Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Jaybird SB2 Bluetooth Headset Review

I have been working out a lot to make my fat deposits ready for Christmas – plus I have a back condition that goes from painful to life crippling if I do not give it some training.

But I do find training boring – extremely boring. So I bring my iPad – and use the time to watch news via Slingbox/Slingplayer – or stupid TV series.SB2MB-300

But being caught up in a cord between iPad and my ears is not my favourite position. Especially on Treadmill or rowing machine it is not so safe. So I started out with a Jabra Bluetooth headset where I could attach any type of headphones. The unit looked pretty solid and robber coated – but that lasted only about 2 weeks before it died. Died by sweat ingestion.

Jaybird SB2 Sportsband Bluetooth Headset

So I started researching Bluetooth Headsets for sports. Unfortunately there are not a lot available. But the company Jaybird specializes in Bluetooth headsets for sports. So I decided to try them first. So I ordered the “over the head” SB2 model and the older JB-200. Review of the JB-200 will follow later on.

I ordered the Jaybird SB2 online from Jaybird directly. Everything went smoothly but they are not fast to ship. It took them quite a while to get out of the door. But eventually I got it. Customer service while ordering was not very good. I tried to add some ear pads 10 minutes after putting in the order – but their order system would not let me change the order. And their support was absolutely no help at all. So big minus so far on Speed and Customer service.

Then the headset arrived. You get the headset and a USB charger cable with it. But the Jaybird SB2 uses a very old fashioned very thin “pin” based charger in the headphones. I have not seen any of those since my old V-Tech Bluetooth headset. So if you loose your charger cable – you will not be able to find one one in a high street shop. Why they did not use a Micro or Mini USB I do not know.

If you look at the picture – the headset looks very attractive. Well images are lie. The headset is plastic – with a genuine “China” plastic feel to it. It just feels cheap. It fits okay on the head – but it is heavy.

Pairing with iPhone and iPad was no problem. With iOS 4.2 you can use the headsets full feature set – and they worked quite well. You turn on the headset and it automatically connects to the iPad. No issues.

Jaybird and me of to the Gym

So off the the first gym sessions. And the headset preforms well. A little low on bass but apart from that sound quality is good. After 1 1/2 hours in the gym – I start to feel the hard and sharp edges of the headset band pressing on the top of my skull. But everything works. I was quite happy to have found something that works and is sweat resistant. It stayed on even while running – and felt quite stable.  Call quality was okay on the iPhone – and volume adjusted up and down quite nicely.

After about 2 weeks of happy use – suddenly the headsets volume buttons started playing up. Volume down worked but not volume up. That rendered the headset useless. No way to get volume back up equals not a lot of sound. I guess it might be sweat – so I left it to dry and used another Bluetooth headset for a couple of days. After 4 days the volume-up button started to work again – so I took the Jaybird SB2 to the gym – and hey presto – after about 20 minutes – the headset just died completely. Not a squeak or sound coming from it and it would not turn on.

I left it to dry – for about 2 weeks. And it still looks like it charges – but it still does not turn on. Sweat damage I guess. I could send it back for repair – but since I am in the middle east – just shipping it back will cost about $50,- which is half the price of the headset. Jaybird have a “limited lifetime” sweat guarantee on the SB2. But read the fine print.

Conclusion on Jaybird SB2 and Jaybird store

So can I recommend the SB2 – no – not at all. Can I recommend Jaybird store direct – No not at all. If you want to get a SB2 – fine. But find a retailer locally that stocks them. Make certain that they will exchange the SB2 without hassles if (when) it dies.

So my quest for a Bluetooth sweat resistant headset is still going on. Recommendations anyone?

Coming reviews: Jaybird SB-200 and Plantronics 903+ (plus) “behind the ears/neck” headset.

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Wikileaks founder accused of rape in Stockholm

Julian Assange arrested in-absentia for rape in Stockholm writes Swedish newspaper Afton Bladet. According to the Swedish prosecutors the case is about rape and molestation.

In an e-mail to Afton Bladet Julian Assange denies the accusations.

