Tag Archive: iPhone


LG-logo-Android

Just a month ago I read somewhere on the web that “considering LG’s dedication towards its incredible work and consumer response especially in the mobile segment, it lets us witnessed very soon that the company (LG) will also be in line along with Apple or Samsung to generate maximum revenue from its mobile sector”. And finally, that day has come! Strategy Analytics has confirmed that worldwide smartphone shipments have reached 210 million units that shows the growth of 36% annually in just the first quarter of 2013. The Major market share was captured by the top giants Samsung and Apple obviously however, they were followed by LG at number three for the first time ever.

According to the report issued by the researchers team of Strategy Analysts, Samsung, Apple and LG shares were as mentioned below:

Brand

Smartphone Units Sells

Market Share in (%)

Samsung

69.4 Million

33.1

Apple

37.4 Million

17.9

LG

10.3 Million

4.9

Currently, LG is wooing the market with the Optimus G Pro while Samsung looks all set to rule the roost again with its powerful Galaxy S4. The Korean manufacturers have some strong competition from Taiwanese company HTC with their super stylish HTC One and let’s not forget the iPhone 5 which has been around for a while. In essence, all these companies are pushing hard for market dominance. However, it all comes down to the decision of today’s customer who is well informed and nitpicky and can easily differentiate between the different flagship mobiles.

Now LG’s unit volume might look meagre as compared to that of Samsung and Apple but the truth is that it is a big step in the right direction as these sales show that end users now have a much more positive outlook towards LG mobile as compared to the insipid response from previous years. It is also the perfect catalyst for LG to constantly improve and increase its market share in the coming years.

Twitter has launched its much awaited Music app for iPhone and web users on 18 April. Android phone users would have to wait a little further – Twitter has promised that service will eventually be available on Android devices very soon as well. This music app collects users’ activity information based on their account as to which bands or artist they follow, and will find music they like accordingly.

twitter

The app has an extremely intuitive user interface with a sleek and polished design made up of each artist or song’s page displayed in a grid. As you tap the play button on an image of an artist, it will start playing a clip from one song picked to represent them and an animated CD will spin on the bottom of left corner. It has four swipeable tabs “Popular”, “Emerging”, “Suggested” and “Now Playing” to help users navigate new songs and provides a dedicated page for Artist that the user is following at present.  The “Popular” tab is dedicated to trending songs on Twitter while “Emerging” tab is for up-and-coming artists. “Suggested” tab displays result on the basis of user’s following of bands or artist. “Now Playing “tab lists the songs tweeted by the people whom the user follows.

For web users it is available at https://music.twitter.com. However, for iPhone users, the app will be initially available in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Ireland, Australia and New Zealand only before it is spread to other countries.

International-CES

It’s that time of the year again that one of the biggest consumer electronic fair kicks off in the jam-packed Las Vegas Convention Centre. I am pretty sure that all the technology-enthusiasts out there would be waiting with bated breath to see all the new innovations that are supposed to be unveiled. What we generally miss is the lighter side of things. Browsing across YouTube I found this really quirky yet humorous video which has been compiled with the honest intent of some light-hearted humor.

All credits to the maker for this thoroughly enjoyable compilation. In all seriousness, I will be covering the interesting products that are unveiled during this consumer electronics fair. But for now, I will leave you with the giggles you get from watching this video!

mayans

So another eventful year has passed by and I am sure everybody was in high spirits while welcoming 2013; buoyed by the fact that the Mayans got it wrong and you’re still alive and kicking! And to be honest, I won’t be exaggerating when I say that the jokes were getting stretched beyond imagination so I am glad it has been put to rest with the passing days.

Now that we’re done with that, I thought what better way to start the New Year than highlighting the highs and lows of consumer electronics in 2012. So here we go!

CES 2012: The Las Vegas electronics feature was quite the crowd-puller with several heavyweights unveiling new technologies. Announcement of flagship handsets by the mainstream players emphasized that future Smartphones will be bigger and better. Laptops were shown to getting evolved from compact machines to cutting-edge “Ultrabooks”. And HDTV’s turned over a new leaf of convergence with the unveiling of the world’s first 55-inch OLED TV by LG.

VERDICT: HIGH!

 

APPLE VS SAMSUNG SAGA: This never-ending dispute seems like giving Harry Potter and LOTR a run for their money! If it had been about core technologies, I would have understood the unrest but going through litigation for icons and features which are a standard for any Smartphone these days is just juvenile at best. This whole rundown is a glorified castigation for consumers who crave innovation.

