* Posts by Silver

100 publicly visible posts • joined 20 Apr 2010


Europe loves to pay by bonk* - survey


Re: Who the hell is using them daily?

I have only seen a few people use them - usually on the tube - and even then they call it a amusing faff after they have done

Strange, I see tonnes of people using cards on the underground. I'd almost go so far to say that I see more people using their contactless bank card than I do Oyster.

If you work in Canary Wharf then contactless is pretty much the standard payment mechanism. It's rare to find someone paying in cash and rare to find a shop that won't take contactless.

In fact, I use contactless so much I rarely need to feel the need to carry any cash (currently I have 23p). It's rather nice.

WhatsApp at BlackBerry? For one thing, BBM's now free


Re: O RLY?

The app DOES NOT WORK, EVEN ON BB10, if you refuse access to contacts ... again, STFU!

There is a massive difference between "the app doesn't work if you don't allow it access to your contacts" (which is what you and I have both suggested is that case) and "the app slurps all your contacts whether you agree to it or not" (which is what The Reg has written).

If you're going to call someone an idiot, it would be helpful if you understood the distinction.


Re: ICQ!!! Blimey, there's a blast from the past... is it still going?

(I have an 8 digit user name, which is old)

My ID is 7 digits long. Even though I've not used it for years, I can still remember my number!!

I think I must have joined around 1998? Maybe 1999.



Facebook snaffles your contacts book whether you agree to it or not

You sure about that? If that was true then it would mean Facebook are using an exploit to subvert the permissions the operating system gives to apps. In which case, I'd expect it to have blown up all over the internet and both Apple and Google engineers scrambling to fix it PDQ.

Or did you mean the less exciting (but possibly more accurate) "Facebook snaffles your contacts book as a condition of using it"?

I want my EPG, say Windows Media Center users left in dire straits


Re: UK EPG is broken for Windows Media Center

Are you sure the UK stream is compromised? I've just triggered a guide update that has an expiry date of 17 Sept.

If you have 7 days then that's the standard over-the-air EPG data from Freeview. If you are getting the proper feed then you should have a fortnight's worth of data - plus a lot more metadata.

(I'm getting only the OTA EPG data too)

Vodafone: For Pete's sake! Apple’s 'soft' SIM's JUST AN EE SIM


Softsim is very convenient for users. Hate your CellCo? Push the "Change me now" button. Done.

It's not very convenient if the telco you want to switch to isn't on that list.

I have no problem with soft sim cards, but unless I can change to any carrier, at any time, without needing a data connection and without having to get "permission" from one more more third parties (eg. my existing telco or Apple) then it's an inferior solution to a problem that no-one is asking to be solved.

Pay-by-bonk 'glitch' means cards can go kaching-for-crims


Re: I'd expect..

It's my understanding that there is also a limit on the maximum amount Visa will pass through their service for your bank to authorise.

Plus this only works for offline transactions, those low value payments where the cost of a small amount of fraud is offset by the speed and convenience of not having to go online every transaction (eg. car park ticket machine). No merchant does this with high value items.

There is a probably a good reason why they haven't tried this out in the real world, as I doubt it'll work. I would still expect Visa to look into it though to see what (if anything) can be changed to prevent this.

Hey, iPhone 6 fanbois: Apple's bonk to 'Pay' app IS GO


Re: Zapp is clearly the future.

Zapp is clearly the future.

It isn't really. For starters:

1. In order to make a payment to a merchant, you are going to need a data connection. Ever tried that when you're in a shopping centre? Either impossible or very sloooooow.

2. Assuming you have data, you'll need to log onto your banking app to authorise the payment. How long does that take you to do today? Do you need to use one of those stupid token things? Now imagine doing it for a cup of coffee, with one hand holding a bunch of bags, a bloke who wants to give you a hot beverage and 16 people behind you wanting you to bugger off because they want to pay for their item.


Re: POS upgrades?

If Apple Pay is using Host Card Emulation, then it shouldn't be an issue.

