Who do you trust with your data?

Thanks to the cloud, there’s basically no reason to lose important data ever again. Photos, phone numbers, videos, music – not only can you now store it out there in the ether but, in doing so, you open it up to a whole new world of possibilities, collaboration and accessibility.

But on the flipside, it feels like privacy concerns have never been higher around all this data.

So, unless you want to drastically compromise what you can do with those digital assets, you face a choice – which provider do you trust the most with your data? And how do you decide? (more…)

November 21st, 2012

iPad Mini: early observations

Having owned at least one of every generation of iPad so far, what is the iPad Mini like?

  • It’s smaller, obviously. But the only time it really feels it is when trying to enter text. You can manage quick notes if you use the ‘split keyboard’ trick and it’s light enough to make it practical unlike on the full size iPad.
  • When I first got a Kindle, it felt like a breakthrough because it fit in my coat pocket. This is in the same league when it comes to size and weight.
  • God I miss 3G on this so much more than I did on the iPad 3. Using it more and in more portable situations exposes the pain of setting up a personal hotspot on my phone every time I want to connect.
  • Get a Retina Display and 4G in this and you have my (and many other people’s) perfect iPad. (more…)

November 19th, 2012

MaxTB on Wired: Fitbit needs to watch its ‘quantified’ self

Rebooting my wristwatch

My latest for Wired UK, considering whether the iPod Nano could simply start to build in quantified self features and make life tough for Fitbit and co.

There’s another device out there that sits in that price point and has already started ticking some of the boxes that would push things forward — Apple’s iPod Nano, already a close friend to many exercise fiends. It already features a pedometer and, if you think about how even Apple has encouraged the move toward wearing this as a watch (right on top of a key pulse point…) another part of the puzzle slips into place.

Read the full article on Wired UK or find my other Wired posts here.

August 1st, 2012

Looking Beneath the Surface

Initial thoughts on the Microsoft Surface tablets, announced yesterday (read up at The Verge.) Warning: There are some generalisations ahead but I think they are ones we can all live with… #perksofnotbeingafulltimejourno


Firstly: you aren’t going to buy a surface alongside your iPad – until it needs upgrading. I’ve long thought Apple is running to a 2 year product cycle (if you’re on iPhone 3G, you’d upgrade to the 4/ if iPhone 3GS, it’s the 4S) but there’s a catch with this; it’s largely perpetuated by the next Apple release, not those from external vendors.

I think it’s fair to say, if you just bought a The New iPad, you likely aren’t in the market for this.

June 19th, 2012

5 ways to turn distraction into inspiration

Despite everything else that has changed in the workplace over the years, the ability to have good ideas is still the differentiator that can launch your pitch, project or business onto another level.

But with access to funnels of information that previous generations couldn’t imagine, today’s challenge has become less about attrition of stimuli than good management.

Our whole media and marketing scene – both traditional and social, both PRs and journalists – is ensconced in this dilemma; do you keep writing your article or go and digest that industry opinion article that everyone’s talking about on Twitter?

Is it too much to ask for both?


August 15th, 2011

Does the tech scene need more humanity?

An interesting Tweetversation has been going on between a couple of leading UK tech journos Chris Davies (from SlashGear) and Mic Wright (freelancer for the likes of Wired & co.)

Check it out below (starting from the bottom)

The article they’re discussing is written by Philip Berne and a great example of the longer format of IT journalism that seems relatively rare in the sea of news that keeps the scene ticking over.


October 20th, 2010

Stop asking what social media is for

simon-cowellRecent releases of online tools have been plagued by the question: What’s it for?

In the case of Buzz, it was criticised for trying to be Twitter. Considering the big question from Twitter luddites is “what’s it for?”, it’s a surprise this paradox didn’t cause a flux in the space time continuum and end life as we know it.

So why exactly is it that so many people can see the value they get from Twitter and the confusion of outsiders but then can’t relate that memory back to the position they occupy when a new service arrives?


August 3rd, 2010

Dell’s Streaky Tablet Strategy

An unidentified non-Streaky Dell tablet

Don’t get me wrong, Dell don’t exactly *need* a tablet PC right now. For a start, they don’t have the OS for it and in reality, the iPad is also too pricey for the mainstream Dell audience to shell out. They aren’t going to buy it instead of a laptop, for example.

However, if Dell let Apple get a year’s head start without anything competitive to show in the area, they wouldn’t end up competing with just the iPad but the iPad 2, some kind of Google machine and likely something from the likes of HTC, HP and co. too.

With this in mind,  they had to do something and quick. Android was really all they had to play with so I can only assume they chucked it onto a few form factors before collapsing in tears at the horrors of Android 1.6 vs the slick and clearly tablet-ready iOS.


July 23rd, 2010

Spot If I am right about the future of Spotify.

As usual, the writing of this post was accelerated due to current events, namely the excellent new version of Spotify’s iPhone app.

But that’s not actually what I want to talk about today. In fact, there’s a much bigger picture here involving the brutally buzzwordised concept of “music-as-a-service”.


April 19th, 2010