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NZ Tech Podcast 214: Windows 10 — Google, Apple, Microsoft security — Spark and Vodafone
Posted on 29-Jan-2015 07:17Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

 I’m back on the NZ Tech Podcast with Paul Spain (@paulspain) and Nathan Mercer. We talk security wars between Google, Apple and Microsoft, changes at Spark and Vodafone including Chris Quin stepping down as CEO of Spark Home, Mobile, Business. We also discuss Cloudflare NZ, Protools free and spent more than half the podcast talking with Nathan Mercer […] Comments (Comments)

Take Control of Apple Pages
Posted on 23-Jan-2015 14:49Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

If you find Apple Pages 5 puzzling or you want to get more out of the software Michael E. Cohen’s US$20 Take Control of Pages is a good starting point. The 266 ebook is published by TidBits Publishing (ISBN: 9781615424320). On one level Cohen has written a comprehensive user manual for the software. The user […] Comments (Comments)

Credit where credit is due on NZ tech regulation
Posted on 22-Jan-2015 12:50Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

From Andrew Cushen at InternetNZ writing in Flexibility of regulation for technology.: …the government moving relatively quickly to respond to technical innovation in a sensible, considered matter, and that seeks to accommodate that innovation rather than stifle it. …I hope that when we continue to talk to the government about challenges that regulation creates for […] Comments (Comments)

Looming customer service cuts at Vodafone
Posted on 20-Jan-2015 11:08Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

The New Zealand Herald reports Vodafone plans to trim staff numbers across the board and cut the customer service department by up to 100 jobs.. The proposal, outlined in an internal document obtained by the Herald, is part of a restructuring expected to bring 200 to 250 job cuts. Vodafone says the average revenue per customer […] Comments (Comments)

Fast broadband: How does New Zealand shape up internationally?
Posted on 20-Jan-2015 08:08Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

New Zealand is behind the international pack when it comes to broadband speeds. The table shows the challenge ahead of the network builders: Chorus. Ultrafast Fibre, Northpower and Enable Networks. We have long way to go before we match the world leaders. At the time of the last Akamai report, third quarter 2014, New Zealand ranked 44 […] Comments (Comments)

Uber: The lost opportunity
Posted on 19-Jan-2015 13:16Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

At Whatisitwellington Ian Apperley says the fuss over Uber operating in New Zealand is a fight between dinosaurs and exciting new business models: The War on Uber in New Zealand: Dinosaur business models meet new tech. He writes: … the Taxi Federation would be better working on new technologies for its members rather than engaging in […] Comments (Comments)

Trolling, dumb-arsed headline questions
Posted on 17-Jan-2015 12:40Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

I’m not one for new year resolutions, but IF I had one it would be to not write trolling, dumb-arsed questions in headlines — Bill Bennett (@billbennettnz) January 16, 2015 …and I’m sure if you dig hard enough you can find a few old ones with my byline on them. In my defence, back in […] Comments (Comments)

Tasman Global Access addresses internet centre of gravity shift
Posted on 16-Jan-2015 17:14Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

New Zealand’s internet centre of gravity is shifting. Until now New Zealand data traffic was mainly east to and from the US. That’s changing. Increasingly our traffic goes west across the Tasman to Australia and Asia. This will probably accelerate now cloud computing giants like Amazon and Microsoft offer data centres in Sydney and Melbourne. […] Comments (Comments)

Testing Tech21 Impact Shell on an iPhone 6
Posted on 8-Jan-2015 18:28Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

While Apple’s iPhone 6 is thin, it feels robust enough for most use. Even so with prices starting at NZ$1000 you might want to protect a phone from drops and scratches. Last August I tested the Tech21 Impact Shell case for the iPhone 5S. More recently the UK-based Tech21 sent me a Classic Shell cover to […] Comments (Comments)

Internet NZ, price rises, greed and cartels
Posted on 8-Jan-2015 13:56Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

InternetNZ isn’t happy about ISP prices hikes after the Commerce Commission raised the wholesale price of a copper line. In Not sure if uncertainty causes price rise, or just greed, InternetNZ CEO Jordan Carter says he doubt price rises are necessary. He says: Whether they need to do this to cover the costs of wholesale isn’t proven, and […] Comments (Comments)

Vodafone’s price rise
Posted on 7-Jan-2015 08:30Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

Vodafone will raise the price of most fixed line plans by $4 a month from next month. It says the price rise will affect about 300,000 customers. The price rise follows the Commerce Commission draft decision over the price lines company Chorus can charge telcos to use its copper network. Spark announced a similar price rise […] Comments (Comments)

NZ Herald’s steampunk view of Xero
Posted on 5-Jan-2015 16:43Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

