Archives for January 2015

Apple releases iOS 8.1.3

Apple today has released iOS 8.1.3, this update was not was not seeded to developers before being released to the public, due to it being a minor release. This update addresses a number of minor problems that have been experienced by some users such as passwords not being recognised when entering Apple ID passwords for FaceTime and Messages. 

The other problems this update addressed were related to spotlight not being able to display app results and there was a problem that prevented multitasking gestures from functioning on the iPad.

New configuration options have been added for education standardised testing. This update reduces also the amount of storage space required to perform an a software update, which will be welcome news for some 16gb iphone users who are struggling to free space up on their iPhones.

The next major up date is expected to be iOS 8.2. This will be a major update that contains WatchKit SDK software and a programme that enables the iPhone to integrate with the rumoured Apple watch, which could be coming as soon as March this year.So it would be wise to guess that this update could be  released alongside Apples watch.

Bad news for iOS what’s app users

WhatsApp_logo-color-vertical.svgFacebook the owners of What’s app have introduced the ability to share it’s connection with a chrome browser running on a desktop,laptop, tablet etc. This is all made possible by simply scanning a QR code with a smartphone that is located within the Whats app webpage on the Chrome browser. However this option is available to all the os’s except iOS.

WhatsApp have made a statement regarding this matter on their blog: “Unfortunately for now, we will not be able to provide web client to our iOS users due to Apple platform limitations.

“Our web client is simply an extension of your phone: the web browser mirrors conversations and messages from your mobile device — this means all of your messages still live on your phone.”

Its possible they might able to solve this by simply adding a barcode scanner to their iOS whats app application. Whether they can resolve this problem by doing this is anyones guess.  

If iOS users are desperate to use the whats app application they can do it by simply installing a programme called bluestacks. This programme enables you to run the Android os and its apps on a Windows and Mac pc.

Windows 10 is announced and its partly a blast from the past

windows-10-start-menuWindows 10 has been announced. It is largely a departure from its recent versions, that is windows 8 and 8.1 which tried to bring together mobile touched based devices and traditional personal computers. But this move proved to be widely unpopular move on there part, because operating the touched based apps proved to be a clunky and unpleasant experience for the user also these versions of the os were highly confusing to navigate. The abolition of the start screen did not help matters. Microsoft a year later released Windows 8.1 as an attempt to win customers back, they made some  navigational improvements such as giving the user the option to boot strait into desktop mode and by putting the Power and Search Buttons next to the start Start button. These subtle changes to the os and some other minor tweaks were not enough to effectively win people back.  The poor user uptake was reflected in the poor interest from app developers. 

Windows 10 is a departure from the previous two versions of the os.Its going to come with a newly named browser and it will bring back some of the best aspects of Windows 7 such as a start menu which makes navigating the os less of an headache. Windows 10 is also very intuitive it adapts to what device you are using, if for example you are using a tablet it will make the touch based tile apps centre stage but if your using a desktop or laptop it will make the desktop mode the centre point of the os like it did in Windows 7. Its worth noting that its the first os to port a voice assistant to its desktop os. Apples Mac os have not got around to it yet but expect it soon.

Windows 10 will merge all the competing software platforms into a single platform, so this means that every app will work on every device running the new os.This will make everything simpler for app developers and it will give the user a wider selection of apps to choose from. Windows 10 will be able to even run universal apps on the xbox that will also be able to run on all other newer windows devices. These apps will offer a sort of follow you anywhere computing experience across phone and PC: a mobile version of Microsoft’s Inbox app for email, using Outlook, Calendar, a Photos app, a People app, Maps, and more. Basically they’re core apps that will cover the entire bases for everyday communication and the bad news is that it looks like they are only going to work on the new Xbox One. Xbox users will also have the ability to stream the content of the xbox to your laptop in Windows 10 which will open up even more possibilities for the end user.

Microsoft have another thing up its sleeve its called HoloLens. Its a headset that allows you to see holograms overlaid in the real world, that will integrate with your physical places, spaces, and things

The good news is that previous customers going back as far as Windows 7 will get a free upgrade to Windows 10. But after a year if they don’t upgrade they will lose that privilege. In practice it should be offered free for all its customers like Apple does for its Mac os customers. This move could further alienate older users and it could even encourage them to move to competing operating systems such as Linux, Mac or Android.

