I have only ever owned two brands of smartphones – Blackberries and iPhones. I’m an Apple fan; I love Apple products and I’ve owned many of them. Currently, I own an iPad 3, an iPhone 4 and a mid-2012 Macbook Pro –I’m deeply entrenched in the Apple ecosystem and it has worked really well for me. I’ve never had anything favorable to say about Android devices, but I’ve never actually used one extensively either.
I’ve been using a Samsung Galaxy S4 for exactly one week and… wow. Transitioning from a 4 x 5 grid, 640 x 960 pixels, 3.5 inches 1 GHz 2010 iPhone 4 running iOS 6 to a 1080 x 1920 pixels, 5.0 inches, Quad-core 1.6 GHz, 2013 Samsung S4 running Android’s Jelly Bean, wow, wow, wow. The difference in specs is ridiculous, but even bigger for me is the difference in operating system functionality.
The Galaxy S4, Samsung’s latest flagship phone, is the successor to the S3, a widely popular phone that did really well ( and still does). No doubt one of the best phones to start my Android experience with. My introduction to the S4 and the Android operating system was weird. It went something like ( in this particular order):
1. Yeah! this is a pretty cool phone: The novelty of a new phone, obviously curious and excited to “get into it”.
2, Jesus, I’m overwhelmed; I have no idea where to start: Personalizing the phone was a challenge – you know, the basic things like changing the notification sounds for apps, understanding and utilizing widgets, configuring the home screen etc
3. I hate this damn phone; I’m going back to my iPhone: After not being able to figure things out, I started to become frustrated. I also missed some iOS features, albeit small ones, but sometimes small features are the best ones; features you’ll never miss until you don’t have them anymore. The openness of Android vs Apple’s closed restricted approach is really what sets both platforms apart. Both have their pros and cons. I’ll give examples. Because of Apple’s “closed” approach you’ll find that your experience on the platform is usually consistent, i.e if you’re using a third party or a system application you can be guaranteed that some procedures will always be the same, one such example of this is copying and pasting. The procedure of copying and pasting is the same, no matter what application you use.
Another system-wide feature that I love is tapping the status bar in iOS to “jump to the top” of an application. So, let’s say you’re scrolling through some pictures on instagram and you want to get back to the top of the page, you would simply tap the status bar once and it will instantly bring you back to the top of the page. Those are examples of benefits to Apple’s closed nature; a consistent and predictable experience. Now because of this closed approach, iOS is not without its limitations. A couple of which are: system apps like the native calendar, calculator, email, photos, messages, camera etc cannot be changed from being your default app. So, let’s say you downloaded a third party calendar app. You would not be able to set said app as your default application.
These are some of the many annoyance of iOS, but I forgot about those annoyances briefly while using Android. Unlike iOS, you don’t have a consistent experience across applications. For example, copying/pasting text may vary from app to app. I found this extremely annoying. There’s also no streamlined way to jump to the top of an application.
4. Ok, I’m starting to figure things out. It’s not so bad: I decided to look past this and focus more on the virtues of the phone and realized there were many that I liked. Some of which are Android features while others are specific to the Samsung S4.
5. Wow, I love this phone: I love the LED light on the front of the phone that can flash in any color you want ( a particular color can represent a specific notification), I love the S4′s brilliant 5″ AMOLED screen, the battery life is amazing – with tethering on, screen brightness at 100%, GPS on and other features I still managed to go through a whole day with battery life left ( from 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM). I love airview, but found the other features that Samsung is pushing to be gimmicky. I should also note that these features are limited to system apps. Widgets can be really useful on a phone with a screen as big as the Samsung s4′S. See my schedule and my to-do list at a glance is really useful, unlike on iOS where I have to actually open the application to see appointments and to-dos. The ability to add widgets to the lock screen is also a plus.
Another general Android feature that I like is the interconnectivity between apps. This is a really powerful feature that has me hooked. Let’s say you took a picture from your iPhone’s camera and you wanted to edit it. To do this you’d have 1. Take the picture, 2. Open the app you want to edit it in, 3. Browse for the picture in the app 3. Open and edit. The process would be the same for other applications. If you wanted to upload it to Dropbox for example, you would need to actually open dropbox and find the picture to upload it. I should also mention that you’re limited to uploading videos and photos in iOS ( You can however get around this with a little hackery)
On Android the process is much easier. You would simply take the picture and share with any application that supports it. Whether it’s sending it to dropbox, twitter, your picture editing app or wherever.