Julian Assange was in Sweden for some time planning a potential expansion of Wikileaks since Sweden has one of the strongest laws for the protection of sources.

The news in Swedish here: http://www.aftonbladet.se/nyheter/article7651572.ab

A statement from Wikileaks twitter: “We were warned of dirty tricks. Now comes the first” and one quoted as a statement from Julian Assange himself says “the charges are without basis and their issue at this moment is deeply disturbing”

Follow Wikileaks twitter here: http://twitter.com/wikileaks for more updates.

So is this just big boy politics and an attempt to silence Wikileaks. Or are there really two Swedish girls who have been violated by Assange. Only the future will show. But if it just is a case of politics – it is a sure sign that Wikileaks is feared – but a rape case is kind of taken out of a bad spy novel.

Sunday, 1 August 2010

UAE threatens to block all RIM BlackBerry services


All United Arab Emirates BlackBerry users today received this message:

Dear Valued Customer,

The UAE's Telecommunications Regulatory Authority has decided to suspend BlackBerry services from Oct 11, 2010. In accordance with this decision Etisalat will soon announce alternative mobility products and services.

Please visit www.etisalat.ae/blackberry for further information and updates

After UAE telecoms company Etisalat sent out their data snatching “virus” about a year ago – the UAE telecoms authority have been negotiation with RIM to open up for “data sharing” of UAE users BlackBerry data transfers (Messages, Mail, Web usage etc) – it seems like the negotiations has come to an abrupt halt.

To cite the TRA (The UAE Telecoms Regulatory Authority) – “In the current form certain BlackBerryUAE TRA Telecoms Authority blocks BlackBerry Services services allow users to act without any accountability, causing judicial, social and national security concerns in the UAE

In plain terms it means “We want to snoop on your messages and data transfers without a court order – and if we can’t we will just block the services”

I see this of course as a attempt to force RIM/BlackBerry back to the negotiations table. But if it will work is uncertain.

So will the UAE really block all BlackBerry services as of October 11 2010? I don’t think so. Every single statesman and woman from Sheik to Sheika are BlackBerry users. Most of the Government owned investment companies (Sovereign Wealth Funds) – uses BlackBerry.

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Sony Ericsson X10 rooted

Seems like some of the good guys on XDA (jerpelea, Bin4ryDigit and biktor_gj) have rooted the Sony Ericsson X10. Check a picture here. How it was done is not quite clear yet. But I think it has been the hardest root of any Android until now. But it gives the owners of X10 devices the possibility to “upgrade” early to Android 2.x – probably long time before Sony Ericsson can deliver.Sony Ericsson X10 rooted

The X10 is a great phone – with a great screen and lightweight. I guess with Android Froyo it can get some of the market share it deserves. But Sony Ericsson development is kind of slow. Maybe if Sony Ericsson did not spend as much time trying to secure the operating system – the delivery of Android 2.x would speed up. But well - the guys nailed it.

A lot of the critique has been focused around NOT being able to stop some of the factory selected Applications from running. So you will see things like Moxier Mail and Sony Ericsson Timescape “taking” up working memory on the phone – even if you don't want or need them.

So a true root will be a welcome addition to the Sony Ericsson X10.

Join the discussions on XDA Developer here and follow progress while they “cook” the next ROM/Firmware in their bit-kitchens. We are ready to taste any output.

Monday, 21 June 2010

iPhone OS4 or iOS 4 is ready for download


iPhone_4_MultitaskingSeems like iPhone OS4 -iOS4 is ready for the general public. So tune in to iTunes 9.2  and start downloading.

And lets see if Apples servers can take the pressure. My iPhone 3GS is updating as we speak.

I look forward to trying new e-mail and multitasking

Update:Seems like servers are not the fastest in the world. So for 50% downloaded. Some 370mb and 185 done. But I’m in the Middle East…

Friday, 28 May 2010

N900 sms Nokia on upgrade

Nokia N900 UK advert from Financial Times ouch – lots of heated discussion in the world of N900 users. First Nokia can’t really decide who the phone/mobile computer is aimed at – and then after letting users wait for 5 months for a crucial update called PR1.2 – Nokia finally releases PR1.2 with some of the functions that are needed to make the N900 a killer device.

