Archive for October, 2013

By October 29, 2013 Read More →

Is the Google Watch ready to go?

google watch concept-renderThere is a report from the Wall Street Journal today that hints we may see the next phase of the wearable tech rolling out very soon. Google is already nearing mass production on a new Google Now smart-watch. In fact, if the timeline they are suggesting is as accurate as their rumour, then we might see a Google Now connected smart-watch revealed in the first quarter of 2014.

According to the WSJ report, Google is working hard to address the two primary concerns/complaints with a wearable smart-watch, usefulness and battery life. Google is planning to address these issues head on by imbuing their smart-watch with far greater functionality and a deeper integration with Google Now services. Additionally, they have focused a great deal of development on increasing power efficiency for the device so that it can last several days on a charge.

Here’s a quote with more details:

The new device, which will run on Android, will be integrated with Google Now, the company’s intelligent personal assistant that can answer questions, make recommendations and predict what information users need based on what they are doing, a person familiar with the situation said. Google has also been working to reduce power consumption on the smartwatch so it won’t require frequent battery charges, the person said.The smartwatch will be able to communicate with other devices such as a smartphone, and draw information such as travel schedules from a user’s email through Google Now, the person said. The device could be ready for mass production within months, the person said.

Whether Google’s smart-watch can fire on all cylinders and deliver a compelling experience will have to be judged once it really does come to market. Regardless, it certainly looks like the ball is rolling on the evolution of wearable computing devices, despite not taking off the way smartphones and tablets have.

Posted in: Gadgets, News, Phones
Tags: ,
By October 29, 2013 Read More →

Tots and Tablets

baby-ipadKids are always interested in the latest and greatest of everything. From toys to tablets, kids are drawn to all things new and exciting. For many parents, the prospect of having their children repeatedly ask to play on their expensive tablet is a risky and potentially costly prospect. With a range of child-friendly tablets on the market today from the iPad Mini to the Amazon Kindle Fire, parents can choose the perfect tablet for their kids.

iPad Mini

For parents who have full sized iPads, the iPad Mini is the perfect pint sized tablet which is easy for kids to hold and handle. The iPad Mini has access to over 375,000 apps available from the app store, which range from educational apps to the most popular games. The device has a long battery life and a great camera as well. For responsible kids who are already familiar with the Apple brand, this is a great choice.

Kurio 10

Touted by the manufacturer as “the ultimate Android tablet for families”, the Kurio 10 offers customised content controlled exclusively by parents. The device has the capacity to set up eight separate profiles each with their own customised app settings, internet access and time limits for use. With a relatively large touchscreen display and TV compatibility, the Kurio is a good option for families with multiple users who are interested in controlling content.

Amazon Kindle Fire

Amazon specifically designed this model to be kid-friendly by incorporating a strong display that’s 30 times harder than plastic, and customised parental control options. With a simple password system, parents can monitor and block content as they see fit. With 22 million films, magazines, books and music files available for download, the Kindle Fire offers an impressive array of content specifically targeted to younger audiences.

These days, it has been reported that children are becoming tablet-savvy before they can even talk. Selecting the right tablet for your child will likely depend on a range of factors from price points to durability to parental control options. Apple products are known for setting the bar in various technological markets, and the iPad Mini is no exception. As other companies strive to achieve excellence in functionality and design, the market is developing rapidly, offering consumers a range of reliable and reasonably priced options for children’s tablets.

Posted in: Editorial
By October 29, 2013 Read More →

Android 4.4 KitKat launch date set

Android 4.4 KitKat launch dateGoogle’s latest Android OS, aka KitKat, could be launched as soon as November 5th. That’s if the event invitation several gadget sites are receiving is anything to go by.

The invites have been sent out for a Google press conference that is being held on November 5th in Israel and it id thought that the main thrust of the press conference will be to officially introduce Android 4.4 KitKat and, most likely show it off on some of the latest Nexus hardware.

The invite seems to also indicate that LG are going to be taking part which makes sense as LG are the manufacturer of the Nexus 5, and could even be producing a 4G LTE version of the Nexus 4 as well. The image of the invite shows a smartphone that has a KitKat running through it so this is probably hinting at what we can expect from the event.

