Archives for posts with tag: iphone

This product was sent to us for review from MeriMobiles.com.

When you first open the box you’ll notice the phone looks identical to the HTC HD7 in nearly every way. One big difference: it runs Android. Of all the things I liked about the phone, the most substantial one was probably the screen. It has a very high-resolution 4.3″ display with good contrast and colors. I’m guessing it is a AMOLED display due to its performance, and washed out colors when watching outside. A characteristic of AMOLED displays is that they are terrible for viewing outside, and that is certainly true on this phone. It includes both a front and back facing camera, as well as a shutter button, but neither cameras perform good in low light conditions, and are just good enough for Facebook pictures in good lighting. The back camera also has a dual LED flash, although it isn’t very powerful compared to many phones.

On the back of the phone, you will notice a nice, but flimsy, piece of matte plastic. It’s nearly soft touch, but just doesn’t feel rubbery enough to posses the title. This may or may not be a bad thing for you. The back unfortunately feels fairly flimsy, but during drop tests it did not break. You’ll also notice a metal kick stand around the 2 MP camera and dual LED flash, just like the HD7. I did occasionally have to tighten the screws that hold it in, but other than that, it performed excellently while watching video or reading. The display is covered with a hard plastic rather than glass, meaning it attracts even more fingerprints, although it won’t affect performance. You’ll also notice 3 backlit capacitive buttons, unlike the normal 4, but I never missed the search key. Battery life was OK, but like all Android phones, will only get you through a day.

When you power it up, which unfortunately can take a little while, you’ll notice you have a full vanilla build of Froyo. Due to its capacitive screen, this phone runs most tasks surprisingly well. It won’t be the real thing, but for a $200 unlocked phone, this can pack a punch. It did sometimes spontaneously lag or even crash all together, but it was defiantly usable. Typing was great due to the large screen, although I installed the Gingerbread keyboard to improve accuracy and eye candy. It would sporadically type the incorrect letter, but it was no just as good as iOS. I did notice substantial speed increases when using a 3rd party launcher such as Launcher Pro or ADW.Launcher.

Still, this regrettably isn’t true in gaming. It can hardly load Angry Birds, and once it does, you’ll notice 7 frames per second performance. Not exactly a gaming phone. The MediaTek MT6516 416MHz processor isn’t exactly designed for gaming. It does have a second 260MHz core for all phone operations, so in regular tasks it will run fine, but don’t expect it to outpace a HTC EVO 3D, or even the EVO Shift 4G for that matter.

I think this is the perfect secondary phone for travelers or a first time smartphone buyer, perhaps for kids on a prepaid plan, as it’s unlocked and will run on any GSM carrier. Another example could be for travelers, it works internationally unlocked and has dual sim card slots. Overall it is a fairly good priced phone, but unless you absolutely need that 4.3″ high resolution screen, you might instead buy the Star A5000, which has 3.5″ multi-touch screen, has a touchpad, looks like a G2 without a keyboard, and is only $160. Remember, the iPhone 4 (and pretty much all smartphones) cost $630+ unlocked, so $200 is nothing. I think Chinese phones have a market, and they are just getting better and better. For many people, this will be all they need for a phone.

Included:
-2 batteries
-A bad headset
-Micro USB cable
-Manuals
-The A1000 itself

Pros:
-Stock Android 2.2
-Wi-Fi 802.11b/g
-4.3″ high-resolution multi-touch Screen
-Good viewing angles
-GPS and A-GPS
-Dual Sim/Dual Standby
-Decent call quality
-Good build quality
-Excellent customer support from MeriMobiles
-Includes 2 batteries

Cons:
-No 3G data, only EDGE (2.75G) and GPRS (2.5G)
-The screen is very hard to view outside
-Not too good battery life
-It can sometimes lag, and it has very poor gaming performance

Buy:
Star A1000
Star A5000

Rating:
3/5

This application was provided to us for review by TumuIt, creators of Hype.

Your workflow can get cluttered on a small screen, but is overall very usable.

$30 (limited time pricing) from the Mac App Store. Requires Mac OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.6.

Ever since the iPhone launched 4 years ago, it has seemed everyone wants to go into the unknown realm of HTML5. Forgetting the slow, buggy Adobe Flash animations that always scream “COMIC SANS!” Until now there hasn’t really been a way for people who didn’t go to a 4 year course in college about coding to actually use HTML5 in their work. Until now, no one has developed a tool as robust as Adobe’s Flash from its popular Creative Suite. A few former Apple engineers saw this moment, a rare time when no one was making a tool for a fresh, but fairly developed technology that allows much desired animations, videos, and interactive sites to work on the most popular phone in the world. They created Hype. Hype not only brings HTML5 to a usable state, but makes it familiar with a timeline view, much like non-linear editing software. You can simply “record” animations, key frame them, add videos, and make a beautiful site. With this you can create amazing ads, websites, games, and more. Due to the video editor-esque layout, this application is truly unlimited on what you can do.

