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The Lumia 920: A Luminescence

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Currently, Nokia’s flagship smart phone is the Lumia 920, a fourth generation phone which runs the Windows 8 operating system and is the best-selling smart phone that runs the OS. It was released last November 2012 and since then, the Finnish mobile phone company has produced several variants; the Lumia 925 which is a thinner version with an aluminum body and a better camera and the Lumia 928, which can be acquired exclusively from Verizon in the United States. The phone has sold over 4.4 million in the last quarter of 2012 exceeding expectations. It has been a hit in Finland, Germany, UAE, China and Great Britain. The phone has received mostly positive views from critics and has garnered accolades from top technological media institutions.

Just how good is this smart phone? Well, let’s list down the specs and analyze it.

nokia lumia 920

CPU : 1.5 GHz dual-core Qualcomm Krait
GPU : Qualcomm Adreno 225
Memory : 1GB RAM
Storage : 32GB

 

The processor is no joke. It’s not quad-core but it’s pretty fast when using programs, surfing the net and playing games. Dual-core may not sound very appealing to those looking for pretty fast smart phones, but trust us, the Lumia 920 is up to the task. The storage capacity is at 32GB, however, its major drawback is the fact that the phone doesn’t have a microSD slot, limiting your file storage. As for its mass and design:

Dimensions : 130.3 x 70.8 x 10.7 mm, 99 cc (5.13 x 2.79 x 0.42 in) (11mm thick)
Weight : 185 grams
Display : 768 x 1280 pixels, 4.5 inches (~332 ppi)

One of the phone’s major setbacks and source of criticism is that it is pretty heavy and thick, in direct contrast with all smart phone manufacturers who are doing valiant efforts to make their smart phones light and thin. However, despite the bulk, the phone still carries an impressive punch and would easily fit on your pocket.

The phone’s polycarbonate shell epitomizes protection. It is very scratch resistant. The same is true with the Corning Gorilla Glass 2 screen. The display is a top-quality, high 768×1280 resolution LCD touch screen with 332 ppi (pixels per inch). The bottom of the phone holds the microUSB slot along with the loudspeakers and microphones while the standard 3.5 mm audio jack and microSIM slot is located at the top. The right side of the phone has three buttons, the volume button, the lock/unlock key and the camera button which is a pretty nifty feature to activate the camera even if the phone is in its sleep mode. Above the display sits the 1.3 MP secondary camera and some of its sensors while the primary 8 MP camera is at the back along with the dual LED flash. Speaking of the devil, let’s talk about the camera.

Lumia 920

Features : 8 megapixels, can take photos at 16:9 (3264×2448 pixels) and 4:3 (3552×2000) ratios., Carl Zeiss Optics, Optical Image Stabilization, PureView, autofocus
Videos : 1080p videos at 30fps, video stabilization
Hands-down, the Lumia 920 possesses one of the best cameras in the market. The phone takes great night pictures and is like a handy point-and-shoot camera. It can take great, scenic photos and it comes with Lenses, an application that allows users to choose the visual effects they want. Speaking of applications.

lumia 920

The phone hosts a LOT of features and acquirable applications. It has all the basic utilities like an Alarm clock, Calendar and Calculator. It also allows you to check and edit your documents via a free Windows Office viewer which can be synched with a computer. There are also tons of apps and games available in the Windows Phone Store (but not as many as Apple and Google Play, but is growing by the minute). As for the battery, it may last 400 hours of standby time, 10 hours of talk time and 67 hours of music playback.

Overall, the Nokia Lumia 920 may not be as mainstream as the iPhone and Galaxy Series. However, it still packs a tremendous array of features beneath its polycarbonate casing. It might be the shining luminescent smart phone you’re looking for.

Taking Care of Your iPhone 5′s Software

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First off, the iPhone 5 comes in three variants in terms of memory capacity, 16 GB, 32 GB and 64 GB. Basically, if you’re more of a person who likes taking pictures, plays A LOT of games and downloads gazillions of multimedia content, then the higher memory variants are for you. However, if you use the gadget strictly for communication and information purposes, then you’re better off with the ones with lower memory. In this blog entry, we will talk about ways in taking care of your iPhone 5′s software and apps.

Download only what you need.

iphone 5

Well, like what was mentioned above, some people like downloading gazillion apps. Most of these go unused and just sit there, like clothes gathering dust inside the closet. Thing is, these apps take some space, especially the ones that are larger. Make sure to just download what you really need. It is recommended that you download apps that allow you to do a variety of stuff in one go. Organizers, alarm clocks and reference materials are your best bet. Content like music, games, books and videos must be downloaded moderately as you won’t be able to maximize their use if you keep on downloading various content every five minutes. Lastly, be sure to organize your apps in folders, not because it’ll help out in the software on your smartphone, but because it’ll save time and effort. You don’t have to intensively look for it.

