Posts Tagged ‘Twitter’

08.27
13

Social media sends Ballmer off with a bang

by admin ·

Reaction to news of Microsoft CEO’s forthcoming retirement unsurprisingly noisy, contentious.

The Internet reacted to the news that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer plans to retire within 12 months as might have been expected – with a flurry of jeers, opprobrium and the occasional heartfelt farewell.

“Retirement! Retirement, retirement, retirement!” japed redditor trataka, in reference to one of Ballmer’s well-known performances at a Microsoft conference.

Fellow reddit user foxmccloudpsu went with “I see you’re trying to find a new CEO. Can I help you with that?” and Arizhel bemoaned the loss of Ballmer’s influence at Microsoft – “I’m not happy at all. Ballmer needs to stay in charge; he’s doing an excellent job of running MS into the ground. I do not want this trainwreck to end.”

[MAIN STORY: Microsoft CEO Ballmer to retire in 12 months]

Much of the reaction on Twitter, by contrast, was surprisingly measured, with much made of the fact that Microsoft’s stock price jumped by about 9% following the announcement. Register writer Iain Thomson said that “has got to be more than a little embarrassing.”

Journalist Ed Bott joked that “mainstream support for Steve Ballmer ended in 2009. Extended support ends in 2014,” while a spoof account for tech evangelist Jeff Jarvis snarked “what Microsoft needs is a CEO who thinks big, like Elon Musk.”

Snide comments were unsurprisingly rife on Google Plus as well. Blogger Patrick Jordan weighed in with “I’m sure he’s going to be a business school study, for all the wrong reasons.”

Well-known Rackspace startup liaison officer Robert Scoble, as part of a lengthy open letter to Microsoft’s board, said that Microsoft under Ballmer “is like that super smart kid who is doing drugs and not living up to its potential.”

Pocket Labs’ Gary Royal dug all the way back to antiquity for his zinger, saying that Microsoft’s board “no doubt plans to install a Caligula to make Ballmer’s Tiberius seem sane, tolerant and kind by comparison.”


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05.2
13

Is Twitter broken?

by admin ·

Hacks, false information have some questioning Twitter’s resolve

Twitter, the increasingly popular micro-blogging service, has come under quite a bit of criticism in the past few weeks. Users of the platform, which describes itself as an “information-sharing network” are struggling with what to do about false information being spread around.

It may not sound like a big deal for individual users to let a white lie slip about some status update. But during the past few weeks there have been some more concerning examples of misinformation spreading across the social forum.

For example, Twitter users (as well as those on other popular sites such as Reddit.com) were quick to identify certain individuals as possible culprits of the Boston Marathon bombings days after the attacks, including a Brown University student who had been missing and was later found dead with no connection to the Boston incident. Rumors about whether suspects had been captured or arrested streamed through Twitter users’ timelines as breaking news unfolded after the attacks, some of it true and some not.

After the commotion of the marathon incident seemed to have settled down a week later, another black eye for Twitter popped up when the Associated Press’s Twitter account was hacked, and perpetrators sent out fabricated updates from the venerable news agency’s Twitter feed reporting that the White House had been attacked and President Obama injured.

With such misinformation spewing out from the firehose that is Twitter, it begs the question: Is Twitter broken?

Twitter may have answered that question somewhat. The company is reportedly looking into adding a two-factor authentication system to the free service, according to Wired Magazine, which security experts say would make it harder for hackers to gain access to Twitter accounts, and could have possibly prevented the AP’s incident.

“It’s a great idea,” to implement two-factor authentication, says Scott Behrens, an application security expert at security consultancy Neohapsis Labs. The administrative and technical challenges of rolling out a two-factor system will likely be some hurdles to implementing a system, he says because Twitter integrates with so many other services, apps and web sites.

Despite some developers of third-party Twitter apps being upset by recent changes to “clamp down” on Twitter APIs, Behrens says those changes could actually make it easier to ensure third-party apps are playing by Twitter’s rules, including the potential roll-out of a two-factor system.

Two-factor authentication seems like a natural fit for the company though, especially in light of the recent incidents such as high-profile accounts like the AP being hacked. Others like the Burger King and Major League Baseball accounts have also been victims of hackings.

