GETINCASED | Custom phone cases.

Madi_Pattern_iPhone_4s_case-273x400

I’m now very excited to announce that custom phone cases are available from GETINCASED! Yay! There are lots of different designs available for a range of phones – iPhones, Samsungs and Blackberrys!

I was very excited as my phone case was delivered super quickly, and i’m very pleased with it. The quality of the cases are lovely – they seem fairly flexible but also feel very durable and strong. The cases themselves fit my phone perfectly and were very easy to fit, and the image quality is very high, which means the design is beautifully clear, even all the tiny details! I’d definitely recommend them.

10% Discount Code for our readers: geekshavelanded

a-Jays Two Review

a-jays Two

The a-Jays Two are a basic, no-frills in-ear set of headphones with a pleasing neutral sound quality that suits most music genres.

The three new headphones share the same design as well as flat cables, but they feature different finishes and markings. The drivers on the cheapest a-Jays One has the dullest appearance, whereas Two has a glossy black look and the Three is rubber-coated. Two and Three have the model name imprinted on the cable near the buds–a good thing if you want people to notice the headphones you’re wearing.

Wires that trail from the bottom of the ear cups are designed in the traditional Y configuration. All three feature black cables but no slider to take up the cable slack. While the flat cables are flexible and reasonably long at 115cm, the flat design may not be everyone’s cup of tea.

The flat design is good at reducing tangles, but tends to introduce microphonics as the cables are easily bent only on one axis. The 3.5mm plug is a straight affair and has a good amount of protection to prevent the cables from kinking. However, the cable protection on the earbuds is not as good as the one on the plug, as it may damage the cable because it kinks sharply at the cable exit.

The accessory bundle is different for the three models, too. Only five pairs of ear tips are included with One, while Two has an additional stereo splitter and an airplane adapter. The top-range Three adds a handy hard carrying case to the list.

All in, the a-Jays range puts up a good fight in an already saturated market. Just be aware that the cable protection isn’t as good as a few other offerings on the market, but the unique flat cables and choice of three different models for different tastes make the a-Jays an attractive consideration.

Feeling Foxy – AppLift lands $13 million investment

When you’re looking to download an app, most of you will turn to the app charts on The App Store, Google Play or the Windows Store to find what you want. But it may surprise you to learn that there’s a big lucrative war being fought amongst developers to get enough downloads to establish themselves in the chart; a war that some companies are making real money out of.

That includes German based start up AppLift who announced this week a tidy $13 million investment from Prime Ventures. Founded in 2012 by Tim Koschella and Kaya Taner of the Hit Fox Group, AppLift have carved out a niche as mobile marketing and monetisation gurus; helping more than 80 game publishers and 500 media companies reach the top of the charts and make money on the way.

Now I know some of you will be scratching your heads: how can they make so much money from getting apps to the top of the chart? Well, it all spans from the fact app based gaming is at the forefront of the money making revolution. Rovio, developers of Angry Birds, cleared $195 million in profit last year while another Finnish company Supercell announced recently that they’ve been making $2.4 million every day; a staggering sum of money I’m sure you’ll agree.

But they’ve only been able to do this is by getting hold of enough users to top the chart and reaching the right users who’ll buy the in app extras to make the developers their money.  With most people discovering their apps via the charts and an app needing 80,000 downloads in the U.S. alone reach the top ten of the free charts, advertising an app to as big and as relevant an audience as possible is really important for financial success.

This is where companies like AppLift come in. Essentially, they run a big advertising network found on mobile apps and the mobile internet for gaming apps to tap into. By adding a custom built bit of code into an app, the developer can support themselves in a number of ways.

They can either run ads in their app which promotes relevant services to users to earn money. Or they can advertise their app within other apps and, by paying a small cost of roughly a dollar  for every install, they can take advantage of a risk free payment system that guarantees players before payment. This model is quite widespread across the industry and there are a number of companies who run networks like this, such as established industry players Tapjoy and Flurry.

What AppLift have managed to master, and what makes them such a great an investment prospect, is their track record of attracting the right kind of users to their clients apps by prioritising games. By focusing on targeting the right titles to the right fans, instead of random content generally seen in most affiliate advertising, the platform has had great success in matching high numbers of paying users to developers.

That list of clients includes King, makers addictive match three hit Candy Crush Saga. Shane Hornejj, Director of Performance marketing at the company, echoed that assessment of AppLift. “It’s great to see that AppLift has secured $13m in this round of funding. They have been a great partner in driving large volumes of installs across Android and iOS while maintaining high quality users.“

So, with the funds being used to hire 50 engineering staff and opening offices in Seoul and San Francisco, AppLift look like they could be well placed to use their investment to keep boosting developers up the app charts.

