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Sep 30, 2014

Windows 10 Preview to Launch for Users Tomorrow

Microsoft confirmed at the Windows event in San Francisco that consumers would want to give the new Windows 10 a try would be able to do so starting tomorrow thanks to a free Technical Preview as part of its new Windows Insider Program.

This new program will kick off tomorrow and will bring a downloadable version of Windows 10 preview for desktops and tablets, while servers will get their very own flavor at a later time. Other devices could also get an early build of the operating system, but no other specifics have been provided. The preview version will include many of the features that we heard about in the latest few months, including a Start menu, multiple desktops, a revamped command prompt and other features that are supposed to improve the desktop side of the platform.

At the same time, Microsoft has also presented a revamped Start screen, but the focus is clearly on the desktop, as the company wants to boost productivity as much as possible, as its two top executives said during the event. The preview version will be free for everyone, but keep in mind that Microsoft expects you to submit feedback and thus help the company improve features before the debut of the final product. Feedback forms will be available everywhere you look, including the Start menu, and will prompt you to submit your thoughts on specific features right after performing specific tasks, such as sending emails.

Windows 10 Preview will be part of the new insider program
Image credits to Microsoft

Microsoft’s New Windows Will Be Called Windows 10

Microsoft has just announced at a press conference in San Francisco that its new operating system would be called Windows 10, contrary to all rumors that have reached the web in the past few months.

Surprisingly, Microsoft isn’t calling its new OS version Windows 9, as everyone believed, or Windows Threshold, as some people close to the matter hinted, but Windows 10 in what’s pretty much the most surprising decision for the “new Microsoft.” Terry Myerson, head of the OS division at Microsoft, said that Windows 10 would run on as many devices as possible and will even span new categories, hinting that it could even power small devices such as smartwatches. “Windows 10 will be familiar to enterprise end users whether coming from windows 8 or Windows 8,” Myerson said, clearly hinting that many requested features would come back, including a Start menu.

"Windows 10 will be compatible with all the traditional management systems used today,” he added. "Windows 10 will be our most comprehensive platform, ever. Windows 10 will deliver the right experience at the right time." Of course, Microsoft’s decision to skip Windows 9 and go directly to Windows 10 is a bit surprising, but the company suggested that it needs a fresh start that would clearly signal the debut of a completely revamped Windows version.

Windows 10 is Microsoft's new OS name
Image cedits to Litabi

AMD Strategy to Set Off to Free Itself from Intel and It Has Succeeded

Advanced Micro Devices had some management problems back in 2009-2010, and it didn't get out of them even after it hired Rory P. Read as CEO in August 2011. But the Chief Executive Officer immediately set about cleaning house, and changed the company's direction too, for good measure.

In a nutshell, the man's idea was that Advanced Micro Devices would be better off if its products stopped being compared to Intel's all the time. Understandably enough, everyone was skeptical about AMD's chances of freeing its brand from automatic association with Intel's products. Especially after the fiasco of the 8-Core Bulldozer CPUs that didn't live up to their hype (to say the least). Fast forward to 2014, though, and the company has pretty much already managed it. Sure, it had to drop high-end, enthusiast-grade CPUs/APUs completely, but its other moves seem to be paying dividends.

The APU business unit

Accelerated Processing Units are essentially CPUs with full-on GPUs integrated into them, from the Radeon line, instead of meager iGPs (integrated graphics processors) like what Intel still offers. Basically, AMD has managed to merge together the mid-range CPU with the mid-range GPU. While it did that, it managed to kill a large part of NVIDIA's customer base too, since not only did it have to give up low-end add-in boards, but some mainstream adapters too. That's why, today, mainstream graphics cards are what would have qualified as upper-end boards a few years ago. Sure, APUs still don't sell nearly as well as Intel CPUs do, as a whole, but last I heard, AMD had managed to increase its CPU share by a little bit. As for graphics, the company definitely stole some of NVIDIA's market share.

The Opteron A-Series server CPUs based on ARM architecture

AMD has shown real support for the ARM architecture on the big data / data center markets. Intel refuses to even consider the notion, but AMD released the Seattle A-Series Opteron CPU back in August. The chip is based on ARM Cortex-A57 cores, which fully support 64-bit instructions. More importantly, AMD has just launched a demo of Apache Hadoop running on a system based on this particular processor. With this, the company has placed itself squarely at the head of the ARM server industry. Until now, ARM-based processors only made it in a handful of microservers, which themselves came to be in no small part due to AMD's efforts.

And yet, there seem to be no signs of the heated AMD-Intel rivalry sparking on this side of the field. Just like it seems to be dying on the CPU market. In fact, the only rivalry involving AMD that still seems to be going on is the one with NVIDIA, and that's precisely on the matter of add-in video boards.

What it all means

Some may say it's a bit too early to tell, but AMD has really managed to avoid a potentially serious, if not fatal, slide downwards. In fact, it appears to have reformed itself into something a lot more self-determined that it was before. It took a lot of work, and the firing of quite a few people to pull it off, but everything seems to have worked out. Now we just have to wait for those fabled 2018-bound hybrid x86-ARM processors and we'll really have something to swoon over. Assuming the mishap of Bulldozer doesn't repeat, that is, but I think AMD can avoid the same hype implosion.

AMD Opteron A1100
Image credits to AMD

Nexus 6 Confirmed to Pack 5.9-Inch QHD Display, 13MP Camera and 3200 mAh Battery

Google upcoming flagship smartphone, the Nexus 6 made headlines in the last couple of weeks, as rumors about the handset’s specs continue to leak online.

According to previous reports, Google’s Nexus 6 will boast a huge 5.9-inch capacitive touchscreen display, which is supposed to support QHD (2560 x 1440 pixels) resolution. The information has just been confirmed through another source, so Android fans expecting to upgrade their older Nexus smartphone should start thinking whether or not they want a device with such a large display. Even though Nexus 6 originally leaked as a 5.2-inch smartphone, it looks like Google decided that’s not enough of an upgrade over the previous model. We do think that Google might launch two versions of Nexus 6, one with a large 5.9-inch QHD display, which will be the company’s flagship smartphone, and another one with a 5.2-inch display aimed at those who can’t afford the flagship device or favor smaller screens.

However, the chance of Google launching a smaller version of Nexus 6 does seem slim now that everyone is only talking about the Motorola Shamu, the large Nexus 6 model. Anyway, the folks over at AndroidPolice report they have been given inside info on the Nexus 6, which confirms the smartphone will indeed sport 5.9-inch QHD display with 496ppi (pixel per density). Design-wise, the smartphone will look exactly like the Motorola Moto X with only a few differences given the slightly larger chassis.