Two-factor systems, such as the ones sold from vendors like Symantec, RSA and others, usually require both a password that a user knows and some randomly-generated code that is supplied to them, and are an industry-accepted best practice security technique. Google already has an optional two-factor system, but Behrens says there’s a careful line. “Usability is the biggest question,” Behrens said; Twitter still wants to keep it easy for Tweeters to use – especially non-technical savvy ones, which is why he believes an opt-in approach would likely be best. Behrens wonders if Facebook and LinkedIn follow in Twitter and Google’s footsteps in exploring two-factor authentication?

Implementing two-factor authentication will not solve all of the problems that have cropped up around Twitter in recent weeks though. It may help prevent the AP’s account from being hacked, but it would do nothing to prevent false rumors from spreading like wildfire.
Wired reporter Mat Honan offers a solution in a recent article, noting that he regrettably tweeted incorrect information linking Brown University missing student Sunil Tripathi to the Boston Marathon bombings. When Honan tweeted it out, some number of people retweeted it, sharing it with their followers; some number of their followers may have retweeted it as well. Even if Honan had issued some corrective alert to his followers that the tweet was incorrect, it would not guarantee that everyone else down that chain of retweets would see it as well.

Honan, therefore, proposes a way to mark tweets as having knowingly false information, or showing them having been edited. Twitter does allow the ability to delete Tweets, which also deletes the post from any users who have retweeted it, but there is no post-facto editing of Tweets currently. Others have proposed some sort of upvoting and downvoting system, a common feature of many social media sharing sites like Reddit.

Paul Gillen, a social media expert in the Boston area, says all of these issues amount to “growing pains” for Twitter as a platform. Twitter is being used in ways that its creator Jack Dorsey likely did not originally envision when he created it in 2006. Gillen is optimistic that between steps Twitter will take, such as implementing two-factor authentication, and by the general Twitter user base learning who to trust and who not to, that the platform will improve. He cautions against throwing out crowd-sources platform altogether though. Wikipedia, for example, after last month’s bombings very quickly compiled a well-sourced posting on the incident. “Don’t dismiss tools because of some bad experiences,” he says.


 

 

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08.2
12

Microsoft kissing Hotmail goodbye

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The company aims to draw users away from Gmail and Yahoo Mail

Microsoft on Tuesday began publicly previewing a new webmail service for consumers called Outlook.com that will eventually replace Hotmail.

Microsoft also expects that Outlook.com will draw people away from competing consumer webmail services like Google’s Gmail and Yahoo Mail.

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With Outlook.com, Microsoft set out to “reimagine personal e-mail — from the datacenter all the way to the user experience,” wrote Microsoft official Chris Jones in a blog post.

Outlook.com features what Microsoft describes as “clean” and “intuitive” user interface that gives more prominence to messages and less to other elements, like headers and search boxes. It doesn’t include display ads.

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With Exchange ActiveSync, Outlook.com accounts can be synchronized across a variety of devices, and it features native integration with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google and, in the near future, Microsoft’s own Skype.

This means that users can access content and notifications from those social media accounts within the Outlook.com interface.

Outlook.com also sorts messages of different types into separate buckets, so that e-mail from contacts, newsletter subscriptions, e-commerce notifications and social media content is arranged into different groups.

The new webmail service also includes Office Web Apps, the online versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote along with the SkyDrive cloud storage service.

Once Outlook.com exits its test phase, it will replace Hotmail’s user interface, although users will be able to retain their @hotmail.com, @live.com and @msn.com addresses as well as their contacts, messages, password and rules.

“While today’s preview is just the start, Outlook.com is ready now to become your primary email service. We’re expecting millions of people to try it out. Starting today, you can get an @Outlook.com email address, and we’ve also made it easy to get started with your current email address if you want to,” Jones wrote.

Outlook.com is not to be confused with the Outlook email and calendaring PC application, nor with Outlook Web App, which gives Exchange users access to their accounts via a browser.

05.10
11

ViewSonic ViewPad 10 tablet: Windows plus Android doesn’t add up

by admin ·

You know the Reese’s ad about how chocolate and peanut better go better together? I bet whoever came up with the ViewSonic ViewPad 10 had the same aspiration. The problem is this dual-OS tablet is not a delectable combination. Think creamed spinach and red licorice, not peanut butter and chocolate.

The ViewPad 10 is an awkward shotgun marriage whose two parties clearly don’t have their hearts in it. You notice as soon as you turn it on. You get a DOS-like prompt telling you to use the arrow keys to select the OS you want: Windows 7 or Android. However, there are no arrow keys on the device. It’s a tablet, so of course there’s no keyboard, but you wil find three buttons: Power, Home, and Enter. It turns out you can use Home as a down-arrow key.