And what happens? Well when a user finishes upgrading to PR1.2 – the N900 sends an SMS– from the end users handset to Nokia.

Nokia does show in the Terms and Conditions that they will do that – but hey – Nokia – stop fishing money of out MY wallet and sending details via SMS  - that I HAVE TO PAY FOR - to Finland. And what are they putting into that SMS?

It makes me feel a bit – jolted – and my trust in Nokia is gone.

But this is just a case of Nokia miscommunication – once again.

Not to mention that N900 is already “out” and won’t get any more major updates. No wonder 2nd hand prices on N900 are so low – lower than N97…

More here: http://talk.maemo.org/showthread.php?t=53565

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Nokia N900 Mini Review part 2

I have now been using the Nokia N900 for about a . The device is great but still have quite a lot of issues that needs to be solved before it can be a mainstream product.week and a bit

So here are a few more comments

Battery life: Well in default setting battery life is not the best in the world. Since it is dependent on usage quoting figures are not that relevant. But enough to say that you hardly get a work day from the battery. If you optimize a bit – you can get up to a work day. Wi-Fi power and Bluetooth are heavy drainers – so keep Bluetooth off and set Wi-Fi transmit power to 10mw. Default is 100mw. It will impact wireless range but better than running out of juice.


Mail For Exchange: That is the biggest disappointment. It semi works – but only if you run Exchange 2007 with specific service packs. You cannot really call it “support” for exchange. It is very limited support – and it seems like it was not born from the codebase on the S60 MfE. This rules out out as a business phone for many. No remote wipe/key. Syncs all folders you have. If you run in scheduled mode (like every 15. min.) it seems like if MfE looses the data connection – then MfE will not connect again unless you do a full manual sync. Very annoying. You can’t move mails to another folder.

Message Pop Up: When a new message pops up – why can’t you delete the message? Button is greyed out.

Message Notifications: Unfortunately the message notification sound when you are on a call is the same as “Call Waiting” – so you get bugged down checking the phone again and again – only to find out it is a message notification.

Ovi Maps – enough said – just lousy. Give us V3

Camera: Camera takes great pictures in the right conditions. But give it a bit of light that hits the metallic frame around the lens – resulting in distorted and blue tinted pictures that are less than good looking.

Web Browser - Web Gestures: Does mostly only work if you use the stylus. Does not work very well unless you have a pointy finger or long nails. Most of the time the browser is fast. But sometimes it gets kind of stuck and takes forever to load pages. It has been reported some flash applications can stay running even if you close the browser – and thereby eat the battery without you noticing it.

Touch: In general nowhere near iPhone. To many mistakes resulting from touch. Browser is terrible with touch – even with stylus – and have a habit of confusing scrolling with tapping on links every time.

Screen : For indoor use it is great. But not as clear outdoors as the iPhone. Resolution is good. Screen cover is really bad and needs a screen protector. My phone is already so scratched it needs a new “glass”

Bluetooth: Hmm not really ready for prime times. Crashes my Nokia BH-905 headset so it needs a complete reset. Limited support for using the Phone as DUN device (sharing Internet access with your computer)

MMS: Nope not available (yet) – I don’t care – since I do not use MMS – but for some people it is important.

Skype: Works quite well – but not as well as Skype on the iPhone. Lots of fall-outs in speech in my testing. But great Skype can stay loaded in the background.

The worst thing with the N900 is the constant “fight” with Linux Geeks who sees the phone as the 2nd coming. They can make up all kinds of excuses to why the phone (yes phone) is not a phone, why the applications are not up to scratch, If a user asks the wrong question about how to get things to work or why they do not work in another way – they are like vultures attacking dead pray.

