Laptop , PC or Tablet ? Where will we go next ?

5 09 2012

Personally, I have a laptop, phone and tablet and used to own a desktop PC, until it became pretty antiquated with its 40GB hard drive.

Most people have made the jump from a desktop to a laptop, usually stating their main reason for this as it being easier to move around and more portable etc. This, 9 times out of 10 is absolutely bull. I know that 3 laptops later, my laptop sits at my desk and used to make a rare journey to the kitchen for me to view recipes, since the arrival of my iPad.. old laptop’y stays where is all day long, on my desk plugged into its power supply.

Most people also absolutely obliterate the battery on their machines by constantly keeping them plugged in, this severely screws with your battery, with older machines benefitting more from a complete charge and decharge session as opposed to constant full power and attempted charging the longer you leave it plugged in and the more frequently you do this the more chance you have of your battery holding a pitiful amount of charge (this goes for mobile phones in most cases and tablets too).

Desktop PC’s, a regular in some homes but I’d say a dying breed for most recently, this is why in my opinion, it is the best time to buy one of these beauties. Modern desktop Towers aren’t exactly Towers they are more like bungalows.. Some modern desktop towers are smaller than some early mobile phones! These also pack a serious punch and are usually for more hardcore computer enthusiasts with better performance specs, and usual mobility not being much of a huge concern for somebody who usually gets all their work done in the same place anyway.

Above is an example of a modern tower, in comparison with some older towers the size is massively different. Many modern PC’s also allow you to use your television as an output device meaning that if you are low on space your TV can function as your monitor, and with wireless keyboards and mice its long past the times of having to sit within a specific distance of the tower.

Tablets, now what can we say about Tablets. A new genre if you like has been created, and performs its role extremely well but is it a replacement to any of the above ? As far as im concerned, my tablet bridges the gap between my mobile phone and my laptop. I couldn’t see myself replacing my laptop with a tablet, but it performs a whole other duty to which I dont think you can fully appreciate without having used a tablet for about a month to learn of its uses ! My iPad is used mostly for social networking, internet browsing, emails and games. These are all things that you can do on a laptop but are mostly easier to do on a tablet, and can be done far easier than a laptop as tablets are incredibly more portable than a laptop (especially one that is constantly plugged in)

Laptops are laptops. Most people have a laptop as their main household computer I’d say these days, or most definately the kid of the house has a laptop (god knows what they are doing with it) and they do what they do, and perform it well. Its a screen, keyboard and mouse built into one with all of its components contained, this is why I think they overtook PC’s.. Not the portability factor, but more towards it all being in one contained unit, for one easy transaction and not buying keyboards, mice and monitors separately. In buying a modern laptop, your specs on standard models probably aren’t a kick in the behind away from the specs on a standard PC, but depending on your level of brand loyalty may cost you alot more. Laptops, like PC’s have higher end hardcore models but you would usually find in a battle of the hardcore models, the PC would usually have the lead when it came to specs.

My advice, if you are buying anything is to do your research, and buy based on what you need it for. Its all fair and good saying this PC is the best for hardcore gaming, but if you are somebody who only surfs the web and reads their emails then this is definately not for them. I like to think of myself as a geek but my laptop is no where near what I’d call high spec, the range is almost limitless depending on what you are after. If i was buying again, I’d trade my laptop for a PC and keep my tablet. Tablets perform their own role, as I mentioned earlier, you can’t make a judgement without having the use of one for a week or 2. At first I thought my iPad would sit and be rarely used due a mobile phone and a laptop but it has been more or less stuck to my hand for the past few months, it was something I thought of as an additional extra but now I would find it difficult to live without.

Where do you think tech will go from here ? What else have we left to make !?

What do you use currently ?

Would you buy differently when you came to renewing your tech?

How often do you renew your tech ?

What do you look for most in any of the above ?

Thanks !!





Chirp iOS App Review

8 08 2012

Chirp is a free app on the iOS store, specifically for iPhone but can also be downloaded for iPod Touch and iPad with no real effect on the user experience.

Its classed as a ‘social networking’ app by iTunes, but isn’t your usual Twitter or Facebook, although it does include integration with both of these services.

