Now we are a billion!
The year 2009 is off to a great start for anyone who enjoys the internet. Around the turn of the year, the magical billion mark was passed. Nowadays, there are thus over a billion internet users, at least if we are to believe the survey company Comscore World Metrix.
The calculation is based on people over 15 years of age who have access to the internet at home or at work. There are thus even more if you count internet cafes and libraries.
China, the US and Japan have the most internet users.
The pirates on trial
On February 16, the most talked about trial of the year began. The defendants were the men behind the file-sharing network The Pirate Bay. They were accused of copyright infringement because, among other things, The Pirate Bay is used to distribute music and movies without permission.
The trial lasted just over two weeks, and on April 17 the verdict was handed down. The four defendants were sentenced to one year in prison each and a total of SEK 30 million in damages. However, the verdict has been appealed.
Surf faster with the new Internet Explorer
The battle between the browsers has continued during the year. Microsoft, which last year fell behind, launched its new Internet Explorer browser in March. New search tools such as accelerators as well as increased security were among the news.
The main opponents Firefox and Safari came with new versions during June, while Google Chrome 3 and Norwegian Opera 10 were launched in September.
Ipred should stop file sharing
After much debate, the so-called Ipred law entered into force on 1 April. The Ipred law, which is based on a directive from the EU, is primarily intended to stop the piracy of films and music.
The law means that internet operators can be forced to hand over information about individual users’ so-called IP numbers. In practice, this means that it is possible to see who has pirated, and that he or she can be brought to justice.
Final scam about surfing speed
Mobile broadband is getting faster and faster. Last spring, the mobile operator 3 started marketing its new subscription with the speed “21 megabits per second”.
But tests in PC for All, among others, showed that the real speed was significantly slower, and in May 3 backed away from its misleading marketing.
Together with the other operators and the Swedish Consumer Agency, they agreed on new rules for marketing. Nowadays, the speed is given as a more realistic range.
The first Android has landed
Apple’s successful iPhone received competition with the launch of the so-called Android phones. The HTC Magic was first released in June, but since then it has had successors from, among others, Samsung and LG.
Similar to the iPhone, the Android mobiles have a touch screen, which means that navigation takes place with the fingers. But while the iPhone is a locked system, Android is open to all manufacturers.
Google is behind Android, and the phone has simple connections to, for example, the email service Gmail and Google Calendar.
Pirate Bay purchases end in chaos
On the last of June, the news hits like a bomb. The company Global Gaming Factory declares that they want to buy The Pirate Bay for 60 million. The plan is to transform The Pirate Bay from a pirate network into a completely legal service for movies and music.
Quite soon, a number of questions are raised about the deal. The chairman of the board of Global Gaming Factory resigns, the company is kicked out of Aktietorget and later filed for bankruptcy. And no deal is lost.
Free movie in Swedish Voddler
The Swedish music service Spotify has become a success, and now Voddler hopes to do the same for film. By installing a special program on the computer, it is possible to watch movies over the Internet.
In other words, the films are not downloaded at home but streamed out. Similar to Spotify, Voddler is free for those who accept advertising, while those who pay for a premium subscription avoid the ads.
Voddler was launched in a test version, and for now only special invitees can use the service.
Find your friends in the teddy bear
Positioning is predicted to be a future giant thanks to the new smart mobile phones, and in August Google launched its new service Lattitude.
With the help of an ordinary mobile phone, it is possible to find one’s position and share it with others. In other words, those who connect it can see where their friends are at any time. The prerequisite is, of course, that they have joined the service and not turned it off.
Spotify is not only available on the computer
In September, the well-known music service Spotify arrived in a long-awaited version for iPhone and Android mobile phones. It is now possible to also listen to music on the go.
However, the mobile versions only work for those who pay for the premium service. Those who have chosen the advertising-funded free subscription may continue to use the computer.
Thumbs up for Windows 7
After the flop with Windows Vista, Microsoft got a long-awaited revenge. At the end of October, Windows 7 was released, and the reviews were consistently positive.
Windows 7 is above all faster and smoother than Windows Vista. It also includes a number of new features, such as an updated taskbar that makes it easier to open programs. Other news is that it is easier to create a home network and that the system can handle touch screens.
EU compromise saves file sharers
Whoever engages in illegal file sharing may not be suspended without legal review. This is the result of an agreement between the EU Parliament and the Council of Ministers. The background is an infected battle over the EU’s so-called Telecom package. Parliament did not want to approve it as long as it was not clear that basic human rights must also apply on the Internet.
Hot batteries are being recalled
The fact that more and more people are using laptops can create problems. During December, both Packard Bell and Fujitsu were forced to recall batteries for some of their notebook computers. The reason is that they get so hot that they risk causing a fire.
Just a few days earlier, the State’s Forensic Technology Laboratory determined that a house fire in Staffanstorp was probably caused by an overheated battery. The computer had been lying on a sofa – and a mother and her four children died when the hot battery caused the cushions to catch fire.