The product is an end user product. But the biggest threat to success is the availability of high quality software and the Linux community attitude to “You are stupid if you don’t know how to operate this device”. That is what is killing Linux on the Desktop and it can kill the N900 just as well. So guys – help people. Always think that your mother or grandmother should be able to use the device. Think of your fellow users as people who are not stupid – but people who you can and should help understand all the great things about a Linux based phone. Help fellow developers develop with end users in mind. Not just for users who create arbitrary RegEx statements while playing Doom and know what Bash and BusyBox is.

If nothing is done the N900 will end up being another niche device where interest will dwindle within a short period of time.

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Rain has cleared the air in dubai

Seems like the air smells fresh and clean. Testpost via pixelpipe on N900

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Nokia N900 mini review


As you might have noticed – I don’t care a lot about things like “processor speed” or other specs on mobile phones. It is a bit like comparing – yes you know what.

What I do care about usability – can it do what I need and want?

So very high on my needs list for running my businesses and taking care of my personal life are:

1. Microsoft Exchange Support
2. SIP Phone Support
3. VPN Support (PPTP and/or more)
4. Good and fast web browsing. Don't care about Flash at all.
5. Good Voice quality for Phone and SIP calls.
6. High resolution screen – in an ok size so I don't have to fiddle to much.
7. Capacitive Touch
8. Potential for real navigation with GPS when you are in a tight spot
9. Good quality media player that can eat a lot of formats without conversion.

So I got the “Mobile Computer with Phone support” the N900 to see if that fits my needs. The N900 is a descendant to the Nokia Internet Tablets like the N800 and N810. It is based on a Debian Linux with a Nokia GUI on top – but have more or less same specs and the N97 running Symbian. It is also comparable to the latest Android based phones.

You might have noticed I called the N900 for a “Mobile Computer with Phone support” – and that is ONLY because a lot of the N900 fan-boys tries to say “Phone Support is not super yet – but please do not look the N900 as a phone” to cover Phone criticism. I think that is stupid to be honest. It is a device from Nokia with a SIM card – so you should expect a great Phone integration. So N900 fan-boys - stop crying “foul”every time someone says something bad about the Phone Interface. Suck it up -  and put pressure on Nokia to fix it.

So in general – the N900 falls short in a few of my requirements. It does have SIP – but does NOT have VPN. VPN should be SO easy to implement on a Debian platform that I don’t understand why it is not there.

Another annoyance is the N900 has resistive touch screen. That is really not very good. It is more luck than effort that you can use it for on screen navigation. Compared to iPhone it is really bad. Not as bad as the N97 but very close. Tapping on the screen (like double tap in web browser to “zoom in” and double-tap again to zoom out”) – again – is more luck than anything that it zooms. Often I need to try 3-4 times before it zooms. Never had that kind of an issue on the iPhone.

Exchange Support is “ok” but not more than okay. It is Nokia’s own “Mail for Exchange” application that manages the connection – and it seems to work a bit different on the N900 than it does on the N97/E90/E71. On the “other” versions of MfE – your Inbox get synchronised. But on the N900 – ALL your folders get synchronised. For me that meant the first sync I tried – did not even finish in 24 hours. I have maybe 70-90 mails pr day – and keep my inbox quite nice and clean – but organise all other mails in folders and subfolders.  So I’m used to all other Exchange mobile implementations – to take all mail from Inbox and keep that in Sync. But my N900 wanted my entire 9GBs of mails from all folders. What a waste – I don’t need all my old mail in my pocket. I need only my Inbox and maybe selected folders. But there is NO way to disable folders from Sync.

The huge amount of e-mail MfE tries to sync – also seems to mean that my N900 often “forgets” to sync. “Last sync failed – Exchange Server Not Responding” it screams. But with a mobile device I need to be sure that my mails arrive on time when I’m out – without having to check Sync status all the time. If I set it for every 15 min – I want my mail every 15. min – not after 3 hours… I do not have those issues with my iPhone – so why should I accept them with the N900?