This app uses sound to send data from Phone to Phone. I had this set up with 2 iPad’s in my house and used it to send notes, links, pictures etc. When you open up the interface you can choose what your looking to send, the app then changes this information to a sound wave and plays the ‘chirp’ through the devices speaker, the other device picks this noise up via the microphone and translates it back into what it should be, i.e a picture or a note. For the devices to register and translate the chirp, the app its self must be open, so it will not translate chirps if the app is open in the background.

Of course there are numerous advantages as well as disadvantages with this,

This could be used on a large scale e.g played through the speakers at a local supermarket giving shoppers voucher codes or special offers, or it could be used in a room full of people to quickly send and share photos or links with everyone.

On the downside, playing chirps as a way of sending messages in a public place means anyone with the app open can intercept the message and have a nosey into your conversation or steal your images !

This, I see more of an innovative creative kind of new tech. This shouldn’t have holes poked in it due to its lack of security in public places, it should be praised as somebody thinking outside the box and not making another repetitive ‘freemium’ game. This app may be the first of this sort of technology but could become mainstream with numerous applications outside the app world being possible..





Dead Trigger Review IOS Android , Is Piracy killing the industry ?

5 08 2012

Dead Trigger is a first-person shooter for Android and iOS and has recently became Free to download! This is a free to play app, and does not require In-App-Purchases to provide you with a high quality of gaming!

The game follows a character as they try to work their way through a Zombie infested city, shooting as many as possible on the way !

The graphics on this game are massively impressive for a mobile game, both versions on iOS and Android look equally as good, my preference being for iOS on this instance due to seeing it on the larger screen of the I-Pad in comparison with my G-Nex.

The game-play of the game is good, and the main mode doesn’t suffer from as much lag as I would have expected, especially due to the enormity of the maps and the details that are put into each and every aspect of the game, from characters to weapons to scenery.

This game used to be $0.99, not a massive cost, but changed to being free due to the massive amount of piracy mainly on the Android platform, but more recently too on I Tunes. The game is quite lengthy, and even at its older price of $0.99 You would be making a wise purchase as it gives a pretty lengthy campaign and very high quality gaming.

One of the gripes I have is the controls, I don’t see how these can be improved but there are definately some issues. Your left finger controls looking around whilst your right does the walking, coupling this with the shoot button being right above the right analog stick and you have some issues. This same fault also effects games such as Grand Theft Auto, and with the lack of physical buttons on most devices recently, it seems a difficult problem to work around.

The piracy issue may seem great for gamers at first, games becoming free because the developers would rather you play them legally than steal them, but this in fact carries a lot of major issues and worries along with it. Games may become filled with a ridiculous volume of ads or developers may move away from the Android or iOS market completely. This game along was thought to have a 90% piracy rate before the price drop.

Mad Finger boss Marek Rabas explained in a post on Gamezebo”Our main goal is not to make lots of money, we do not want to be the second Disney or sell out the company for millions of dollars. Also, we do not have to please investors each financial quarter with better results on their profit. We just simply enjoy making games.”

Although this supports the view of “oh great we will get more free games”, this statement will not reflect the views of all app-developers and gaming companies.

Since the game is now Free! I’d urge you to atleast give it a go and show a bit of respect for the work of Developers.





Apple iOS 6 Preview ! Nemesis of Jelly Bean

23 07 2012

http://www.apple.com/ios/ios6/

A lot of tech geeks have already had a sneaky peak at iOS 6 with Beta’s making the rounds already!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sqy1doZ8L1M – this video gives a good look at how to get iOS 6 Beta without an Apple Dev account.

With iOS being updated to full new builds less frequently than Android, the list of new features and modifications is pretty substantial and impressive !

If I was to summarise this in one line, It would be, think of part of the current iOS .. Its now better.

As well as obviously being the OS that will run on the new IPhone, due to Apples better handle on the update process, the IPad 2/3 and IPhone 3GS/4/4S  and the 4th Gen IPod Touch will all benefit too.

