? All Tech Radio Episode 371
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  • In a surprising outbreak of peace in the mobile phone world, Apple and the Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC have halted legal hostilities and signed a 10-year licensing agreement. Industry sources suggested that HTC may have agreed to pay Apple between $5 (£3.15) and $20 per handset that it produces with Google's Android operating system. HTC said that the deal, which enables the company to use Apple patents on its devices, would not have a material effect on its profit-and-loss account.
  • Google has been seriously pushing the Chrome OS with the recent partnership with Samsung to offer the new Samsung Chromebook. That device lowered the price of a Chromebook to just $249. Continuing that push is the new Acer C7 Chromebook just released for a mere $199. Like the Samsung model before, Google is also offering free goodies worth more than the price tag of the Acer C7 Chromebook. The new C7 from Acer weighs in at 3.05 pounds and is only an inch thich. In that slim body is an Intel Celeron processor, 2 GB of memory, and surprising for a Chromebook -- a 320GB hard drive. The 11.6-inch display is capable of HD video, and has a quoted battery life of over 3.5 hours.
  • RIM has finally named the date: on 30 January it will launch its new BlackBerry 10 operating system, as well as showcase the first two smartphones running on it. BlackBerry 10 - and the devices that support it - are absolutley critical to RIM's future, and as such the company has been methodically laying the groundwork for the OS' launch for some time now. Already RIM has said BlackBerry 10 has achieved FIPS 140-2 certification, which means that government agencies have got the necessary security clearance to deploy smartphones running the OS as soon as it becomes available. It's also already testing BlackBerry 10 with 50 carriers and has stepped up its efforts to woo developers - recently opening a new developer centre.
  • Google Inc. (GOOG) is being pressed by U.S. Federal Trade Commission Chairman Jonathan Leibowitz to make an offer to settle the agency's antitrust investigation in the next few days or face a formal complaint, two people familiar with the situation said. Google has been engaged in discussions with the agency for about two weeks and hasn't put any remedy proposals on the table, said the people, who declined to be identified because the negotiations are private. For almost 20 months, the FTC has been probing whether Mountain View, California-based Google is abusing its dominance of the Internet and it's prepared to file a case against the operator of the world's largest search engine if the company fails to make an acceptable settlement proposal, the people said.
  • Google.com was being blocked over the past week in China. China is changing the people who run their government and during that time they didn't want Google to be operating in their country. Many complaints were filed and as of Sunday they great firewall of China has lifted the ban and allowed Google to once again operate. The fear by the communists was that people will use Google to spread anti government propaganda.
  • Microsoft Windows 8 has gotten some good grades from many security pros, but the operating system's defenses aren't invulnerable to today's malware, a BitDefender study has found. Research from security vendor BitDefender underscored recently what many Windows users already know-running a machine without antivirus can be risky. In an analysis, the firm found 15 percent of what the security firm classifies as the malware families most favored cyber-criminals this year were able to successfully run on Windows 8 with Windows Defender on. That translated into 61 of the 385 malware samples the company tested. What doe sthis mean to you? Even with thr latest operating system you still need third party anti malware (antivirus).
  • Kim Dotcom's MegaUpload replacement has finally found a new home. The Gabon government's committment to protect intellectual property caused a minor setback for Dotcom last week when it suspended the Me.ga domain . But earlier today, Dotcom tweeted that the new site is now live on the New Zealand-based domain mega.co.nz. He noted that it will be "Powered by legality and protected by the law."
  • If what we're hearing today is true, Apple may very well be changing the set-in-stone update cycle for their iPhone hardware with no less than 6 months sitting between the iPhone 5 and its follow-up device, the iPhone 5S. This next-generation device has no real details attached to it, instead with the publication Commercial Times having its sources appearing reliable to DigiTimes, a group with manufacturing news that's incorrect as often as it is accurate. Nevertheless the original source has it that the certification processes for "related parts and components" for the iPhone 5S have been spotted. This report is joined by word that Apple will begin initial production volumes of the iPhone 5S at 50,000-100,000 units, with the iPhone 5S to be released inside the first quarter of 2013. This update schedule would follow Apple's release of the 4th generation iPad, released less than a year after the iPad 3rd generation device. That broke tradition because of the Lightning port it came integrated with, or so some thought, this allowing the whole Apple mobile universe to be one in the same as far as docking goes.
  • On November 6, 2012, Microsoft announced that it would be discontinuing its Windows Live Messenger client. This news falls in line with Microsoft's acquisition of Skype -- making it the company's go-to instant-message client after the first quarter of 2013. Migrating to Skype will make video calling easier, allow you to share your screen, make group calls, integrate Facebook, and add better mobile compatibility. Looking to get a head start on merging your contact lists so you don't risk missing anyone after Messenger is retired? Just follow these quick steps: Before getting started, you'll need to download the most current version of Skype. The best way to do that is to follow this link. You may notice that Skype will automatically uninstall Messenger during this install. Remember that your contact list for Windows Live Messenger is stored on their servers, but if you're not ready to let go just yet, you'll want to abort the installation.
  • The new flagship Apple store in Palo Alto is too loud, says Apple's former head of advanced product development and worldwide marketing, Jean-Louis Gassée, in his Monday note. "The store is impressive… but it's also unpleasantly, almost unbearably noisy," he wrote after clocking the noise level at above 75 decibels in the store. That's a full 10 decibels higher than the traffic on what Gassée calls the "always busy" University Avenue. But maybe it's just the right amount of loud to get you to buy. While some don't find the Palo Alto store too loud, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration requires workers to wear hearing protection if they are exposed to 90-decibel noise for eight hours, according to The New York Times's Cara Buckley. And at 85 decibels, employers are supposed to provide hearing protection and conduct hearing tests.

email from listeners:

  • Jose from Portland asks "Will the computer deals be better now or after Black Friday?"