May 2013

That's an easy choice

by Volker Weber


WLAN nervt

by Volker Weber


Auf Reisen trifft man auf den ganz normalen WLAN-Wahnsinn in Hotels, Flughäfen und den wunderbaren ICEs der Deutschen Bahn. Eine Bestandsaufnahme:

Fazit: wenn man Glück hat, gibt es kostenloses WLAN. Wenn es nicht kostenlos ist, sind die Preise völlig abgehoben. Dort, wo es mal was gekostet hat, gibt es immer noch die gleichen blödsinnigen Logins. T&Cs werden überall eingefordert, aber nirgends getrackt. Wenn man Vouchercodes bekommt, dann aus der Schublade ohne jede Buchführung. Das WLAN geht immer wieder "kaputt", weil man zu unregelmäßigen Zeiten wieder die TCs abnicken muss oder seine Codes eingeben muss, die niemand prüft.

Wenn das WLAN mal wieder auf Eingabe wartet, kommen natürlich keine Mails an, keine Skype-Anrufe, etc. Fels in der Brandung wie immer: BlackBerry. Wenn das WLAN nicht will, geht er einfach auf das Mobilfunknetz. Natürlich nur, wenn man ihn lässt.

MOBUG - speak sponsor attend

by Volker Weber

MOBUG is a conference focussed on everything Mobile, from enterprise management to hardware, security , software and emerging technologies.  A full day of strategic, management and technical sessions. covering all aspects of the mobile technology industry.

These guys brought free conferences to the Lotus marketplace. Now they go mobile.

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Lync-Skype connectivity available today

by Volker Weber

We are thrilled to announce the availability of Lync-Skype connectivity for Lync customers around the world. This marks our first important step in extending Lync’s unified communications capabilities to the hundreds of millions of people who use Skype. This combination enables Lync customers to take advantage of the global reach of Skype to connect and collaborate with suppliers, customers, and partners while relying on the enterprise richness of Lync. This initial set of features includes:

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Gestern Hamburg, nächsten Dienstag Köln, dann Stuttgart und München

by Volker Weber


Wir hatten heute eine wirklich tolle, gut besuchte Veranstaltung in Hamburg im Gastwerk. Alles hat gestimmt. Die Vorträge, die Teilnehmer, die Partner. Bin sehr gespannt auf die Feedback-Auswertung, aber ich denke, wir haben das noch nie so gut getroffen.

Es ist noch nicht zu spät. Für Hamburg hatten wir einen Schwung Anmeldungen am Vortag. Und an den anderen Standorten haben wir auch noch Plätze frei.

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by Volker Weber

I had a few minutes with the Lumia 925. And I want one. It's a 920 in a slim body with a few changes. The camera gets an additional lens, you lose wireless charging, which you can add with an optional backplate. It may have less memory (16 instead of 32 GB), depending on SKU. It is a lot lighter and slimmer, it's partially aluminium (or aluminum for the US market).

While I like the slim body, I don't like the trade-offs with memory and wireless charging. And I prefer the 920 design. I understand that wireless charging is an feature not many people use, so it makes sense to make it an option.

Why do I want one? The camera. I want the best camera on the market. And that is the Lumia 925. Having said that, I will make the bold statement, that I will want an ever better one before the year is out.

A missed opportunity

by Volker Weber

Photo Volker Weber

Sometimes things don't work out the way you thought they would. My trip to Berlin was one of those occasions. What I wanted to do was a short interview with Stephen Elop on all things Nokia. I had prepared about 20 questions and wanted short concise answers. I have done this before and know how that works. You need a 30 minute window and you end up with 20 minutes of footage.

What I got instead was an hour of "fireside chat" with four people where 20 minutes were lost on process (did not show up until 20 minutes into the hour) then 20 minutes of prepared remarks (all of which I had heard before) and 20 minutes of very, very long answers with a CEO demoing a photo app (which of course I had also seen before).

That was a waste of time. For all parties involved. We have all figured this out now.