Nexus 6 will be compatible with Motorola's turbo charger

For example, the Nexus 6 will feature black stereo speakers in the front, while the power on/off button and the dual volume key will be placed farther down on one side of the smartphone. The smartphone is likely to be made of high-quality plastic, but it will feature an aluminum frame, just like the new Motorola Moto X. On the back, Nexus 6 will pack a 13-megapixel camera with autofocus, dual-flash ring and OIS (optical image stabilization. The smartphone will also come with a 2-megapixel camera in the front and a huge 3200 mAh battery to make up for the power hungry display.

Speaking of which, sources familiar with Google Nexus 6 plans claim the smartphone will support Motorola’s turbo charger, which means users will be able to charge the phone’s battery for 8 hours of usage in just 15 minutes. As expected, the Nexus 6 will be the first smartphone to ship with Android L operating system out of the box and the mockup attached shows the handset’s new homescreen that reflects this change.

Nexus 6 mockup
Image credits to AndroidPolice

Best Anti-Virus Solutions for Windows 7 SP1 Revealed [av-test.org]

Windows 8 already comes with Windows Defender turned on by default, but as far as Windows 7 users are concerned, turning to a third-party software solution to protect their PCs is the only solution.

A new round of tests performed by German institute AV-TEST reveals that Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (SP1) customers have a wide array of anti-virus solutions to choose from, some of which can provide maximum protection in most of the cases. The July/August round of tests put Bitdefender’s anti-virus products on the first place, with a maximum score of 6 points out of 6 in all three main categories, namely protection, performance, and usability. The same top score was also achieved by Kaspersky Lab, McAfee, Norton, and Bullguard, all of which managed to perform impressively well in this new test.

Free solutions not the best choice

If there’s anything important that can be seen in this chart is the performance of freeware anti-virus solutions, all of which obtained really disappointing scores in this new tests. 

Panda Cloud Free is the software solution that scored the best in the free category, gaining 6 points for protection, 5.5 points for performance, and 5.5 points for usability.

Avira received 6, 4.5, and 6 points, respectively, while Avast did even worse and scored 3.5 points for protection, 4.5 points for performance, and 6 points for usability.

AVG Free, which is currently one of the top freeware solutions on the market with millions of downloads, is the freebie that’s ranked the worst, with 3.5 points for performance and protection, and 5.5 points for usability.

Microsoft’s Security Essentials again at the bottom of the pack

Unsurprisingly, Microsoft’s Security Essentials solution, which is available with a freeware license for those running Windows 7, performed really bad and received the second worst score after Norman. MSE obtained 0 points for protection, 4.5 points for performance, and 6 points for usability. Of course, protection is the most important chapter, and given MSE’s score, some might obviously want to try out a different security solution. Microsoft Security Essentials is available with a freeware license for users of all Windows versions before Windows 8. MSE has recently dropped support for Windows XP, while in Windows 8 the app has been improved and rebranded as Windows Defender.

Windows 8 comes with Windows Defender turned on by default, and the app is automatically disabled once the user deploys a third-party anti-virus product, no matter its name.

Bitdefender continues to be the leader of the anti-virus market
Image credits to AV-TEST

Watch Windows 10’s Top New Features in Action [Video]

Windows 10 is the surprising name of Microsoft’s new operating system, but apart from the designation, there’s nothing new except from the features we’ve been reporting about for the last couple of months.

The Start menu will finally be brought back and together with it, Microsoft is also introducing a new search option that allows users to look for information not only locally, but also online. Of course, Bing powers the search option, just like it was the case with the similar feature on the Start screen. At the same time, Microsoft is introducing multiple desktops, which are great for those working with multiple apps at the same time and want to keep things organized on their screen. Windows 10 Preview will be available for download tomorrow, but the company warns that since it’s an unfinished product, it’s natural to expect bugs, issues, and other problems after you install it.

Of course, it also wants users to send their feedback and help the company improve performance of the new operating system before it hits the market in spring 2015, so make sure that you submit any bugs you find to be fixed by company’s engineers. The video demo was presented by Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore and includes only a handful of features, so to see all new things in Windows 10, it’s better to download the preview build.

Watch Windows VP Joe Belfiore talk about some of the features in Windows 10, like the new Start menu, multiple desktops, and improved multi-tasking. Learn how you can be part of creating the best Windows yet with the Tech Preview and the Windows Insider Program.
Video credits to Windows/Microsoft

Google's Project Ara Modular Phone Will Let You Hot-Swap Everything Except the CPU and Display

Project Ara started as a bold project inside Motorola Mobility a few years ago, but after the company has been acquired by Google, the program went under the search giant’s umbrella.

Even after Motorola has been sold to Lenovo early this year, Project Ara remained a Google program and the company does seem to invest quite a lot of resources in order to bring it to consumers. The end result should be some sort of starter kit that contains various modules that can be inserted inside a frame to form a smartphone. The $50 (€35) worth of components represents certain parts of the smartphone like display, CPU, Wi-Fi and battery. Each of these modules can be swapped for a better one when an upgrade is available, which means you won’t need to switch to a new smartphone each year.

If Project Ara proves to be successful, it should be used by “six billion people,” Google claims. The good news is that we might be closer to a market release than we might think, as Google confirmed all Project Ara modular phones will run a modified version of Android L.

The cheapest Project Ara kits will cost only $50 (€35) at launch

The first Project Ara kits are expected to go on sale sometime in early 2015, but details on exact release date should become available close to launch. Now PhoneBloks blog site reports Project Ara’s head, Paul Eremenko shared more details on the modular phone, which is supposed to arrive in January 2015. According to Eremenko, those who purchase a modular smartphone will be able to hot-swap any of the components except for the CPU and the display. This means that you will be able to upgrade your phone without having to turn it off. The display and CPU components will be swappable as well, but you will have to turn off your smartphone in order to do it. The fact that the majority of the modules are hot-swappable is made possible by the modified version of Android L, which is developed by Google in collaboration with another company called Linaro.

It’s also worth mentioning that additional modules will be purchasable through a dedicated online store, which should be up the moment Project Ara kits go on sale. Speaking of which, the first fully functional Project Ara prototype is expected to be showcased at the second developer conference of the program, which is scheduled for this December. Here is hoping Google’s modular phones will be made available to consumers sooner rather than later.

Project Ara Kits
Image credits to Google
LCU14 : Opening Keynote & Project Ara
Speaker: George Grey
Location: Grand Peninsula D, Hyatt Regency San Francisco Airport, Burlingame, CA, United States
★ Session Summary ★
★ Resources ★
Zerista: http://lcu14.zerista.com/event/member/137700
Video credits to Linaro OnAir

Samsung Explains Galaxy Note Edge Display, Highlights Major Features via Infographic

Introduced along with the Galaxy Note 4 early this month, Samsung Galaxy Note Edge could outsell the many flagship smartphones already available on the market, if only the South Korean company didn’t see this device as “limited edition concept.”