Get apps from trusted parties.

There are some companies whose applications cause the iPhone to crash. Always be sure to always check the application’s user reviews and comments before downloading. Also, if you’re not sure of the app maker, be sure to get some sort of background information about them. Your safest bets are the apps taken from Apple themselves. The best game developers are Gamevil, Gameloft and EA.

Take care of it – Physically.

A foolproof way to maintain the conditions of your iPhone’s software is to take care of its physical properties, meaning you must clean it properly, enclose it in a case or skin and protect it from the elements. Good, functioning hardware is essential for a well-functioning software. Remember, the phone having the best condition is the best functioning one.

Never let young children download apps.

harga iphone 5s

Children absolutely and irrevocably love playing games. Letting them play is one thing, however, allowing them to download is another. Be sure that they don’t download too much as it might not be favorable to you and your iPhone 5. Heck, it can get downright annoying. Also, it’s a precaution. They might accidentally download mature content that might have sexual, gory and reserved-for-adults themes. Always be sure to supervise and help them out.

Utilize free apps.

There are tons of free applications in the App Store. Sure, the ones that needs to be bought are good apps, but seriously, there are good and FREE apps out there!

Lastly, don’t jailbreak.

iphone5

Never, ever jailbreak your phone if you wish to the most out of Apple’s services. Why buy an iPhone 5 if you’re going to jailbreak it anyway? Jail breaking voids your warranty, rendering you unable to avail of Apple’s services once you do it. Yes, you may be able to utilize applications and get content that you would not have been able to avail if you didn’t jailbreak, however, you wouldn’t be able to get Apple’s either. It’ll also slow your device down and make it prone to crashing.

Polamatic: Android’s Polaroid Camera

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Since the digitalization of cameras, taking pictures with the use of traditional film cameras has become obsolete and unpractical. While films don’t really cost a penny and you cannot afford to make a lot of mistakes while taking pictures, most film companies have adopted to the digital age and while those who couldn’t went bankrupt.

polamatic 2 1 update screen

One major company that still exists today is Polaroid, known in the past for their instant cameras (ones that immediately developed the image via a self developing film). There is an air of uniqueness and retro look qualities that Polaroid cameras possess, which is why people mostly prefer these cameras. Recently, they have launched an application for the Android operating system known as Polamatic, currently available on Google Play.

 

Basically, the application allows you to capture or import and edit a photo by selecting 36 Polaroid frames including the classic Polaroid white border, 20 photo filters and other features. The frames are high quality scans of the company’s new and vintage Polaroid picture frames. The photo filters allow you to customize your photos in order for you to reach your desired look, which includes Polaroid’s retro look, which I’m pretty sure a lot of people desire. In adding captions, the app doesn’t lag behind from its competitors. You may choose from 24 fonts and a variety of text customization options.

Polamatic Fstoppers Review
The thing about the app is that it’s pretty useful for people who own Android devices that have advanced and high quality cameras, like the Samsung Galaxy S4 for instance (soon, the Galaxy S4 will have a version that has a 21 megapixel camera known as the Zoom, imagine using Polamatic with it). The app also gives you the option to take pictures directly with the front or rear camera. You can then control the settings like flash and grid. It also allows you to share the pictures you have taken and edited online in social media websites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Flickr.

In terms of storage, Polamatic saves your photos in your gallery, with the option of preserving the unedited one. You are also able to crop the pics within the Polaroid Classic Border. The app is able to get information about your approximate or precise location and may use additional battery power. Remember, this application doesn’t allow the device to go to “Sleep Mode” when it’s being used. Be sure to return to the main menu of your device before s  toring it.

Currently, the application has gained favorable reviews among its users and it costs just a penny below a dollar.

Polamatic for Polaroid Filter selection

The intangibles the Polamatic camera dishes out is it makes old Polaroid camera users feel like they have been warped to the past by using the application. It brings back old memories of the time when pictures came out of thin slots just below the lenses immediately after taking them. It makes new photos look old and brings out that retro feeling experienced by looking at old Polaroid pictures. Aside from its practical functions, it simply is a great tool to experience nostalgia.

Motorola Moto X : The Upcoming Upstart?

