Editorial

By June 29, 2015 Read More →

Get the Best Deals On laptops

Desktops are sooo yesterday and iPads while pretty cool for showing off, are just aren’t your thing when it comes to some solid heavy duty work. But your old playmate has been under the fire lately and Macs are super expensive, anyway. So where do you hunting for a new laptop? How do you choose the best ones to suit your needs and your budget? And from where do you get the best deals? Well, we are here to answer all your queries, and help you bag the best online deals on laptops!

So let’s answer the most pressing question: from where do you shop online to make the most of it? The answer’s simple. Just head over to newegg.com for the best online deals on the planet!

 

Top 6 Laptop Picks For You

1. Acer Laptop Aspire E5-573G-5: 8 GB Memory. Intel Core i5. 2.20GHz. Need any more specifications? At $469.99 this is a fantastic deal for the college student. Thin, light weight and also suitable for slight gaming, this is a budget laptop that is ideal for a normal consumer experience.

2. DELL Laptop Inspiron 15 i3543-3251BLK: Boasting of a similar Intel Core i5, but a 4 GB Memory, this is for someone who swears by the touch screen. Along with an Intel HD Graphics 5500, this is great for those who use laptops for entertainment purposes or to view multimedia. Accompanied by a great battery, and at a reasonable $549.99, this is suitable both for home use and office work.

3. ASUS Laptop EeeBook X205TA-DS01-GD-OFCE: You may raise your eyebrows at its 2 GB Memory but hear us out. At an unbelieving $199.99, this comes with a 1 year Office 365 and an Intel Atom quad-core processor, this is the best choice for those who do not use laptops for professional purposes or are strapped of cash. Perfect for high school or kids who want to experiment with technology. Plus it’s rather pretty, with a MacBook Air finish.

4. Lenovo Laptop G50 (80E501G3US): This is probably the BEST laptop available at its price. Super slim, HD Webcam, One Key Recovery, Multitouch Touchpad. This one just keeps getting better the more you explore it. If you’re unfamiliar in the tech territory and don’t know which one to buy, just order this one for $649.99. You won’t regret it. We promise you.

5. HP Laptop 355 G2 AMD A-Series A8-6410: Looking for something similar in a cheaper variant? This HP Laptop will suit most of your daily needs, and is great for those who travel frequently. Moreover, this comes with a free game offer, assuring you that its $389.99 price tag is just worth it. Yep, this one promises “productivity on the go.”

6. DELL Alienware 17 ANW17-2136SLV: Gaming pros, meet the king. With the 4th Generation Intel Core i7 and 8GB Memory on the deal, there’s also a gorgeous Batman Arkham Knight free game with the purchase. Amazing build quality and lighting, at $1399 this is the ultimate portable gaming laptop ever and is seriously TOUGH. Dark Knight Fans, rejoice!

Before buying a laptop, always decide for what purpose you shall use it for. Is it for studies? For office? For games? Or some heavy Photoshop design work? Once you’re clear on that, fix a budget and check out the offers online.

 

Posted in: Editorial, Laptops
By June 17, 2015 Read More →

Ahead in the Clouds…

Ahead in the CloudsWhat is The Cloud?

So, what exactly is The Cloud?  Put into simple terms, Cloud Based Storage is a sort of online back -up, a means of saving files onto the Web rather than just your computer’s hard drive.  Your information and files can then be accessed from any computer, anywhere with a connection – which is virtually everywhere these days – just by logging in.

Compared to the potentially massive costs – in terms of both time and money spent – of running your own servers, and then the costs of any IT support if anything were to go awry – it can be relatively inexpensive as well as reassuring, too.

A bit concerned about putting all your information out there?  Don’t be, security has come on in leaps and bounds since the inception of Cloud-based storage, with the best business storage service providers using an encrypted connection when you upload or download a file, or when it’s synched across your devices.  The majority also encrypt the data when “at rest” – that is, when it’s stored on their servers – so even they will have no idea what you’re storing. 

What Benefits Does it Bring to your Business?

