Instead of VR headsets, maybe we should be thinking about Virtual Rooms?

The current hot topic in the gaming industry is virtual reality – made popular (once again) by the now Facebook-owned Oculus and their ‘Rift’ headset. It’s an impressive device, but one which is currently attempting to overcome crippling problems such as motion sickness…

Whilst Oculus arguably reinvigorated interest in the technology which can transport us to whole other created worlds – other players such as Sony have also announced their own competitors.

There are many...

By Ryan Daws, 07 May 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Devices, Gaming, Industry.

Oculus' VR may provide the closest solution to the "Look Up" viral video

We’re a generation attached to our displays.

A video went viral this week called “Look Up” which was written, performed, and directed by Gary Turk is a hard-hitting reminder of all the moments we are missing because we spend too much time in the digital realm.

Virtual reality companies such as Oculus want to keep us here – but even more immersed than what can be achieved from the glow of our smartphones.

Let’s be honest, things aren’t going to...

By Ryan Daws, 06 May 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Facebook, Gaming, Platforms.

Google under antitrust investigation over Android search monopoly

An antitrust investigation has been filed in California against Google which alleges the company is taking advantage of its MADA (Mobile Application Distribution Agreements) which Android device manufacturers have to sign so the company can establish a mobile search monopoly.

The OEMs have to sign their MADA in order to include apps on their devices such as YouTube and Google Play (Books, Movies, Music .etc) applications. They must preload with Google apps and give them prominent locations – including...

By Ryan Daws, 02 May 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Industry, Platforms.

Sony struggles as 18% higher-than-expected $1.3bn loss posted

Tokyo-based Sony has been struggling to make a profit from their traditional models of PC, MP3 players, TVs, cameras, and games consoles for some time now.

The company projected a loss for the fiscal year which ended March 31, 2014 as being $1.07 billion.

That number is now at $1.27 billion – a figure 18% higher than expected. Sony pits its exit from the PC market as being a factor in this loss – with write-downs on excess components.

In a statement, a Sony spokesperson said, “Consequently,...

By Ryan Daws, 01 May 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Gaming, Industry, Marketing.

Xbox One to launch in China, a gamer market bigger than the population of the U.S

Gaming giants Xbox and PlayStation are continuing their traditional console war to gain gamers hearts, minds, and thumbs. Foreign console sales in China have been banned for the past 14 years under reasons of influencing youth in the country.

That ban has now been lifted and Microsoft, in partnership with BesTV New Media, will be launching their Xbox One console in September.

China has around 500 million gamers – a third of the country – and more than the population of the entire U.S. Due to a...

By Ryan Daws, 30 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Gaming, Industry, Marketing, Microsoft, Platforms.

Should or shouldn’t Microsoft patch the IE flaw?

Several headlines can be found across the web which are designed to create fear that Windows XP is now unsecure – and rightly so, it is. What isn’t fair are the articles accusing Microsoft of being irresponsible for not releasing a fix despite announcing support will end months in advance.

It also isn’t Windows, Microsoft’s core product, which is at fault for this particular exploit – it’s Internet Explorer. Pointing the blame at the OS is only designed to further damage a...

By Ryan Daws, 29 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Microsoft, Security.

[Interview] Facebook’s Director of Partnerships talks Parse and acquisitions

Last Thursday was the anniversary of Facebook’s acquisition of Parse – a much-loved platform to develop apps across devices. DeveloperTech caught up with Julien Codorniou, Director of Partnerships at Facebook, to see how their relationship is going.

In the interview we are treated to the first numbers in which we can help gauge how successful the high-profile buy has been. As well as what the acquisition process is like from a company which consistently makes headline-worthy...

By Ryan Daws, 28 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Development Tools, Facebook, Languages, Platforms.

Microsoft’s week started with big earnings, and ended with Nokia... How was yours?

In a single week just under three months after his appointment as CEO, Satya Nadella has both sealed the deal for Microsoft's acquisition of iconic brand Nokia and given a successful earnings call.

The week’s news out of Redmond has displayed a positive outlook and growth for one of the world’s most famous brands, but one which is often criticised under the microscope in regards to being “late” to get a grasp on mobile devices.

Under the new deal, Nokia’s talent will merge with...

By Ryan Daws, 25 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Microsoft, Platforms, Testing.

OnePlus unveils One smartphone which reminds us to “Never Settle”

When you hear the team behind CyanogenMod is working on a device – you have to sit up and pay some amount of attention. OnePlus is a newcomer to smartphones and we know how hard it is for even the biggest companies to survive in this competitive environment.

As we followed with intrigue, the team at OnePlus teased us with their slogan “Never Settle” taking aim at a competition which always makes one sacrifice or another - so what is this wonder smartphone?

It’s the (bit oddly named)...

By Ryan Daws, 23 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Devices, Industry.

Dear Apple, Open up or be left behind…

Four years ago, Steve Jobs announced iOS’ video-calling feature ‘FaceTime’ would become Open so applications can be built cross-platform for the benefit of everyone. iOS users can keep in touch with their contacts in the bigger market which is the Android ecosystem, and vice-versa.

iOS users are still limited to calling each other. Despite adding features like FaceTime Audio (shouldn’t that be VoiceTime?) we're without a way to get in touch with our non-iDevice counterparts.

There's a...

