Apple announces iPhone 6 launch date

Apple announces iPhone 6 launch date amongst other product launches.

apple logo

It’s the most hotly anticipated technology of release of the year and now Apple have confirmed what we’ve all been waiting for: the launch party date for the iPhone 6.

“9.9.2014. Wish we could say more,” says a teasing a press release for the official launch party, which will take place at in Cupertino, California. The exclusive event at the Flint Centre for the Performing Arts will have a nostalgic theme to it, as it’s the same place in which Apple founder Steve Jobs first launched the Apple Mac some 30 years ago.

The event is expected to be the launching platform for a number of Apple products, including both a 5.5 inch and a 4.7 inch version of the iPhone 6 handset.

iwatch

 

Amongst its already varied roster of products is the highly-speculated ‘iWatch’, a hand-held device which is rumoured to monitor the health of its wearers, amongst other futuristic features. (Geeks Have Landed first wrote about the apple iwatch back in May 2013)

Apple wishes it could reveal more, but the rumour mill is already churning out a whole host of highly advanced upgrades for the new device. After releasing the iPhone 5S and 5C last summer, Apple has this time round promised a complete re-invention of the iPhone we know, rather than a few upgrades.

The newest handset will be a gamer’s paradise as it’s alleged it will feature a flexible, scratch-proof sapphire screen with a Retina display+ which will boast a 1,704×904 screen resolution. With mobile games like www.riverbellecasino.com/ca/online-blackjack taking over smartphone users’ time at an exponential rate, the newest release from Apple will only serve to prolong the shelf life of the mobile gaming industry.

Amongst other rumours surrounding the new phone are those of the highly anticipated iOS 8, which will have a huge focus on the aforementioned health monitoring. As part of the iWatch’s features, heart rate and fitness monitors will allegedly come as standard, and users will be able to track their progress with their smartphones.

All these new features are not likely to come cheap, and the market retail price is rumoured to start at around £550 / $650 / AU$869. This is hardly likely to deter technology freaks however, and with an official release date set to be one week after the launch party, Apple could soon find itself selling out of its latest products in a matter of hours.

Apple has quite a lot to live up to if the rumours turn out to be true, but with the success of its previous models considered, it shouldn’t have any problem making it to the top once again.

The Developing Mobile Workforce and the Future of BYOD

Mobile-Productive-Employee-Red.jpg

When surveyed, 72 percent of employees said that they want to be able to use their personal devices for work. In fact, whether employers are prepared or not, the BYOD revolution is already taking place—more and more workers are turning to tablets and other mobile devices to access company data and network resources.

This shift from an office-bound workforce to a mobile one has the potential to be very rewarding for both employees and businesses, but only if the proper steps are taken. Here’s a look at how people are working now and what employers can do to keep themselves safe:

  • BYOD is here to stay. Employees want the freedom to be able to get work done on any device they choose. 58 percent of mobile workers believe that they will rely on their tablets more this year than last year. In response to this demand, 56 percent of companies say that they have changed their BYOD guidelines to be more accommodating to personal devices in the past year, but there is still more to do. Businesses need to develop a comprehensive BYOD policy and make all their employees aware of what they can and cannot do with company resources on their personal devices.
  • Employees are working from everywhere. Three out of five workers agree that they don’t need to be at the office to be productive. Employees are now pulling out their tablets and getting work done everywhere—from the morning commute to the couch at home. With that in mind, businesses need to find a way to securely make information available to employees when they need it.
  • Workers are becoming more productive. Mobile devices have the potential to allow employees to work smarter and to get things done at the speed of the global marketplace. Businesses need to take proactive steps in allowing their employees to take advantage of these benefits.

How do you use mobile devices in your business? Share your thoughts on BYOD in the comments.

Alan McMahon works for Dell and is involved in marketing consumer and enterprise solutions across a range of products from tablet PCs and servers to storage and virtualization. Alan McMahon is based in Ireland and enjoys sailing as a pass time.

What the OUYA is going on!

ouya

What is OUYA?

