Three years after its launch, it looks like the Samsung Galaxy S6 is done getting software updates.
Samsung has quietly removed the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 edge from its Android Security Updates page, suggesting that those devices will not receive any more updates going forward. The S6 edge+ and S6 Active are still in the Monthly Security Updates section, so it appears that they’ll still get updates for now.
The Galaxy S6 and S6 edge came out 3 years ago, so it’s not too surprising that Samsung has decided to end update support for them. That’s actually a pretty long run of update support compared to most other Android devices. Now it looks like the GS6 and GS6 edge will remain on the software that they’ve got, though, so owners may want to start thinking about picking up a new device.
Now that all of the last year’s Samsung flagships have started receiving Oreo, the South Korean company seems to have shifted its focus to the next batch of devices that will get the update. The batch will likely include the Galaxy S7/S7 edge, Galaxy A5 (2017), and Galaxy A3 (2017), as all of these devices has been spotted on the website of WiFi Alliance with Android 8.0 on board. A WiFi certification usually indicates the update roll out preparation is in last stages. While there’s currently no official information on exactly when the update will arrive, leaks and rumors so far…
The release of the Galaxy S6 back in 2015 marked a change in direction for the company after lower than expected Galaxy S5 sales. The GS6 was the first Samsung phone that truly focused on design, but that was then and this is now. The Galaxy S6 is old news, so phones from that generation are losing update support. Samsung’s way of telling you to buy a new phone?
Samsung’s update guidelines list the phones and tablets that will get patches and how often those patches happen.
Edge computing is hot right now, but not everyone understands why so many people are so focused on keeping their data in gateways or on on-premise services instead of sending it to the cloud. While it may seem like a huge shift to bring processing to the edge of the networks as opposed to sending all of the data to the cloud, for many IoT use cases, the cloud was never going to be a viable solution.
There are five primary reasons why the edge is winning when it comes to the internet of things. Three of them are technical limitations on cloud data transfers and two are dependent on business culture and the perception of cloud security. Let’s cover them.
1. Security – This is one of the favored reasons for big industrial companies. They don’t want to connect their processes to the internet because it exposes their operations to hackers and data breaches. For example, at the Honeywell User Group meeting I attended last year, most of the customers of Honeywell’s industrial automation products were loath to even put wireless infrastructure in their plants for fear of security breaches. Some of this is perception of risk, but thanks to a variety of hacks from Target’s breach — which began in its HVAC system and ended up compromising customers’ credit cards, raising concerns over hackers targeting infrastructure — this is a legitimate fear, given certain types of industrial processes.
2. IP – Related to the issue of security are concerns over proprietary data and intellectual property. High-quality sensors can be used to derive important information, such as a refinery process that counts as a trade secret. Jaganath Rao, SVP of IoT Strategy at Siemens, says that food companies are particularly sensitive to these sorts of issues. Imagine if the recipe for Coke could be inferred through its industrial data, for example.
3. Latency and resiliency – Latency is a measure of how fast information can travel over a network. Whether you are waiting for a Netflix movie to load or playing “Call of Duty,” latency matters. And when you translate digital bits into electrons or machinery, latency matters even more. In the home, for example, cloud-to-cloud services can lead to a second or two of delay when I’m turning on my lights using an app. That’s irritating. But in an industrial process, sending data from a machine to the cloud and then back again can cost a lot of money or even lives.
One of the more popular arguments for edge computing is autonomous cars. The idea is that a car going 60 miles an hour needs to be able to identify a threat and stop the car instantly, not wait a few seconds to make a round trip to the cloud. In the industrial world, a machine that is in danger of failing might only have a few seconds or a minute of warning. A sensor might pick up the new vibration signature that signals a failure and then send that to a local gateway for processing. The gateway needs to have the ability to recognize the failure and either alert someone or send back instructions to shut off the machine within milliseconds or seconds.
This also ties into resiliency. Network coverage can falter and the internet can go down. When that happens, cars, heavy industrial machinery, and manufacturing operations still need to work. Edge computing enables them to do that.
4. Bandwidth costs – Some connected sensors, such as cameras or aggregated sensors working in an engine, produce a lot of data. As in multiple gigabytes of data every hour or, in some cases, every minute. In those cases, sending all of that information to the cloud would take a long time and be prohibitively expensive. That’s why local image processing or using local analytics to detect patterns makes so much sense. Instead of sending terabytes of raw image data from a connected streetlight, a local gateway can process that data and then send the relevant information.
5. Autonomy – The problems of latency and resiliency bring us to the final reason the edge will flourish in the internet of things: autonomous decision-making can’t rely on the cloud. For many, the promise of connected plants or offices is that a large number of processes can become automated. If a machine can monitor itself and the process it’s performing, then it can eventually be programmed to take the right action when problems occur. So for example if a sensor detects a pressure buildup, it can release a valve further down the line to relieve that pressure. But once a process relies on a particular level of automation, it’s imperative that it can rely on that level to be enacted in time and all the time.
Most of these are fairly common sense, but what many in the traditional IT world miss is that when you start moving real-world machinery around instead of just bits, it’s no longer good enough to provide 99.99% reliability or millisecond latency. When challenges in the digital world meet the physical world they are magnified; real people’s lives or production processes are on the line, with real-world consequences.
It’s not to say that the cloud won’t pick up more IoT work over time, but right now, it’s a pretty scary proposition for a lot of IoT use cases.
