Author Archive: Matt

More than 20 years in the IT industry. Blogging with a passion and thirst for new technology since 2005.

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By January 2, 2014 Read More →

More on the HTC One successor

HTC-One-BackWe spoke about the rumoured HTC One replacement a while ago and now more details of the new flagship phone from HTC, codenamed the HTC M8, have been tweeted by the ever-accurate @evleaks. It would seem that the specs that we hoped for last year could well come to fruition…

Preliminary HTC M8 specs: Snapdragon MSM8974, 5″ 1080p display, 2GB RAM, UltraPixel rear / 2.1MP front cams, 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, KK, Sense 6.0

As yet there’s no news on the final name of the new smartphone but we’re expecting to hear more about it at or just before MWC this year.

Posted in: News, Phones
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By January 2, 2014 Read More →

LG G2 unboxing and hands on video

LG G2 unboxingA few months ago LG released the LG G2 and shortly after the LG Google Nexus 5 also went on sale. It seems that the Nexus 5 all but stole the headlines from the LG G2 which, underneath, is virtually the same as its Google-branded stable mate.

The LG G2 has also been massively popular though and particularly when the Nexus 5 was in short supply, saw strong sales figures to the later part of 2013.

It’s taken a while for us to get our hands on one to review but finally we have one here and I’m putting it up against the Nexus 5 that I’ve loved using ever since I getting that a few months ago now.

As mentioned above, the G2 and the Nexus 5 have very similar specs. The same CPU and Memory, 2.3GHz Snapdragon 800 and 2GB RAM respectively. The G2 has a 13MP camera versus the 8MP shooter on the Nexus 5 and the G2 also has a slightly larger 5.2″ HD IPS screen.

Perhaps the most notable difference is with the OS and user interface, though, with the LG G2 sat on Android 4.2.2 with the omipresent LG overlay whereas the Nexus 5 has Android 4.4 KitKat and a very thin skinning.

In the video below you can see the LG G2 unboxed and in a little more detail and some comparisons to the Nexus 5. And for those of you that are all about the numbers, there’s a benchmark test too..

 

By December 31, 2013 Read More →

Top Technology Toys and Tools of 2013

2013-tech-futureJust one year ago we didn’t have watches that run your favourite apps or a palm-sized HDTV streaming device. The technology advances in 2013 brought us even more ways to enjoy TV, watch our homes and talk to our smartphones. Check out these favourite tech toys and tools of the year and add some of them to your must have list of technology for 2014.

Posted in: Editorial, News
By December 29, 2013 Read More →

HTC KitKat update status

HTC KitKat updateFollowing the launch of Android 4.4 KitKat, HTC were one of the first manufacturers to come out and say that they were going to make 4.4 available on several of their current flagship devices, most notably the HTC One.

HTC have now gone a step further and in a bid to be as transparent as possible when it comes to firmware updates, have added a couple of pages to their US site, dedicated to sharing news and the status of firmare updates.

Currently we can see that Android 4.4 KitKat is complete for the HTC One Unlocked, Developer and Google editions with AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint versions still going through the integration process.

HTC have gone further still and have provided an infographic to explain the processes that must be completed to in order to deploy an Android OS update.

So far there’s no update for my unlocked, UK HTC One and there’s not the same level of information for US here in the UK, which is a shame. I hope that HTC UK will follow suit sometime soon.

For more on this and to monitor the update status of the HTC One Max, HTC One Mini, HTC One X/X+ and HTC One S, head over to the HTC Software updates page.

Posted in: News, Phones
By December 27, 2013 Read More →

BYOD Security: Balancing Risks and Rewards

Employee on LaptopAs more and more employees are bringing their own mobile devices to work, the debate over the risks and rewards of bring your own device, BYOD, is heating up. On one side of the argument, analysts such as Nucleus Research are pointing out hidden costs of BYOD, such as increased support and security requirements, and wondering if the gains truly offset these expenses. On the other hand, the BYOD trend seems destined to win over all objections, with Gartner predicting that half of employers will require workers to supply their own devices by 2017. Given this eventuality, rather than resisting BYOD without reservations, the prudent strategy for enterprises is to investigate BYOD’s potential risks and rewards and develop security practices suitable for the oncoming mobile device era.

Securing Your Mobile Perimeter

Data security remains one of the biggest challenges facing enterprise BYOD adoption. A Dimension Data global enterprise survey released this October found that 70 percent of business leaders view employee use of mobile devices at work as potentially dangerous and expensive. Careless mixing of business and personal device usage can compromise both enterprise and consumer information and introduce malware to corporate networks.

To address this, mobile providers and security specialists have been developing innovative approaches to securing devices. For instance, the latest BlackBerry 10 operating system employs a new technology called Balance which, as the name implies, helps manage the act of balancing business and personal use of mobile devices. BlackBerry Balance lets enterprises create a virtual partition on devices separating business and personal workspace. Encryption by a 256-bit AES safeguards company data and email accounts within the device’s business workspace. Users can swipe apps pages to switch between business and personal profiles, but they cannot share files across the enterprise-protected wall.

Discouraging Device Theft

Another BYOD risk that concerns employers is stolen devices. Lookout Mobile Security, a company that recovers lost smartphones, estimates that lost mobile phones cost Americans $30 billion annually. In the District of Columbia alone, 1,829 smartphones were stolen during robberies last year. Mobile devices are most frequently lost at bars and pubs and during festivals and are also prone to get misplaced during bus and plane trips.

The Seltzer Law Firm, which specializes in employment law, has developed some recommended best practices to help address this type of issue. Among other precautions, it recommends that employers require workers to activate apps for finding lost smartphones and to report stolen devices within 24 hours.

