Nerval's Lobster writes "Freshly minted Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer is promising the company's U.S. employees a new smartphone of their choice. There's just one catch: it can't be a BlackBerry. According to Business Insider, which posted significant portions of Mayer's memo, employees will have a choice of the Samsung Galaxy S3, HTC One X, HTC EVO 4G LTE, Nokia Lumia 920, or the upcoming iPhone 5. 'We'd like our employees to have devices similar to our users, so we can think and work as the majority of our users do,' she wrote, adding that Yahoo will shift away from BlackBerry as its corporate device of choice. Somewhere up in Waterloo, at least one Research In Motion executive could be screaming in frustration over this development. Not because Yahoo is a bellwether for corporate smartphone use; its U.S. employees shifting to an iOS, Windows Phone or Android device won't automatically drive other major companies will follow suit. But as a symbol of RIM's current issues, it's difficult to find a better one than a high-profile technology company dumping its collective BlackBerry stock in favor of pretty much any other platform."
Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive
TheBoat writes "Apple announced on Monday that iPhone 5 preorders topped 2 million units in the smartphone's first 24 hours of pre-sale availability. That figure doubles Apple's first-day iPhone 4S sales last year, making the iPhone 5 Apple's fastest-selling smartphone ever. 'iPhone 5 pre-orders have shattered the previous record held by iPhone 4S and the customer response to iPhone 5 has been phenomenal,' Apple marketing boss Philip Schiller said."
First time accepted submitter nastav writes "Now that I'm eagerly awaiting the delivery of my new shiny iPhone 5, I'm faced with a dilemma — SquareTrade, Applecare Plus, or some other insurance option? I have used SquareTrade in the past for my iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 (I skipped iPhone 4S). It provided Accidental Damage Handling (ADH) for the iPhone before Apple introduced its own version of ADH. I've had the opportunity to file claims with SquareTrade multiple times, and they handled it quickly and professionally each time. Now that there is a product from Apple itself, I'm not sure which one to get. They are priced similarly (~$100 for a two-year plan, $50 deductible for each ADH incident) Apple limits the number of ADH claims to two, whereas SquareTrade (AFAIK) limits the number of claims to the 'value of the product,' which translates to approx. 600 USD in coverage (or about 4 ADH claims). I've tried reading many comparison articles on the internet without definitive answers. I'm hoping that the tech-savvy folks on Slashdot would help out with a discussion on pros and cons of each, and perhaps add other options into the mix."
EGSonikku writes "The iPhone 5 has been benchmarked using the GeekBench tool. According to the results, Apple's claim of 2x higher performance over the iPhone 4S seems accurate. The results show the iPhone 5's A6 CPU is dual core and clocked at 1.2GHz, and is paired with 1GB of RAM. Despite the fact that the Samsung Galaxy S3 has a quad core CPU at 1.4GHz, and twice as much RAM, it seems the iPhone 5 is faster than the S3, or any other Android handset." Meanwhile, Samsung has launched a marketing campaign that compares some of the hardware specs and features between the new iPhone 5 and the GS3.
An anonymous reader writes "A preliminary ruling from the International Trade Commission found that Apple did not violate four of Samsung's patents in the design of the iPhone. 'The patents in the complaint are related to 3G wireless technology, the format of data packets for high-speed transmission, and integrating functions like web surfing with mobile phone functions.' The complaint was filed by Samsung in 2011, and a final confirmation is due next January. Apple has similar claims against Samsung awaiting ITC judgment; the preliminary ruling is expected in mid-October."
WebMink writes "Back in 2009, Apple signed an agreement aimed at reducing electronic waste resulting from mobile phone accessories. But this week's launch of the iPhone 5 shows them reneging on that commitment. Instead of including a micro-USB connector on the iPhone, as they agreed to do along with the rest of the phone industry, they created yet another proprietary connector. At a stroke, they have junked earlier iPhone accessories, forced a new industry in Apple-only accessories to arise and broken their promise to the EC. It's a huge missed opportunity both for their customers and for the environment."
puddingebola sends word of a German court decision yesterday which found that Google's Motorola Mobility must recall all of its Android tablets and phones that infringe on Apple's patent for "rubber-band" scrolling. From the Guardian: "The dramatic decision, the latest in an escalating war between Apple and the smartphone and set-top box company MMI, follows earlier cases in which Apple had to disable automatic "push" delivery of email to its iPhone and iPads after MMI won a separate patent fight in Germany. The recall will not take effect immediately because Apple will have to request a ban on specific products and provide a €25m (£20m) bond, while MMI can appeal. However, the court indicated that it was unlikely that an appeal against the validity of the patent would succeed. MMI, with Google's backing, is expected to continue the appeal. The court also ruled that MMI owed Apple damages for past infringement."