Navigation – well the N900 is delivered with a crippled version of Ovi Maps. I love Ovi Maps 3.0 – but the version in the N900 is a weird mix of Ovi Maps 3 and some older versions. Seems like a Quick and dirty “hack” just to have a map application on the N900.  You do get the 3D buildings as in V3 – and you can use it for navigation – but you don't get a Navigation screen – only the map. No turn by turn instructions – and biggest issue – no sync of your online Ovi Landmarks. I have a lot of landmarks in my Ovi Maps Online Application but can’t access them on this version.

Web browser is okay – but not a speed daemon – it works okay and display pages quite well. But not a fluid experience like on the iPhone.

Media Player seems to work fine and can play mpeg 4 video with good results on the screen – it fulfil my needs anyway.

Now I will take a break and come back with more later. :-)

Thursday, 3 December 2009

Nokia BH-905 Short Review


I have been looking for a Bluetooth and wired noise cancelling headset for a long time. One you can use on flights and for the computer – and for any Bluetooth phone. When Nokia announced the BH-905 I knew i wanted to try them and they seemed like the could handle my requirements.Nokia-BH-905-noise-cancelling-headset

The BH-905 is a very capable package. I have used it now for about 3 months and are quite happy with it – but they are not perfect. So here are my complaints you need to be aware of.

1. Noise cancelling

a. BH-905 seems to convert most noise into a low level high pitch hiss. For normal use it is okay – but not nearly as good as my Sony MDR-NC500Ds. One flights the noise is quite annoying

b. Nokia BH-905 has a BIG problem with low pitch noise like engine noise (diesel engines) – they get “transformed” into very very low pitch humming – that is more annoying that the noise itself.

c. I took the BH-905 to Formula 1 in Abu Dhabi – but that was a big mistake. The sound from F1 cars made the BH-905 go into overdrive so they popped and clicked so badly you could not even wear them any longer. Had to resort to my good old fashioned “stuff something in your ears..” to keep noise level down.

2. Connectivity

a. It is not easy to maintain connection to multiple devices via Bluetooth – since most computers and phones support both Stereo and Headset profiles – changing source device is a pain in the b*t. 

b. Computers have a hard time pushing audio in Stereo mode to the headset – and frequently changes to headset mode. Headset mode has lousy audio quality for music and video. This might not be Nokia’s problem – but it seems like a generic Bluetooth profile handling problem.

c. The Nokia BH-905 supports cable connections. But why does it not support a standard PC Mic In? So you could use the BH-905 as a headset for a PC via Wired connection? That is just stupid. Connecting to a PC gives you and Audio Out only so fine for music and video – but if the VoIP phone rings – you cant answer. Please Nokia – there are room for improvement here.

So in general – as I said the device is on the right track – but still to young to be a major player in the noise cancelling headset sector. For that to happen the noise cancelling needs to get a lot better and the bugs need to get sorted out. One could hope a later firmware could solve it – but for now I need to bring my Sony if I need real noise cancelling.

On the positive side it works with my iPhone 3GS and my Nokia N900. Not perfect – but it works.

Sunday, 7 December 2008

Stein Bagger arrested in LA

The Danish CEO of IT Factory, who committed fraud for so far US$170 ml. has been arrested in Los Angeles, USA early Saturday.

According to the Danish Police, Stein Bagger turned himself in to the LA Police.

Stein Bagger was threatened to commit crime

Stein Bagger sent information to his family claiming he had been forced to commit the crimes over the past four years, since someone was threatening his family.

"We not convinced about Stein Bagger should have been threatened to commit the crimes” says Gert Have from Danish Police to newspaper Politikken.

So who threatened Stein Bagger? Is it true? Still material for a book, TV series, Computer Game and much more. Who will buy the rights?

Friday, 5 December 2008

Stein Bagger update 3


Stain Bagger fraud US$205 million
Stein Baggers fraud in IT Factory increases to an estimated US$205 million. And more might pop up say the Lawyer who is handling the assets after IT Factory.

Stein Baggers home searched by police
The home of Stein Bagger and his wife was searched by police yesterday says Danish Newspaper Ekstra Bladet. Stein Baggers “friend” Allan Vestergaards home was searched as well. We will post a follow-up on the relationship between Allan Vestergaard and Stein Bagger later on. Allan seems to be the reason the scam fell through and is a central piece to the whole story.

