Monthly Archives: June 2013
Patent lawsuits are passé when it comes to Apple and Samsung by now, with the two companies seemingly being involved in some form of legal action against the other at any given point of time. The very latest ongoing feud between the two giants of the tech world was about the technology involved in making the most recent smartphones, i.e. the iPhone 5 and the Galaxy S III. The U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul S. Grewal has shot down Apple’s attempt to add the Galaxy S 4 to the newer devices under investigation for patent infringements, however, as the judge opined that adding yet another device to the ongoing case would simply be a waste of court time and resources.
Fans of Google Reader will know that Google is terminating the service this Monday. Although this news came as a major disappointment for many people, there are plenty of alternatives to Google Reader that perform just as well. But before moving on to another service, you should probably use the Google Takeout feature to download a zip file of all your data on the Google Reader.
The best alternative to Google Reader right now is Feedly. Feedly is not a new service and has been around for quite some time. Over the years it has evolved into a feature rich RSS reader with a strong customer base. Feedly is available for both iOS and Android, as well as a web client.
Another reader that deserves a mention is the Digg Reader. The core RSS reading functionality isn’t available for everyone yet and is currently in beta, but the team behind it is working tirelessly to get it ready. The Digg reader has a clean user interface and supports integration with various read it later services as well as social networks. Digg reader is available as a web app and an iOS app, with an Android version coming in the next few weeks.
Feedbin is a paid alternative, and has almost all thebasic features of the Google Reader. Feedbin’s API powers a lot of third party apps which help keep all user feeds in sync. There is no iOS or Android app as of now, and the web version of the services costs $2 per month.
According to latest rumors, Samsung is still not done updating its Galaxy line of smartphones. Samsung has been quite busy lately developing and releasing Galaxy S4 companion devices, and it seems there could be a companion device for Galaxy Note as well.
This rumored device has been named Galaxy Memo, and it will come with a 4.5 inch screen. It is being said that Galaxy Memo will target the mid range market and will have modest technical specifications. Samsung aims to continue its extensive array of phablets by building this device, which is actually a little smaller than the Galaxy Note. Support for S pen is also expected, based on the leaked images.
Galaxy Memo is expected to have a TFT LCD screen, with a pixel density of 489 ppi. It will be powered by a 1.4 GHz quad-core processor, which is not too exciting as there are better processors in some new Samsung devices. Other than that, there will be an 8 megapixel rear camera, and 2 GB of RAM in the device. The specs of Galaxy Memo obviously are nothing to write home about, but it should be a decent device in its category. It will be running on Android 4.2.2.
There’s really not enough information about this device to confirm if it is real or not. The only source of this rumor are a couple of images, and hence it should be taken with a grain of salt.
Last month, in its I/O 2013 event, Google had announced its plans to bring the two current Android smartphone flagships from Samsung and HTC – the Galaxy S 4 and One, respectively. The three tech majors have finally gone ahead and brought the two vanilla Android powered smartphones to the world, and now you can get the Google editions of the Samsung Galaxy S 4 (and HTC One) from the Play Store right away. Read on to know more about them!
Samsung has finally unveiled the LTE Advanced version of its Galaxy S4 phone in Korea. The past view days have seen some images and benchmark tests of this device leaked, so the announcement is hardly a surprise for anyone.
The device will be available only in South Korea for now, with the SK Telecom carrier. The LTE-A technology will enable the device to reach speeds which are twice as high as normal LTE phones. The US carriers currently don’t have plans for LTE Advanced. Samsung is in talks with various American carriers to start rolling out 4g LTE-A plans in the US, but until that materializes, US users will have to wait.
Samsung’s co-CEO delivered a statement in which he said: "Samsung maintains a unique position for delivering LTE innovations as a provider of the parts, devices, and equipment required to deliver next-generation 4G LTE services. The introduction of the Galaxy S4 LTE-A demonstrates Samsung's desire and ability to provide consumers with technological innovations that take advantage of increased network speeds to deliver richer and fuller experiences."
LTE-A technology will enable the device to make data transfers at 150 Mbps. To put that in perspective, a standard LAN connection can only go up to 100 Mbps. The phone will have a 2.3 GHz processor, 5 inch Super AMOLED screen, Android 4.2.2 and a 13 megapixel camera. The phone will be available in blue arctic or red aurora colors.
The Galaxy S4 was hinted at by Samsung during the launch of Galaxy S4. S4 Active is basically a prettier variation of S4, with stripped down specifications. But unlike the S4, this device is dust proof and water proof, ideal for trekkers and users who travel a lot.
The device delivers solid performance because of the quad core Snapdragon 600 processor clocked at a frequency of 1.9 GHz. This powerful chip helps provide a snappy, lag free experience while also maintaining a decent battery life. The phone runs on the latest Android version, which is 4.2.2 Jelly Bean.