That means Samsung plans to launch the Galaxy Note Edge in limited quantities, so you will only be able to get it in some countries and for a much higher price. Although info coming from sources familiar with the matter claimed there would only be around 1 million Galaxy Note Edge units available for purchase this year and that the phablet will not be launched in the UK and most of other European countries, Samsung introduces the phablet in more territories than it was original speculated. Availability aside, the Galaxy Note Edge was the star of Samsung’s Unpacked event earlier this month and even if it won’t outsell the Galaxy Note 4, the South Korean company will surely get rid of all the stock it plans to push into the market in no time.

In order to raise the hype around the Galaxy Note Edge, like that was really needed, Samsung has just released an infographic that shows 5 of the most important features of the smartphone’s display. For those unaware, Samsung Galaxy Note Edge comes with the same type of display as the Galaxy Note 4, but this one is curved. It’s also a bit smaller at 5.6-inch, but it supports QHD (2560 x 1600 pixels) resolution as well.

The Edge Screen can be personalized to show your own drawings

The smaller secondary display on right side called the Edge Screen, allows users to add frequently used apps in order to access them quickly no matter what you are doing. But that’s not all, as Galaxy Note Edge users will also be able to check notifications and messages while watching video or navigating. You can even personalize the Edge Screen with drawings using an S Pen, but you can also add images and texts that can be displayed on the screen instead of these drawings. The Edge Screen can also display useful information on stock trends, sports scores, news and twitter trend keywords through Ticker Board. The good news is that this type of info doesn’t really require a large display, which makes the Edge Screen perfectly suitable for displaying it.

Last but not least, you can even take advantage of Quick Tools, which provides access to essential apps and features through the Edge Screen at any time. As soon as the SDK reaches in the hands of developers, we’re certain the Edge Screen will be more useful to Samsung Galaxy Note Edge owners, but until then here are some of the most important features it has to offer.

Samsung Galaxy Note Edge Specs
Image credits to Samsung

Samsung Galaxy Note Edge infographic
Images credits to Samsung

Sep 29, 2014

MSI Releases Fanless System with Support for Up to Core i7 CPUs

It's one thing to say a computer is really efficient and silent compared to the competition, and another to put together a PC that makes absolutely no noise at all (which, by extension, means low TDPs across the board).

As it happens, Micro-Star International has created a system that makes do without any sort of active cooling, while still supporting Celeron, Pentium and Core i7/i5/i3 central processing units from Intel. Admittedly, you need to limit yourself to a TDP of no more than 35W in order for everything to work properly, and to not suffer a burnout or crash due to heat. If you do want a stronger performance though, you can pay extra for a system fan module. But that would defeat the purpose of the KingBOX MS-9A66 being made the way it was made.


The system is a lot closer to qualifying as a cube than many “cubic” desktops we had the pleasure (or displeasure) to see in the past. It backs the fourth-generation Intel CPU with DDR3 RAM (random access memory) and a single add-in graphics card. Assuming you choose to install one, that is. The system has a PCI Express x16 slot ready, but you'll have to buy a video card yourself, if the one in the GPU isn't good enough. If you do feel the integrated graphics processor (iGP) of Intel chips is sufficient for your needs (browsing, doc editing, media playback), you can use one of the two DisplayPorts on the back panel to link to a monitor or TV. That, or the DVI port. On that note, the PCI Express x16 slot isn't the only PCI technology available, three legacy PCI slots are included as well.

Add to that 100 G anti-shock protection and 1 gram anti-vibration and you have a pretty sturdy piece of work in your hands. Finally, storage can be provided via an HDD or CFast card. All of which can be easily maintained and cleaned, according to the company. Same for the RAM. All thanks to the thumbscrews that can be removed, to let the top cover slide open.

Availability and pricing

Both are details that MSI neglected to include in its official press release. What it did specify was that the KingBOX MS-9A66 has scalable performance (comes naturally with the broad CPU support), support for both consumer and industrial applications (9 to 36 VDC input), and easy configuration (through an MSI API).

Press Release:
MSI, the leading brand of embedded computers recently released a new industrial system, KingBOX MS-9A66. KingBOX MS-9A66 is a powerful yet fanless system featuring with its scalability, ruggedness, and versatile expansion capability. Outperforming other fanless systems with the powerful, scalable Intel 4th Gen scheme, KingBOX MS-9A66 meets demanding performance requirement while keeps the system cool with its superior heat radiation design that allows it work fanlessly and reliably. The high-performance and calm design along with its rich I/O and the versatility of expansion slots make it a perfect computing system for most of industrial scenes, such as intelligent transportation, facility management, environment monitoring, security automation, utility automation, and many more.
Reliability has always been the first concern for industrial system. With the increasing adoption of complicated automation system and application software, keeping the system reliable without sacrificing the performance has become a more important target for mission-critical applications. MS-9A66 surpasses all the system of its kind not only in performance but also in many intelligent ways it's designed:
  • Scalable High Performance: scalable CPU options to support the highest level of performance that fulfills any demanding application requirements.
  • Hassle-free Fanless and Rugged Design: fanless design to minimize downtime and maximize MTBF, ensuring the long-term hassle-free operation with silence. Also rated to withstand a wide temperature range and against heavy shock and vibrations.
  • Wide-range DC Power Input: wide-range DC power design that allows 9 to 36 VDC input, catering to any industrial application scenes.
  • Superior Expansion Versatility: rich expansion options that come with DIO, 1 PCIex 16, and 3 PCI slots, offering versatile capability in system integration.
  • Easy Configuration via Friendly API: easy setup and configuration via MSI's self-developed friendly API, facilitating your installation and maintenance.
  • Smart Mechanical Design: easy maintenance case design that allows quick access to internal by 2 simple steps-unwind the thumbscrews and slide the top cover to open.

Product Features:
  • Fanless design to support Intel 4th Gen CPU (up to 35W)
  • Scalable 4th Gen Intel Core i7/i5/i3, Pentium, and Celeron processor
  • Easy maintenance (HDD, memory, CFast, expansion slots) with smart mechanical design
  • Easy configuration via friendly API
  • 3 independent display with DVI-I and 2 DP
  • 4 expansion slots: 1*PCIe x16; 3*PCI
  • GPIO supports 5~24V for automation
  • 100 G anti-shock and 1 Grms anti-vibration
  • Wide range 9~36V DC power input
  • Support AT power mode
  • Optional system fan module available

Image credits to MSI

Microsoft Officially Teases New Name for Windows 9

Windows 9 preview will officially see daylight next week, and more sources claim that a completely new name for the operating system is very likely, as Microsoft is reportedly trying to create a new brand and capitalize on the popularity of its desktop platform.

