Posts tagged with: Editorial
  • by | April 23, 2014 1:01 PM

    Smartphone thefts are a real thing. Smartphones are valuable, even ones with broken screens or older models. Someone looking to make a quick buck can snag a seemingly basic, beaten smartphone when its owner isn't looking, take it to a classified ads site (not unlike Craigslist) and sell it later that day for a quick buck. It's a very small amount of work for a quick $50 to $300, depending on the phone and its condition. And the more popular and common smartphones are, the higher the risk of theft will inevitably become. We've seen an increasing number of phone thefts which ultimately lead ...

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  • by | April 23, 2014 7:18 AM

    Mobile devices used to be primarily portable email boxes with integrated calendar and contacts. In the early days, some of them may have included web browsers, but they were very primitive. Back then the Web was very complex, and designed for screens with resolutions of 800 by 600 and higher. To accommodate phones and PDAs a "new" web was invented, one that used a completely different protocol to address the concerns of much smaller screens, slower processors, and mobile data plans. None of which were anywhere close to what we have today. WAP & WML This "new" web was based on something ...

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  • by | April 23, 2014 7:00 AM

    It’s funny. Steve Jobs always used to talk about giving the people what they want before they knew they wanted it. In my experience with mobile technology, nothing has proven this concept more than voice control. It started with Windows Mobile voice control years ago. It came to the mainstream with Siri a few generations ago – generations from a mobile tech perspective that is. It continued forward with Google Now. Today, in addition to the aforementioned assistants, we have Cortana finally gracing the last platform hold-out. Being the Windows Phone fan that I am, I haven’t really ...

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  • by | April 22, 2014 4:17 PM

    Smartphone manufacturers have turned it up to 11 this year. For many, it's do or die. Take HTC for example. Its sales, revenues, market share, and mind share have all been consistently dwindling over the last several years. Even while the company has remained relevant and maintained its habit of creating spectacular, beautiful, competitive devices, its stance in the market, particularly in comparison to Samsung and Apple, is paltry. And despite bringing home handfuls of awards with the One (M7), little has changed for the company. Granted, HTC has the means of keeping its business afloat ...

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  • by | April 22, 2014 7:18 AM

    A "kill switch" is often referred to as an "emergency stop switch", and is typically a safety mechanism used to shut something off in case of an emergency. When talking about machinery or even fuel pumps at your local gas station, a "kill switch" is a singular button or lever that will shut down everything. It doesn't matter which pump is spewing out gasoline or which machine your co-worker may be stuck in, this one button will shut everything down -- letting you sort out the specifics later. It's a great idea, the kill switch, when used properly. It brings with it significant and ...

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  • by | April 21, 2014 7:21 PM

    In typical Samsung fashion, the South Korea-based company is rumored to continue its "fire hose" method of saturating the market in every way possible. Not only does Samsung manage to cater to every last consumer imaginable through creating dozens of similar-yet-different products, it likes to bend the likes of its staple brands to appeal to different consumers, as well. For instance, last year, we saw the Galaxy S 4 mini, Galaxy S 4 Zoom, and the Galaxy S 4 Active, all of which were actually very little like the original device they each were derived from. Samsung also revealed the Galaxy ...

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  • by | April 21, 2014 3:31 PM

    Last year certainly helped change and shape the future of the wireless industry – more so than years past. Android, for one, transgressed beyond the false pretense that specifications are the be-all and end-all of great smartphones. Before, it was always about bigger, better, more impressive specifications – optimization be damned. OEMs were more worried about packing smartphones with 1080p screens, high-res cameras, faster CPUs with more cores, etc. All the while, prices of most the viable smartphones remained the same. Nearly all the affordable smartphones of yore offered a terrible ...

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  • by | April 21, 2014 7:18 AM

    Some things in life should be exclusive, like the people who are allowed to drive my car or eventually date my daughter. Other things, however, should be open to the general public. Parks, roads, drinking fountains, and the front seats of busses come to mind. Unfortunately, that's not the way things work over here in the States, at least not when we're talking about cellular phones. Carrier exclusives are still very much a thing -- although they should not be, not any more anyway. "Exclusives" are just like they sound, "restricted or limited to the person, group, or area concerned". When ...

