The Borg finally released a SkyDrive app for Apple's iOS devices, a move they should have made long ago. Microsoft moves like molasses, and sucks at marketing so they have yet to educate the masses about their free cloud storage service. SkyDrive for iPhone is pretty basic, but works (unless one wants to open a .one with OneNote for iPhone). This cloud storage user would use SkyDrive more if it could handle 50 MB files like Dropbox, or the rest of Microsoft Office for iOS materializes.
HP announced that they're working on releasing webOS to the open source software community. Alas, it sounds like there weren't any interested buyers so backing webOS as an OSS venture for 4–5 years is a nice way to save face. If HP is serious, then webOS has the potential to become a viable mobile platform for OEM's looking for alternatives to Android. It doesn't bode well that HP doesn't plan any new webOS hardware until 2013. RIP the Palm part of HP Palm?
Today is the last day to register at "Early Bird" rates for Macworld | iWorld, the latest incarnation of the show formerly known as Macworld Expo. Gone are the days of priority registration codes for free Expo Hall passes. The Black Friday Cyber Monday two-for-one pass offer has been the best general deal seen so far...
Carrier IQ claims that their "Mobile Intelligence" monitoring software is deployed on over 141 million handsets. They also claim (PDF) that they aren't doing anything evil with their diagnostic tools. However, they didn't do themselves any favors when they sent a cease and desist letter (since retracted) to a security researcher who exposed how Carrier IQ is used on some Android devices. TechCrunch covers options for removing Carrier IQ from Android. iOS hacker, chpwn, verified Apple's claim that all is well for iPhone users.
The Borg's Chief Research and Strategy Officer, Craig Mundie, proclaimed that he isn't impressed by Apple's Siri beta. After all, Windows Phone Speech came before Siri (but after iOS Voice Control). This Microsoft skeptic does agree with Mundie that people are infatuated with Siri, and that Apple is better than Microsoft at marketing. All one needs to do is check out the aforementioned Siri, and Speech product pages for proof of the latter.
The XtremeMac InCharge Home, 10W, dual-port USB fast charger is one of few multi-port AC wall adapters that can charge an iPad or other high-capacity battery device as quickly as their original power adapters. Both USB ports on the InCharge Home deliver 10 watts of power each unlike most other after-market, multi-port chargers that either take forever to charge an iPad or aren't even powerful enough to charge its batteries—especially when more than one port is used. The InCharge's build quality is solid, and it even includes a USB-to-Apple Dock Connector charging cable (which may or may not work for syncing data). Travelers may scoff because the removable AC power blades don't fold into the device, a side-effect of being interchangeable for international socket configurations.
Velocity Micro makes made a 7" capacitive touchscreen Android tablet, the Cruz T103, that has a $100 street price. Its packaging, accessories, and build quality are impressive for $100. However, its sluggish performance is a constant reminder that the T103 is one of the least expensive 7" Android tablets generally available in the US. (The Cruz came with Android 2.0 so it's possible that installing the free 2.2 update available on Velocity Micro's site might improve the experience.) Unless cost is of utmost importance, it's probably worth spending at least an extra $100 on a tablet with a more responsive capacitive touchscreen, and a more compatible ARM CPU.
How does Apple ensure that their fairy tale relationship with Disney continues happily ever after Steve Jobs' passing? They invited Disney's CEO, Bob Iger, to join their board of directors. (Longtime Apple board member, Art Levinson, has also been named Chairman of the Board.) The Walt Disney empire is an awesome ally for Apple, as they control ABC, ESPN, A&E, UTV (hello India!), Pixar, Marvel, and almost a third of Hulu.
Firefox had its seventh birthday last week, and Mozilla celebrated by releasing Firefox 4.4 Firefox 8. The latest version does an even better job of disabling all third-party browser add-ons. Adding Twitter as a search engine provider is the other major user facing feature. (Yay...) Silent updates à la Chrome aren't slated until Firefox 10, which is about 36 weeks away assuming the rapid release cycle stays on schedule. It remains to be seen how a future Firefox will ultimately work with Windows 8 in terms of staying relevant once Internet Explorer 10 is more tightly bundled with Microsoft's desktop operating system. Mozilla also has to contend with Google—the hand that feeds them—as Chrome continues to gain ground, and its core dominates mobile.