Monday, 23 December 2013

SYNAPSE CIRCUIT: 2013: A REVIEW. PART FOUR: THE RISE AND RISE OF GOOGLE.

 Give us a break! Give us a 64bit KitKat! 
Chromecast... I want one!!!!!
Here's something I made earlier... Too bad it's available in the US only!
SYNAPSE CIRCUIT:
2013: A REVIEW.
#Technology2013 #Google #Android #KitKat #Nexus72013 #Nexus5 #Motorola #MotoX #MotoG #Chrome #Chromecast

Good late afternoon / evening, Synapse Circuit Readers! What’s happening with you? Right now I am happy to be sitting in the warmth of my home office while a storm continues to rage outside! So much for a white Christmas! Well, I hope tomorrow will see the storm go away as there is one more day of Christmas shopping to do and contend with!

Here I am, again, looking at what I see as the highs and lows of 2013’s world of Tech!

PART FOUR: THE RISE AND RISE OF GOOGLE.

THE BIGGEST & BEST TECH HOUSE 2013: Google
THE SECOND BEST HIGH-END HANDSET: Nexus 5
THE BEST 7” TABLET: Nexus 7 2013
THE BEST MIDRANGE BUDGET HANDSET: Moto G
BACK FROM THE BRINK: Motorola
While Samsung are actively putting out a mass of handsets and tablets and running away with the Android ball (out of all the other manufacturers on the playing field) it is all down to Google and their awesome Android operating system. In a nutshell, Google has given all manufacturers a blank cheque and they seem to be doing remarkably well!

MOVED
Yes, I was moved by Larry Page’s speech that he gave at the i / O conference of this year. I love the fact that he’s not into creating rivals but unity through technology! And what’s more is that Google are doing their best to provide that bridge across the different platforms. Google is like the Karate Kid to the Apple and Microsoft rivalries that will take very opportunity to let slip a verbal attack. It’s one of the reasons I find it painful to watch an Apple product launch, “Pointless smarmy attack, pointless smarmy attack, pointless smarmy attack... Oooh, we’ve opened a new shop somewhere in the world and it’s fantastic... Smarm, smarm, smarm...” That’s boring to me!

However, it is Google who are doing the most interesting things with technology and part of that technology is on your handset alone! Maps, Gmail, Translate, Search, Now, Drive, YouTube and Chrome to name a few (on the top of my head). Then we get to the Chrome browser and operating system and the many apps available for it that could potentially lead people away from both Apple and Microsoft computers and software. Then we get to the driverless vehicles and the promising Glass wearable computer technology! Where will it end? You may know that Google has recently acquired Boston Dynamics and 7 other robotics companies! I can only imagine that Google is planning on delivering domestic robots as promised to us by many o’ Sci-Fi movies amongst other uses for robotics! A flash of the Will Smith movie, iRobot came to mind... Lol! Another thing that comes to mind is the issue of Singularity when man becomes machine – or something like that... Then you see folk that claim the idea of Singularity is the work of the Devil and the platform they use to spread that gospel is YouTube! Lol! I dunno... <shakes head>

ANDROID
We are seeing the Android operating system go strength to strength with the release of KitKat, 4.4! I think many, many mobile phone users in general do not stop to think about the role of Android in the mobile devices world. Android drives a myriad of handsets and tablets that come in different sizes which is a phenomenal achievement. Perhaps the consumer doesn’t look into the phenomena aspect and is more interested in having a choice. However, many budget handsets have been mis-sold by unscrupulous retailers... We’ll get to the budget Android handset in a bit.

Then there’s the issue of fragmentation... What fragmentation? A majority of consumers do not know or care regarding the issue of fragmentation. What most people want to do on their phones is to connect with their social networks, make free texts, voice and video calls. Consumers are hardly going to notice the differences between Gingerbread and KitKat – especially when they are wrapped up in another manufacturer user interface. Perhaps KitKit will go see many devices united under this one Android operating system. On the other hand fragmentation shouldn’t be an issue in the future simply because handsets have grown to a level of ubiquity whereby it squeezes out the old handsets of bygone years! This brings me to...

