Amazon is apparently planning to open a retail store in their hometown of Seattle according to people close to the situation who got in contact with Good e-Reader.

Seattle is where Amazon’s main headquarters is based and is known as a fairly tech savvy market. It is a perfect launch location to get some hands on experience in the retail sphere. A source has told us that they are not looking to launch a huge store with thousands of square feet. Instead they are going the boutique route and stocking the shelves with only high margin and high-end items. Their intention is to mainly hustle their entire line of Kindle e-Readers and the Kindle Fire. They also will be stocking a ton of accessories such as cases, screen protectors, and USB adapters.

Whether or not the story is true, it’s been expected for quite some time that Amazon would soon be stepping out into the physical realm.

While this is big news for the company, I think it would be better for them if they did not open their own independent store, but instead propositioned already well established retailers (i.e. Best Buy) into having a sort of store within a store concept (similar to what Apple are doing with Target in the U.S.,) where there would be an Amazon specialized booth/section somewhere in the store. Especially with the relatively small profit margins the company posted for Q4 2011, as well as them actually expecting to lose money this quarter — this may just turn out to be money poured down the drain for the online retailer.

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SlashGear’s Chris Davies sums up what has been said by HTC execs on their shocking Q4 2011 results:

 HTC “dropped the ball” on its 2011 devices, the company’s CFO has admitted, with LTE-equipped handsets simply too thick and offering insufficient battery life. Speaking on the company’s financial results call today, following HTC’s unappealing Q4 2011 results, Chief Financial Officer Winston Yung conceded that HTC had plenty of work to do improving both “design and components.”

Well, what would you expect? This is the result of narrow-minded thinking on the part of HTC who seem to have gone with a “Bigger is better” philosophy when it came to making those huge LTE Smartphones, but then decide take the cheaper option when it came to battery life resulting in devices which could barely last you half a day when using them excessively.

It also comes down to the piles of cash wasted on ultra-powerful processors (also excessively draining the battery life) which weren’t even optimized well, so they were unable reach their full potential. To be honest, the speed which some of these Android devices (other Android manufacturers are guilty of this too) are running at could be achieved with last generation/less powerful processors if they were optimized effectively — you can just look at what Microsoft/Nokia and Apple have done with the Lumia 800/900 and the iPhone 4/4S respectively.

I would seriously recommend that HTC spend 2012 working on even just 2 or 3 Smartphones in total, so more time is spent on each device in the design/manufacturing process instead of constantly churning out similar devices but with minor changes, and just losing the overall product quality as a result.

As you can see above, Samsung have finally released the first advert for the Galaxy Note in the U.S. (which also happened to be their first Super Bowl advert).

*sighs* If there was one word to describe Samsung Mobile right now, “Shameless” is the word I would pick.

“It’s got a Pen!!”, yeah and so does almost every Pocket PC from the early 00s (I could mention the Apple Newton if you want to go further back). I mean, what makes you think I should even take the device seriously when you’re flaunting a stylus around like it’s supposed to be the next big thing.

Anyway, the thing which irks me the most about all this is Samsung claiming to offer “Freedom” to consumers from the alleged tyranny of the iPhone with a device which just isn’t practical for everyday use. This ad definitely doesn’t do the South Korea-based corporation any favours in their battle to be recognised as the top Smartphone manufacturer in the world.

Apple-bashing aside, this advert is simply awful with Samsung trying to mix-and-match popular trends from over the past decade as well as butchering a song which could be labelled a “classic”, to some.

I wouldn’t even recommend buying a Samsung device which isn’t endorsed by Google (Nexus) to be honest, as there’s no telling when they’ll just end support for it. The Galaxy Note might not even see another OS upgrade past Ice Cream Sandwich, even though it is probably capable of running the next few versions of Android.

As part of their Spring Cleaning, Sony has announced that they will be changing the name of the PlayStation Network (PSN) accounts to Sony Entertainment Network (SEN) accounts. Set to begin from February 7th, it has been said that this change is taking place so that users will have easier access (one log-in account) to all of Sony’s services, thus improving their ecosystem.

While Sony may claim this change was solely made for easier access to other services, this change will obviously be seen by most as an attempt to leave behind the troubled “PlayStation Network” moniker as it has been hacked, plagued with viruses, and much more over the last year or so. But considering this is being touted as a “cosmetic-only” change, the same old problems might rear their heads soon enough and with the SEN accounts being connected to many services we could see the Japan-based Corporation land itself in major trouble sometime in the near future if their security isn’t up to scratch.

Another late contribution to the Shit ___ says category, and this time its “Shit VC’s (Venture Capitalists) Say”. The video comes from David Hornik and to be fair does have some amusing lines in it, including:

“Is that the biggest plane they’ve got?”

“You’d be better off with Snooki on your board”

“What? You only have 7 Million users?”

“What if we put that in the cloud?”

While I’m all for the amusing Tech-related videos, I do hope this is the last one from the “Shit ____ says” category because it really is getting played out fast.

As some of you may have heard, Tumblr rolled out a new feature for their users yesterday, entitled “Highlighted Posts”.

How it works:

Introducing: Highlighted Posts

Every now and then, a post comes along that’s meant for big things. It could be pulling the wraps off your new project, promoting your next show, raising awareness for a cause, or just sharing a truly incredible photo.

Today you’ll have a new option to Highlight those extra-important posts. For one dollar, your post will stand out in the Dashboard with a customizable sticker to make sure your followers take notice!

 

In regards to how this feature would fare on WordPress? I think it would do pretty well considering most people who Blog regularly are sure to have amazing posts which may have been missed by most of their followers, for one reason or another.

So while it may not mean much coming from me, I would definitely recommend to WordPress that they implement this feature sometime in the future — and then possibly tweak it a bit by making payments fast and simple (one-click), as well as limiting the amount of times a user can highlight posts a month (to around 3 or 4 posts).

Yeah, I don’t believe it either but Google has removed the Verizon Galaxy Nexus (LTE/CDMA) from their Developer support page along with the Nexus S 4G (CDMA) with Sprint and the Motorola Xoom (LTE/CDMA).

Google have come out and confirmed that they removed CDMA Android devices from the developer support pages because of the lack of support for key features in the CDMA devices — which included users not being able to place calls on pure AOSP builds. This doesn’t mean that the devices are getting completely abandoned, as Google has confirmed that they will still push official software updates to the Verizon Galaxy Nexus.

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