It may take a little while to get used to, but in the end this is an app that will be easy enough for consumers to use, and powerful enough for professionals to use. Once you get beyond the attraction from the beautiful sites this can make, you’ll notice you cannot zoom in or out in the project. I found this to be very annoying on my 13″ MacBook, as it was cumbersome to resize or place something when I can’t see all of. The inspector was a very important tool, but its large size often got in the way of inputting text or moving objects. My final big gripe about it is its font selection. They provide a few basic fonts, and that’s it. You can’t use any of the other fonts installed on your machines, just the ones included. I understand many machines wouldn’t have the exact font I’d like to use, but they could have used a web-based universal font system. This is a 1.0 release, so I can’t expect it to be perfect, but some of the cons seem like a no brainer.

Other than those, the program is fairly intuitive, fast, and can create some excellent sites. One smaller complaint is the inability to natively support background images. This means you’ll have to fumble around with resizing the image and putting it in the back. Buttons on the other hand do support this feature. It’s a small problem and will likely be fixed in the next update, but as of version 1.0.3, you cannot do a default background. Unlike other site creators, “pages” are managed using “scenes,” just like a Movie. You can have anything link to a scene, but no reloading is required, and you can add a glamorous transition. If you are running your site on a slow server, than initial loading times can be slow, and transitions can be choppy at first. There is a quick preview button to take a look at your website in its current state. When exporting, you do have the option to use either a folder on your computer or an integrated Dropbox option. I would say this is a consumer targeted product, but it is defiantly powerful enough for most users. I do hope to see a “Hype Pro” in the future with a little more expandability. Although, If you want to create an intuitive HTML5 site with smooth transitions that require no reloading, this is really the only out-of-the-download tool for you. I have created many sites so far with this tool, and my next tech reviewing site will certainly be made using it. Overall I suggest this app, and with some small updates, I would give this the editor’s choice award.

Pros:
-Easy to use, lets everyone get into HTML5
-Efficient
-Fast, reliable
-Works on all modern browsers
-Powerful
-Good video editor-like UI
-Integration with Dropbox
-Instant previews of your current version

Cons:
-No zooming in and out
-Hard to use on a small monitor
-Poor font selection

4/5 stars

Buy here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/hype/id436931759?mt=12&ls=1

Video review:

By Tyler Simpson

Recently Apple news sites have been filled of rumors, so I thought we might put them all together and analyze the evidence.

1. New MacBook Pro with Intel Core Sandybridge – happened
(True) The new MacBook pros came out with Core i5 and i7 Sandybridges, thunderbolt I/O, and an HD camera which has been rebranded to be called “FaceTime HD” from “iSight”, even though it was already HD capable. The casing is the exact same as last years model. The 13″ does suffer with a GMA, but the 15″ and 17″ have improved AMD/ATI graphics. Both the 15″ and 17″ have quad core i7 processors, and the 13″ has a dual core i5 or i7. Prices have not changed.

The MacBook pro is due for an update and the Sandybridge line of intel i3, i5, and i7 processors have recently been released (and recalled, and fixed). Apples patented liquid metal technology may also replace the unibody construction, making it even thinner and lighter. Apple.com moved it’s estimated shipping from 1 day to 3-5 days, and the rumored event will take place on thursday. Recently we got a leak from Bestbuy showing new “Apple Laptop” model numbers. All together it seems as though we can be nearly certain on a update arriving soon that will provide the Sandybridge with faster speeds (except for the graphics card which will suffer with a GMA) and maybe even cheaper prices.

2. iPad 2
(Confirmed) The iPad 2 looks exactly like the mockups, and it comes in a white version. The device has a dual core A5 chip double the speed, and a 9x faster GPU. Photobooth comes with it and it has 2 cameras. The price is the same.
The first iPad was announced at the end of January, yet wasn’t released until Spring. Often Apple will take a while to get the FCC approval and all of that after the first generation of the product is announced and before it is released, yet for later versions nearly instantly release it. I would bet the iPad 2 will be announced in early March and then will be released in mid-March. It would still be a little less then a year after the first generation was released, but it seems to be about the right timing. We first saw leaks of the iPad 2 at CES from case companies that had legit looking iPad display models. These matched up with earlier cases and leaked Photoshop mock-ups. We also found a FaceTime, camera, and the popular among kids app, “Photo booth”. All of this means there is a soon to be announced iPad 2 with at least 1 camera and a slightly new design.

BREAKING NEWS: Apple has sent out invites to the iPad 2 conference and it shows a peeled away calendar with an iPad behind it. The date is March 2nd.

3. Apple flatscreen TV
It’s fairly self explanatory, a Apple TV with a built in tv

4. Bye bye MacBook – nothing changed, the MacBook is still available after the new Pro models came out.
(Somewhat False) When the MacBook Pro’s were updated the MacBook remained the same, yet lost 3 hours of battery life (Apple now uses more accurate tests that have wifi on and use of YouTube and other average tasks). I am hoping to see an update coming with the iPad announcement.

Many say the MacBook will be discontinued when the new MBP comes out. I will miss the great device, but Apple now has it’s MacBook Air starting at the same $1000, and we haven’t seen anything about possible new standard MacBooks. The 13″ Pro is already nearly the same machine, just with a different casing, just as it has been from day one with the black MacBook to the Al. MacBook then later the MacBook Pro 13″. While I hope we see a refresh of the white MacBook, it most likely won’t come.

That’s my roundup of all the new Apple rumors.

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