Category Archives: Technology

SAMSUNG Z1 FIRST TIZEN PHONE TO BE LAUNCHED JANUARY 2015

Samsung Mobile Inc. seems to be finally set to announce its first Tizen phone(long overdue if you ask me).  According to a report in the Korea Economic Daily, a Samsung official firmly said that the tech giant will release its first Tizen phone in January, 2015. This device will be a low-end smartphone and will cost less than $90.  Here is an excerpt from the original report:
“We decided to release the Tizen phone in India on January 18, 2015. The price of the phone is set at less than 100,000 won ($90)”

Now, we are all sure that this launch will indeed take place, courtesy of leaked images of the phone! Yes, we have real pictures of the phone and its specs, thanks to Manish Khatri of Mahesh Telecoms, India. He attended a meeting where retailers were summoned by Samsung to have a look at this new product, and that’s where he took these pictures of the expected Samsung Z1. Enjoy!

The body
Samsung Z1 image
UI of the Samsung Z1
Samsung Z1
Contact UI
Samsung Z1 contact UI
Samsung-Z1 specs

There goes the specs of Tizen Os first mobile phone.

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Microsoft Lumia 940 rumoured to posses 24mp Pureview Camera, 3gb Ram, Windows 10.

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The device is said to feature a 5inch display screen that will support a full HD resolution. It is rumored that the upcoming Lumia 940 will be well equipped with Corning Gorilla Glass 4 for screen protection.

The Microsoft Lumia 940 will have a quad-core Snapdragon 805 SoC processor clocked at a speed of 2.7GHz along with Adreno 420 graphics and 3GB of RAM.

A feature that many users will cherish is the camera, which will be a 24mp rear camera with PureView and it will support 4K video shooting at 60FPS.

The device will also feature a 5mp secondary camera and will also support HD video recording.

The Lumia 940 is 8.9m thick, it measures around 131x71mm and it weight is set at 149grams.  The new camera feature that will come on Lumia 940 will be much more compact.  

Microsoft may most likely opt for the same design that Lumia 930 has to the upcoming Lumia 940.

Lumia 940 will be encompassed with NFC, Wi-Fi, USB 3.0, and Bluetooth and will come with an internal memory of 32GB, 64GB and 128GB variants.

As for the operating system, it seems that Lumia 940 will not come with the Windows 8.1 which is currently the latest Windows Phone operating system out there. The Lumia 940 will operate on a new and yet legally unannounced Windows Phone 10 OS.

Microsoft Lumia 940 will most likely not be launched very soon as Microsoft is currently busy launching some other devices such as the Lumia 535 and Lumia 1330.

Download Android 5.0 Lollipop Gapps

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Since the day the Android 5.0 Lollipop source code was uploaded. Many  Android 5.0 based ROMs are surfacing through out the developer forums . Since these are built from pure AOSP source code, they come without the Google services and you have to get a Gapps package to fill this abyss. But the haunting thing is there is no proper Gapps package for the 5.0 ROMs which takes the fun out of these builds.

However, with time there comes a workaround for everything and this time it comes from drewwalton19216801 of XDA forums. A complete Gapps package would usually be around 200-300 MB depending on the number of Google apps and services included in the package. Looking at the size of drewwalton19216801’s Gapps package which is roughly around 117 MB, we can say that it is just a pack of bare bones. You can take a look at the services included from the list below:

Google Now
Setup Wizard
Gmail
Cloud Print
Google Calendar
Google Now Home
Play Store
Google Plus
Base required Google Services

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Leaving aside the small number of apps included in the package, we can say that this is the only Gapps that was successfully installed on Android 5.0 AOSP builds as of now. Anyway, it’s no crime in getting our hands dirty in the world of Android tinkering. So buckle up and download the Gapps package from the link provided below.

Download Gapps for Android 5.0 Lollipop.

BlackBerry CEO: John Chen meets with Lenovo, HTC, Xaomi Top Men

BlackBerry CEO John Chen has noted several times already that the next step in his plan for BlackBerry is to grow the company and one place where he sees opportunity, due to the demand for security, encryption and privacy is in China.

Attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation CEO Summit in Beijing, John Chen sat down with Xiaomi’s CEO Lei Jun, and Lenovo’s head Yang Yuanqing along with Cher Wang, chairwoman of Taoyuan, Taiwan-based HTC Corp. Speaking in an interview after the summit, Chen provided more information.APEC CEO SUMMIT

It does seem that a more efficient way is to have a good partner to be here,” Chen said in the interview. “I’m here this time to look at what opportunities there may be. We have not really focused on this market. It’s a huge market but it’s a very highly competitive market too.

Fully aware of the rumors his comments might start, Chen was quick to note that he wasn’t there looking for a sale of BlackBerry but instead exploring the opportunities for agreements on technology licensing, distribution or manufacturing. “I’m not looking to sell the company,” Chen said. “I’m very much looking to operate the company as an independent company.”

“What I’m doing is to explore what is the right approach to the market given what we do well and I’m not shutting any doors,” Chen said. “This market is not an easy one to get deals done quickly. It’s going to take a while, but I’m interested.”

Despite John Chen’s cautionary comments, BBRY stock is on the rise today based on the information.

Android 5.0 Lollipop: What’s New and Updated

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Android Lollipop

Google previewed ‘Android L’ at its Google I/O developer event in June, and since then, developers and consumers have awaited the final version, which was finally announced on Wednesday as Android 5.0 Lollipop ‘L’.
The company also launched the platform
lead devices for Android 5.0 Lollipop, namely the Nexus 6 ,Nexus 9, and Nexus Player.
Since the Android L preview earlier this year, Google has added several new features to the final release of Android 5.0 Lollipop.
While some changes are extensions of the themes introduced in Android L, some are relatively new, and other previously known features have now been detailed by the search giant.

Here are some of the biggest changes that Google brought to its widely-popular mobile and tablet platform with Android 5.0 Lollipop:

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Material Design
First up is the ambitious Material Design. Remember when Google had introduced Android L saying that this next version will receive a complete visual overhaul for a consistent experience across devices? Well, here it is. Android 5.0 Lollipop features a cleaner, flatter design with a more fluid interface and animations.
We saw the revamped navigation and status bar in the Android L preview, and Google has stuck to the design but now the status bar can be coloured or kept transparent (depending on the
app) and features refreshed status icons. The ‘Quick settings’ menu has also been revamped, and includes new controls like
flashlight, hotspot, cast screen controls and more. Also new is the toggle for location services. The recent apps menu or task switcher now appears like a stack of cards instead of a list of screenshots of recently open apps which is cool.
Google explains the new Material Design for Android 5.0 Lollipop as “A bold, colorful, and responsive UI design for consistent, intuitive experiences across all your devices.
Responsive, natural motion, realistic lighting and shadows, and familiar visual elements make it easier to navigate your device.

Vivid new colors, typography, and edge-to-edge imagery help to focus your attention.”

Improved Notifications/ Lock Screen
Android 5.0 Lollipop’s lock screen displays richer notifications, and users can view and respond to messages directly from the
lock screen. In fact, Google has further gone ahead with notifications and included rich floating descriptive notifications on top of your activity. Users will be able to view or dismiss any
notifications without moving away from an activity.
Essentially, Google has provided better overall control for Notifications.

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Users will be able to control notifications triggered by their apps, and choose to hide sensitive content, apart from prioritising or turning off an app’s notifications completely. Android 5.0 Lollipop users can also turn on ‘Priority mode’ via the device’s volume button and allow notifications from only certain people or apps to be shown – users can schedule when Priority mode turns on as
well. The feature also works as a Do Not Disturb mode as seen in Apple’s iOS, and allows users to also selectively silence notifications and calls on the Android device.
Importantly, Google has also now downgraded the priority that incoming phone calls are given, and users can now choose to answer the call, cancel it, or just continue to do what they were doing without waiting for the call to end.