THE BUDGET ANDROID HANDSET
It is purely down to Android why there is a budget market for handsets. I can’t imagine a world whereby the only choice is the iPhone or the dire Windows phone! And thank God that I don’t have to imagine such a world where I am forced to buy an over expensive iPhone or a half-baked Windows handset.

In the not too distant past there were some very cheap Android handsets on the market that costs anywhere from £50 to £99! They looked promising and we were told that apps could be saved on a microSD card when we paused to consider the lack of memory and storage on these cheap phones. We spent our money on these handsets in order not to be left out with the hordes of people busting out their iPhones, Samsungs and HTCs or to replace a broken handset. In a nutshell these budget handsets were a load of horsepoop! Only a select few apps were able to run from the microSD card and not before downloading an app to do that! Then there was an issue of speed... Forget it!

Thankfully, Google Motorola gave us the Moto G! The Moto G came out just in time to save the world from these awful budget handsets that gave people the wrong impression of Android. The faith in Android, budget Android, has been restored. Amen! Because of Google Motorola there will be more decent budget handsets to be had next year! Watch out!

Of course, Google and LG brought us the Nexus 5 for a very reasonable price. The Nexus 5 is not quite Galaxy S4, One or G2, but it is a great budget alternative for those who want a reasonably powerful handset at a good price.

Both the Moto G and Nexus 5 flew out of the mobile retail outlets here in the UK – specifically London!

WHAT A TURNAROUND
Yes, indeed what a turnaround for Motorola – Google Motorola! The Moto X was slightly disappointing simply because the teaser advertising made it seem as though consumers would be able to customize the innards i.e. processor, memory, etc. However, the good thing about the Moto X is that it is manufactured in the USA and I am sure that it helped to provide jobs for citizens in this wake of an uncertain economy. Another good thing is, of course, a degree of outer customization. I am sure that the Moto X sold well – especially with the touch free command feature!

Well, you could hardly say that Motorola were doing badly; they had a good hit with the RAZRi and HD but such handsets were not quite on par with the premium beasts from Samsung, HTC, LG, Sony and so on. I think the adoring handset fans are looking for the Motorola equivalent of let’s say the Galaxy S4 and when they don’t get it they have ruled Motorola out of the big league so to speak. It begs the question: What does 2014 hold for Google Motorola? Will we see cheaper more powerful handsets? Will we see a flagship decked out with the largest cores, RAM and storage? Will they do a phablet? We’ll just have to wait and see!

IN CHROME WE TRUST
Now just look at what is happening with Google Chrome! The web browser keeps getting better now with search via voice and the mobile browser offers the best Internet surfing solution – more so than the standard web browser that comes with handsets these days!

Then there’s the Chrome OpSys that has seen the release of a new Chromebook from Acer and the decked out Chromebook Pixel! Wow! Who wouldn’t want a Chromebook Pixel?

And the surprise hit for Google has not only been the second generation Nexus 7 but the Chromecast dongle that allows you to stream audio / video to a connected device such as a HDMI compatible TV / Monitor! It costs a mere $35! I am just waiting for it to come to the UK or I might just order one from the States!

ROLL ON GOOGLE
I can see that the scope for Google is vast come 2014! What I envisage for 2014 is that Android goes 64bit; we’ll see more of a range of wearable devices; dual Android and Chrome tablets and PCs and possibly cost effective exoskeletons for those that have problems with mobility. The cost effective exoskeleton would certainly come in handy for people that lift heavy products as part of their jobs and / or for lifting patients in a hospital / hospice. Bring it on!

From Motorola I see that there will be a range of mobile devices that can be put together in a Lego-like manner possibly towards the end of 2014!

Well, I hope you have enjoyed this instalment of 2013 in review!

HAPPY CHRISTMAS FROM SYNAPSE CIRCUIT

Take good care!


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