Amazon Cloud Drive App Won’t Work On Mac OS X If Mac Users Have Disabled Java, Also Supports Windows

So, I notice Amazon has just launched Amazon Cloud Drive Desktop app so Amazon users will be able to upload their digital files to Amazon Cloud Drive through their computers without the need of opening up a web browser.  Usually, Amazon users have to visit Amazon Cloud Drive’s web destination before they can upload their digital files.  Unfortunately, I’m unable to test out Amazon Cloud Drive Desktop app on Mac OS X since it utilizes Java.  OK, not because Mac OS X cannot use Java, but it’s that I had disabled Java on Mac OS X for security reason.  Mac OS X has been targeted by Trojans, malicious programs that design to steal and capture sensitive information (and installing backdoor programs onto) from users’ computers, and these Trojans exploit Mac OS X through Java enabled applications.  One good example would be the Flashback Trojan.  Anyhow, users can also install Amazon Cloud Drive Desktop app on Windows.


The Kindle Fire isn’t the Apple iPad

Please take heed of this specific warning:  This article wasn’t written by the founder of this blog (i.e., Vinh Nguyen).  This article had been submitted by a contributor, Olivia Lennox, and so the point of view, belief, and other values profess in this article might not be the same values that holds true.  If there are links within this article, please use to check to see if the link is indeed free of virus, trojan, and malware.  Also, you might want to use Google and other well known online resources to validate the contents of such links.  Enjoy!

Kindle Fire: Out of the Box

Image by Brian Sawyer via Flickr

The first five million or so customers now have their new Kindle Fire from Amazon. Over half of those have already played with their new gadget while the rest are being gift wrapped for Christmas. Will those people wish for an iPad instead?

Although people keep comparing them, the two are not really related enough to be an either/or purchase, but the price of the Kindle brings the tablet within the financial reach of most.

The Fire is going to set many people’s Christmas alight, but it’s what the computer doesn’t do that will disappoint so many.

Where’s the Fire’s Camera?

The recipient of your gift will want to know where the camera is. Sorry folks, there isn’t one. You might want to Skype with your new toy, but you will have to wait for the next model. The lack of a camera shouldn’t stop the purchase as everyone has a phone with a camera.

The iPad isn’t really set for camera work, either, though at least it has one. The megapixels are too low for good photography, but they will be enough to take some simple photographs if all you want to do is email them to friends or post on your favorite social media site.

All iPad owners will need a separate iPhone because holding your iPad to take shots will make you look foolish. Try imagining it: a camera that large.

Where’s the Microphone?

Looking for the mike? You won’t find one on the Kindle Fire. If you thought this could take over as your business tool, forget it. The option to take short voice notes or dictate an attachment to your essential email just won’t happen. You will still need to carry around your digital voice recorder. That’s another failing to go with the lack of Skype capability.

Where’s the Rest of the Screen?

You know as soon as you open the package that the screen is so much smaller on the Fire than on the iPad. If you use your calculator app you will find you have 21 square inches against the iPad’s more generous 45. That is less than half the viewing space, for the failing mathematicians out there.

It does give you a much smaller and more portable gadget. You can carry it anywhere and it will fit in a surprisingly high number of pockets, but this might make it the next best thieves’ target.

How the smaller screen will affect your game playing is down to your preferences, but those on public transport may prefer the smaller model. It will be interesting to see if Apple launches a 7 inch model like the Fire and the smaller Samsung or whether Amazon goes for a 10 inch screen first.

I Can’t Find My 3G

Like the Nook tablet, with the Fire you don’t get the option of 3G or, what the latest gadget people require, 4G. You will only be able to connect online via Wi-Fi with the Fire. This shouldn’t cause a problem in most stationary uses, but for those roaming in the back seat of an auto, the lack of 3G might prove costly. Wi-Fi has become free almost everywhere, so at least your 3G data costs will be low.

The Difference Is In the Price

It’s not really fair to compare the two toys/computers. While some will argue that the difference is in the availability of apps for the iPad, that bridge is closing fast. Soon that won’t even be a consideration.

Whichever model you choose, you will have to battle with the brand’s parent company who insists that you trade exclusively through them. That is Amazon’s selling point; everything is available at a click and for those replacing their Kindle reader with the Fire, as long as they aren’t outside in blazing sun, the experience may be improved.