Here is a little bit I got out of those 20 minutes:

  1. No, Microsoft is not too slow innovating (says Stephen). Nokia influences Microsoft by prioritizing changes they need. This lets Nokia get ahead in areas they want to innovate in. Think camera and maps.
  2. Drive+/Drive. Lumia 920, 820, 620 have Drive+ (free car navigation everywhere). Lumia 720 and 520 only include Drive (free car nav in your home country). The idea is to bring the price down for entry level devices by paying less money from right pocket to left pocket. HERE is Nokia's map business and they get revenue from providing Drive. 620 is cheaper than 720, but it was announced earlier. Anyway, this whole thing is messy and will get fixed. Drive+ needs to get out of beta for this to happen.
  3. Nokia has conflicting objectives with HERE. On one hand they want something for Lumia as an exclusive. On the other hand they need as many users on HERE as possible in order to get good telemetry. When Apple stumbled with maps, Nokia quickly offered HERE on iPhone. What they had at that time was not good enough. Nokia understands and will improve.
  4. Nokia will make other things than smartphones. When asked about tablets, watches, wearable computing, quantified self, Stephen would answer to the affirmative. However he would not preannounce anything (as was to be expected) or be specific. We will see other products with a Nokia badge, this far Stephen acknowledged. And yes, they will be in this space.
  5. Nokia started out with 920 and 820, added 620 then 520 and 720, now variants of the 920. Those variants are incremental changes which lets Nokia have hero devices in the US (920 on AT&T and 928 on Verizon) as well as have a refresh on the 920 theme with the 925. But there are bigger things in the pipeline for the rest of the year. We are only 5 months in.

That's it, Charlie Brown. I had a lot more on my plate. I wanted this to be a big interview with a lot of exposure. And I wanted it on video. I ended up with a nice conversation with a very sharp man.

Manage BlackBerry 10 files over the network

by Volker Weber

This is one of my favorite BlackBerry 10 stealth features. You can manage files on your device over the network. No need to connect it to the computer. And with BlackBerry Link on your PC or Mac it also works in the other direction. Access files on your computer from your mobile.

What would you ask Stephen Elop?

by Volker Weber

Photo: Nokia

Traveling to Berlin in the morning to have a chat with Stephen Elop, CEO of Nokia. It will be a small group of four people asking him a few questions. What would you ask, if you only had one question? Drop me an email.

This account isn't dead. It's resting.

by Volker Weber

Don't bother friending me on Facebook. If I don't know you, I won't accept. Why do I keep the account? To check up on RL friends who live there. I don't, but I come visit. I will leave as silently as I came.

And yes, the timeline is empty:


by Volker Weber

It's very important for Americans to be "leading". You won't read a press release without this word. It's a hollow word but you sometimes have to back up why you are leading. That's simple: you define the rules. Examples:

For any meaningful analysis you need to look way beyond your normal scope. But that's not what "leading" is about.

Testing BB10

by Volker Weber

When testing BlackBerry 10 in an existing BlackBerry infrastructure, don't assume that all things will work, because they work on your device. Find users with really old mail files. Users who migrated through a couple of infrastructure revisions. With BB 10, you are switching from BES syncing to EAS. And you will suddenly hit old recurring calendar entries that have been badly converted. Or corrupt entries that BES glosses over. Those might throw you off the track. Look for hundreds if not thousands of log entries, per person, per day. And then fix the mail file.

Just sayin'.


by Volker Weber


Wieder nix los auf Google+

Ignorance is bliss

by Volker Weber

This is making the rounds (as a photo with superimposed text of course):

Weak people revenge.
Strong people forgive.
Intelligent people ignore.

I have learned to ignore maleficent people a very long time ago. This way I don't have to be strong to forgive or be weak and revengeful. It's much easier to ignore. The world is large enough.

People often came and told me "look what (s)he wrote". I am not interested.

IBM being social

by Volker Weber

IBM has a social business Twitter account. Twitter offered it up so I checked it out. This was their latest tweet. They really do understand social, don't they.

Don't update the Windows Phone YouTube app

by Volker Weber

The Youtube app for Windows Phone is pretty cool. It lets you do things, that Google won't allow. You can download videos for offline access, it won't display ads and it ignores video restrictions. Basically, it does all the things that you want.

