You've probably heard that size matters, and Microsoft agrees. If you're carrying about a mobile device that measures 10.1 inches or less, the chances are you're not using a "professional" device -- at least this is what Microsoft believes.
10.1 inches, 256.54 millimetres, 25.654 centimetres; this is the new dividing line between what is classed as a personal device, and which is professional. This is interesting to know, but what does it actually mean? For starters, if you fall into the "personal" category, you're entitled to a free copy of Office.
Microsoft is now a services and devices company, meaning it is delivering its services and apps to all platforms -- not only its own. Heck, I bought the Microsoft Band over the weekend, and not only does it work with Windows Phone, but iOS and Android. In other words, the company is delivering on its services and devices mantra.
Having cross-platform apps is great, but you have to convince consumers to install them. With that said, it is much more preferable to have apps pre-installed on devices, which can make the consumer more likely to use them. Microsoft convinced Samsung to install some of its apps on the upcoming Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge; a major score for the company. Today, it announces that the partnership is expanding to even more of Samsung's Android devices.
Microsoft has announced that Windows 10 will officially launch this summer. Once it is given the green light, the new operating system will be made available as a free upgrade to Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1 users. And to really get the market share ball rolling immediately after the release, Microsoft welcomes even those who are running pirated copies to join the pack.
Given Microsoft's ambitions, Windows 10 is obviously being designed so that it will run on as many configurations as possible. The minimum hardware requirements, which were just revealed by the company, paint a clear picture regarding the hardware we can expect to see in upcoming Windows 10 devices (ranging from low-end to high-end offerings) as well as the level of compatibility with existing systems, the latter of which users eligible for upgrade will have to pay close attention to. So, let's take a close look at the Windows 10 system requirements.
In addition to the Redmi 2 smartphone, Chinese smartphone manufacturer Xiaomi also launched its Android tablet Mi Pad in India today. The highlight of the Mi Pad is its top-of-the-line specifications that includes an iPad mini Retina Display-alike screen, and Nvidia Tegra K1 processor (same as used in the Nexus 9) at the enticing Rs 12,999 ($200) price tag.
As for the specifications, the Mi Pad sports a 7.9-inch display with 2048×1536 screen resolution, flaunting 326PPI and Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection over it. Inside the device sits a 2.2GHz Nvidia Tegra K1 processor and 192-core Kepler GPU paired with 2GB of RAM, and 16GB internal storage with support for microSD that can add up to 128 gigs storage to the device.
Not to be outdone by Microsoft and Apple, Google has opened its first ever store. Located within Currys PC World on Tottenham Court Road in London, this is not a standalone store but a "shop in shop". Going under the predictable moniker of the Google shop, shoppers can expect to find a range of hardware from the search giant.
The stores will give people the opportunity to browse and try out numerous Android smartphones and tablets. Other hardware such as Chromecasts and Chromebooks will also be available. But the Google shop is about more than just hardware, it also gives people the chance to get hands-on with Google software, and attend events and classes -- forget Google Glass, this is Google Class.
The latest Lollipop incarnation may been have around for more than a month now, first arriving on Android One smartphones slated for Indonesia, but Google only yesterday made the official announcement, and revealed the much-awaited changelog. The good news doesn't end there, as the search giant also released a number of Android 5.1 factory images.
Android 5.1 Lollipop packs some pretty major changes. Among them are support for multiple SIMs, a feature that lots of Android vendors have offered for years now, and Device Protection, a feature designed to deter smartphone theft.
As expected, at its Spring Forward press event, Apple today revealed more details about Apple Watch (be warned, it goes all the way up to $10k), and announced a new, lighter MacBook. But Apple also introduced iOS 8.2, which is needed to make use of the new wearable. Here is what the latest version brings to the table, starting with the Apple Watch connectivity.
After installing iOS 8.2, iPhone users will be able to pair, sync and configure Apple Watch from their smartphone, using the new Apple Watch app that is on the homescreen. Also, there's a new Activity app which shows up after pairing an Apple Watch, showing achievements and fitness data on iPhones. It should be said that Apple Watch only works with iPhone 5 and later models.
Let’s face it, you’ve picked the mobile operating system you like. Whether you’ve opted for an iPhone, a Lumia handset or a device running Android, the chances are you’re not going to switch allegiances no matter what others may do or say to try to convince you otherwise. At the same time, few people would argue that their handset of choice is perfect.
You’ve picked your side when it comes to OS, but what about the handset itself? Apple, Samsung, HTC et al keep releasing slightly tweaked versions of last year’s handset, perhaps adding a faster processor, a larger screen and more memory. One thing is constantly overlooked, however -- battery life. And it’s time for things to change.
