Rush Limbaugh is one of the most polarizing figures in America. As a fellow tech geek, I love to hear his comments on Apple products and the company as a whole. And even if you don’t agree with Rush’s politics, he’s dead on when it comes to his opinion on everything Apple.
It seems that no matter what the technology is, hackers have to come along and ruin it with malware in an attempt to cheat unsuspecting users out of their hard earned money. Smartphone technologies seem to be of particular interest for cyber criminals in 2012 and 2013. Everything from bluetooth to NFC has already been abused, and in some cases it’s better to not even use the technology anymore because the danger is so high.
Hackers have apparently gone so far that they are using non-technical means to peddle their malware infected sites. A new and growing trend seems to be the placement of malicious QR codes in high-traffic areas. These codes can either be placed near legitimate advertisements or used as stand-alone ads. QR code users will then use the QR codes to load a webpage — not knowing that the code took them to a site that infects their device with malware or brings them to a phishing site in an attempt to steal identities.
I’m a battery junky. Since I’m always on the road — and always using my phone, tablet, laptop and 4G jetpack, I’m painfully aware of just how dependent I am on battery power. Every night, it’s quite a chore to make sure I plug in each device at night before I go to bed. It’s therefore easy to imagine that I can’t wait for the day where wireless power becomes a reality. And indeed, it will likely happen in my lifetime. But for now, I’d settle for a decent wireless charging solution so I could walk in my house or office and no longer have to worry about plugging stuff in. It would just start charging automatically.
One of the little talked about benefits of the latest-gen smartphones and tablets is the fact that manufacturers are finally starting to implement wireless chips inside them that can utilize 802.11n at 5 GHz. Many people don’t realize, but before the iPhone 5 and iPad 3, all of Apple’s smartphones and tablets only leveraged wireless chips that operated at 2.4 GHz. This is a problem for many that have a great deal of wireless interference on 2.4 GHz while 5 GHz has far less congestion. Additionally, utilizing 802.11n at 5 GHz allows you to achieve much better performance.
Now that it’s Christmas 2012, the 7 inch tablet market has reached a fever pitch. We now have high-end devices (with mid-range prices) like the Samsung Galaxy tab, Google Nexus 7, Amazon Kindle Fire HD and even the Apple iPod mini are the talk of the town. But there’s one little tablet that’s been around for a long time now that just won’t go away. The Nook Color. And despite the Nook Color falling behind in the specifications department, it’s still fully capable and highly hackable — which makes it a tech geeks go-to tablet despite all the newcomers. After all, it is one of the only tablets out there with an micro-SD card slot. And to top it off, there are great deals on the Nook Color — everything from new units going for $99 on Black Friday, to refurbished units going for $79 online. In my opinion, the Nook Color is a perfectly capable tablet that’s going to find it’s way into plenty of Christmas stockings this year. And if you’re looking for something to tinker around with, for under $100, you can’t go wrong.
Economics sometimes works in strange ways. During slow economic times — such as the one we’re currently going through — low-end and cheap products sit on the shelves while high quality and more pricy ones seem to do just fine. This is the situation with the smartphone and tablet case market right now. OtterBox makes a high quality, yet expensive case and it’s flying off the shelves. My most recent OtterBox case is the Defender for my new iPad, and I absolutely love it.
When I first unboxed the new iPad this morning, my first impression was “meh”. Because, as we all know, the new iPad hardware is nearly identical to the old one. While I’m a bit disappointed in the lack of physical design changes, I completely understand Apple’s thinking. Just look at the current MacBook Pro design as a comparison. The MBP has been relatively unchanged for nearly four years now and still is a beautiful piece of hardware.
It’s that time of year where tech bloggers all around the world give their predictions about the future of hardware/software in 2012. I realized that I haven’t made a single prediction yet so I decided that I should at least try. Here goes:
Someone asked me today: which one should i get, the Nook Color or the newer Nook Tablet? I had to scratch my head a bit because I didn’t realize that Barnes and Noble still even sold the Nook Color. But I checked, and sure enough, the Nook Color can still be bought for $199 while the Nook Tablet is going for $249.
