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Monday, September 23, 2013

Why Laptop Computers Are Steadily Replacing Desktop Systems


The need for students, home users and business professionals to work remotely is growing therefore laptops are becoming increasingly common to fill this need. Laptops are useful computing and entertainment machines because they are powerful and portable. Many homes and offices are equipped with wireless and networking capabilities enabling a laptop computer to be used in the facility for gaming, entertainment, work, and watching television. The growing computer and technology industry has been able to make smaller and more powerful laptops therefore the difference in performance between desktop computers and laptops is steadily becoming narrower. The need for people in society to work remotely, on location and to use their computing device in different places creates a need for the mobility that laptop computers provide. They are a good tech solution for people who travel and need to bring their computers with them to perform work.
Laptops are smaller in size and much lighter than desktop systems. Their frames and internal components are much smaller than their desktop counterparts. Many of them are equipped with LCD screens that come in a range of sizes to provide consumers with options. Some consumers may prefer a laptop with a 14 inch screen and others may prefer a full sized 17 inch screen for a wider display area. Thickness is another factor that differentiates laptop computers and desktop systems. Today laptops can come in very thin sizes. Apple MacBook laptops tend to be some of the thinnest that are available in the market. Many people value laptops because of their compact size, their significantly lighter weight, and their portability as compared to desktop computers. Laptop computers tend to range between five and seven pounds although some models can weight much less.

Users may need to sacrifice durability but the hardware and capabilities of laptop computers is advancing and becoming more powerful. There was a time in history when the performance of a desktop computer was unparalleled but that gap has significantly narrowed over the years. Laptop computers come with hard drives and storage capacities that can be in the terabytes and powerful processors including quad cores. There are also high end gaming laptops available in the market such as the Alienware M14x R2 AM14XR2-6111BK 14.0-Inch system or the MSI Computer Corp GT70 17.3 inch system. In the computer industry laptops have become more than simple word processing and computing devices. Laptops have become powerful multimedia, entertainment, and gaming systems.

The biggest benefits for students, home users and business professionals that use laptop computers are mobility and networking. It is becoming increasingly important for people to have their personal computer or computing device with them in locations other than the classroom, home or office. Desktop computers are too heavy and large to carry around to different locations and generally anchor their users to a single work location. There have been advancements in cloud computing, networking and remote data access but a computing device is still required to perform the work.

Laptops fill the growing need for students, home users and business professionals to work and use their computers remotely. Desktop computers are not portable and mobile whereas laptops can be easily carried to different locations. Laptop computers will continue to become equipped with better hardware and capabilities as technology advances to close any existing gap in performance with desktop computers.
Writing about technology and computers is a passion of mine because gadgets and devices assist people in their daily lives. I write to share my knowledge in technology with others because I believe we all grow together. I particularly enjoy writing reviews for technology products including computers and laptops because they are a common tech gadget in homes and businesses that people use daily to work and connect with others.
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Monday, June 10, 2013

Laptops Versus Tablets - Which Is Best For Business


Is your organisation thinking of implementing tablets and/or SmartPhones as part of your mobile strategy? Have you recently rolled-out a tablet or, specifically, the Apple iPad to your employees? Well, it appears that you are definitely not alone. A recent survey by Context reports that 63% of tablets sold in the UK are being bought for business use. And, if we follow the path of the US, 75% of businesses will have deployed tablets during 2013.

I've worked with many organisations over the last two years, assisting in adapting and modifying business processes in line with the use of tablets. The iPad is by far the most prolific player in the business tablet game and is used across small organisations through to Global 500 Enterprises, including family run farms and wineries to schools, medical centres and busy A&E departments. Recently, United Airlines reported the introduction of the iPad as standard equipment on their flight decks. As one of the world's leading airlines with the most comprehensive global route network, pilots are provided with one-touch access to charts, maps and other crucial navigation tools.