Stein Bagger – call your lawyer
Per Justesen, the appointed defence lawyer asks Stein Bagger to call him. Since charges have been brought towards Stein Bagger, the defence lawyer would like Stein Bagger to contact him. But dear Stein Bagger – we know you are reading this – so why don’t you send your account of the details to us, and we will post your side of the story. (email address is listed on top of the page)

Stein Bagger in Panama?
According to Danish Newspapers Stein Bagger might be in Panama. Travel records suggest it. But now the arrest warrant is out, travel will be a lot harder. We guess Stein Bagger has backup travel papers, but maybe they are with a little different looking Stein Bagger. So maybe Stein Bagger is staying below the radar until he has grown some facial hair and if he can – some more “top” hair. J

Thursday, 4 December 2008

Stein Bagger accused of $170 ml fraud


Danish Police have officially indicted Stein Bagger for fraud for about US$170 million. The US$170 million is based on advanced leasing scam, apparently run by Mr. Bagger and multiple international companies. Mr. Stein Bagger was CEO of Danish IT Cometh IT Factory.

This now means the Police can put out an International arrest warrant. To top the charges the Danish Tax department was investigating a sales tax fraud case him for about US$3.4 million. The tax fraud alone can get Mr. Bagger a jail sentence of about 8 years alone.

IBM is among the latest to disclose they have been swindled for US$25 million by IT Factory. IT Factory owes IBM for about US$9 million in software licenses and US$16 million in “Other products”

Hewlett Packard has disclosed outstanding dept from IT Factory to the region of US$5.4 million.

The future does not look so bright for Mr. Bagger.

The other Investors behind IT Factory are in a state of disbelief, since their holding company (JMI Invest) and other companies JMI have invested in, are now hit by the banks closing outstanding dept for every associated company.

JMI Invest have borrowed money against the apparently valuable shares of IT Factory. Now that the shares of IT Factory does not have any value, the banks are looking to get coverage for as much as possible, as quickly as possible to minimize the total loss in IT Factory.

It is a shame that hits some of the other investments JMI Invest have.

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Stein Bagger updates


The mystery about Stein Bagger is still unfolding.

Here is a list of recent updates

  • The defrauded amount can be up to US$170 million and not US$100 million as reported earlier.
  • Danske Bank (Big Danish Bank) admits to having leasing agreements with “IT Factory” for US$60ml, most of which are made in 2008. The underlying assets seem not to exist.
  • Nordea Bank has leasing agreements worth US$3.5 ml.
  • Danish Hells Angels member Brian Sandberg has been employed by IT Factory and Stein Bagger for the last 12 months as “Security Consultant” guarding Stein Bagger and IT Factory. Brian Sandberg spoke to Stein Bagger just before he left to Dubai on Nov. 26th.
  • Stein Bagger owned 50% of IT Factory through an offshore holding company called Agios United. Everyone thought Aigos United was a 100% Stein Bagger Company, until this week where shareholders in IT Factory learned that Allan Vestergaard was a partner in the Agios United holding company
  • Allan Vestergaard was attacked last week by unknown persons. It seems to have some relation to the case. Allan Vestergaard then called the Chairman of the board of IT Factory and that started the ball rolling. The Chairman did not know Allan Vestergaard was a partner, and hurried to Denmark and hired a bodyguard.
  • The leasing fraud was based on Company X sending IT Factory an invoice for computer products for fx. US$10 ml. Then IT Factory went to a bank and got it financed. Then the bank paid company X. Thereafter IT Factory invoiced Company X for US$3 ml for “Software Licenses”, which company X then paid. That left enough cash in IT Factory to pay the outstanding leasing obligations and showed “software revenue”
  • Stein Bagger claimed that he had a Phd and an MBA. The MBA was according to Edinburgh Business School never completed. The Phd seems to be fake as well. It was “issued” from “SFTU” which according to Stein Bagger was “San Francisco Technical University” a University no one can find...

