lalit's blog

ARM to Show Android Running Prototype at Mobile World Congress Expo

Submitted by lalit on February 7, 2008 - 8:32pm.

ARM the number one mobile processor manufacturer will be the first company to show off a working device based on Google’s Android platform. ARM will show the prototype using one of its own processors at its booth for the Mobile World Congress Expo in Barcelona. Android platform has never been officially demonstrated by any of the companies partnering with Google on the Android platform. Android is an open platform, encouraging both handset makers and programmers to rewrite even major aspects of phone’s code to add or change applications. From what Google has shown when it introduced the platform and on Android’s website, the UI looks inspired by Apple’s iPhone, but Google says that all aspects of the platform including UI can be changed by the handset makers. So it will be interesting to see what ARM shows at its booth next week.

Rumor: Apple’s Event in Last Week of February

Submitted by lalit on February 7, 2008 - 7:59pm.

TUAW is reporting that high-end video production firm MIRA Mobile is rumored to be appointing personnel for a yet to be announced Apple event taking place by end of this month. Macrumors and Appleinsider have also posted that they have heard rumble about the upcoming event. Though all three websites are saying that the rumor is highly unconfirmed. The possibility of Apple having an event by end of this month is not totally out of the blue because Apple has already confirmed that it will release the iPhone SDK by end of February and there are indications of an impending MacBook Pro update also. Apple is very secretive about its events and product releases so lets wait and see if the rumors come true.

MacBook Air – Is the $1300 Upgrade to 1.8GHz and SSD Worth it?

Submitted by lalit on February 6, 2008 - 11:00pm.

Apple has started to ship the higher-end Air that comes with 1.8GHz Core 2 Duo processor and 64GB SSD in place of traditional 80GB hard drive. But to get these options you will have to pay $1300 more then the base price of $1799. There is no other difference in both the models so performance can be the only thing that can justify the price difference. Ars Technica run some benchmarks to see how much of a difference the two options make. The start up time was 12 seconds faster than the HDD model Macbook Air. Ars Technica ran Xbench, Cinebench and three other applications benchmarks. Overall the SSD model slightly outperformed the HDD model. But most of these results were inline with difference in clock speed of the two models. The battery life was also not improved by much, even though the SSD option should in theory increase the battery life by 20%. The SSD model did perform better in tasks that required lot of disk activity compared to HDD option. Now the big question is, is it worth spending $1300, well I would say no because the overall performance gain is less then 15% and that doesn’t justifies the $1300 price increase. SSD cost is coming down exponentially and by the end of 2008 we will have 128GB SSD for less then $250. So if you want a computer with SSD for better performance I would suggest waiting till end of 2008.

SanDisk Unveils 43nm Flash and New Type of Flash that Stores 3 Bits per Cell

Submitted by lalit on February 6, 2008 - 9:12pm.

SanDisk today announced at the ISSCC that it has produced the first 43-nanometer NAND flash, this will double the storage in the same amount of space. The 16-gigabit (2GB) chips are shipping now and the 32-gigabit (4GB) chips will ship in second half of the year. SanDisk also announced the development of a new type of NAND flash memory that can store 3 bits per cell that will provide 20% more usable space than a multi-level cell. The write speed of the new flash chip will be 8MB per second same as the present NAND flash chips. SanDisk has partnered with Toshiba in development of both the technologies and both the technologies should start appearing in devices by second half of 2008.

AT&T Announces 3G Expansion Plans for 2008

Submitted by lalit on February 6, 2008 - 2:07pm.

AT&T today announced plans to expand its 3G coverage into more than 80 new cities in 2008. This will bring their total 3G coverage to more than 350 cities. AT&T will also upgrade their present 3G network to HSUPA, which will improve their 3G network speed. The adoption of HSUPA will also make AT&T the only US network to fully adopt HSPA standard. AT&T also said that it’s looking towards the future and will establish a clear path to a 4G network deployment. Though AT&T has not provided any timeline for 4G implementation, but the fact that some US carrier is already talking about 4G is a good sign.

Apple Took 28% Share of US Smart Phone Market and is 3rd in Worldwide Market Share

Submitted by lalit on February 6, 2008 - 1:03pm.

Last month Apple’s CEO Steve job announced at Macworld that iPhone has captured 19% of US Smart-phone market in 3rd quarter of 2007, which was its first full quarter on sale. The latest market data from analyst firm Canalys estimates that Apple took 28% share of US smart phone market in 4th quarter of 2007. Apple was second in US market share data behind RIM’s 41% and ahead of 3rd placed Palm’s 9%. There was a 9% increase in iPhone’s US market share over previous quarter. Quarterly sales of Apple’s iPhone is now ahead of all Windows Mobile device vendors combined, whose share was 21% in the quarter according to Canalys. The biggest surprise in the data provided by canalys was that Apple was 3rd in worldwide market share. Apple is officially selling its iPhone in just four countries (US, UK, France and Germany), plus Apple has yet not officially shipped iPhone in Asia Pacific region, which was the biggest market for smart phones in 2007. In coming months, with increase in number of countries where Apple officially ships the iPhone there will be definite rise in market share of iPhone. You can read the complete market share report at Canalys.