Until now, there have been several signs that Microsoft could launch Windows 9 as just “Windows,” while a page that Redmond “accidentally” published this morning hinted that Windows TH was also possible, although it’s not clear if this could be used for the preview or the final product. Terry Myerson, head of the OS group at the software giant, teased the new Windows 9 name in a photo he emailed to Microsoft watchers Tom Warren and Mary Jo Foley, confirming that the company was indeed preparing a new name for the operating system. Of course, no specifics were provided, but Myerson said in his email that no name had been selected yet and more information would be provided on Tuesday.

Windows or Windows TH?

The leaked Windows 9 screenshots that have recently reached the web indicate that Microsoft could call the testing version of the operating system “Windows Technical Preview,” a name which might also suggest Redmond’s intention to drop the numbering naming scheme and go for a simpler approach. People close to the matter have also hinted that Microsoft wants to use the Windows designation for all platforms and not just for the desktop version in an attempt to sell more devices, be they smartphones or tablets. Windows TH rumors, on the other hand, do not align with speculation towards a Windows brand, but confirm that Threshold might not be just an internal codename for the next operating system.

No matter the name, the preview build of Windows 9 due in early October will be mostly aimed at enterprises, but will still bring quite a lot of features that consumers want, including a Start menu, multiple desktops, and a notification center. Microsoft will hold a press event on September 30 to share more information on Windows 9, but surprisingly, the company won’t stream it online. Instead, blog posts and other information will be published on its websites when the event comes to an end. The preview build, on the other hand, will be released to the masses in early October, so everyone should be able to give the new OS a try in approximately seven days. The first preview will come in the form of stand-alone ISOs, while future updates will be delivered via a new integrated update system, without the need for a clean installation.

Terry Myerson teasing the new Windows name
Image credits to The Verge

Windows 9 Will Launch as Windows TH

While Microsoft continues to remain tightlipped on the next Windows version, a new page presumably prepared for the debut of the preview version and most likely scheduled to be published on Tuesday went live today revealing a few unknown details.

Windows 9 might in the end launch as Windows TH, which probably stands for Threshold, the codename that Microsoft has been using since it started work on the new operating system. The page is called “Windows Technical Preview for Enterprise” and holds information about the preview build that Microsoft is expected to launch in early October, as well as links to find more information on the new features implemented in the operating system. Of course, it’s hard to believe that Microsoft accidentally revealed the name of the new OS as the company most likely tried to stir up interest for a product that’s already causing quite a lot of buzz online.

Windows TH just for the preview

At this point, it’s not yet clear whether Microsoft plans to use the Windows TH designation only for the preview build that it plans to unveil in early October or it actually wants to keep it for the stable product as well, but chances are that it would come up with a different name before April 2015. Surprisingly, the leaked Windows 9 screenshots that reached the web this month indicated that Microsoft might actually call the operating system “Windows Technical Preview,” so this could be an indication that Windows TH could also be used for the final product. As you can see, there are lots of vague details right now, but Microsoft will finally break the news on Windows 9 next week during an event in San Francisco.

Few new details revealed

The page that Microsoft “accidentally” published today claims that “the next version of the Windows client will enable IT professionals to provide users with a familiar experience across multiple devices while enhancing security and manageability. It will also offer new and improved features that enable businesses to: defend against modern security threats, elevate employee productivity, embrace the mobile and cloud era, and enable upgrade without upheaval.” As you can see, no mention of new features such as the Start menu, Cortana, or multiple desktops, and the page once again confirms that the preview build is mostly about enterprises.

And still, we do know that the preview version of Windows 9/Windows TH will come with these features and many others, but the full list of tools will be unveiled next week by Microsoft itself.

Windows TH name confirmed on Microsoft's website
Image credits to TNW

Sep 26, 2014

Samsung Galaxy Note Edge Is “a Limited Edition Concept,” Only 1 Million to Be Shipped

Unveiled earlier this month along with the Galaxy Note 4, Samsung Galaxy Note Edge is not going to be a smartphone for everyone. Just like in Galaxy Round’s case, Samsung seems to have pulled another marketing stunt with the Galaxy Note Edge.

According to Samsung’s DJ Lee cited by ZDNet Korea, the Galaxy Note Edge is seen by the South Korean company as a “limited edition concept.” This information was not shared with the public back in early September when the phablet was revealed, which is why we think it was a simple marketing stunt. Samsung Galaxy Note 4 is only a few days away from its market release, but those who are waiting for the Galaxy Note Edge will have to exercise their patience a little longer as the device is expected to arrive later next month. Unfortunately, customers who want the Galaxy Note Edge won’t be able to get it if they don’t live in the few countries where Samsung plans to release it.

At least one UK-based carrier has confirmed that the Galaxy Note Edge will not be coming in this country. As a matter of fact, the phablet will not be available in the majority of European countries. Considering that Samsung plans to produce and ship just 1 million Samsung Galaxy Note Edge units, it makes sense for the South Korean company to not make it available in a lot of countries.

The Galaxy Note Edge will be launched in South Korean in October

That being said, the Galaxy Note Edge will initially be available in South Korean beginning next month, but it’s unclear in what other countries the phone will be released. We know for sure that some European retailers will probably reserve a certain amount of Galaxy Note Edge units next month, but they will probably be insanely expensive. It’s clear that the Galaxy Note Edge will be more expensive than the Galaxy Note 4, but the difference might be higher than anyone could have anticipated with some European retailers asking around €1000 ($1,280) outright for the phablet.

Samsung has yet to announce the suggested retail price for the Galaxy Note Edge, but given the fact that it will only be available in limited quantities, those who really want this device will probably have to pay a lot more for it. On the other hand, we wouldn’t be surprised if Samsung brings the Galaxy Note Edge to more countries next year if the smartphone is met with impressive demand. We’ll be keeping a close eye on this one, so stay tuned for more on the matter.

Samsung Galaxy Note Edge
Image credits to Samsung

HTC RECamera: 16MP Sensor, Super Wide Angle Lens, Slow-Motion Video Recording

The first images of the upcoming HTC GoPro competitor have been leaked online yesterday. In them we got to take a preview look at a device that looks reminiscent of a PVC pipe.

Apart from the first visual cues, there wasn’t much info about it in terms of camera specs. Thankfully, this has all changed today thanks to a report via Taiwanese website EPrice (as seen on G for Games). Apparently, the new HTC camera will take advantage of a 16MP sensor, will come equipped with slow-motion video recording, underwater recording capabilities and a 170-degree Super Wide Angle Lens. The rumor mill claims the product will be called the RECamera and should be similar to the GoPro HERO3+. However, the 12MP sensor will be replaced by a 16MP one in the HTC model.

