28 November 2011

Doubting Netflix Will Be Acquired

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+John Cook over at Geekwire did a blog post days ago mulling around the chance of Netflix becoming acquisition bait.

Will Netflix become acquisition bait?

I think that Netflix would only be willing to sell for a 50% over market cap premium price at minimum. That means, even as it has fallen BAAAD. Netflix is still a over 5 billion dollars acquisition. A high-risk acquisition very depending on key executives staying in the company and for the company and with a at the moment damaged brand. So, my educated guess is no. You would need to be crazy to try to buy Netflix. Unless you have a video streaming division that can absorb it completely and got the power to be able to deal with content owners without being at disadvantage.

The only ones able to do that at that price would be Amazon and Microsoft. But would they be willing to do it, considering they didn't went all the way for the cheaper and easier to manage Hulu?

In the case of everyone else, most would not really be able to handle such a big transaction or are just not able to pay for it.

And just to keep record of it. This is not the first time i have written on this. Had already posted on it. In specific about the idea of Amazon buying Netflix.

While things have gone for the worse for Netflix right now. In the case of Amazon i do maintain what i said at my post from September.

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09 November 2011

A Quick Analysis On Those Apparently Interested In Buying WebOS From HP

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Reuters got a report earlier this week about HP mulling over the chance of selling WebOS. Sale, HP thinks could go for "hundreds of millions of dollars". And there is a unconfirmed list of those possibly interested in acquiring WebOS that is quite interesting on its own right

Exclusive- HP weighing sale of webOS unit  at Reuters

It cannot be known what kind of terms HP would want to sell WebOS if it is indeed true that they want to sell and that they will sell it. But what i can tell you, is some of the reasons why each of the names in the unconfirmed list of those wanting to buy WebOS, would indeed want to buy it.

Who are in that list of WebOS interested parties?

Amazon, IBM, Oracle, RIM and Intel.

Now lets look at why they could be possibly interested in WebOS:

Amazon

Bezos could want WebOS as a bet on the future of the Kindle Line and as a way of having their own software base they can be fully in control and that could easily replace the modded Android 2.1 base they are apparently using in the Kindle Fire. And since Amazon got their own App Store separated and isolated from not just Android Market, but all Android App usage conventions. It would not matter or even be noticeable to most of Amazon users if they changed their Amazon OS from one being based in a modded Android 2.1, to one based on WebOS 3.0.

As a plus, they are also would be safe from any Android legal fees or IP problems.

IBM

The most mystifying name of the list is definitely IBM. What could they possibly want with WebOS is unclear. But it is possible that they would want to have it for its IP Value if it comes with some good patents or access to the palm patent treasure chest in HP's power. Or they could be using it as Console OS for their enterprise offerings. With the first reason being a lot more likely than this later one.

Oracle

Most interesting name in the list. Because of HP hurdles with Oracle. Many speculate about WebOS being a possible way to repair the HP-Oracle relations via Meg Withman, by allowing Oracle to have a good option to buy it.

Doing so would also represent two possible big gains for Oracle:

1.- They gain more valuable IP and Patents

Which they can use to secure a even bigger win against Google. Than the one they are going to get. As there is a very slim chance of Oracle losing against Google in course. But getting a hold of WebOS IP and Patents could be a boost for the negotiations when they win.

2.- Orale Solaris gets a WebOS remake.

Can you imagine what Solaris could gain from WebOS or vice versa? I can. And the idea of it is quite enticing. As it would make it not just an OK enterprise OS. But an excellent enterprise OS that Oracle could then be able to use in anything they wanted.

I think that Oracle owning WebOS is actually the scenario that got the potential to have some of the most interesting repercussions if it happened.

Intel

Most obvious name on the list. At least in regards of why would they want it.

Intel at one point had Moblin. It was looking up OK. But then WebOS appeared, and it made Moblin look like crap in comparison. And no longer exciting.

Then other problems like the latest Maemo looking up fine and LiMo trying to play their own righteous game didn't helped either. Later on, Intel convinced Nokia of merging Moblin with Maemo in what would be known as MeeGo.

Exciting, until Nokia realized that MeeGo would never ever be able to put up a fight against the big Smartphone OSes. At the time they decided to go with Windows Phone. And Nokia pretty much said Intel:

"I might be still using MeeGO here and there, experimenting with it. But i think i will do it on my own. You can still do whatever you want though"

Which Intel took as a clear message of having to reinvent their bet for an OS, yet again. This time by convincing the LiMo Foundation to pair up with them. Adding up to MeeGo whatever input they had. And with that, Tizen was born.

Generating yet another reboot for Intel efforts. One that is not likely to become anything interesting or useful until the second half of 2012, if all goes well. With slim chances of being anything more than that. Just another interesting OS from Intel very few will use.