Ouya is a compact Android powered games console. You can use it to download a range of games.

It like taking your smart phone and making it into a miniature games console.

Now Ouya will let you try these games for free before you buy them which I think is a great and novel idea, we are all getting used to free apps and once you get to like them you then buy the extra levels well this is a play on this system and should work well.

Ouya downloads its games directly storing them on its own built in 8GB storage which is expandable by USB stick, which I like as my children are always losing discs or scratching them so they are no longer working (very expensive to replace).

You do get a controller with the console but you can also use a mobile phone to control the characters on the screen and play the game. (great for that friend that pops in and wants a go)

As Ouya states it plays all your apps on your TV, it can even stream shows, movies and music directly through your TV sound system. They have already paired with Twitch.tv, Crunchyroll, iheartradio, TuneIn, XBMC, Plex and Flixster and are continually adding more to the list.

It also comes with free developer tools to create and build your own OUYA games, so if you ever had that great game but just didn’t know how to create it here is your chance.

Specs on the OUYA

1GB RAM

8Gb Internal Storage –expandable by USB

1080p Via HDMI

USB 2.0

Conclusion

For the price of £99 you get a great gaming system which is actually so much more than that and this is for a consul you can not only play games on but also develop for. I’m definitely in. (although I will have to get passed my kids first !!)

Closure of Google Reader Make the switch before 1 July 2013

freedly

With the closure of Google Reader don’t forget its vital to swap over to a new reader today. (Sunday 30 June 2013)

I would suggest Feedly which is a free service together with Mr Reader £2.49 from the Apple App store together they are the perfect team.

mr-reader

I recommended this wonderful article to help you make sure you move all your feeds across to Feedly from Google Reader before this closure on 1 July 2013.

This free step by step guide was written by Ed Dale and I think it explains everything perfectly.

Step by step guide to transfer your Google Reader to Feedly.

This will be downloaded as a pdf which is so much better to store and read.

I have already moved across so make sure you do today (Sunday 30 June 2013) before it’s too late.

 

 

Google Glasses Raise Concerns

google glasses

Google Glasses Raise Concerns

The concept is quite simple you were a pair of spectacles and this feeds the wearer information such as news, maps and also details about your surrounding you can even ask question when you looking at a building like when was Buckingham Palace Built.

Concerns

There are concerns being raised though about the glasses ability to capture video and take photos with the wink your eye (just hope you don’t have a nervous twitch).  These are concerns are based on the privacy of the public and that is why Google has made the glasses very visible to other people while in use.

Google have tried to remove issues by stating the glasses won’t allow the following features:

  • Clearly visible to members of the public.
  • Won’t feature Face Recognition Software.
  • Banned Porn Apps that would allow users to view adult videos and pictures.
  • Won’t allow you to watch video filmed while wearing the glasses.
  • Encouraged developers to openly try to hack the glasses.

The glasses then will be useful to check your twitter or Facebook accounts, help with directions and identifying your surroundings, taking pictures and videos.

My thoughts.

Although the idea is interesting and certainly will have a lot of interest my thoughts are that you can do all this on a smartphone so you are not getting anything new that you don’t already carry around with you.

I wear glasses and I suppose if this technology was built into them then it wouldn’t be much different to me as I am used to glasses, but say you don’t wear glasses then to have this on your face might be a bit strange and also do you want to walk around viewing the world like Data from Star Trek.  Not me, sometimes I just like to go for a walk forget about technology and enjoy the surrounding without interruption (very calming)

Let me know your thoughts :

  • Do you love the idea and would love a pair
  • Do you hate the thought of wearing them and would rather stick to your smart phone.

FaceTime Voice: The Biggest thing you didn’t hear about in iOS 7

Hello again,

If you’re anything like me, you spent 2 hours of your life plastered to a screen listening intently to a keynote speech, trying to make sure to catch every detail. Luckily, since I have a day job and can’t actually pay $1600 + airfare to GO to WWDC, Apple live-streamed the thing so that wasn’t necessary. I could talk about how the new version of iOS is a huge departure, and how it’s great, and how it’s awful, and you could probably justify all of those points. However, instead I would like to tell you about the biggest feature that Apple really didn’t spend any time on.