Does this mean the RECamera will come equipped with 4K recording? Quite possible. In an interesting twist of events, I told you earlier that the HERO4+ leaked today and was apparently scheduled to make a debut on the same day that HTC would be holding its event in good old New York. So it appears the two competing cameras will be launched during the same day. What will you choose?

HTC RECamera will be unveiled soon
Image credits to Reddit

Samsung Galaxy TabPRO 10.1 Gains Official CyanogenMod 11 Support, Say Goodbye to Magazine UX

Before the super-hyped Samsung Galaxy Tab S AMOLED tablet doe, Samsung put most of its hopes and dreams of becoming top slate vendor on the Galaxy TabPRO and NotePRO lineup.

The lineup was unveiled back at CES 2014 and was marketed towards business users, as a worthy laptop replacement. After all, the tablets were powerful and fast and came with useful features such as multi-tasking and being able to set up separate profiles.

The Magazine UX interface annoyed a lot of people

However, one thing that users complained about was the inability of getting rid of the Samsung’s latest TouchWiz interface version, called Magazine UX. Soon after the slates launched, it became apparent that there was no way users could opt the UI out of their lives. However, for those of you who still crave the near-stock Android feel, we have good news. As of this week, the Samsung Galaxy TabPRO 10.1 is now officially supported by CyanogenMod 11. Owners of the maxi tablet can now download the software and enjoy the pure taste of Android, without Samsung’s own interference mixed in the soup.

CM11 is only available for the Wi-Fi version of the tablet

The new CM11 nighty build that has been made available for download currently supports the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 (Wi-Fi only). For the time being, owners of the LTE model will have to wait until a similar build is rolled out for their respective device. Installing the ROM, users will be able to take advantage of the latest Android 4.4.4 KitKat software. The build also offers features like CM theme engine, “Heads Up” notifications or spam notification filtering. We know the allure of Android 4.4.4 KitKat sounds pretty good to your right now, but before downloading the build, keep a few things in mind.

For starters, this is the first CM11 ROM for the Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 and it’s also a nightly build. This means it won’t be extremely stable and you’re bound to bump into a bug or two on the way (or even more). Some of them might not be bothersome, but others might put a damper on things. So if you’re not 100% sure your overall productivity or well-being won’t be affected, we suggest you abstain from making the transition to Cyanogen.

If this is not the case and you want to go ahead, you can go ahead and follow this link in order to download the CM11. As a side note, we should remind you, you’ll need to flash the Gapps package to gain access to the Play Store, Gmail Maps and all the goodness of Google apps.

CM11 is now compatible with Samsung Galaxy TabPRO 10.1
Image credits to Samsung

5.9-Inch Nexus 6 Without a Mini Version Is a Bad Idea

Since word about Google’s next Nexus smartphone surfaced, people have been wondering whether or not the information coming through various channels may be accurate.

 For those unfamiliar with the matter, the Nexus 6, which is supposed to be officially introduced next month, is likely to boast a large display. In fact, the Nexus 6 is said to sport a huge 5.9-inch display. The fact that it supports QHD (2560 x 1440 pixels) resolution is not what makes me question Google’s plans, but I think 5.9-inch for a Nexus smartphone is way too big. Nexus smartphones have always been popular among Android fans, especially due to their lower price if acquired through Google Play Store, but also because they run clean versions of the operating system. Phablets are also a smartphone category that has been on a roll in the last few years, but as the number of handsets with large screens increases, customers’ interest tends to drop.

I’m not saying a phablet may not be as popular as any other smartphone that gets launched on the market, but very large phones have a fewer pool of fans than standard ones. Obviously, the “standard” term for smartphones tends to get larger year after year, as handset manufacturers start abusing the size of the display and force customers to choose bigger and bigger phones. The good news is that there will always be other products you can choose from if you don’t like phablets. Every major handset manufacturer has learned over the years that they should cover as many price and size tiers as possible. Samsung has the Galaxy S and Galaxy Note, LG and Sony both launch mini versions of their flagship smartphones. Even Apple launched a 4.7-inch and a 5.5-inch iPhone so that it can cash in on as many customers as possible.

The idea of Google launching a 5.9-inch Nexus 6 device doesn’t sound surprising, but not following it with a smaller version would probably be a disaster for the phone’s sales.

Google may launch two different Nexus 6 smartphones this year

Personally, I doubt Google will want to favor only a fraction of its fans by launching a phablet and no other alternatives. Does this mean that we will see Google following Apple’s strategy and releasing two Nexus 6 variants? I sincerely do believe that Google will not choose to go with a phablet and not offer Android users another alternative. I’d rather tend to think that the search giant will launch a much smaller 5.2-inch Nexus 6 model, which was rumored several weeks ago, instead of going with only a 5.9-inch version. The 5.9-inch Nexus 6 is likely to have slightly better specs than the 5.2-inch version, such as the fact that it will support QHD resolution, but Google will want to keep the rest of the configuration similar to maintain customers’ interest.

Google has yet to announce when the next Nexus smartphone will be launched, but considering previous history, I would say that the Android L official release will be scheduled for October. Along with Android L, Google will also release the Nexus 6, so we only have about one month to wait for the company to reveal its plans. As many of you probably already know, the next Nexus smartphone will be manufactured by Motorola, but I’m not sure if the smaller variant, if such thing exists, will be made by the same company.

Internally known as Motorola Shamu, the huge 5.9-inch smartphone will be launched as Nexus 6 or Nexus X, in order to avoid a possible infringement on famous author Philip K. Dick’s intellectual property rights. Now we just have to wait and see how Google decides to play it next.

Motorola Shamu sized up against LG G3
Image credits to AndroidPolice

HERE Maps Is Pressuring Microsoft for a Better Deal on Windows Phone Development

HERE Maps has been around for more than 10 years, as part of Nokia. The good news for the company is that, even after the Microsoft / Nokia deal, HERE Maps still belongs to the Finnish company and has more freedom than ever.

The bad news for Microsoft is that after developing the Windows Phone version of HERE Maps, the company behind the navigation services announced it would launch similar apps on Android and iOS platforms. Why is this bad news? Because when Microsoft decided to buy Nokia’s mobile division, the deal did not include the acquisition of HERE as well. HERE is still part of Nokia, and it has recently made a surprising announcement that it is far from what Microsoft would have expected. During a recent interview, Sean Fernback, Senior VP at Nokia HERE, has said that his company plans to “wind down” the Windows Phone app development and shift some of the resources towards Android and iOS.

It appears that HERE’s dream was to be present on Android, which is why the company has decided earlier this year to speed up the development of the program for this particular mobile platform, which now has a market share of more than 85%. Moreover, the same level of attention will be given to the iOS version of HERE Maps, even if its market share is nowhere near Android’s. I think this decision, that HERE Maps needs to be present on the most important mobile ecosystems on the market, namely Android and iOS, makes sense from the developers’ point of view.

