Tag: gameloft

Intel announces Bay Trail tablet CPU, part two

[Part one is here]

Kirk Skaugen, senior VP General Manager PC Client Group at Intel took over in the second half of Wednesday’s IDF Keynote presentation. He began talking about the “2 in 1” computing platform. That raises the question: Have Ultrabooks slipped off Intel’s road map just when HP is announcing its HP ZBook 14 Ultra Workstation?

Kirk Skaugen


Perhaps they are simply not selling in the volume predicted at a couple past IDFs when Ultrabooks were announced? Skaugen put it this way: “Now we’ve stopped counting [OEM designs], and assumed that the entire world has gone thin”. He added that more than 40 percent of all Core notebooks have been designed with touch. Seventy percent of today’s Ultrabooks are touch-enabled, on the way to 100 percent touch later this year.

Skaugen said by this year’s holidays, the 2-in-1 form factor will be selling in the $999 down to $349 price range. He said that by the year’s end, there will be 60 2-in-1 devices in that future marketplace. Examples he showed were the Sony Duo 13-inch slider, the Dell XP 11, the Sony detachable – which only weighs 780 grams and handles both wired and wireless, and the Dell XP 12, which is a flip screen. An application from CyberLink will be provided on Haswell machines by the end of the year to energise content creation.

Skaugen handed over to Tami Reeler, Microsoft VP who discussed the Windows 8.1 released to developers. There was the usual sales story about how wonderful Windows 8 is.

In August, Windows 8 had the highest demand and sales, which was probably prompted by the back to school movement. She discussed Windows XP and its end of support in April 2014. She also claimed that “three quarters of the corporate users have moved to a modern Windows from Windows XP” – but she didn’t specify whether they were using Windows 7 or Windows 8.x.

Tami Reeler talks Windows 8 with Kirk Skaugen

Intel says that it has the business community handled with fourth generation core CPUs, SST Pro 1500 SSD, location-based security in the enterprise, and its new Pro-WiDI plus password free VPN connections – which got a round of applause from the audience.

Mario Müller, VP of IT Infrastructure at BMW, was next to join Kirk Skaugen on stage. There was some banter about a new BMW for everybody in the audience. Müller said that 55,000 of its 120,000 employees will be getting core i5 computers, but none of the audience will be receiving a BMW, unfortunately.

Mario Müller and Kirk Skaugen discussing new BMW i8 Plug-In Hybrid Sports Car 

Skaugen returned to topic saying that Bay Trail has 140 design wins and it runs all operating systems faster – Android, iOS, Chrome, and Linux. He talked about the Cinnabar benchmark using the fourth generation Broadwell 14 nm CPU. The chips will include AVX 3.2, DDR4 and PCI Express 4.0 support among their improved feature set.

Bay Trail SoCs are aimed at tablets and convertibles with screen sizes priced at $599 or below and will ship in tablets running Windows 8 and Android, ranging down to below $100 in price. When Chinese tablet OEMs start selling $100 price point 7-inch tablets with Bay Trail inside, then Intel will have to be taken very seriously by the ARM and MIPS partners.

Sony Duo slider as a tablet 

The discussions turned towards 3D. By Q2 2014, Intel predicts there will be collaboration over a 3D camera specification that will be implemented into Ultrabooks. We were told that Intel has had high numbers of downloads for its 3D SDK. It has the $100,000,000 Experience  and the Perceptual Computing Fund to work with.

Skaugen showed a 2D/3D camera that fits into the bezel of an Ultrabook. He gave an example of 3D functionality with a video showing children playing with an Ultrabook which had a 3D camera installed. Their expressions were of surprised joy.

3D developers should be glad to know that Project Anarchy is a free 3D game production engine and is ready to be downloaded and used.

Gonzague de Vallois, VP Sales and Marketing for Gameloft, showed off the company’s latest Android 3D auto racing game, referred to as Asphalt 8: Airborne, which takes advantage of Bay Trail and 3D graphics. At $4.99 it’s pretty affordable.

Gameloft’s Asphalt 8, for Android

Sundar Pichai, Senior VP Android Chrome & Apps at Google talked about the just-introduced Haswell CPU Chromebook and its stunning performance, extended battery life, and 3D capabilities. He also presented Doug Fisher from Intel’s Software and Services Group with an official Google Beanie cap – what a new hire at Google wears for their first days. After Pichai left the stage, Fisher said something about ‘that is a give away’.

Sundar Pichai gives Doug Fisher a Google Beanie

Over 1,000 Intel engineers are working on Google Android and Chrome.

Research firm NPD says Chromebooks represent 20-25 percent of the $300-or-less computer segment. Clearly, Intel has embraced Google’s Android and Chrome operating systems as a target market to put a lot of “Intel Inside”. 

Users complain Android app promotion plagued with problems

To celebrate what Google said was the 10 billionth app download from the Android Marketplace, the company has been running a promotion to flog many of its top apps for as little as 10p. But there’s a problem.

Users have found some of the apps outright refusing to work on smartphones that they really should run on. Some are being greeted with “licensing errors” and can’t get past the first screen, or open apps at all. One user writes of Flick Golf: “Bought it and it errors, says it’s unlicensed”.

Another says: “License not working, authentication not working. I got it on the 10 cent special but can’t play the app.” User DK said: “License issues, just bought the app but it says I haven’t bought it. This sucks. I didn’t refund. I’ll wait for a FIX!”

Still on FlickGolf, WayneS writes: “10 cent deal fails. Downloaded under 10 cent offer, but will not run. Keeps asking for license, even though purchased under this deal. Don’t buy with this offer. It won’t work.”

Then there’s “Can’t install, broken DRM, won’t ven let me install” and “License issues! Just downloaded for 10 cents. Won’t let me play. US Sensation”. .

Meanwhile, Gameloft’s racing game Asphalt 6: Adrenaline HD was attracting similar complaints when it was on sale yesterday. “Invalid license, won’t let me play, fix your broken DRM, don’t screw over paying customers!” said one user. Another said: “1 star until they fix license, won’t let me play due to ‘invalid’ license”.

Other customers for Asphalt 6: Adrenaline HD claimed that, despite the deal, they were charged the full hefty price tag for the app. 

Others still are flagging incompatibility problems. This is a challenge for Android anyway, because the OS works across so many different form factors, screen sizes and with different hardware configurations and chipsets. But high-end phones like the Samsung Galaxy S2 are also struggling to make the most of the deal.

Galaxy S2 users are reporting that Gameloft’s Asphalt doesn’t work at all on their handsets, while another promoted app on sale, the NFL Rivals game, has been taking in dodgy reviews.

“Force close, constantly force closing,” said an HTC Rezound user. “Buyers beware,” began a Galaxy S2 user, “Like others, cannot get past first screen. Game crashes after a few seconds. It’s worthless.” 

“wtf, Galaxy S2 freezes too,” said Zhong, while Michael B said: “Can’t get this to work on my Galaxy S2”.

“Keeps crashing, crashes on zoom,” said a user, while another claimed he couldn’t play it on a Motorola Atrix 4G. 

“Won’t even install,” according to a customer called Thomas, “Says it’s compatible with my device, but it won’t even install. Will never buy anything from this crappy company again.”

While 10p a pop might not seem like much money from an individual perspective, it does beg the question how many people bought apps that simply didn’t work for them – and how much money the app makers raked in from Google’s high visibility promotion.

We have contacted Google for comment but, at time of publishing, it hasn’t said a word.