Apple Pay uses a Secure Element to store the card details, not Host Card Emulation (which is, essentially, a software only version of Secure Element).

Existing contactless terminals that retailers have will work just fine with NFC. However the payment processors (Visa and MasterCard for now) will need their tokenisation service up and running and Apple will need agreements in place with your card issuer (read "bank that gave you that credit or debit card") before you can have any hope of make a payment using it.

Apple's new 'iPad Air 2' sliced open, revealing (possible) A8X core


Re: Minor bump

Honest curiosity: were you running up against the 1GB limit on your existing iPad

Quite frequently in Safari, where I would open up one tab, then create a second and then flip back to the first.

At that point the first tab would have to be reloaded (conveniently losing any buttons I'd toggled or forms I'd filled in) - presumably because there wasn't enough RAM to have two tabs on the go at once.

I don't need the ability to open a hundred tabs on my iPad, but at least 2GB will stop Safari from being the painful browsing experience it currently is.

Mozilla's 'Tiles' ads debut in new Firefox nightlies


Re: Confused

So... you open the new Firefox and see a bunch of tiles you don't like the look of. You hit the X on each of these naff tiles until the sponsored ones are gone. And you are then back with your own tiles.

You don't even have to hit the X, just browse to a bunch of sites and they will start to replace the promotional tiles. After you've visited 9 different websites, they all will be gone. A feat that can probably be achieved in no more than about 30 minutes of normal usage.

If you're upgrading from an existing version then you won't see the sponsored ones at all.

There is the potential for Mozilla to do dodgy things in the future (like with any product from any company since ... well ... ever) but, as it currently stands, it's just lots of people making a mountain out of a molehill...

Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery


Re: @Lost all faith...

Oh that's right, iPhones don't have widgets..

Sure, they do.

They were implemented in iOS 5 and are accessible from the notification centre. You had access to stocks, weather, song details and playback controls, upcoming appointments and the ability to post to facebook or twitter. All of which were a quick glance away and showed a useful piece of information with no need to actually open the app in question (the definition of a "widget" right?).

In all fairness, there wasn't a lot of choice (although most of my Android owning friends only used the weather, music or clock widgets - all of which were represented in iOS), they couldn't be developed by anyone else apart from Apple (changing in iOS 8) and iOS 7 changed things around quite a bit.

However, they were there.

iWatch watch: Apple tags sales bod from luxury Swiss watch firm


Re: A luxury iwatch

I don't think I've ever spent more than £100 on a watch. Seriously, why would you?

Given that you can buy a perfectly workable watch for around £20, why did you choose to spend 5 times more than that?

(Hint: Your answer to that question will probably also answer your own question)

Sonos turns up volume, slips out new Wi-Fi speaker control app


Dedicated controller

I miss the dedicated controller.

Sure, it was horribly overpriced - especially when you consider that an iPod Touch is cheaper and can do plenty more.

However I'd rather leave a dedicated controller lying around in the lounge and hand it to anyone who wants to control the music rather than getting out my phone or iPad, unlocking it and also giving them unfettered access to all my personal stuff.

(I could just buy an iPod Touch, but it's not quite as good an experience as a dedicated controller and massive overkill for something that is only going to have one task)

Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini tech specs REVEALED


Just like the ones before...

So basically the S5 mini (like the S4 mini and the S3 mini) will be a mid-tier mid-specification handset whose only connection to it's big brother is that it shares a similar look?

I can understand that you might not be able to get a 1080p screen at that low a size so it may have to be 720p, but I see no reason why you need to downgrade pretty much every other specification as well.

Still Sammy have been making money hand over fist with this strategy, so I can't criticise them too much for it...

Microsoft in 1-year Windows XP survival deal with UK govt


Re: Wasting taxpayer's money again

Yup, the old "Wasting Taxpayers' Money" cry, without looking at the bigger picture.

Surely the bigger picture here is that 1 year from now, the Government will be £5.5m worse off and still be in no better position than they are right now? As in, they are still going to have to migrate - whether they like it or not.