The lack of GPS in the Fire shouldn’t be a deterrent, but the lack of gigabytes under the hood might be, so you will be forced to use Amazon’s cloud experience. (How long before they start charging for that, we wonder?)

The price difference will be the tightest call. At just $199, almost anyone can buy a Kindle Fire while the $500 to $650 required for an iPad might be a bigger stretch. Perhaps the answer is to stop seeing the Fire as an iPad competitor and buy a Samsung tablet (with better use of the screen, Android and apps) instead.

Olivia Lennox is a writer, bookworm, and gadget-obsessed ebook fiend. She loves digital books and the freebies made possible by paperless reading, but hasn’t quite been convinced to sell her paperback library just yet.

Please take heed of this specific warning:  This article wasn’t written by the founder of this blog (i.e., Vinh Nguyen).  This article had been submitted by a contributor, Olivia Lennox, and so the point of view, belief, and other values profess in this article might not be the same values that holds true.  If there are links within this article, please use to check to see if the link is indeed free of virus, trojan, and malware.  Also, you might want to use Google and other well known online resources to validate the contents of such links.  Enjoy!

Online Stores Such As Amazon Might Be Eventual Winners In Retail Battles If The Law Allows

English: Amazon Kindle wordmark.

Image via Wikipedia

Some major brick and mortar retailers are worrying how Amazon could best them at their own games by rolling out Price Check app that help customers use their stores as showrooms.  Amazon could always allow customers to see better deals on Amazon through Price Check app.  Furthermore, Amazon could possibly allow customers to purchase products directly on Price Check app, but I don’t know if this is truly possible since I haven’t yet tested the app.  I just say Amazon could do it if they want to.  If they have done so, then that’s exactly my point.  I think this could potentially cripple retailer stores.

Apple Store, North Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL

Image via Wikipedia

I think Amazon is creating a new trend where more online stores will copy Amazon promotional approach.  We may never know, but if this specific approach becomes so effective, major brick and mortar retailer stores could lose big time.  Perhaps, in the near future, only true online retailer stores (i.e., as big as Amazon or even bigger) could afford to open brick and mortar stores so customers could experience the wall garden experience.

My use of the phrase wall garden is to compare what I mentioned to how Steve Jobs executed his business philosophy.  That is, Steve Jobs preferred in having Apple owned the hardware and software platforms through and through, and he went even further by skipping the third party retailer distributors and built the many brick and mortar Apple stores.  I think the successful existence of brick and mortar Apple stores might be an excellence model for online stores to create the wall garden experience Steve Jobs adamantly worshipped.

I think sooner or later, some smart online stores might program their apps to allow the lowering of product prices on the fly so customers will save money more and the online stores will make more money at a faster rate.  Of course, the algorithms for such apps need to be super smart, otherwise online stores could sell products way below the profitable point and end up lose more money than they would want.  Brick and mortar retailer stores might see this as constant price wars.  Obviously, I don’t think brick and mortar retailer stores can beat this kind of tactics, because such physical stores need to have ways to monitor product prices of online competitors and then change prices in the moments.

I can also see mom and pop stores that serve local communities lose out to online stores if people love to frequently use mobile apps to compare products at physical stores against online stores.  Such phenomenon will drive mom and pop stores out of business.  Perhaps, the future can only embrace brick and mortar stores that truly have big online presences.

Which Tablet Should You Buy On Black Friday?

Steve Jobs while introducing the iPad in San F...

Image via Wikipedia

I have a friend who concerns about should he buy an iPad 2 or some other tablets on Black Friday.  The truth about tablet is not all about the hardware!  It’s great to have great hardware on a tablet if one decides to play cutting edge games on a tablet.  My bet is that most hardcore gamers rather play their games on consoles and computers than on tablets.  My friend definitely isn’t a hardcore gamer, and so I don’t think his wanting to buy a tablet is for gaming.

Kindle Fire Large Image Has Some rights reserved by Courtbean On Flickr.comI figure my friend wants a tablet for other reasons and not for playing cutting edge games.  These reasons might be watching movies on Netflix, listening to music, using apps, playing casual games, reading news, checking emails, keeping notes, reading ebooks, and other trivial stuffs.  Anyhow, I explain to my friend that he should get a tablet according to his content needs, and so should you!