 

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[ Also on InfoWorld: “Tablet deathmatch: Apple iPad 2 vs. Motorola Xoom” | “RIM BlackBerry PlayBook: Unfinished, unusable” | Compare and calculate your own scores for the iPad 2, Xoom, Galaxy Tab, PlayBook, and ViewPad with our tablet calculator. ]

I asked ViewSonic why the boot menu didn’t match the actual buttons and was told that the company used a Linux boot loader. In other words, either no one thought to have the hardware and software match or no one cared to do anything about it. This “slap it together mentality” is one reason no tablets come close to the iPad.

The slow, awkward Windows experience
Once you boot into Windows, you get, well, Windows. It’s immediately familiar, so there’s essentially no learning curve. ViewSonic pre-installs very few applications. There’s Adobe Reader 9 and the minimum set of Windows-provisioned applications: Internet Explorer, Windows Media Player, XPS Viewer, and the Calculator. You’ll need to install anything else you might want to use, such as Outlook or Office. Of course, the ViewPad is a tablet, so there’s no DVD drive, but you can plug one in via USB — if you own one.

However, you may not want to install any applications. Windows 7 and apps such as IE run like molasses on the ViewPad 10 and its 1GHz single-core Atom processor. The delays to my input were excruciating. For example, when I zoomed in or out of IE, it took several seconds for the screen to respond to my gestures. The latency is too great to work around, and I could never predict the results of what I’d done. I can’t imagine how the ViewPad would handle a bloated app like Office. Even simple tasks like opening the Start menu showed noticeable lags.

If you can handle the slow performance, beware the poor touch interface. Windows 7 is terrible at handling touch input — many buttons and links require very precisely positioned taps on screen elements that are usually frustratingly small; I typically had to tap multiple times to activate a control. Windows is inconsistent: Some controls just needed a tap near them, while others — even in the same dialog box or window — required a precise tap. It feels like you’re playing darts with your finger.

05.8
11

Microsoft Office 2010 takes on all comers

by admin ·

Microsoft Office 2010 takes on all comers: SoftMaker Office 2010
For several years now, SoftMaker Office has been accruing a reputation as a low-cost replacement for the Microsoft Office product line. It’s indeed much cheaper than Office 2010: $79 to Office’s $149, $279, or $499 (the MSRPs for the Home and Student, Home and Business, and Professional versions, respectively). For those who don’t exclusively require Word, it’s a very strong contender. It’s also been written with much more of an eye toward integration with Windows than the OpenOffice.org family; for example, the Windows 7 Taskbar jump lists are supported.

 

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The suite features replacements for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint in much the same way that IBM Lotus Symphony strips the OpenOffice.org suite down to its three most essential programs. A single copy of the program can be used on up to three PCs, with no copy protection or other restrictions. Academic pricing ($34.95 per copy) is also available, but there’s no need to purchase different versions of the program for work and home.

The best way to see SoftMaker Office’s much-vaunted document compatibility in action is to grab the 30-day trial version of the product, open documents in it side-by-side with your existing program, and see how they look. SoftMaker Office has its own native document formats for each program, but it does a strikingly sound job of reading and interpreting Office’s native formats. It can also handle some of the OpenDocument formats used by OpenOffice.org.

TextMaker, SoftMaker’s word processor, is the most likely place to start testing how well the suite works with your existing files. With most every document I threw at it from my own collection, everything from relatively complex style-driven formatting to annotations and corrections was preserved. The programmers also took the trouble to make many individual features behave like their counterparts in Microsoft Office, such as the way corrections can be viewed in a callout pane to the side of the text. OpenOffice.org and its derivatives do the same thing, but often lose the name of whoever submitted a given correction. TextMaker preserved the names properly (as did Symphony’s word processor). Details like this position TextMaker as that much more attractive to users who care about preserving document fidelity.

PlanMaker, the suite’s spreadsheet program, supports up to 65,536 rows and works with both older and newer Excel documents. It opened existing spreadsheets better than any of the OpenOffice.org variants, but I still ran into some hitches. When I opened the mortgage calculator spreadsheet, it displayed the charts properly but didn’t recalculate the charts when I changed the data. Even forcing a recalculation of the charts from the program menu didn’t work. Also, PlanMaker doesn’t open OpenDocument-format spreadsheets (.ods), though TextMaker opens word processing documents in the OpenDocument format (.odt).

