Author Archives: Chavis
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IDC: Tablet market in 2013 was doing great, but growth is slowing down

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Tablet shipments have been on the rise in 2013, but that shouldn’t surprise anybody. IDC analysts tell us that a total of 217.1 million units were shipped in 2013, which represents a 50.6% YoY growth rate.

Unfortunately, though, the mature markets are already pretty saturated and there is lots of competition so the rate of growth is slowing down. The growth in 2012 over 2011 was a good 87.1%.

Manufacturers are turning their attention to developing markets however high-margin products such as Apple iPads are not doing that well in these regions. Read more »

The Sony Xperia E1 and E1 Dual promo videos are out

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Sony has just announced the Xperia E1 plus its E1 Dual sibling, which adds Dual SIM support to the feature mix. The company has already posted the first promo videos of the two smartphones online.

The promo videos make a point about the incredibly loud loudspeaker, the instant music player access via a dedicated Walkman button, music shake control and claim the Xperia E1/E1 Dual are the best smartphones in their class (that is, smartphones with a launch price of less than 175 euro).
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iOS 7.1 beta 3 still hasn’t patched evasi0n7 jailbreak exploit, brings along other changes

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Apple is now seeding iOS beta 3 to developers. The good news is that the latest update still doesn’t patch the exploit used by the recent evasi0n7 jailbreak.

Apple has been pretty strict about jailbreaking and even though it’s legal (in the US at least), it’s frowned upon by the company and they use every opportunity they get to close any exploits that the jailbreakers find as soon as possible. Read more »

Sony introduces the A5000, dubbed the world’s lightest interchangeable lens APS-C camera

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The highly popular NEX lineup of cameras just got a new member. Oh, and they are no longer called NEX cameras, alright? Despite the naming convention change, the Sony A5000 is the pinnacle of what we came to know and love as Sony’s NEX lineup of interchangeable lens cameras.

The new Sony A5000 has a 20MP APS-C sensor, Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity, a flippable 3″ 460K-dot LCD, a built-in pop-up flash as opposed to a pop-on accessory, and a zoom control built into the body to control power zoom lenses. It also weighs merely 269g for the body with a battery, adding for a surprisingly compact and powerful camera package. Read more »

Nikon announces the D3300 DSLR and teases the unannounced D4S

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Nikon had a slew of announcements at the CES 2014 – first and foremost, it’s the brand new D3300 DSLR, but also the company revealed it would show their yet unannounced D4S DSLR in Las Vegas.

Along with the D3300, Nikon also announced its new collapsible 18-55 VR kit lens and the full-frame version (FX) of the 35mm 1.8G lens, which has so far been available only for APS-C Nikon cameras. Read more »

Samsung announces the 2014 editions of the Samsung Ativ One 7 and the Ativ Book 9

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The Ativ One 7 2014 Edition is a sleek All-in-One PC with a 24-inch FullHD screen. The Book 9 2014 Edition is a spectacular ultrabook, which has a 15.6-inch FullHD screen and which yet weighs only 1.85 kg.

The Ativ One 7 2014 Edition can act as a secure personal cloud server, allowing owners of Samsung Galaxy smartphones and tablets to store on the computer hard drive photos, movies, music and documents via Samsung Link mobile app. These users also have the option of wirelessly streaming music to the Ativ One 7′s Dolby Home Theater certified stereo 7W speakers via Bluetooth even when the computer is off. Read more »

Google Search update for Android brings some KitKat goodness to older smartphones

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Another thing that came along the Motorola Moto G announcement yesterday is the update to the Google Search app for Android. The latest version of Google Search is now available on the Google Play Store. The update brings to Android smartphones all the latest developments of Google Search, including prettier search results and a smarter Google Now. Of course, Google Now, as before, is only available to devices running Android 4.1 and above.

The new version of Google Search will allow you to have short dialogues with Google Now when you are conducting searches. In these dialogues, Google Now should be able to understand when you referring to your search term by an indirect pronoun instead of using the full name. It will also answer back when there are several options for action. Read more »

Watch Apple’s October 2013 keynote here

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Today’s Apple keynote marked the announcement of the release of the free Mac OS X Maverics, the release of the updated and now free iWorks and iLife application packages, the announcement of the hardware updates to the MacBook Pro lineup and the availability and specs info about the Mac Pro. Last but not least, we saw the announcement of the iPad Air and the Retina update to the iPad mini.