Apple Adds 16GB iPhone and 32GB iPod Touch, Wait Till Summer to Buy The iPhone

Submitted by lalit on February 5, 2008 - 1:30pm.

Apple today announced addition of new iPhone and iPod Touch models, which will have double the memory. The 16GB iPhone and the 32GB iPod Touch will both cost $499. Both iPhone and iPod Touch will include the latest software enhancements announced last month including the ability to automatically find your location using the new Maps applications; create Web Clips; customize your home screen and rental movies from iTunes. Greg Joswiak, Apple’s vice president of Worldwide iPod and iPhone product Marketing said “ Now people can enjoy even more of their music, photos and videos on the most revolutionary mobile phone and best Wi-Fi mobile device in the world.” If you have not bought the iPhone till now I would suggest you to wait till summer, as Apple will definitely release the new 3G-iPhone model. The addition of the new models is an indication that Apple doesn’t want iPhone sales to fall before the release of the new 3G iPhone.

Intel Provides Details on New Silverthorne and Itanium Processor

Submitted by lalit on February 4, 2008 - 8:23pm.

Intel has revealed details about its new lower power Silverthorne processor that should be released by second half of 2008. The Silverthorne is made using 45 nanometer high-k metal gate and is a low-power processor designed for ultra-mobile and mobile Internet devices. The performance of the processor is comparable to Pentium M chips but the processor will consume only between 0.5 and 2 watts power. Intel plans to make Silverthorne that scale up to 2.0Ghz. Intel said that Silverthorne is fully compatible with the Core 2 Duo instruction set, meaning applications written for Core 2 Duo will run on it. This processor most probably will not end up in mobile phones as most mobile phone processors consume below 1watts power. It can be very useful in UMPC like devices, as it will have better performance then comparable processors. Intel also provided details about Tukwila, its next generation of 64-bit Itanium processors. The new processor will be released by end of 2008 and will have quad-core design that doubles the performance. The biggest news about this new processor is that it comes with more then 2 billion transistors, it’s the first processor to cross 2 billion mark. The Tukwila architecture will include 30MB of cache and use QuickPath Interconnect. The architecture is different from Intel’s x86 architecture and is designed to support data intensive applications.

Sony to Update 80GB PS3 to 120GB and Release a Slim PS3 by Fall 2008

Submitted by lalit on February 4, 2008 - 7:40pm.

Sales of PS3 have been on rise since the price cut in November 2007 and now the sales will rise even more since Blu-ray is emerging winner in the HD format war. Plus Sony is doing everything in its power to keep the PS3 interesting. Engadget has reported that GameStop has practically confirmed the new PS3 SKU; the 80GB console will be replaced with a 120GB console with Dual Shock 3 controller. T3 has posted a rumor that Sony will release an all-new PS3 that is slimmer and lighter. According to T3 the specs will remain same as the present machine but will have a bigger Hard-drive (160GB). It is believed that we will see this new PS3 by fall.

Future of Operating System’s Ubuntu 8.04 Alpha 4 Released

Submitted by lalit on February 2, 2008 - 4:13pm.

To get an idea about how the 90% of computers will look or work in future, you should look at the present development in Linux and Mac operating systems. It is a known fact that the latest development in networking, system architecture, and core features of the OS are first added to Linux or Mac. Ubuntu 8.04 alpha 4 that was officially released and is now available for testing is no different. Few of the important features that have been added to the new Ubuntu 8.04 are PulseAudio, GIO, GVFS, PolicyKit and P2P implementation with-in the core OS. PulseAudio will make it possible to independently control the volume of individual applications, support moving audio streams between devices on the fly, and output audio on multiple devices simultaneously. GVFS is a virtual file system mechanism that uses the D-Bus interprocess communication protocol to coordinate between various processes of file operations. PolicyKit gives higher level of security and also gives administrators more flexible control over what operations are accessible to individual users. Linux was the first OS to implement BitTorrent P2P technology in the OS and now in 8.04 Transmission, a cross platform BitTorrent client has been added. Use of P2P in legal file transfer can increase transfer speed and decrease server load. The impressive use of new technology in Ubuntu 8.04 alpha 4 is good for everyone as very soon, say in 3 or 4 years we will see these technologies in Windows.