  1. Save everything.  Never, ever lose a file again.  Your files are stored securely, usually over multiple sites, meaning that in the event of a physical loss such as theft of office laptops, or disaster such as fire or flood, you don’t lose your files.  Of course, it makes sense to have more than one back up and store files locally as well.  There’s never anything wrong with a belt and braces approach.
  2. Automatic back-up.  It just happens, seamlessly and quietly in the background.  You need never fear a power cut or blue screen of death again.
  3. Convenience.  Files can be synched across all of your devices.  So, perhaps you’ve been working on a document but are meeting a client before heading home.  Save the document on to the cloud from your desktop, then continue editing it that evening, on, say a tablet to which that file is also synched.  In an age when many of us work from home, this is invaluable.
  4. Collaboration.  There are sharing mechanisms so you could securely share certain documents with staff or colleagues – either read-only or with anyone authorised (that is, those to whom you’ve chosen to give the log in details) being able to modify them.
  5. Money Saving. Possibly more cost-effective per gigabyte to store data, since Cloud service providers can provide the storage far more cheaply than you could provide the space on discs, plus offsite backup disks etc.
  6. Security.  Despite common fears, most cloud storage providers will have far stronger security than the average business has in place.  Cloud providers are like any other major Internet company with regard to their procedures to protect themselves from being hacked. However in their case their entire business and reputation would be irreparably damaged if they were breached.  Just make sure your password is totally different from any others (perhaps even consider a password manager… but that’s a whole other story) and if possible enable two factor authentication.
  7. Choice.  There are now countless Cloud service providers out there, so you should be able to find exactly the service and provider that fits your requirements.  Budget is a major factor, but security is paramount.  Look for good tech support, and is data-only backup enough or do you need full disaster recovery.  There’s a provider for every business.

In this day and age, storing everything in the Cloud is definitely the way to get ahead – and stay there.

San-iT are a North West based company offering a range of Cloud services and cloud support options for your business.

 

 

Posted in: Editorial
By June 9, 2015 Read More →

Checking in with easyJet

EASYJET  NEW PLANE LIVERY Pix.Tim AndersonThis last week easyJet has taken the opportunity to share some of their recent developments with the public in what seems to be becoming a yearly tradition. For select group of the press an event in an aircraft hangar in Milan contained a demonstration of some of the research alongside a positive attitude and some beaming pride in what easyJet has achieved.

EasyJet has the reputation of being a better quality of low end travel providing something of a bus service to popular areas in Europe. Whilst maintaining a steady and commendable reputation easyJet has a lot of interesting developments happening behind the scenes to reduce time for which their planes are out of action and efforts to reduce costs across the board to pass on to the customers.

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One of the first innovations easyJet are proud to demonstrate is a simple but cost efficient inclusion. Oculus Rift can help engineers determine problems by posting virtual notes to areas in need of repair around a virtual aircraft. There was also reference made to cabin staff receiving training via the wearable goggles. This does not seem to be a massive stride however from easyJet’s internal point of view there is potential.

EasyJet are upgrading their application. Throwing in a few new features to keep their app fast and easy to use, not to mention a handy tool to cover everything you might need from your flight experience. For starters the app has been reformatted for 64 bit architecture to keep it running lightning fast.

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Secondly, a new feature will allow the user to receive updates about their flight including notifications from the likes of Periscope if there has been a disruption. A helping hand has been extended to the user to guide them through the airport to find their gate, at the moment this only works in Gatwick however the are rolling it out to their busiest 10 airports and they hope to have it in place by launch in July.

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Whilst it sounds alarming easyJet demonstrated their ability to print parts for their aircraft. Rather than having to pay for costly replacements a process is being finalised whereby easyJet can utilise some cutting edge 3D printing technologies and first class materials to manufacture their own parts. Whilst this is a time consuming process the cost implications will be notable without any impact on safety.

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Two years ago easyJet demonstrated their drone scanning ideas to scan a plane in minutes to access damage that would normally take a the human eye a few hours. The drone technology is constantly evolving and new developments are being made at a refreshing rate. Safety seems to be the focus this year with collision detection being a new addition. Not only for the drone to keep a close yet safe distance from the surface of the plane but for Engineers who might be working within close proximity to the plane and drone at the time of scanning.

It is refreshing to see a company that may not have a reputation for innovation, yet easyJet has become an example of proactive development, not only in cost saving but technological advancements. Their model is interesting and somewhat commendable.

