About Ollie Green

Have been working as a freelance writer for the past few years and have found a comfortable spot writing about what I love best. Fit in nicely with the Android crowd but can respect both Apple and other mobile competitors.

Website: https://olliegreen.net
Ollie has written 77 articles so far, you can find them below.

New FAA Mobile Policy Prompts one day Kindle Sale from Amazon

kindle-fire-HDX

To celebrate the new FAA mobile policy that allows electronic mobile devices to be powered on through all stages of flight, Amazon are putting their Kindle tablet range up on a one day sale today.

The 7 inch variants for the Kindle Fire HDX, Kindle Fire HD and Kindle e-reader tablet will all receive a 15% discount off of their original prices for one day only, bringing their original $229, $139 and $69 price tags down to $195, $118, and $49 respectively.

There are a few rules to the FAA mobile policy deal to stop frantic early Christmas shoppers from taking advantage of the nice gesture from Amazon, including a one discount per order deal.

Unfortunately, this deal is only available in the United States and you have until the end of today, Monday 4th November to purchase a Kindle device at this price.

If you’re looking for a decent priced tablet in time for Christmas and aren’t sure whether to spend it on a Kindle device, a Nexus 7, or something else entirely, Amazon’s 15% discount may be just the right thing to help you make a decision.

The new FAA mobile policy will also mean you’ll be able to enjoy your Kindle Fire tablet or e-reader whilst flying around the world, which is pretty nice too.

Source: AndroidAuthority

 

Samsung’s Flexible Phone Might not be Galaxy Note 3

download

Despite previous reports, the upcoming flexible phone from Samsung may not be a variant of the Galaxy Note 3 after all. According to Money Today, a Korean outlet, the flexible device we’ll soon be able to get our hands on will in fact be more similar to the Youm prototypes Samsung showcased earlier this year.

This would mean that the handset wouldn’t have S Pen capabilities and perhaps not any of the specifications in the current Galaxy Note 3.

The most likely candidate for Samsung’s flexible phone could be a prototype that we saw earlier this year at CES- it was a handset that had a slight curved screen so that part of the display could be seen from across the room when face up.

The design purpose of this is so that owners can see notifications on the small strip of screen that stretches out to the side instead of having to walk up to the phone and stoop over it to see notifications.

In terms of inner hardware, Ameblo, a blog from Japan reportedly discovered a GFXBench benchmark entry that could belong to the Samsung flexible display device.

According to their report, the hardware include a Snapdragon 800, a full HD display and Android 4.3.

There is no real proof to either of these reports, so we’ll have to wait a little while longer to find out just what Samsung has planned for their flexible display smartphone, and whether it will manage to beat the other flexible smartphones on the verge of being announced.

Source: AndroidAuthority via Money Today

Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition – Software, Specs, Features, Price Review

galaxy-note-10.1-2014-edition

If you didn’t know already, the brand new Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition will be landing October 10th. If you’re considering purchasing or pre-ordering a new Galaxy Note 10.1, read on to find out more about this year’s 10 inch tablet from Samsung.

 Specifications

No one was complaining about the hardware in the Galaxy Note 10.1 from last year, and it managed to pack quite a punch in the market thanks to a good combination of software features and heavy-hitting hardware. The display quality wasn’t winning any races though, and Samsung has redeemed itself with the 2014 Edition. This year’s 10.1 tablet will have a decent 2560×1600 resolution Super Clear LCD display, giving the tablet a PPI of 299, exactly spot on with the Nexus 10.

The tablet will also have a beefy 3GB RAM, and Samsung’s homegrown Exynos 5420. According to rumors, Samsung may once again split things up depending on the network model you’ve purchased. For example, the LTE version will land you with a quad-core 2.3 GHz Krait 400 CPU, whilst the 3G version will come with the Exynos 5420, which is powered by a big.LITTLE quad-core 1.9 GHz Cortex-A15 & quad-core 1.3 GHz Cortex-A7.

Both of these variants will have enough oomph to get through anything the Android operating system is currently capable of, which is great, because in terms of software, Samsung’s TouchWiz overlay is probably the most demanding out there.