 

Competition: Win A 12 Months Subscription To LOVEFiLM

Man-of-Steel

Geeks Have Landed have teamed up with LOVEFiLM for an awesome competition for you lucky readers.

To celebrate the release of the upcoming superman film ‘Man Of Steel’ this June, LOVEFiLM wanted to find a superhero of their own so left it down to us to find out which of our readers could hold the mighty powers to battle evil on their behalf! They need someone with some awesome super power. Maybe they have laser eyes that can cut through steel, maybe they can lift buildings and throw them at their enemies or maybe they just have the ability to cook an entire roast dinner in under 20 minutes. Either way it has been bestowed upon us the task to find the ultimate hero! It could be you!

As a prize they are giving us a 12 months subscription to LOVEFiLM to give to the chosen one so you have 24/7, 365 days of access to literally thousands of the hottest films, TV Series’ and games online or sent direct to your home! Sounds pretty sweet right?

To win this fantastic prize all you need to do is answer the question ‘If you were a superhero, what would your super power be?’

Let us know and we will pick who we think has the best super power to be the the ultimate winner and LOVEFiLM’s hero!

Comment below with your answer, then share on Twitter and Facebook. Good luck! Check out more info on LOVEFiLM at – http://www.lovefilm.com/


WWDC 2013: What to expect

 

WWDC 2013

I won’t claim to be an expert when it comes to the tech world, but after several years of reading blogs and tech sites, watching product launches and keynotes, and generally maintaining an interest in all things digital, I can see patterns emerging. Rather than being able to tell you what Apple will do, I think it is much easier to start with a list of what they almost certainly won’t do at the WorldWide Developer Conference on June 10th.

  • No “cheaper” iPhone. (You can already buy a cheaper iPhone, they still sell a product launched almost a full three years ago, the iPhone 4)
  • No third-party app defaults (at best, you might eventually be able to choose an email client, or browser, for example, in the share menu of a productivity app, but more than that is probably wishful thinking)
  • No iPhone with vanilla Android Jelly Bean (it’s just not going to happen, so stop asking!)
  • No widgets (MAYBE a bar in notification centre for settings…maybe)
  • No fingerprint scanner (I really don’t see this coming any time soon, not enough of a reason for expensive, space wasting tech)

I’m certain that they will announce new tech at next week’s keynote, and perhaps even some new services (iRadio, anybody?…although I think iTunes Radio is a more likely name). The event will likely focus on Mac hardware and perhaps show some demos of the next iteration of Mac OS X (although we are running out of room in the 10.x naming, perhaps at some point that will need to be rebranded). There will definitely be a beta version of iOS 7 released, which is sure to be widely panned but extremely easy to use and understand.

The fact that Apple is considered boring is a testament to how hard they work to hide all the interesting tech and software that goes into their products. I believe there will always be “low hanging fruit” not dealt with in many Apple products, simply because there is no market for a perfect product, and the perfect product (Chromebook Pixel, Retina MacBook Pro, *Insert PC name here*) will never truly be attained when everybody’s view of perfection is different.

Apple has a history of justifying it’s premium “Apple tax” because it marries great hardware with software that just works, and services that aren’t perfect, but are good enough for everyday users, with some very bright shining spots. Odds are, this year’s WWDC will not render the other tech giants’ products obsolete, but it will provide more than enough to hold off many consumers until they are ready to release the next big thing, whatever that is.

Win: A Movie Wall Mural Art Worth Up To £500

45203-2

Calling all movie art lovers!

We’ve teamed up with Photowall.co.uk to give one lucky reader the chance to win their choice of wall mural up to the value of £500 from their collection. So whether you’re a fan of Bruce Lee, Marilyn Monroe or John Malkovich, chances are, there’ll be something there to make your walls look an awful lot cooler.

If it was my choice, I’d be going for this beauty…

2

Photowall has an amazing mural collection of retro looking film and movie star themed motifs, such as James Bond (Sean Connery), Audrey Hepburn, Robert De Niro, and James Dean among many others.

To enter the competition, first Follow us on Twitter and then tweet us the name of your favourite movie star followed by #photowall – We’ve made it easy with the buttons below:



Why the iPhone 5 Lightning to 30-pin adapter costs so much

3

If the thought of buying an iPhone 5 and then having to shell out a further £25 for the Lightning to 30-pin Adapter – just to use your own speaker dock – has left a bitter taste, prepare for some sweet news.

1

Geeks Have Landed have just had a chat with Apple about the steep price of that Lightning connector and it’s been revealed to us why. As you may have noticed the Lightning port is purely digital, but the old 30-pin connection in your car or on your speaker dock uses an analogue signal. Apple’s Lightning to 30-pin Adapter has its own DAC (Digital-to-Analogue Converter) allowing the iPhone 5’s digital signal to be understood by your analogue dock – which isn’t a cheap or simple piece of kit.

