Apple Announces the New iPhone SE

Up until now, if you wanted to own a smaller iPhone, your only viable choice was the iPhone 5S, and even though there’s nothing wrong with this particular model, it’s definitely not up to par with more recent Apple offerings, at least as far as performance is concerned. Fortunately, Apple has just announced its brand new iPhone SE, which looks pretty much the same as the 5S, but it does come with improved hardware. To be more specific, this gadget is powered by the A9 and M9 chips installed in the iPhone 6S, and that’s a lot of power for a small 4-inch smartphone.

According to its creators, the iPhone SE is twice as fast as its predecessor CPU-wise and three times as fast GPU-wise. Interestingly enough, the battery life seems to have improved as well, which is definitely commendable. Other highlights include a “Retina” front-facing flash, LTE and 802.11 AC Wi-Fi support, a 12-megapixel camera and support for Apple Pay. As far as appearance goes, not much has changed when compared to the 5S, but we did notice the phone’s matte edges, which is a nice touch.

As far as pricing is concerned, the cheapest 16GB iPhone SE will cost $399 while the 64GB version will require a $499 investment.

Apple’s iPad Air 3 Might Be Unveiled in March

It’s true that Apple’s iPaid Air is long overdue for an update, as the latest model for this particular gadget was unveiled back in October 2014. Fortunately, sources indicate that the Cupertino-based company is looking to put the iPad Air into the spotlight once more in March during a special event. Looking at the numbers, it looks like iPad sales have declined quite a bit from 2014 to 2015 as figures dropped to 16.1 million. It makes sense for Apple to turn its attention to the iPad Air in order to fix this, as this particular model appeals to a wider audience when compared to the iPad Pro, which is more business-orientated.

During the aforementioned event, the company is also expected to unveil a 4-inch iPhone as well as a new Apple Watch. As far as the watch goes, it will celebrate its first anniversary this year, and Apple will probably use this opportunity to present new timepieces as well as several visual updates to existing models. However, revealing a new iPhone in March seems a bit out of place, as these devices usually come to light during special events held in September. In any case, we’re talking about the iPhone 5se, which will be powered by the same new A9 processor that currently animates the iPhone 6 and 6s.

Could This Be What the New iPhone Will Look Like?

It’s true that Apple’s different iPhone versions have a lot in common when it comes to aesthetics, but we have to admit that the company has introduced some relatively impressive features over the last few years. Now, with the new iPhone 7 on the horizon, many Apple fans are wondering what will this new phone bring to the table, and more importantly perhaps, what will it look like? Even though official details are scarce right now, we’ve recently stumbled upon a video that shows off a possible version of the new iPhone, and it definitely looks intriguing to say the least.

First of all, the smartphone comes with a borderless OLED display and with an integrated home button. The home button allows the user to scroll through available apps and open them from the lock screen while an integrated touch ID system opens up the menu completely. Moreover, the home button merges into the screen when it is not in use, and it is actually able to recognize gestures. As far as software is concerned, the new iOS 10 will include a generous selection of useful features, including home screen customization options and the ability to set the phone to standby mode by double tapping the screen.

Would you consider buying this iPhone?

This Special Battery Could Keep an iPhone Charged for up to a Week

The Apple iPhone 6 is a decent smartphone from a performance point of view, but it’s not exactly the most ideal when it comes to battery life. Fortunately, a British company named Intelligent Energy has recently made a huge breakthrough in creating an iPhone that can last for an entire week on a single charge. This is all possible thanks to a built-in hydrogen fuel cell, which provides much-needed energy while giving off small amounts of heat and water. The company has created a working iPhone 6 prototype that includes a rechargeable battery as well as a patented technology that produces electricity by mixing hydrogen and oxygen.

The prototype has the same shape and size as an original iPhone 6, but it does boast a series of rear vents that allow water vapors to escape. Even though some believe that Intelligent Energy is working closely with Apple, the firm’s chief executive, Henri Winand, has refused to comment on these rumours and stated the following:

“To our knowledge this has never been done before. We have now managed to make a fuel cell so thin we can fit it to the existing chassis without alterations and retaining the rechargeable battery. This is a major step because if you are moving to a new technology you have to give people a path they are comfortable with.”

The battery itself could be fueled using a disposable cartridge that would fit in a slot into the bottom of the smartphone. Apparently, a consumer version of this improved iPhone is just a few years away, but it all comes down to how fast Apple wants to go forward with the project. Apple’s representatives also declined to comment on a potential partnership with Intelligent Energy.

Thank you TheTelegraph for providing us with this information.

iPhone Gun Case?

Hands up! This is an armed robbery, well not armed, more like an iphonee heist; I would like to see the spell checker correct that. Anyway, a new product which has briefly been shot onto the market had aimed to have a unique selling point by turning your iPhone into a mock gun.

As the illustrative image below demonstrates, the product works by allowing the consumer to slide his or hers iPhone into a plastic handgun frame. This product had been marketed by online retailer Japan Trendshop for a nominal price of $49 (£31.50) this, however, was before the item disappeared from the website with the status being “product not found”

This item is silly, potentially dangerous and could have serious repercussions for the owner. Just imagine strolling into your local bank with what looks to be a gun handle sticking out of the side of your pocket and sounds as if it’s ringing, you will either be laughed at of shot, or both.

