JD Power explains why Samsung beat Apple in its news satisfaction study

Samsung won by a score of 535 vs Apple’s 533.

The power circle chart showed Apple winning handily in four categories, including performance, ease of use, physical design and tablet features. Only one category showed a clear win for Samsung: cost. But most folks were a bit skeptical, considering that the JD Power report only weights cost as 16 percent of the overall score.

Parsons confirmed the percentage, but said that the differential between the price category scores of the iPad and the score of the Samsung tablets that were included in the survey was large enough to “more than offset” the score in the other four categories. Parsons says that the price category contributed to a full two-point difference between Apple and Samsung.

Advertising budgets over the years for a few companies

If you think Apple splurges on marketing, check out this chart.

And before you suggest that Samsung spreads its budget over a wide range of electronics, look at this chart.

Rockstar, patent-holding firm partially owned by Apple and Microsoft, sues Google and Android device makers

John Gruber posted a very good piece on the on-going patent war.

This latest lawsuit filed by Rockstar is an escalation of a patent war against Google and Android, not the start of it. Nobody looks good here — not Apple, not Microsoft, but certainly not Google either. Google started filing lawsuits based on Motorola patents long before Rockstar filed this suit. Given that, I find it hard to believe that had Google won the bidding for the rights to Nortel’s patent trove — and it bid $4.4 billion for them — it wouldn’t have filed lawsuits based on them in the same way it has with Motorola’s.

Apple and Microsoft have been slammed for this, but few articles took Google’s Motorola into consideration.

But Motorola — a wholly-owned Google subsidiary — has filed patent lawsuits against Apple all over the world. Just one month ago Apple finally put an end to an 18-month injunction that prevented iCloud users in Germany from getting push notifications for email — because of a patent lawsuit filed by Google.

Is Carl Icahn good for your company?

Some folks might think that Carl Icahn‘s plans for Apple’s cash pile is good for the company. After successfully taking Dell private, Michael Dell disagrees, though.

“It’s a big poker game to him,” says Dell. “It’s not about the customers. It’s not about the people. It’s not about changing the world. He doesn’t give a crap about any of that. He didn’t know whether we made nuclear power plants or French fries. He didn’t care.”

Forbes

Good design is timeless

Dave Brasgalla converts Ron Cobb’s “Semiotic Standard” iconography into iOS 7 icons.

The iOS 7 versions of the symbols keep both their strength and their characteristic flavour. It makes me smile to think that 35-year-old designs can suddenly feel current and even trendy again. It’s tempting to say that Cobb was ahead of his time with his Semiotic Standard, but I think the larger point here is simply that good design is timeless.

I concur.

iPhone 5s and Nokia Lumia 1020 cameras compared

Laptop Mag compared the two cameras side by side.

The iPhone 5s conclusively beat the Nokia Lumia 1020 in our photo face-off, taking seven out of 10 rounds–and tying one. Even after updating the Lumia 1020′s camera software, which reduced issues with the blue color cast on many images, colors were still more accurate on the iPhone. Apple’s device also excelled when delivering detail and contrast.

The advantage that the Lumia 1020 has is that you can recompose your shot after you take it because of the phone’s very high 41-MP resolution. Overall, though, the iPhone 5s snapped better-looking images in a wider range of conditions.

I would choose the iPhone 5s as my everyday camera simply because of the variety and quality of camera apps available on iOS.

The inside story of why Blackberry is failing

Blackberry knew what they were up against but were unable to respond to it fast enough.

Publicly, Mr. Lazaridis and Mr. Balsillie belittled the iPhone and its shortcomings, including its short battery life, weaker security and initial lack of e-mail. That earned them a reputation for being cocky and, eventually, out of touch. “That’s marketing,” Mr. Lazaridis explained. “You position your strengths against their weaknesses.”

Internally, he had a very different message. “If that thing catches on, we’re competing with a Mac, not a Nokia,” he recalled telling his staff.

Virgin America’s new in-flight safety video

Virgin America launches a catchy in-flight safety video.

Take part in the #VXSafetyDance contest on Instagram to audition for the next video.

FAA to allow airlines to expand use of personal electronics

Great news. Implementation is still up to the individual airlines so it might not be coming to your favourite airline just yet.

Passengers will eventually be able to read e-books, play games, and watch videos on their devices during all phases of flight, with very limited exceptions. Electronic items, books and magazines, must be held or put in the seat back pocket during the actual takeoff and landing roll. Cell phones should be in airplane mode or with cellular service disabled – i.e., no signal bars displayed—and cannot be used for voice communications based on FCC regulations that prohibit any airborne calls using cell phones. If your air carrier provides Wi-Fi service during flight, you may use those services. You can also continue to use short-range Bluetooth accessories, like wireless keyboards.

FAA Press release

Google Hangouts adds SMS support, still not iMessage yet

Adding SMS support is a step in the right direction, but even within the app SMS and Hangouts messages are separated from each other, instead of being integrated into the same stream.

Hangouts for Android now supports location sharing and SMS. This way you can send a map of your current location (vs. finding and typing an address), and you can send and receive SMS (vs. switching between apps). Animated GIFs also play inline.
Google

Funnily enough, Facebook just removed SMS support from its Facebook Messenger app.