FaceTime (and iMessage) was really the first time a non-SMS based messaging system that integrates with regular text messages was released. BBM and Google Talk may have come first, but neither replaced SMS without users having to do work. Once iMessage was announced, it was just a matter of time until free iOS to iOS voice calls were introduced as well. Now that Apple has such a huge level of pull with carriers, they are free to experiment and introduce whatever they want. With iMessage, people were sending text messages that didn’t cost $0.15 a pop without even realizing it, every time they sent a message to another iOS user. With FaceTime Voice, it will be possible (in the fall, possibly in a later update) to have phone calls you make to other iOS users be handled entirely through VOIP. People will be able to make phone calls without using their minutes, and without even necessarily realizing they are doing it.

This is going to kill carriers, who are suddenly going to be inundated with customers who are noticing that they use a lot fewer minutes, and unlimited SMS is fairly cheap, but regular phone minutes are quite a bit more expensive. These people will want to downgrade their plans, and perhaps add more data to compensate for the added usage (although VOIP is very light on data).

I look forward to the consumer release of iOS 7, which will undoubtedly focus more on the average person’s needs, and will likely highlight this as a reason to buy iPhone.

ps. For the record, I did install the iOS 7 beta, and no, I am not a registered developer. I did this for free, and legally, and have been doing it since the second beta of iOS 5. If you want to know how, ask me @RobAttrell. If you just want to know my thoughts, feel free to leave a comment and we can discuss it, but I’m liking what they offered so far (most of which was successfully predicted here).

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.

Apple iWatch: features, specs and more

iwatch_concept

We take a look at all the latest rumours circulating about Apple’s upcoming iWatch

Wearable tech is big business and looks to be one of the biggest trends of the coming year. Google has its glasses and Apple and Samsung have their respective watch projects. But how would an iOS-powered watch work? What would it do? And how much is it likely to cost?

Concrete information is decidedly thin on the ground at present but we do know the company has put together a highly skilled team including engineering director James Foster and program manager Adam Pantfoerder to work on the project – and we’re hearing that the whole thing is being overseen by none other than Sir Jony Ive – so it’s fairly safe to say that this is no half-hearted venture on Apple’s part.

So what can we expect in the way of USPs from Apple’s effort?

Specification

To say that little is known about the device’s rumoured spec would be a gross understatement. Apple has this project sewn-up tighter than a sardine’s swimming costume. What we do know is limited to scraps of gossip emanating from supply chain sources, as is always the case with unconfirmed up-and-coming devices.

The iWatch is believed to feature a curved – perhaps even flexible – 1.5-inch screen, fronted by an as-yet undetermined Corning product. Could it be the oft talked about Corning’s flexible Willow Glass? Perhaps. Multiple sources, including CNET, are reporting that Corning’s bendy-flexy display could appear on devices as soon as this year.

The device is also suspected to make heavy use of Bluetooth for syncing and communicating with larger devices like the iPad and iPhone. NFC is also a possibility in this regard also, bringing both connectivity and payment technology into the fray.

Features

Current rumours suggest Apple is looking to give the device a full operating system, rather than a shrunk-down ‘lite’ offering. That means features like Siri, Apple Maps, iMessage and iCloud could make an appearance. Siri also seems like a no brainer at this stage.

We’d also expect hydrophobic and shock-proofing capabilities as standard aboard the iWatch. How many times have you jumped in the shower with your watch on?

Release Date

The rumour mill is divided over this one. Many so-called sources predict that the iWatch could be set for a Q1 2014 launch. Bloomberg disagrees, claiming the product will be with users around the end of 2013, just in time for Christmas.

Price

There’s next to no information currently available about the device’s projected price-point. Knowing Apple, the device will retail with a premium price tag – anywhere from £200 to £800. And because it’s a watch, there’s plenty of scope for variations on design and build materials over time, meaning we could eventually see multiple types of iWatch aimed at varying price-points.

