DTNS 2441 – Pebble Steeling Time (or How I Learned to Spock 5’s)

Logo by Mustafa Anabtawi thepolarcat.comPatrick Beja joins to talk about whether Huawei, Pebble or someone else is winning the smartwatch war. And will Apple make it all pointless anyway? Plus Molly Wood pops in to sum up all you need to know about Mobile World Congress.


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Show Notes

Today’s guest: Patrick Beja, DTNS contributor


TechCrunch reports Gartner has its figures for smartphone sales out for both 2014 and Q4. Smartphones passed the billion mark last year selling 1.2 billion overall out of 1.9 billion total mobile phones sold. In Q4 Apple took over the top spot selling 74.8 million smartphones for 20.4% of the market. Samsung slipped to second dropping from 29.5% to 19.9% of the market. Lenovo maintained 3rd place rising from 5.8% to 6.6%. Huawei stayed fourth followed by Xiaomi which tripled its sales. Samsung still ended with 30.9% of the market for the year with Apple second at 15.5%.

The Verge reports Pebble announced the Pebble Time Steel, essentially a stainless steel version of the Pebble Time. It comes in three colors, steel, black and gold, for $250 on Kickstarter with a shipping date of July.  Pebble also announced the release of plans for Smartstraps that can integrate with the Pebble Time data port and add sensors for things like heartrate and GPS.

ReCode reports BlackBerry had 4 announcements at MWC. The BlackBerry Leap is a 5-inch touchscreen smartphone that will sell for $275 unlocked this spring. Also coming later this year are a new keyboard-based Blackberry, a curved screen devices with a slide-out physical keyboard and one other device. CEO John Chen noted BlackBerry finished Q4 profitable and stated revenue is stabilizing and future quarters should also be profitable.

Recode reports that cloud-storage company Box will buy Berkeley-based Subspace, shut it down April 3rd, and fold its employees into Box.  Subspace helps make sensitive data accessible on personal mobile devices in a secure fashion.

TechCrunch is reporting BitTorrent’s Free File Sharing Service, Sync has left beta. Now called Sync 2.0 the DropBox alternative will also feature a paid Pro plan starting at $40 per user a year. New feature highlights include a new UI thats more consistent between desktop and mobile versions and a new certificate security model. The free edition will be limited to 10 folders although each folder will have unlimited storage. Pro users avoid that limit and also get folder permission and ownership settings, making it easier to access folders across devices. Sync 2.0 is available now for Mac, Windows, Linux and Free BSD and mobile versions rolling out to iOS, Android, Windows Phone and Amazon Kindle. It also works on several brands of network-attached storage.

The Verge reports the HBO Go app for PS4 launched today and functions just like the PS3 version.  As with all new HBO Go apps, your cable provider has to allow you to log in.  The biggest cable provider not playing along with this version of HBO Go is Comcast.
Comcast, however, has made its HBO and Cinemax channels available today via its Xfinity TV Go app.

BizTechAfrica reports Visa and Bharti Airtel will bring mobile payments service to Kenya, Gabon, Ghana, Madagascar, Rwanda, the Seychelles and Tanzania. The service will allow users to us Airtel Mobile Money to pay in stores that accept Visa and withdraw money from ATMs. The Airtel Money Visa Card has launched in Kenya and will roll out to other markets in the first half of 2015.

CNET tried Fujistsu’s concept phone that uses infrared lasers and cameras to scan your iris and unlock your phone.  Fujistu explains that the human iris is more complex and more reliable than a fingerprint. CNET reporter Andrew Hoyle was impressed by the easy setup and use.  Fujitsu says the scanner should arrive in phones later this year.  And look for the horrible dystopian futurescape of eyeball stealing and eyeball replacement soon after that!

Reuters reports Russian lawyer Anatoly Kucherena, said Tuesday that his client Edward Snowden is working with US and German lawyers on a way to return to the US. Kucherena made the statement at a news conference for his book on Snowden.

Reuters reports an Apple spokesman actually said something to the press today. Apple plans to release a fix next week for the security flaw called “FREAK” On March 3, researchers disclosed a vulnerability in SSL/TLS that dates back to the 1990s. The FREAK attack was originally discovered by K. Bhargavan at INRIA in Paris and the mitLS team.  You can learn more at the website freakattack.com

News From You: 

Philo1927 sent us the news that Canadians have been “spocking” their currency to honor the late Leonard Nimoy. Canada’s $5 bill features the 7th Canadian Prime Minister, Sir Wilfrid Laurier, who looks enough like Mr. Spock to make the transformation easy with a few pen strokes. The bank note is also a shade of blue that’s close to Spock’s uniform. Canadians have been spocking fives since at least 2008, but picked up again when Design resource tweeted encouragement for Spocking. When word got out to Canadian William Shatner, he said via Twitter, “…the defacing of the Canadian $5 bill warms my heart.” The Bank of Canada? Not as thrilled. stating that “Writing on a bank note may interfere with the security features and reduces its lifespan,” and “markings on a note may also prevent it from being accepted in a transaction.”

Zuntax sent us The Verge version of the New York Times report that Hillary Clinton exclusively used personal email when she was the US Secretary of State from 2009-2013.

According to The Times, Clinton did not have a government email account during her term as Secretary.

US Federal law states that letters and emails written and received by federal officials are government records and, unless they contain classified or sensitive materials, should be kept where third parties can access them.

Personal email accounts are supposed to be reserved for use in emergencies.

Discussion Section Links: 



Pick of the Day: F-Lux  via Eric from Lovely Cleveland

First, Great Show. Been listen since BOL. Tom you do a wonderful Job, You ever think you might want to do it for a living?

A pick for you.. F-Lux. https://justgetflux.com/ It changes the computer’s monitor output from brightness to color output. Blue light segments are bad for sleeping and this changes the hue to remove it. The program also dims the screen at night to match your room. Being a dedicated IT guy I spend hours on my computer and at night. This helps saves my eyes.

I liked the show you did where you told everyone how you guys at DTN work. I think you should take this another step and show how other people work. I would even continue and go the next step and show how couples and households work together with technology.

Thank you to you and the other people who help. Jenny, Roger and so on.

Eric from Lovely Cleveland.

Wednesday’s guest: Jonathan Strickland