Archive for the ‘News’ Category

18 Oct: New Rules dealing with mobile bill shock

An article on The Age reports that the Australian government and regulators are considering a new rule that mobile carriers would be forced to notify customers before slugging them with excess usage fees and other extra charges.

The article also adds that the new regulation will require carriers to alert consumers when they near their monthly quota for voice, text and data services. The alerts, sent by text or voice message, would also apply to other extra charges such as international roaming fees.

I had experienced ‘bill shock’ last month when I had to pay extra $150 for my usage. Therefore, to me this regulation is very substantial. I am using Three with $50 cap. If I want to check my usage, I need to go to My3 and log on with my user and password. But the point is My3 actually doesn’t show my up-to-date usage. I only know my usage until Three send me online statement.

I think this situation also has been happening to many mobile users. Especially in Australia where the mobile charges are very high, it is very necessary for mobile services like Three, Virgin, Optus and so forth to alert their customers if they are going to excess their usage.

19 Oct: Google travel search

Although this online article is under ‘Traveller‘ section on The Age, I want to put it in my collection of technology news for this week.

The article gives an interesting information that Google search engine is experimenting new tool to provide much richer search results. This new technology helps customers trawl through multiple sources or cross-reference information from several sites.

The article also provides a clear example that travellers are able to look at a map and see actual prices for hotels in a given area (along with images and information on facilities and nearby attractions), with the ability to click through to make a reservation via a third-party booking site.

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Readings of this week bring many interesting viewpoints that spin around the rise of blogging and the death of newspapers.

1. Rupert Murdoch\’s view on the role of newspaper in the digital age

In the speech, Rupert Murdoch aims to address the decline of printed news consumption and the rise of online news through a range of actual evidence. It’s undeniable that in recent times, young people prefer to get information through the web than read newspapers due to the convenience and updating of online news. The interesting point in Murdoch speech, I think, is his though about the role of journalists in providing information for young readers, who want faster news delivered by distinctive ways. He says that editors and journalists use the internet as a great tool to deliver news. Journalists are media actors, who have ‘the experience, the brands, the resources, and the know-how to get it done’. The challenge for all news websites, according to Murdoch, is how to get a room in the internet traffic. The answer is media practitioners need to bring to their readers more compelling and relevant content with deep local news and relevant national and international news. Also, a blend of commentary and debate, or gossip and humor can reshape the presence of a news web page.

2. Journalists’ Professionalism

Rowan Williams\’ article focuses on the credibility of online materials. He says that it is a challenge for media practitioners in the digital age to balance the professionalism of traditional media and online communication. Williams also raises an issue about the responsibility of the media for the quality of communication in a society. Williams also brings Steven Johnson‘s viewpoint on the article to argue that compared to works twenty years ago, news now ‘doesn’t guarantee an imaginative depth, a sense of knowledge as tied in with processes that take time’.

This week I want to share my thoughts about some interesting news that I read on CNET.

 

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks during a news conference at Facebook headquarters in Palo Alto, California May 26, 2010. Credit: Reuters/Robert Galbraith

 

The most striking news story is about the rumor that Facebook is building up its own smartphone. Report from TechCrunch says that Facebook is creating the software for the phone and collaborating with others to build the hardware. However, Facebook denies the report and stresses that ‘all experiences would be better if they were social, so integrating deeply into existing platforms and operating systems is a good way to enable this’. Confronting this responses, CNET confirms that building a branded mobile phone is a key strategy to get more aggressive toward Apple and Google. Personally, whether the rumor is true or not, Facebook is still the king of social networks. Building up a new smartphone is simply one way of competing or cooperating with other enterprises.



Another interesting story is about Microsoft’s attempt to add LinkedIn and Facebook chat to Hotmail and Messenger. For those of you who have no ideas about LinkedIn the video below will give you basic information about how linkedln can be used and what its standout performances are.

Back to the news story about Microsoft, I think this is just another attempt on the long run of the company to provide more services for its users in using social networks. My question is that why it is necessary to add Facebook chat and Linkedln to Hotmail and Messenger?