While there are just four mobile phone network operators in Australia (you all know about Telstra, Optus and Vodafone but Pivotel is there as well, in remote areas), there are stacks of MVNOs who sell services on top of the networks built by the other operators. Moose Mobile is one of those MVNOs. And they've just signed a five-year deal to resell Optus' 4G services on top of their business selling refurbished handsets.
The Raspberry Pi is the a very versatile computer that has been embraced by hobbyists everywhere. It's been used to create gaming consoles, home automation systems, media player and all sorts of other applications. Google has teamed up Raspberry Pi to create a kit that brings together a Voice Hardware Accessory on Top board with a microphone and speaker so you can create your own Alexa alternative.
Like many business people, I've not bothered installing a landline phone. Aside from the cost, it's a pain to have phones tied to specific locations and mobile phones do the job nicely. But, although today's smartphones all boast a hands free mode, the speaker and microphone quality isn't always up to par - particularly where you have a couple of people on the line. The Jabra Speak 710 aims to fix that but putting together a high quality speaker and microphone package that looks good, is easy to use and sounds great.
Team messaging application Slack is upping the ante in the battle of the collaboration platforms. With Slack, HipChat and Microsoft Teams all battling it out to master the collaboration game, Slack has added the ability to time limit guest access to chats and adding some extra information so you know more about guests.
The Surface Laptop, that was announced by Microsoft yesterday, looks to be a nice computer. The spec is solid and, if the current family of Surface devices is anything to go by, the build will be of a high quality. But unlike almost every other computer market on the planet today, they have omitted USB-C ports. Why have they done that?
Remember the good old days? You could walk into the local milk-bar and grab a Coke from the fridge. But then came Diet Coke, Coke Zero, Coke with Vanilla, Coke with Ginger, Diet Coke with Lemon, Coke Life and a bunch of other variants. Now, when I order a Coke I’m faced with an overwhelming array of choices.
Clearly, the market thinks so as well. Coke has announced the withdrawal of Coke Life from the shelves. Although they are replacing it with "Coke with Stevia” it highlights what can happen when you over-diversify your product range.
Earlier today, Microsoft announced a new Windows PC. Unlike the previous members of the Surface family, the Surface Laptop doesn’t have a detachable keyboard. And it also lacks Windows 10 Home or Windows 10 Pro. Instead, it ships with a cutback version of Windows dubbed Windows 10 S. That means a Surface laptop will be limited to only running apps available through the Windows Store and not desktop apps. What makes this confusing is that an upgrade to Windows 10 Pro is free - for a limited time at least.
When the Apple Watch was released a couple of years ago, it signalled a further step Apple was taking to ingratiate themselves into every aspect of our increasingly digital lifestyle and workplace. The closest parallel I can think of is the iPad. When it was released many, including me, questioned Apple's strategy as it looked a lot like a solution looking for a problem to solve. But it spawned a massive market that was followed by Android devices and, ultimately, the Microsoft Surface and a new way to think about mobile computing. The Apple Watch seemed to be a similar play but it's not working out the same way.
As part of my quest to find the prefect Windows 10 tablet, I've had a chance to play with some Windows 10 features I've not really delved into previously. One of those is Windows Hello. If supported on your device, you'll find Windows Hello in Widows Settings by clicking or tapping on Accounts and then choosing Sign-in options.
While many of the jobs done by system admins are now automated or simplified through GUIs, wizards and other graphical tools, there are times when you still need to get down and dirty, entering information on a command line. If nothing else, it’s often faster to type a string of commands and options that shuffle through a bunch of screens, hitting a “next” button. PuTTY has been an essential tool of admins for years. And it’s just been upgraded to Version 0.69. At this rate, it could reach version 1.0 by the time I’m retired.
Cloud-based ERP software company NetSuite has just finished their annual user and partner event, SuiteWorld. This year's event is significant as it's the first one after the company's acquisition by Oracle last year. That US$9.2B purchase is Oracle's largest ever acquisition and will drive some changes in how NetSuite operates.
The smartphone business is having a Mark Twain moment, with rumours of its death, or at least failing health, greatly exaggerated according to data reeleased by IDC.
Although Microsoft's efforts to break into the smartphone market have not gone to plan, they are still pushing out updates for the platform. MSPowerUser reports that even though many devices are no longer eligible for feature updates, they can get other cumulative updates.
Yesterday, we ran a story discussing how to choose business software. In the comments kal0psia asked "Are there any plans to build a PSA in the actual Suite platform rather than integrating into OpenAir? Last time I checked this still wasn't the case". I followed this up with NetSuite and have an answer.
I'm currently attending SuiteWorld. This is the annual customer event for cloud-based ERP software maker NetSuite (which was acquired by Oracle late last year). During the opening keynote today, given by Executive Vice President of Oracle + NetSuite Jim McGeever, it was announced that a new piece of the NetSuite product pie would become available this June. The new HR module, SuitePeople, brings HR functions into the suite. But this had me thinking. Is a single software solution that brings everything to you in one neat package the way to go? Or should you buy best-of-breed apps for each function and integrate them?
It seems the old curse "may you live in interesting times" has come true. We now live in a world where "fake news" and "alternative facts" are part of our vernacular and something we must guard against. But one of the challenges of the online world is that misinformation can be spread quickly and become "fact" before there's a chance to verify it. Google is having a crack at verifying sources and Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales is as well.