Categories
mobile news

iPad Air being called the tablet “reborn”

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3-57614834-37/the-ipad-air-one-month-in-a-tote-worthy-tablet/

 

It’s only been about a month since the iPad Air has been on the market and already it’s being proclaimed as a reborn Apple tablet made easier for the users.  Interesting notes about why some people didn’t like the former iPad 3 and iPad 4 ranged from bulkiness, inability to support the at the time new Retina displays.  But the new iPad Air seems to have eliminated many of those problems. While it is bigger than the iPad Mini, the reviewer in this article makes a note to say that it for her seems more portable and is easier for her to do critical work on.

While I personally prefer Android based gadgets over Apple, the comparisons between this and other devices like a Nexus tablet were interesting food for thought for what to put on my Christmas/Birthday list.

Categories
mobile news

CEO of Nvidia Continues to Invest in Shield…..and no I’m not talking about the Avengers!

http://news.cnet.com/8301-1035_3-57611419-94/nvidia-ceo-we-intend-to-keep-investing-in-shield/

Shield is a mobile Android gaming device that Nvidia has invested in, and in an announcement on Thursday he announced that they were going to continue a long term investment with Shield that would produce more mobile Android based games.  In his own words, they have “modest expectations after a modest investment.”in lieu of directly stating how well Shield had sold.

 

Categories
mobile news

Apple launching Arizona based manufacturing plant

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3-57610796-37/apple-to-build-made-in-the-usa-manufacturing-plant-in-arizona/

Apple announced today that it will be creating a new manufacturing plan based in Arizona.  The plant will have the goal of running solely on renewable energy.  It will provide a net total of approximately 200 jobs, ranging from engineering to construction.  Apple also has plans to build a new plant in Texas.  It has not been revealed yet which of Apple’s devices will be the main product for this plant; however the Texas plant will be the home of development of Apple’s new Mac Pro.

Categories
mobile news

Halloween costume troubles? Use your smartphone!

http://reviews.cnet.com/8301-19512_7-57606726-233/put-your-smartphone-at-the-center-of-a-horror-tastic-halloween-costume/

NASA engineer Mark Rober founded a company called Digital Dudz.  The purpose was to incorporate smartphones into Halloween costumes as well as regular outfits.  Customers download the free app, place the phone in a special pocket of a shirt, and it gives part of the shirt an awesome effect.  Currently there are 6 shirts available ranging from a moving eyeball to kitty eyes.  The shirt itself is $30 while the app remains free.  This could be a good idea especially for the college student market as full costumes usually cost more; and with this shirt there’s less risk of losing one’s phone during a party.

Categories
mobile news

6 Smartphone trends that crashed and burned

http://reviews.cnet.com/2300-6452_7-10017181.html

 

This article discuss 6 recent trends (or attempts thereof) in smartphones that for one reason or another failed hard.  The first three deal with the interface screen itself, making the screen unreadable, smaller to the point of making dialing a number impossible, and adding a second screen (two screens is good for a Game Boy, not a phone).  Other trends that failed were: a 3D phone, a phone that would put Facebook above everything else in the phone, built-in kickstands, and using Evo over LTE.  Reading over all these failed trends, I see why these failed as they’re impractical and just plain ridiculous.  However these failures helped build a platform for the successes that are present in our mobile technology now.

Categories
mobile news usability

BlackBerry suffers a $965 million loss as well as 45% drop in sales

http://news.cnet.com/8301-1035_3-57604929-94/blackberry-confirms-loss-of-$965-million-as-sales-drop-45/

One week after announcing that BlackBerry would be laying off about 40% of it’s current staff, the company revealed that their second-quarter loss was $965 million.  The biggest factor in this loss was the failure of the BlackBerryZ10(the first phone to run the BlackBerry 10 OS).  Newer BlackBerrys aren’t being purchased as frequently as the old ones, 3.7 billion phones were shipped with a majority of them being devices running old software(popular for the low price).  Because of this, BlackBerry will shift focus to serving businesses with products and back-end systems.

Categories
mobile news

Who offers better early upgrades? This round: Sprint vs T-Mobile!

http://news.cnet.com/8301-1035_3-57604651-94/t-mobile-vs-sprint-who-offers-a-better-early-upgrade/

With T-Mobile and Sprint being the 3rd and 4th national cell phone carriers, it’s easy to see why these two are trying to offer the best early upgrade deal.  Catchy commercials aside, there’s other things that must be considered; such as the cost to join an early upgrade program, if it’s limited to a certain type of phone, is it even worth it for the customer.  While AT&T and Verizon have already implemented such a program, T-Mobile and Sprint are vieing for the cheapest price to the customer while still making a profit in hopes of gaining new customers.

 

 

Categories
Android iOS mobile news

Pandora fixes iPad app at the same time as iTunes Radio fixes theirs

http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57603430-93/pandora-redesigns-ipad-app-as-itunes-radio-rolls-out/

Pandora is making major changes to its iPad app for the first time since the app was released (April 2010).  The biggest change is a new social media sharing option to facebook and twitter, as well as being able to create a socially accessible ‘timeline’ of everything a user has listened to.  In addition to the technical changes, Pandora has changed its app to aesthetically match the look of iOs7.   The social sharing update and new Pandora will be released for Android later in the fall, letting all 200 million of their subscribers have access to the update.  Currently Pandora accounts for 7% of all US radio listening.

Categories
mobile news

The new iPhone’s fingerprint sensor could spur the death of the type-in Password

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-24021072

While many PCs and laptops already have fingerprint scanners to gain entry, as well as some business, Apple’s new iPhone touch ID sensor could signal the beginning of the end for passwords.  Usually on an iPhone or Android smartphone, a user needs to type in a passcode or draw a pattern to gain access to the phone’s contents.  However this improvement in biometrics marks a turning point.  But that doesn’t mean consumers should throw out their password files (and to be honest sometimes it’s a pain to memorize so many passwords for accounts), there are still drawbacks and risks being worked out.  These range from general failure to recognize the owner, to weather affecting a users fingerprint(rain, extreme dryness, etc), as well as cryptographers developing ways to ‘spoof’ a fingerprint.  Still with these drawbacks, many companies are working to increase the use of biometric scanning such as a fingerprint or retina for mobile devices.

Categories
mobile news

Apple making strides to form alliance with China Mobile.

http://money.cnn.com/2013/09/11/technology/apple-iphone-china/index.html

 

Apple has completed the last requirements for China Mobile (China’s largest mobile network) to allow Apple iPhones to be used by their customers.  Apple was also approved to have their devices on two of China’s other mobile networks, China Unicom and China Telecom.  This boost would add approximately 700 million new subscribers to Apple’s services which is important because currently Apple only controls 5% of smartphone users in China.  In addition to adding China Mobile’s subscribers, Apple also hopes to add more physical stores in the country (currently there are only 11 physical stores).