Thursday, June 27, 2013

True Android fans are those that believe in and love the pure Android experience, the one without any custom bootlauncher or bloatware, that OEMs incorporate on top of core Android OS nowadays to try and ensure that their devices stand out when compared to the competition. To cater to this needs of Android purists in the top end smartphones of today, Google promised pure Android experience based HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4 more then a month ago and today they have fulfilled the promise.

These two Google edition pieces are sure to attract a fair amount of customers who aren't ready to live with the limitations of Nexus 4 but considering the difference in price (almost half for Nexus 4), it is safe to assume that these new Google babies won't cannibalize the sale of their brother.

Samsung Galaxy S4 is available on the play store for 649$ while HTC One goes for 50 bucks cheaper at 599$. Both the devices will be armed with pure Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean OS and are scheduled to deliver on or after 9 July to those who order it.

Google Edition Samsung Galaxy S4
Google Edition HTC One
Read More

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Huawei's Smartphone launch: The World's slimmest

Over the years, the smartphone companies have tried to make their smartphones slimmer and slimmer. And now comes the 'Ascend P6' which is the world's slimmest smartphone till date. HUAWEI Ascend P6, the world's slimmest smartphone measuring just 6.18 mm has been unveiled by Huawei, a leading global information and communications technology (ICT) service provider. The company launched the phone on 6/18 (June 18). Isn't it similar to the smartphone's dimensions?!!!! The smartphone's brushed metallic look with a naturally curved base makes it look very elegant. It has a complete balance of fashionable features and user-friendly functions.

It features a 1.5GHz quad-core processor, Android 4.2.2 operating system. 2000mAh battery and a 4.7 inch HD in-cell LCD technology. It has a 8MP rear camera and 5 MP front camera. Its camera with F2.0 aperture and 4 cm macro view also enables 1080P full HD video recording and playback. Moreover, it weighs just about 120g. It also feature 'Magic Touch' for enhanced sreen responsiveness even when wearing gloves.

Huawei's unique Automated Discontinuous Reception (ADRX) and Quick Power Control (QPC) battery optimization and power saving technology improves performance by more than 30%, compared with smartphone batteries of equal size.

The HUAWEI Ascend P6 is available in black, white and pink with matching color cases. It will begin shipping to China from June and to Western Europe from July.

It will be interesting to see at what price it is introduced in India and when!!!!!

Key Specifications at a glance :-
  • 1.5GHz Quad-core processor
  • Android OS v4.2.2 (Jelly Bean)
  • 4.7" 720p Display
  • Camera- Primary 8MP and Secondary 5MP
  • 2GB RAM
  • Internal Memory 8GB
  • Weight 120g

A guest post by Saksham Jain of

Also read:

Mid-Range Smartphones to buy

Read More

Apple starts seeding iOS 7 Beta 2 for developers

Apple announced iOS 7 couple of weeks at its WWDC 2013. After the announcement, everyone in the tech world agreed to the fact that it is the biggest update to iOS since its birth and even Tim Cook said that. The same day Apple also gave access to its first beta release to the developers.

The developers have fiddled around with the first beta release since then and have found out bugs lying here and there. But they have also enjoyed the usage and availability of some cool new APIs as well as functionality. To greet them with even more joy, Apple has started seeding second beta release of iOS 7 from today.

As given in the changelog, this beta release does not contain much more then some fixes and performance improvements. According to our usage, iOS 7 feels much more snappier now but still there are some bugs that haven't been fixed yet. I am sure Apple is working on them but for now Beta 1 users will be available to spot some bugs that they were fighting for half a month now. But the bigger change is iOS 7 support for iPad and iPad Mini developers - they can now install iOS 7 Beta on their iDevice.

While Beta releases have always been available only to developers (which requires a 99$ / year paid account), you can click here to find out how to install iOS 7 Beta on your iDevice.
Read More

Friday, June 21, 2013

Conferencing using various internet tools over large distances is becoming very common these days and with the increase of smartphones in the total equation, sharing screen of a mobile device sometimes becomes a necessity rather than a privilege. In case of Android, VNC is present to make life easier but in case of iOS only screensplitr is known to do the task successfully but it requires your iDevice to be jailbroken. But if you do not want a solution that relies on Jailbreak for it to work, there hasn't been a real solution around until now. Now a solution has emerged.

Lets see how to get your iDevice screen on to your Windows / Mac PC with the help of this tool.

Step 1: The application to be used for this purpose is iTools. Go to their website and download the free tool which is available for both Windows (works on Windows 8 normally even though they do not mention that in their compatibility section) and Mac.

Step 2: The file downloaded will be a zip file. Unzip it and go to through the sub-folders to reach iTools.exe. In case of Mac, double click the .dmg file and when Mac asks, copy the file to the Applications folder of your Mac and install that.

Step 3: Now open this iTools.exe to open the iTools application that lets you go through with the task of sharing of iDevice screen with your Mac / Windows PC.

Then connect your iDevice and it will change "Please insert.." in left pane to "Device connecting".

As soon as it will connect to your iDevice, the first thing it will display is your iDevice's details along with its serial number and if it is jailbroken or not.

Step 4: Now in the left pane click on "Desktop" option and it will display the homescreen of your iDevice.

Now click on "Live Desktop" option present in top bar of the application besides the "Icons" option. It will take some time to start the streaming process. After the process is completed, it will start streaming your iPhone's screen in real-time on to your Windows / Mac PC. And Et voila!

Read More

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

iOS 7 is announced. Coming this fall.