Software

The S Pen is still a very important part of Samsung’s vision of the Note series of devices, and whether you used the S Pen on last year’s Galaxy Note 10.1 or not, Samsung have made sure that this year you have more reasons than ever to use it.

We’ve seen many of the S Pen features already on previous handsets, and all of these features will be available on the S Pen software suite on the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition. These features include the likes of Air Command, Action Memo, Scrapbooker, Screen Write, S Finder, and many other tools we’ve seen on previous Note devices.

A new feature to the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition is My Magazine- this is a Flipboard style built-in app that allows users to organize social feeds, news they are interested in and other snippets of content into a personalized virtual magazine. We’ve seen this kind of software elsewhere now, such as on the HTC One, so it’d be interesting to see Samsung’s own take on it.

Build Quality

One thing that really turned me away from last year’s Galaxy Note 10.1 were reports of a terrible squeaking, plasticy feeling that was always present when holding the tablet in your hands. It seems Samsung have worked on this, and this year round they have introduced a similar design to the recent Galaxy Note 3.

The 2014 Edition Galaxy Note 10.1 will have a textured stitched back cover which should hopefully lend itself as a squeak and creak free experience. As with many new iterations of smart devices, the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition will be lighter and have a thinner profile than it’s predecessor.

Pricing and Release

Samsung and other Samsung Experience shops at partnered retailers will start taking pre-orders for the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition on the 27th September, and will release the tablet on October 10th. For $549.99 you will be able to grab yourself the 16GB version, and for $599.99 the 32GB version. When compared to the Nexus 10’s cheap cut price, it’s a hard thing to jump for, so Samsung are attempting to offer more for their slightly more premium prices. Samsung will be offering benefits like 3 months free of Hulu Plus and SiriusXM, and one year of free Boingo Hotspot access through it’s Galaxyperks scheme.

With a similar price to Apple’s latest iPad, the purchase of a Galaxy Note 10.1 will come down to how much you can benefit from the tablet’s features. This year round, Samsung have improved many multi-tasking features such as Multi-Window and included newer S Pen features on top, so if you prefer this over the stock experience of the Nexus 10, I believe you’ll find it to be a worthy buy.

 

Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition Hits Stores October 10th

galaxy-note-10.1-2014-edition

This years Galaxy Note 10.1 has previously been speculated to release on a date close to the release of the Galaxy Note 3 and the Galaxy Gear, and just as the hype slows down for the Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy Gear combo, Samsung have now officially announced details on this year’s Galaxy Note 10.1 and it’s release date.

This year, the Galaxy Note 10.1 has been named the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition and it will be available to own from October 10th onwards.

Pre-orders for the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition will open up tomorrow, on the 27th September, and will be available from Samsung, Best Buy, Amazon and Walmart, among other retailers.

The new tablet will cost $549.99 for the 16GB version and will come with the TouchWiz UI, along with the whole S-pen suite found in other Note devices, such as the Galaxy Note 3.

This year’s Galaxy Note 10.1 will have a screen resolution of 2560 x 1600 (299 ppi), 3GB RAM, a  Quad-core 2.3 GHz Krait 400 in the 3G model, and a  Quad-core 1.9 GHz Cortex-A15 & quad-core 1.3 GHz Cortex-A7 in the LTE model, giving it plenty of oomph to be capable of using  the demanding software features Samsung is renowned for, such as Multi-window.

Source: bgr

Samsung Admits Galaxy Gear ‘Lacks Something Special’

galaxy-gear

Along with many other smart watches, the Galaxy Gear has been expected for some time now, and while we all wait for manufacturers to put more emphasis into the wearable smart tech market in the near future, we’ve got to look at what today offers us, and to be quite frank, there really isn’t that much to offer.

Surprisingly, even Samsung has admitted that their new Galaxy Gear ‘lacks something special,’ and it seems that even they aren’t happy with the capabilities wearable tech can offer us right now.

According to Korea Times, a Samsung official has said specifically:

“We’ve acknowledged that our Gear lacks something special. With more investment for user interface and user experience, Samsung devices will be better in terms of customer satisfaction.”