Kill Switch and Improved Security
Android 5.0 Lollipop will come with an opt-in kill switch dubbed ‘Factory Reset Protection’, which will allow users to wipe out the device’s data on will. If a user activates this feature, they will be
required to enter their Google login to factory reset the device and it will only work when the phone passcode is enabled. Google
also says that new devices come with encryption automatically turned on to help protect data on lost or stolen devices. Google
had announced the feature last month, after Apple revealed its own version . Not much is known about this feature yet rest assured we will update you as it comes…
Users will also get an Android Smart Lock feature to secure their device by pairing it with a trusted device like a wearable or even their car, says Google.

New Messenger App
There is a new Messenger app that will be shipping with the Nexus 6 as part of Android 5.0 Lollipop It is said to be a more simplified of Hangouts, and is not a replacement for it, says a Google spokesperson, “Messenger and Hangouts offer users choice, each have their own benefits. Hangouts work great for cross platform (web, iOS, Android) and cross medium communications (video, voice,messaging, SMS).  Messenger will be specially designed to be a quick and easy way to send and receive SMS and MMS messages on Android Nexus 6 will come with both apps.

Device Sharing
Google has finally brought device sharing features that will help users share their Android 5.0 Lollipop device with members of their family and friends without worrying about access to sensitive content. Android 5.0 Lollipop features a guest user mode with custom options for access, as well as screen pinning that lets users fix in place the screen that’s displayed without allowing guests to go further. Interestingly, it has also introduced a new feature in Android L that lets users log in to another Android phone to access synced messages and content in case they forget their phone at home.
Battery Saver
Google has also added a new battery saver feature to Android 5.0 Lollipop, claiming to extend device battery life by up to 90 minutes. Android 5.0 Lollipop will also display the estimated time left to fully charge the device when plugged in, as well as the estimated time left on the device before the user needs to charge again.

Quick Device Set Up
Google has introduced new ways for users to set up their devices with Android 5.0 Lollipop. Users can instantly set up their new Android phone or tablet by simply tapping it on their old device – though this requires NFC support. All apps from Google Play are also carried over on the new device, as long as the same Google account is being used.
Other new features in Android 5.0 Lollipop include the new ART Android runtime for improved application performance and responsiveness; support for 64-bit devices and SoCs; native 64-bit apps; improved hardware keyboard accessory support (including support for multilingual, emoji input, search key, and improved app and system key chords), support for 15 new languages (including Bengali, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Tamil and Telugu); improved accessibility features (such as text contrast boost, colour inversion, and enhanced colour differentiation); improved audio, video, and camera capabilities, and improved Internet connectivity everywhere and with more powerful Bluetooth low energy

Keyboard
The keyboard app for Android L is stylish and colourful than it predecessor. Awesome swiping, improved personalized typing, improved dictionary and material design .  Good thing developers on XDA already ported it and it can work on devices running Android 4.1+ .Get yours here

Sony launches “Xperia Transfer Mobile” app for Windows Phones

Sony Mobile wants to make it as easy as possible for owners of smartphones from other Android manufacturers or different OS’ to switch to an Xperia device. To that end, Sony has recently released a dedicated “Xperia Transfer Mobile” app on the Windows Phone Store to help those on the platform to migrate to an Android-equipped Xperia handset.

The app will help you to transfer contacts, message, calendar and media to a new Sony Xperia. Sony already provides methods to transfer from an iPhone or Blackberry. There were a number of rumours earlier in the year that Sony was planning to launch its own Windows Phone device, but with no news in the last few months it looks like those plans are dead in the water, at least for now.

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‘Silver’ enables developers to use Swift to write Android and Windows Phone apps

RemObjects is using its experience with compilers to allow developers to use Apple’s Swift coding language for Android development. Previously, the company did something similar for C# and now the company is tackling Swift.

Silver allows app makers to write in the Swift language (which is still in its infancy, really) but code against the API’s and frameworks of non-Apple platforms.

Read more at9to5mac

Study Says ZMapp Works Against Ebola

A new study provides strong evidence
that the experimental drug given to two American aid workers stricken with Ebola in Africa really works and could make a difference in the current
outbreak — if more of it could be produced.

In the study, all 18 monkeys exposed to a lethal dose of Ebola virus survived
when given the drug, known as ZMapp, even when the treatment was started five days after infection, when the animals were already sick.

