Scratch That Surface Off Your Christmas List, Microsoft Hasn’t Learned Squat About Marketing

Microsoft Surface, Microsoft, RIM, Tablet salesOne would think with the incredible loss that Research In Motion (RIM) has experienced over the last three years the other tech giants would take notice. Although Microsoft was the creme de la creme for decades, they’re losing traction faster than you can say the word Blackberry.

Then, last year, there was a glimmer of hope. After a string of failed product launches, less and less people turning to the latest version of Microsoft’s desktop operating system and a failed attempt at breathing life back into Windows CE, Microsoft had something that looked innovative.

The Microsoft Surface tablet, when launched at a press event, that felt reminiscent of numerous events hosted by Steve Jobs for Apple launches, they unveiled the Microsoft Surface tablets. These new tablets were going to signify the convergence between desktop and mobile in an operating system that is supposed to work effortlessly on both traditional computers and mobile.

The problem is, to get that effect people need to actually buy them.

For years on the mobile beat we saw RIM and Microsoft losing market share. To RIM’s benefit though, they stopped producing new smartphones in an effort to funnel all of their strategy on the upcoming Blackberry 10 release and hopefully winning back hardcore, security conscious enterprise and government accounts with highly needed features and sex appeal.

Microsoft on the other hand released a new phone operating system Windows Phone 7 and OEM’s like Samsung, HTC and Nokia, eagerly added Windows Phone’s to their portfolio to take some of the dependence off Android (except for Nokia who have never produced an Android device).

Well advertising firm Chitika has told the tale that confirms what Steve Ballmer has been fearing since the release of the Surface tablet.

Nobody is using them.

In fact, we all know that Apple’s iPad is the reigning leader in the tablet space, with Google’s Android powered Nexus tablets not even edging close. So how does it feel to have to swallow this pill, Google’s Nexus branded tablet family beats the Microsoft Surface family 91% to 13%. Yes, Nexus is kicking Microsoft’s ass.

Microsoft has already seen a drastic down turn in their application/software business. Millions have people have realized that for basic desktop business work, even free alternatives like Google Docs (Drive), are easier to use and gaining popularity. In fact we cringe here when someone sends us a word .doc attachment, how retro is that?

Microsoft continually blows it when it comes to marketing their products to the early adopters and developers that they so desperately need to rally around Windows 8. For instance they focus on marketing products like Microsoft Azure and Microsoft BizSpark, sure they are important business channels but by now the early adopters that want access to those products already have them.

There’s only two possible scenarios here. Either Microsoft is worried that developers, and early adopters will think their tablet products suck so bad that it will work in reverse and the other is of course that they’ve just become complete morons since Bill Gates has stepped down.

And have you even seen the stories about their epicly failed Twitter campaign #droidrage?



Rest assured Microsoft will not be at the largest startup conference in the country, click here

Ice Is Back With Some Brand New Inventions: Vanilla Ice Gives Kids Gadget Advice


Last week DIY network’s Rob “Vanilla Ice” VanWinkle appeared on the Today show to give the crew a rundown on some gadgets geared for the student. We’ve moved into an era where kids in school might not know the 90’s hero of the dance floor, but they are capable of enjoying and using these recommended gadgets earlier on in life.

Let’s face it we’re at an age where some kids, even entering kindergarten, have used mom or dad’s iPad,iPhone, Android tablet, iPad or other electronic gadget before they can even read.

Here are the gadgets that the 44-year-old television and rap sensation highlighted in the segment called “Gadgets For Making The Grade”

Boogie Board e-writer capable of storing up to 200 pages in a digital notebook. This device is about as simple is at gets you can write things down, free hand style, and then sync your entries onto your computer at home.

Echo Smart Pen- allows you to record audio onto a pen while you’re writing on the specialized notebook.

Verbatim Tuff-N-Tiny 8gb flash drive. These extremely small flash drives run just $9.99 and clip to a key chain. VanWinkle described these particular flash drives as “Simple as a pimple” perhaps with lyrics like that he’s working on a new album.

Kensington Folio Tablet- This unique iPad case holds the iPad on the left, it has a three-ring binder in the middle and an actual paper note taking pad on the right side. Ice says that it’s the modern-day Trapper Keeper. $55

HP DeskJet 3050A printer is an all in one inkjet printer with total wireless connectivity. You can print from your laptop, desktop, smartphone or tablet without a usb cable. It retails for $79.99 at the likes of

Voltaic Converter Solar BackPack. Sorry but this backpack has nothing on the PowerBag, but it’s solar so I guess that makes it a bit nifty. With the Voltaic BackPack you can charge your smart devices in school while they’re stored away in your backpack. This will set you back $200

Isafe built-in alarm backpack. This backpack has an alarm built into the strap. As Ice says “if somebody tries to gank your backpack” you can hit the alarm. It’s a very loud, irritating alarm sound that should summon help or scare your assailant away.  The company says you can hear it 1000 yards away. This backpack is just $59.99

Sol Republic Soundtracks headphones. These headphones cut out background noise and can be mixed and matched to create your own design. They retail for $99.

