Apple’s Phil Schiller Unhappy With Instagram’s Expansion, Believes App “Jumped The Shark When It Went To Android”

 

Instagram’s release for Android generated an enormous amount of enthusiasm, but also significant angst among iPhone users. Apparently among the people who were unhappy about Instagram’s recent expansion was Apple Senior VP Phil Schiller. 9to5Mac reported one of its readers reached out to Schiller after noticing that his Instagram account, under the name @schiller, had vanished suddenly. Schiller responded directly to the reader through Twitter highlighting Instagram “jumped the shark when it went to Android”. Ouch.

Oh there’s more too. Another 9to5Mac reader named Clayton Braasch asked Schiller to elaborate on his statement. Braasch shares in a post on his blog Schiller’s response. Schiller contends that Instagram is still a “great app and community”, but liked the fact it was limited to a small and select group of early adopters. Since the growth and expansion of Instagram, Schiller believes “the signal to noise ratio is different”. Looks like he would have rather seen all of those Instagram alternatives for Android users instead of Instagram being available for Android.

Thoughts?

source: 9to5Mac
via: The Verge

Barclaycard introduces PayTag utilizing NFC stickers, what about Google Wallet?

Mobile payments utilizing NFC is still in it’s infancy and in fact really hasn’t grown all that much. Part of the reason is the lack of devices that support Near Field Communications. Google announced their program nearly a year ago and kicked it off this past fall, but one thing that’s lacking from the announcement is NFC stickers. Google mentioned that NFC Stickers would be available for the millions of phones that don’t have NFC. That’s literally 90 to 95% of phones out in the wild. The fact that it’s pretty much only in the U.S. doesn’t help either.


Read more

Samsung Galaxy S III sports a disguise and smiles for the camera

After hundreds of leaked pictures, blurrycam exclusives and ropey mock-ups, the Galaxy S III has decided to strut its stuff on video for the first time. As ever this could well turn out to be a convincing hoax however this is about as authentic as we’ve seen to date. Samsung recently spoke out claiming that the identify of the Galaxy S III has been carefully protected and that none of the so called leaks have been accurate to date. Samsung also added that all test models are housed with a generic case in order to prevent any such leaks. With that in mind, this could well add some credibility to this video as the phone under the lens certainly sits in a bland case.

What we can take from this video are the specs of the device. We can see a quad-core 1.4 GHz Exynos processor, 1GB RAM, an 8 MP camera, NFC and a 1184 x 720 resolution HD screen. TouchWiz is also (unfortunately) present however I still hold out hope for the rumoured dual boot into stock ICS or TouchWiz. The Navigation buttons are on screen which would make this device the second phone since the Galaxy Nexus to use this feature, definitely a welcome inclusion.

So while these latest pics and video do not necessarily confirm 100% that what we’re looking at is definitely the Galaxy S III, what we can see is that this is a high end device with some impressive specs. It’s only a couple  more weeks until May 3rd when we’ll finally find out!

Check out the pics and the video and let us know if you think this could be the real deal in the comments below.

 

 

YouTube Preview Image

source : androidcentral

Review: Football Manager 2012 for Android

 

The History

For young football fans (soccer for my American friends) of the 80′s and 90′s, Football Manager wasn’t a game, it was a way of life. For the purists amongst us, you will no doubt remember the game by its original name Championship Manager. This was a game that you could load up on a cold, wet Saturday morning with a view to playing one or two matches before realising that it’s nearly time for your Sunday night bath ready for school the next day. When engrossed in Football Manager, days seem like hours and hours seem like minutes such is the manner in which the game sucks you in.

For the uninitiated, Football Manager is not your typical football (soccer) game, you don’t use a direction pad to run your players around the pitch etc. Football Manager, as the name obviously suggests, puts you as the manager of your chosen team and tasks you with the day-t0-day running of a football club. This covers everything from stadia, player transfers, finances, match tactics and so much more. You set up everything behind the scenes, pick your team and then sit back and watch as your players perform according to your instructions. Depending on the team you manage a successful season could be anything from winning the Champions League to surviving relegation to the bottom division.

A blast from the past?

The Main Game

From its humble beginnings on the Commodore Amiga and Atari ST, Football Manager is one of those games that receives an annual update around the same time each year updating the player rosters and adding new features. It hit the PSP and iOS last year and finally it’s landed on Android.

Football Manager Handheld is not a direct port of the desktop version, anyone expecting that could end up slightly disappointed. The handheld version is a cut down version that’s designed to be easier to access in order to cater for the more casual gamer who may just be looking to kill some time on the daily commute. The game transfers to a touch-screen format nicely with a simplified layout, there are less options and not as many facets of the managerial role. Let me reassure you now, a stripped down game does not mean stripped down fun, the game is still as much fun and just as addictive as ever.

All of the major leagues and clubs are represented and there’s a huge database of over 20,000 real life players. The main match view will be familiar to those who have followed the franchise over the years. Watching the match involves watching 22 coloured dots swarming around the screen, moving along a white dot (the football). It may not sound like edge of the seat stuff but just try it for yourself and see!

Just like the desktop version, the game lasts as long as your managerial career does. You might find yourself poached by clubs from other countries, you may find yourself called up to manage a national team or perhaps you’ll get the sack. I recall entering the 20th season of my career on the 2002/2003 desktop version of the game, an achievement that I won’t (but undoubtedly could) replicate on the handheld edition.

 

 

Challenge Mode

In order to really make the most of the handheld edition, there is a separate challenge mode designed for the more casual gamer. Challenge mode throws you into the middle of one of four set scenarios where you are tasked with leading your team through a particular crisis or campaign. The challenge must be complete before the end of the season.