Moreover, the monkeys’ symptoms, such as excessive bleeding, rashes and signs of liver toxicity, eventually
disappeared. By contrast, all three
monkeys in the control group died.
Experts said these were the best monkey results reported to date for any Ebola drug, raising hopes that the drug will work in people.

Read more here from the source

TegraZone app now available on Google Play Store for non Tegra devices

Screen shot of tegra zone on play storeNVIDIA has updated its TegraZone app, which means that the app is now fully compatible with non-Tegra devices. Previously it was available for the mobile devices, which came powered by Nvidia’s Tegra 2, Tegra 3, and Tegra 4 mobile processors, as well as Nvidia Shield.

The TegraZone app, now available to download from the Google Play store, comes in version 2.9.0. On the Play Store, Nvidia says “TegraZone is not intended to replace the purchase, download, or functionality of Google Play, but rather to compliment it by providing a selection of premium games that developers believe will offer an exceptional experience for users of Tegra-powered phones and tablets.”

Nvidia also announced the wide-compatibility on the official website, saying “TegraZone is now enabled for users of non-Tegra devices so they can learn about Tegra and great Android games.”

Other features included in the latest TegraZone update include shortcut sharing icons; highlighting special interest groups of games by publisher, feature and genre; support for Nvidia Shield and Android HID controllers for set-top boxes and microconsoles; and archived news items.

Recently at CES 2014 event, Nvidia introduced the “GameStream-Ready” ecosystem of PCs and Wi-Fi routers, which offers the gamers smooth and low-latency gaming from their Nvidia-powered PC or the Nvidia Grid cloud.

This streaming technology would only work in those PCs which feature a compatible Nvidia GeForce GTX card and have Nvidia GeForce Experience installed, a PC optimization tool for gamers. For streaming the games in a swift manner, Nvidia, besides PCs, have been also working with some router manufacturers.

The GameStream technology was released less than a year ago, and enables gamers to stream games from their Nvidia PCs or from the Nvidia Grid cloud to their Shield portable gaming consoles.

Windows 8.1 update may bypass Metro UI and boot to desktop mode instead

windows 8.1 Microsoft may make a huge concession to users who aren’t too fond of the Metro UI. The next Windows 8.1 update will supposedly boot straight to desktop mode and bypass the controversial Metro UI completely.

The OS update is still in development, but a recent report from the Verge indicates that Microsoft is currently testing a version of the update that boots to desktop mode by default. Unnamed sources stated that Microsoft is testing the default desktop boot to optimize the software for users without touchscreens who must depend on a keyboard and mouse to navigate Windows 8.1. Since the majority of PC owners don’t have new touchscreen monitors for their desktops or touchscreen laptops yet, Microsoft’s decision makes sense.

When Microsoft first launched Windows 8, PC users were in an uproar over the foreign and frightening Metro UI. The widespread discontent with the new Metro UI forced Microsoft to admit that people really wanted their desktop back. The first Windows 8.1 update offered only the smallest concession to angry users by allowing them to set boot to desktop as their default setting. Of course, users still had to change their preferences before getting back to the comfort of the Windows desktop interface.

By and large, the Windows 8.1 update was a disappointment and most users agreed that it did not go far enough. Many argued that Windows 8.1 was simply what Windows 8 should have been when it was released. It seems that Microsoft has taken users’ criticism to heart and plans to make amends in the only way it knows how: going backwards.

However, the Windows 8.1 update won’t completely get rid of the Metro UI. The version that is currently in testing allows metro apps to run in a separate window while the user is in desktop mode. Users will also be able to access their metro tiles if they want simply by hitting the Windows key. Microsoft continues to grow its metro app selection and improve the Windows Store, but many users aren’t that interested.

In order to win over its skeptics, Microsoft will have to make some very serious changes to its fledgling OS before Windows 9 is released. The Windows 8.1 update is expected to arrive sometime in March and will feature other minor improvements to the Metro UI. More information about the progress of Windows 9 will most likely become available during the Build developer conference this May.