Tech News

When Kickstarters Fail, 10 Million iPhones, China Blocks DuckDuckGo, And More… [Tech News Digest]

Dave Parrack 23-09-2014

Also, HTC working on Google Nexus tablet, real-time YouTube analytics, the release of PlayStation TV, and when two Friends sold Windows 95.

Kickstarter Distances Itself From Failures

Kickstarter has updated its Terms of Use to make the relationship between creators, backers, and the company clearer. The updated Terms of Use state that when someone backs a project they’re making a contract with the creator of that project. Kickstarter itself isn’t part of this contract, merely providing the platform on which the two parties come together.

With Kickstarter having safely removed itself from the equation, the new Terms of Use then spell out what is expected of project creators Crappy Crowdfunding: 10 Dumb Kickstarters We Did Not Support [Weird & Wonderful Web] The success of crowdfunded innovations has attracted the brilliant...and also the inane and insane. Here are 10 of the absolute worst Kickstarter campaigns we could find. Watch them because they are comedy gold. Read More . In particular, a set of obligations is set out, which, if not met, could mean the creator is “subject to legal action by backers.” In other words, fail to deliver and expect to get sued.

10 Million iPhones Sold Over The Weekend

Apple sold 10 million iPhones over the past weekend, setting a new record in the process. Apple shifted 10 million units of the iPhone 6 Apple's Big Event: iPhone 6, Watch & New Wireless Payment System Finally, the rumours are confirmed: two new larger iPhones and a smart timepiece known simply as the Apple Watch are on the way. Read More and iPhone 6 Plus Should You Buy The Bigger iPhone 6 Plus? The term "phablet" very much applies to Apple's recently announced iPhone 6 Plus, but there's more to it than just a bigger screen. Read More by the end of launch weekend, with the new models going on sale in the U.S., Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Puerto Rico, Singapore, and the U.K.

Apple CEO Tim Cook said sales “exceeded our expectations,” and thanked all Apple customers for “making this our best launch ever, shattering all previous sell-through records by a large margin.” The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus will go on sale in an additional 20 countries this Friday (Sept. 26), and will be available in 115 countries by the end of the year.

DuckDuckGo Blocked In China

Privacy-focused search engine DuckDuckGo has been blocked in China, being knocked out sometime around Sept. 4. Until that date, DuckDuckGo worked perfectly in mainland China, but it has now suffered the same fate as Google, which was blocked in June of this year.

There is no mystery to why both DuckDuckGo 10 Useful DuckDuckGo Instant Answers That Save You Time & A Few Clicks Instant Answers is a collection of DuckDuckGo goodies that potentially make your online search life somewhat easier. Here are ten from a huge list you can try out on this alternative search engine. Read More and Google have been blocked: neither censors search results, meaning they were flouting Chinese media laws. By contrast, Microsoft complies with the relevant laws, meaning Bing Is Bing Better Than Google Search? We Find Out By many accounts, Bing is really giving Google a run for its money. On November 6th of this year, the Guardian reported that Google's search share in the UK dipped under 90% as Bing's share... Read More is still accessible in China.

HTC Making Next Google Nexus Tablet

It looks extremely likely that HTC is making the next Google Nexus tablet, with the Wall Street Journal claiming this is a done deal. This would mean Google has dropped ASUS, which made the two previous versions of the Nexus 7. This new Nexus tablet is rumored to be aimed at the high-end of the market and feature a 9-inch screen.

If true, the Nexus 9 would be the first tablet from HTC since the disastrous HTC Flyer in 2011, which was the first and last tablet HTC produced. HTC has a strong reputation for making solid Android smartphones The 4 Best Android Phones Available Right Now Buying an Android phone is more complicated than buying an iPhone. There are literally thousands of choices, most of which are terrible (but also inexpensive). Homing in on the best requires time, research, consideration and... Read More , so it is rather bizarre that this success hasn’t translated into a desirable tablet.

