Browsing articles tagged with " Android"

Smartwatch. Must have?

Sep 23, 2014
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The Smartwatch era has arrived. Attempts have been made by companies like Samsung, but anyone who has one of those probably can’t remember where it is now. The original releases were bad. But that doesn’t mean we should write them off because of a couple of false starts.

Google threw their weight behind wearables by releasing a version of Android called Android Wear. This new operating system has been adopted by pretty much all major Android manufacturers. Even companies like Sony (who produced the Smartwatch 1 and Smartwatch 2 running their own OS) have switched to Android Wear for their Smartwatch 3. Motorola recently produced quite possibly THE standout Smartwatch for Android – the Moto 360 (sold out within a few hours). It looks like a watch rather than a small computer on your wrist – and with a standard strap size, you can do whatever you like with it style-wise. It too runs Android Wear and gives the wearer a suite of Motorola-designed watch faces (actually nice ones!) to choose from.

Moto-360

In my opinion, the first thing a Smartwatch needs to be is a watch. It needs to tell the time. Once you get behind the watch face you start to see what Smartwatches offer – a ‘portal’ to your phone. Notifications that arrive to your phone can be shown on your watch. This means that txt messages and Twitter notifications can be sent to your watch, but maybe not emails or Facebook notifications. It’s your choice. If you are in a meeting and your phone rings, you can manage the call on the phone by sending a quick “I’m in a meeting…” txt to the caller.

I wear a Sony Smartwatch 2 connected to my LG G3 phone daily. Over the past 6 months, I’ve found I’m not looking at my phone every 10 minutes. Big change. My watch passes on my notifications with far less effort on my part and interruption to others. My Sony Smartwatch 2 isn’t perfect (I don’t particularly like the hardware), but it has shown me how I would embrace a Smartwatch going forward (my Moto 360 will be here soon).

Enter Apple. The Apple Watch will be a great addition to the Smartwatch market. It gives a huge boost to the category and brings some new thinking to the interface. I’m sure it will still wow in true Apple style and quality of the build, but I prefer round watches (hence my excited anticipation of my Moto 360).

140909142343-apple-watch-620xa

The Smartwatch isn’t a must have for everyone, but for people who have notifications coming in from txt, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and even email, it’s a way of handling the volume without spending the whole day with your face lit up by a phone display.

https://moto360.motorola.com/ Android only, purchased from eBay or local parallel importers
http://www.apple.com/watch/ Apple only, coming 2015
 

I <3 my Nexus 4

Jan 15, 2013
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Santa brought me a new Nexus 4 and as I said to my husband, it was like giving me a Porsche to drive down to the local dairy and back. A lot of flashiness when I really only asked for something with a good camera and the ability to send the odd text and make a few calls.

After turning it on and entering my gmail account details, I was up and running. Easy peesy and come early January I was repeating the mantra “I love my new phone” to everyone I came across during my summer holidays. Seriously, I LOVE my new phone – it’s not a mere phone at all. I am converted. It does what I want it to and more. It’s my ‘everything’. It’s my new best friend.

As a new Android user, I’m no expert but this is my take so far:

Embrace everything Google
Email, calendar, contacts are only the basics. Give Google Drive a go to keep all your important files either online or offline, you choose. I started by using it to save birth certificates and passport scans offline, just in case.
Google Now tells me what traffic to expect for my next appointment even telling when I should leave to get there on time. It also gives me the weather forecast for where I am and for my destination, my friend’s birthdays and more…my new BFF just ‘knows’ all this. How clever.

Play around
Make one of your first stops Google Play. Quick as a flash (and I mean this, by the time I was on the site and clicked Install it was on my phone – my new bestie is quick, lightning quick!) download some apps. From the advice of colleagues, Juice Defender and Lookout was on my hit list. The first to help save battery life where possible, and the second to check and protect for unwanted nasties like viruses, loss and theft.
Then came ensuring I had some handy widgets. Standout ones for me are the widgets for Facebook status widget and gmail inbox, so far anyway, I am an Android novice.

Pretty as a picture
I’m finding the camera fantastic – the 8MP quality is great and it’s quick to edit images, send to Facebook, Twitter, email (and a host of other options) with an easy click.  Set up Google Instant Upload to make sure your images and video are automatically uploaded to a private album on the web – never lose them and sharing and organizing them is a breeze.

Swiping, gliding, pinching….
Swipe from the right when presented with your lock screen to access your camera. Swipe from the left and you can access a widget or two of your choice. Without having to unlock the screen – how cool. Then, swipe down to reveal your notifications, swipe TWO fingers and get access to control brightness, WiFi and more. Swipe up to reveal Google Now. Oooooooh….nifty!
I’m also finding texting easier than my iPhone. The anticipation of my words, gesture typing – it’s actually making texting a pleasure.

Friends aren’t perfect
I’m disappointed that Google Music isn’t yet available here. It sounds great storing all your music online meaning no worries about synching or storage space. And you can save your faves for offline playing. In the meantime I’ve settled for transferring a few fave songs from iTunes to my phone using Android File Transfer. Also, since it’s so new I’m waiting on stylish case options to hit our shores, my new best friend needs a great jacket!

All in all, I’ve only had my Nexus 4 for a little under a month and I still have my L plates. My advice for new owners: hit Google Chrome and search for tips and tricks to get you started.

Introducing Kerio Connect

Feb 10, 2010
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Kerio Connect, previously known as Kerio MailServer has been released. When Kerio MailServer was first launched it focused on email and email security, the new name and branding aims to highlight the collaboration strengths of the messaging platform.

Kerio Connect has introduced new features including;

CardDAV support, this is a new protocol that allows Snow Leopard users to easily synchronise contacts from their Address Book without the need for a Sync Connector. You can also browse and edit company wide shared contacts.

Performance improvements, Kerio Connect uses a more efficient file access method to improve accessing and listing mailbox folders.

New mobile device support, allows over-the-air synchronisation of HTC Hero, Motorola DROID, Google Nexus One and Palm Pre mobile devices. It is possible to synchronise email messages, tasks, contacts and calendar events.

Distributed Domains, this is a feature that allows multiple installations of Kerio Connect to work together to share collaboration resources. This is ideal for companies with multiple offices locations.

Other features include; IMAP server improvement for multi-session connections, retention policy for messages, HTML webmail editor for Safari 4, and complete web administration.

Digital Arena will be managing the Kerio Connect update to our existing Kerio MailServer clients in the very near future.

Google Android phones

Jan 17, 2010
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We have secured a Google Android based HTC phone to test and compare against the iPhone in the smartphone area. The Android software is an open system that any hardware manufacturer can use on their phones. Compared to the iPhone, the Android system is powerful but a bit harder to use. If you have a technical mind and love “geeky”, then the Android is a great choice.
Features like native Facebook integration (yes, it gets photos and birthdays etc for your contacts), twitter, powerful cameras with zoom, white balance, ISO, video recording and metering modes. Like the iPhone, there is a Google Marketplace which allows you to download apps for various tasks. The screen works the same way – swipe, pinch, tap etc. There are models with and without physical keyboards – the onscreen keyboard works well – but the iPhone keyboard is better. Syncing is best done through your GMail account for contacts and calendars, or you have to buy Missing Sync for Android on the Mac – free sync software for the PC. The flood of Android powered phones is yet to hit NZ – but when they do, make sure you take one for a test drive first to see that it fits your brain type before buying one!! The Google Nexus is the next generation HTC hardware and will be in NZ sometime later this year.

PIC: HTC Hero