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motorola moto x

Motorola was once on top of the smartphone in Kenya. An innovator, avant-guard and one of the first manufacturers in the cell phone market, having released their first handheld portable telephone in 1973. By the late 90′s and early 2000′s, the company was known as the top cellular phone producer, at par with Nokia. However, the fairy tale would come to a screeching halt in the end of the first decade of the 2nd millennium when a number of manufacturers and companies popped up, introducing smart phones which sold like hotcakes in the market. The company failed to adopt and lost billions in revenue, making it split into two independent companies, Motorola Solutions and Motorola Mobility. However, in May 2012, Google had acquired Motorola Mobility, the phone manufacturer of the two companies. The company is known to release flip phones like the RAZR. The phone stood out among others and is easily one of the most popular phones before the era of the smart phones.

Currently however, despite the merge with Google, Motorola has been unable to stage a successful comeback with its range of newly-released smart phones being overshadowed by competitors like Apple and Samsung. However, there are rumors surfacing that the newest product of the Google-Motorola mix up will be released this year.

The Specifications of which are the following

Motorola Moto X

Processor – 1.7 GHz, Dual-core MSM8960 Pro
Display – 720p
Storage – 2 GB, up to 16 GB
Camera – 10 MP front, 2 MP Rear
Operating System – Android 4.2.2 Jellybean
The rumored Motorola Moto X will sport a 1.7 GHz dual core MSM8960 Pro processor, which is guaranteed to provide fast browsing, application switching and is able to support a multitude of programs. Although the dimensions are not mentioned, it is rumored that the smart phone will have a 720 pixel display, a bit below par considering the quality of screen resolutions its competitors have. The phone’s internal storage meanwhile is a bit of a letdown, however, it is to be seen if it will have a microSD slot. The cameras meanwhile, are at par with the current demands of the market, with a 10 MP primary cam and 2 MP secondary. Although the features are not that known yet, it is worth to be checked out. Running the show is Android’s v4.2.2 Jelly Bean, guaranteeing you that you will be able to have access to the latest and hottest applications currently in the market. Judging from the quality of the products Motorola has released in the past decade, this is projected to be top quality product.

Motorola Moto X

With its given specifications, the Moto X may not be as impressive, however, it is rumored Google and Motorola invested a lot into this project meaning, it will be of great quality and something that will hopefully make a dent in the consumer electronics market. Will it be able to upend the current kingpins of the smart phone market? The selling factor of which will definitely be the awesome camera, but like the spreading rumors, the only definite thing is the duo will release an epic smart phone this year.

What to know about Android when buying a mobile phone in Kenya

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There is a craze in Kenya with getting the latest mobile phone, the revolution of mobile phones in Kenya has been too fast and managed to get everybody on board. So what do you do if you get to a shop, and there are so many phones to choose from? Let’s say they all look exceptionally good from the outside and are good to behold. Why should you chose one and leave the rest on the shelf? Various factors will distinguish between what you will pick and what you will leave. One of them is the operating system. Most cell phones in Kenya use the Android operating system. Let us go through the revolution of the Android operating system on our phones.

P.S. To begin with, Android is an open source operating system. In a layman’s explanation, it means that it can be modified and shared because it is made in such a way that its design is publicly accessible. Apart from other soft wares that are used by most mobile phones in Kenya, over 74% of smartphone users in Kenya are on Android. This makes it important for users to know and learn about the operating system that they are on.

ANDROID VERSIONS AND THEIR HISTORY

Android history

Android 1.0

It was the first Android version and was used by HTC. By this time mobile phones in Kenya were simple and provided the basic functions of a phone. Smartphones and Android was a vocabulary not used by most people, and if used by any chance, it was precious knowledge restricted to very few people.

Android 1.1

It was followed by Android 1.1 version which also did not have a code name and still at this time cell phones in Kenya were laid back, and we did not have much to talk about on Android. The benefits of the two version are that they allowed for some functionalities such as blue tooth, Gmail calendar, Google maps, etc. so far most of the functions have been built on to provide more sophisticated versions to be used on cell phones.

Android 1.5

Android 1.5 also called cupcake, and it was the first of its kind to have a codename, and it could allow users to explore third-party keyboards with auto predictions, and this was interesting. Moving from the basic functions of the phone to getting something that could only be accessed by a computer was a whole new thing. At this time very few people had Android phones and there was not a lot to choose from.

Android 1.6

Android 1.6 also had a dessert name i.e. Donut. Quite a common name in the Kenyan household, but not in mobile phones. Therefore, it was something to be excited about. It came with more advanced functions than the preceding version and could allow users to monitor their battery usage, so every time you see the indicator on how much charge your phone has or does not have, this is where the journey was begun. It is also where the grouping of gallery apps begun and it was easier for one to get what they are looking for in their gallery. Previous cell phones in Kenya had everything in the same pot; this brought a variation in the sense that everything was clean and sorted.

