Apple and the Dangers of Lock-In

I’m wading through the Qualcomm answer to Apple’s lawsuit against it and when I hit page 46 (item 4 bullet 4) I had an “oh crap” moment. Qualcomm is alleging that Apple is intentionally crippling certain iPhones so that users can’t tell they are using inferior parts in some of them. It seems Apple has gone to a dual-supplier model in an apparent attempt to force Qualcomm to drop its prices, but the second supplier apparently builds a significantly inferior product—so inferior in fact that even after Apple cripples the Qualcomm-based iPhones they’re still significantly better. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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Lenovo’s Crapware Mess: Lessons Learned

It hasn’t been a great month for Lenovo, which has been doing very well otherwise. Currently the company is the worldwide market leader in PCs, has the most powerful corporate PC brand, just picked up IBM’s x86 server business and, with Motorola, it has become one of the world-wide powers in cell phones. Oh, and its Yoga Tablet 2 rivals Microsoft’s Surface as the strongest alternative to the iPad. But Lenovo also put a questionable software product called “Superfish” on its consumer laptops, and not only is the company now doing image damage control, it has a class action lawsuit to contend with. Let’s talk about how this situation degraded so badly. For more information, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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Diablo Rises with SanDisk/IBM While OCZ Sinks With Toshiba
Jan21

Diablo Rises with SanDisk/IBM While OCZ Sinks With Toshiba

There is growing enterprise adoption of flash memory in its various flavors – solid-stated drives (SSDs), all-flash and hybrid storage arrays, server storage (PCIe) and server memory – but as with any industry, there are winners and losers. At the same time SSD pioneer OCZ has received court approval to be acquired by Toshiba, flash storage vendor SANdisk has announced it is shipping the ULLtraDIMM SSD line, based on the flash-based Memory Channel Storage offering from Diablo Technologies, as well as its first OEM customer, IBM. Last week Toshiba, a manufacturer of flash memory, agreed to acquire all of OCZ’s enterprise and consumer SSD business, as well as the OCZ brand, for $35 million. This week SanDisk officially confirmed that its Diablo-based ULLtraDIMM drives will be used by IBM under the eXFlash DIMM brand name, initially as options for its System x3850 and x3950 X6 servers, providing up to 12.8TB of flash capacity. Storage guru George Crump, Storage Switzerland, has been covering the move to memory channel storage for the last six months and calls it the next logical upgrade from drive-attached and PCIe-attached flash storage. “By putting the flash directly on the memory bus traditional storage latency is almost completely eliminated.” Writing about IBM’s new servers, he noted that customers install server side flash solutions specifically to address performance problems, and for most environments every additional ‘ounce’ of that performance can generate an additional ‘pound’ of revenue. “Memory channel storage is clearly the next frontier in server side flash acceleration. Its 3X reduction in latency can produce many more ounces of performance and its density allows that performance to be achieved at a more cost effective price.” The most important aspect of the IBM announcement is that the new generation of EXA (also known as X6) enables x86-based servers to access up to 12 TB of storage cache that can be deployed on Flash DIMMs (dual in-line memory modules) that are attached to the processor via the memory bus, said Joe Clabby, Clabby Analytics. “As a result this innovation, I now feel very comfortable recommending IBM’s System x solutions with X6 architecture to enterprises looking to run large-scale ERP (enterprise resource planning), large database business analytics, large database serving, and high-IOPs virtualization workloads.” Analyst Charles King, Pund-IT, believes IBM’s eXFlash memory-channel storage should enable customers to capture the maximum value offered by innovative new flash technologies to enhance cloud, analytics and other virtualization-dependent workloads. “In essence, IBM’s new X6 platform has the I/O performance and memory scalability necessary to support and virtualize large, intensive business applications, including the most mission critical workloads.” Forrester analyst Richard Fichera called eXFlash...

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