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#822: LaCie Purchased By Seagate, Apple Chargers, What Does 4G Mean?


Hello readers!

This week has seen a return to much more seasonable (and reasonable) June weather—60s and 70s with a mix of sun and rain. It seems almost chilly after the couple weeks of close to record highs we were having. I really don’t like the heat, so I’m all for it. Hot weather makes me cranky and forgetful!

You’ll be hearing from me a lot more as I will be taking a more active role in Tech Tails. I’m looking forward to keeping Tech Tails going for a long time and hopefully trying out some new things. Speaking of new things, WWDC is coming up next week, and we are all excited to see what new things roll out of Cupertino. Mountain Lion? iOS 6? Apple doesn’t tell us anything, so we will find out when you do.

We’ll be following all the new developments, so be sure to check out the latest on Barkings, the Small Dog blog.

Thanks for reading,


  LaCie Purchased By Seagate  

The pool of mass storage vendors and firms declined by one last week. Seagate announced that they have purchased LaCie for $186 million. In 2006, Seagate purchased drive manufacturer Maxtor. (Maxtor had purchased Quantum Corporation in 2000.)

The latest acquisition by Seagate seems to indicate that they want to offer a wider range of storage options. LaCie, one of the first manufacturers to adopt the Thunderbolt port, has long been a company supporting the Mac community.

Thoughts? How many of you either own a Seagate drive or LaCie external hard drive?

  Just Another Expensive Charger?  
  Apple AC adapter power

Why pay $30 for an Apple iPhone charger? This is a question I’ve asked myself a few times, but in the end, I still dropped the cash for the Apple-branded charger for my iPhone. Considering it’s something that I know will last me a while, and that the Apple name means quality, I don’t have much of an issue paying this much for something that seems to be so simple, and I could get for much cheaper elsewhere.

While I feel that this is mostly a good justification, techie blogger Ken Shirriff has come up with a much better reason. Recently, he completely tore apart the tiny charger and closely analyzed its components, resulting in quite the unexpected. Apple’s charger is surprisingly more technologically complex than most other third-party chargers.

He describes each electrical component, in detail, explaining how these components allow Apple’s charger to be efficient and intelligent. One major difference between Apple’s charger and the generic third party charger is Apple’s attention to the reduction EMI interference. This quality allows your iPhone to operate while plugged in exactly the same way as it would while not plugged in. Whereas, while plugged into a third party charger, the iPhone may exhibit touchscreen interference.

Safety is also a factor in Apple’s charger, with a complex circuit that shuts down the charger if it rises above a safe temperature or voltage. Shirriff states that Apple goes “beyond regulation” with with some of the electrical precautions that were taken.

Needless to say, the next time I need to buy an iPhone charger, I will not be thinking twice about which manufacturer I’m buying it from.

Give Ken Shirriff’s very detailed/complex article a read here.
These advanced little pieces of technology may be purchased in-store or on our website!

  What Does 4G Mean?  

One question that we hear often is, “What exactly does 4G mean?” Well, answering that doesn’t require a big technical background. The “G” in 4G stands for “generation.” Every time a wireless carrier upgrades the equipment on their towers, they refer to it as the next generation of their network. In basic terms, every time they make their internet faster, they give it a new name to add value for their customers.

This does not mean that all 4G networks are the same. If Verizon’s 3G was as fast as T-mobile’s 2G, then T-mobile’s 4G will be a lot faster than Verizon’s. You will also see terms such as LTE or HSPA+. These are terms for the actual technology—the current generation of the network. LTE stands for “long term expansion.”

This is currently the fastest technology on the market, and the carriers use it because it can easily be upgraded for years to come. Knowing and recognizing these terms can help you compare different carriers and how fast their networks actually are, not just what “G” stands for.

  EVENTS: June eWaste Recycling  

June is here, and your overstuffed garage and basements will thank you when you decide to recycle your old electronics at one of our two eWaste Recycling Events.

If you’re in or around the Manchester, NH area, come out to the Mall of NH on Saturday, June 16 from 9-3pm. Check out our event page on Facebook here.

If you’re in or around the Rutland, VT area (new location this year!), come out to Rutland High School on Saturday, June 30 from 9-3pm. Check out our event page on Facebook here.

More details are available on our website as well:

  SPECIAL: MacBook (used) + Extended Warranty + Free Sleeve  

TT: MacBook (used) + extended warranty + free sleeve | Save $35


Get a used MacBook with a 3 year warranty and you’ll save $20. Plus, we’ll throw in a free Brenthaven sleeve bringing the total savings to $35. More protection equals more savings!


  SPECIAL: Maxx Digital Dock/Clock Radio with Sony Headphones  

TT: Maxx Digital Dock/Clock Radio + Sony Headphones | Save $20!


It’s a clock! It’s a dock! It’s Maxx Digital and it’s ready to ROCK! Also comes with a pair of Sony headphones. Quantities are limited, so get this special and save $20 while it lasts.