The Sizzle

Issue 155 - Thursday, 26th May 2016 - Donkey Courtroom

Today's edition of The Sizzle is reduced in size because I'm on holiday. Normal Sizzle will resume on May 30th.


Microsoft not making any more consumer smartphones, pisses on the Nokia legacy
Microsoft has taken a US$950m hit on its US$7.2b purchase of Nokia's phone division and announced they're no longer making consumer smartphones. Instead, they'll focus on "enterprise" smartphones - whatever that means. Basically, Windows Mobile is a dumpster fire right now with no future except perhaps to add further fuel it, rather than extinguish it and build something nice. Microsoft will still license Windows 10 out to whoever is brave enough to manufacture and sell a smartphone running the beleaguered (but still rather good, albeit outdated) mobile OS.

Xiaomi rip off DJI and make a cheap, cool looking drone
Xiaomi has announced the Mi Drone, a US$380 quadcopter that looks very much like a DJI product. There's a version with a 4K camera and a 1080p camera, will fly for around 27 minutes on a full charge, uses GPS for navigation and you use your smartphone as a viewer whilst using the remote control to pilot the Mi Drone. It's got all the usual features you expect of a drone like auto-nav, geo fences and more. It'll be launched on Xiaomi's crowdfunding page today, but we don't know when it will ship. Keep an eye on DealExtreme I guess.

Twitter fiddles around the edges, gives us more characters to Tweet with
It was rumoured for a while, but Twitter has made some tweaks to the fundamental 140 character limit. Attachments and URLs no longer consume your 140 character quota, neither do usernames at the start of a tweet. You'll also be able to quote and retweet your own tweets. The big change for some people is that any @ replies you create on Twitter that aren't a direct reply, will be seen by everyone, not just people who follow both you and the person you're @ replying to. Good, I guess, but probably a bit too late in the game and not the sort of change most people are looking for - i.e: relief from the constant harassment.


Pebble goes back to the crowdfunding well to pimp new products
Pebble is crowdfunding some new gear - the Pebble 2 (the nerdy looking one), Pebble Time 2 (the classy looking one) and a new product called the Pebble Core. The Pebble Core is an interesting device that seems to be a smart watch, without a screen, with a 3G radio inside, that can be programmed by your smartphone to do stuff. Pebble is calling it a "keychain computer". Will be very interesting to see what the Pebble community does with the Pebble Core. There's a mildly thing about Pebble's new stuff on Backchannel that Steven Levy wrote after visiting Pebble HQ.

Here endeth the sizzle (until tomorrow!)

The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon. Like The Sizzle? Tell your friends!