Vodafone signal expert Dr Rob tells Android magazine all the hottest signal secrets.
Signal is a mysterious beast. Sometimes you have it, sometimes you don’t. Sometimes you can be texting on top of a mountain and sometimes you have to recreate the opening scene of the Lion King just to get a single bar. So how do you explain all those little quirks and frustrations? You ask Vodafone’s signal expert Dr Rob to explain all. Here are ten of the most fascinating things we learned.
We chat with Samson Chen, the maker of this unique ‘internet remote’ for smartphones
Picture the scene: You’re trying to enjoy a Sunday morning lie-in, but then your phone alarm goes off. It’s on the other side of the room and out of reach, forcing you to get out bed. Wouldn’t it be great to have a remote control for your phone? Enter the Qmote. This multifunctional remote can turn off your alarm, find your phone when it’s missing, turn music on and off, and control all sorts of smart tech around the house.
The Qmote is currently on Kickstarter – with less than 2 weeks remaining. The size and shape of a guitar plectrum, the Qmote only has the one button, but you can program it to complete any number of functions depending on how many times you click it. These can easily be set up using the free companion app. It also works with IFTTT so you can harness the online automation service to control the smart tech in your house, like dimming your Philips Hue lightbulbs or turning down your Nest thermostat.
Small enough to fit it in your pocket or fit on a keyring, the Qmote offers all the conveyance and control of a smartwatch, but without the need to have it manacled to your wrist. Unlike an Andorid Wear watch, it doesn’t require daily charging either. Instead it runs on a coin cell battery that will last a full year and only uses Bluetooth Low Energy 4.0 to connect with your phone
We go behind the goggles and ask what Samsung’s VR headset means for Android apps and games
Rather than staring blankly out of the window on your commute home, why not immerse yourself in the fight against an alien invasion? If you’re having a stressful day at work, transport yourself to a calming oasis on your lunch break. Nothing on TV this evening? Enjoy a 3D performance of the Cirque du Soleil in your living room. What sounds like science fiction is now science fact thanks to the Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition headset.
“The Samsung Gear VR goes far beyond expectations of how mobile technology can be used to consume content, and is a powerful representation of the progressive innovation of the Gear series,” said JK Shin, President and CEO of IT & Mobile Communications Division at Samsung Electronics, when revealing the futuristic gadget at the launch event for the Galaxy Note 4 at IFA, back in September.
A complete departure from Samsung’s other accessories in the Gear range, which have all taken the form of smartwatches, the Gear VR was produced in partnership with Oculus, the virtual reality experts that hit the headlines when they were bought up by Facebook last year. Making the most of the phablet’s Quad HD Super AMOLED screen, the Note 4 fits into the front of the headset that contain Oculus-designed goggles, which when worn trick your eyes into viewing what’s on the phone screen as a three-dimensional image. As well as wide viewing angles, accelerator, gyrometer, magnet and proximity sensors, the headset will respond to your movements to adjust the view so you feel truly immersed in a virtual world, as well as allowing you to move around and interact with it.
Sony focussed a lot of their efforts on some incredible wearable tech at this year’s CES.
The Sony SmartWatch 3 was one of the highlights of the show for the technology giant. The classy-looking stainless steel timepiece has a waterproof 1.6-inch 320×320 TFT LCD Transflective display, which is designed to be visible even in bright daylight.
The system runs off an Android operating system and is compatible with your Android phone, capable of linking and transmitting data from phone to wrist and back again.
One of the big bits of commercial news for Sony was the collaboration with Virgin Atlantic. Not a lot is known at this point, but Sony says that the partnership will enhance the travelling experience.
How does the Chromecast compare to other Android streaming devices? Let’s get investigating…
Chromecast has helped kickstart a new wave of streaming devices that are available to Android users all over the world. There are now lots of new streaming sticks on the market, offering users different ways of getting the content that they want, when they want and we’ve taken it upon ourselves to discover which one is right for you. Our criteria for this group test was simple; we wanted to explore the various streaming options that each one of these devices offers and just how easy they’re to set up. It was also important to identify what areas each excel in and where each of them falters as well. Both the Chromecast and Roku are considered two of the best on the
market and both are featured here, but we’ve also taken a look at two of the more obscure choices currently available. The Elgato EyeTV and the Neo G4 offer a different variation on streaming, with the former being a highly regarded TV hotspot and the latter offering users a complete Android interface for your TV. But can any of the alternatives realistically take on Chromecast’s run-away streaming success? Read on to find out which one comes out on top. You might be surprised.Google Chromecast
Google have unveiled their first Android One device, offering stock Android at budget prices for Indian users
Google have unveiled their first Android One device, offering stock Android at budget prices for Indian users. If it’s successful, the Android One line will be rolled out in Indonesia, the Phillipines, Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh before the end of 2014. We ask the experts if Google can really dominate the growing market in Asia and beyond and what challenges they will face.
While everyone expected an Android L announcement at this year’s Google I/O,o ne of the most crucial initiatives for Google’s mobile future was easily missed, as it wasn’t directly aimed at the US and European markets. Android One, a new hardware and software spec for low-end smartphones in developing nations, is intended to help Google expand the reach of its mobile OS in countries like India, China and beyond.
What exactly is it, then? Google is using the term “Android One” to refer to a set of hardware standards for smartphone manufacturers, standards which it hopes will speed up the process of developing budget handsets in emerging markets. Google is also providing the stock Android package – the same one used on the Nexus and Google Play Edition devices – then working with OEMs and carriers to give new customers the handsets and data packages they need. Essentially, Google gives manufacturers everything they need except the raw materials to build the product.