Google has sent Microsoft a cease-and-desist order to take down that app. Microsoft has complied and updated the app. It still does not display ads, but it no longer lets you download videos.

I think I am keeping my version for the time being.

It's actually quite easy

by Volker Weber

Oliver S started a Hangout with you today while you were away.

Kids, don't iMessage me. Don't SMS me. Don't BBM me. Don't WhatsApp me. Don't HangOut me. Don't call me. I have way too many machines that will take your message and ignore it. But there is one thing, that always works:

Send me an email. Put your wish in the subject line. We will work it out from there.

New luggage

by Volker Weber

I like to travel light. Which means one bag only, no checked baggage. If I have a second bag, it has to fit in the first. Phone goes into my hoodie, headset around the neck. And still I find myself with a jacket, a water bottle or an iPad that I have to carry in the other hand.

Not any more.

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Filmportal Acetrax macht dicht – Käufer verlieren ihre Filme

by Volker Weber

Das Filmportal Acetrax, in Deutschland vor allem durch die Integration auf Smart-TVs von Panasonic bekannt geworden, stellt zum 21. Juni seinen Betrieb ein. Das wird vor allem zu einem Problem für die Kunden, die auf der Seite Filme gekauft haben -- denn die gab es nur kopiergeschützt.

Repeat after me: DRM is bad for the customer.

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LiveSight advances HERE maps

by Volker Weber


Mapping gets better. Google released a new version of Maps last week, and Nokia is adding LiveSight to HERE Maps. LiveSight shows you places around you. If you searched for a place, HERE Map will mark it on the map and provide navigation instructions. When you activate LiveSight, the map becomes a circle pointing in the same direction as your phone. You turn around until you are facing the right direction. As you lift the phone, the place is superimposed on the camera image.

In my tests, it has not worked flawlessly. The compass is sometimes a bit off, just enough to confuse LiveSight. It also only worked when I held the phone in portrait mode (which is natural). But I am quite sure, this will get better with each revision. Since the places database is stored on the phone with the map, this work offline as well. Since HERE is getting into indoors location, this will even help you finding a store inside a mall. Killer.


Belkin WeMo gets full IFTTT treatment

by Volker Weber


I have been running a two sensor, three switches WeMo installation for a few months now. My only complaint was that IFTTT only supported one sensor and one switch. This has changed as of last week. Now you can use all your WeMo components.

A week with the BlackBerry Q10

by Volker Weber

BlackBerry Q10

Last week, at BlackBerry Live, I traveled with three devices: the Yoga 11 as my typewriter, the Lumia 920 as my camera, and the Q10 for everything else. Bottom line: if I had to return all BlackBerrys but one, I would keep the Q10. It has all the Z10 goodies, plus a keyboard, and it holds much nicer.

Editor-refuses-to-give-it-back award.

Think your Skype messages get end-to-end encryption? Think again!

by Volker Weber

there's a widely held belief—even among security professionals, journalists, and human rights activists—that Skype somehow offers end-to-end encryption, meaning communications are encrypted by one user, transmitted over the wire, and then decrypted only when they reach the other party and are fully under that party's control. This is clearly not the case if Microsoft has the ability to read URLs transmitted back and forth.

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36 hours travel - before and after

by Volker Weber

This is what life felt before my return from Florida. I was expecting a 16 hour return trip since I could not get on LH465, but United Airlines managed to turn this into 36 hours. In the end I felt like this: traveling in style, but exhausted.

Shortly after I arrived, there was a knock on the door. And a delivery. Not from United.

Two nights at home, and I am my normal self.

No Apple vs. Samsung debate here

by Volker Weber

Samsung earned industry praise for estimating that it expected to ship 10 million units of its flagship Galaxy S4 to carriers in its first month on the market, six months after the same journalists voiced disappointment that Apple had sold "only" 5 million iPhone 5's in its first 3 days.

About twenty years ago, on Fidonet, I founded an echo (a newsgroup, a board) to discuss OS/2 without advocacy. Much as I have done for Windows before. I just cannot stand these debates.