SoftMaker Presentations had some similar file format hitches. PowerPoint 2007/2010 presentations (.pptx) are not yet supported, and neither are OpenDocument presentation files (.odp), but files in the older PowerPoint (.ppt) format load and run very well. In-slide animation and transitions also work. One key omission from Presentations is the lack of a feature like PowerPoint’s synchronized multiscreen presentation mode. This allows a presenter to run the presentation on one display, such as a projector, while having his notes for the presentation visible on his notebook display. With Presentations, it is possible to run the slideshow on one display while manually browsing the notes for the presentation on another, but it’s not quite the same.

All SoftMaker Office applications use a scripting language that’s based on Microsoft’s own VBA for application automation, and the suite includes an editor (BasicMaker) for creating and debugging scripts. Note that while SoftMaker’s scripting language is similar to VBA, this doesn’t mean existing Office documents with VBA automation can be used as-is. You’d have to export the code from those documents, reimport it into BasicMaker, and then modify it line by line. I did like the program’s PDF exporter, which is on a par with OpenOffice.org’s excellent tool.

05.6
11

Death by Facebook: MySpace bids expected, Friendster transitions

by admin ·

Bids are expected to be received for social networking site MySpace by the end of the week, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday. News Corp, which acquired the site in 2005 for $580 billion, is said to be seeking bids of at least $100 billion for the site.

At least a half-dozen companies are said to be considering bids, including several equity firms and Criterion Capital Partners LLC, owners of social networking site Bebo. The structures of the deals are not known although it is said that some include News Corp retaining a small stake.

 

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The news confirms comments made in January by CEO Mike Jones that the company was considering a sale. What interested parties plan to do with the site is unknown: it may continue to operate as it currently has or be merged into an existing property.

Video site Vevo has also been rumored to have shown interest although it is believed to have backed away from making a deal, the WSJ reports. Either way, it appears that News Corp is set to take a major hit on its now six-year-old investment — a victim of the meteoric rise of Facebook.

As usage of that social networking site exploded, interest among consumers in MySpace waned. Last month it had 36.1 million unique visitors, half of what it had just a year before and its lowest traffic total since shortly after the merger occurred. Even an attempted refocus was not the solution to MySpace’s woes.

That effort, announced in October, switched the focus away from social networking among friends and turned MySpace into an entertainment hub. So far, there has been little evidence that the change has stopped the site’s slide into irrelevancy, unfortunately.

In related news, another social networking site is also exiting the business. Friendster announced this week that it would delete most profile information after May 31, as it looks to transition into a gaming site. The company was one of the pioneers in the social networking space when it first launched in 2002, but found itself first trumped by the rise of MySpace and then later by Facebook.

05.5
11

Servers made huge rebound in 2010, but sales will be slower this year

by admin ·

Perhaps Apple chose the wrong time to get out of the server market. The company stopped selling Xserve at the end of January. Now the 2010 server numbers are in, and they’re looking pretty good. Server shipments grew 16.8 percent during 2010 and revenue by 13.2 percent, year over year, according to Gartner. It was a remarkable turnaround compared to 2009, when shipments and revenue fell 16.6 percent and 18.3 percent, respectively. Manufacturers shipped 8.8 million servers for the year, generating $48.8 billion in revenue.

 

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Gartner largely credited the rebound to x86 server upgrades delayed by the economic crisis set in motion by the September 2008 stock market crash. “2010 was a year that saw pent-up x86-based server demand produce some significant growth on a worldwide level,” Jeffrey Hewitt, Gartner research vice president, said in a statement. “The introduction of new processors from Intel and AMD toward the end of 2009 helped fuel a pretty significant replacement cycle of servers that had been maintained in place during the economic downturn in 2009.”

Blade server revenue rose by 29.5 percent and shipments by 12.6 percent. HP and IBM led shipments, with 47.3 percent and 25.4 percent market share, respectively. In the broader server market, IBM and HP fought for revenue leadership, both topping $15 billion, with 31.4 percent and 30.8 percent share, respectively. However, HP revenue growth more than doubled IBM’s. That said, IBM had much better margins, shipping fewer servers (1.16 million) than HP (2.8 million). HP ended the year at No. 1 in shipments and revenue — 31.7 percent and 31.4 percent, respectively.