jfruh writes "Every time a company rolls out a new version of a product, it extols how much better it is than the previous version. Thus, Apple spent a part of its iPhone 5 rollout touting the staying power of the latest version of its battery. But have iPhone batteries really seen improvement since the original came out in '07? Kevin Purdy crunches the numbers and concludes that, while the 5's battery beats the 4S's, we still haven't returned to the capabilities of the original phone."
dgharmon writes "'I hate it,' Wozniak told Bloomberg in Shanghai today, referring to the patent battle. He thinks the ruling will be overruled. Samsung will of course appeal, and this case will go back and forth for months still, but Wozniak just wishes everyone could get along. 'I don’t think the decision of California will hold. And I don’t agree with it — very small things I don’t really call that innovative. I wish everybody would just agree to exchange all the patents and everybody can build the best forms they want to use everybody’s technologies,' he said."
dell623 writes "While the fragmentation issues in iOS are nowhere near as bad as Android, it can no longer be considered non existent. I have prepared a chart showing which features will be available on which device. While some restrictions are the result of hardware limitations, it is clear that Apple has deliberately chosen to limit some previous generation devices, and figuring this out isn't always straightforward if you're not buying the latest iPad or iPhone."
Today Phil Schiller took to the stage at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, where he announced the long-expected iPhone 5. The casing is made entirely of glass and aluminum, and it's 7.6mm thick, which is 18% thinner than the iPhone 4S. It weighs in at 112 grams, which is 20% lighter than the 4S. Schiller confirmed that the iPhone 5 has a 4" display, with a resolution of 1136x640. It's a 16:9 aspect ratio. The screen is the same width as a 4S, but it's taller. To accommodate older apps, they either center the app or add black bars to make it look right. The new device also has LTE support. Tim Cook spoke earlier about the iPad, making some interesting claims: "Yes, we are in a post-PC world." He also claimed 68% tablet market share for the iPad, and says iPads account for 91% of tablet-based web traffic. The event is continuing, and we'll update this post as further announcements appear. A real-time liveblog is being quickly updated at Ars Technica. Update: 09/12 18:16 GMT by S : Further details below.
Barence writes "A school swapped all its staff laptops for iPads — and now wants to switch them back. 'Most staff are IT illiterate and jumped at the chance of exchanging their laptop for an iPad,' a teacher from the school told PC Pro. Now, however: 'the staff room is full of regret.' Difficulties editing old Word and PowerPoint documents, transferring work to and from the device without USB sticks, and problems with projecting the iPad's display to the classroom — bizarrely, using an Apple TV — have led to staff once again reaching for their Windows laptops."
An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt from Geek.com: "The courtroom battle between Apple and Samsung seems to be far from over, and come tomorrow Apple is in for a major headache as soon as it makes the iPhone 5 official. That's because Samsung is poised to sue the company over patents it owns relating to LTE connectivity the new smartphone is expected to use. All Samsung needs to confirm is that the iPhone 5 is shipping with 4G LTE and it can then apparently set its lawyers into action. As is typical with these patent lawsuits, Samsung will most likely seek an import ban meaning the iPhone 5 may not be able to leave its manufacturing plants and make it to the U.S. to fulfill pre-orders. If such a thing ruling was made, Apple would most likely do a deal that meant it no longer pursued Samsung product bans, and might even forget about that billion dollar payout." Samsung's not the only one hoping to gain some leverage: itwbennett writes, "Apple's iPhone 5 and iPad 3 may violate a pair of patents bought by HTC back in April 2011 that cover methods used in 4G devices for faster downloads. International Trade Commission judge Thomas Pender said it would take 'clear and convincing' evidence to renounce the U.S. patents."
pdabbadabba writes "A Florida iPhone and iPad app developer, Blue Toad, has come forward claiming that it is the source of the Apple UDIDs previously released by Anonymous. Their dataset, they say, is a 98% match for the one Anonymous hackers claim to have stolen from an FBI laptop. If so, this development would cast serious doubt on Anonymous' claims and, possibly, calm fears that this data is evidence of an ongoing FBI surveillance operation (a claim the FBI has also denied)."
itwbennett writes "Hoping to avoid a sales ban in the Netherlands, Samsung has said that Android's multitouch software doesn't work as well as Apple's. Samsung lawyer Bas Berghuis van Woortman said that while Apple's technology is a 'very nice invention,' the Android system is harder for developers to use. Arguing the bizarre counterpoint, Apple's lawyer Theo Blomme told judge Peter Blok, that the Android multitouch isn't inferior and does so infringe on Apple's patent: 'They suggest that they have a lesser solution, but that is simply not true,' said Blomme."