TAIPEI — At Intel’s keynote address for Computex 2015 here, Kirk Skaugen, the chip maker’s senior vice president and general manager of the Client Computing Group, announced that Thunderbolt 3 is set to unify ports with the latest USB Type-C standard.
When built into a computer, the new Thunderbolt 3 acts as a “superset” host for USB 3.1 (at full 10Gbps speed), DisplayPort 1.2, PCI Express Gen 3 and its own Thunderbolt standard.
Although many of them offer freebie versions, those are usually limited to a desktop client, with no syncing with the Web or mobile apps. And, trust me, syncing is something you really want. I can’t tell you how often I end up needing a password or other personal info when I’m out and about.
Typically you have to pay $20 to $40 per year for the privilege, but there’s an often-overlooked gem that will cost you nothing:Norton Identity Safe. Though once part of Norton’s paid security-suite offerings, this password manager is now a standalone product — and a free one at that.
Not everyone likes speaking commands into their phone, but for those who do, Microsoft’s new Cortana voice assistant for Windows Phone 8.1 is exactly the viable competitor to Apple’s Siri and Google Now that the company needs to keep its Windows Phone OS current.
Like Siri and, to a lesser extent, Google’s voice actions, Cortana is a personable (or vaguely person-like) voice-activated system for taking dictation, looking things up, and opening apps. (Yes, Halo fans — Cortana is named for Master Chief’s AI companion, and even voiced by the same talent: actress Jen Taylor.) Even in its early beta stage, Cortana mostly keeps pace with its rivals, and introduces one or two minor innovations that Apple and Google can learn from.
While Cortana isn’t revolutionizing the field of voice assistants, it does give Windows phones a sorely-needed boost in the voice option department — the previous generation, fueled by TellMe, was limited and impersonal. Out of all the additions to the Windows Phone 8.1, it’s Cortana that pulls the most weight keeping the Windows Phone in the OS game.
HBO Go has long been viewed as a trailblazer in traditional television’s move to offer premium video online, but Sunday night it got tripped up just as badly as the other guys.
A week after ABC and Aereo’s separate live streams of the Oscars were plagued by buffering and errors, demand for the finale of HBO’s “True Detective” series grew so heavy that HBO Go began to fail.
It’s been a busy week here in Barcelona, Spain, at Mobile World Congress, dear readers. Enough phones and tablets and other display-having devices were launched over the past five days to make even the most gadget-hungry enthusiast feel a bit overwhelmed. And, too, came a zillion wearables of various shapes and sizes, tracking all manner of biometrics.
So many devices that I could well and truly spend the entirety of this week’s entry giving you the full rundown. But that’d be a shame, as you see our own Jason Jenkins has already done that for you, rounding up our favorite devices from the show in this handy list that’s just a click away. So, as he’s gone and done that… …
by Jennifer Van Grove
| July 24, 2013 4:46 PM PDT
Facebook’s “fail harder” and “think wrong” philosophies could pay off in the long run.
In its second-quarter earnings report Wednesday, Facebook revealed that, on mobile, its business is healthier and stronger than anyone could have predicted.
The social network said that it made 41 percent of its $1.6 billion second-quarter advertising revenue, or roughly $656 million, from mobile. Heading into the report, even the most bullish of analysts were only predicting that mobile would account for a third of advertising revenue. Most were about $200 million off the mark. …