New Phone To Beat: HTC Windows Phone 8X

HTC Windows Phone 8X

HTC previewed the Windows Phone 8X and Windows Phone 8S at a press conference last week, with Steve Ballmer beaming onstage like a proud father. The phones will be available sometime in early November, along with the Nokia Lumia 920 and 820, the Samsung Ativ S, and likely others. The HTC Windows Phone 8X looks like the new high-end Windows phone to beat, with stylish lines, a high-quality camera, and very light weight. […] continued

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New From Apple: The Nice But Underwhelming iPhone 5 (And An iCloud Outage)

Apple iPhone 5 and iCloud outage

Apple dominates the news today but perhaps not the way it was hoping: an underwhelming introduction of the iPhone 5 at the press conference yesterday, and some dissatisfaction about an extended outage of iCloud mail.


First, the good news: the iPhone 5 is the best iPhone yet. It’s also kind of dull. […] continued

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Sixty Days Of Technology


Get some popcorn, keep a grip on your wallet, and settle down. The action is about to begin.

There are big changes coming up in the world of mobile devices, and the thrilling conclusion will affect your computers as well when Microsoft officially releases Windows 8.

Here’s a look at what lies ahead. […] continued

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Share Plans And Mobile Broadband Devices

Verizon & AT&T share plans - unlimited calls & text, shared data

Verizon and AT&T are both offering new share plans that allow all of the family devices to share unlimited calls, unlimited texting, and a pool of data that can be used by up to 10 devices – smartphones, tablets, and PCs. If you already have a number of devices with individual data plans, one of the share plans might save you some money, and it makes it tempting to get more broadband devices in the future. […] continued

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Smartphone Reality Check

Samsung Galaxy v. Apple iPhone

The most successful smartphone manufacturer in the world sold more than twice as many phones as its nearest competitor in the second quarter of 2012. In fact, it increased its lead last quarter, when the second-place manufacturer saw sales start to slip.

Quick! Without looking, who finished first?

It was Samsung, of course – by any measure, the world’s largest maker of smartphones. […] continued

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LastPass 2.0 Premium And Form Fill

LastPass 2.0 Premium

LastPass 2.0: An Upgraded Version Of An Essential Program
LastPass 2.0 And Secure Notes


Almost all of the important functions of LastPass are available for free, but you should consider paying $12/year for LastPass Premium. Although there are other Premium features, most of you will be paying that dollar a month for a LastPass app to run on your smartphone and iPad. […] continued

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LastPass 2.0 And Secure Notes


LastPass 2.0: An Updated Version Of An Essential Program

The upgrade to LastPass 2.0 includes a meaningful improvement in “Secure Notes” to help you use LastPass to store all of your private information, not just Internet passwords.

Secure Notes allow you to store any kind of information securely – a digital encrypted notepad. […] continued

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Android Fragmentation (aka Where’s My Ice Cream Sandwich?)

Android Fragmentation aka Where's My Ice Cream Sandwich?

“Ice Cream Sandwich” was Google’s internal name during development of the latest version of its Android operating system for phones and tablets. It’s now known more formally as Android 4.0.

You don’t have it yet. There’s an interesting story about that.

Let’s start with the competitors so you can see the contrast with Google’s fumbling efforts. […] continued

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The New York Times Explains Smartphones And E-Books

New york Times Guide To Smartphones

A few days ago the New York Times ran two articles that might be helpful to you if you feel like you’re adrift in the technology sea.

A Guide to Deciphering the Language of Smartphones covers the most important (and confusing) acronyms and concepts in the phone world. There are explanations in plain English of basic terms like “wi-fi” and “apps”, as well as some recent jargon introduced by the carriers – “tiered plan,” “CDMA vs. […] continued

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iCloud, Outlook And Exchange

Apple iCloud, Outlook and Exchange

Syncing Contacts And Appointments With Smartphones

Apple introduced the iCloud service last summer. It is a brilliant, intuitive way to move photos from iPhones to iPads and computers, and it’s the engine to transfer information about your music library so you can play music from an iTunes collection on your iPhone and iPad. […] continued

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Syncing Contacts And Appointments With Smartphones

Calendar and contacts sync

Syncing your data among your computers and mobile devices is going to be the source of much frustration and gnashing of teeth over the next couple of years. You’re going to want to set things up very carefully to avoid nasty side effects.

Your digital life is getting more complicated. iPhones and iPads and Android phones want to be helpful by syncing everything in all directions. […] continued

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The Latest Toys

Ultrabooks - HP Envy Spectre 14

New toys are coming on the market, just as promised. As you look at them, keep in mind that this is only the beginning. This is a transition year that will be filled with new products, each one looking better/cheaper/shinier than the one before it.


By summer the shelves will be full of 13” ultra-thin, ultra-lightweight notebook computers. […] continued

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3G, 4G, And Life In The Rural Slow Lane


Sonoma County is a rural county. We look at Santa Rosa and our chests swell at our bustling urban metropolis (population 167,000), but make no mistake: to cell phone carriers, we are small-fry. In 2012 that has a very precise and painful meaning for your mobile devices.

We are inundated with ads touting the wonders of 4G Internet connections. […] continued

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Walled Gardens, Part 3: Microsoft


Walled Gardens, Part 1: Apple
Walled Gardens, Part 2: Google


Set your clock ahead by eight months. It’s the holiday shopping season in late 2012.

Make two assumptions.

  • Microsoft has delivered Windows 8. In its final form, the design is solid and well accepted. The app store is lively and the cloud components work as planned.
[…] continued Read more

The New iPad And A Look At Apple’s Future

The New iPad 3 HD

Whenever Apple releases a new product there is a tidal wave of news coverage. You already know there’s a new iPad on the way. I won’t go through the details, just comment on the big picture. If you want a rundown of the specific new features, try this.

The new iPad is a minor upgrade of last year’s iPad 2. […] continued

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