YouTube Adds Real-Time Analytics

YouTube has added real-time reporting to its analytics dashboard. This means the more stats-focused users can track how many views each of their videos are getting at any given moment. According to The Next Web, hour-by-hour data is available for the last 48 hours, with minute-by-minute data available for the last hour. And if your YouTube videos How To Make YouTube Videos That Don't Suck The formula for creating a hit video is a tricky one. You never know when something you've done will garner a lot of attention online. Read More fail to get any views in that time, well, that’s just depressing.

PlayStation TV Gets Release Date

Sony has announced that PlayStation TV will be available in the U.S. from Oct. 14. The device is priced at $99 on its own, or at $139 for a bundle (adding a DualShock 3 controller, an 8GB memory card, and The LEGO Movie Videogame). The hardware, which was unveiled at E3 2014 E3 2014 News Roundup, Facebook Teases Slingshot, Moto X Offer Ends [Tech News Digest] Highlights from E3 2014, Facebook teases Slingshot, Moto X sells out, Doodle 4 Google winner revealed, Netflix stops ISP shaming, OneNote Clipper for Chrome, and George R.R. Martin joins Twitter. Read More , streams games from various PlayStation systems, and plays selected PS Vita titles.

When Friends Sold Windows 95

And finally, 20 years is a long time by any standard, but particularly in the fields of entertainment and technology. Which is why this promotional video for Windows 95 How to Run Really Old Software on a 64-Bit PC: 6 Methods Windows reverse compatibility is fading with every advance. Here's how you can run 16-bit programs on your 64-bit Windows. Read More looks and feels so outdated. It features Friends stars Matthew Perry and Jennifer Aniston, and, as The Verge points out, it makes for timely viewing due to yesterday (Sept. 22) marking the 20th anniversary of the iconic New York sitcom. This surely remains the highlight of their careers.

Your Views On Today’s Tech News

What do you think should happen when a Kickstarter campaign fails to deliver on its promises? Is China right to block DuckDuckGo? Have you ever seen a worse promotional video than the Microsoft/Friends mashup?

Let us know your thoughts on the tech news of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.

Image Credit: Simon Cunningham via Flickr

Related topics: Kickstarter, PlayStation, Web Search, YouTube.

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  1. James B
    September 24, 2014 at 3:01 pm

    Looks like I'll be upgrading to Windows 95 this weekend, I'm convinced now of how awesome it really is. I'd like to see an equivalent Windows 8 one.

    I think the Kickstarter clarifications are good, and don't see it so much as distancing themselves from projects as clarifying what responsibilities project creators have. That said, I haven't been burnt by a kickstarter yet, and I've spent at least a few thousand dollars on projects over the last couple of years. I don't generally back games though (digital, I mean) - those seem to have a terrible track record with spiralling costs and cancellations.

    • Dave P
      September 25, 2014 at 3:31 pm

      I wish Microsoft still made shit like this. I guess it would be Ashton Kutcher and some other knobby sitcom star in a new one for Windows 8 though.

      Well, I agree that these changes are good, but Kickstarter is definitely also making it clear that they shouldn't be the subject of any nasty lawsuits. It's like having a hands off approach, which is understandable.

      Games do tend to be the worst offenders when it comes to screwing over backers. Which is kinda strange, as you would imagine following through in hardware would be a lot more difficult. I'm glad you haven't been a victim yet though. You've certainly spent enough on there of late :S

  2. Tom W
    September 23, 2014 at 1:23 pm

    After watching that Microsoft video, I can tell that the software was really revolutionary at the time. The humour, however, hasn't aged well at all.

    • Dave P
      September 25, 2014 at 3:26 pm

      I guess Windows 95 was revolutionary at the time, but it all looks so crappy from our position sitting watching from the future. As for the humour, I'm not sure this was funny at the time either.

  3. Stanimir M
    September 23, 2014 at 11:37 am

    Haha like that friends video

    • Dave P
      September 25, 2014 at 3:25 pm

      It's so cheesy it's actually extremely funny. Just not for the reasons they originally hoped!