By June 3, 2015 Read More →

Five products you didn’t know needed rechargeable batteries

duracell rechargeable batteriesRechargeable batteries are often the most cost-effective and energy efficient way to power your personal and office appliances.

When you think of rechargeable batteries you may automatically think of the traditional AA batteries and the charger that you plug into the wall.

However there are many products you probably use which you perhaps don’t realise rely on rechargeable batteries.

 

Mobile phones

Almost everyone owns a mobile phone in this day and age. It will be used daily whether it’s for business or social reasons. You probably haven’t ever thought about it, but your mobile phone relies on a rechargeable battery in order to work. Like any other rechargeable battery, mobile phone batteries are charged using mains electricity but through a cable. Mobile phone batteries can be repeatedly charged many times but may eventually lose power and need to be replaced. You can buy mobile phone batteries from Buy A Battery when their ability to retain charge eventually diminishes.

 

Cordless phones

Most homes no longer have a house phone that is tethered to the wall with a cord. Cordless phones allow the user freedom to move around their home. This freedom means that they rely on rechargeable batteries which negates the need of constant mains electricity use. These batteries are usually charged though a base unit but they can have batteries which need to be removed and put into a charging unit plugged into a wall outlet. Just like with mobile phones, eventually these batteries will start to lose power and their charge time will continue to reduce, but replacements are available.

 

Laptops

Another product that you might not realise uses rechargeable batteries is a laptop computer. Again, it may be something you’ve never really considered having a rechargeable battery. A laptop’s power comes from its battery, which, just like a mobile phone, can be charged using mains electricity. This battery then has the ability to hold that charge, making the laptop portable. It is charged through a mains cable when the battery runs low. Like all rechargeable batteries, it has a long lifespan but will eventually need replacing as time goes on.

 

Power tools

For DIY enthusiasts or workers in any manual trade, you’ll know it’s extremely convenient to own a power tool that has a rechargeable battery. While some drills and other tools can run on mains, this can leave you tethered to a wall or having long extension cords trailing after you. Most modern power tools come with rechargeable battery units, which, once fully charged in a base unit, give out maximum energy to make your life easier. Often, these battery units are interchangeable between many different products, such as drills, saws, sanders and torches, which are of the same brand.

 

Wireless technology

Wireless technology is a very convenient and sought after commodity. While they may connect to your computer wirelessly, wireless keyboards and mice use batteries to draw their power. It’s definitely beneficial to use rechargeable batteries for these, as running out of power half way through an important piece of work or during the office day is a serious inconvenience.

By April 17, 2015 Read More →

The Top Titles for Mobile Gamers

14758403742_704f51fa09_bGaming via a PC, tablet or smartphone is one of the more popular modes of play nowadays. With 2015’s new devices able to host graphical and processing abilities that were once merely the preserve of consoles and high-spec gaming PCs, high spec gameplay is no longer out of reach to the common gamer.

 

Mobile games have become the avenue of choice for many people wanting to play, however with so many out there, it can be hard to sort the good from the bad. To help you choose, here are some of our favourites!

 

101-in-1 Games

Developed by Nordcurrent, the massive collection of games in this app gives players well over 101 names to play, for free, and all within one click! Puzzle games, racing, action, sports, cooking, shooting, drawing; practically every genre one could want is featured, and they all come in a variety of languages, for ease of use.

 

Mr Smith Casino

For lovers of pulse-ripping casino games, there’s no better host than Mr Smith Casino. This exhaustive gaming site is a dream to use, and features games from the traditionally popular poker, to fun new titles, such as the Starburst slots. You can either choose to play the site’s free to play games, or kick up the excitement with a wager or two, giving yourself the chance to win big!

 

Game Booster

Even if you think your gaming device is up to scratch in terms of technology, there’s always more you can do to tweak your settings and processes in order to boost those graphics and get those games running a little smoother. Game Booster let you do this by allowing users to turn off background processes to free up processing power, and its tweaking and diagnostics tools mean you’ll never suffer a tedious gaming crash again!