Personally I don’t see the need for a smart watch right now, and I feel similarly to the Samsung Official above, but it’s clear Samsung has only just begun with the Smartwatch market.

It seems as if the Galaxy Gear was almost a test run to see if consumers were happy to purchase a smartwatch along with a smartphone, and according to Samsung, the Gear is  “receiving a warm response.”

There’s no doubt that we will see more smart watches in the future by Samsung, and competitors will of course jump in to try and get a bit of the action, but the question is- When will smart watches actually be worth it for us as a consumer?

It’s hard to say, but with the pace smartphone technology has evolved over the past decade, we could all be using Smart watches very, very soon.

Source: Engadget

Motorola Has Plans For New Moto X Tablet

nex-moto-x-tablet

Motorola has somewhat improved it’s reputation with the launch of it’s new Moto X range, but despite selling 100k Moto X handsets per week, it’s history with tablets like the Motorola Xoom usually doesn’t leave a positive experience in people’s minds.

The X00m tablet wasn’t specifically a bad tablet, but it wasn’t received well and that’s unlikely to be forgotten. However it seems that this year’s lineup of Motorola handsets has sparked confidence in the Google owned company because CEO of Motorola, Dennis Woodside, has told Engadget in an interview that his company has plans to release a new Moto X tablet.

He didn’t give any information on any release information though, and the subject hit a stop after Woodside was asked about a release date. It seems that Motorola’s plans for a tablet device are probably still in their early stages right now, but a future Moto X tablet is likely. Just like the Moto X handset, the tablet could become part of the personalized Moto Maker service.

Personally I think a new Moto X tablet could be a good addition to the new Motorola family, and hopefully it will fit in well with the Android crowd.

Source: VentureBeat

Is it Worth Upgrading to the Galaxy Note 3?

galaxy-note-3-is-it-worth-upgrading-to

Samsung has just announced the brand new Galaxy Note 3, and it’s bigger, better and more powerful than it’s predecessor. The Note 2 was and still is a beautifully powerful device, so making an upgrade may not be an easy choice. Whether you’ve got a brand spanking new Galaxy S4 in your pocket or you’re still running about with a tiny less-than-4-inch Gingerbread budget smartphone, read on to find out whether it’s worth upgrading to the Galaxy Note 3.

 

Price

The first thing that should be looked at without a doubt is the price- there’s no point trying to convince those around you that it’s a worthy purchase if it’s not even within your own budget, so if it isn’t within reach, perhaps the still impressive Galaxy Note 2 may be a good choice.

No final details have been given on price, but UK retailers are gearing up to offer it on contract for between £40-51 (around $70/month.) This is pretty expensive for a smartphone and there’s no doubt that the off-contract price will be equally expensive. Verizon will start pre-orders tomorrow– hopefully we’ll find out pricing details from them.

Is it worth upgrading to the Galaxy Note 3 with a price as high as this? Well, that comes down to how much you truly want the Note 3 experience…

 

Display

This is probably one of the biggest reasons why anyone would upgrade to the Galaxy Note 3. The Note 3 has a massive 5.7 inch display, making it 0.2 inches larger than it’s younger brother. That extra 0.2 inches may make or break somebody’s experience- 5.5 inches was already too much for some, but for others 5.5 just wasn’t enough. Whether that extra 0.2 inches will change the way you use your phone or not will only really be able to be tested once there are demonstration models in phone shops.

In terms of display quality, the Galaxy Note 3 has a very stunning 1920×1080 HD display with 388 pixels per inch, so despite the screen size increase, Samsung have still managed to improve the picture quality on the Note 3. If screen quality means a lot to you when it comes to smartphones, this is certainly a reason why it may be worth upgrading to the Galaxy Note 3.

 

Camera

On paper at least, here’s another area where the Galaxy Note 3 is much superior to any other smartphone out there.

Thanks to the overpowered Snapdragon processor, the Galaxy Note 3 will be capable of recording in ultra HD 4K resolution. 4K is a fairly new recording technology that has a image quality four times that of 1080p. When it comes to actually watching footage back in 4K, unless you’re willing to fork out a lot of money for a decent 4K TV, you aren’t really going to benefit much from this.