2

With the cheapest DAC on What Hi-Fi starting at £150 and topping out around the £500 mark, the £25 price and compact body suddenly don’t seem so bad. Of course if you just want to charge your iPhone 5, or attach via USB, there’s a Lightning to Micro USB Adapter for just £15, but that may not help much with your Apple speaker dock.

7

Getting Real About the War on Drugs via Gaming

At GametheNews.net we turn news into games. In reflecting the world around us a singer might write a song, a filmmaker produces a documentary and a journalist writes an article, as games developers we express our interest via games. Just because our form of expression is through games doesn’t mean that we take the subject any less seriously. We’ve just released our latest newsgame called NarcoGuerra which looks at the War on Drugs. It’s an apt time to highlight the issue. Recently the Organization of American States launched a groundbreaking report exploring alternatives to the war on drugs.

If you are new to newsgames, they are a type of game that explores news and current affairs. The game looks at the ongoing conflict from the perspective of the Mexican authorities trying to stamp out the drug trade within that embattled country. In the game the player must attempt to retake Mexico’s regions from cartels while also dealing with corruption within the police force itself.

If you are new to the War on Drugs here’s a summary. In our research for the game we approached Transform Drug Policy Foundation and discovered that it’s not a war we can win because its not really a war at all. That was one of the things we wanted to explore with NarcoGuerra. What games can be good at is simulating systems such as the ebb and flow of the War on Drugs. What interested me as a games designer was the dynamic of the situation which meant that success created failure; if the police are effective in stopping the supply of drugs then the street price goes up because demand is a constant. But as the price goes up so more gangs enter the market because there is more money to be made.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9W8LiYAR3hA?rel=0]

All we have done is place that dynamic into a game-simulation environment and allow the player to interact with it. We’ve challenged them to see if they can end this seemingly unending war.
Loads of games frame their interaction with a war/military type mode of play – we wanted to, well, play with that expectation. So we’ve created what will be a familiar framing for fellow gamers; a strategy game. To allow the gameplay a bit of leeway we also included a mode that does not have this dynamic linked up, where it is possible to win the War on Drugs. We felt it would be interesting to include a bit of the make-believe that some politicians and many others have been pushing for decades; that this is a war and that it can be won. After all, as the designer of a number of games set in fictional universes, I’m well versed in building black-and-white worlds of goodies, baddies and happily ever after. What is a newer experience for me, is to explore real world dynamics and I’d like to invite those same politicians who still think we’re in that make-believe world to join the rest of us in reality and start to explore solutions that acknowledge it never was a war and so can’t be won as such.

You can find out more about the game here. You can also find out more about the sources we used to create the game here.

Finally, a social network for your pets

Leo-on-YummyPets-2

With all the puppy pics and cat memes blasted over the Internet, it was a no brainer that the pet-only social network YummyPets would thrive. With over 150,000 users in France, it’s finally hit the UK so we can all be digital friends with our furry little helpers.

That’s right – you can create a profile for your pet and meet tons of other pet owners online. On a mission to take over the world with a wide community of animal lovers, YummyPets is already monetising with its own consumer magazine and pet services. There’s a clear market for pet owners and YummyPets founders Matthieu Glayrouse and Mathieu Chollon have already pooled in £1.3m in their 20-staff operation.

It’s a great upgrade from awkward pet-friendly apps like Catbook. Although I think we really need some better names here.

Sony SmartWatch Review

Sony_SmartWatch_Review7_300

Sony_SmartWatch_Review2_300

Sony_SmartWatch_Review

Sony_SmartWatch_Review3_300

The Sony SmartWatch is a wrist-ready Android device with a 1.3in OLED screen. So the SmartWatch really is like having a tiny smartphone strapped to your arm. We can’t help but notice how similar it looks to the iPod nano, launched two years earlier. The screen resolution is rather low at only 128 x 128 pixels, about half that of the iPod nano’s 240 x 240 pixel display.

Whether it’s an intentional copy or not, the SmartWatch looks undeniably cool with its rounded corners, silver metal edge and glossy black fascia.

However, the SmartWatch is quite bulky at 12.8mm thick, making it tricky to fit underneath some clothing. It’s lightweight at just 40g with the wristband.

You don’t have to wear the SmartWatch on your wrist, though. It’s got a clip on the rear so you can attach it to whatever you want. It simply clips to the supplied wristband which comes in different colours but its rubber material means it can get quite clammy. Sony does supply an adapter which means you can instead use your own strap.

The Sony SmartWatch is a cool and attractive gadget, one that you want just for the sake of it. However, it’s more than just a shiny touchscreen watch offering plenty of apps and functionality. The downsides are a slightly bulky design and the need to charge it up regularly.

1 9 10 11 12 13 68