Windows Phone is not a major player in the smartphone business

It’s also a great turn of events from the consumers’ perspective, as Google Maps does not seem to have any competition on Android yet, so the arrival of HERE Maps will offer end-users more options when it comes to navigation services. Obviously, with only 3.5% market share, Windows Phone is not seen as a major player in the smartphone business yet, which is why HERE Maps is trying to relocate resources to reflect the real status on the market. Let’s be frank and admit that Windows Phone is only a minor player on the market for the moment and that it will probably take a lot of time and financial resources to bring it to a level where developers could actually be interested in bringing their apps and services to this platform first.

But that doesn’t mean that HERE should totally drop Windows Phone as a supported platform, and considering Fernback’s statement, it doesn’t even want to. However, I strongly believe that this statement was a warning for Microsoft to step up its offering for HERE Maps development for Windows Phone.

HERE Maps for Windows Phone will continue to receive updates often

For the time being, Microsoft and HERE are tied up in a license agreement for the use of the mapping platform for the next 4 years. But after this period, both companies will have to talk numbers once again, and the fact that Fernback has already announced that his company is shifting resources to Android and iOS is a clear statement from the Finnish company that there is life after Microsoft as well. But there’s more. Apparently, Microsoft and HERE are already in talks for a future deal. I’m not sure in what state these discussions are now, but Nokia does seem to have the upper hand here. Shortly after Fernback’s words hit the Internet, Pino from the HERE team felt the need to provide another statement in which he said that support and development for Windows Phone wouldn’t stop, but that his company was in talks with Microsoft on how to proceed further.

I think HERE is trying to put some pressure on Microsoft during these talks and I won’t be surprised if the Finnish company gets a much better deal this time.

HERE Maps logo
Image credits to Nokia HERE

Microsoft: Windows 9 Will Be Free for Windows 8 Users

Windows 9 preview is almost here, as Microsoft will unveil the first public build of the upcoming operating system in just a few days, but we have already heard quite a lot of details about this product thanks to people who are more or less familiar with the development plans.

The software giant has remained completely tight-lipped on the Windows 9 work until now, with the exception of Microsoft’s France President, who confirmed that the preview would be unveiled next week, but someone else from within the company now comes with a few more exciting tidbits of information. Windows 9 would be free for Windows 8 users, Microsoft Indonesia President Andreas Diantoro reportedly said during a recent event, which comes as a confirmation that the company is working to boost early uptake of the new OS as much as possible from the very beginning.

Still not confirmed by Microsoft

The news comes via local publication detik.com, which writes that Diantoro talked about Microsoft’s Windows 9 plan during a recent event at Hotel Mulia in Jakarta. The conference took place on Thursday, the source notes, and Diantoro confirmed that a Windows 9 preview build would be coming next week. What’s also interesting is that Microsoft is also preparing a built-in update system that would allow Windows 8 users to automatically update to Windows 9, without the need for a clean installation. Apps and settings, however, might be lost, but again, there’s no confirmation from Microsoft on this. Here’s what Diantoro said, thanks to an approximate translation with Google Translate:

“It’s easy, when Windows 9 will be released, users who are using Windows 8 just have to update via their device. Then Windows 9 will be installed automatically.”

Not the first time when Windows 9 is said to come for free

This isn’t the first time when some sources suggest that Windows 9 might be offered with a freeware license, but it’s definitely the first confirmation that we get from someone for within the company. Previous reports on the matter indicated that Windows 9 might become completely free for a wider array of users, including Windows 8 and Window 7 customers, but there were also some voices indicating that Microsoft could go as far as making this release free of charge even for XP adopters. While there’s no doubt that a free license is really great news for Windows 9, keep in mind that Microsoft hasn’t yet confirmed this, and it’s pretty odd to hear it first from its Indonesian branch, especially when dealing with such an important change.

As a result, don’t take it for granted, but there’s definitely hope that Windows 9 could be free, so next week’s event will clearly keep many people with an eye on Microsoft news.

Windows 9 is expected to be released in April 2015
Image credits to Windows Community

Apple Still Uses the 13-Year-Old Windows XP

If you’ve been living under a rock for the past seven days or so, you might not know that Apple’s recently released iPhones are affected by a weird problem that causes the phones to bend after normal use, which makes it really clear that this is a bug and not a feature as the microwave charging support.

Jokes aside, the bendgate is causing really serious trouble to Apple, so the fruity-named company has decided to provide users with an in-depth look at its very own testing labs to show that it’s indeed putting all iPhones to serious tests before they are released to the market. While we won’t talk more about the bending problem because our resident Apple expert Filip Truta has already covered the bendgate, there’s one really unexpected thing which can be spotted in the video published by CNBC. Computers in Apple’s testing facility are all running Windows XP, the same XP that was launched in 2001 and which was discontinued by Microsoft in April this year.

Why not a modern operating system?

As you can see in the video, Apple is indeed using dedicated software for keeping an eye on iPhone testing results, so compatibility with modern operating systems could be one of the reasons the fruity-named company actually decided to stick to an ancient platform. Interestingly, that’s one of the problems that Microsoft actually tried to tackle with the release of Windows 8, so its modern desktop OS should also be able to run the majority of apps designed for previous versions of Windows. The tricky question is why this software solution isn't designed to run on Mac OS X. Nobody can give an answer right now, but it’s good to see Apple using Microsoft products. Microsoft employees are also using Apple devices, you know, so it’s more of an “I’ll use yours if you use mine” kind of business.

23 percent of users also doing the same

Windows XP continues to hold a pretty big market share despite all Microsoft’s efforts to push for a more secure operating system, such as Windows 8 and Windows 7. Statistics provided by third-party market researchers across the world show that XP is powering 23 percent of the desktops across the world, even though support was dropped in April 2014 and the operating system won’t get any new updates and security patches. Many, however, are in the middle of the migration to a newer platform, so it could still take a while until all PCs are upgraded, which could obviously lead to a massive drop in market share for Windows XP. In Apple’s case, it would be really interesting to find out whether these PCs are connected to the Internet or not. If they are, expect the real iPhone 6 bending test results to surface any time soon, courtesy of curious hackers.

Windows XP spotted in Apple's testing facility
Image credits to CNBC

New Gigabyte H81M-WW Motherboard Is Actually More of a Sound Card with PC Hardware Support

Gigabyte has just released a new entry-level motherboard, except that, the with the way it goes on and on about its audio quality, you'd think that it's actually a sound card disguised as a mainboard for whatever reason.