Let say if you have so much contents that are tying to iTunes already, and you also want to use iTunes Match and iCloud, then I suggest you buy an iPad 2.  If you have mostly Amazon contents or wanting to invest in Amazon contents such as buying Amazon ebooks, then I suggest you check out Kindle Fire.  Of course, there are other tablets besides the two that I’d mentioned, but none of those tablets could beat the two that I mentioned in regarding to contents.  For your information though, other tablets might have beefier hardware specifications than iPad 2 and Kindle Fire, and iPad 2 has beefier hardware specification than Kindle Fire.

I hope my friend will buy a tablet that fits his content needs, and so should you!  Good luck on finding a super deal for a tablet on Black Friday!

Steve Jobs’ Biography Is Hot Off Amazon

Steve Jobs’ biography is out today, and ebook readers can grab it at Amazon.  Amazon’s product description for Steve Jobs’ biography is below:

Based on more than forty interviews with Jobs conducted over two years—as well as interviews with more than a hundred family members, friends, adversaries, competitors, and colleagues—Walter Isaacson has written a riveting story of the roller-coaster life and searingly intense personality of a creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.
At a time when America is seeking ways to sustain its innovative edge, and when societies around the world are trying to build digital-age economies, Jobs stands as the ultimate icon of inventiveness and applied imagination. He knew that the best way to create value in the twenty-first century was to connect creativity with technology. He built a company where leaps of the imagination were combined with remarkable feats of engineering.
Although Jobs cooperated with this book, he asked for no control over what was written nor even the right to read it before it was published. He put nothing off-limits. He encouraged the people he knew to speak honestly. And Jobs speaks candidly, sometimes brutally so, about the people he worked with and competed against. His friends, foes, and colleagues provide an unvarnished view of the passions, perfectionism, obsessions, artistry, devilry, and compulsion for control that shaped his approach to business and the innovative products that resulted.
Driven by demons, Jobs could drive those around him to fury and despair. But his personality and products were interrelated, just as Apple’s hardware and software tended to be, as if part of an integrated system. His tale is instructive and cautionary, filled with lessons about innovation, character, leadership, and values.

About the Author
Walter Isaacson, the CEO of the Aspen Institute, has been chairman of CNN and the managing editor of Time magazine. He is the author of Benjamin Franklin: An American Life and of Kissinger: A Biography, and the coauthor of The Wise Men: Six Friends and the World They Made. He lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife and daughter.

The print length is around 656 pages long.  It is a sizable ebook.  Share your comments below this post so everyone will know what you think about Steve Jobs’ biography.


Price War Is Underway For Contents? Amazon Lowers The Price Of More Than 30 Verizon Phones To A Penny Each

iPhone 4S has jolted the smartphone market with its thundering entrance.  This prompts Apple’s adversaries to vamp up their efforts in taking down iPhone’s domination.  Amazon has made the first move by selling more than 30 Verizon phones for a penny each?

Obviously, the deal is that customers have to sign a contract for a penny a phone deal.  Nonetheless, this kind of deal is rather sweet, because a penny is something everyone hates to keep around.  People rather bundle up their pennies into sticks of pennies so they can haul such pennies to banks to cash out green papers, but some people feel repulsive at the idea for they think it’s somewhat embarrassing.  OK, did I digress?

Anyhow, I think Amazon has an interest in seeing Apple’s trademark products such as iPhone wane in popularity.  As long Apple keeps on gaining ground in the smartphone and tablet markets, the more Amazon will be scared for Amazon has to face with the possibility that more customers will shop for ebooks and music and movies and magazines on Apple’s platforms only.  Amazon is once again up to its old trick by selling things much much cheaper than its competitors could ever have done so, under any circumstance.  I think Amazon hopes this will eventually weed out all competitors in price wars.  This time around, Amazon means business in the context of a price war on contents.

In summary, at the agonies of Apple’s adversaries, for the limited time Amazon will sell over 30 Verizon’s phones for a penny each.  This move might prevent people to become Apple’s iPhone 4S customers, because they will be bind to the contracts under Verizon’s phones.  I doubt Apple will cut price, because Apple loves to think it’s above the fray — price war won’t be happening here folks! Nonetheless, Amazon might eventually give Apple a scare anyway unless Apple’s charm is too hard to beat!  Even cutting prices to a penny cannot win the day?

For your information:  According to PCMag, iPhone and iPad aren’t part of the deal, but Verizon’s top of the line phones will be part of the deal after all!  PCMag points out that even Motorola Droid Bionic is under the deal.  This phone has super fast Internet access and dual core processor.  Its original price was $299 with two year contract, but now it’s a penny with a contract.  So on and so on…