VERDICT: ALL TIME LOW!

 

LAPTOPS: One would be forgiven for not finding it exciting with the amount of options available but look closely and there’s reason to rejoice. From just being laptops, these machines have evolved into sleeker, robust and faster computing units. Intel’s own Ultrabook and Lenovo Ideapad Yoga represents what mobile computing will be capable of in the coming years.

VERDICT: HIGH!

 

SMARTPHONES: With Android being the dominant OS, Samsung became the biggest manufacturer of Smartphones worldwide overtaking Apple. And the whole tussle did result in some funny commercials. With Sony, LG and HTC lining up their flagship handsets for MWC 2013, it’s exciting times ahead for the Android community. Another major highlight of 2012 has been the emergence of Windows OS as a worthy rival to Android. And with most of the manufacturers working on Windows OS based Smartphones you might soon be spoilt for choice as a prospective consumer.

Obligatory mention: The launch of iPhone 5 amidst the controversies. The newest avatar of iPhone failed to live up to its hype.

VERDICT: It’s a pudding of many flavors so I’ll let you pick and choose!

lg-84-inch-tv

IFA 2012: The next one in line, the most important unveilings at this event imo was the launch of Ultra HD TV’s and a few pointers of the impending launch of OLED TV’s. Another gadget that caught the eye was definitely the Samsung Galaxy Camera.

VERDICT: HIGH!

Well that’s about it from my end. And feel absolutely free to share something I might have missed and I’ll be more than happy to update it in here. Coz as they say, you can never know everything yourself!

For Indian tech enthusiasts and geeks, 3D is mostly an unknown quantity. The trend is not much different over the rest of the world. Yet, we find that 3D literally adds a new dimension to many of the products we use in daily course of life. 3D is emerging as a technology that can provide that most elusive of qualities to any products or brand – differentiation. Apple also seems to have realized it – which stands to reason – since Apple has always been one of the most innovative brands over the last two decades – providing unique solutions to general users. Its range of products – Mac, iPod, iPhone, iPad, Apple TV etc is living testaments to this.3D Technology for Apple

Apple is working on a number of innovations that involve extensive use of 3D technology. For example, a new 3D camera is reportedly in works – eventually to be added to i-products. The 3D camera will be equipped with solid graphic capabilities that will capture 3D images that will then be displayed on the screens of various Apple devices. There are also reports of an Apple patent that purports to develop 3D remote – that includes a gyroscopic sensor and a touch interface – that will work with a host of Apple devices. This magic wand sounds quite similar to the Magic Motion Remote of LG 3D TVs – though the final picture will be clear only when the device is finally revealed.

Apple has a tradition of sorts for making apps and devices that use technology in an innovative way to benefit the final user. For example, they already offer eye-tracking 3d technology for iPhone and iPad, and 3d maps in iPhone. Therefore, it only seems fit that Apple will probably establish the 3D TV technology among general users – an endeavor in which most of the other companies have achieved mixed success at the best.

Apple 3D TVApple has already adopted a technology that will allow Apple TV users to enjoy 3D TV viewing without being burdened with cumbersome 3D glasses. Apple TV has recently tied up with Stream TV Networks, a company that develops glass free 3D technology for TV sets. As per reports, Apple TV will use Stream’s Ultra-D technology – which uses a combination of software and hardware to convert 2D images to 3D, and then beam it in HD in a way that is suitable for glass-free 3D viewing. The good news is that the glass free 3D viewing will not be limited to Apple TV only – it can readily be adapted for iPad and iPhones as well.

So, is it time to take the next step in 3D TV evolution, and try glass free 3D viewing? Well, with the considerable endorsement of Apple, the 3D technology may just receive the boost that it needs and deserves. Lets us keep our fingers crossed, and see whether this new technology makes it in time for iphone 6, ipad 4 or other upcoming products.

The Apple launch affair was a stellar one. From highlighting the slimmer and taller design of iPhone’s latest variant to showcasing the new iOS6, it seemed like Apple had the structure and resources in place to prove all its doubters wrong. But a couple of weeks after its official launch, Apple looks like treading shores unknown.