Keurig Mini Plus Brewing System. These single shot “K-Cup” coffee makers are all the rage. This particular model is designed for the traveler, or student, someone with limited space. This version of the K-Cup brewer costs just $99.

Check out Ice’s video from the Today Show here:

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


Source: MSNBC

New Gear: Satechi Introduces Amazing New 10,00mah Portable Energy Station


Satechi, a San Diego manufacturer of sleek looking, useful accessories has introduced one bad ass portable battery charger.

For most tech people, gadget geeks and early adopters, long gone are the days where one simple little portable charger will work. Juice Packs, and Power Skins are great for the average user but for people like us we need power, and lots of it.

We always travel with a PowerBag and some other big charging apparatus.

Satechi has found a way to answer that need while keeping a sleek design, something that they are known for, form and function.

The Satechi Power Station is a 10,000mah portable battery. Not only is it well designed from a style perspective but for function as well.

Satechi has included the traditional 1amp outlet but also the more powerful 2 amp outlet which means YES your tablet or iPad can charge as well.

At just under 6oz and only 5.5″ long the Satechi Power Station isn’t too big or too heavy.


For more info or to buy one click here

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a-Jays One+ EarBuds Ridiculous Sound, Even More Ridiculous Packaging

This would be the review that you’ve been looking for. If you’ve met me or seen me in the last six months, since CES 2012 in Las vegas I’ve probably told you about the most amazing pair of earbuds I’ve ever heard, the a-Jays One+ ear buds.

The earbuds are great and I am NOT an earbuds guy. I am a Sony MDR-7506 lover and I also have a pair of over the ear headphones that I love from House of Marley.  However one pair of earbuds were going to change me into an earbud believer. Those earbuds would be the a-Jays One+ EarBuds.

Boy was I happy when I received an overnight from the office at the hotel I am staying at with the a-Jays One+ earbuds in them.

Here’s why you’re not seeing that review though. It’s the worst ever consumer packaging in the world. In over 10 years of having some sort of position involving researching or reviewing consumer electronic products and accessories I’ve never seen packaging as bad as this. Heck the boys who used to rip off Sam Goody in my High School to get cassettes had better luck cracking open the theft deterrent system.

At first I followed the instructions explicitly pushing the button that was behind the little round sticker.

To no avail.

I then borrowed a pair of scissors from the front desk.  Nope didn’t work out

Next I tried a flat head screw driver. Still nothing

Then I tried I gigantic steak knife trying to both pry the packaging open and then slicing through it, still no avail.

The last thing I tried was to light the mother f*cking packaging on fire… Still to no avail.  I guess they had their packaging made by the same people who make Otter Boxes and Griffin Survivor series cases.. I can’t imagine the frustration that actual customers will experience with this crazy packaging.

One things for sure Im going to get these B*tches open to do the review at some point because they are indeed the best sounding earbuds I’ve ever heard, and then, I’m going to store my iPhone in the packaging.. move over Otterbox.

Normally we only let Brent set things on fire.

Exclusive: Hands On With Nyko PlayPad Pro

Nyko, the brand known for its third party controller for consols such as the XBox360, Play Station 3 and Wii is coming to Android with its PlayPad Pro which we got a hands on with at e3. From someone who doesn’t game any more, The PlayPad Pro won me over as a must have accessory to play games on my Android tablet. The controller, looks to be based upon the Xbox360 one pairs to your Android tablet running 3.0 and newer via Bluetooth.

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[Opinion] The Facebook Phone And What You’ll Actually See




This article is based on theories in which I’ve presented to people before certain sites took what was an idea and called it their own. I’m basing a couple of the features/products within based on speculation and possible rumors in which have happened in the past and ones we’ll surely hear in the close future when it comes to the Mythical Facebook Phone…


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Groupon To Go Head To Head Against Square On Mobile Transactions

Groupon the daily deals site is reportedly interested in entering the Mobile Commerce field to compete with the likes of Square and most recently PayPal. The company who is embroiled in controversy in almost anything it does, from how it reports it’s profits to how it stock raises, wants to handle your money.

Business Insider is reporting that it’ll charge 1.8% transaction fee and a $0.15 per transaction charge for payments that they process. Whereas Square charges 2.75% with no per transaction fee and  PayPal Here charges 2.7%, also with no transaction fee. In a risky move, Groupon will provide not only the device that retailers can charge customers, but also an iPod Touch to take the payments with. Like Yahoo, which recently made waves by releasing a semi browser for the web, and an iOS application, Groupon which keeps failing and is being mishandled would rather throw as many things against a wall and see what sticks versus fixing what’s wrong and instead is trying to hide from this.