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If you have a Z10, watch these

by Volker Weber

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BlackBerry Q10 headset

by Volker Weber

BlackBerry gave me new earbuds with the Q10. They have the flat cable you may have seen with Monster or Nokia headsets. They are quite good because they do not tangle. While the earbuds themselves fit nicely and comfortably, the sound is quite lacking. Without an ear canal seal, these little buggers can't produce a decent bass.

Travel Infrastructure

by Volker Weber

This is vowe's mobile home base. It needs a single power socket and it supplies power to two mobiles (Lumia 920 and Q10), one notebook (Yoga 11) and an access point. So far it has not raised any airport security eyebrows.

I carry one additional 2.1A power charger, in case a device does not charge from the 750 mA power plugs. The power strip provides an additional two USB ports, and most in-room TVs also have a USB port.

The Nokia batteries not only provide emergency power to the mobiles but they also make the travel router work everywhere. If I find an Ethernet cable, I don't need power next to it. There is one more cable not in the picture: HDMI-HDMI with HDMI-MicroHDMI adapter, so I can watch TV from the Yoga or the Q10.

Fifty Five

by Volker Weber

Photo: Derek H. Pokorny

Nokia introduces a new feature phone platform

by Volker Weber

Nokia is finally getting ready to leave Series 40 feature phones behind. The Asha 501 is the first device built on a new platform based on Nokia's Smarterphone acquisition. Originally the company had higher aspirations with a new operating system developed in their Ulm/Germany lab. When this effort was killed, I did not know what other plans besides Series 40 Nokia had. This has changed today.

The Asha 501 is a low cost phone with very diminutive specs. QVA display, 2G radio for instance. But if you ever used the iconic N9 MeeGo handset, you will recognize a lot of similarities in the UX. What's astonishing here is the agility of its user interface.

This is not a first world handset. It works on spotty 2G networks with as little data as possible. Nokia uses the Xpress browser which transcodes and compresses data on a proxy. If you have a Lumia phone, you can use the same technology to save bandwidth.

The big elephant in the room is Facebook. 90 carriers worldwide are set to provide free access to Facebook on the new Asha 501 phone. This is the Facebook phone that is going to bring a hundred million new users.

Time for a new Lumia

by Volker Weber

Very much looking forward to next week's announcement. I am hoping for a 920 replacement. The front camera on mine has become unusable.

GROUP Business Software AG: Anzeige nach 92 AktG

by Volker Weber

Frankfurt am Main, 08.05.2013 - Der Vorstand der GROUP Business Software AG (ISIN DE0005104509/ WKN 510450) teilt mit, dass nach dem derzeitigen Stand der Jahresabschlussvorbereitungen bei pflichtgemäßem Ermessen ein Verlust in Höhe der Hälfte des Grundkapitals der Gesellschaft angenommen werden muss (§ 92 Abs. 1 AktG).

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YouTube on Nokia Lumia

by Volker Weber


Finally, a decent YouTube app. Now look at this: a download button.

And yes, you have to watch the video.

iPhone leidet. Aber es geht nicht kaputt.

by Volker Weber

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Not so Fitbit

by Volker Weber

This is a Fitbit Zip. You attach it to yourself and it will track your activity. Well, not really. It's just a fancy pedometer, because that is the only activity it understands. It does not understand what is going on when I am on my bike. Sometimes it will record 3000 steps for a short trip and then 1500 for a very long one. It will calculate some derivative data like calories burned or distance traveled, but that's all just secondary.

Pro: it is tiny. You can attach it to your belt or just put it in your pocket.

Con: it's not rechargeable. You need to replace its 2025 battery when depleted.

Do I sound disappointed? Sort of. I am not going to track myself every day. I am just going to use it when I am walking a lot at trade shows or conferences. Would a bracelet like the Fuelband, an UP or the Fitbit Flex be better? Probably not. I would just have to wear an annoying thing on my wrist.