Android tablets are a dime a dozen nowadays, making selecting one a bit daunting. Unlike iPad where you only must decide between full-size and mini, tablets running Google's OS come in various shapes, sizes, colors, and prices.
In order to stand out among the sea of rectangular slabs, a company must do something bold and unique. Today, Archos announces the world's first Android tablet to have 256GB of onboard storage. Even cooler? The company announces its fusion storage technology, allowing internal memory to seamlessly combine with a microSD card.
Yep, we know all about the NSA, thanks Edward. Yeah, it's possible (probable?) that a government agent somewhere is listening to or recording your conversations. And yes, even if you're not one of the tin-foil hat brigade, there's a danger that someone could tap into your phone. But you don’t have to be paranoid to want security; there are plenty of companies and enterprise customers for whom security is of the utmost importance.
While much of the news coming out of MWC 2015 has been dominated by Microsoft's Lumia 640, the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge, and tablets from Sony, there's always room for something a little different. Following on from the security-focused Blackphone, Silent Circle used the Barcelona event to announce the follow-up -- the Blackphone 2.
Two flagship smartphones a year is one too many. Consumers who buy those top-of-the-line handsets do not like seeing their new purchase being outclassed in the same year it launches. Thankfully, Sony has learned its lesson, as there is no Xperia Z4 at MWC 2015. However, it's a bit strange that we're seeing Xperia Z4 Tablet. It's like the tablet division didn't get the memo, naming it after a device that's not here yet.
For those of you not keeping track of Sony's flagship tablets, Xperia Z4 Tablet is the successor to Xperia Z2 Tablet, announced at last year's MWC. The more-recent Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact that made its debut at IFA 2014 features a much smaller display, targeting iPad mini -- instead of full-blown iPad -- buyers. Let's take a look at Xperia Z4 Tablet.
Every mobile operating system would have you believe that it has the best built in keyboard. It's clear that plenty of people disagree judging by the number of alternative keyboard apps that exist in the Windows Phone, Apple and Android stores. Sometimes even the best software keyboard isn't good enough, but few people are enamored with the idea of carrying around a full size Bluetooth keyboard.
There are numerous mobile keyboards that are particularly suitable for use with smartphones and tablets, and today at MWC in Barcelona, Microsoft threw its hat into the ring with the Universal Foldable Keyboard. Bearing more than a passing resemblance to a large money wallet, this svelte device connects via Bluetooth to whatever mobile device you happen to be using -- including the newly announced Lumia 640 and Lumia 640 XL.
The announcements are coming thick and fast from MWC 2015 in Barcelona. As well as the Huawei Watch, Huawei also announced the MediaPad X2. As you might guess from the name, this is a tablet, but dual SIM support means that it is essentially a gigantic smartphone with no less than 7 inches of screen to play with.
And it's more than just the dimensions that are supersized -- the 2.0 GHz Kirin930 64 bit octa-core packs quite a punch. Being a brand new device, it's little surprise that Android 5.0 Lollipop is found pre-installed, and this is supplemented by the third version of Huawei's own Emotion UI. But there is much more to this phone/tablet crossover -- perhaps the first device to genuinely justify the horrific portmanteau phablet.
Lenovo is a manufacturer under a lot of scrutiny right now. While the Superfish debacle may be fresh on your mind, the company is much more than that onetime mistake. The company's hardware is legendary; well built and respected by both home users and the enterprise alike. The company has since apologized and vowed to stop loading bloatware on machines. In other words, while Superfish was bad, the fallout is benefiting consumers, as the new PC experience will be improved. Kudos to the company for learning from its mistakes and actually improving as a result.
Moving beyond mistakes, Lenovo is at Mobile World Congress 2015, where it is announcing new products. Today, the company announces three new tablets; one is running Windows 8.1, while the other two are running Android. Which OS do you prefer on a tablet?
Starting in April, IKEA will start to sell furniture with integrated Qi wireless charging points. The Scandinavian flat-pack furniture store, famous for the likes of the BILLY bookcase, plans to launch a range of home furnishing in North America and Europe, before extending the rollout worldwide.
You might expect that sofas would be a natural home for wireless charging -- just pop your smartphone on the arm so it can power up while you watch your favorite shows -- but in fact it is tables, desk and, surprisingly, lamps which will boast the feature. It's not just phones like the Galaxy Note 3 and Nexus 5 that can take advantage of wireless power, but also tablets like the Nexus 7.