Sunday, August 04, 2013

The Android expandable memory rip-off

The Android expandable memory rip-off

One of the advantages Android phones always had over the iPhone was an external memory slot. The second is a removable battery. The first one seems to be either disappearing (notice that the "Official" Google phones and tablets no longer have external memory slots). The simple reason for this is that they are no longer supported.

I'm not going to go into the why - differences in external microSD card speeds etc.

Instead, what pissed me off was that I could not install "Real Racing 3" onto my mid-range LG Optimus L9 Android phone. This is not because the phone is not supported, but because the Game needs at least 1.6GB of disk space for the downloadable installer. Now the the LG L9 comes with 4GB of internal storage, but unfortunately only 1.7GB of that is "user available". This is fairly common with mid-range Android phones.

- Posted using BlogPress

Saturday, March 09, 2013

Disappointing Android tablet

A few weeks back I bought a Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7 inch. I had been quite happy with the first edition of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7 inch, but it is getting a bit long in the tooth for an Android tablet, and I wanted to move up to something faster and lighter. I didn't get an iPad Mini mainly because of price and because I have an iPad anyway.

My first disappointment was that the price dropped by between $20 to $30 a week to the day after I bought it. It wasn't worth returning because of the hassle and a restocking fee from the online store I'd bought it from - the price you pay for shopping online with free shipping.
Now minor price drops are a fact of life with electronics.

My second disappointment was when I wanted to get the game "GTA : Vice City" for my new Samsung tablet. It is listed as "not compatible" with the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7 inch - never mind that most of the previous Samsung Galaxy Tablets are compatible (including the current Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 inch). This really peeved me since my old Sony Xperia Play android phone is compatible. Now of course I have bought this game for my iPhone/iPad, but I wanted to play it on a bigger screen.

Ironically the game is compatible with the "Google Asus" Nexus 7 tablet, which I briefly looked at prior to buying the Galaxy Tab. I had wanted a tablet with an expansion slot, but it seems like they are becoming more and more rare. Also Android 4.x and above seem more aimed at tablets (and phones) without expansion slots.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

2012 the year of Mobile Gaming

This year has really been the year of mobile gaming. Traditional console gaming languished while people waited for the next generation consoles from Microsoft and Sony in 2013. The number of quality games on the iOS (and Android) platforms increased rapidly as the hardware improved. I must confess to playing more games on my iPad than anything else. From "Flick Soccer" to "Infinity Blade 2", and more recently "Road Trip 2" I spent many an hour playing on the iPad. Other games like "Zombie Highway", "Road Trip 2" occupied chunks of my time on the iPhone, the latter being particularly addictive. As for traditional game consoles, I finally bought a PS Vita earlier this year, although I must confess that I've spent more time playing the Sony PSP game "GTA: Liberty City Stories" on the PS Vita than any PS Vita title. That might change now that I've got "Need for Speed: Most Wanted" for the PS Vita. I started playing it last night, or tried to. Ironically this game was a lot easier to get into on the iPhone. Once I got into the game though, this is the best racing game so far for the PS Vita. It is like a mobile "Burnout Paradise" - very good.

Posted from Blogium for iPhone

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Emergency Power

Well, Hurricane Sandy has come and gone, and left a trail of destruction in its wake. I noticed a CNET article about preserving your smartphones battery life when there is a power outage - I haven't read it yet, but thought I'd give my take, since I've been without power for close on 36 hours. I am typing this on my iPhone (if one if my Android devices had data service I would be typing on it, especially one with a physical QWERTY keyboard). Naturally the one of the main tech problems is keeping a smartphone charged. My current "solution" consists of a number of rechargeable battery packs of varying vintage and capacity. I initially bought them for convenience - being able to use my smartphone while charging it is a major plus. Also when traveling they come in very handy. The first is an older APC "Mobile Power Pack" with a powered USB port which I used to use with my iPhone 3G several years back. It can top up an iPhone but I don't think it has enough juice to charge from a low battery. Then I have two 5200 mAh "Mobile Juice Pack Ultra" rechargeable batteries with single powered USB ports (both have enough power to charge an iPad, but I haven't tried that yet) and a small LED flashlight which I have found so handy I usually keep one on my bedside table. I was so impressed with the first one I bought the second one, which has a different brand name. Both of them come with various connectors and adapters, but a USB charge cable can be plugged directly into the USB port. The "PowerGen" branded one came with its own USB charger,and both have a micro-USB in port for charging. The PowerGen one also has a neat feature that it turns off once the device being charged is fully charged - this works with my iPhone 5, so I assume it would do the same with other smartphones. These two batteries are about half the width of an iPhone, an inch shorter, and at least twice as thick and fairly hefty. They have 4 blue lights which give an indicator of charge when the button is pressed. This same button also needs to be pressed to initiate a recharge when connected to a smartphone/tablet. This same button turns on the LED flashlight when pressed twice. They charge from USB, and if the power hasn't come on by this afternoon, I'll try my luck at topping one of them up from a DC to USB adapter I have for my car.

Posted from Blogium for iPhone

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Hey Apple, my iPhone screen is shrinking

Every day my iPhone screen seems to be getting smaller and smaller. This is especially so after playing on my iPad or even reading my Kindle.

So, right on top of my list for features for the iPhone 5 would be a 4 inch (absolute minimum) screen.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Commute Tech

After commuting into the city for over four months, I've noticed some interesting Tech in use while people are commuting.

Since I travel on both a "suburban" railway as well as the (NYC) subway, there is a fairly large range of technology being used. Most of it is for entertainment, a lot for drowning out fellow commuters or the squealing of the wheels, and then there are people with deadline, or simply making use if time.

Probably more than half of the tech is for audio (iPods (from the shuffle to the Touch), iPhones, Android phones, and other devices. A new trends seems to be watching videos of some sort, usually on iPads or iPhones, occasionally laptops. People also play video games on iPod Touches, iPhones and iPads, and Android phones. Since a lot if the games are in both iOS and Android, sometimes it's difficult to tell if someone is playing a game on an iPhone or an Android phone, unless of course the phone has a 5 inch screen.

Last but not least, reading is still popular, with a large percentage of people still reading actual books. I haven't done a proper count, but there are usually about the same percentage of e-Readers - Kindles and Nooks - in sight as actual books- it all depends which train I'm on I guess. Not many people read on iPads or other color tablets. I've only noticed one or two Kindle Fire tablets, but they are difficult to pick up, having a very generic look to them.

Sometimes there are whole bunches of people with iPads. The people who work are usually on laptops, or using pen and paper. I've seen a few people reading the New York Times on an iPad, and once a very non-nerdy looking guy reading comics in an iPad. Otherwise it is books, games and movies.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

New Year, New Security Suite

Well , I've finally replaced the ZoneAlarm Internet Security suite on my machine at home. Last year I was caught out by an auto renewal payment I had forgotten about. I canceled that soon after, but was stuck with another year of ZoneAlarm. Then I switched my secondary machine to Norton Internet Security and was duly impressed. On Windows XP NIS runs virtually unnoticed. Its resource hogging ways of several years ago have been changed to run in idle time.

My main gripe with ZoneAlarm was that it continuously ignored autoupdate settings, and often I'd want to do something which required a lot of system resources to find that an update was running.

Posted from Blogium for iPhone