The challenges include scenarios such as steering a poor performing club from relegation, avoid being sacked from an injury struck club, and leading a top club to an undefeated season. They are each straight forward enough to pick up and play easily however they are tough enough to keep Football Manager veterans satisfied. All in all, a welcome edition to the main game.

 

 

Summary

Football Manager Handheld 2012 will cost you £6.99 (approx $11) and brings all of the polish and playability you would expect from a Sega title. Long time followers of the series will enjoy this game, the stripped down handheld edition actually feels a lot like the desktop version did circa 2003 which, in my opinion, was when the game was at its best. Subsequent releases became a little too complex with the sheer number of options available almost getting in the way of just playing the core game.

Casual gamers and Football Manager newcomers may well enjoy the main game however the four challenges are sure to be the ideal way to introduce people to the game and allow them to cut their teeth before progressing to the big wide world of career mode.

This is an addictive and immersive game that will help the longest train journey pass in a flash as well as being responsible for losing entire weekends without trace. So what are you waiting for? Dig out your sheepskin coat and hit the link below to get downloading!

 


Google Play Store

 

 

HTC customers want thinner smartphones versus improved battery life according to research

We all have the perfect smartphone design brewing in our heads. We visit our local cellphone carrier and browse the net searching for a phone that will encompass everything on our wish list. HTC wants the same thing for their customers and has done some research over the last year to find out what features are most preferred these days. Afterall, what better way to save money on manufacturing costs than making phones that they know most of their customer base will want to purchase? The results showed that the majority of customers preferred to have a thinner, sleeker phone versus one that would be a little thicker for the purpose of housing a larger battery.

With this information now at hand, HTC has stated that improvements on battery life will still be a focus but not at the expense of thinner design, but rather though enhanced software efficiency and power management. Motorola couldn’t decide which route to take with their DROID RAZR line and opted to release both the super thin DROID RAZR and the battery conscious DROID RAZR MAXX. So what is the verdict? Is HTC’s information correct? What other features would you like to see HTC focus on as well? Let your thoughts be heard in the comments below.

source: theverge

500px Arrives On Android, Showcases Really Great Photography

First, let’s get this out of the way. 500px is NOT like Instagram. It won’t allow you to snap quick pics with your handset, add filters, and upload them to share with friends. No, 500px is more of a photography community where the uploading is done through their web site. These are not your typical phone pics, either. These are, in most cases, taken with full DSLR cameras, and tend toward more artistic and professional-looking compositions.

500px also allows you, as a member, to not only upload your pictures, but sell them on wrapped canvas through their site. Nice touch. They offer three tiers of membership: Free, Plus ($19.95/year), and Awesome ($49.95/year). The free membership limits you to 10 uploads per week. Exploring their web site feels almost like Pinterest but for great photography.

The Android app is now available and runs on Android 2.2 and higher, and looks great on a tablet. Here’s a list of features as displayed on their Play Store page.


Read more

Verizon Q1 Financials Show Highest Growth In Three Years

Verizon just released their Q1 financials and let’s just say… things are mighty green. Their wireless division has had its highest growth in the past three years, with a 7.7% increase in revenues year-over-year, and 8.9% growth in retail. To top it off, their revenue from data services grew an astounding 21.1%.

The addition of 500,000 new postpaid customers doesn’t hurt, bringing their total to 88 million. Of those, 47% use a smartphone, with more being added every day as they expand their LTE coverage. Looks like Big Red has money to burn, but the high cost of running a huge network will require much of that money to continue growing. Read the full press release after the break.


Read more

High Demand Causes Snapdragon S4 Chip Shortage

 

In Qualcomm’s earnings call today, the company said that they “cannot secure enough supply” of 28nm Snapdragon S4 chips as the demand continues to increase. We’ve seen manufacturers like Motorola switching to the S4 for its LTE compatibility. To combat the short supply, Qualcomm is looking at alternative chipsets, including their Fusion 2 series which can apparently sometimes be used as a substitute. Outsourcing to other manufacturers is also on the table, but Qualcomm admits that some non-Qualcomm chipsets will probably be used while it ramps up their own production by the end of the year. Higher-end handsets will get priority, while mid-range devices will be the first to get replacement chips. We have yet to know exactly how this will affect performance, but the replacement chips are supposedly similar enough that users won’t necessarily notice a difference.

source: seeking alpha
via: the verge

[Deal] Costco Taking Rebate-Free HTC One S Pre-Orders for Only $190, Also Includes a $25 Cash Card

Getting stoked to pick up the HTC One S from T-Mobile on April 25th? Well check this out! Costco is currently taking pre-orders for the device and is shooting to beat out T-Mobile’s price of $199.99 after rebate. Not only will you get to bypass the $50 mail-in, you will also save an extra 10 bucks and get a $25 Costco cash card to boot! Pretty sweet deal, huh? This is still going to beat out Best Buy’s retail price of $199.99, too. In order to snag the $25 cash card you are going to have to mail in a rebate form, but once she arrives at your door you could spend it on a slick accessory for your new One S! Hit up the source link below for more deets.

source: Costco
via: Droid Dog

LG Spectrum Getting Gingerbread 2.3.6 Thanks To Build VS920ZV5

Say what you will about Verizon’s LG Spectrum and whether you love it or hate it, it’s finally getting Gingerbread.  Build VS920ZV5 will be gracing the device and with it will come quite a few changes.  A few apps such as the NFL Mobile 4.0, Google Play Store, Amazon Kindle App and My Verizon will all receive tweaks for the better.  In addition, there will be a few bug fixes coming to address the calendar alerts, WiFi network search force closes and more to accompany the update.  No official release date has been given just yet but be patient.  We’re positive this won’t be a long wait at all.

source: Verizon