This invite has been provided by a company called Ronlight Digital that is a distributor of LG products in the country, so we could get to see another Google press event in the US before this one taking place in Israel.

Source: Gadgety.co.il

Posted in: News, Phones
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By October 29, 2013 Read More →

Sony Xperia Z1 unboxing and demo video

sony-xperia-z1The Sony Xperia Z1 is receiving a great deal of media coverage at the moment and you’ll probably have seen the lengthy TV commercials and billboards advertising the Z1.

The Xperia Z1 ins one of a few smartphones hitting the market with a full HD screen but one of the features that makes the Z1 stand out from the crowd is that it has an IP58 rating, meaning that not only is it dust-proof but it’s water resistant up to a depth of 1 metre. This means that you can take the Xperia Z1 with you to the local pool and take photos underwater.

Recently there have been a number of innovations in the camera phone arena. At one end of the spectrum Nokia are cramming in as many pixels as they can with the sensor on the Lumia 1020 hitting a massive 41 megapixels. At the other end of the range HTC have opted for a lower pixel count and have made the individual pixel size larger for better light gathering. Sony, of course, have their own take on the camera and the Z1 features a 20.7 megapixel shooter with Sony Exmor RS and Sony’s award-winning G Lens.

Sony have also added a wide array of image processing tools, including and AR Effect mode to add some fun animations to your pictures. Ranging from dinosaurs to ocean-life, these fully customisable themes can be easily edited.

The Sony Xperia Z1 has plenty to offer in terms of specification so in our unboxing and demo video that you can see below, we just touch on a few.

 Sony Xperia Z1 specification:

  • 2G Network GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 – all versions
  • 3G Network HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100 – all versions
  • 4G Network LTE 800 / 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1800 / 1900 / 2100 / 2600 – C6903
  • LTE 700 / 850 / 900/ 1700 / 1900 / 2100 / 2600 – C6906
  • Micro-SIM
  • Dimensions: 144 x 74 x 8.5 mm (5.67 x 2.91 x 0.33 in)
  • Weight: 170 g (6.00 oz)
  • IP58 certified – dust proof and water resistant over 1 metre and 30 minutes
  • Display: TFT capacitive touchscreen, 16M colours, 1080 x 1920 pixels, 5.0 inches
  • Protection Shatter proof and scratch-resistant glass
    • Triluminos display
    • X-Reality Engine
  • 3.5mm jack
  • Memory Card slot: microSD, up to 64 GB
  • Internal Memory:16 GB, 2 GB RAM
  • WLAN Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Wi-Fi Direct, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot
  • Bluetooth v4.0 with A2DP
  • NFC
  • microUSB v2.0 (MHL), USB On-the-go
  • Primary Camera: 20.7 MP, autofocus, LED flash
  • Secondary Camera: 2 MP, [email protected]
  • OS: Android OS, v4.2 (Jelly Bean)
  • CPU: Quad-core 2.2 GHz Krait 400
  • Accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass
  • Radio: Stereo FM radio with RDS
  • GPS  with A-GPS support and GLONASS
  • TV-out (via MHL A/V link)
  • Battery: Non-removable Li-Ion 3000 mAh battery
By October 28, 2013 Read More →

LG Announces the LG G Flex

LG G Flex 003We mentioned a couple of weeks ago that LG were gearing up to launch a new device with a flexible display. There were rumours that Samsung too would have curved or flexible screen versions of the Note 3 on the market soon too.

LG have beaten the competition to it though and have today announced the LG G Flex, which they say is the first smartphone on the market to offer such a design.

Full spec and details form LG follow:

Posted in: News, Phones
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By October 28, 2013 Read More →

Which budget Tablet is for you?

Christmas is coming and everyone and their mother is launching a tablet it appears and it’s a race to the bottom. As much as the big names like to push their top end tablets, filling them full of every technical goodie known to man, the other end of the market is just as big a battle. Finding the right mix of tech for the lowest price tag is arguably more of a challenge.

This year sees a few new names entering the ring. However, rebranding does seem to be in play this year. Tesco are pushing an Archos tablet and Argos a Bush. Where is your money best spent? We have taken to time to put as many of the plausible candidates into a table for your convenience.