 

The Walking Dead: Season One

Fans of the ever-excellent Zombie-romping series The Walking Dead may have chanced upon this wonderful title from Telltale Games, but even if you haven’t caught the zombie bug yet, this app should be at the top of your download list. Winner of the 2012 Video Gaming Awards Game of the Year prize, this is unlike other gaming apps. With an utterly emotive, immersive story, gameplay that is both riveting and captivating. Featuring the ability for players to actually change the outcome of the story depending on their in-game actions, this is far more than a freemium or puzzle title, but should be played on a tablet instead of a smartphone, given its fairly meaty processing requirements.

 

Posted in: Apps & Games, Editorial
By April 1, 2015 Read More →

Top 3 Things to Consider when Buying a TV

Plasma_TV_Panasonic_TX-P_46_G_15_E_Front-650x447When considering buying a TV, most people only think of two factors; size and cost. To get a TV that is worth your money, you must look at other important aspects. The level of complexity that is compounded by the ever changing technology makes it hard to differentiate a great TV from a poor one; to the eye, they all look the same.

 

Source: www.gadgetreview.com

Here are some of the important aspects you should consider before buying a TV. 

Finance:

When it comes to buying the TV you may have to consider a tv on finance option. Many online stores now allow you to buy now and pay later or spread the cost over several months. Some even allow you up to 12 months interest free credit.

Display type:

The different display types available include LCD, LED, OLED, and plasma. Plasma display is ideal for relatively big TVs as they tend to have higher contrast ratio and excellent color quality. The problem with plasma TVs is low brightness which makes them prone to ambient light. LCD TVs are cheap and are more energy efficient than plasmas however, they have limited viewing angles. LED TVs are just LCD TVs that uses LEDs as a backlight and are more energy efficient compared to LCD TVs. OLED TVs feature one of the latest technologies to offer a more superior picture quality though they still get affected with glare.

Colour Depth:

This is the ability of the TV to reproduce more realistic images that are satisfying to the human eye. For a real bargain-priced TV, the bit depth should be “8 bits per channel’’ or more. TVs with a low colour depth give images that look exaggerated. 

Inputs: 

Most TVs comes with most essential inputs such as the coaxial F connector. But if you are planning on watching HD content, you should always choose one with a HDMI input. The higher the number of inputs, the better as you get many options to choose from. You can even enjoy old school movies from your old video recorder. HDCP input technology allows you to watch content from Blu-ray players. 

Manufacturer:

A TV can range in price massively depending solely on the brand name. Checking out customer reviews of the model you’re looking to buy is a great way of determining if you’re money is best spent elsewhere. There are a lot of new brands on the market offering TV’s for very cheap prices, however, the TV itself may only last a few months!

 

By April 1, 2015 Read More →

First Direct to launch new #@&? Jar saver app!!!

Screenshot 2015-03-31 17.43.29Finding new ways to put aside a bit of extra cash is not easy, so first direct has created a unique way to help its customers get in to the savings habit. The new #@&? Jar app allows people to put money aside for a rainy day, without changing their day to day behaviour.

The new app has been designed to ‘hear’ all the user’s swear words, automatically transferring money from their linked current account into their designated saving account.
Innovative voice recognition software identifies the user’s voice, so they only put money aside for their swearing slip-ups. The app then simply listens out for the user to say one of the words from a list of over 200 profanities such as ******, ******** and **********, helping them reach their savings goal in no time.

If users find their choice language is costing them too dearly, they can adjust the settings to add or remove certain words and set time limits for when the app will ‘listen’ to their language.
Zoe Shore, Head of Customer Communications at first direct commented;

“We’re always looking for new ways to engage our more mobile-savvy customers.

“Given the increased propensity for swearing these days, it seemed a perfect way to achieve something positive from what many consider to be negative. I for one think it’s a great way to get in to a savings habit.”

Look out for further announcements of when trials will begin. Put your money where your mouth is the new #@&? Jar app is set to revolutionise saving!

 

By March 27, 2015 Read More →

THE INSURANCE T&Cs YOU WISH YOU’D SEEN – GADGET EDITION

470807_TotalCoverage_PQ_v4.psbComplaints about insurance are commonplace, but now buyers of gadget insurance may have more reason to complain than others.

The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) recently stated that it had seen a doubling of the number of complaints about gadget insurance throughout 2014 – more notably, it found that approaching half of all claims turned down were incorrectly turned down.