Windows 10 will be released later this year. But if you want to try it now its available in beta mode, which means its has not had all its bugs ironed out of it and it has not been fully finished, so don’t expect everything to work,heres the link 

3 mobile abolishes roaming in two more countries in April

Three-UKThree have announced that they are adding more countries to its feel at home scheme that abolishes roaming in certain countries. Spain and New Zealand are now joining the list of countries in April, taking its country total up to 18.

Three Uk have built a niche market with regards to this scheme.  When three adds Spain to its list of roaming exempt countries in April its likely to prove popular, because Spain is likely to be topping the charts once again with more than 13 million people traveling to Spain on a yearly bases.  

Dave Dyson, Chief Executive at Three, said: “Feel at Home is unique to Three and offers freedom from unfair roaming charges. It is already hugely popular, with more than a million of our customers enjoying its benefits since launch. Adding France last year and Spain in 2015 means the two most popular destinations with British holiday makers will be covered. Currently, 49% of our customers’ overseas trips are to Feel At Home destinations. With the addition of Spain and New Zealand, that should rise to about 65%. “However, my ambition continues to be to eliminate excessive roaming charges globally and we’re working hard to open up even more opportunities for our customers to stay connected and enjoy their phones whilst they’re abroad.”

These two new destinations will join France, Switzerland, Israel, Finland, Norway, USA, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Macau, Australia, Italy, Austria, Hong Kong, Sweden, Denmark and Republic of Ireland. All of three customers are eligible for this scheme. Those who are on pay monthly, Pay-As-You-Go, SIM-only and mobile broadband have the freedom to use Feel At Home within the limits of their current Three price plan allowance, as long as international roaming is activated⁵. Calls and texts to non-UK numbers will be charged at reduced roaming rates. Tethering is not included. Pay-As-You-Go customers will require an add-on. Data is also capped at 25gb, which applies to all customers.

A website called TripReporter have recently reviewed Three’s Feel at Home service and they have praised the network for identifying the need for fairer roaming charges and for being the first provider to abolish roaming in selected countries.

A new 4inch iphone maybe in the works

A iphone 6c that comes with a 4 inch display is possible later on in the year. With the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus iPhone Apple has made the long-awaited step toward larger displays. But there is a considerable minority of users that are dissatisfied with the new display sizes. There are enough users to warrant 4-inch display. Its worth noting that last years iPhone 5s does simply lye better in the hand.  Currently there are conflicting rumours around to whether or not they are going to make the device or not. 

On the 6th of January evidence emerged that apple is not working on another 4-inch iPhone. According to a website called Feng, sources within Apple’s supply chain have made it clear that Apple have not made “any new production tasks” related to a 4-inch device.  However an earlier report in December states that they are indeed going to produce a 4 inch iphone, this is according to a Taiwanese parts manufacturer. The source was initially also credited on a website called Feng. More information regarding this debate to whether or not they are going to release the 4 inch version can be found on Appleinsider,Macworld and gforgames.

If demand is sufficiently large and Apple can realize that even a small screen can achieve great things for the user, it will most probably release the iphone mini after September 2015. Steve Jobs did think that the four inch version was  perfectly adequate when he was alive, but it remains to be seen whether or not he would have took the same view today.

Why Android could be more prone to future virus attacks

Android symbol 1Thomas Fox-Brewster who is from a website called Forbes states that Google has stopped pushing security updates to the WebView tool if you are using Android 4.3 Jelly Bean (or any earlier flavour of Android).

This all happened without warning.  There are 949 devices that are running these versions of the Android os that can be affected at anytime.

Over 60% of Android devices which connected to Google Play between Dec 30 2014 and Jan 5 2015 (via Google’s Android dashboard) ran the older version of Android. All of these devices will no longer receive the security updates.

Google when asked refused to answer this question.

Reference: Appalled security researchers and Forbes