The two biggest differences in specifications between S4 and S4 Active are the screen and camera. While the S4 had a full HD AMOLED display, S4 Active has a 4.99 inch HD LCD TFT screen. Although the screen can be considered to be a downgrade from the AMOLED display, this screen performs a lot better in outdoor conditions. The camera is 8 megapixel instead of 13 megapixel in the S4.
Samsung has obtained the IP67 certification for Galaxy S4 Active, which basically means the phone is completely dust proof, and remains unaffected by water when immersed up to the depth of 1 meter. The 2600 mAh battery proves adequate in handling the power demands of the phone and lasts well over a day. The battery is removable, so it can be replaced whenever required.
All in all, the Galaxy S4 Active is a highly durable phone and is perfect for people who spend a lot of time outdoors.
As the patent battle drones on between Apple and Samsung, another round has been won by Apple after a Tokyo court decided that Samsung had infringed upon Apple’s bounce back patent. This comes as a blow to Samsung because earlier this year the United States Patent and Trademark office had ruled that this particular patent is not valid. Although in a later ruling the same agency decided that certain aspects of this feature can be patented. The ruling will affect the sale of older Samsung phones
The bounce back feature a much touted Apple feature which enabled pages to bounce back when the user scrolls to the end. Apple claimed that Samsung had copied this feature on their smartphones. Although Samsung subsequently replaced the bounce back feature with a blue line to denote the end of page, there are older Samsung devices still in circulation that have the disputed feature.
Last year, the Tokyo District court’s ruling went against Apple when it decided that Samsung does not infringe on Apple’s music and video synchronization technology. Another court decision that went against Apple was when Apple was found by a South Korean court to have infringed upon two wireless patents that belonged to Samsung. The same court however decided that Samsung did infringe upon the bounce back patent.
This patent war between the top to smartphone manufacturers has been going on for over two years now. Apple has largely dominated the litigation so far, its biggest victory being the US court verdict last year which awarded Apple over $1 billion dollars in damages.
Putting a rest to the last week’s rumors about the $20-million partnership, Samsung has recently announced that it will give away 1 million free copies of Jay-Z’s new album ‘Magna Carta Holy Grail” to its galaxy users 72 hours prior to its release on the 4th of July at 12:01 am. The users of Galaxy S III, Galaxy S4 and Galaxy Note II will be able to receive the music via a customized application “Magna Carta”.
On the other hand, Jay-Z too launched his album in a three minute Samsung commercial aired during NBA finals that showed the Rap Singer Jay-Z in a studio recording and brainstorming with a cast of characters along with Rick Rubin, Pharrell Williams, Nas, Timabaland, Drake, and Swizz Beats. In the commercial, Samsung’s tagline “The Next Big Thing” flashes on screen.
Complete details about this deal haven’t been made public yet, though it is being said that Samsung has paid $5 for each copy of the album, which effectively means that Jay-Z has already sold 1 million records before the album is even released. It is not clear thought whether or not this means that the album will be labeled platinum simply because of this deal.
The application “Magna Carta” will be available to its users in end of June, which will enable Galaxy users to download the full album. However, the users cannot share the music until its official release
Samsung is planning to launch yet another variation of its Galaxy S4 smartphone this month. The co-chief executive of Samsung, JK Shin, has told the press that this model will be released for the Korean public and will have advanced 4G internet feature. Advanced 4G internet means that the phone will be able to transmit data twice as fast as the original model.
Samsung has reportedly been talking to carriers across the world about launching this version of Galaxy S4. In his interview with Reuters, JK Shin refused to divulge any details about the carriers that might get this phone. However it’s clear that the phone will appear in South Korea before anywhere else.
The technology used in these phones is an upgrade over the conventional LTE (Long Term Evolution) technology. This Qualcomm powered chip will use an advanced LTE technology to dramatically increase the data transfer speed.
Although Samsung is still the leader in the smartphone market, in terms of revenue generated, the recent downfall in its shares is discouraging. Another setback to Samsung was the cutback in sales forecasts for its flagship, Galaxy S4. This indicates that the smartphone market might have reached a saturation point.
So far, Samsung has not expressed any concerns over the fall in its shares, maintaining that the Galaxy S4’s sales have been far better than its predecessor’s sales. This is pretty much why Samsung has been releasing so many Galaxy S4 companion smartphones such as S4 Active, S4 Zoom and now S4 with advanced LTE.
Apple announced its new iOS 7 SDK (software development kit) at the WWDC recently, and one of the crucial features that caught tech watchers’ attention was the Game Controller API that’s part of the SDK. Apple hasn’t exactly been receptive to game controllers for the iPhone or iPad in all the years that iOS has been around, and this new development signals a paradigm shift in their approach to external hardware. 9to5 Mac have been doing some digging about all this, and they’ve managed to find some of the clearest details about this new API. Read on to know more about what this means for future iOS devices!