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  • by | April 18, 2014 7:17 AM

    Printers from yesteryear used parallel ports. Modems used serials ports -- which were available in either 9- or 25-pin varieties. High-speed devices like scanners and external drives used to connect via any number of SCSI connections. A company I used to work for even made products that let you daisy-chain two together via parallel port, and even came out with a drive that you could plug into either a parallel port or a 25-pin SCSI port. Even common devices like keyboards and mice connected through a PS/2 or other style connector. Put another way, there were just far too many kinds of ...

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  • by | April 17, 2014 7:16 AM

    The Nexus 5 was unveiled on October 31st of last year, and offered for sale through Google's Play Store the same day. In those several months I've run the stock version of Android, though about half way through I rooted it and run several apps that require those elevated privileges. That's pretty significant. It's the first personal phone that I haven't run a Custom ROM on since my very early days with Windows CE. Even back then I ran "cooked" ROMs on my Pocket PCs. Since then, running a Custom ROM has gotten significantly easier. Rooting toolkits are available that take all the guesswork ...

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  • by | April 16, 2014 6:07 PM

    Per usual, all eyes are on the major Android manufacturers as the 2014 flagships come out. We've reviewed the One M8 twice. Despite my initial takeaway from the announcement, I ended up buying one as my personal device anyway. And Michael is in the process of reviewing the Galaxy S 5. Sony's flagship is just around the bend, and a handful of other major smartphones will launch in the second half of the year. But there are two other manufacturers enthusiasts are eyeing this spring, two up-and-comers determined to make waves and bring some of their own flare to a stagnating market: Oppo, out ...

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  • by | April 16, 2014 7:20 AM

    If you've never used wireless charging, you're missing out, and you just can't understand how convenient it is. Every time you need to charge your device, you've got to have a cord plugged into an electrical outlet (or a portable battery). You probably have a few of these "tentacles" positioned in strategic locations that are quickly accessible throughout your day. Although somewhat convenient, that gets a bit messy and unorganized. I currently have four devices in my household that can charge wirelessly via the Qi standard. I wish I had more. To combat the widespread use of wall-wart ...

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  • by | April 16, 2014 7:00 AM

    Windows Phone 8.1 dropped earlier this week. We saw it at Build, but now we’re actually using it. And it’s for really real. Sure it’s a “Developer’s Preview” and sure some of the features aren’t quite done cooking, but it’s a pretty impressive upgrade to what Windows Phone users have been using. Plus, it’s available for (I think it’s reasonable to say) most Windows Phone users out there, less than two weeks after it’s debut on stage. That’s availability of Apple proportions. The reason this is so exciting is because in so many ways, Microsoft leveled the operating ...

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  • by | April 15, 2014 7:26 PM

    We tend to get a little fussy over carrier bloat, or the pre-installed applications that may come on a number of carrier-specific Android or Windows Phone smartphones. Bloat can and often does come from carriers, partners like Amazon, and even the manufacturer. For instance, I bought the T-Mobile HTC One M8 just this morning. It comes with five T-Mobile-specific applications I'll rarely (if ever) use: Mobile HotSpot, My Account, T-Mobile Name ID, T-Mobile TV, and Visual Voicemail. While it's mostly minimal, these applications cannot be uninstalled – only reverted to the original versions ...

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  • by | April 15, 2014 3:49 PM

    When HTC finally drew back the curtains on the One M8, I was in awe. What a beautiful phone, right? Not everyone agrees. Michael says the design of the One M7 is prettier and more bold, even if the M8 is more refined and feels better in the hand. Still, few will argue that the One M8 is anything but a masterpiece. The phone is gorgeous, it feels phenomenal in the hand, and it's a marvel in smartphone design, a testament to HTC's attention to detail and design prowess. Inside and out, it's one of the most complete, balanced, and spectacular phones I've ever used. Period. But the camera is ...

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