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Scandinavian CEO elopes after US$100 million fraud in IT company

Case ties in with former Gizmondo CEO and convicted criminal Carl Freer & Mikael P. Ljungman and creates a big black eye to Ernst & Young who 1 week before applauded the CEOs company as best of the best..

Danish IT Company “IT Factory” has been hailed as the “Success of Successes” companies in the Danish IT sector. Lead by charismatic CEO of Norwegian descent, Stein Bagger, the company had an estimated net worth of US$ 1.5 billion – until this Friday. Now it is bankrupt.

IT Factory CEO elopes from Dubai
On a pleasure trip to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates with his wife, IT Factory CEO Stein Bagger suddenly disappeared this Thursday and became impossible to reach. His wife since 2003 started a search together with the Danish Consulate in the UAE, only to discover that the husband left from Abu Dhabi airport at 03.00 am the night to Friday.

Then things started to unfold very quickly. First it turns out that the missing CEO Stein Bagger rented a little office, close to the main office of IT Factory. From there it seems he had been running his “fraudulent” part of the business, issuing purchase orders with forged signatures to IT Factory, managed an advanced leasing scam, forging the Chairman of the Boards signatures and much more.

In a statement to the Danish Press, the Chairman of IT Factory claims the total embezzlement is in the region of US$ 100 million, and had taken place over several years.

The link to criminal Carl Freer
The Danish version of IDG Computerworld had 3 weeks before started to dig into the true story behind the apparent success of IT Factory. They dug out that some of the clients and resellers listed on IT Factory’s homepage was not all what they seemed to be.

Some clients denied ever buying software from IT Factory. Other dealers said they did not know why they was listed as dealers on the website. Others had asked to be removed a long time ago as references.

And suddenly – two of the very big reference names strike the Computerworld Denmark guys as strange. Media Power Inc and eCommerce LLC. Both companies controlled by Mikael P. Ljungman and founded by Carl Freer. (website www.themediapowergroup.com)

Confronted with the dud references, CEO Stein Bagger said “We do not check the background of the people behind eCommerce LLC and Media Power Inc. As long as the behave nice we will keep them on as dealers”

And they Black Eye go to... (drum roll) Ernst and Young
Ernst & Young evaluated IT Factory and did not find anything but “greatness” – they looked through the 2007 accounts and could not find any cause to doubt the figures. They had hour long interviews with the now missing CEO without spotting any wrong doing. And even after IT Blogger Dorthe Toft had pointed out some suspect issues in the Danish press about IT Factory, Ernst and Young “double checked” again 2 weeks ago – and that did not lead to any changes of heart about giving IT Factory the Danish version of the price: “Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year®”

Black Eye runners up are Danish Computerworld who gave IT Factory 2 consecutive prices as “Best of IT” – before they started digging up the nasty stuff. But Computerworld was also part of showing the real "IT Factory" so they should be excused a bit for their part of scam boosting.

3rd Black Eye runner up is the IT Factory audit company … “KPMG Denmark” who have not been able to find anything wrong with companies accounts the last few years.

The recap
So the CEO is missing. IT Factory is missing US$100 million and is bankrupt, with 115 jobs lost. Newspapers in Denmark are full of stories about the missing guy and the fraud. Now the “former” CEO, who is a former body builder, is tied to Carl Freer and whispers from Danish police even mention Hells Angels relations. So was this planned? Was it all just a gigantic fraud from the beginning or was it a CEO trying to boost his ego by committing fraud. Only the future will tell – if he ever gets found.

In any case – this is material for a book and a Hollywood movie deal. Real life often surpasses what fiction writers can dream up. Maybe this will become a feature on CSI Miami – all we need now is a murder and the story is worth a lot of dollars. May I suggest that the remains after IT Factory gets a revenue share deal?


about the bankruptcy and CEO (in Danish)

IT Factory bankrupt and CEO is on the run
Danish Computerworld articles about IT Factory’s collapse

About Carl Freer

2nd Arrest Made in Ferrari Case
Gizmondo's Spectacular Crack-up