Edge computing efforts are a dime a dozen nowadays, but after mocking the launch of Zededa a few weeks back for its buzzword-heavy press release without any technical details, I talked to the company’s CEO, Said Ouissal. He explained exactly what the startup’s vision is, and it’s a pretty novel way to build applications that could run on any gateway device.
The overarching goal of the startup is to help companies put software on edge devices that can be run securely, with little expertise needed from customers. Those devices might be machines aggregating sensor data or traffic cameras monitoring a street. Ouissal sees each of these devices as a set of infrastructure with common traits, which means Zededa developers can build applications that can span many different devices — and needs.
Zededa’s approach is akin to how developing software for the cloud works today, except that with the cloud the underlying physical hardware is relatively similar. In the IoT world, there are seemingly endless different types of computing devices — from a $ 6 Pi-based computer to a powerful Xeon gateway. There’s also a big question as to whether one needs to build vertical solutions for the industrial world.
A large contingent of industrial IoT entrepreneurs are betting that customers want to buy hardware, software, and cloud services that are vertically integrated so they don’t have to manage complex IT sourcing for something that could become vital to their business. Zededa thinks heterogeneous hardware and existing customer hardware can instead be transformed into something that handles a wide variety of applications. It basically wants to become the Amazon Web Services built on top of millions of connected IoT devices.
To do this, Zededa is creating a software package that combines a hypervisor and a new concept in computing called unikernals. Unikernals are packages of software that contain an application and only the underlying operating system required to run that application. So if the application doesn’t need a file system, that gets jettisoned. The end result is very simple blobs of code (I’d call it a container, but that means something different).
A container, such as those offered by Docker or Kubernetes, provide everything a piece of software needs to run such as the OS, runtime, libraries etc. It’s more flexible than a virtual machine created by a hypervisor, but has more overheard than a unikernal.
The hypervisor is important as well. While newer IoT implementations might view hypervisors as a relic of the server era, there are millions of older connected computers running Windows operating systems that can’t be shoved in a container. For those, you need a hypervisor, says Ouissal. He’s not alone. Last week, The Linux Foundation released an open-source hypervisor designed for the IoT with contributions from Intel and others. It’s called ACRN.
These elements communicate exchange data with the machines they are on and also send information back to a cloud operated by Zededa. The blobs of code and the hypervisor help ensure that the applications that are accessing the edge device stay secure even if the device is tampered with, while the cloud governs the way applications run on the extended hardware devices.
Some of this approach reminds me of what Resin.io is doing with its ability to run containers at the edge, allowing customers to manage applications across their fleets of IoT devices in a way that’s closer to the way they can manage their applications across a cloud infrastructure. But a lot of this also feels very novel, such as the adoption of unikernals that allow software to run in constrained environments.
I’ve spent years trying to define an edge computing stack, and it shifts depending on who I talk to. The one constant, though, is that it’s trying to use existing technology to solve what feels like a very new computing paradigm. And I’m not using the word “paradigm” as jargon. Creating a trusted, secure, auditable, and manageable way to deploy software across millions of nodes is a very different challenge for computing. It really is a new paradigm.
I’m not sure if Zededa’s software is the right path forward, but when it launches later this year, I can’t wait to see how people build on it and with it.
A couple of weeks ago Microsoft said that its Edge browser beta is available for iPad as beta and today the company announced that it is available for everyone both on Android and iPad tablets. Edge browser features for tablets do remain same as the mobile version. The Edge browser comes with features like your favorites including roaming favorites, reading list, a new tab page, reading view, and roaming passwords. It also allows you allows you to open a web page from your phone right on to your PC. The company obviously scaled up the interface of the browser to fit the large-screen, options to change from a light to a dark theme. However, Microsoft hasn’t included the iOS 11 split screen support, meaning that you can’t run any other app while browsing. You can download the Microsoft Edge browser for Android Tablets from the Play Store and Apple iPads from the App Store. Source Fone Arena
Microsoft has announced that its Edge web browser is now available to use on Android tablets as well as Apple’s iPads. “Now, you too, can experience familiar features like your Favorites (including Roaming Favorites), Reading List, New Tab Page, Reading View, and Roaming Passwords in Microsoft Edge across all of your devices,” the company said in a blog post. This comes a few months after the web browser was made available for iOS and Android platforms in preview mode, something which happened in October last year. The preview label was removed in November. Source
In October of last year, Microsoft announced it was bringing its Edge web browser to iOS and Android. The browser is primarily targeted at people already using Edge on Windows 10, as it syncs all data across your devices (much like Chrome and Chrome for Android/iOS). The Android version was released later that month, and Microsoft has continued to update it since then.
Starting today, Edge is now available on Android tablets and iPads.
Microsoft started previewing its Edge browser for iPad earlier this month, and it’s now releasing it for everyone using an iPad or Android tablets today. Microsoft has mainly just scaled up the interface for the larger screen on iPads or Android tablets, and features like “continue on PC” remain, alongside options to change from a light to a dark theme.
The iPad app is rather basic, especially if you’re using an iPad Pro. Microsoft hasn’t included iOS 11 split screen support, so you can’t run the browser alongside another app. Passwords will roam across Edge on Windows 10 to iPad and Android tablets, and the reading list and reading view features are both supported too. You can download Edge for iPad in Apple’s App Store, and the Android…