Archive for the ‘Technology News’ Category

Support Lounge in the news about WEEE recycling

Wednesday, May 27th, 2009

Simon Aronowitz, Managing Director of Support Lounge features in the front page story of this week’s CRN magazine.

In a story called “WEEE costs stifling smaller businesses“,CRN staff writer Sam Trendall explains that ITACS and its members have been raising issue with the implementation and proposed revisions to the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment.

Both Support Lounge and ITACS are grateful for media focus on this subject.

ITACS slams Government department on electronic recycling

Saturday, May 23rd, 2009

ITACS - Independent Trade Association of Computing Specialists

ITACS, the Independent Trade Association of Computing Specialists has criticised the Department of Business Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) over its implementation and handling of the European electronic waste recycling directives (WEEE). The Government ordered a review following more the introduction of more stringent recycling requirements by Europe.

Speaking to The Register, ITACS Chairman Matthew Woolley said the changes “aren’t good for the small person, costs are too expensive for retailers and the government’s response is ill thought out.”

When supplying new or replacement computer and networking hardware, Support Lounge fulfils its legal obligation by offering to take back the waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) for appropriate recycling. Compared with larger computer retailers, Support Lounge and other independent IT firms face a disproportionately high cost for compliance with the recyling legislation.

Little guy trampled in meaty WEEE overhaul

Skype Founder May Buy Back Company

Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

According to reports in the press, four private equity groups are backing Niklas Zennström, the founder of Skype, for a buy-back of the company from Ebay, who Zennström sold Skype to in 2005. KKR, Warburg Pincus, Providence and Elevation Partners are reportedly offering to stump up the cash.

Since Ebay paid $2.6 billion for the internet communications company, many analysts have argued that the online auction house has failed to capitalise on its purchase an develop the business. Ebay has acknowledged that it overpaid massively for Skype after writing down the value of its investsment by $1.4 billion.

Whilst Skype achieved revenues of $145 million in the last quarter of 2008, the level of profitability at the company has not been so clear due to large running costs and the ability for current parent company Ebay to absorb as its own.

With constant development Voice over IP (VOIP) services from other providers and the availability of business level VOIP systems with real telephone handsets, the long term business objectives of Skype remain a mystery.

Malware Appearing on Apple Mac OS X

Friday, April 17th, 2009

According to The Register, malware and botnets are appearing on Apple’s OS X. This is not simply a proof-of-concept attack, but one that is out there in the wild.

The story quotes an Australian web developer who awoke one morning to find his Mac running at 100% of computer  resource usage with unfamiliar processes pushing it to the limit. The Register goes on to explain that

“The malware is surreptitiously included in copies of Apple’s iWork 09 productivity suite and Adobe’s Photoshop CS4 that are distributed on warez sites. Intego said three months ago more than 20,000 people had downloaded the rogue installers.”

We have recently heard reports of viruses or fake software turning up on Apple iMacs, and this story would seem to confirm it. Perhaps the days of Apple computers being resilient to viruses and attack are coming to an end.

Tiscali in trouble, customers face uncertainty

Tuesday, March 10th, 2009


Tiscali, the ISP, had its shares suspended on the Italian stock exchange yesterday after warning it will not be able to meet interest payments, according to the Telegraph.

Over recent years the ISP has acquired several established ISPs in the UK. Tiscali then proceeded to reduce the quality of both the broadband and customer service that the customers of those ISPs, such as Pipex and Nildram, received. Both Pipex and Nildram previously had reputations as high quality or niche providers.

Tiscali had sought to sell its UK arm to another ISP and had been in talks with Sky but apparently was seeking more than Sky was willing to offer. The Telegraph puts Tiscali’s desired price at £500m whilst The Register puts the price at £600m for Tiscali’s 1.7 million UK subscribers. The Telegraph states that Sky was only prepared to pay £250m whilst The Register reckons Sky would pay no more than £450m. In today’s market with low margins on broadband connections, such prices are just plain silly if based solely on the customer list and not on Tiscali’s UK infrastructure.