Android 2.0

Android 2.0 the predeceasing Android versions had begun the trend of having a desert code name. This version did not disappoint as got the name éclair…. Pretty impressive. With cell phones easing the ability to access email addresses, this version could allow a user access more than one email account on the same device. It also dealt with the agony that most Kenyans have to go through every time they lose their contacts due to losing of their phones. This is because it was now possible to synchronize contacts on their cell phones with their Gmail accounts.

Android 2.2

Android 2.2 also known as Froyo, by now over 80% of Kenyans had mobile phones with 30% of this population owning smartphones. It was an improved version of the previous achievements. It could allow for the creation of hotspots, and people were able to share Wi-Fi. This took Kenyan mobile phones and the technology to a higher level.  Access to the internet was not limited to the cyber cafes; Kenyans could get it anywhere and share it with friends. The knowledge of Android software was now not reserved to few individuals but most people more so the young population had knowledge on the same.

Android 2.3

Gingerbread, by now a lot had been done on Android, and this came with a major improvement on mobile phones such as a new keyboard with faster input than previous ones. Internet calls were also possible with this Android version. This one could enable one select text, and one could copy and paste and do basic stuff that was only possible with computers. It was incredible, and Kenyans with smart phones with this version thought that this was it but they in for a big surprise.

Android 3.0

Honey comb. This one was optimized for larger screens such as tablets. By this time mobile phones in Kenya was a whole new thing, it was not just about having a gadget that could communicate. It was about what is trending, the new features, and new developments. This version could allow multi-tasking and one could carry out more than one function on the phone. One could customize their home screens, and it gave the owner a personal feel of the phone. Tethering was made possible via Bluetooth. Transfer of media files from the phone to the PC was also easier.

Android 4.0

Ice cream sandwich. Most mobile phones in Kenya that are advanced have a way of detecting the smile and triggering a photo as a result of the smile detection. This is the Android version which introduced this function. Previous versions could not allow cell phones to hide notifications, but this version gave room for such privacy. This is where the idea of screen shots begun, and so far the journey has been fun and adventurous.

Android 4.1

Jelly bean. The introduction of the jelly bean made the response to cell phones input faster. Updating apps was more improved and easier. Widgets were resizable and the use of mobile phones was easier than before. There was an improvement in the Android beam and sharing of data to nearby Android devices was faster and efficient.

Android 4.4

Kit Kat, Kenyans are known for multi-tasking and this version enables a mobile phone to be faster when it comes to multi-tasking. If you are tired of handling your phone but can still access your text message or your call using another gadget apart from the phone, this is the Android version that made that a reality. This version is cool as it provides for wireless printing. What else could a Kenyan mobile phone user ask for?

Android 5.0

Lollipop. As its name suggests, this is a sweet approach to Android. It offers a more objective approach to interaction between the user and the phone. The content response to touch is very fast. The most exciting part about this version is that you chose the people to interact with using your device. It gives you options for people you may want to receive calls from etc. it gives you an edge in decision making concerning your device. It comes with a power saver which we need most of the times in our Kenyan cell phones considering the power challenges that we are at times faced with. It comes with a Google smart lock which keeps the phone unlocked when it is with the owner. That said and done, Android is always full of surprises, and this was not the end of it.

Android 6.0

Marshmallow. This is a refinement of the previous Android versions, and as usual, the more refined some things are, the better they become. It simplifies your security with a simple finger print. Kenyan mobile phones are prone to cases of theft and with this Android, there is the option of unlocking the phone with your fingerprint making it safer for you. With the issue of electricity in Kenya, mobile phones ought to be in such a way that they save more and use less. This version limits the use of Apps when at stand by therefore no need to worry about charge drain. It gave exactly what every kenyan needed in a phone.

What’s in the future

future of mobile phone

All said and done all the above Android versions are on various cell phones in our Kenyan market. Every day someone walks up to a phone stall to buy a new phone. In this case, what matters is not a new phone but the operating system the phone is using. The next time you walk into a shop to get a new phone, it is important that you not only stay updated with a smartphone, but you also get the latest Android version to be up to date with the evolution of the Android operating system. Depending on what you need in a phone, android is the way to go, the latest the better.

If you are keen you have now noticed that every Android version comes with a dessert name that is in the alphabetical order. An Android lover can now be on the guessing side and probably give gueses on what is to come in the future of Android.

iPhone Games: The Strategy Genre

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Looking for the strategy games to play in your iPhone 5? Don’t fret, we’ve got them all listed in this entry. Your gaming options in the App Store is limitless due to, well, the number of applications that are currently in it – and it’s still increasing as we speak. People playing games spend equally the same time looking for the right games as playing them. As you may already know, there are a ton of games in the strategy genre available. Although people prefer to get consoles to play video games, the ones in the App Store are as equally impressive, challenging – and addicting.

