Tech News

Tablet Sales Crashing At Best Buy, Microsoft Goes To War Over Email, And More… [Tech News Digest]

Dave Parrack 31-07-2014

Also, Nintendo continues to struggle, new Samsung smartphones are incoming, the LG 5K TV you can’t afford, Sony rejects EA Access, and Windows Phone 8.1 inspires a brilliant fan-made trailer.


Is The Tablet Boom Coming To An End?

According to the CEO of U.S. retailer Best Buy, sales of tablets are “crashing.” Does this signal the end of the tablet boom Not Just for Grown Ups: 5 Android Tablets You Would Let Your Kids Use There's a certain novelty factor to tablets, which invariably means that if one person in the household owns one, they'll be continually fighting off calls to share. Not only is this annoying, it has the... Read More that has taken place over the last few years?

Hubert Joly told Re/code, “The tablets boomed and now are crashing. The volume has really gone down in the last several months … The issue has then been that, once you have a tablet of a certain generation, it’s not clear that you have to move on to the next generation.

So, according to Joly, people who have bought tablets at Best Buy aren’t seeing any need to buy replacements due to a lack of innovation. And that’s unlikely to change anytime soon. Which leads us to believe that while true geeks will continue to upgrade their tablets every year, the mainstream will stick with what they already have. Which equates to a sharp drop in sales.

Microsoft Fights The Feds Over Your Email

Microsoft isn’t particularly known for being on the side of consumers, but its latest effort to stop the U.S. Government having access to your emails suggests it’s not always the bad guy 3 Reasons Microsoft Is Losing The Plot [Opinion] Are we in the midst of the final days of Microsoft as we know it? Feedback from tech professionals about Metro UI has been predominantly negative so far, but that's the least of our worries... Read More .

The U.S. Government is arguing that emails stored in the cloud How to Permanently Store Your Data in "The Cloud" Are you ready to step into The Cloud? In this article I will show you how you can become largely independent of local data storage. I will provide an overview of how the Internet can... Read More no longer belong to an individual but instead become part of the business records of the company which owns the servers. If this stance was accepted then the government would have the right to access emails stored online anywhere in the world without the need for a search warrant.


Microsoft is opposing the government at a hearing in federal court in New York, with Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith stating the company’s case in an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal. You can ridicule Microsoft all you want, but in this case the company appears to be fighting for a just cause.

Nintendo Still Struggling To Sell Wii U

Nintendo is still struggling to convince gamers they need a Wii U Nintendo Wii U Review and Giveaway Despite the increasing shift to mobile gaming, consoles are still very popular devices for playing immersive, graphics-intensive games; and that won’t change anytime soon as long as the major console makers continue to improve with... Read More . That’s the big takeaway from the Japanese company’s latest earnings report that showed the company suffered an operating loss of $92.7 million in the first fiscal quarter of 2014. Sales of the Wii U hardware are up — to 510,000 between April and June — but not enough to suggest any kind of upwards momentum.

Samsung Teases Two New Smartphones

Samsung has teased two new smartphones due for release within the next six months. According to The Wall Street Journal, one will have “a large screen” while the other will feature “new materials.

The new models were teased during a disappointing earnings call in which Samsung reported that net profit fell 19.6 percent on the previous year. Samsung still made $6.1 billion in three months, so any talk of a crisis is pure hyperbole.


The TV We All Want But Can’t Afford

You can now purchase a 105-inch, 5K curved-screen television set from LG. That is if you have a spare $117,000 burning a hole in your pocket. LG showed off the 105UC9 at CES 2014, and now it’s actually available to buy.

The “5K” assignation comes from the fact that this beast of a TV boasts a higher resolution than those shoddy 4K pretenders Should You Buy A 4K / Ultra HD Television? About a decade ago, manufacturers started to sell what's now widely known as an HDTV. But now HD is old news, so the industry has decided to push another new technology; Ultra HD, also known... Read More . If you have this kind of money then please do something more worthwhile with it than buying a new television set TV Buying Guide: How To Pick The Right TV For Your Living Room When it comes to buying a TV, there's a lot more than what's on a spec sheet. By the end of this guide, you'll know exactly how to pick the right TV. Read More .