Just last night on the first show in the new series of the Gadget Show on Channel Five, Tiscali’s telephone, TV and internet package was recommended as the best buy. Clearly the Gadget Show was only thinking about price and not quality of service. Whilst the Gadget Show may encourage new sign-ups to Tiscali, the recent news about the company may drive customers to request a MAC code and migrate away to another ISP before their broadband is cut off.

The Telegraph speculates that Sky may be waiting for Tiscali to enter administration before offering to buy the customer base at a discounted price. Such a move may be the only sensible course of action. Sky is attempting to maximise its market share, but not at any price.

If you are currently a subscriber to Tiscali but are looking for reliable broadband with excellent support, please call us on 0800 0199 340.

Fujitsu folding laptop – the future of computing?

Thursday, November 23rd, 2006

T3 have got their hands on Fujitsu‘s new Ultra Mobile PC (UMPC).

Their pictures indicate that the device will fold up to fit in a large pocket:

PS3: “Must-Have” technology – Riots & robbery

Monday, November 20th, 2006

What do you do when you desperately want the latest new games console, but don’t fancy the idea of lining up for hours in a queue full of othe people?

Answer: Start a riot apparently, or maybe try and steal your Playstation 3 (PS3).

Others had different ideas, such as the folks from who have been waiting a long time to smash a new PS3 in front of the queuing public:

Guardian cracks new biometric passport

Monday, November 20th, 2006

It was only a matter of time. The new biometric passport, designed to protect us from evil people with bombs in their shoes, has been cracked by the Guardian newspaper. (Discussion as to why the left-leaning newspaper exposed this scandal before the Daily Mail is for another time.)

The newspaper quotes Lukas Grunwald, founder of DN-Systems Enterprise Solutions in Germany:

“If you can read the chip, then you can clone it,” he says. “You could use this to clone a passport that would exploit the system to illegally enter another country.” (We did not clone any of our passport chips on the assumption that to do so would be illegal.)

BT to buy Plus Net

Thursday, November 16th, 2006

In a move that has been anticipated by broadband industry watchers, according to ZDNet, BT is to pay £67m for Plus Net, one of the few remaining independent Internet Service Providers (ISPs). The CRM computer system which Plus Net credits with its service standards may be the real prize that BT is buying, rather than the ISPs 200,000 subscribers.

Plus Net was once considerered to be one the superior internet providers, however customers have noticed the standard of service slip of late. Incidents such as the accidential deletion of 700Gb of customers’ emails certainly haven’t helped the company’s reputation.

Will customers stay with Plus Net once the handover is complete?

Windows Vista won’t need anti-virus says co-President

Sunday, November 12th, 2006

Can Microsoft Windows Vista run virus-free? The answer is “Yes”, according to Jim Allchin, co-President of the Redmond firm. Zdnet, citing betanews, reports Allchin’s claim that his 11 year old son has been using a Vista machine sans anti-virus without trouble.

Meanwhile, some 3rd party security software vendors such as McAfee and Symantec have voiced concern over the Patchguard kernel protection technology introduced by Microsoft in the new operation system, claiming that the new system effectively locks them out of providing anti-virus solutions for Vista. However, as TheRegister reports, other vendors such as Kaspersky Labs have no issue with the new technology.

Will Windows Vista eliminate computer viruses? Care to place any money on that?

UPDATE: 13/11/06

Jim Allchin has posted an entry at where he explains that some quotes were taken out of context. One wonders what the online stories got right – his son is 7 years old, not 11, and he was only using the example of his son to demonstrate that in certain restricted conditions (i.e. a locked down PC), Vista can operate happily without ant-virus software. As for the idea that Vista won’t need anti-virus software, says Mr Allchin:

“I want to be clear, most users will use some form of antivirus software, and that will be appropriate for their scenarios. In fact, Windows Security Center, a great feature in Windows Vista, specifically encourages the use of antivirus software.”