Fourth Quarter 2010

On the other hand, perhaps Apple got out of the server market in the nick of time. While Gartner expects server shipments to grow in 2011, the pace will be slower. The analyst firm estimates that the replacement cycle peaked in 2010. Fourth-quarter shipments foreshadow the trend. Shipments grew only by 6.5 percent, although revenue rose a more robust 16.4 percent. Manufacturers shipped 706,202 servers during Q4, generating $4.3 billion in revenue.

Still, the market may not yet have pushed through its growth potential. “We also need to recognize that the market is still in a fairly tentative recovery mode,” Adrian O’Connell, Gartner research director said in a statement. Many companies are still in cost-containment mode and, although 2010 growth levels were strong, we’re still some way off the revenue highs that we saw in 2007.”

Dell and IBM had strongest revenue growth — 26.4 percent — during fourth quarter. Shipments rose 3.8 percent and 6.9 percent respectively. IBM ranked No.1 in revenue share (35.5 percent), while HP lead in shipments (32.1 percent) — another sign of IBM’s higher margins.

Every region brought double-digit growth but Japan, where server shipments declined by 4.4 percent, during Q4. Asia-Pacific: 22.4 percent. EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa: 10.4 percent. Latin America: 12.3 percent. North America 24.5 percent. But, again, most of the growth came in x86 servers.

As it typically does, Gartner singled out EMEA, where HP’s huge success is upsetting RISC and Unix server shipments. HP had a colossal 43.6 percent share of server shipments (307,959 units) — or more than the rest of the top-5 combined. “The x86 market is becoming ever more critical to the overall server market,” O’Connell said in the statement, emphasizing that in fourth quarter, x86 revenue accounted for two-thirds of total server revenue.

With x86’s rise came legacy servers’ demise, with RISC and Itanium Unix system revenues falling 19.3 percent year over year. “These weak results are compounded by product transitions but are also indicative of the positioning difficulties that Unix vendors are facing,” O’Connell explained. “The challenge remains for Unix vendors to move upstream and fight for mainframe business, whilst also defending against Windows and Linux encroachments into their own installed bases.”

05.4
11

New Wi-Fi gear aims to wipe out Ethernet edge switches

by admin ·

A third new service is a patent-pending technology called Orthogonal Array Beam Forming (OABF). WLAN vendors over the past two years have been adding support for various optional parts of the 11n standard, (see from May 2010, “Major Wi-Fi changes ahead”) including transmit beam forming (sometimes “beamforming”). The same waveform is sent over 11n’s multiple antennas, with the magnitude and phase adjusted at each transmitter to focus the beam direction toward a particular receiver. This increases the signal’s gain so it’s more stable, and can be “steered around” interferers so it’s more reliable.

 

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[Ruckus Wireless in 2009 was the first to introduce beam forming for 11n products, exploiting its unique multi-component antenna design. Wireless blogger Craig Mathias used that introduction to explore the topic.]

Meru has created what it says is a more fine-grained alternative. Each Wi-Fi signal is made up of about 60 sub-carriers over a wide swath of spectrum, says Graham Melville, Meru’s director of product management. Meru’s code can optimize each of the sub-carriers and the result, he says, is an improvement in gain, or sensitivity, on the order of 8-10 dB.

The result of the improved gain is a higher signal quality and higher data rates: where Meru saw 36Mbps before applying its beamforming technology, it saw 54Mbps after, for example. “It stays at the high data rates because the signal is stronger, and better quality,” Melville says.

The new access points also can use the optional Meru Proactive Spectrum Analysis as part of another service, called Air Traffic Services. One of the AP400 radios can be assigned the job of continually monitoring the Wi-Fi radio frequencies for unauthorized radios, analyzing the spectrum usage and interference, and running Meru’s integrated wireless intrusion prevention system.

Another network service is called Mobile Application Segregation: administrators can create a dedicated channel for individual applications or groups of them, high definition video, or wireless VoIP.

John Cox covers wireless networking and mobile computing for “Network World.”

05.3
11

FSF: Microsoft is Bound by GPLv3 Terms If It Distributes GPLv3 Code

by admin ·

Last month, Microsoft’s legal department proclaimed it doesn’t consider itself bound to the terms of version 3 of the General Public License, with respect to certificates it distributed for software, services, and support from Novell. Today, the Free Software Foundation responded by saying if Microsoft distributes software covered by GPLv3, then it’s bound by the terms of that license.

 

 

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“Microsoft cannot by any act of anticipatory repudiation divest itself of its obligation to respect others’ copyrights, reads today’s FSF statement. “If Microsoft distributes our works licensed under GPLv3, or pays others to distribute them on its behalf, it is bound to do so under the terms of that license. It may not do so under any other terms; it cannot declare itself exempt from the requirements of GPLv3.”