Field RunnersFieldrunners Series. This basically is a tower defense game wherein the goal is to destroy all of the enemy units who are passing through the map just to get to their escape point. One enemy unit would equate to you losing a life. There are a variety of towers to choose from, missile launchers, gatling guns, flame towers, laser beams and ones that are shooting green stuff that slows the enemies’ movement. It is a fun, addicting game to play and is guaranteed more than 48 hours of gameplay. The second installment, Fieldrunners 2 costs $3 – worth every penny.

Plants vs Zombies

Plants vs Zombies

Plants vs Zombies. Chances are, you must have played this already. So, do I have to explain everything? Oh well, to those who happen to not know what this game is all about (which planet did you come from?!), the goal is to stop the zombie hordes from crossing your lawn, backyard and roof into your house by using plants like peashooters (that literally shoot peas), Wall-nuts (that are literally WALL NUTS), squash (that literally squashes zombies) and jalapeno peppers (which torch zombies). It has over 50 levels with some minigames. There are a variety of plants and the zombies can be pretty much anything – from an old bloke across the street to a football star to one dancing Michael Jackson’s thriller.

Final Fantasy Tactics: The War Of The Lions

The War Of The Lions

Final Fantasy Tactics: The War Of The Lions. This game is a classic. It was first released for the Playstation console back in 1998 in North America, garnering very high scores from gaming critics. It currently has an active following as well. The game focuses on turn-based battles in a map with various terrains that enhance your battle capabilities or become a liability to you. It is based in a fictional country called Ivalice and based after medieval Europe, however, it has MAGIC in it. The story is a literary masterpiece as well, although I won’t be telling you what it’s about. It currently costs $15.99 in the App Store but trust me, it’s worth it, especially if you’re a Final Fantasy fan.

Worms 2 a

Worms 2: Armageddon. This game is equally as addictive as the abovementioned titles. In this game, you use worms equipped with a LOT modern and farfetched weapons. The game is pretty humorous as well, especially if you are playing with your friends. The weapons include rocket launchers, baseball bats, grenades and giant concrete donkeys that crush anything beneath it.

Games. People. Love. Playing. Games. People prefer getting video game consoles to get the maximum gaming experience. However, most gamers (not exactly avid gamers) prefer the casual genre. You know, like the games you play just to kill time like Temple Run and Plants vs Zombies. However, in the past (just like most people who own Playstation, Wii and Xbox consoles today), people took video games very seriously. Today, there are remakes, improvements and versions of old console and PC games that have been custom-fitted into your iPhone 5.It just brought out the childlike tendencies of the people who played the games back in the day. Although compatible with other Apple devices, we’re pretty sure you’re reading this through your iPhone 5 or iPad. So, sit back, relax, enjoy and make sure to read on before ever thinking of looking through the App Store.

Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions

This game was originally released in June 1997 in Japan and January 1998 in North America for the Playstation 1 console. It is a tactical, turn-based single-player RPG game developed by Japanese video game giant Squaresoft (now Square Enix) and Sony. The game is played by controlling several characters in your team in a map against other AI characters. The goal is to level up your characters and of course, to finish the game. This game is an absolute, must-have for RPG fans. It has been rated by a nearly all video game critics, garnering high scores and named by many as one of the best games of all time. The story centers around a member of the Knight family of Beoulve, Ramza. It is patterned around medieval Europe, just with magic spells and magical creatures. It is an elaborate, well-written piece of literature and can easily be a bestseller if made into a book. The theme involves assassination, deceit and betrayal and revolves around a power struggle for the throne by two sides. Imagine the delight of the players of this game when it was announced to be available in the App Store. It takes up 508 MB of storage space and costs $15.99.

Sid Meier’s Pirates!

Sid Meier’s Pirates

The game available on the App Store is the 2004 game which happens to also be a remake of the 1987 game. The game pretty much garnered positive reviews from critics, garnering an outstanding 9.2 from GameSpot and IGN. The game is based in the 17th and 18th century, a time of pirates, galleons, traders and world superpowers, the English, French, Spanish and Dutch. The player is able to navigate the seas by using a ship (duh), capture other ships, raid towns, declare war, and serve the chosen country’s army. The game includes historical figures like Henry Morgan, Black Beard, Stede Bonnett and Captain Kidd. Overall, the freedoms to choose to do whatever you want whether to be a noble or a criminal gives the game an edge. The game takes up 462 MB of your storage space and costs a whopping (not exactly) $2.99 on the App Store.