However, more and more 4K devices are starting to reach the market and it won’t be too long before 4K takes 1080p’s place as the industry standard. Plus, there’s always bragging rights.

 

Hardware

Let’s put it this way- whatever you want to do on an Android operating system can be done on the Galaxy Note 3- in fact it could probably still be done if you took out a couple of gigs of RAM and underclocked the processor by 800MHz. Similarly to the Samsung Galaxy S4, there will be two variants of the Galaxy Note 2 and they will both be released in different markets. The LTE version will have a quad core snapdragon processor clocked at 2.3GHz, whilst the HSPA version will have Samsung’s home-grown Exynos Octa eight core 1.9GHz processor.

Both variants will have a beefy 3GB RAM, and will come in 32GB and 64GB storage capacity versions. As usual, the Galaxy Note 3 has Micro SD support.

 

Battery

We all know just how important battery life is, and Samsung did a pretty good job on the battery within the Galaxy Note 2. The Note 3 isn’t a different story. The Galaxy Note 3 will come with a 3,200mAh battery as opposed to the Note 2’s 3,100mAh battery. Although there is more miliampere-hour in the Note 3, we’ve got to take into consideration the improved hardware and larger, higher resolution screen on the Note 3. Personally I think battery life on the Note 3 will feel similar to that of the Note 2’s battery life, which is very decent for a smartphone.

 

Software

Samsung has worked hard to bring out even more software utilities that sound cool but no one ever really uses after the first few months of owning the phone. This time round, Samsung has put even more emphasis into the S-pen. There aren’t any software features on the Note 3 that feel like they get in the way, and it doesn’t feel as if Samsung have tried to add more features just for the sake of making the Galaxy Note 3 sound more attractive to customers.

Overall, I think the Note 3 software experience will be very smooth and will ultimately feel like any other TouchWiz Galaxy phone with a few new upgrades and adjustments.

 

Design

Samsung have gone with a strange faux-leather design for the Galaxy Note 3. It is both different and going to take some time to get used to. I actually prefer it to the plasticy feel of the rest of the Galaxy range, and I hope that it feels nice and comfortable in the hand.

 

Summary

Is it worth upgrading to the Galaxy Note 3? Well that’s a question for you to decide the answer for. If you’ve purchased a smartphone within the last year and are strapped for cash I’d advise against it. It’s nice to have a new piece of tech, but if it’s not going to prove to be a handy addition to your life there really isn’t any reason for it. If you do have enough money at hand, feel free to delve into the Galaxy Note 3 experience, it certainly is a very fine smartphone, and if you’re using an outdated smartphone, the jump to the Note 3 will feel heavenly. 

New 4.4 Kitkat Android Advert Pokes fun at Apple

kitkat-advert

The ongoing rivalry between iOS and Android has spewed out pointless lawsuits, sales restrictions and attempts to bring down the other mobile OS at any cost, but one thing that has kept me interested is the way those in the mobile world have managed to poke fun at each other through TV commercials and social media posts.

The surprising new announcement for Android 4.4 Kitkat has brought forth a lot of chit-chat, but with that aside, Nestle know just how to announce their friendship with Android through a new commercial that clearly makes fun of the way Apple, and in particular Jonny Ives, announce their new products with meaningless buzzwords and technical blubber.

In the past we’ve seen various attempts to make fun of Apple by those on the Android train since Samsung’s and Apple’s hardware rivalries. Samsung has been at the head of the scene and has now made countless parody ads, marketing campaigns and other announcements that indirectly slate Apple.

Nokia and Microsoft have even tried to get involved with the games by releasing their own commercial that makes fun at the rivalry between Apple and Android fanboys.

I’m glad to see that rival companies can have a laugh like this and hopefully we’ll see more of this kind of rivalry in the future instead of the lawsuit kind.

You can watch the Kitkat Android advert below.

Alcatel Follows Up with Fourth IDOL Phone: The Idol Alpha

idol-alpha

Alcatel has been very busy making enough handsets to stop itself from feeling like a tiny unnoticeable blob within the huge Android crowd this year, and recently we are hearing more about what these handsets are.