Source: Business Insider

Gear: House Of Marley Stir It Up Headphones Review

Last Month we showed you the House of Marley, Conquerer Mist Ear Buds, quite possibly the best ear buds I’ve ever listened to music with. Since then, I’ve been trying out the House of Marley “Stir It Up” over the ear headphones.

As I said in my last review, the House of Marley products aren’t just some licensing agreement with another company, they are designed, distributed, and marketed by Bob Marley’s family, spear headed by Marley’s son Rohan Marley.

Rohan Marley isn’t trying to make a quick buck off of his fathers name by plastering their family name on audio products. The House of Marley is actually a movement that brings attention to social causes around the world. The Marley family and the House of Marley volunteers use the proceeds from their audio lines to fund their outreach missions. You can also bet with the Marley’s musical background playing real instruments that the sound that comes out of the House of Marley line is exceptional.

More after the break
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What’s In Your Bag: Colby Brown

In this episode of What’s In Your Bag we get up close and personal with a good friend of mine in Colby Brown. We’ve covered him more than anyone else with numerous Beyond The Lens features. He’s that much of an interesting interview so I couldn’t help it. He has been on the road and was able to take the time to inventory his gear along with sending a couple of photos…

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Rawporter Roadtrip: FOSE 2012: Griffin Shows Off Tech For Government, Military & Medical

Griffin the global music and accessory company has shown off a whole different side of their portfolio of accessories at the FOSE show in Washington DC today. We visited the FOSE show today as part of our Rawporter Roadtrip (

Griffin showed off their survivor series cases for the new iPad. These are the only government certified to military spec A10 iPad cases on the market today. We found out that some companies like Otterbox say they are “designed to meet mil spec standards” however the Griffin line is the only line that is certified mil-spec A10 approved. That means that Griffin has gone through the rigorous testing process which includes fully submersing the cases, dropping them from 6 feet and more.

The newest survivor series case, the Survivor 2 will be available in May for the iPad, iPod and iPhone however they are coming shortly after for Samsung and Motorola tablets and smartphones.

More after the break
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Sony To Launch Their 4K Camera At $9,000


In the film industry, Red cameras were all the rage for the past couple of years. However, as we’ve seen during this past CES a new format has came out called 4K. The name is derived from the horizontal resolution, which is approximately 4,000 pixels. While we saw a sneak peak at what Sony was to reveal, we are now getting more information about it. NEX-FS700E will be released at NAB and the estimated price will be around $9,000, well bellow the price Canon is to release theirs at.

With slow motion options includes 120, 240 and 480 at 960fps. As of now we are unsure as of now if the camera records internally to 1080p or the full 4K. With a June release date.


Source: Engadget

Texas Start Up Kewl, Keeps Insulin Cool And Just Landed A Cool Million

Kewl Innovations, Diabetes Insulin Cooler, Nibletz, PandodailyA Richardson Texas start up called Kewl has just completed a series A round from angel investors to the cool beat of $1 million dollars.

Kewl has one simple task, to keep insulin cool for insulin dependent diabetics. Until now diabetics who are insulin dependent had to keep their insulin in coolers, icepacks, lunchboxes or whatever else they could rig up at home to keep their medicine cool. It also meant things like making sure a hotel room they stayed in overnight had a refrigerator. That may seem easy enough but it’s one headache after another for those diabetics to try and maintain a normal lifestyle.

More after the break
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Knowing There’s NO Interest In Window Phone 7, Nokia Willing To Bribe AT&T Employees


Window Phones 7 which never picked up any steam now may get a push due to some bribing by Nokia. The Verge and other outlets are reporting that due to no one in the public actually wanting a WP7, Nokia will be bribing AT&T and their employees with their latest one. The Lumia 900 will be free for all AT&T employees as part of their “Company Use” phones.  While this isn’t a first for a manufacturer to offer a phone for free to employees as part of a program. This is the first time one paid a company over $25 million to bribe it’s employees to use it.

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What’s In Your Bag: Michael Neal

Michael Neal a photographer out of Maui, after seeing another What’s In Your Bag contacted us, and I’ve been in talks with him ever since and couldn’t wait for him to show us what was in his bag. After seeing some of the photos from his site I knew his gear was going to just be as crazy as his photos, and he didn’t disappoint.

I’m a freelance surf and nature photographer based on Maui,Hawaii. I have been shooting professionally for 7 years. My surf photos focus on the many talented surfer here on Maui, with an emphasize on the big waves of Peahi (Jaws). These images regularly appeared in magazines and websites in the USA, Europe, South Africa, and Brazil.

Maui is an awesome place and I love capturing the beauty of nature found here.

My print work in sold through many of the fine galleries on the island. Maui has some of the most endangered creatures on the planet, I work regularly with conservation groups here documenting their work.

These images are being used by the Nature Conservancy,Haleakala National Park, the Maui Ocean Center and others to promote the incredible work being done here.

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