Confirmation of the silliness of this invention came from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office who stated in a Facebook post that “A police officer’s job is hard enough, without having to make a split second decision in the dark of night when someone decides without thinking to pull this out while stopped for a motor vehicle violation,” This point is very valid, if a police officer only has a fraction of a second to determine if this gun is real or not, the consequences could be fatal for the recipient.

I do feel however it’s a sorry state of affairs when a phone case could potentially cause problems within society. It’s a silly invention, but it’s a product which in a different time might have been viewed more light-heartedly instead of having obvious connotations which could be fatal in today’s gun toting world.

Images courtesy of CNN Money and artist Freeport D Art page

Thank You CNET for providing us with this information

T-Mobile Blue Screen iPhone Bug

Oh the nostalgia of the blue screen of death which has been a constant annoyance for PC owners. Yes PC fanboy, I am aware that Macs have a variant of this bug which boots to a blank blue screen, I use the term PC for personal computer, otherwise it would be a PiM for Personal iMac, and nobody wants Pims o’clock. ABut as mobile devices have become more powerful, the threat of a blue screen might be lurking in your shiny new phone and it may depend on your network.

There have been rumours abound that subscribers of the T-Mobile phone network have become victims of a blue screen of death and also frequent restarts which seem to occur on their iPhone. So far the known devices of such a bug are the iPhone 6 Plus, the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 5s. Users of these affected models seem to suffer with restarts every 10 to 30-minute intervals. This bug also extends to multiple versions of iOS 8 including iOS 8.1 and iOS 8.3.

As yet T-Mobile has failed to clarify the problem, but there seems to be a feeling of the glitch being either a carrier update from T – Mobile or memory problems with the devices in question. Users who have experienced this glitch have managed to halt the ascendance of the blue screen of death by performing a “hard reset” on their iPhones, it’s a good job we are talking about tech, otherwise I would be known as the ex writer of eTeknix.

If this fails, T-Mobile are instructing customers to delete their old text messages and do a factory restore via iTunes. It suggests to me that T-Mobile might be at fault for this glitch, if it was a problem with the devices then people from all networks would be effected. The advancements in tech but the same old glitches, it’s a funny old world.

Thanks You MacRumors for providing us with this information.

Image Courtesy of newnewsouth

Smartphone Theft in London Still Frustrating Police, But Slow Progress Being Made

Metropolitan areas in the United States and United Kingdom have struggled to crack down on theft related to smartphones, leading to an increase in theft, robbery, and potential violent incidents. Most of the problems occur from street-level crime, with 300 reported smartphone thefts each day in 2013.

Not surprisingly, the Apple iPhone 5 proved to be the most stolen smartphone in the UK, with the iPhone 5C, 5S and 4S following behind, according to “The Mobile Phone Theft Ratio” report from Home Secretary Theresa May. The report was released before the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus were announced, so a future report will likely indicate a change.

Here is what the Report of Technological Advisory Council (TAC) Subcommittee on Mobile Device Theft Prevention:

“Smartphones are a significant driver of thefts in London. Smartphone thefts from a person more than doubled between 2010 and 2013, increasing from 16,141 stolen smartphones in 2010 to 32,872 in 2013. In 2013, nearly half (49 percent) of London robberies involved a smartphone. Despite a successful 2012 crackdown on smartphone theft, London police still received over 100,000 reports of stolen smartphones in 2013.”

Despite the increase in smartphone thefts, London police authorities believe theft prevention have decreased 24 percent in the six months after Apple made its Activation Lock available. Authorities also have increased undercover patrols aimed at suturing hotspots where increased numbers of thefts have occurred.

Smartphone owners are urged to password/PIN-pin protect their devices, and run some type of anti-theft software – able to remotely wipe and brick a lost or stolen device – and report any stolen mobile devices to proper police authorities. Regardless of new technologies being developed, smartphone theft isn’t going to disappear overnight – and will take continued work between consumers, smartphone manufacturers, and wireless carriers.

(Image courtesy of the Huffington Post)

Apple & Foxconn Double Down On Display Manufacturing Deal

Foxconn is one of Apple’s main go-to companies when it comes to all things manufacturing for its iPad and iPhones, with a new request from Apple: a $2.6 billion investment, which will see Foxconn opening up a new manufacturing plant that will handle displays, for Apple only.

Innolux, Foxconn’s display arm according to BGR, is something that Apple wants access to. The company wants Foxconn to make displays for its iPhone, iPad and other devices, exclusively. A public relations rep for Foxconn’s display unit, Innolux Corp., said “Equipment installation will commence next month with mass production of panels to start by the end of 2015 after an urgent request for exclusive capacity.”

I wonder how long it’ll be until Apple simply acquires Foxconn?

Source: BGR.

Ex-Riot Games Developers Bring Vainglory MOBA to iOS

If you thought the only time you’d be playing MOBAs was when you were at you desktop, and that moving around in the car, train, plane, couch or toilet were safe from your addictions to MOBAs… think again.

