theEweekly Wrap: 17 Oct
Google readies Android Lollipop for release
Google has said that it will begin rolling out the latest version of its Android operating system (OS), Lollipop, which will replace the current KitKat OS, at the end of the month.
Two new Nexus devices will be released to champion the Lollipop OS – a smartphone (Nexus 6) and a tablet (Nexus 9).
The Nexus 6 has been developed with Motorola, will feature a six-inch high-definition display, dual front-facing stereo speakers and a 13-megapixel camera. Google has claimed that after 15 minutes on charge, the battery will last for up to six hours.
Google worked with HTC to develop the Nexus 9 tablet, which will have an 8.9-inch screen and an optional keyboard folio, enabling it to be used like a mini laptop.
A Google blog post said: "Lollipop has a consistent design across devices – an approach we call Material Design. Now content responds to your touch, or even your voice, in more intuitive ways, and transitions between tasks are more fluid."
HBO announces plans for streaming service
American cable network HBO has divulged plans to launch an online streaming platform, in an effort to compete with successful services such as Netflix and the more recently introduced Amazon Instant Video.
It is thought that HBO's equivalent will become available in the US sometime next year, and will aim to serve the country's 10 million or so broadband-only households (a figure which is said to be rising).
HBO CEO, Richard Plepler, explained that the company now feels online video streaming "is a large and growing opportunity that should no longer be left untapped. It is time to remove all barriers to those who want HBO."
In August Netflix announced that it had surpassed HBO in subscriber revenue, which is thought to have been a major catalyst for the cable network's proposed expansion into the streaming market.
HBO is famous for its high-quality shows, recent examples of which are Boardwalk Empire and True Detective – with a much-anticipated second series of the latter currently in the making.
Bono apologises for auto iTunes download
During a recent question-and-answer session, U2 frontman Bono said sorry to iTunes users who were displeased when the band's latest album was automatically downloaded to their music libraries.
The band's bassist, Adam Clayton, read out the question: "Can you please never release an album on iTunes that automatically downloads to people's playlists ever again? It's really rude."
Bono then looked into the camera and said "Oops, erm, I'm sorry about that. I had this beautiful idea, and we got carried away with ourselves – artists are prone to that kind of thing. A drop of megalomania, a touch of generosity, a dash of self-promotion."
Many iTunes users took to Twitter and Facebook when they discovered the Songs of Innocence album had been downloaded to their libraries and iPhones with their permission. The complaints were mixed, as some argued it used up valuable storage space, while others simply did not want U2 music on their devices.