The first thing that should be thrown out there is that a) this only affects ARM tablets (x86 is still wide-open), b) Medfield has brought x86/ARM relatively close in power saving qualities & c) alternative browsers CAN still be installed on Windows on ARM tablets, just not in the desktop mode - where NO apps will be allowed to be installed.
I suspect desktop mode in ARM is being maintained pretty much exclusively for Office - rumor has it Office 15 won't be ready for WinRT (Metro). Bare bones Office (I think Word/PPoint/Excel) will come pre-installed on Windows for ARM. Office contains so many components that rely on IE (or, at least the Trident engine) that it's been thrown in to enhance compatibility with Office on ARM desktop.
.net on ARM doesn't exist, nor does Win32 (at least not one we can use as devs) - WinRT uses C# & JS, but doesn't use the .net framework. There's a completely new set of native libraries for system functions. If .net or Win32 were ever fully ported to ARM, then the restrictions might be different, as more legacy apps would be usable on ARM desktop.
But in reality, the ARM devices we have currently are pretty locked down - this really isn't any different. If Windows for ARM didn't include Desktop mode, there'd be no complaining. Since the Windows desktop is the 'wild west' in terms of what apps are allowed to do, it's no surprise that Microsoft would attempt to limit that in favor of driving developers to another interface (one much more appropriate for touch, no less), in an attempt to maintain the experience.
IE can be removed in Windows 7 & 8 through the Features panel (although I don't if that will happen with WoA), and alternative browsers can be installed via the Windows Store - but they are Metro only on ARM. In fact, if your default browser is set to something other than IE, Metro IE disappears (at least in the x86 CP).
And since NO apps will be allowed to be installed to the desktop mode on ARM (x86 will allow anything), I suspect we'll see the desktop mode go away completely by Windows 9 (maybe even earlier via service pack) on ARM - as soon as Office for Metro is ready to go.
Ultimately, if consumers are hell-bent on Firefox or Chrome or whatever alternative browser they want on the desktop, they should probably buy an x86 tablet.
I quit downloading music when I got Zune Pass. Unlimited streaming for a good price - and much more encouragement to buy an album if it meant supporting the artist. Convenience is a factor too - why go to the mall and spend $14 on a CD when you can get the album online for pennies?
Netflix has shown what will happen when music streaming services take off - the content providers will freak & jack up streaming rates exponentially. We've already seen that happen with Pandora and other internet radio.
Before Virgin was acquired by Sprint, they were an MVNO operating on Sprint's network. I wonder, then, if the rules are cascading - if an MVNO (like Boost Mobile) uses a company's back end, does the host company still maintain those records themselves?
Netflix has made it clear that they consider themselves a 'streaming business that ships a few DVDs' - this only further solidifies that.
I'd suspect that, when the time is right, Netflix will end DVD by mail distrbution and either a) Buy out RedBox or b) create a RedBox competitor. This consolidates their DVD shipping costs while getting people the new releases they want in HD formats (like BluRay). This will happen, it is inevitable.
Perhaps he was ignoring her not for the (QWERTY dumbphone) that he is ruthlessly texting on, but perhaps A) that awful music has left him in a state of confusion B) he's texting his wife or C) she talks like a mute. Either way, Microsoft's ad is way better.
Saab's new in-car 'infotainment' platform will be based on Android, and will give developers read-only access to 'over 500 sensors' in the car...which is awesome. In fact, this would make me replace my current Saab with a new one over something else.
Time Warner Cable Whining. You could have stopped there.
Here in NC, a small town called Wilson started a city-owned true fiber-to-the-home network. Shortly thereafter, my hometown of Salisbury started the process as well - and TWC spent years lobbying and complaining to the state about how they couldn't compete and blah blah blah.
Ultimately, they showed they could compete, by offering 50mb/5mb internet, whereas before, the highest tier wasn't even considered broadband because the upload was too slow.
In short - to hell with TWC. They cost $200/mo and I still can't watch ESPN3 on my Xbox.
Pathetic. What's worse is that there are so many ill-informed people that they just took the stuff down. It'd be nice if someone would challenge these fools sometime. Especially lawsuit-happy whiners like Monster. I guess I wouldn't want someone getting their feet in my 8000% markup either.
The guy Tognotti is on Twitter & LinkedIn too. Looks like a major douche.