By Ryan Daws, 22 April 2014, 1 comment. Categories: Apple, Industry, iOS, iPad, Platforms.

Google’s Android 5.0 will be design-focused

Before the release of Android 4.4 “KitKat” DeveloperTech predicted version 5.0 of the OS would see a focus on a complete redesign above all else. The functionality and capabilities of Android is ahead of the competition – but few would call stock ‘droid the prettiest OS of the bunch.

Closest rival, Apple, had a design-focus in iOS7 removing all “skeuomorphic” elements and going for a flat-design reminiscent...

By Ryan Daws, 17 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Design, Platforms, Testing.

Report shows in-app purchases to be most lucrative

Have you noticed the rise in applications making use of in-app purchases? A new report from VentureBeat Intel shows these developers have good reason to implement them; after all, they are by far the most lucrative method of monetisation.

The report collates data taken from 176 various developers across 1,000 different games to get a clear idea of how others can profit from their works.

It takes into account the cost-effectiveness of implementing the various methods...

By Ryan Daws, 16 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, App Stores, iOS, Marketing, Monetisation.

Android vs. iOS: "Originality" shots fired over new docs

Even if you keep out of the firing range you are sure to have heard the “copy” shots between the passionate Android and iOS camps. With each OS release, features are borrowed from one another in a bid to one-up the competition…

“Good artists copy, but great artists steal” one Pablo Picasso said, a quote more recently repeated by Apple founder Steve Jobs. Despite this, Jobs declared “thermonuclear war” on Android due to seeing the platform as a direct replica of...

By Ryan Daws, 14 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Industry, iOS, Platforms.

Firefox OS 2.0 wants to set iOS and Android ablaze

Everyone loves an underdog, but when it comes to your mobile OS unless you want to spend your days looking at the competitions’ full app stores – your choice comes between iOS, Android, and the fast-rising Windows Phone

Mozilla launched the first iteration of their plucky Firefox OS last year to little fanfare and a fair bit of confusion from consumers. Why was a web browser launching an OS? What can it do different from current beloved platforms?

The...

By Ryan Daws, 11 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: HTML5, Industry, Platforms.

Project Ara’s MDK and the smartphone “designed for 6 billion people.”

Google’s Project Ara is a forward-thinking device with the unique tagline of being able to call itself as “Designed exclusively for 6 billion people.”

If you’re unfamiliar, how can Ara make that bold yet valid claim? The device, or devices dependent on how you look at it, is compromised of modules which can be designed by any manufacturer to “swap” in and out as needed…

We all know how fast hardware advances, and there are a good proportion of us...

By Ryan Daws, 10 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Development Tools, Platforms, Testing.

Chromecast and Android TV: Is there a world where both co-exist?

Google’s last play into the television market was the aptly-named, Google TV. Remember it? Not many will because it wasn’t what you could call a runaway success. Such a failure in fact that it was pulled completely and brushed under the rug.

But the company isn’t ready to give up the living room to Apple, Microsoft, Roku, or the many other companies vying to take over the biggest screen in our homes – and understandably so.

First up is

By Ryan Daws, 09 April 2014, 1 comment. Categories: Android, HTML5, Industry, Platforms, Testing.

Xbox Music: Bringing tunes to the masses (of apps)

Right this second I’m listening to Spotify competitor, Xbox Music. This is a service I’ve come to love and – since enabling music videos – has ended up becoming my go-to service daily for music consumption.

But from a game-changing move for developers at BUILD 2014; it may soon be enhancing your enjoyment without you even realising…

A new Xbox Music API wants to make the service’s “over 18 million tracks” available for use in any game or...

By Ryan Daws, 07 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Development Tools, Gaming, Industry, Platforms.

Microsoft: How our Cloud is enabling new gaming experiences…

At BUILD 2014 we’ve seen a lot of advancements regarding Windows and Windows Phone – but a lot us have been waiting for Microsoft to showcase how the much-hailed Cloud is going to help developers create brand-new gaming experiences...

During the company’s annual developer conference – a demonstration showed the differences between using the local power of (even a high-end) PC alone compared to using the same PC but with some Cloud-based assistance.

The performance when pitted...

By Ryan Daws, 04 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Cloud, Development Tools, Gaming, Microsoft, Platforms.

BUILD 2014: Smart coffees, smarter devices, and the smartest AI?

Microsoft’s biggest event of the year, BUILD, is kicking off today and we already have pretty strong evidence regarding what to expect. But could Redmond shock us with any surprises?

This week Microsoft’s new CEO, Satya Nadella, had his first public appearance in an event to launch the long-anticipated Microsoft Office for Apple’s iPad tablet. Since, he has announced a reorganisation of his executive team…

Both his initial appearance and reorganisation plans have...

By Ryan Daws, 02 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Development Tools, Microsoft, Platforms.

Microsoft has a new star exec line-up, and it quells Xbox sell-off rumours…

Newly appointed Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella, appears to be moving fast to break down the team barriers often said to be a barrier to innovation at the Redmond-based company. His latest shake-up announced in an email to employees today shows a promising future.

The new executive positions relate to the Cloud and Enterprise department, Devices Group, and the company’s consumer ‘Xbox’ brand recently rumoured to be sold to a...

By Ryan Daws, 01 April 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Gaming, Microsoft, Platforms.