Weekend Roundup: Android booms from Samsung Galaxy S4 and tablet line-up, Top 10 tips for cloud computing, Cameras on Kaspersky

Marketing the key as Samsung Galaxy S4 flies out the blocks

Heralding winners and losers in the tech industry on sales figures alone may bypass more important factors and create a rather crude way of assessing the market, but when it comes to consumer gadgetry, a good old fashioned sales war makes for an interesting spectacle. This week, we’ve had reports on the state of play in both the smartphone and tablet arenas, and the new statistics make particularly good reading for Android, and its main vehicle, Samsung.

According to data from uSwitch, Samsung’s Jelly Bean-running Galaxy S4 flew out of the blocks to become the third most popular smartphone in the UK for April, despite being on sale for just four days of the month. It may be fair to say a handset with the fanfare of the Galaxy S4 is always likely to command such success, but cultivating the fanfare itself deserves credit, and uSwitch mobile expert Ernest Doku was full of praise for another well-executed marketing campaign from Samsung.

“A carefully orchestrated sequence of reveals and events since its initial March unveiling has seen the S4 remain on the lips of critics and eager consumers alike," said Doku. “The hype train had barely left the station and popularity in terms of searches and pre-orders were through the roof, resulting in performance usually the preserve of an Apple device.”

More good news for Android; different story for Windows

In terms of the tablet scene, Google would have been grinning again as its Android OS topped the market share rankings in global tablet shipments for the first quarter of 2013. Figures supplied by IDC showed that 27.8 million Android tablets have already been sold this year, which represents a huge 247.5 per cent year-over-year growth for the software in this format.

But though Apple would not have enjoyed seeing iOS slip behind Android’s 56.5 per cent market share, the Cupertino firm still managed to ship 19.5 million tablets in Q1 to exceed forecasts of 18.7 million. IDC was keen to highlight a “sustained demand for the iPad mini” – again pointing to the growth of the 7in(ish) tablet segment. So surely struggling Windows, which only featured on 3.7 per cent of the tablets shipped so far this year, needs to be available on these popular scaled down models – perhaps even a new 7in Surface? Not necessarily the key, says IDC.

"Recent rumours have circulated about the possibility of smaller screen Windows RT and Windows 8 tablets hitting the market. However, the notion that this will be the saving grace is flawed,” said Ryan Reith, Program Manager for IDC's Mobility Tracker project. “Clearly the market is moving toward smart 7-8 inch devices, but Microsoft's larger challenges centre around consumer messaging and lower cost competition.” In tablets, like so many other areas of the market, it seems Microsoft still has a lot to learn from its illustrious counterparts, Google and Apple.

Cloud computing top 10: The key benefits and how to use it securely

Heading into more business-oriented matters, and this week saw us publish a comprehensive guide to using the cloud, and crucially, how to do it without running undue security risks.

Guest blogger Dave Anderson is well placed to talk on the subject. Anderson is the Director of Strategy at Voltage Security, and ITProPortal witnessed some of his enthusiasm and knowledge of cloud computing first hand during an interview at Infosecurity Europe last week. Then, Anderson emphasised the philosophy of data-centric protection, arguing that traditional perimeter defences simply don’t cut it when it comes to using the cloud securely.

This features as part of his top 10 cloud tips; five covering the key benefits of deployment, and five suggesting methods of enhancing cloud security. Also included in the run down is insight on compliance, meeting data residency requirements, cost efficiencies, ramping up performance, and introducing systems like stateless tokenisation. So if you’re still unsure on whether or not your organisation should be using the cloud more, make sure you follow the link and check out the full guide.

We get the cameras on Kaspersky

A final highlight from this week comes via our video interview with one of the biggest players in the IT security game; Kaspersky Lab.

We sat down with General Manager, Malcolm Tuck and Senior Security Researcher, David Emm who talked us through the biggest challenges facing the industry right now. Perhaps the most pertinent issues raised in the discussion centred on mobile security, with both everyday users and company employees struggling to adapt to a mentality of their phone being a vulnerable attack target, just like a PC.

“As an employee, you are presented with a desktop or a laptop you know it is a computer device so you realise there is a security dimension, but with a mobile device you don't,” said Emm. “It's pedigree is ‘phone’… you don't necessarily have that feel for the fact that it is a computer and that there is a potential threat there from a security point of view, and so there is a different psychology at play.” Read on via the link above for the full video and transcript.