What was essentially supposed to be the Big Debate between iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3 has been overshadowed by unified claims of a failed product launch in the form of iOS 6 Maps. In coming out with the iPhone 5, Apple decided to completely ward off with YouTube and Google Maps; two of the most popular app services amongst Smartphone users. And in came the all new iOS maps which have been developed from the ground up (legitimate spokesperson quote).

During the official keynote, the crowd was given a firsthand look at how the Maps service on iOS works. The vector-based map system has the benefits of Local Search for getting photos and reviews of places they are about to visit. Apart from the standard turn by turn navigation and reroutes integrated with Siri, the Maps have been made capable of making your drives easier and time-saving. Another wonderful feature within the iOS maps was it “Flyover” feature, wherein you can actually see a live time human eye image of how places look like while flying over them and also allows you to adjust viewing distances and angles as per your convenience.

Now anyone who would have watched the keynote would have no doubt been left impressed the strategic innovation and enterprise on Apple’s part for the Mapping system. But the actual live use of this app has given less than impressive results. Users have used various social mediums with images showing glaring defects in the service. From poor route suggestions to obscure satellite imagery, mismarked and mislabeled places to obliterated building and structures, the iOS maps have left a lot to be desired. Various technology experts have been eager to highlight that Apple on its part had pre-meditated the reaction the service would get and expects to rapidly improve the mapping with the user inputs it get. As bold as the move looks, it jeopardizes Apple’s stance of being oblivious to safeguarding user interest.

 

 

Now taking things into context, this is a short term risk Apple is willing to take for long term benefit of its users. And their engaging approach of constant improvement through real time user data is also commendable. But as I see it, maybe Apple would have been better off releasing their Maps service app with the next update on iOS6. That way, they would have been able to improve on an already worthy alternate option to Google Maps and gather more concrete data to avoid the widespread glitches in iOS maps is facing at the moment. By rushing into replacing a Mapping service which has proven to be reliable worldwide with a half-baked mapping and navigation service which is still in its nascent stage has put Apple in the face of risking wrath of its loyal yet massive consumer base.

The last month in the techie arena has been overshadowed by the patents wars between California based Apple Inc. and Korean heavyweight Samsung. In the aftermath of this decision, the Cupertino giants have unveiled their latest iPhone 5 with the all-new iOS 6 and a much more responsive SIRI. And in spite of the venom spewed by Android users and analysts alike, the response to Apple’s newest gadget has been nothing short of overwhelming as Apple received 2 million pre-orders within 24 hours of launch. However, the unfavorable ruling has left a bad taste in Samsung’s mouth who has devised a series of Anti-Apple video commercials depicting the Galaxy S III as a far superior phone.

This has triggered a cyber war of sorts with both the legion of fans from both sides defending their favored product. What has gone unnoticed is the gradual emergence of Windows phones from the shadows of these two dominating OS’s. Nokia had been the biggest sufferer since Apple and Android handsets flooded the market as the Finnish mobile manufacturer was left digging at the heels of latest technologies. So much so that one could be forgiven for assuming if Nokia phones were actually competing for a market share. But instead of taking the easy route and jump on the same bandwagon as other brands, Nokia decided to re-invent their flagship handsets on Microsoft Windows OS. And even there have been a few major drawbacks in it with the lack of apps and operational glitches, WP8 promises to iron them out.

Looking at some of the major features available in the three Operating systems, I observed a few favorable factors inclined towards the Windows phone. One of them is the video-chatting – while iOS and Android have their own specific software, a WP8 is going to use a Skype for the same purpose, which is considered one of the best software for video calling. It will also allow seamless Facebook and Twitter integration for getting status updates, photos, contacts etc. Even the messaging service on a WP8 is comparable to that in iOS and Android. And unlike either one of them, a WP8 uses an organized icon grid structure for better arrangement of notifications and icons. And the Redmond based unit has been signing licensing agreements to make sure that Windows 8 becomes a safer OS for manufacturers in the future. But in spite of these advantages, there are a few weaknesses that the Windows Phone suffers from as well. Features like Browser sync, Voice Commands and Media streaming needs to improve a lot.

With the launch of Lumia 820 and 920 nearing and HTC WP 8X and 8S also being unveiled recently just reflects that even major manufacturers are willing to migrate to the Windows OS. If Microsoft can address the niggling weak points by the time WP8 reaches users, the Windows 8 OS is capable of operating on a level playing field with iOS and Android from Google.