We have been waiting for this for so long now, especially ever since Apple announced the WWDC 2013. Today Apple has announced the latest iOS 7 for its squad of iDevices during the KeyNote speech of its WWDC (Word Wide Developer's Conference) and it looks like they have been very busy during the last year revamping the whole iOS platform.

New Flat UI

As it turns out, the rumours about the new Flat UI were true. The presence of Sir Johny Ive's mind at work is surely here and now all the icons as well as different OS components have been given a much more flatter look rather than the 3D one of the 6 previous generations which may even give a Symbian-type feel to some at first look. All the designing now gives it a much more unified  look and now animated wallpapers make an appearance as well. They are not similar to Live wallpapers present on Android devices but certainly better then a static one. Also, instead of bars to represent the presence of network, now iOS will use dots whose color will range from grey to white depending on the presence of network.

Also, gone are the days of slider bar saying "slide to unlock" and all that is present now is a translucent "slide to unlock" message present on the lockscreen.

Better Multitasking

Multi-tasking was first introduced one iDevices back in 2010 with iOS 4 but it wasn't a true multi-tasking system and thus it lacked the functionality many craved for and could find in rival Android smartphones. Apple has tried to solve this issue with iOS 7.

It now has a new card-based system which reminds you of webOS type multi-tasking where each application is seen as a card on the screen. It also now incorporates new smart features to help the device update various applications in the background without becoming a battery hound. iOS 7 now keeps track when you use a specific app (all day or just in the morning or the evening) and lets the app update during that period. It also uses "opportunistic updates" to carry on the updating process. When you wake the device, it's going to use power anyway so iOS lets any available app update run in the background and similarly it also keeps track of signal quality and if it's good, it updates multiple apps at once since the radio is powered on anyway.

Better Notification Center

Notification Center was one of the main attraction points of iOS 5, a couple of years back, and it has been a good update but this time it has been built from the ground up to incorporate the same flat look as other components of the operating system sports. Also, ability to see the notification center at the lockscreen has also been introduced.

Control Center

Apple has finally heard to a long-time demand of its users, the toggles. It has introduced a new Control Center which can be accessed by swiping from down to upwards and houses all the different toggles (as shown in the image). Apart from the toggles, it also has music and screen brightness controls. It also now incorporates the torch thing and thus eliminates the need of downloading a dedicated app for the purpose.


AirDrop is Apple's answer to NFC and Samsung's SmartShare (Apple executives even made a joke about bumping devices together for sharing). It works on the P2P (peer-to-peer) sharing principle and uses wi-fi as a medium. It can work when the person we want to send the images and files is close by. This is the first time Apple is bringing native file sharing support of any sorts and this will be only supported by devices released in 2012 and onwards because of the hardware restrictions.

Smarter Siri

The whole flat concept of UI has come to our very own siri as well which means no more linen. The voices in English, German and French are much smoother (for both male and female) then before and now it can even control toggles like Bluetooth. It, now, also has the power to control screen brightness and it can now be used to search Twitter, Bing and Wikipedia (apart from already present Google Search). It also has a card-based UI in play which indicates a head-to-head competition with Google Now from the Cupertino giants.

New Camera and Gallery

As part of the major redesign and update iOS 7 is, the built-in camera and gallery apps have received huge changes. It is not a plane jane camera app anymore and now come with options to snap pictures in squares or Instagram style aspect ratios and you can even add filters to the photo. There is a graphical change at play here too (which can be seen in the image above).

The gallery has received a new feature which Apple is calling "moments". As soon as you are done shooting, it arranges photographs based on when and where you took them and organizes them under meaningfully given names. Also, Zooming out now generates albums for multi-day trips and further zooming out generates photos grouped by the year they were taken in. It also has AirDrop sharing built right in and iCloud sharing through photo streams has been improved as well. It has received a visual overhaul as well to match the overall look of iOS 7.

Updates to Safari and App Store

Apple's Safari browser for iDevices has received some major changes as well. First of all, the tab switching UI has been changed to a 3D card-based one and now you are no longer limited to only 8 tabs. Secondly, two separate bars are now gone and there is only one smart bar which can be used for searching as well (much like in Google Chrome). A new gesture based feature has also been introduced which allows to go back and forth through your browsing history using horizontal end-to-end swipes. Safari also supports a new feature known as iCloud Keychain which is used to sync passwords and credit card information across devices.

The App Store has received a new feature which lets you get application recommendations based on your geographical location.

Wait! There's more

Apart from video calling, you can now do audio-only calls using FaceTime VoIP service. Moreover, iOS now adds native support for phone, FaceTime and message blocking - something everyone was desperately asking and its biggest competitor, Android, has.

The music player UI has been revamped as well to match the whole iOS 7 look and a new feature, iTunes radio has been added as well.

It is an ad-based music streaming service which is Apple's answer to various music streaming services and works in a very similar way as Pandora does. It is an ad-based service but iTunes match subscribers can use it ad-free. It will be available in US only for now but the reach will expand as time passes by.

Weather application is one of those native iOS apps that have received a major UI and functionality overhaul. It now displays weathers of multiple cities with beautiful weather based animations running in the background and detailed forecast of current date and 5 upcoming days. You can also check out the weather information of more than one city at once.

Apple has also released a promo video for their new and one of the biggest iOS updates till date. Lets have a look at it.

Although Apple has not resorted to using the cheesy marketing lines like "biggest thing to happen to iOS since iOS" but if they would have used this time, no one could have denied it. Sir Johny Ive's presence can easily be seen in the update which is the biggest overhaul to iOS till date.

iOS 7 will be available for consumers on iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod Touch 5th gen, iPad 2, iPad 3, iPad 4 and iPad Mini this fall and iOS developers can have a go at it from today only.
Read More