So far we already know about the rest of the IDOL range, but it seems Alcatel want to give the spotlight to their main man in the IDOL series, the IDOL Alpha.

The Alpha is the fourth announced IDOL handset and is looking to play the role of the flagship for the IDOL range, despite it having a bigger brother, the IDOL X.

In terms of hardware, the IDOL range so far has not been incredibly impressive, and this trend is carried on through the IDOL Alpha. The Alpha sports a 1280×720 4.7 inch IPS LCD panel and runs Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. Inside the Alpha hides a so-far un-named 1.2GHz processor and a 12.1 megapixel camera. RAM details were not specified, but judgding by the IDOL X’s similar hardware, it’s likely the Alpha will have 1GB. The IDOL Alpha will also come with 16GB storage and a 2000mAh battery.

So in terms of hardware, screen size and quality, the new IDOL range really doesn’t sound that spectacular. In fact, I doubt Alcatel have much up their sleeves in terms of software either.

Alcatel does have a few things that no other current Android handset has though, and these are all on display in the IDOL Alpha.

For example, the IDOL Alpha will be protected by a reinforced Dragontail Glass, a type of glass that does a good job at not cracking and manages to stop fingerprints smudging up the screen. Sounds nice, but unless you really like eating sticky things like doughnuts whilst using your phone,  I don’t really think this will sway you to purchase the IDOL Alpha.

Secondly, the IDOL Alpha will have a Black Crystal touch panel. I can’t seem to find out what this actually is, but once again I doubt it’s something worth getting excited for.

Finally, the Alpha will also have pretty light-up edges that react differently depending on what you are doing to it. For example, it may change color when you charge your phone, and it might blink a different color when you receive a notification. This is an inventive feature that allows you to see how your phone is doing without you having to stoop over it.

I commend Alcatel for trying to please the smartphone crowd by attempting to reinvent some of the features that all smartphones have, and although the hardware is far from the high end, with a decent price the Alpha could prove to be a decent purchase.

Source: Androidcommunity

Pressy Kickstarter Campaign Hits 300k in three days

pressy-kickstarter-campaign

The minds behind Pressy, an attachable physical button that can be added and programmable to open any Android app with a press, originally asked for a fair $40 thousand on Kickstarter, but since then funding for it has exploded. So far, the total funding for the device is very close to $300k, and with a huge 47 days remaining, there’s no doubt that Pressy will reach a massive $400 thousand, making it over pass it’s goal ten times over.

We’ve seen a lot of success for Android-based products on the Kickstarter store, for example, OUYA the Android powered mini console received a whopping $8.5 million in it’s funding stages, making it the most funded project on Kickstarter. Whilst it’s unlikely Pressy will reach this goal, it’s looking to be a very successful and popular project, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it reached over $1 million in funding.

What’s great about this is that Pressy is designed by just two guys who quit their day job to work full time on the project. I don’t recommend any one else to quit their day jobs just yet, but I really hope that this sparks inspiration for aspiring designers and inventors to make their ideas heard on Kickstarter.

Android is such a versatile operating system and Pressy shows that we really can do what we want with our devices. Hopefully we’ll see more things like this while I eagerly wait for my very own Pressy button.

Source: Kickstarter

Samsung UK Offering Competition To “Win what will be unpacked” on September 4

Galaxy-note-3

Samsung is going to be unveiling something on September 4th at their event in Berlin, but what they’re revealing is currently unknown. Well, we all know they’re going to be unveiling the Galaxy Note 3, but will they be releasing anything else on this date? Many have speculated a Galaxy Gear release on September 4th as well.

No matter what is released, someone has the chance to win it all in a Facebook competition posted from the Samsung UK Facebook page. Whilst this isn’t all too exciting unless you’re feeling extra lucky today, there are a few bits of information to be taken from their competition page.

Firstly, according to the competition, something ‘groundbreaking’ will be unveiled on September 4th. Of course the first thing to think of is the Galaxy Gear. This device is definitely worthy of the groundbreaking title, but seeing as Samsung thinks highly of itself, perhaps it’s just talking about the Galaxy Note 3?