Unlike some others on here, I have no issue with the Government continuing to use Windows and Office (rather than attempt to migrate to Linux and Open/Libre Office) - but I do object to tax payers money being spent on a years worth of support that could have been easily avoided if they'd just planned better and started migrating earlier.

It's not like Microsoft haven't been giving plenty of notice.

So. Farewell then Steelie Neelie: You were WORSE than USELESS


Re: She was amazed at the stupidity of the situation

And she actually did quite a job fixing it. It is largely thanks to her that roaming bills are now capped.

If that is the case, then I think that the premise of this article (that she was "worse than useless") is not only incorrect but also rather unfair.



Wasn't this the same Neelie who was "amazed" that people turn off data roaming when abroad because they don't want to be hit by sky high charges?

It must be nice to have unlimited internet access on your phone wherever you go in the world with the bill picked up by someone else. That's the only reason I can come up with that explains her surprise.

Ex-Xbox gros fromage joins wireless speaker whizzkids Sonos



We’re thinking the obvious thing first, which is direct Xbox sound output to Sonos.

Why is this "obvious"? Why do you think he'll make decisions that will favour a company he no longer works for?

He's on the pay-role of Sonos now - so I'd say the obvious thing would be him making decisions that benefit Sonos, not necessarily Microsoft.

Satya Nadella's first act may be to launch Office for iPad


Re: Do iPad users need Office?

Or maybe the could discover they could do more than watching cat videos and update the Facebook status...

Of all the things I wish I could do more with an iPad, I have to admit that editing Excel spreadsheets isn't one of them.

But if that's what floats your boat, who am I to judge? :)


Do iPad users need Office?

Given that it's been 4 years since the iPad launched, I would think that the bigger worry for Microsoft is how many people have come to the conclusion in those 4 years that they can actually get along just fine without having Office.

WhatsApp founder: Privacy WON'T vanish under Facebook



...while lamenting "baseless, unfounded and irresponsible" reports...


Does he think he's sold WhatsApp to a different Facebook than the one the rest of us know?

Is Apple about unleash a cheaper 8GB iPhone 5C? O2 'leak' suggests: Yes


Re: 8GB

That won't cut the mustard I'm afraid. once the OS is loaded on you won't have much wiggle room for apps.

Or updates.

Last time I did an update it wanted over 1.5GB of free space - on an 8GB phone (where you don't ever get that much actual free space) that could be extremely difficult to achieve.

On a side note, I still maintain that Apple need to decouple application updates from operating system updates and deliver the former through the (perfectly good) App Store.


Re: Oblivious to obvious

How are Apple the only people in the world to not understand that the 5C has sold badly due to it's poor value for money??? Halving the memory capacity and knocking £45 off the price is... Yep, still poor value for money.

Not to mention that pastel colours generally tend to put off half of your potential buyers.

Europe approves common charger standard for mobe-makers


Re: Deja Vu

All manufacturers except Apple followed the recommendation, but since Apple kept coming up with new proprietary plugs the commission decided to make things binding.

In the past eleven years Apple have switched connectors once - from the 30-pin connector to the lightening connector.

In comparison, most of the other manufacturers have switched twice - going from proprietary to mini-USB and then to micro-USB.

So in what world was it that Apple "kept coming up with new proprietary plugs"?


Re: @Mike Bell

Really? When you plug in your phone you pray to $deity just because you've avoided the second it takes to turn the plug round 180 degrees? And how long does it take to pray to $deity?

More like you try to put it in one way, doesn't go, flip it 180 degrees, try again, nope still doesn't work, flip it 180 degrees again and (finally!) it goes in.

I also assume you never bought anything with an Apple dock in the past.

The 16-pin connector was introduced in 2003 and retired in 2012 making a total of 9 years. As far as I can remember, no other manufacturers connector has come remotely close to lasting that amount of time.

Hell, even Nokia's 3.5mm one only lasted 6 years.