Sony Rejects EA Access For Lack Of Value

Sony has rejected bringing EA Access to PlayStation 4 because it doesn’t represent good value for money. EA Access is the publisher’s new subscription-based service for its titles, and is launching exclusively on Xbox One Amazon Wants Cheap eBooks, Google Fixes Android Flaw, And More... [Tech News Digest] Also, Facebook kills Gifts, Netflix signs deal with AT&T, EA launches subscription service, the PS4 goes 3D, and a reminder not to play with microwave ovens. Read More . We now know why.

A Sony representative told Game Informer, “We evaluated the EA Access subscription offering and decided that it does not bring the kind of value PlayStation customers have come to expect. We don’t think asking our fans to pay an additional $5 a month for this EA-specific program represents good value to the PlayStation gamer.


Meanwhile, Sony requires PS4 owners to buy a PlayStation Plus subscription in order to play online, and is currently testing PlayStation Now, a new paid-for streaming service based on the Gaikai technology Sony acquired in 2012. We’re sure the two are completely unconnected. /sarcasm

A Fan-Made Trailer For Windows Phone 8.1

And finally, Windows Phone has so far struggled to establish itself as a viable alternative to Android and iOS, despite being a very capable mobile operating system. Perhaps Microsoft should consider turning to fans of Windows Phone, who, judging by this trailer posted to Vimeo, could do a better job of selling the third mobile OS than the company itself.

Your Views On Today’s Tech News

Do you think the tablet boom was a passing fad? Do you support Microsoft in its quest to protect your emails from prying eyes? Do you think Nintendo will survive despite the failure of the Wii U?

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: Veronica Belmont via Flickr

Related topics: Microsoft, Nintendo, Windows Phone.

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  1. Ben
    August 2, 2014 at 4:57 am

    Microsoft has finally hit it right with the Surface Pro 3. Instead of going after the iPad like all the other competition, they have finally realized that Windows 8 (full) can be a great experience when used as a tablet AND a desktop PC. I bought the Asus T100 with Windows 8.1 to use as a secondary device. I have to say, I am using it more as a desktop/tablet combo replacement device, and I have both a laptop and a desktop. The greatest thing is that I can unplug it from my desktop setup and quickly toss it in my bag if I need to run out the door.

    The Surface Pro 3 is going to be my next purchase along with the docking station. That combined with a full keyboard and mouse would make a killer replacement device. I am going to get the i7 version so that I can run CAD and all my work related programs and then I am going to get rid of my laptop and desktop computers.

    Now the Asus T100 is not a work horse by any means. You aren't going to run AutoCAD on it but for my daily email and web surfing, it works fantastic! One gripe I have about the Asus T100 is that I can't use an OTG cable for my keyboard/mouse dongle and charge the tablet at the same time unless I have it plugged into the included keyboard base. I rarely use the included keyboard base because the trackpad is junk and I have the tablet portion in a case. Much easier to set the tablet on my desk in it's case, plug in my wireless adapter and get to work.

    The only gripe I have to say about 8.1 and tablets, the app store is crap and their music app selection leaves much to be desired. If I am streaming from a website and I lock the screen, the music stops. All because I can't find an actual app in the store. Microsoft really needs to increase their efforts to get the app store growing.

  2. dragonmouth
    July 31, 2014 at 6:04 pm

    I wonder what the pundits that were prophesising a "paradigm shift" of tablets replacing PC, have to say now as the sales figures come in.

  3. dragonmouth
    July 31, 2014 at 6:00 pm

    Tablet sales pattern - instant replay of netbook sales pattern. At first, when new, they're hot. Then, as people realize they are of limited utility, they become cold as ice. Besides, people expect and want their smartphones to have the functionality of a tablet or even a PC.

  4. Kevin
    July 31, 2014 at 4:54 pm

    On the tablet issue: I have say that when I purchased my Toshiba Thrive, I did so with the intention of NOT purchasing another one. So far, its been a great choice. I use it for what I purchased it for, and do not feel the need to upgrade or buy another one.