The S4′s camera is great, but I’ve chosen not to focus on features that have been widely reviewed elsewhere online.
To conclude, The Samsung 4S is a really powerful phone that can be overwhelming at first, but you’ll grow to love it more everyday. If you’re an iPhone user and you’re considering an Android phone to switch to this would be a safe bet. You’ll miss a couple iOS features at first, but you’ll love the openness of Android.
Disclosure: My Samsung Galaxy S4 was a gift from Samsung. This, however, did not influence how I reviewed the phone.
I don’t usually do app reviews for Jamaica iOS apps, usually because they’re underwhelming, but Jamaica YP got it right! It’s an app I’ve wanted for years.
The layout is basic, but pleasing to the eye. You’re presented with 12 default categories when you first open the app. They are: Attorneys, Auto Parts, Computer Sales, Dentists, Doctors, Hardware, Hotels, Optical, Pharmacies, Restaurants, Schools and Used Cars. There’s also a search bar at the top. You have the option of typing or speaking (facilitated by nuance) your search term for a particular business or a category that isn’t in the default 12.
Tapping one of the icons on the home screen takes you to a listing of businesses, There are two views. The first is a vertical listing of businesses and the second is a map view. On the former view The name of the business, phone number and address is shown. A mail, ad ( if the business has an actual ad in the directory you can view) and web icon is shown if applicable to that particular business. For the vertical listing view there are 3 sort options: Distance ( How far the business is from you), Relevance and Alphabetical order.
Clicking on a business’ name will give you additional details about it and also give you access to additional features, namely Add Contact ( adds the entry to your address book automatically, Share ( shares business details via email) and Directions ( Takes you to the iOS maps application and plots route to the business from your current location)
As I said earlier, this is a well put together app so I don’t have a lot of complaints. Apart from the occasional freezing and crashing it holds up pretty well. I couldn’t ask for much else. The sort by distance feature can also be particularly useful when you’re in a parish and you need to find something nearby e.g a restaurant, gas station etc.
Most of Apple’s customers have probably never given that green light a second thought, but its creation speaks to a massive competitive advantage for Apple: Operations. This is the world of manufacturing, procurement, and logistics in which the new chief executive officer, Tim Cook, excelled, earning him the trust of Steve Jobs
This is true.
We’re happy to announce the inclusion of Google Authenticator as a new multifactor authentication option for LastPass. With the latest LastPass plugin and a supported mobile device, you can now use your phone in conjunction with your master password to generate a secure key that is needed to login to your account. Authenticator token support has been a hotly anticipated addition to LastPass, and we’re happy to make good on that obligation to our users.
We strongly believe in multifactor as being an excellent way to protect your sensitive data, and so we are opening this feature up to all LastPass users, including free accounts. For further information on setting up your account with Google Authenticator, or running it on unsupported devices, please see our helpdesk article.
This is great news. I’ve been a long time user of lastpass. And I’ve written about them more than once on this blog.
In February 2004, I attended an Internet Marketing conference called “Pubcon” in Orlando, Florida. This conference was a personal tipping point for me, as I was able to network with persons from all over the world who were active (and working independently) in the field of Internet marketing. Pubcon helped me to realize that I could eventually leave my 9-5 job, and become an entrepreneur.
Sandor will be a presenter at Caribbean BETA. Marc Canter will also be a guest speaker. I’ll also be there.
My first ever blog contest is over and the winners have been chosen randomly using the “And the Winner is…” WordPress plugin, check it out if you want to run a competition over at your blog.
So, without further ado…the Winners are:
Sir. Michael, His Comment: “People say I’m addicted to my Blackberry but I’m not, I’m addicted to the people in connects me to and thats why I love it.”
Tonian Lindo, Her Comment: “I love my Blackberry because it keeps me connected on the go to friends and family anywhere in the world through RIM’s native BlackBerry Messenger at a set cost per month.”
Jovan, His Comment: “ I love my Blackberry because it makes me seem like the most efficient civil servant Barbados has ever seen.”
Tonaya, Her Comment: “I love my blackberry because it is cute, trendy, and up to date, yet it is functional, efficient, and easy to use I save A LOT of money buying phonecards, almost all of my friends have a blackberry so i jus PING PING PING ”
Marcus Bird, His Comment: “????????????????????(^_^)”
Kasense, Her Comment: “ Easy to use, fastest and cheapest way to communicate plus allows me to organize and store important files for school or work and that’s why i love my blackberry ”
I will be contacting all of you for some information soon.
Thanks to everyone who entered, What will I give away next? We’ll see!