When Apple eventually do ship an “iWatch,” can anyone guess what Samsung’s next product will be?

apple-iwatch-samsung-swatch

The Xbox One – more than just a games console?

xbox1

After an endless stream of rumours and hype, Microsoft has finally revealed the successor to its highly-popular video games console the Xbox 360 – the Xbox One.
Revealed to a packed audience at a specially-constructed Microsoft base in Redmond, Washington, gamers were given their first peek of one of the big players in the next major battle of the console war.

In case you missed it, you can see the full reveal, complete with intriguing partnerships and brand-new games packed with crisp graphics, through this link. However, those who did catch the unveiling are likely to be musing at how Microsoft is taking gaming away from solely a gamepad.
Here is a glimpse at how the Xbox One could soon be the main vocal point of your living room and beyond:
xbox2

Outside of the launch of the three main video game consoles of the last generation – the Xbox 360, Sony’s PlayStation 3 and the Nintendo Wii – arguably the most intriguing technology in the industry was Xbox Kinect.
Whereas motion-sensor concepts by Sony and Nintendo required you to always have a remote in your hand in order to interact with a virtual world, Microsoft gave you the option to actually become the controller.

However, the intrigue soon gave way for some disappointment when Kinect was released worldwide in 2010. Initially, the gadget was laggy and unreliable, while requiring you to have a considerable amount of space in your home to actually use it. Even when things picked up for the device, there was little support in the form of AAA games to once again peak interest.
With the new Kinect though, which will be bundled with the Xbox One at launch later this year, it appears that improvements are being made to the device across the board.
For starters, the enhanced Kinect sensor is now able to pick up the movements of 25 joints in the human body, right down to a subtle lean in the spine or a slight shrug of the shoulders – great for navigating the Xbox One’s homepage or playing a game controller-free then.
Furthermore, the gadget’s camera is able to create an image of a gamer that is detailed to the point where a shirt’s wrinkles and buttons can be passed over into a virtual reality seamlessly.

As Phil Harrison, a corporate vice president at Microsoft, mused to Eurogamer in an exclusive interview: “So with Xbox One, what we did with the Xbox One Kinect sensor is totally redesign it, so it’s wider field of view, it has new technology to detect motion in the room, it has a more sophisticated sound and voice recognition system, which dramatically improves the fidelity, precision and accuracy of Kinect compared to Kinect for 360.”

Xbox SmartGlass to learn a few new tricks

Microsoft certainly changed the landscape of video games last year, when it launched Xbox SmartGlass. An application that can link an Xbox 360 up with a device powered by Android, iOS or Windows, the strategy has worked to enable entertainment to become much more interactive.

At the Xbox One unveiling though, Microsoft showcased the next-generation of Xbox SmartGlass.
Just say you have a Samsung Galaxy S4 with the app downloaded then. By using your smartphone’s stylus pen, which can be purchased at affordable prices as part of Mobile Madhouse’s excellent Samsung Galaxy S4 accessories range, you will have the power to switch channels on live TV without ever needing to lift up a remote or controller.

Mind you, Xbox SmartGlass has always been hailed as offering users with “second screen content”, and this is not going to change any time soon. If you are watching NBA on your Xbox One, to take the example shown at the reveal event, you will now have the opportunity to see your fantasy sports league being updated on your smartphone every time the score changes.

Microsoft Studios’ corporate vice president, Phil Spencer, summed up to IGN: “Xbox One was designed from the beginning understanding that multiple devices in the family room exist. Some of those devices may leave the family room and still want to remain connected to the experience.

“People might have multiple devices and have multiple players in the room who actually want to interact with the experience on-screen with their own private screen or they might want to play and have their own data. It was definitely a design criteria from the beginning for us because we’ve seen the usage of SmartGlass as very strong on the 360.”

Much more will be revealed regarding the Xbox One at Microsoft’s E3 2013 press conference on June 10th.

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