Sure, the product page has a lot of information on every little detail, but it says a lot when a product whose main role is to act as support platform for a CPU has a description that starts off by praising its audio technology. Then again, it's not like motherboard makers have much else to go on when trying to reel in customers. Not when every other facet of a PC's prowess is determined by the CPU, GPU and storage/memory devices. As ironic as it sounds, audio technology is the only means that companies like Gigabyte can use to set their products apart from the rest of their cohort. So despite that the Gigabyte H81M-WW is a low-end motherboard, it has audio quality above mainstream-level, if you know how to go about it.

The Gigabyte H81M-WW audio technology

Everything revolves around a Realtek ALC887 HD audio CODEC, which technically has a 6-channel configuration but can be rigged to work on 8-channel mode if you plug two channels through the jack wired to the front-panel audio header. Essentially, instead of activating the headphone mode, the motherboard can just add the speakers you plug there as two extra satellites. The codec has under 90 dBA SNR, but Nichicon audio-grade electrolytic capacitors and ground-layer isolation from the rest of the board ensures it works better and more clearly than it otherwise would.

The technical specs of the mainboard

They aren't much to look at, really. There are two DDR3 memory slots wired to the LGA 1150 CPU socket, which can only support up to Haswell CPUs (Core ix-4000 series), not Haswell-E (5000X series). On that note, the 3-phase CPU VRM is wired to a single PCI Express 2.0 x16 slot. There are two SATA 6.0 Gbps ports as well, plus a pair of SATA 3.0 Gbps connectors, a PCI Express 2.0 x1 slot, and a legacy PCI slot. As for display connectors, there is only a D-Sub analog VGA port, with a max resolution of 1920 x 1200 pixels. It kind of puts a damper on the idea of using this thing for an HTPC. At least Gigabit Ethernet and USB 3.0 weren't left out. Two serial COM ports can be found on the rear panel as well.


It is unclear. The product has been posted on Gigabyte's website, but we'll have to wait for retailers to list it before we know anything more, like the price.

Gigabyte H81M-WW
Image credits to Gigabyte

Apple Staffer in Charge of iOS 8.0.1 Was Also Behind Botched Up Maps

Apple’s messy iOS 8.0.1 release was partially coordinated by a mid-level manager who also happened to oversee the glitchy Apple Maps in 2012. It isn’t clear if he is personally to blame for the new bugs, but it’s quite a coincidence.

Bloomberg has it on file from people familiar with Apple’s management structure that “Josh Williams, the mid-level manager overseeing quality assurance for Apple’s iOS mobile-software group, was also in charge of quality control for maps,” the report states.

Williams wasn’t laid off during the Maps fiasco

Although Apple fired not one, but two key staffers when the Maps fiasco emerged, the company decided to keep Williams on board and he was put in charge of testing iOS. The manager has a team of testers 100 strong spread across the globe with the key mission of “uncovering glitches that may eventually impact customers,” one person says. Apple prefers human input rather than automation-testing technology, former employees tell the publication.

Software versus hardware

Williams may not be to blame for the glitches inside iOS 8.0.1, though. According to a couple of people with knowledge of Apple’s modus operandi, “Another challenge is that the engineers who test the newest software versions often don’t get their hands on the latest iPhones until the same time that they arrive with customers, resulting in updates that may not get tested as much on the latest handsets,” the report says. After swearing to double down on secrecy, CEO Cook dramatically reduced the use of unreleased iPhones in the Apple ecosystem. As a result of that move, “only senior managers are allowed access to the products without special permission,” these people relay.

iOS 8.0.2 isn’t much better for some

As you may have already heard, Apple released iOS 8.0.2 a few hours ago to address the problems introduced by its predecessor (iOS 8.0.1). Among the listed bugs were the cellular reception flaw and the Touch ID problem. However, customers down under are still reporting reception problems on their iPhone 6 handsets even after applying the patch. The company is currently swimming in a sea of bad press that began with Celebgate, continued with Bendgate, and is now being hyped up by these botched software releases.

AAPL down

We wouldn’t be surprised to hear that Apple laid off Williams following these low points in Apple’s 2014 performance. Shares have tanked because investors are reportedly losing faith in the company’s smooth operations. AAPL shares closed at $97.88 (€76.81) yesterday, a 3.80% fall, which marks a two-month low for the Cupertino giant.

iOS 8.0.2 OTA Update
Image credits to Apple

iOS 8.0.2 Available for Download, Still Glitchy for Some

Apple has started sending out notices that iOS 8.0.2 is out and ready to be downloaded and installed. The primary target is the iPhone 6 user base, however the incremental update is also available for iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPhone 5s, and iPad customers.

The company has issued a brief and apologetic statement, saying, “iOS 8.0.2 is now available for users, it fixes an issue that affected iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus users who downloaded iOS 8.0.1, and includes improvements and bug fixes originally in iOS 8.0.1. We apologize for inconveniencing the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus users who were impacted by the bug in iOS 8.0.1.”

Fixes old and new

iOS 8.0.1 was deployed earlier this week to address some problems with HealthKit, keyboards, photo access, and more. With the release of that update, Apple actually caused more harm, as the new software crippled iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus handsets. About 40,000 users reported issues with the Touch ID fingerprint scanning utility, as well as some problems with cellular reception. The company quickly retracted the software (in less than two hours from its launch) and released a downgrade guide for customers in distress. It also promised to right this wrong with a fresh software update that would be delivered shortly. As such, iOS 8.0.2 is now available featuring not only the previously planned fixes, but also some new ones.

According to the documentation, the update “fixes an issue in iOS 8.0.1 that impacted cellular network connectivity and Touch ID on iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus,” allows HealthKit apps to be made available on the App Store, fixes 3rd-party keyboard selection when entering a passcode, and addresses a problem with some apps not being able to access photos from the Photo Library. iOS 8.0.2 further improves Reachability on the latest iPhone models, reduces unexpected cellular data usage, improves support of Ask To Buy for Family Sharing for In-App Purchases, and fixes a bunch of other issues involving ringtones, and photo and video uploads from Safari. Compatible devices include iPhone 4s or later, iPad 2 or later, iPad mini or later, and iPod touch 5th generation.

Ongoing problems for some

Unfortunately, iOS 8.0.2 seems to have required more work as customers in Australia are still reporting issues with the update. Redditor Onoj88 writes, “DO NOT INSTALL THIS UPDATE! I just updated to 8.0.2 and my touch ID is now completely broken! Phone will no longer unlock using my fingerprint. When I go to add a new finger i get a "Touch ID Failed" message. Running a 128GB iPhone 6 plus. Very disappointed....”