Planning Disaster Recovery Policies

What can employers do in the event a device is stolen or a network is breached, or even if an employee simply leaves the company with sensitive data on their smartphone? As with any other area of IT, it’s vital to have policy for how to respond in the event of a data disaster. In its BYOD best practices manual, software provider Citrix recommends that employers should design networks so that they can remotely terminate access to company apps and databases, close employee software-as-a-service, SaaS, accounts, and selectively wipe work-related data from worker devices.

Posted in: Editorial, News
By December 25, 2013 Read More →

Merry Christmas

xmasOn behalf of the team here at tracyandmatt I’d just like to take this opportunity to wish all of our readers and listeners a very Merry Christmas! Thank you all for fab support and for following us on twitter etc.

Thanks also from me to the guys that work with me on the site, Gareth, James, Phil and Chris. Your helps and support is amazing and greatly appreciated.

Over the next few months we have a lot planned and there will be some changes as well as more of the same news, reviews and videos. We’ll be further developing our podcast hangouts and there’s a few other things up our sleeves too.

We’ll be be back to posting news and reviews again in a few days.

By December 21, 2013 Read More →

LG’s 105-inch curved TV

LG's 105-inch curved TVYesterday LG announced that they were to release the worlds first 105″ curved LCD TV at CES in 2014. Furthermore, the giant display will have a 21:9 aspect ratio, the likes of which we’ve not seen for some time.

The full press release from LG can be seen below:

Posted in: News, TV & Home Cinema
By December 16, 2013 Read More →

Google Glass unboxing video

Google Glass unboxing videoGoogle Glass has been around for a little while now with early ‘Explorer Edition’ versions being made available to a select few testers and developers at the beginning of 2013. Over the past few months the Explorer programme has been further extended and I’ve now been lucky enough to have been invited to join and have just now received my very own Google Glass. Excited is not the word…

Google Glass has been a little controversial of late and there have been some privacy concerns, in fact some shops and restaurants going so far as to ban their use. Part of my desire to use Glass is to consider these issues myself and I’ll be talking about this more as I get to use it more.

So as is always the way with any new tech I get my hands on, I’ve recorded a short unboxing video for your viewing pleasure. You’ll notice that I’m not in my normal studio environment recording this one, I’m in a hotel having just picked the Glass up. As a result, there is some noise for the first minute and 10 seconds, so I hope that doesn’t detract from the video too much.

Google Glass Unboxing video

Google Glass Specification:

  • Dual-core 1GHz OMAP CPU*
  • 1GB RAM (682MB available to developers)*
  • OS: Android 4.0.4
  • 3 axis gyroscope
  • 3 axis accelerometer
  • 3 axis magnetometer (compass)
  • Touchpad Control
  • Bone Conductor Speaker
  • 16GB Storage/ 12GB Free
  • 1 Day Battery Life
  • Voice Control
  • WiFi 802.11b/g
  • Bluetooth
  • Titanium Headband
  • 5MP Camera
  • 720P video recording
  • 640×360 display

* Specs for the CPU and RAM are not totally clear, has been a lot of contradictory information so we’re going with the consensus.

 

Other than the touchpad, Google Glass can be controlled using “voice actions”. To activate Glass, wearers tilt their heads 30° upward (which can be altered for preference) or tap the touchpad, and say “O.K., Glass.” Once Glass is activated, wearers can say an action, such as “Take a picture”, “Record a video”, “Hangout with [person/Google+ circle]”, “Google ‘What year was Wikipedia founded?'”, “Give me directions to the Eiffel Tower”, and “Send a message to John”

By December 12, 2013 Read More →

Samsung loses another fight with Apple

apple-vs-samsung1_2The seemingly tit-for-tat battle between Apple and Samsung has been rumbling on for quite some time and there have been wins for both sides during the legal wrangles.

However, Samsung’s latest loss has come as something of a surprise and it’s happened in Korea, Samsung’s own home.

Patent violation claims have been raised by Samsung against Apple and Samsung steadfastly maintain that Apple are infringing upon key patents and have been calling for a sales ban on a number of Apple products in South Korea – including the iPhone 4S, iPhone 5 and iPad 2. The three separate claims are based on three patent infringement allegations these Apple products were using mobile messaging technology from Samsung.

In a statement Samsung said:

“We are disappointed by the court’s decision, as Apple has continued to infringe our patented mobile technologies, we will continue to take the measures necessary to protect our intellectual property rights.”

The sales ban was rejected in the Korean court and the claim of around £58k in damages was also dismissed.

This will be a bitter loss for Samsung but the legal tussle between the two tech-giants is sure to wage on for some time to come.

Posted in: News
Tags: ,
By December 12, 2013 Read More →

LG Gx details emerge

lgLG seem to have had a pretty successful end to 2013 with two of the more popular Android smartphones on the market at the moment coming from LG; The Nexus 5 and the flagship LG G2.

Already we’re starting to see some details of what could be the LG G2’s successor and if ppomppu.co.kr are correct the device will be called the LG Gx.

Based upon a google translate of the page, the LG Gx will have a diaplay slightly larger than the Nexus 5 and G2 at 5.5-inches,  a claimed 2GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage and LTE-A support. It has also been said that there will be a 13-megapixel rear camera and a whopping 3140 mAh battery.

Where the information seems to have been called in to question is in the chipset department where the claim is that a Qualcomm 600 rather than the ‘usual’ 800 is listed which doesn’t seem to ring true as the devices that the Gx will succeed are 800 based.

We’ll be keeping or eyes peeled for more on this one as we’re pretty big fans of the Nexus 5!

LG-Gx5

Posted in: News, Phones
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