Not sure if you're STILL running Windows XP? AmIRunningXP.com to the rescue!


Re: Sigh

Dear MS, stop twatting about with crap like this and FIX the abomination that is Windows 8-8.1-8.1a or whatever....

Whilst I understand what you're trying to say, I'm not entirely sure how the people with the skills required to design and build a website could contribute to fixing the problems with Windows 8.

I seriously doubt that Windows 8 developers were taken off the project to work on this.

Barclays warns freelance techies of DOUBLE DIGIT rate cut


Re: Perspective

Why don't you actually talk to some IT contractors and find out how much they're paid? 'cause frankly I seriously doubt there are many earning that level. Most will be between the £300-£400 mark per day

I work in Financial Services and the majority of IT contractors I know earn at least £500 per day. I have to do the budgets for the ones in my team.

As a highly qualified, and in demand Electronics Engineer (there's a shortage of us in the UK), not even I earn as much as £500 a day, nevermind £700 a day!

Right, so because someone who is in demand in a completely different profession doesn't get £500 per day, it's not possible for someone else to do so?

Please get your facts straight before posting stuff like that, you only reinforce the misconception that we contractors are earling loads'a'lolly... though we would if we could!! :-)

And by "we" you actually mean "we Electronic Engineering contractors who don't work in a bank", right?

Because that appears to be your only frame of reference here.


Re: Perspective

Lets breach their contract and really fuck them over a barrel because they definitely don't deserve to earn what they're worth...

The whole point of being a contractor is that you're a flexible, disposable, short-term resource. As compensation, your day rate is significantly higher than a permanent equivalent.

If you'd rather something more stable, then go permanent and accept that you'll get paid less. You can't have it both ways.



Whilst I fully accept that a pay cut is never a nice thing, it's worth noting that a £500 per day contractor working 225 days (which is (365/7)*5 = 260 - 7 days unpaid sick and 28 days unpaid holiday) will earn £112,500 a year.

Admittedly that is without pension, private healthcare and life insurance - but they won't make that much of a dent.

For those on £700 a day, that would be £157,500 and place them in the top 1% of earners in the UK.

Sandisk breaks 128GB barrier with new $199 MICROSD card


Some rough stats

"But the longterm trend appears to be towards cloud as a storage medium and, for smartphones at least, SanDisk will have a tougher time of it."

I ran the numbers through GSM Arena on the number of Android handsets launched with microSD support worldwide:

In 2012, it was 357 handsets.

In 2013, it was 424 handsets.

In 2014, it was 35 handsets for the first two months. At the current rate, it'll be 210 by the end of the year.

So it looks like microSD support on Android increased in 2013 but is now falling off very rapidly.

(if I had more time and inclination, then I probably should look at the percentages of handsets that had microSD support rather than absolute values and also limit it to USA and EU5 regions)

Samsung brandishes quad-core Galaxy S5, hopes nobody wants high specs


Re: Brilliant

"Samsung are slipping behind Apple and making mis-steps like that sWatch thing." as opposed to the vapourwear iWatch?

You might want to read up on the definition of "vapourware".

Vapourware is software or hardware that has been advertised but is not yet available to buy, either because it is only a concept or because it is still being written or designed.

In case you hadn't noticed, Apple have not made any kind of announcement or advertisement about the iWatch.

Google gives Maps a lick of paint, smears it over screens worldwide


Missing stuff just for me?

Is it just me or is search nearby not available on the new maps? I used to put in a place (or postcode) then click on the pin, hit search nearby and type something generic (like "restaurants") and get a nice list of near by restaurants. This very useful option seems to have gone.

In addition, I've seen plenty of people who talk about how it's integrated with Google Contacts but every single time I try to type a name, it tries to find a road of that name, rather than suggesting the home or work addresses of someone in my address book.

HTC offers FREEBIE repair on new models with cracked screens


Hate to be a party pooper

Whilst we're all cheering about HTCs update policy - it's worth pointing out that this is the third time now that they've promised software updates for their flagship handsets.