All this fit into less than an hour and a half so you can be sure the pace was hectic. But you don’t have to take my word for it. If you missed the live streaming of the event, now is your chance to watch a replay. Read more »

Apple iPad Air video ad is up online

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Apple has just announced their latest iPad and as rumored, it comes with a new chassis with smaller bezels and slimmer and lighter overall design. To go with the new design, Apple also announced a new name – it’s none other than the iPad Air. Sadly, despite heated rumors, the iPad Air doesn’t have the TouchID fingerprint sensor or board.

As you can imagine, Apple’s got a nice and long 3-minute video ad for the new iPad Air and it’s worth watching. Read more »

Nokia’s Refocus camera app would professionally defocus any of your Lumia shots

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Today at the Nokia World 2013 held in Abu Dhabi, Nokia announced their new Refocus camera app for the Lumia 1520. Refocus promises users the freedom to selectively change the area of the photo, which is in focus.

The Nokia Refocus is a separate camera app for Lumia phones (unlike what we first heard). The camera app aims to reproduce the shallow depth of field that pro cameras have and it does that in a really high-quality way. Details about how it works are scarce at the moment so we are not quite sure whether it snaps a series of images and stacks them into an image, where you can dynamically manipulate the active focus point or if it maps out the depth of the image and subsequently creates the lens blur purely artificially but in a nice looking way. Read more »

Apple to make their 700 millionth device sale by the end of the month

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Fresh off Apple’s iPhone unveiling event in California, Craig Federighi, Apple’s Senior VP and iOS development leader, announced that Apple expects to reach another sales milestone this month.

According to him, they expect to make their 700 millionth devices all-time sale by the and of September 2013. Read more »

The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Multi Vision is an awesome new feature you would probably never use

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The features that Samsung has baked into the TouchWiz user interface on the Galaxy Note 3 are so many that the company has issued a 16-minute official hands-on video just so they can go over the key ones. However, on that video there is one really innovative feature missing. And it’s awesome – that’s Multi Vision.

Multi Vision on the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 allows you to stack up several devices and get a bigger resulting screen area for your content. But really? It’s sounds way cooler than it’s useful, because… you know… who has four of these just lying around? Read more »

HTC BoomBass is a portable Bluetooth subwoofer looking to add some bass to your flimsy phone speakers

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Along with the HTC Desire 601 and Desire 300 today, HTC also introduced a curious Bluetooth accessory, called HTC BoomBass. Now, portable Bluetooth speakers come a dime a dozen but this one is not a full-range speaker. Instead, it’s only a subwoofer, designed to amplify the bass sounds only.

The tiny subwoofer measures 64 x 64 x 64mm and HTC says it’s a great match for its range of smartphones, which have a set of already great sounding stereo speakers (BoomSound), but lack the punch you only get from proper bass. Current smartphones, featuring the said dual speakers setup are the HTC one, the HTC Desire 600 dual sim and even the just announced HTC Desire 601. Read more »

The Amazon Kindle Fire HD 2013 to have some impressive specs, leak reveals

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The tablet competition is as heated as ever. While Samsung is seemingly taking a break from the race by serving us with a less than competitive recent batch of tablets, we are eagerly looking around to see what the competition will have on offer in the second half of 2013. Amazon still hasn’t announced its bid but we are already seeing reports that the company’s next gen tablets will make use of some powerful hardware.

According to a report, based entirely on industry sources and eye-witness accounts, the next generation of Kindles will include three devices in three different tiers. The highest tier – the Kindle Fire HD 8.9 – will sport the impressive 2560 x 1600 pixel resolution (up from 1920 x 1200 px) and a quad-core Snapdragon 800 chipset. Read more »

Nokia reveals the Lumia 1020 premium leather case, classic meets classy

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Leather is certainly not your everyday choice for cellphone cases, but given the Nokia Lumia 1020 photographic background, Nokia has obviously thought it’s only natural that they pair the cameraphone with a classic-looking leather case.

While Nokia’s camera grip is certainly a mouth-watering accessory to have for a capable cameraphone, when it comes to classiness, this leather case is in a league of its own. Read more »