Only a year after buying it, Google has sold Motorola to Lenovo. While Google is keeping all the patents, it is believed they are losing quite a bit by selling it. This move indicates that Google believes it can make more money from Android alone, rather than making phones themselves. This also means they may have made a deal with handset makers like Samsung to provide a pure Google experience for their phones.
Geoffrey is concerned that he won't get the software updates in a timely fashion like with a pure Google phone now that Motorola won't be owned by Google anymore. Leo suspects there won't really be an issue. First, it'll take awhile to get approval from both the US and Chinese governments. On top of that, people were concerned about the ThinkPad under Lenovo, and that is now the best laptop in the business.
Leo got a deal of $100 off on an unlocked Moto X. The cool part about it is that it came with a Walnut wooden back. Two days after Leo bought this phone, Google sold Motorola to Lenovo. Google kept most of Motorola's patents, though, which was vital to protect against patent wars.
Google also has convinced Samsung to either stop putting junk on its phones, or make them removable by the user. The agreement included a deal for Google to not sue Samsung for a decade.
Mike is having trouble connecting to the Sony server on his Sony Bravia HDTV. Leo says sometimes the device can't see Wi-Fi and it'll lose the connection. Mike has a wired bridge though, so is there any other reason this could be happening?
Leo says that Mike should try using another device to see if it works. If he can rule out the bridge and the internet connection, then he can focus on the TV. Mike had to disconnect and re-register. It worked for a day and then stopped again. Leo says at that point, it has to be Sony's issue. Smart TVs leave a bit to be desired, Leo says.
Trent works in the IT department at a local school, and they are currently running a Microsoft Exchange Server. They're thinking of moving over to Google Apps. What does Leo think?
Robert has finally saved up enough money to get a Mac, but he noticed he has to install Flash himself. Leo says that Steve Jobs hated Flash and as such, Apple stopped supporting it. Leo says he can download and install Flash from Get.Adobe.com/flashplayer. He should just make sure he gets it from the official site, and not a phoney one. He should also be careful not to fall for the scam that he needs a new version of Flash to watch a video. Download Flash from Adobe directly and install it.
George listens to TWiT with his Roku. He says he knows the Chromecast doesn't have a lot of apps on it, but he decided to try one to stream websites from his browser to the TV. He wanted to do that from a cheap Android tablet running Jellybean, but Google won't let him into the Play Store. Leo says that's because it's not an "AOSP" version of Android. That's what makes it cheap.
Unless you get an Android phone that's advertised as a "pure Google experience," chances are your Android phone has some pre-installed software that often is referred to as "bloatware." This means it has extra programs or features that are installed over top of Android, and in many cases cannot be removed. Samsung's recent phones have particularly suffered from this. Fortunately, it's fairly easy to at least hide these unwanted extras.
Quartz published an article this week declaring that 2013 was a terrible year for technology and that innovation was albeit over. Leo doesn't agree, though. First, the story of Edward Snowden blowing the whistle of how prevalent the NSA's eavesdropping on Americans was a huge story in technology. Google's Project Glass was an interesting story that may be the beginning of wearable computing.
As 2013 comes to a close, Leo says that privacy, or the loss of it, should be viewed as the topic of the year. As the NSA has spread its reach further into our lives, even the major tech companies have taken out a huge ad campaign to say "stop spying on us." But there's also some nice things about a lack of privacy. Google has created Auto-Awesome Movies, a year end movie of all the photos posted to Google Plus. Leo says it's a great document to show the year, but it's also a horrendous invasion of privacy.