MediaFile

Tech wrap: Sony CEO says sorry to gamers

May 6, 2011

Sony CEO Howard Stringer broke his silence on the biggest Internet security break-in ever, apologizing to users of the PlayStation Network and other online services. Stringer did not specify when services would resume.

One analyst said security concerns could weigh on sales of Sony’s gadgets and hurt growth prospects for its network services. “The network business itself still only makes a small direct contribution to earnings, but we see a potential drop in hardware sales as a concern,” analyst Kota Ezawa at Citigroup Global Markets Japan, wrote in a note ahead of the comments from Stringer.

But Peter Walshe at brands research agency Millward Brown said the main Sony brand should bounce back, although PlayStation specifically might suffer. “People may shout: ‘I’m never going to buy Sony again,’ but in our experience that doesn’t tend to happen.”

The attack on Sony, as well as a massive outage at Amazon.com’s cloud computing center, have caused some businesses to put the brakes on plans to move their operations into the cloud, writes Jim Finkle. Experts in digital security say that investors, businesses and consumers have put too much faith in the cloud, Finkle adds.

Intel’s latest manufacturing breakthrough sends a clear warning to rival ARM Holdings not to get too complacent with its overwhelming lead in the red-hot mobile arena, writes Noel Randewich. Intel’s new “Tri-Gate” technology flips flat chip design on its side — thereby making it “3D” — an approach considered but not yet implemented by Intel rivals like Samsung, GlobalFoundries, and Taiwan’s TSMC. However, ARM’s chips are the industry standard for Apple’s mobile gadgets and other devices running Google’s Android operating system, a trend Intel will find increasingly difficult to reverse as time goes on, Randewich adds.

The Wall Street Journal’s “SafeHouse”, its version of WikiLeaks, was criticized by security researchers who say the Journal has yet to learn a basic rule of digital whistleblowing: leaking sites aren’t meant to leak, writes Forbes’s Andy Greenberg. Within hours of launch of Safehouse on Thursday, the security community had pointed to flaws in the site’s protections for anonymous leakers and its policy for source protections that could give away the identities of would-be whistleblowers, adds Greenberg. A Journal spokesperson responded in a statement that SafeHouse is working to fix one of the flaws over the weekend, and had been updated to use only more secure types of encryption.

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