The FOS found that insurers had applied the terms of the contracts incorrectly to valid claims – that or, as the BBC reported, the terms were “so ambiguous it was hard to see how anyone could make a successful claim”.

 

The best gadget insurance – or is it?

This prompted Bought By Many to look at the best gadget insurance policies on the market and see if the terms were clear to us. Our review included Gadget Cover Supercover, i-Digital Premier, Insure My Pocket Platinum, Insure My Mobile Phone Gold, Protect Your Bubble,Gadgetbuddy.com, Switched On Insurance, and Helpucover.

What they found was surprising – so, they have laid out the top unexpected policy terms to help you be armed when you go looking for your policy.

 

How to tell if you have the best gadget insurance

1. 14 days…

Many people are familiar with a “14 day cooling off period” from phone and broadband contracts – that is a period after purchase when you as a customer can cancel the contract with no penalty.

Several of the top gadget policies reviewed contained a 14 day cooling off period but also a 14-day ‘exclusion period’. This stipulates that for 14 days after purchase, you cannot make a claim. It’s reasonable to expect you are covered from the moment you have bought your insurance, but here that may not be the case.

2. Travel

Some travel insurance policies won’t cover you for high value electrical items (a select few will), so people naturally expect their gadget policy will. All of the top end policies sampled allowed a period of time abroad per year, but the lowest was only 30 days – 3 long holidays could put you close to that limit, and the strict wording we reviewed would then mean any claim (relating to the travel or not) could be denied.

3. Not all gadgets are created equal

All policies reviewed had an age restriction on the gadgets – the lowest required that the gadget had to be under 18 months old on the day you take the policy out.

Some others required that the gadget were bought from a UK retailer, therefore excluding online auctions like eBay or foreign purchases brought back from holidays. Some also specified different excesses, depending on the gadget type insured.

4. Unattended?

Some would say that if you leave your phone on the dash in your car window then you deserve what you get. Insurers would tend to agree as they commonly had a definition of “unattended” which might include leaving a gadget in a car, leaving it out of sight or even in one policy “beyond arm’s reach”.

The terms may be more stringent than expected – in some policies reviewed, it was ambiguous over whether leaving your phone on a table with a friend was considered “unattended” or not.

 

Home insurance for gadgets

Those who have been listening in their insurance classes will know that your boring old home insurance can include cover for mobiles and other gadgets as named items.

The cover can sometimes work out cheaper than buying gadget insurance separately – though you do need to take care to make sure you’re getting the same kind of cover, as most home insurance policies would require upgrade options to ensure you are covered for accidental damage and when taking your items out of your home. By contrast, these are standard features on many gadget policies.

We hope this helps you in getting to grips with your gadget cover, demystifying some of the world of insurance and helping to navigate if you have a complaint!

Posted in: Editorial, Gadgets
By March 15, 2015 Read More →

Sky made to give customer details to Copyright Troll

Sky-HQWe have seen this before and we will likely see this again. Some Sky Broadband subscribers suspected of illegally downloading movies could have their personal details handed over to what is know as a “copyright troll”. The service provider is obliged to turn over the names and addresses of the requested broadband customers to The Company You Keep (TCYK,) this action follow the loss of a long running court battle last year.

TCYK will then request compensation from the suspected torrent user by way of an IP address Sky attributed to the customer over the period suspected. TCYK are pushing to settle the case out of court under the threat of implied legal action,. The company monitors file-sharing websites for illegal activity and has internet service providers release details about the accounts holders suspected of infringing the copyright law.

“A company called TCYK LLC, which owns the rights to several copyrighted films, has claimed that a number of Sky Broadband customers engaged in unlawful file-sharing of some of its films,” Sky wrote in a letter to affected customers. ”In support of this claim, TCYK LLC says it has gathered evidence of individual broadband accounts (identified online by unique numbers called IP addresses) from which it claims the file sharing took place. It’s likely that TCYK LLC will contact you directly and may ask you to pay them compensation.”

Sky is unable to vouch for the validity of TCYK’s claims, however they are advising customers to closely examine the wording of any letters they receive before parting with cash, and consult the overly burdened Citizens Advice Bureau if they have any additional concerns.

