Trusted Reviews’ US reporter Chris Smith weighs in on early MacBook reviews, Jawbone’s ill-timed stumble, HTC’s One big misstep and… shock horror… Star Wars fans being ripped off again.
New MacBook is both ahead of and behind the times
I’ve been reading through the Apple MacBook 2015 reviews, almost begging them to convince me its merits outweigh its limitations. Indeed, some of them seem very forgiving of the device’s limitations, understandably mesmerised by the allure of the thing.
For me, in the cold hard of day, there's one inescapable truth none of the reviews have been able to rationalise. Regardless of the price, the death of MagSafe and the dispensing of other ports, there's just no getting past that power compromise.
Wired’s summing up nailed the reason why I can’t jump on board. “If the new MacBook lasted a day and a half, I’d happily forgive the muscular deficiencies. If it were more powerful, nine or ten hours of battery would be a killer number. But when the MacBook is more expensive and less powerful than the Air, and even doesn’t last as long, what’s it for?”
The new MacBook might be the future of the laptop, but right now it's stuck in that Never-Neverland of being just as far behind the times as it is ahead of them.
A tough break for Jawbone comes at the worst possible time
On the eve of the Apple Watch pre-order window opening, Jawbone announced the long-delayed UP3 is almost ready to ship. Good news, right? Well, actually it’s pretty terrible news and it couldn't come at a worse time.
The wearable pioneer has failed to resolve the manufacturing issues that caused the delay in the first place and, as a result, it won’t be waterproof, just splash proof.
Read more: 6 Best fitness trackers for 2015
The UP3 seemed hugely impressive on launch, with improved motion sensors, a heartrate monitor and a waterproof design. It was a real coming of age for the company. Now that impressive trio of improvements is down to a duo and Jawbone is in a mess.
What is it with the fitness tracker makers cocking up at a time when they really need to be at their best? Fitbit has also tainted itself with its inability to resolve skin irritation issues with its recent releases.
Are they deliberately saying: “You know what guys, maybe you should give these smartwatches a try after all?”
Star Wars fans get shafted again
Just how many Republican Credits have loyal Star Wars fans forked over for various versions down the years? VHS, VHS re-mastered, VHS special edition, DVD, Blu-ray? Now Disney is asking for another £60 to buy them digitally. With every new format comes a new and expensive release of the trilogy (and those other three) and, as usual, it’s the most loyal fans that are made to spend more again.
If we lived in a fairytale galaxy far, far away I’d argue it was time to make these movies public property and sign them over to on-demand services for everyone to enjoy. Or at least offer some kind of digital discount for fans who bought the Blu-rays?
Instead, Force fans, it’s probably wise to start saving for the 4K Ultimate Special Edition coming in a couple of years.
How to lose friends and alienate people, by HTC
Ok, guys, if you’re thinking of starting your own smartphone conglomerate, here’s what you don’t do: Launch an underwhelming flagship device, only to follow it up two months later with a version featuring everything the first device was missing… and then skip launching it anywhere west of China.
Samsung must be laughing its proverbials off right now…
Google’s free roaming contracts would change the mobile world
So Google is reportedly working out deals with international partners, like Three in the UK, to allow customers of its forthcoming mobile network to roam free of charge. SOLD! Three does a great job with its Feel At Home contracts in the UK, but the US market is primed for a similar shake up. Personally speaking, it’d be great to just land at Heathrow turn on my phone and continue life as normal.