The CyanogenMod team is at it again. This time, they’re taking on Androids’s recently released 4.0 software — otherwise known as Ice Cream Sandwich. The Ice Cream Sandwich version of CyanogenMod will be known as CyanogenMod 9 or simply CM9.
But let’s not get too excited just yet as the CM team has stated:
I finally received the Nokia N9 upgrade notification on my phone on November 23rd while in Bangkok Thailand. I knew that I could have download the update onto my computer and performed a manual install off of the USB earlier but I wanted to see how the OTA upgrade worked.
I was doing some traveling on the 23rd and wanted to be in a spot where I had a WiFi connection as was recommended by Nokia. So I had to wait a full 24 hours until I was back at home. Once there, I performed the recommended backup and then pressed the update software button. But nothing happened.
Nothing in life is perfect and that even goes for the Nokia N9. I’ve already admitted in previous blogs that I love my N9. But…I do have some complaints at the same time. For one, the Facebook app is pretty weak sauce. It’s horribly slow and you are often presented with the now famous black screen with the: “FacebookQML not responding” message. After 10 seconds or so, the app kicks back in but it’s very annoying. Also, the Facebook app lacks the ability to check-in and really seems outdated compared to the iOS Facebook app.
When I first started using the Nokia N9, right away I knew there was something special about the display but I couldn’t put my finger on just exactly what it was. You see, when you use the N9, it’s almost as if the icons on the main screen float in mid-air. This is because the black background produces no light whatsoever…as if the LCD’s were simply turned off. It truly is remarkable and puts my iPod Touch 4th Generation Retina display to shame despite the Retina displays higher pixel count.
I did a bit of digging and discovered that Nokia is using a technology in their AMOLED screens called ClearBlack. This new technology uses a polarized filter between the Gorilla glass and the LED lights that blocks light when it shouldn’t be seen by the end user–this is obviously most useful with the color black.
I should note that Nokia is using this tech not only on the new N9 but also on the E7 and C6 phones. But in my opinion, ClearBlack is perfect for the minimalist-look of MeeGo on the N9.
Many people are currently in the same boat that I was. You’ve been using the iPhone for years and feel like you’ve spent so much time with iTunes creating all your playlists that it would be a shame to not be able to use them again. So much so that it is causing you to rethink your plans to buy the super-cool Nokia N9 because it doesn’t play nice with iTunes.
I read about how to make a SIM into a Micro SIM when the original iPad came out. But because I never had a device that actually used a device that required a Micro SIM, I never attempted this until just a few days ago.
I finally put my money where my mouth was when I previously stated that the Nokia N9 was the most interesting smartphone of 2011. When Apple finally announced the iPhone 4S, I honestly was a little let down with their offering. After all, nobody I know was asking for a faster processor, marginally better camera and voice recognition with a slightly modified OS. Instead, I was looking for something completely different from end-to-end and the Nokia N9 does exactly that.
To start, the hardware of the N9 is absolutely first rate. Nokia has been in the hardware “biz” for a long time now and it really shows. The phone is very light, yet it feels like you could drop it without any worries. For those of you that are really concerned, Nokia was nice enough to include a protective silicone case. The great thing about this particular case is that it really becomes part of the phone as it fits very snugly and doesn’t add any unnecessary bulk. Also included with the N9 is a pair of headphones, USB charger and AC adapter.
I realize I”m a little late to the party in talking about the Kindle Fire. But I thought I’d briefly add my two cents. On first glance of the new 7 inch color tablet from Amazon, I’d say it’s very much like the Nook Color…only crippled. Yes, clearly the Fire has a much more powerful dual-core processor compared to the single-core processor found in the NC. Additionally, the Fire runs Android 2.3 Gingerbread right out of the box while the Nook is still running Froyo 2.2.
Most of us have already heard about Amazon’s upcoming Android tablet…But did you know that Barnes and Noble is also rumored to release the Nook Color 2 in just a few weeks? Not only that, but I just read today that Lenovo is also expected to release a budget tablet very soon as well.
For those that have been following my Nook Color blogs, you’ll know that I’ve been raving about the OtterBox Commuter case that has been far and away better than every other Nook Color case I’ve seen out there. The OtterBox is strong, sleek and honestly makes the NC a better device in terms of button responses through the protected rubber buttons. Continue reading