If you have received a letter from your internet service provider regarding a lawsuit by TCYK, LLC. or you have been named as a defendant, you should contact an independent copyright attorney that can assist you in the case.

Moving forward we have looked at a couple of Virtual Pirvate Networks over the years and whilst they are never 100% they can keep you a little safer when browsing. There is currently a deal running on VPN  Unlimited who are offering their Lifetime Subscription for $39, or a 3 year subscription package for $19. A small price to pay for a little piece of mind.

Say goodbye to all your online privacy worries, for life. VPN Unlimited is your one-stop shop for protecting your WiFi connection, securing your online activity, and bypassing web content restrictions.

  • Secure public Wi-Fi connection: your data is hidden & encrypted
  • Unlimited traffic bandwidth: no need to worry about your data usage
  • Unlimited high-speed connection
  • A growing selection of servers globally
  • VPN Unlimited 3.0 added features
  • Fully downloadable global servers list
  • Fast server switching & app operating
  • Added servers in Romania, Canada, Hong Kong, Singapore, Ukraine, Japan, Texas (USA)
  • Hands-on statistics for each device (mobile & desktop)
  • iPhone 4 and up 
  • Android 4.0 and up
  • Mac: OS X 10.7 and up
  • Windows: Microsoft Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1
  • Linux: Debian GNU/Linux 7.0, Ubuntu 12.04+
  • Not compatible with Windows Phones
By March 10, 2015 Read More →

Time to consider the Apple Watch

watch-dmWe have been awaiting the Apple Watch launch since September last year. There has been a great deal of speculation since the inception and it seems every hardware manufacturer is getting in on the game. 6 months have passed, has Apple surpassed everyone expectations?
 
Over the years a large number of smartwatches have come into play, some have reshaped the landscape for wearables, but more often then not they have fallen by the wayside, disappearing off shelves and forgotten about. Lets have a look at how things have been shaped over the years.
 
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The first major player in recent Smartwatch evolution was the Sony Smartwatch. This tiny wearable might have had more in common with the iPod Shuffle than what we accept as a smartwatch today. A plastic clip on the back attached the body of the device to a changable band. The watch ran a simple OS that allowed basic interation with your smartphone, via a Sony watch client. A more primitive version of Android Wear. As with almost all smartwatches this was cursed with a charging method from hell. I personally owned one of these and whilst I took pride in wearing it, I didn’t find any real use for it outside of switching music tracks … when it worked.
The Smartwatch 2 and 3 evolved the range into a competitor, however at a time when Samsung was leading a very limited market.
 
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The Samsung Galaxy Gear was a terrific example of trying to push as much onto your wrist is possible. This expensive device utilised voice commands and included a simple camera. Whilst quite large and initally clocking in a terrible battery life, the Gear became almost an early benchmark of how well things could work. Samsung took the time to develop a short lived ecosystem for the Gear and whilst developers were sparse most of the key players were there. A solid build help sell the limited numbers but the numbers were good enough for Samsung to entertain the product line. Battery life improved and the charge mechanism, still a little cumbersome, certainly wasn’t as off putting as Sony’s attempt.
Samsung followed the original Gear with the Gear 2, Gear Neo, Gear Fit and most recently the Gear S. four devices that attempted to cover all walks of life, combining features Samsung figured people were looking for from the original Gear. The Gear range took a dramatic turn to the Tizen operating system from Android however it is left unappealing to many as, like the Apple Watch, the range of only compatible with certain Android phones from Samsung.
 
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LG has a range of ever improving Android Wear devices. After their first Orange exclusive phone watch, the ill-fated G910, LG decided to adopt the Android Wear OS and produce some of the most popular watches on the market. The G Watch is a perfect example of an entry level wearable, combining features with simple design and versatility. The LG Watch R is the bigger brother and pushes more of a traditional shape and form. Both certainly have their merits and flaws. LG has recently announced a move to the excellent WebOS platform for the LG Watch Urbane, with the most impressive looking design yet.
 
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Motorola seem to have the higher end of the market covered. The recent launch of the Apple Watch has seen a large number of folk happily announcing their preference of the Moto 360, this looks to be Apple’s main competitor. I use competitor in the loosest of sense as there isn’t a iPhone user that will be able to use this with their phone out of the box. Perhaps the best way to look at this is that Moto 360 users and those on the fence about smartwatches will not be migrating to Apple solely for their wrist mounted wearable. The 360 is a beautiful example of elegance and reliability in a smartwatch and alongside the original LG G Watch are the two watches most would recommend to someone on that fence.
 