Siri

Taking this into account first and foremost, the IPad HD/3 is getting Siri !
Siri has also had some major upgrade work, understanding more questions, giving more information and also being incorporated into some cars steering wheels within the next 12 months with Jaguars, Land Rovers, BMWs, Mercedes, Toyotas, Chryslers, Hondas, Audis and GM cars all advising this would be supported.

Facebook Integration

With Twitter already Integrated pretty well into the iOS now its time for Facebook with pretty much the same features being used. This will increase your ability to share different aspects of your phone and also introduces the ability to recommend different apps in the App Store to your friends.

Phone

The most important part of a phone you would think ! This has had an update allowing you to reject calls with set messages, as well as introducing a ‘Do Not Disturb’ feature basically preventing all notifications and phone calls during a set time with the ability to exclude certain people or numbers from this service also.

Maps

A lot has been said recently about the new Maps software with Google also bringing out their own equivalent new version. The new iOS Maps has integrated Sat-Nav as well as traffic information and an incredible looking fly-over map showing a lot of the big cities in stunning fashion.

Passbook

Passbook is an entirely new App/Service entirely for iOS but may remind some of Google Wallet. This essentially is as the name suggests, an app that keeps all of your passes in one place e.g Plane Tickets, Gift Cards, Coupons, Cinema Tickets etc. This, like many features may be location specific originally and may only be featured by specific retailers but it looks like a step in the right direction!

Conclusion

I had to put in a conclusion section so you dont think im still blabbing about Passbook! The list of changes is substantial, and to cover all of these in one blog post would make some pretty lengthy reading. If your looking for any more info I’d recommend checking out the Apple link at the top of the page or http://www.techradar.com/news/phone-and-communications/mobile-phones/ios-6-everything-you-need-to-know-1083928 These are both incredible resources with a huge amount of info on the new OS.

With Android now claiming a larger proportion of the mobile market in many countries now, this update could be a major player ! Only time will tell..





Playstation , Xbox , Nintendo .. Now Ouya !!

18 07 2012

Ohhhhh yaaaaaaaaah! No, not a Randy Savage wannabe but a new console completely !

With the introduction of the Internet and then Social media, the preverbial rumour mill is on full speed constantly, new games, new apps, new this, new that. Ouya started out and has been making the rounds mostly thought of as a rumour, but has since been confirmed as official.

Streaming games has become largely more popular recently with devices such as Onlive and Gaikai, but in my opinion still hasn’t made it completely main stream as of yet.

The Ouya is going to come in at $99 and via http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/ouya/ouya-a-new-kind-of-video-game-console you can donate to the project starting from as little as $10 to $10,000. These clearly range in what you get, with $10 reserving your Username for the service and $10,000 getting you an invite to the launch, a console and clearly a massive handshake from the developers ! The aim as you can see was to raise just under $1million. As 5 times this has been raised, it hopefully shouldn’t be too long away.

The first of these donation packages to include the actual device is $99 with additional shipping costs outside the US and additional costs for an extra controller etc as you would expect.

The device is made to be open running Android 4.0, meaning that Ouya effectively welcomes hackers with your warranty still being valid even after hacking. This means that games can be tweaked and made from scratch as well as the actual box its self giving budding developers a chance to show their stuff. All of the screws on the device are normal ordinary run of the mill screws giving easy access to mod till your hearts content with new peripherals and accessories possible with the help of your screwdriver!

The specs are thought to be pretty impressive also boasting a Quad-Core Tegra 3 Processor, 1GB of RAM and 8GB of storage initially, with the obvious choice of changing and altering these due to its open source nature.

One of the best points of this new device is that at least some of every single game developed for it must be free.
Whether this means getting a free demo or getting an entirely free game with additional paid content available is completely up to the developer but should hopefully be a lot easier on the pocket than £40/£50 per game with £200/300 consoles.

For $99, it seems a bit of a bargain thus far. I’m in the UK so I’d have to pay $119 ( £75 roughly). For that sort of money its surely worth an investment, considering its difficult to even get some pre-owned consoles for a similar price, still paying £40 a game.

The estimated delivery of the devices is March 2013, 9 months till hopefully a  new world of gaming begins !!








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