Screen Size

Res

RAM

CPU

Battery

Camera

Storage

Expandable

Connections

Weight

Price

CC-KS._V354990838_Amazon Kindle Fire HD

7″

1280 x 800 (216 ppi)

1GB

Dual-Core 1.5 GHz

10 hours

None

8 or 16GB

GPS,microUSB

Bluetooth, Wi-Fi

345 grams

£119

CC-KT._V353539374_Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 7

7″

1920 x 1200 (323 ppi)

2GB

Quad-Core 2.2 GHz

11 hours

Front-facing HD camera

16, 32 or 64GB

GPS, microUSB

Bluetooth,

Wi-Fi, optional 4G

303 grams

£199

main_letsWatch
Tesco Hudl

7″

1440×900 (242ppi)

1GB

1.5GHz A9 Quad-Core

9 hours

3Mp rear camera + front-facing 2Mp

16GB

microSD, HDMI out, microUSB,

Bluetooth, Wi-Fi

370 grams

£119.99
(something about Club Card points also)

xl_avoca-7-624 Carphone Warehouse Avoca

7″

800 x 480 (133ppi)

512MB

Dual-Core 1GHz

8 hours

0.3Mp front facing

8GB

microSD
Mini USB

Wi-Fi

Unknown

£99.99 (currently discounted to £49)

Argos-MyTablet
Argos MyTablet

7″

1024×600 (169ppi)

1GB

Dual-Core 1.6GHz

5 hours

2MP + front-facing 0.3MP

8GB

microSD, HDMI out, microUSB,

Bluetooth, Wi-Fi

Unknown

£99.99

lenovo-tablet-ideatab-a3000-front
Lenovo Ideapad

7”

1024×600

1 GB

Quad-Core 1.2GHz

7 hours

5.0 MP + 0.3mp front-facing

16GB

A-GPS, microUSB, microSD

Bluetooth, WiFi

399 grams

£130

GalaxyTab3-Press-04-580-100
Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7.0

 

7”

1024 x 600 (169ppi) 1GB dual-core 1.2GHz 10 hours 3.2MP + 8GB or 16GB microSD Wi-Fi,

Bluetooth,
optional 4G

300 grams

£160
329835-google-nexus-7-2013 Google Nexus 7

7″

1920 x 1200 (323ppi)

2GB

Quad-Core 15GHz

6 hours

5MP rear, 1.2 MP front

16GB or 32GB

GPS

Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, optional 4G

340 grams

from £199

ipad-mini-retina-1

iPad mini 2

7.9”

2048 x 1536 (324ppi)

1GB

Dual core A7 1.3GHz

10 hours

5MP rear,1.2 MP front

16GB

HDMI out, A-GPS

Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, optional 4G

331 grams

from £269

There are many, many more to choose from. If you are purchasing for  a child, the Archos Childpad seems a logical choice for parental control at a great price from Toys R Us. For those not in the know when it comes to tablets and merely looking for a quick thrill the Hudl seems to check all boxes at a low price. Someone with more experience would see the Kindle HDX or the Nexus 7 as the most viable options. Of course the iPad Mini with Retina display enters there as the money not quite so limited token choice.

Posted in: Tablets
By October 27, 2013 Read More →

Google Nexus 7 (2013) unboxing video

Google nexus 7As described as the tablet bargain of the year on our Mobile Tech Addicts Podcast Google’s ground-breaking 7” tablet is back with a refresh. What was already a pretty tidy package for the money now has even more under the hood for casual user alongside the hardcore Android devotee.

Whilst the Nexus 7 2013 version has been around since July of this year we figured you would be best having a look at it before the new Retina iPad Mini debuts in that all important run up to Christmas. With a price tag ranging from £199 for the 16GB, to £299 for the 32GB LTE variant the Nexus 7 packs some serious horsepower and offers great value for money when you consider the specification you get.

Here we are with Matt’s Nexus 7 unboxing video to start us off and then I’ll be doing a full review, and a comparison to other 7″ tablets, shortly after.

By October 26, 2013 Read More →

Nokia Lumia 1020 Review

nokia lumia 1020 reviewSince Nokia began their partnership with Microsoft back in 2011 the Finnish company have fast become the number one manufacturer of Windows Phone 8 devices. This seems to have put other manufacturers off as at the moment there are only a select few other companies who have Windows Phone 8 devices on the market (HTC, Huawei, Samsung respectively). This could of course be down to the sheer amount of quality smartphones that Nokia have in the marketplace, but its more likely to be that Nokia Windows devices have extra features/functions compared to all others – or just the influence Microsoft now has since it purchased Nokia’s phone business.