Now, I'm no PR expert, but I'm pretty sure that there is no need to promise something a second or third time if you are ... well, you know ... actually doing it when you announced it the first time.

BBC, ITV gang up on YouView with 'FreeView Connect'


Say what?

As one source told the paper: "YouView was meant to be the champion of the next generation of free-to-air, but the involvement of the internet service providers means that it has become a pay platform. YouView isn't the champion of the free; it's the home of the pay."

If you're going to put a twin tuner and 500GB+ hard drive into a product, you're never going to get it to a price where it can be the "champion of the free".

Having said that, my parents walked into John Lewis only last week and picked up a 1TB Humax FreeView box for 250 notes. After the initial outlay, I don't envisage they'll be frequenting the "home of the pay" any time soon.

Not to mention that, compared to Sky's cheapest offering, they'll have recouped their investment in 10 months and be just over £450 better off after two years.

BT scratches its head over MYSTERY Home Hub disconnections


Serious question: why buy a new router?

My parents just had Infinity installed and I had a play with the router.

It looks perfectly capable and can do all the usual stuff you'd expect. It's dual band 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, gigabit ethernet, you can attach a HDD to it as a basis NAS and all the usual configuration stuff seems to be there (static IPs, firewall settings, etc).

So what features exactly are worth dumping, what seems to be a reasonable bit of technology, and ponying up 150 quid for a new router?

I suppose QoS might be nice, but unless you live in a house with 5 other students all gaming and using bittorrent, I'm not sure it's worth the extra 150 notes nice...

NatWest 'spam' email cockup got me slapped with late payment fee, says angry Reg reader


Re: more lessons

I know how the credit card cashback fee system works, and yes ideally the payment processors wouldn't have us by the short and curlies and charge as much

Payment processors charge approximately 1p per transaction. You're confusing their fee structure with that of acquiring banks.


Re: more lessons

What really happens is that the CC company screws the merchant via transaction fees, who then increases the price of goods you were buying in the first place to cover it. Nothing banks do is ever designed to actually give you money which they haven't managed to screw out of someone else first.

Oh dear, another one who thinks that there are no costs to a merchant when handling cash.

Why do you think supermarkets give you cashback for free? It's because the costs they incur storing, auditing and transporting cash outweigh the fees they are charged by their acquiring bank.

As a result, it's in their interests to offload as much cash as they can onto their shoppers before the day ends.

Apple plans to waggle iNormous 4½-incher in fanbois' faces

Thumb Up

It'll settle the debate

At present, if I want a iOS device with a screen greater than 4 inches then I'm out of luck.

Similarly, if I want a Android device with a screen smaller than 4.3 inches (that isn't decidedly mid-spec) then I'm also out of luck.

If Apple do launch a "small" and "large" size then at least we can finally work out what the market actually prefers - rather than what the market is pushed to buying, whether they like it or not.

Plusnet is working on a network-level filter to block pirate sites


Plusnet is in the process of launching a more comprehensive blocking solution that means Plusnet will block all websites engaged in online copyright infringement where ordered by a court to do so

Maybe I'm misreading this, but it sounds like to me that PlusNet's existing blocking capability is a bit of a pain in the backside to update.

Given that and their expectation that the courts will order a lot more sites to be blocked in the future, they are simply updating the system so they can comply with orders quicker, cheaper and with less effort than they do today.

I could, however, be completely wrong - but I find it odd that an ISP would start going above and beyond what the courts order, unless they like losing customers.

LogMeIn: We're stopping our free offering from now


Re: VNC?

"I've never used, or even seen, LogMein but wouldn't TightVNC do the job? I have have controlled Windows PCs from a Linux one using Tight VNC over a phone line or a VPN."

I used to use TightVNC but then switched to LogMeIn Free. The biggest issues with TightVNC was that I'd have to get my parents to tell me their IP address so I could connect, I had configure the router to assign static IPs to the laptop and desktop and then punch holes in the firewall (and remember which port was used by which machine) so I could get access to them. Also in a multi-user system, I couldn't switch users without the TightVNC connection dropping.