Super Evil Megacorp, a bunch of ex-developers from Riot Games, Blizzard and Rockstar have formed their superpowers together for this new studio, with their first game being a MOBA named Vainglory. Vainglory will be hitting iOS devices later this month, and uses the typical MOBA formula by shrinking the team size down to three – versus the usual five – and limiting the matches to just 20 minutes.

There’s only one lane to concentrate on, and the game’s controls are done through your iOS-powered touchscreen. For those living in Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand, Vainglory is free. Europeans will have to wait until November 13 to get their hands on this new MOBA, with North America, South America, the Middle East and Africa receiving it on November 18.

China, Japan and Korea currently have no release date – which is strange, as those markets would be huge for this game. You’ll require an iPad 2 or higher if you want to get in on the Vainglory action, or an iPhone 5S, iPhone 6, or iPhone 6 Plus to play it.

Source: Joystiq.

Apple Interested in Automatic iPhone Unlocking Technology

Apple is reportedly working on a new technology that gives iPhone smartphone owners the chance to automatically unlock their devices when they are at home or in the office – and the feature will also make sure the device automatically locks when out of “safe” range.

The system can identify iPhone location and smartphone owners are able to designate specific locations where the phone can be unlocked.  If implemented, the need for a passcode or fingerprint to unlock the phone is no longer required, giving users a rather interesting manner for security.

Here is what the patent notes:

“Because some locations may be inherently more secure, such as a user’s home or office, these locations may be considered ‘safe’ and require less stringent security.  Conversely, some locations may be considered higher risk or ‘unsecure.’  In these locations, it can be desirable to implement stronger security protections.”

Location can be based on mobile phone signal, GPS, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi or determining location to other smartphones in the same area.

The increase in theft and loss of smartphones has led to new security technologies aimed at helping keep devices secure – and this is just a natural evolution of that practice.

Thank you to The Guardian for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of iMore

First Bus Rolling Out Mobile Payments, Digital Ticket System

Bus company First Bus plans to launch an app for Apple iPhone and Google Android smartphone users, giving them the chance to buy tickets using their smartphones. The app is scheduled for release on Monday.

Once the app has been downloaded, riders have to enter payment information and create a secure PIN number – and will be able to purchase tickets on their smartphones before boarding the bus, and then showing the bus driver a digital ticket.

First Bus is reportedly one of the first bus carriers to offer this type of service in the UK. However, as casual users become increasingly comfortable downloading and using apps, it could become common in the future.

Digital tickets isn’t a make or break deal for First Bus, which has become more creative in their marketing efforts. The company’s effort to cut fares in Bristol has paid off with a boost in passenger growth from the risky gamble.  First Bus will see how its recent marketing campaigns work and will modify behavior as needed.

Thank you to The News for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of East Norfolk Bus

Google Android, Microsoft Windows Phone to Receive Smartphone Kill Switches

Following a drop in theft due to the Apple iPhone iOS 7 kill switch, Google Android and Microsoft Windows Phone mobile operating systems will also receive similar treatment.

It’s good to see Microsoft including a kill switch, but this is critical to deter theft for Android – the Samsung Galaxy S series of smartphones are popular among consumers, and equally popular among criminals. It’s unknown when Microsoft and Google will roll out these kill switches, but they will become available soon.

In major metropolitan areas, especially in the United States, theft and robberies related to smartphones is a common occurrence. Thieves are able to steal popular smartphone models and flip them on the black market quickly, hopefully before the owner is able to brick the device.

Here is what the New York Attorney General said:

“An activated kill switch converts an easy-to-sell, high-value multimedia device into a jumble of plastic and glass, drastically reducing its street value.”

In Europe, one in three Europeans experienced theft or loss of a smartphone during 2013, according to reports. Police authorities, phone manufacturers, and wireless carriers hope kill switches will deter thieves away from smartphones, which can be remotely bricked before they are re-sold.

Thank you Bloomberg for providing us with this information

Harvard University Professor Creates Technology That Sent First Transatlantic Smell

Researchers from Harvard University used an Apple iPhone app to successfully send a scent from Paris to New York using the oPhone communication platform.

Users take a photo of an object, assign it at least one “aroma note,” and then send the custom photo on its way.  The message recipient will be greeted with a link to the picture and the included aromatic note, which will emit scents if connected to the oPhone Duo device.

The oPhone Duo has several “neurons,” with each neuron including four air holes – three of the air holes have dry, aromatic material – and the machine is able to receive signals that will correspond with the appropriate air current.  Four neurons costs about £12 and can create a large number of different smells.

Interestingly, users do not need to purchase oPhone hardware, available with a £87 starting price, and is currently available.

Here is what David Edwards, Harvard University professor and co-inventor said during a live demonstration:

”Say I’m a barista and I have these great coffees, and I have difficulty describing them.  You come to the café, you’ve got the iPad, ask, ‘What kind of coffee is that? And you can play it, get the primary and secondary and the mixed notes.  It’s an education; it helps you talk to the barista.  From the retail point of view, it’s a real way of reaching out and saying, ‘Get some coffee.’”

Thank you Yahoo News for providing us with this information