot afford it’s debt. Therefore I am embarking on a modest plan to save enough to pay rent, electric, and internet for two months should my income become imperiled, or the dollar losses value, and expenses rise.

Nevertheless, I have a few electronics purchases I have been meaning to make, and have to pare these down to fit my new budget. Essential function is the watchword, which leaves either the laptop or the tablet as the device to upgrade.

The laptop I currently have is a Toshiba Satellite P775D-7360, and the tablet is a Nexus 7 2013 32Gb. While both function well enough, they are also budget devices, and I am looking to combine the functionality of both into a single device. I have been toying with the idea of purchasing a Surface 2 Pro 8 GB RAM 256 GB SSD, but the cost is prohibitive: Once one spends 1,300 dollars, plus tax, then one has to purchase a keyboard for over 130 dollars to have laptop capabilities. The price is too high, I’m afraid, and I would by necessity need insurance, raising the cost again. So… Time to look for alternatives in productivity.

Next choice, the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014, which is my current favorite. Stylus input, 10 inch display with high resolution, light, and plenty of storage options, plus up to 64 GB SD card storage. The tablet has palm rejection, and Samsung has truly worked at an extensive library of provided apps, that ensure the stylus has functionality. The downside is that the screen is only 10 inches diagonal, making this choice less of a laptop replacement, and more of a tablet replacement. If the rumored 12 inch Note materializes, however, problem solved.

The third option is to move back to laptop computing, which will not happen until I have adequate pain management for my back. I hope the 12 inch Note rumor is real, I would give up World of Warcraft for a chance to replace desktop, laptop, and 7 inch tablet for a unified solution. With the Chromecast slowly starting to show its muscle, a possible screen mirroring function from a Samsung Note 12 inch tablet would add to media consumption, and possibly productivity, plus reduce the need for a large computer monitor.

My only misgivings are processor power and screen size, even at 12 inches. If I have to go for 10 inches, the current laptop will be in my future, and the current one I have has also been a royal pain, so in 2014 I really hope to be tablet centric at last, finally getting rid of my hellish PC experience. To say that PCs are temperamental is an understatement, and now that I can finally remove them in favor of a lightweight, future proof experience, I will certainly do so.