Intel owning WebOS could fix their struggles once and for all. They would then just could grab WebOS 3.0 and work on the 4.0 version by adding whatever makes sense from MeeGo and LiMo to it. An idea that could do actually turn into a very powerful and versatile OS. Without having to stop offering the current WebOS 3.0 and also instantly gaining a better ecosystem, with a good IP and Patents to go with it.

RIM

When HP went through their recent Apothekalypse. The company that won the most of it was RIM. As it gave them a breather of relief by no longer having to worry about a competitor they had been accused of copying because of the Playbook OS. And because it was the competitor that was offering the most similar products to them and the one with the most similar strategy.

Not that it has served them much given how slow their whole strategy has been. Even considering how they are getting a beat up by Wall Street, Analyst and the U.S.A press and blogosphere on a daily basis.

RIM owning WebOS would make all the sense in the world. As they were the one company that must had own it already. If it had not been because somehow they failed to acquire Palm when they could and should have done sot. A mistake that has cost them dearly.

RIM owning WebOS could be seen by the Management as correcting a mistake, saving face, strengthening IP and Patents and solidifying their bet for the future.

Since with WebOS, they now could offer all kind of new products beyond the ones they offer by having a even bigger and better platform to build on. Making sure that no matter what, RIM gets to be in the mobile device business for the foreseeable future. Or at least, that would be the idea.

Conclusions

If HP decides to sell and boy if they should do sell, as there is no way to save WebOS for them after they have tainted it so bad. The repercussions to that could be quite interesting no matter who gets it. As long as it is not IBM. That scenario don't points to anything but boring.

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05 November 2011

VMware Supremacy To End In 2012

VMware Logo

Is what I respond to Ars Technica article asking the following question:

Is VMware's dominance of the virtualization market under threat?

After they observed the following info:

“A new survey seems to show that VMware’s iron grip on the enterprise virtualization market is loosening, with 38% of businesses planning to switch vendors within the next year due to licensing models changes”

As I  think it is very possible that by the end of 2012, vmware could pass from having 65% of the paid Virtualization market it is said it has right now to 50% or less.

I put Microsoft for 25% by then thanks the how incredible Windows 8 Server is positioning to be and ho big the updates to Hyper-V, App-V and Med-V are also lining up to be, Citrix for 20% thanks to their new repositioning to grab a slice of the cloud market after buying cloud.com and their clear change of attitude the past few months and 5% going to Red Hat and other smaller players.

The good news for vmware is that since the Virtualization market is probably going to still grow twice as big in the same time as it extends to mobile devices. They still get to keep growing and dominate as the market leader. Just that they will be losing their previous undisputed supremacy. Given I remember a survey from early 2009 that had them at 90% of the paid virtualization market.

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03 November 2011

Sony To Lose $1.15 billion USD This Fiscal Year

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After issuing their financial results . Sony has said they forecast to lose 1.15 billion USD for the entire fiscal year.  This after predicting they would be making $768 million in profit for it in June.

Yet the bad will probably continue for Sony. As there is not really a chance for things to get that much better for Sony next fiscal year. Unless they have got a miracle with their name that is. Why is that?

  • - They just had to spend on buying out Ericcson out of what previously was SonyEriccson and now could be known as Sony Mobile. In a desperate attempt to try not slipping away in the smartphone game. As they have faltered for the past 3 years.
  • - PS3 sales continue to be lukewarm. And that is thanks to the Nintendo Wii faltering.
  • - PS Vita will be Japan-Only this fall.
  • - Sony new device bets like their offering for the Google TV and their Slates offerings tanked badly.
  • - Samsung and Vizio will probably continue to bite into Sony marketshare in the HDTV space. As Sony has faltered badly in this sector for the past 3 years.
  • - Samsung and ASUS will probably continue to bite into Sony marketshare in the laptop space. As Sony has faltered badly in this sector for the past 3 years

=  Sony may not lose over a a billion USD next fiscal year, but things still don't look any good at all for them. Hoping they at the least manage to break even if things do continue to be go bad for them.

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01 November 2011

About Ubuntu 11.10

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I have more than dabbled with Linux Distros for the past 10 years. Checking them out on a yearly basis to see in what state they are compared to Windows, both in a out-of-the-box experience and a Power User experience. Prior to 5 years ago, checking the distros out was a pain and it required quite a huge lot of patience. From 5 years to now it has become a lot easier. And now i even check out the advancements of 5 different ones:

Suse, Ubuntu, JoliOS, ChromeOS and MoonOS.

Just to leave it very clear that i am quite familiar with Linux Distros and its progression in the desktop. I always check out each distro on and off for a month after it comes out on my main machine.

