Monthly Archives : February 2013

Sony Xperia Tablet Z

Sony is releasing a new Android based tablet named the Xperia Tablet Z. It was unveiled at the Mobile World Congress just recently and it will be available to purchase in May. It sounds like it packs a lot of punch considering it is the thinnest 10.1″ tablet around.

I am partial to Sony camera’s and I am pleased to see them trasfer some of that technology over to the new tablet. The front facing camera only sports a 2 megapixal lens but the rear camera has an 8. The full HD display comes standard with a 192x1200p along with Reality Display with BRAVIA Engine 2.

Something that caught my eye is the fact that they claim the tablet is waterproof. According to Sony the Z can be placed in up to a meter of water for 30 minutes and it will still be working when you pull it out.

Interested to learn more? Feel free to watch Sony’s video here. We here at BVA are excited to see this product launch and see how it does up against its competitors.

Using Windows to Back Up and Restore Exchange Data

Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 comes equiped with a plug-in so users can back up and restore your Exchange databases. For all of the tips, tricks, and how-to’s please visit Microsoft’s link here. This plug-in allows users to enable Windows Server Backup to create the Exchange-aware VSS backups. Do you still have Exchange 2010? Not to worry, they will explain the steps for the 2010 version as well.

First Twitter, now Facebook & Apple

It was just a couple of weeks ago that BVA wrote about Twitter being the latest victim of a sophisticated hacking scheme. This last week proved to be testing for some of the biggest names out there, Facebook and Apple.

Facebook had issues on Friday after some employees went to a mobile developer’s website which ended up being compromised. They said they found an employee’s laptop that contained a malicious file after they traced a suspicious domain.

Just today Apple reported that a handfull of employee owned Mac’s were breached as well. They also stated they were working with law-enforcement agencies regarding the issues.

Unlike this seasons fashion, there are some trends I do not like seeing, and this is one of them. Facebook and Twitter are the biggest names in social media and Apple, well, it’s Apple. Do you think the hackers are part of the same group or do you believe this to be a trend of who can hack who out there?

Marvell is releasing Quad-Core

Marvell is releasing a quad-core chip named PXA1088 which is set to be in phones and tablets later this year. It has an ARM Cortex-A7 quad-core chip with support for global HSPA+ networks.

It seems as though Marvell is changing its game a little to better suit the U.S. market.  Marvell products were used in many Blackberry products until 3 years ago when they changed their market focus. While they are still a big hit in China this new PXA1088 is geared more towards $100 price range phones.

This handy new chip is rumored to be displayed at the Mobile World Congress in Spain this month. Stayed tuned with our blog here at BVA for the latest information about this and other new gadgets.

 

Price Decrease on MacBook Pro

Today Apple announced that the price of the 13″ MacBook Pro Retina display would drop by $200. The 128Gb laptop is now $1,499 but don’t fret if you wanted to spend $1,699 on, Apple solved that problem by introducing an upgraded model with 2.6GHz processor and 256GB of storage.

Apple dropped the price of the MacBook Air $100 as well leading some people to wonder why the sudden price drop. “When prices of components come down, they are willing to lower prices when they can. We don’t expect Apple to make the cheapest products on the markey, but they are committed to being affordable in the market.” says Ben Bajarin, a principal analyst at Creative Strategies.

With the rise of tablets in the workforce it no surpise that the MacBook line is decreasing in sales. Last quarter it dropped 1.1 million when comparing it to the same quarter the year before. Regardless all of us at BVA like to see the prices drop instead of increase.

 

Dell’s “Project Ophelia”

Another product that seems to have grabbed some attention at this year’s CES is Dell’s 3.5-inches long by 1.5-inches wide device that they named “Project Ophelia”. Dell is attempting to have a release date set for sometime this summer and will cost under $100.

While its size is quite small it claims to pack a lot of punch doing a lot of work through Dell’s PocketCloud. There are 2 usb ports on the device designed for a keyboard and mouse on this thumb size “computer” of sorts. You can utilize the USB the device has and plug it into your computer at home or you can use the MHL port allowing users to convert and computer or TV monitor to a computer. One downfall to that is MHL is roughly four years old and only a handful of companies offer it in their products.

Personally once this type of device becomes a little more fine-tuned it may turn out to be a handy thing to own, but until then I see it as just another small gadget to loose. It seems like a great concept but if you don’t have the right set-up you’ll be using a computer anyways or have to carry around a mouse and a keyboard which defeats its purpose. The team here at BVA will keep our eyes on “Product Ophelia’s” next step and we will see where it goes.

 

Toshiba’s New Tablet

We have the Apple iPad, Microsoft Surface, not to mention countless of other options in the tablet world. Toshiba is releasing the Regza AT501 in Japan this month sometime.  I view it as another attempt to be part of the market again outside of Japan after the AT500 didn’t make it big when they launched it in the UK in 2011.  While it does sync up with the Regza Link Share program so users can watch shows recorded from the Toshiba Regza TV units it seems fairly entry level, and it is priced at $481.  The 10.1in size tablet comes with features like the Nvidia Tegra 3 processor, a 5 megapixel rear and 2 megapixel front camera, and has a 4G option. Personally I don’t see this product stacking up to its competitors but I see Toshiba traveling in the right direction and maybe one day they’ll get there.

Surface Windows 8 Pro Review

Many of us BVA employee’s like to test out new gadgets but we are not always lucky enough to get our hands on them. One such item is Windows Surface Pro 8 by Microsoft. It’s been in some recent commercials along with getting some amazing reviews. It has gotten picked for the editor’s choice over at pamag.com for best tablet. The review covers comparisons, specs, aside from just a product review and I find it to be very knowledgeable especially if you are thinking of turning to tablets for business needs. So please feel free to read pcmag.com’s review here.

Nexus 4 and Google Now

Last night during The Grammy’s there was one commercial that caught our eye’s here at BVA and that was the Nexus 4/Google Now advertisement. The commercial showcased users’ from around the world using the phone for various things like translating lanuages, video-chatting, and giving directions for subway travelers.

In my home we are big on Apple products and when Siri came out I was pretty amazed by the things it could do. I am happy to see Google coming out with something that is comparable to Siri because I think that type of system puts a whole new meaning to a “Smart Phone”. Hopefully one day I can see what Google Now has to offer and compare the two side by side. Until you see that blog go up feel free to watch the commercial and give me your take on it. Watch the Google Now/Nexus 4 Commercial here.

 

 

 

Twitter Users Beware…

We here at BVA hate to see this happen but once again hackers have claimed their latest victim and personally I think their theory was “go big or go home” this time around. Twitter’s director  of information security Bob Lord claimed that roughly a quarter of a million “tweeters” out there could have had their information exposed. Such information includes usernames, passwords, email addresses and session passwords.

 

“We discovered one live attack and were able to shut it down in process moments later,” wrote Lord in his blog post titled “Keeping our users safe”. Emails were also reportedly sent out to the accounts that were affected stating that their passwords were no longer valid and that they had to reset them.

 

In an another part of Lord’s blog post he mentioned that Twitter did not believe this was the work of amateurs and since other companies were being attacked that they thought it was best to publicize what happened.

 

On a side note Moxie Marlinspike a white hat hacker who worked for Twitter after they bought his company Whisper Systems mentioned two weeks ago he was leaving Twitter. Maybe it’s just a coincidence but it’s another rumor to put into the mill.