Samsung plans increased investment in software

Samsung might be best known for its hardware, but the company is moving more of its money into software.

Speaking at Samsung's Analyst Day in Seoul, Korea, Wednesday, Samsung CFO Lee Sang-hoon said that the company is modifying its investment strategy, "shifting from hardware to software," according to the Wall Street Journal, which was in attendance at the event. The decision follows industry-wide movement from hardware to software, according to Lee.

Samsung's goal in software is to "reinforce our competitiveness," he said, adding that the company will specifically focus on "software platform, design, … Read more

Five rules for trouble-free software updates

If you think you've been spending more time than usual waiting for your software to update, you may be right.

The release of Windows 8.1, OS X Mavericks, and iOS 7.0.3 has given us update fatigue. This weekend it took me a total of 7 hours to install all three upgrades: 2.5 hours for Windows 8.1, 3.5 hours for Mavericks, and 1 hour for iOS 7.0.3.

Even though the updates installed without a hitch, most people have no need to rush applying the upgrades. Taking your time is one of my &… Read more

Horror movie locations plotted out in Esri's interactive map

Want to find a real haunted house to explore on Halloween? Well, look no further -- mapping software company Esri has come out with an interactive map that explores where in the world horror movies supposedly took place.

For example, that massive mansion in "The Shining" where Jack Nicholson's character famously axed through a bathroom door and yelled "Here's Johnny?" That was in Estes Park, Colo.

What about the haunted home inhabited by evil spirits and paranormal activity in "Poltergeist?" That was in the fictional town of Cuesta Verde, Calif. And, not … Read more

Better manage system and app updates in OS X Mavericks

One of the reasons I work on a Mac rather than a PC is to avoid the constant interruptions from Windows alerting me to crucial software updates, not to mention its nasty habit of insisting on installing 48 updates before letting me shut down my PC at the end of the day. Mac OS X isn't completely innocent in this regard, but Mac OS X 10.9 Mavericks gives you more options than previous versions of OS X did in scheduling updates. You can set up Mavericks to install updates automatically, and if you want to go the manual … Read more

Why Samsung needs to woo developers

SAN FRANCISCO -- For Samsung, courting developers isn't just a nice side project. It's a push that's vital to the company's future.

The Korean company is the world's biggest mobile phone and TV vendor. It sells more Android smartphones than LG, Lenovo, Huawei, ZTE, and Motorola combined, and many consumers equate Samsung's Galaxy brand with Google's operating system. As a smartphone vendor, Samsung benefits from the Android ecosystem and the huge Google Play app store.

But being just another Android player is not enough, at least not if Samsung wants to continue its … Read more

Samsung wants Android apps that stand apart, starting now

SAN FRANCISCO -- Samsung on Monday rolled out five software development kits to make it easier for developers to create apps for its various devices.

The new SDKs include one for multiscreen capabilities and another for multiscreen gaming. Samsung also streamlined its mobile SDK, released a new version of its smart TV SDK, and updated its enterprise SDK.

The SDK releases highlight Samsung's push to offer something different from all the other Android device makers. It's also part of Samsung's effort to work more closely with startups and boost its software and service offerings. The two areas … Read more

What do you want to see in the next Mac OS X? (poll)

In my review, I thought Mac OS X Mavericks was a worthwhile update with a bunch of new features, new apps brought over from iOS, smarter interface elements, battery-saving technologies, and security improvements. Best of all? It's free. To me, there isn't any reason not to update.

But my review brought about another question: Where can Apple go from here? Aside from minor tweaks to smooth out the rough edges, what's left to improve that we don't already have? It's a question that I'm sure the folks at Apple, Microsoft, Google, and Linux are … Read more

Apple's iWork, iLife updates draw ire from some power users

At Apple's live event earlier this week, iWork and iLife users were given a treat: free upgrades to major new versions of the company's productivity and lifestyle apps.

The move, which follows one the company made last month on its mobile platform iOS, is part of a broader effort to offer many of its paid software apps for free.

But, according to some longtime users, the new versions of the apps are a step backwards in functionality. Many have taken to Apple's official support forum to air their grievances.

Among the features users say are missing from … Read more

With Snap.svg, Adobe gets animated SVG religion -- again

Eight years after Adobe Systems acquired Macromedia for $3.4 billion, in part for its Flash technology that vanquished the Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) format, the company has released an open-source project called Snap.svg designed to bring some Flash-like characteristics to the Web.

Flash is slowly being squeezed off the Web -- at least newer parts of it -- by the fact that it doesn't run on mobile devices and that browser developers are starting to banish plug-ins. Adobe has redirected a lot of its staffing accordingly to Web standards that work in browsers without plug-ins, and SVG … Read more

Windows 8.1: What you need to know (FAQ)

One year after the debut of Windows 8, Windows 8.1 is here. It feels significantly less dramatic, but Microsoft's latest version of its PC operating system has some changes, and some requirements, all its own. If you're a curious would-be adopter, or a diligent Windows 8 upgrader, read on for some answers to your questions.

What's new?

Last year's Windows 8 was a brand-new, somewhat jarring operating system aimed at making touch-screen devices, and Windows devices that could convert between touch and keyboard/mouse modes, easier to use.

Windows 8.1 is a series of … Read more