 
Screenshot 2015-03-10 10.57.34
 
With some omissions from Pebble and Asus this brings us up to Apple’s first attempt, otherwise we could be here all day. In the 6 months since Apple first announced they would be making a smartwatch they have been able to see how the market is shaping and carefully approach it with the most desirable and well executed device. Or have they?
 
Money is a big factor when adopting a new device and whilst some like to pay top dollar for an impressive wristwatch, you are paying for something that might have a life span of two years. I have a fancy Omega left to me by my father, I plan to leave it to my son in turn and I am fairly certain it will still be operating when that time comes. Certainly the Sport model of the Apple watch priced £299 and £339 will be the most popular however, I couldn’t imagine wearing it all the time and the better bet is the Steel £479 – £949 for daily use, however that pricing is just painful. The £8,000 edition can be customised up to £13,500, is this an investment? Can it be considered a heirloom? Will it work in three years time without mild cursing?
 
The smartwatch actually comes in two sizes measured by height: 38mm (1.5in) with a resolution of 272 x 340 and the 42mm (1.65in)  have a 312 x 390 display. When adding in the six different metal colours, stainless steel, silver aluminium, space black stainless steel, space grey aluminium, 18-carat yellow gold and 18-carat rose gold this takes the choice to 35 different models.
 
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One of the most popular remarks an Apple user would make to defend their use of a device over Android, Windows or some-such is that it just works. That’s what everyone wants. No lag when opening the camera, no errors about compatibility and no resets to get things going again. Apple has a better track record for success from users. However, they have taken the Apple Watch to the deep end and packed in so many features that I am certain many users will feel a little overwhelmed by the whole thing. Some features you will either never touch or only use to show off. An Android Wear device is, essentially, a second screen for your notification panel. The Apple Watch seems to want to become the focus of your attention and help you resist the urge to pull you phone to do something, no matter how complex.
 
I am sure that Android Wear will encompass many of the features Apple have demonstrated over time, for right now whilst in it’s infancy, the idea of cramming in as much as you can may not be the best approach. Smartphones were around before the iPhone made them popular, Windows Mobile and Palm devices were popular, however they did scare many away as they were complex, if a little unfriendly. Both Google and Apple took the smartphone and broke it down into simple to use, basic features and built on it. The Apple Watch feels like it might be a forth generation product.
 
Apple-Pay-title
 
The Apple Watch has a huge features list and that is an attraction to a number of gadget gurus out there. This will appeal to many, including most of the readership of this site. The mass market might only end up using the device a little more than a way to avoid annoying telemarketing calls and PPI reclamation offers. The idea of the paying for goods and services is barely a blip on the radar when smartphones are concerned, doing this from your smartwatch is going to be completely alien to the mass majority. As a glimpse of the future this is a great idea however, paying for the technology now is a bit of a waste. You currently cannot purchase this from your local Apple shop using Apple pay here is the UK.
 
apple-watch-battery
 
 
The battery on the Apple Watch will last a day, 18 hours Apple claims. This really isn’t stellar compared to recent Android Wear devices, however there will be much room for improvement. With charger looks beautiful and easy to operate. I am glad Apple have taken the time to develop a neat solution with the magnetic inductive wireless charger. I don’t think many folks would have guessed an existing standard would be used here however this is Apple and they are a law unto themselves.
 
I do feel I have been overly negative of the Apple Watch when I am a big fan of wearable technology. There is a lot to love here, with changeable bands, water resistance etc… As I said before Android Wear is like a second screen for your notifications panel. That helps you decide it is is worth your while to dig your phone out of your pocket and that is what most people will use a smartwatch for. Paying the money Apple are asking will probably leave a bit of a bad taste in their mouths after a month or so.
 
Join the debate on Thursday night at 20:30 on the Mobile Tech Addicts Show. Gareth, Matt, Dan, Jay and Micael get together to see if Apple have knocked it out of the park or is this another Newton.
 
 
Posted in: Editorial, Gadgets, News, Wearables
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