“Upon hard reset I am now getting ‘No service.’ Did they change this at all? When i check for updates it says I am running 8.0.2 but it seems to have all the issues of 1?” Others are echoing this user’s experience, but the problems seem to be far less widespread this time.

iOS 8.0.2 OTA update
Image credits to Apple

Sep 25, 2014

“iPad Plus” to Get Custom A8X Silicon from Taiwan with Love

In about a month from now Apple will feature a new showcase to announce (and possibly even release) its biggest iPad yet: a jumbo-sized 13-inch tablet which, by the looks of things, could well end up being called iPad Plus.

Confirming rumors that we were hard pressed to believe, Apple this month indeed rolled out not one, but two all-new iPhone models, the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus. Both smartphones rely on the same A8 processor that could well power even a laptop.

Apple has “big” plans

And when we say big, we mean really big. A 13-inch, uber-iPad that’s said to sport an even faster chip called the "A8X." The move wouldn’t be a surprise. Apple has used the “X” designation for tablet chips in the past, and if the planned screen size is any indication, it’s going to need it. A-series chips marked “X” are custom-designed versions of existing SoCs employed by iPhones. These processors are built to output twice or even three times more graphical power, mainly because of the bigger screen size of the iPads. A 13-inch tablet would undoubtedly require the most X-treated chip in the entire Apple lineup.

From Taiwan with love

The rumor comes from Taiwan, where it is said that Apple could be on track to unveil this enterprise-oriented iPad as soon as next month. The Cupertino behemoth hasn’t confirmed any plans to hold another showcase, but it’s happened before - two big events one month apart. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) will be in charge with producing the powerful new silicon which boasts a faster CPU & GPU combo, plus 2GB of RAM. While the extra memory makes sense, the increased graphical output is mandatory, considering the large number of extra pixels. Power efficiency is likely not a problem, as Apple has easily maintained a 10-hour autonomy on all its tablets since day one. A larger tablet would logically include a proportionally larger battery. So that’s one problem that the engineers can tick off their checklist.

Taking on Microsoft

It doesn’t take an expert to see what Apple is doing. With Microsoft eyeing the business sector with its Surface Pro 3, Apple wants to be well positioned to grab a slice of the pie. The versatile iOS already acts as a lever in this outlook, but the device also needs to prove more portable, cost-efficient, and dependable from a security standpoint. Considering Apple's promises for 2014 and the outcome of this year’s iPhone rumors, it’s quite likely that Tim Cook indeed has “one more thing” for us this year.

iPad mockups
Image credits to Martin Hajek

Google Nexus 6 (Motorola Shamu) Leaked Specs Confirm Huge 5.9-Inch QHD Display

Google’s next Nexus smartphone is expected to go on sale by the end of the year, but an exact release date is likely to be revealed next month.

Until then, however, info on the so-called Nexus 6 or Nexus X continues to surface online. Many of these leaks indicate that the next smartphone in the Nexus family will be manufactured by Motorola. Internally known as Motorola Shamu, the smartphone will be much bigger than what we have initially expected. Previous rumors claimed that the Nexus 6 might sport a 5.2-inch display, but new info that has just emerged via 9to5Google indicates that Motorola has something else in mind. Motorola Shamu or Nexus 6/X will boast a huge 5.92-inch display, which is said to support QHD resolution (2560 x 1440 pixels). According to the cited source, Shamu’s screen will offer 498ppi (pixel per inch), which is only slightly lower than LG G3’s QHD display that supports 534ppi.

But the display is not the only part of the upcoming Nexus smartphone that seems to have been enhanced since the previous information leaked online. Instead of the 2300 mAh battery that should have powered the 5.2-inch version of the Nexus 6, the new variant is said to pack a much larger 3200 mAh battery. The main camera has been boosted from 12 to 13 megapixels, and it will be able to record 4K UHD videos. On the front, the Nexus 6 will pack a 2-megapixel camera for selfies and video calls.

The flagship smartphone will be powered by Android L operating system

When it comes to hardware, unsurprisingly, Nexus 6 will be equipped with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 chipset that will accommodate a quad-core processor of unknown speed. However, we do know that the flagship smartphone will be armed with no less than 3GB of RAM, the same amount that’s been included in the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and Sony Xperia Z3. The mock-up that’s now circulating on the Internet may look like the scaled-up version of the Moto X, but 9to5Google claims that there are enough differences between the two devices, which makes them believe this is how the Nexus 6 may look like.

Keep in mind though that the design of the Nexus 6 has yet to be finalized, which means the final product may be slightly different from the mock-up leaked today, but not by much. Although the Nexus branding does not appear on the mock-up, the real smartphone will be launched with the logo of the lineup etched on the back cover.

Motorola Shamu
Image credits to 9to5Google

Sep 24, 2014

iOS 8.0.1 Released, Fixes Bugs, Brings New Problems for iPhone 6 and 6 Plus Users

One would say nothing can break Apple like the past few scandals and issues, right? The whole iCloud fiasco, the BendGate and now iOS 8.0.1.

The new version of firmware came out on Wednesday for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad and everyone jumped on the Software Update menu. Unlike the update to iOS 8.0, this time the over-the-air updating worked just fine. This is due to a smaller size of the Delta Update. If you update your device without iTunes expect an update that will only take about two minutes and a download smaller than 80MB.

What's new
The release notes explain the update has some bug fixes and improvements. Among others, Apple has fixed the bug that prevented HealthKit apps to work so all of them should now become available in App Store. They have also addressed an issue with 3rd party keyboards when users were typing passwords. 

Other small fixes are:
  • Fixes an issue that prevented some apps from accessing photos from the Photo Library
  • Improves the reliability of the Reachability feature on iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus
  • Fixes an issue that could cause unexpected cellular data usage when receiving SMS/MMS messages
  • Better support of Ask To Buy for Family Sharing for In-App Purchases
  • Fixes an issue where ringtones were sometimes not restored from iCloud backups
  • Fixes a bug that prevented uploading photos and videos from Safari

Broken iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus? Here's how to fix it

However, the update seems to break the cellular radio and Touch ID feature on some iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus devices. Apple has pulled the update an hour and 37 minutes later and released a short comment to Re/Code: “We are actively investigating these reports and will provide information as quickly as we can. In the meantime we have pulled back the iOS 8.0.1 update.” Two hours after the update, the only solution for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus users is to restore manually, via iTunes. If you are affected by these issues, back-up your iPhone on iCloud, connect it to the computer via the USB cable, click the Restore button and wait until the phone is restored. At the end the phone will get everything back via iCloud.

Apple is expected to re-release the iOS 8.0.1 update or jump straight to the iOS 8.0.2 just to make sure everyone has updated properly. As usual, a clean install of iOS fixes everything and if you still think your phone is slow just delete everything and start from scratch. make sure to back-up everything before the wipe out.

iOS 8.0.1 worked for some users
Image credits to Apple

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