So the much awaited iPhone 5 has finally been launched after Apple’s powerhouse victory over Samsung in the patents infringement lawsuit. The US giant’s latest offering had been hyped up to no extent by company’s PR and tech analysts alike. So does Apple’s newest iPhone really justify the hype preceding it? In my humble opinion, not really!

I start first and foremost with the design. The various designs leaked for the new iPhone depicted an overhaul job with sleeker lines and a bigger screen. Well, it does have a half an inch lead screen as compared to its predecessor iPhone 4S but that is about it. Apple, who takes pride in innovation, has just about done the opposite. The design is staple Apple and if anything it looks like an elongated version of the 4s. So no brownie points for the phone’s make. Even the Camera hasn’t been upgraded from the 8 MP with the only addition being the Panorama feature. Maybe the much anticipated Optimus G would have something to say about that. But it’s not the exterior design that is the USP of the phone but what it runs on. The iPhone 5 comes with the 4G LTE enabled iOS 6. Instead of me going over the details, it better you get it from the official Apple website here.

 

Now without trying to sound like I am bashing Apple, we have to look at the cold hard specs available. There is nothing revolutionary or path-breaking about the latest iPhone. In fact, overall it has come as a major disappointment. Most of the features except the iCloud are majorly available in major high-end Android handsets. I do not believe in accepting blatant reshuffling being termed as innovation and I think any Smartphone user would have the same opinion. Sadly, the Apple Samsung lawsuit is just a precursor to how things will get even uglier between the Smartphone giants as just a day after its release, Bloomberg Business weekly has speculated Samsung and HTC to now sue Apple over 4G LTE and ADC communication patents. Even Apple’s co-founder Steve Wozniack has given a nod of disapproval to the recent verdict stating patents and technologies should be shared to bring the best products for consumers.

 

Apple’s act of dragging its competitors into lawsuits is not helping anyone. They may gain a financial and moral victory for trivial patented rectangles but the bigger picture is that it’s a depressing regression of innovation.

I had not planned to update the blog for a few more days but my view on this mammoth war between two of the technology giants was something I had to get off my chest. The Android market has been a boon to mass consumers since its inception in the mid of 2010. It was a viable option for technology-craving customers to have an application rich phone which is on par with iPhone and its successors. And unlike an iPhone, an Android OS based phone did not actually burn a hole in consumer pockets. Plus with the LG LTE Smartphone’s raking up millions in sales in US and due for launch here, it’s good times ahead for Android enthusiasts in India.

It has been pointed out from the preset that Apple had duly informed Samsung that the patents used in the design and OS of its flagship products was blatant copying of Apple’s own patents and therefore violation of their intellectual property. The after-effects has resulted in Apple coming out on top in the court of law with Samsung proven guilty of infringement of Apple’s innovative patents and ordered to pay Apple damages amounting to a whopping $ 1 Billion ! Senior spokesperson of Apple has welcomed the verdict highlighting that this “Patent Lawsuit” was about values and a voice against duplication of innovation while accusing Samsung of being obstreperous in heeding Apple’s warning.

I for one was bored of the ubiquity of Apple and Samsung and that is why I opted for an LG Optimus 3D P725 Smartphone. That’s because I appreciate the R&D and effort LG is putting in bringing these handsets rather than Apple iPhone replicas.

Well that must have been a bit boring to read, somewhat like a news article. But in effect, what it means is that there would be major question mark on the authenticity of Samsung and its best selling Samsung Galaxy S III and may result in a major setback for the Korean giants. On one end, you do feel hard done by what Samsung has suffered but violation of patents is never the way forward. I do agree that there were some shady claims by Apple regarding “drop down menu” and “Pinch and Zoom” features which are ubiquitous in almost all the major touch-based handsets.

Any Android lover might be thinking that “Apni to lag gayi re Mamu!” but the verdict might just be positive for us as a consumer. You may ask why? And my answer is that Samsung will have to come up with actual innovation to regain from this and it opens up an avenue for companies like LG who have been working vigorously on being the market leaders in the next generation LTE (Long Term Evolution) phones. I have already told you guys about my love for my sister’s LG Optimus LTE2 Smartphone. And with all the hustle-bustle for patents, you would not have to worry about plagiarism as far as Patents are concerned as LG holds a World Record for that.

On an ending note, I would like to quote, “Copying is an art, but the success derived from it is shortlived….” No pun intended!!!!

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