The crux of the dispute centers around whether, when Microsoft agreed to issue certificates for Novell’s customers, it effectively distributed software on Novell’s behalf. Microsoft has made the case that Novell is the distributor in this case, and that it’s just picking up the tab.

The reason why it all matters is because version 3 specifically declares that a licensee doesn’t have the right to claim to hold anyone to whom it distributes that code free from patent obligations. The basic theory here is that no distributor can claim ownership of any part of the software, so it can’t then presume to hold someone to whom it distributes that software free from liability or infringement for it.

FSF’s motivation may be to find a way to legally extend some of that privilege Microsoft granted to Novell last year, to everyone else who might be a recipient of that same software even if Novell’s not the distributor. That’s probably why Section 11 of the new GPL reads, in part, as follows: “If, pursuant to or in connection with a single transaction or arrangement, you convey, or propagate by procuring conveyance of, a covered work, and grant a patent license to some of the parties receiving the covered work authorizing them to use, propagate, modify or convey a specific copy of the covered work, then the patent license you grant is automatically extended to all recipients of the covered work and works based on it.”

Last July, Microsoft’s proclamation contained the following: “While there have been some claims that Microsoft’s distribution of certificates for Novell support services, under our interoperability collaboration with Novell, constitutes acceptance of the GPLv3 license, we do not believe that such claims have a valid legal basis under contract, intellectual property, or any other law. In fact, we do not believe that Microsoft needs a license under GPL to carry out any aspect of its collaboration with Novell, including its distribution of support certificates, even if Novell chooses to distribute GPLv3 code in the future.”

Microsoft went on to say its Novell agreement does not grant any patent rights to any of Novell’s customers, through its distributed certificates or otherwise – meaning, it’s not granting Novell’s customers the rights to use software whose rightful ownership Microsoft wants to retain the right to contest later. However, the company did decide to rescind the portion of its certificates which grant recipients the right to receive support on GPLv3 licensed code from Novell – which was actually in compliance with an earlier FSF request.

But the FSF didn’t want last month’s proclamation to be the last word. “Microsoft has said that it expects respect for its so-called ‘intellectual property’ – a propaganda term designed to confuse patent law with copyright and other unrelated laws, and to muddy the different issues they raise,” reads the close of the FSF’s statement today. “We will ensure – and, to the extent of our resources, assist other GPLv3 licensors in ensuring – that Microsoft respects our copyrights and complies with our licenses.”

In the meantime, the issue of whether issuing a certificate toward the purchase of software by someone else constitutes legal distribution of someone else’s software, remains open.

05.2
11

First ‘Bluetooth Killer’ Wi-Fi Direct hardware gets certified

by admin ·

Wi-Fi Direct certification has begun. The Wi-Fi Alliance announced today that products from Atheros, Broadcom, Intel, Ralink, Realtek, and Cisco will be the first Certified Wi-Fi Direct hardware in the test bed for the new wireless networking standard.

The key feature of the new Wi-Fi Direct standard is that it lets devices with 802.11 wireless radios communicate directly with one another without the need of a wireless router between them. Wi-Fi Direct devices near one another can transfer content at speeds 25 times faster than they could with Bluetooth 2.0. As a result, the standard has been referred to as a Bluetooth Killer in IEEE meetings.

 

 

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“We designed Wi-Fi Direct to unleash a wide variety of applications which require device connections, but do not need the internet or even a traditional network,” said Edgar Figueroa, CEO of the Wi-Fi Alliance.  “Wi-Fi Direct empowers users to connect devices – when, where and how they want to, and our certification program delivers products that work well together, regardless of the brand.”

Because it’s a Wi-Fi Alliance software standard, it has the added benefits of legacy compatibility with standard Wi-Fi client devices, support for WPA2 security, and widespread support from the hardware industry.

“Now that the final certification is in place, we expect that Wi-Fi Direct will enhance the tremendous growth of this already burgeoning market,” Michael Hurlston, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Broadcom’s WLAN business said today. “Consumers will be able to connect whenever and wherever they want, unleashing a new realm of applications for device-to-device connectivity.”

Broadcom’s first Wi-Fi Direct certified product is a multi-antenna dual-band 802.11n PCIe card, but the company’s participation in these early stages of development is significant because it’s a majority player in the 802.11n Wi-Fi chipset business for mobile handsets.