Belkin Fastfit vs. Logitech Ultrathin

by Volker Weber

Belkin hat mir eine neue Tastatur geschickt: FastFit Schutzhülle mit Tastatur. Das Konzept ist ähnlich wie beim Logitech Ultrathin Keyboard. Ein Deckel für das iPad, der eine Tastatur enthält. Man trennt die beiden und stellt das iPad in eine Halterung. Das Bekin Fastfit hat zwei davon, für unterschiedliche Anstellwinkel. Es hat außerdem einen größeren Hub, so dass die Tasten weiter nachgeben.

So weit, so gut. Mein Problem: ich kann auf dem Belkin schlechter schreiben als auf dem iPad Glas. Read on.

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Two ads

by Volker Weber

Compare the two ads. You will like one better.

Wolle Kindle kaufe?

by Volker Weber

Beim Kauf eines Kindle, Kindle Paperwhite, Kindle Fire, Kindle Fire HD oder Kindle Fire HD 8.9 erhalten Sie den Kindle für nur 49 Euro dazu.

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A week with the S4

by Volker Weber

The Q10 was not the only new phone last week. Samsung made the Galaxy S4 available, updating its hugely successful S3. It looks very similar and you have to place them side by side to see the difference. I find it much nicer than people suggested. However, much like an elephant, I like to look at it once in a while, but I would not want to own one. Read on ...

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A week with the Q10

by Volker Weber

I put my hands on a Q10 about three months ago. Actually three and a half months ago. And I was not interested at all. It seemed old, like an old BlackBerry. As much as I love the BlackBerry Bold 9900, its software is dated. And there I had the shiny new Z10, the bPhone. I saw it again two weeks later, in Amsterdam, and was given an extensive demo by BlackBerry. Still, no Q10 for me. The Z10 had my attention. Then I received a note that I was eligible to receive a Dev Alpha C, which is a boxy version of the Q10. Six weeks delivery. Yawn.

And then, last week, I got the final product. First impression: this does not feel at all like the prototypes I had seen. This was good. I put a new SIM into the Q10, because I wanted to use it at the same time as the Z10, going back and forth between the two. Hah! I have not touched the Z10 once.

The Q10 has all the benefits of the Z10. And then some more. Like keyboard shortcuts to jump between messages. You get a physical keyboard and good suggestions. It's easier to wake up, since you don't have to swipe a long screen but a much shorter one. The screen is where your thumb wants to be. Very easy to reach everything on the smaller screen. I have charged the Q10 every second day without a problem. Whenever I write something, I just drop the other phone (Galaxy S4) and get the Q10.

Editor-refuses-to-give-it-back award. Big time.

Huge Java hole in Lotus Notes

by Volker Weber

Java embedded in web pages has, for some time now, been criticised as a security issue and automatic execution of JavaScript code when an email is opened can also have unwanted consequences, with information potentially being shared about when and where the email was read. That's why pretty much all email programs turn off both JavaScript and Java when displaying an HTML email - except IBM's Notes.

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Und hier in deutscher Sprache >

IBM Notes 9 Deutsche Version

by Volker Weber


Das ist eine coole Infographik mit allen Neuigkeiten auf einen Blick. Ich zitiere auch mal die deutsche Pressemitteilung, Titel 'Die E-Mail wird social', hier im Volltext:

Social Business-Angebot … Social Mail-Lösung IBM Notes und Domino Social Edition 9 … Collaboration-Werkzeuge … Social Media, E-Mail, Gruppen oder Blogs … täglich 116 Milliarden Mails … geschätzt 800 Millionen Angestellten … Facebook täglich 2,5 Milliarden Inhalte … Twitter 400 Millionen Tweets pro Tag … Social Business Zeitalter … Social Business-Plattform … Social Mail-Lösung … Collaboration Tool … Social Connectors … Microsoft Outlook … Social-Komponenten … Communitys, Profilinformation … Social Software … Social Business-Bewegung … Social Business … Social-Business-Umgebung … On-premise-Version … SaaS (Software as a Service) … SmartCloud … IBM Social Business-Plattform … Social-Networking … Social Analytics … Social Content Management

Nur für den Fall, dass jemand meint, die Journaille würde aber auch wieder nichts kapieren. Außer dem iPhone.

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I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.


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