Another thing to take in to consideration is that the page says ‘something’ will be unveiled, instead of some things. Maybe i’m looking into it too much, but this could mean that we may only see one item release on September 4th, and we all know the Galaxy Note 3 is coming.

Right now I’m taking my bets on just the Galaxy Note 3 releasing, but there’s still that voice in the back of my head that keeps telling me that the Galaxy Gear’s time is now.

Either way, with all this talk circulating around the Galaxy Gear, there’s no doubt that both the Note 3 and the Galaxy Gear are coming soon.

Source: AndroidAuthority

Do we Need Wearable Tech?

wearable-tech-smartwatch

Google Glass was most likely at the forefront of what is probably the next step in personal communication technology. We’ve had wearable sports gear for a while now, but this year we’ve seen a huge increase in activity for wearable technology that does more than just sports.

Recently we’ve heard a lot about Samsung’s Galaxy Gear, and a release for this product may even hit some time this year.

Other lesser recognized players in the mobile market are even considering building their own wearable tech, including companies like ASUS, a business that has managed to provide decent new ideas but have failed to gain much interest in the public, such as the tablet/notepad Transformer series of devices.

What do these manufacturers see in the wearable tech industry? Would you feel comfortable wearing Google Glass or a strange smartwatch out in public?

I could imagine many people would feel as if wearing wearable tech before it’s time would brand them as a ‘geek’ or a ‘nerd’ and many would probably give them strange looks as they walk by. The truth is however, that we use our smartphone so much that if a comfortable and easy to use design and user interface system was designed for wearable tech, we’d likely all fall victim to using it.

Our smartphones are practically attached to us 24/7 as it is, so it only makes sense that we ‘wear’ it to make things even easier and quicker to access.

This movement into wearable tech territory reminds me of nothing more than a sci-fi universe with gear and gadgets similar to what is seen in movies like Star Wars, and in fact, it somewhat makes these types of movies look outdated.

Are you happy with this move in technology or would you be more comfortable if things were to stay as they are?

Android Phone of the Future Could be Powered by Eco-Friendly Silk Chips

There’s no denying the fact that our increased usage of electronic devices has caused a rise in waste management problems, and if we don’t seek to solve these issues we may soon run out of space to dump our old phones or PCs.

At the University of Illnois, Professor John Rodgers has recently talked to the Associated Press about their work on a new technology that uses thin silk as a replacement to the standard electronic chip.

As a naturally occurring material,  the silk used to hold circuits can easily be disposed of and will dissolve many times quicker than that of standard electronics equipment without causing any damage to the environment.

John Rodgers showed a simple radio circuit the size of a thumbnail that works as intended and also “self destructs” by itself thanks to the silk it is printed onto.

His ambitions for the future of what he has called the born to die project are to build upon the designs of the silk to create circuit boards capable of holding the innards of a mobile phone and then work on a mobile phone that is completely bio-degradable.

Judging by the simplicity of the circuit used in the video demonstrating the project compared to the complicated innards of a smart phone, it may be a long while before we see a fully bio-degradable Android phone of the future. I do think that this is a very positive step towards the future and it’s certainly something that could help the Earth in a big way.

 

Galaxy Note 3 Release may be Slowed by Production Issues

Galaxy-note-3

One problem that manufacturers and consumers will always share are production problems, and every now and then we see up and coming tech that doesn’t make it to market at the time we’ve expected, at least not in the quantity that is demanded.

This may be the case with Samsung’s 2013 phablet, the Galaxy Note 3. The reason behind the production problems lie with the new OLED display being used with the G Note 3 that uses flexible technology to ensure a more durable “unbreakable” screen. According to Asia Economic, Samsung are trying hard to make the OLED panel part of the new Galaxy Note 3 but currently the expected demand for the third G Note far outweigh the amount of flexible OLED displays currently expected to be available at launch.

This means Samsung may have to move to older screen technology to ensure demand is met, although perhaps we’ll still have a chance of getting the flexible OLED display later on along with the other Galaxy Note 3 variants rumored to hit the market.

source: bgr