Ubuntu 11.10, codenamed Oneiric Ocelot is the latest from Canonical. And while it don't brings that much progress from 11.04, it still shows a clear progression of thinking that should be fully delivered with 12.04 that will be a Long Term Support edition.

Ubuntu 11.10 left me feeling a bit confused about Canonical. Because i see they are becoming more and more arrogant with each release. And in turn more and more obtuse in their thinking. In a way that can only be equaled to Mozilla this whole year.

That is not to say there are not a lot of well thought things in 11.10, is just that it is now transforming in this strange OS X and Windows 7 mashup. With OS X being the most copied OS on how Ubuntu is looking and behaving. Because now the user got less direct control of the OS. All thanks to how imposed the Unity bar in Ubuntu is now. While you can still escape from it, doing so is no longer straightforward. And forget about thinking it is because it works extremely well. It is still very error prone and what is worse, Ubuntu with Unity Bar with 3D graphics and full effects now consumes as much resources as a Windows 7 Ultimate with Aero and full effects. And if you are in a Laptop and if you install it, expect Ubuntu 11.10 to also have less battery life than Windows 7.

But the truly worse parts of Ubuntu are the redesigns to things that were functionally better before, like the Software Center. That was a lot cleaner looking and easier to engage with in the previous version than as it is now.

There are other full reviews that take a really deep look to Ubuntu 11.10, and one i recommend is the always dependable one from Ars Technica. That while phrased differently, do expose several of my own points.

http://arstechnica.com/open-source/reviews/2011/10​/desktop-dreams-ubuntu-1110-reviewed.ars

And so does +Jason Perlow in a recent post where he actually goes to say that Ubuntu 11.10 new quirks makes him very angry.

http://www.zdnet.com/blog/perlow/why-ubuntu-1110-f​ills-me-with-rage/19103


So, that means is just not me, a Windows power user first who is a bit confused by Canonical ways. But that also those that are Linux Distro power users first seem to be confused with it. 

Long Story Short is that i don't recommend you to bother trying to engage with Ubuntu 11.10 with Unity yet. Classic Gnome version is still the way to go. And just to make your life easier, If you want to try out Ubuntu, do it installing it within Windows via Wubi. As that also makes it less error prone than a clean install and way easier to get rid of it if you don't like it. And don't worry, if you think you are missing out by not using the Unity bar, just install Gnome Do and Docky in the Ubuntu Classic Gnome version. As after all, that is what the Unity Bar is clearly based on. 

On Canonical Future Strategy

Pretty much saying that they want to take on Windows 8 by also going multi-device. And that their pitch is being a good alternative to Android. With an expected start for this strategy as soon as in one year:

Good luck with that. I don't see a way for them to make any noticeable inroads there in 2012.

Linkage

Homepage Ubuntu

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On The Kinect Effect

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Before the Kinect Camera appeared in the Xbox 360 as a ready to buy product, there were many ways to call what this kind of camera did. With one my favorites ways being "Deep Viewing". As an applied concept, The Kinect Camera is not at all new. It existed as far back as the 90's from what i remember. But the concept cameras that did the same were usually 10 times bigger and 50 times more expensive.

Fast forward to now and if you want a camera with similar functions outside of the kinect, you will be seeing at cameras that are still 5 times bigger and 10 times more expensive. And none of them coming close to having the software sophistication that the Kinect has or a smart Ambient Microphone that is in sync with the what the camera sees. Both being two of the several things that Microsoft developed and added to the Kinect Camera when they had it as a project codenamed NATAL.

But even then, The Kinect Camera is now incredibly being sold standalone for just $199 USD. Or just as an added $99 USD cost if you get it bundled with a new Xbox 360.

Given how easy is to forget how incredible that actually is. I thought it deserved to be highlighted.

At almost one year after the Kinect debuted for the world to see and with over 15 million of them being out in the world, the smallest revolution it brought was in Gaming. As it brought even bigger revolutions in media, device and computer user interactions that can now be counted in the hundreds of hacked up projects.

And to start celebrating that, the Xbox Team has released a new site to showcase some of the things that the Kinect has accomplished and what it could accomplish as the software it runs with gets better and smarter. That in turn will mean even more impressive developments using Kinect beyond the Xbox. With the Video embed-linked in this post meant as a concept of what the future of the kinect could get to be.

But i must say that as awesome the video the Xbox Team did, it is better to have a look at the new site to take the video in better context. And see how it is being used right now. But make no mistake, every scenario presented in the video you can watch in this post,  minus the playing of the classical version of "Where is my mind" from the Pixies with invisible instruments. Are all real scenarios that have already been achieved

Finally, after this video was released, Microsoft confirmed they would be releasing a Commercial Development SDK for the Kinect in early 2012.

Linkage

Kinect-Effect

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