In comparison, with LMI I just open the website, log in, click on the PC I want to access and I'm connected. No further configuration was necessary and even if they took the PC to another house (with different firewall connection) I could still connect without any issues.

Lenovo Yoga 10: Mediocre tech, yes, but beautifully fondleable


Re: All that's needed to make it perfect

For some reason I'm reminded of Monty Python:

"All right... all right... but apart from better sanitation and medicine and education and irrigation and public health and roads and a freshwater system and baths and public order... what have the Romans done for us?"

REVEALED: How YOU PAY extra for iPHONES - even if you DON'T HAVE ONE


Nothing new here!

I work in the mobile industry and used to work for a network operator dealing directly with handset manufacturers. These deals are nothing special and very common. We call them MOQs (or Minimum Order Quantities) and the OEM offers a certain price and/or marketing funding in return for the operator paying a "fine" if they don't need the minimum number.

The advantage of the iPhone is that you have a pretty good chance of hitting the MOQ - whereas launching one of the myriad of Samsung variants can be significantly more risky.

So the real story here is that everyone is probably paying a small amount of money for the disaster that was the Android phone with a built in tea maker - rather than the iPhone.

Schmidt: 'Android mobes are a great Christmas present to an iPhone user!'


Expensive Christmas present

An unlocked Galaxy S4 goes for £384 on Amazon. The cheapest Nexus 5 is £299.

According to VoucherCodes, the average amount a person spends on /all/ Christmas presents is £240.

It might be more realistic for him to suggest buying your other half a Moto G and then a pair of socks for each of the other members in your family.

Samsung to spend ENTIRE budget of London 2012 OLYMPICS... on ADS


Re: To put it into perspective ...

The difference is that other people /want/ to do Apple's advertising for them.

Less so for Samsung, which is why they are spending bucket loads of money.

Don't underestimate how difficult it is to buy brand loyalty.

Apple supplier's '11-hours-a-day' toilers have '1 day off a month'


It's nice that they spoke to Apple and asked for them to sort out the problem.

How come Samsung, HTC, Nokia, LG and Motorola don't seem to have to do anything?

Barclays says soz for titsup website, bank app


Re: Will we ever get the truth?

"So what compensation will Barclays customers get for this loss of service? RBS gave us nothing; it would be nice to see a change to this trend."

I would normally suggest that you try to get them to waive a months fee for the service that they provide.

However, for the majority of retail customers, this would be a 12th of nothing.

Dear-ly beloved: Apple’s costly iPad Mini with Retina Display


All the reviews I've seen of tablets which are sized appropriately for watching films and TV is that when you rotate them into landscape, there isn't enough screen space to comfortably view stuff without excessive scrolling. Not to mention that once you pop the onscreen keyboard up, it takes up over three quarters of the available space.


Maybe my priorities are different, but since I like using a tablet in landscape to browse the web and check my email, I'm more than happy putting up with some black bars top and bottom when watching films and TV.

Thought you didn't need to show ID in the UK? Wrong


What on earth?

"Rob Andrew, joint project manager for the partnership, says that the town’s venues saw the wide range of Pass-approved card designs as confusing."

Maybe I'm missing something blindingly obvious ... but why on earth did the Pass scheme not mandate one single design (or possibly two, depending on the age bracket) for all cards produced?

Apple will FAIL in corporate land 'because IT managers hate iPads'


Does Apple even care?

I didn't think Apple cared that much about businesses wedded to Windows systems. In fact, I don't think they have for many years now. If I'm right, I can't see how they are going to worry too much about this news - especially when they are still making money hand over fist in the more lucrative consumer market.

Plus, the days of buying a home computer based on what you had at work are long gone. Otherwise we'd all be rushing out to pick up XP based systems with IE6 - rather than iPads, iPhones and Android based devices.