Nokia do seem have fought super hard for Windows Phone 8 to try and make the operating system and them as a company succeed once again. The results so far have been quite positive for both parties but it could still be better as it still stands some way behind Android and iOS, but could Nokia release a game changing device to make consumers choose the Windows Phone 8 platform? Could Nokia release a smartphone with a spectacular camera, the likes which we’ve only ever seen once before on their own Nokia Pureview 808? Well, they’ve released what they believe to be the answer – the Nokia Lumia 1020 with its astonishingly high pixel count of 41 in a Carl Zeiss lens with full Xenon flash to accompany it!

To find out how the Lumia 1020 fares in the current market and to have all of your questions about the device answered I suggest reading on through my review and all will be revealed. Hopefully you will have already seen Matt’s Unboxing video of the Lumia 1020 but if you haven’t click the link so that you have a better idea of what to expect when reading the Nokia Lumia 1020 Review

Posted in: Phones, Reviews
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By October 25, 2013 Read More →

Keeping Your Mobile Data Safe

mobile securityOver the past decade we’ve become increasingly aware of the importance of online security. Everything we do online is a risk, from sending an email to buying an item from an online store. With prying eyes looking for any opportunity to extract our personal information, we now take some extreme measures to prevent this from happening.

Emails are being encrypted and sites are doing everything they can to ensure that any transactions are secure and that details entered cannot be accessed by anyone who doesn’t have the right. With businesses now looking for their employees to utilise modern technology and work wherever they are, whenever they can, using whatever device they have available; there is now added importance in keeping mobile data secure too. The rise in BYOD (bring your own device) in business has been great for employees who can use their own products without having to learn about new operating systems or programs, but security has been an issue in some cases.

Enterprise mobility and cloud computing have meant that IT is just about anywhere, and constantly at our fingertips. If we have to work on a project due in a matter of hours, we can. If we need to send an important email to seal a deal, we can. The problem is that the information being shared is leaving a digital snail trail and measures are having to be created to stop this data being accessed by those who have no right to see it.

Some are implementing measures having already experienced data leakages or theft first-hand, while others are trying to develop strategies to prevent anything happening down the line. Whichever approach is being taken, it’s important to get it right, because users trying to work on their own mobile devices won’t want the same sort of heavy-handed approach to security that they experience in the workplace.

Nobody wants to be sacrificing their user experience for security, because it just means that users can’t have fun with their devices anymore. Entering passwords after every click or being blocked from accessing certain sites or documents for fear of security breaches won’t be good for anyone, and essentially makes BYOD irrelevant because it’s no longer your device.

One good case study is the BlackBerry Enterprise platform, which helps administrators to manage BlackBerry devices as well as cross-platform security (meaning it covers iOS and Android devices as well). This allows for the smooth and seamless flow of data, without compromising security to do it – the happy medium if you like. To be productive, sometimes you need to access certain files and websites, and this is where the approach to BYOD needs to be considered rather than down to interpretation.

 

World-class Data analysis solutions

By October 25, 2013 Read More →

Amazon.co.uk Appstore gives away free app bundle worth over £15

wpid-2013-10-25-12-37-24.pngFor today only, Amazon Appstore is giving away six free apps worth over £15 for free!

Including everything from popular game Angry Birds, to interactive puzzles and an app that turns your tablet into an interactive whiteboard; the bundle is part of the ‘Free App of the Day’ initiative, which enables customers to download a paid app or game for free every day.

All ‘Free Apps of the Day’ and bundles are specially selected and customers can discover these directly from the Amazon Appstore on Kindle Fire tablet devices.

A full list of the free apps including in the bundle include…

  • Splashtop Whiteboard (RRP £6.16)
  • Fishdom Premium (RRP £3.19)
  • Angry Birds Star Wars Premium HD (RRP £1.99)
  • Toca Builders (RRP £1.93)
  • The Room (RRP £1.49)
  • Diner Dash Deluxe (RRP £0.63)
Posted in: Apps & Games, News
Tags: , ,