Read the headline on Hamish Fletcher‘s High-flyer Xero crashes to worst spot and you might think the accounting software as a service company is in trouble. Technically speaking Fletcher is right. Xero shares lost 50 percent of their value during 2014. They fell 65 percent from their highest point. In that sense it does make the company the […] Comments (Comments)

Apple productivity: 2015 edition
Posted on 4-Jan-2015 13:57Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

Last year Apple weaved its software and hardware closer together with upgrades to iOS and OS X. Together, OS X Yosemite and iOS 8.1 tighten cross-device integration. Comments (Comments)

Wake up call from Trend Micro Internet Security for Mac 2015
Posted on 22-Dec-2014 17:30Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

Apple Mac users will tell you their computers are more secure than Windows PCs. They have a point. Malware writers go for big, easy targets. Windows is a big, easy target. OS X remains small by comparison. Macs have a second advantage. OS X is based on Unix, which has baked-in security. Apple added its […] Comments (Comments)

Switching off the copper network
Posted on 18-Dec-2014 13:07Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

Labour communications spokesperson Clare Curran wants a discussion on the switch-off date for New Zealand’s copper phone network. Her call comes one year to the day after I first wrote about a copper network shutdown. I also wrote about ripping out copper in February 2014. A year ago Ovum’s Australia-based research director David Kennedy said: Tensions in […] Comments (Comments)

New Zealand broadband in 2014
Posted on 16-Dec-2014 09:32Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

Despite profits being elusive for the big players, New Zealand’s broadband market looks in good shape. There are big, largely undifferentiated ISPs and small, focused niche players. Comments (Comments)

Market share distorts thinking: Smartphones
Posted on 13-Dec-2014 08:45Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

Market share figures can look impressive. There are times when market share matters in technology. Other times market share is a red herring. It stops observers from thinking properly. Take Android’s better than 80 percent share of the smartphone market. It sounds good. Yet collectively the brands selling Android phones lose money. While Samsung, the […] Comments (Comments)

Behind the NZ broadband price rise
Posted on 11-Dec-2014 11:17Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

New Zealand customers will pay more for broadband services delivered by the copper network. Spark, Vodafone and Callplus all say they will raise prices. Let’s look behind the headlines. The price rises follow last week’s draft decision by the Commerce Commission setting the wholesale price Chorus charges for using its copper-based network. That price is […] Comments (Comments)

Microsoft hosting NZ Office 365 in Australia
Posted on 9-Dec-2014 14:29Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

From March 2015 Microsoft will host New Zealand and Australian business customers from Azure datacentres in Sydney and Melbourne. Microsoft’s new Australian Azure datacentres opened in October and will cater for Office 365 and Dynamics CRM Online customers. For most New Zealand customers the move has two implications. First, Australia is closer to New Zealand […] Comments (Comments)

Talking telco pricing dilemma on TV3 Firstline
Posted on 3-Dec-2014 16:35Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

Here I am talking with Michael Wilson on TV3 Firstline about what the Commerce Commission draft ruling on copper access prices mean for consumers and telcos. Either ISPs and their shareholders will lose money when selling broadband services or prices will go up. In the short term the intense competition might mean the industry takes most […] Comments (Comments)

Canon NZ: Aiming for world’s worst practice media relations
Posted on 2-Dec-2014 15:09Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

Congratulations Canon New Zealand. Your company has set a new low for appalling public relations. It appears you have tried to do everything possible to stop me from writing about one of your products. A press release arrived about Canon Maxify printers. They look like they would be interesting for readers of my monthly NZ Business […] Comments (Comments)

Chorus copper price ruling
Posted on 2-Dec-2014 12:05Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

If telecommunications network wholesaler Chorus was an English Premier League football club, today’s Commerce Commission revised copper access price ruling would be a nil-all draw. As every football fan knows, grinding out a nil-all draw away from home against a formidable opponent can feel almost as good as a win. It’s the kind of result […] Comments (Comments)

Microsoft disrupted
Posted on 1-Dec-2014 16:05Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

Apple's iPhone wrong-footed the entire tech sector. Microsoft had further to fall than other tech companies. Comments (Comments)

Kia Ora Netflix
Posted on 19-Nov-2014 16:14Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

Netflix will launch in New Zealand in March. The online video service say it will soon begin operation in New Zealand and Australia. Comments (Comments)

New Zealand technology journalism: the twilight years
Posted on 17-Nov-2014 09:33Tags News, Bill Bennett, by Bill Bennett

New Zealand has a vibrant and flourishing technology sector. Nobody would use those words to describe New Zealand technology journalism. Like a retirement village there are still pockets of life, but things are winding down. You can count the number of full-time technology journalists writing for New Zealand audiences on your fingers. Experienced local journalists […] Comments (Comments)

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