Tag Archive: walt mossberg

E-Reader vs. iPad


My wife started reading e-books downloaded from the library on her iPad 2. Indoors the print is very readable, but it loses some of the sharpness in bright light. Some of her friends suggested the Kindle Paperwhite as a better reader in all types of light. What is your opinion?


All current color tablets use a screen technology that washes out in sunlight and can become almost unreadable in direct, bright sunlight. The Kindle monochrome e-readers, including the Paperwhite, use a different technology that does well in all kinds of light. However, I have never noticed any degradation of screen readability on iPads or other quality color tablets in bright indoor light.


Is it fair to say that the iPad Air, like its predecessors, is designed more for content consumption than content creation, and that someone who really needs a computer but also wants a tablet (and can’t afford both) would do better with something like the new Surface?


The iPad can be a fine productivity and creativity tool, with or without an accessory keyboard, depending on the app you are using. Business email and calendars, or the editing of office documents, work fine on the iPad, as do many drawing applications. You can even sign legal documents on it electronically. However, if you are looking for all the functions of a PC, a full Windows 8 tablet like the Surface 2 Pro would be a better choice, because it runs all the programs a Windows computer does.


In the new Mac OS X operating system, Mavericks, it appears it is not possible to sync Notes, Contacts and other data using iTunes via a cable connection. Is this true?


Yes. Apple says: “In Mavericks, OS X syncs Contacts, Calendars and Notes using iCloud.” (That’s Apple’s Internet cloud service.) The company adds that, if you make changes to your data and don’t have access to the Internet, OS X will sync the data the next time an Internet connection is available.

Email Walt at mossberg@wsj.com.

mossberg swisher murdoch 520x245 AllThingsD reportedly courted by Conde Nast and Hearst as its News Corp contract comes up for renewal

Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. could be calling it quits in its relationship with the tech blog AllThingsD…or it could end up extending its contract as expected. Sources tell Reuters that the contract between the two companies is set to expire at the end of this year. Additionally, it’s reported that the publication is receiving ‘inbound interest’ from potential buyers.

Although run by co-executive editors Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg, AllThingsD is wholly owned by Dow Jones and is a member of the Wall Street Journal’s Digital Network. Dow Jones, if you recall, was purchased by News Corp for $5 billion in August 2007. It added to Murdoch’s growing empire of media companies, including Fox News Channel, its financial network unit, the New York Post, and others.

Sources say that Swisher and Mossberg have been asked to deliver a business plan to News Corp by next week to Robert Thomson, the former Wall Street Journal managing editor who will be taking over News Corp’s publishing unit when it is spun off.

Companies that have been rumored to have expressed interest in the tech publication include Conde Nast and Hearst. Although there is some speculation that former Yahoo and News Corp executive Ross Levinsohn could be interested in bringing AllThingsD into Guggenheim Digital Media. His firm owns Billboard, Hollywood Reporter, and AdWeek.

Reuters has said that AOL could be a potential suitor, but AllThingsD has said previously that talks were “preliminary at best”.

Should a split occur, sources say that News Corp could retain the brand for itself, leaving Swisher and Mossberg to start anew, but Reuters says that in typical situations, a deal could be worked out that allow the founders to keep the name.

Besides reporting about technology, AllThingsD also puts on several regarded conferences each year. It recently held its Dive into Media event and one of the most sought-after tickets is its D Conference, which it has held for the past decade. It is at this meeting where industry bigwigs and innovators come to talk, including Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, and even Murdoch himself.

The news is interesting in the fact that News Corp. is in the middle of restructuring itself in the wake of its phone-hacking scandal last year. It has mulled over a proposal to split itself into two entities between its publishing and entertainment businesses. The Wall Street Journal says that while a final decision hasn’t been made, it’s believed that the publishing side will be smaller than its counterpart — something that has been slow-growing.

It could be that with all this shake up, some are thinking that AllThingsD could be an unfortunate casualty.

We’ve reached out to AllThingsD for comment and will update if we hear back.

Reuters: News Corp, popular tech blog contemplate split – sources

Photo credit: Dan Farber/Flickr

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