But, a common debate is whether tablets will replace laptops within business. Well, it's unlikely as a tablet is a tablet, and a laptop is a laptop - they both do different things and one does not claim to be the same as the other. But, with most tablets no longer just a media device, but able to create and share information, remotely connect to organisational networks and allow communication across the world through virtual meetings, it's no wonder that they're becoming an important addition for innovative companies worldwide.
Clients I've worked with have shared the following reasons for why they've chosen to implement these devices:
  • It's not much fun carrying around a heavy laptop and power cable on the train, to meetings or through airports. Tablets are generally thin and lightweight, easily slipped into a bag or held in the hand.
  • What better way to deliver a sales pitch, whether to a large audience (by connecting to a monitor) or by passing the tablet around a small group?
  • With several hours of power, there's no need to go looking for a spare electric socket during meetings, and trailing cables across the floor. You can just switch it on and it's ready to use in seconds, wherever you are.
  • When you sit in a meeting and pull a slick looking tablet out of your briefcase, no one seems to mind whereas a laptop can appear intrusive and unwelcome.
  • A range of business apps (some of which are built in and ready to use) are easily distributed to employees. And, with the option of a connecting a hardware keyboard, typing and entering data is no different to doing so on a laptop.
  • The front facing camera* is great for virtual meetings, particularly as the tablet can be passed around a meeting room or handed to a client. (*not applicable to all tablets)
So, tablets are definitely set to stay, both for personal and business use - the total annual shipments of tablets worldwide are set to exceed 120 million in 2015 (ABI Research). The impact of this on the business world is that over a third of all companies are planning to stop providing mobile devices to workers by 2016, instead requiring their workers to bring in their own devices (known as BYOD - bring your own device). I haven't come across many organisations that ask their employees to bring in their own personal laptops! Have you?
TrainingU offer customised ipad training, total flexibility and will fit in with your requirements - delivering training at a time and place that suits you. We can train in-house at your offices, another location or your staff can simply attend one of our regular open scheduled courses. All of our training can be tailored to meet the exact requirements of your business.

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Monday, June 3, 2013

Selecting an iPad App Development Company


Making a selection of an iPad application development company is crucial. It can have a big impact on the outcome of the app. To make sure that you have a positive outcome of the iPad app, here are few things that might help you make a selection of an iPad application development company.

First, find out about their experience with apps development for iPad. The Apple's iOS operating system is difficult to work with, and the odd screen size of the iPad can make apps development difficult. This is the reason why, the first thing you need to do is find out a company that has considerable experience developing apps for iPad.

The next thing to do is check whether they are capable to develop apps that match your business segment. For instance, it would be illogical for a financial institution to get their app created by a company that is specialized in developing games. That's why, approach a company that specializes developing apps specific to your business type. The portfolio of the company could be helpful to determine whether they specialize, creating app related to your business or not.

It would also be helpful to find out how user-friendly apps they are able to develop are. It is, obviously, crucial for an app to be easy to use, even for the first time users. This is rather what Apple's devices are all about; ease of use. Browse through the company's portfolio and look for the signs, whether their iPad apps are easy to use or not. A great app is something that is easy to use, functional, and versatile along with beautiful graphics that are attractive and easy to view.

Find a company that believes in newness. Again, portfolio could help you in this regard. Check the apps and look for the newness such as the themes, colors, logos, functions, concept, and so on. It would be a worthwhile asking a company for a demo app, and see what innovative solution they come up with.
Timely delivery is also another aspect to consider while choosing an iPad app development company. When you ask for the price quote, be sure to get an estimated time frame, which will help you know how quickly the company can deliver your app. Refer their clients' testimonials and see what they have to say about the company's timely delivery.

In order to have a great iPad app, it is crucial to hire the services of the right iPad app developers for the task. Considering the above things could certainly help you make a selection of the right developers for your custom iPad app.

iPad app development company based in Australia provides mobile application development services for iPhone, iPad, Android & blackberry. For more information visit to us:
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Friday, May 24, 2013

Can Seniors Find the iPad Useful?


My dad was given an iPad by my sister when he visited her in Chicago last month. Since then he has not touched his desktop or his new laptop at home. He totes the iPad wherever he goes and has been using it at work. When you ask him why he prefers the iPad he would tell you it's the greatest gadget he has ever had. Below are some reasons why my father loves his iPad:
  • It's a good device for reading the newspaper
  • It's a good device to play his favorite games
  • It's a good device to surf the internet
  • It's a good device because it is very portable
My father's day is never complete without reading the newspaper and listening to his favorite news programs on TV. Now that he has an iPad, not only does he read the local dailies, but he has also subscribed to national newspapers like the New York Times. He loves his Reuters app that allows him to read news from all over the world.

If you are like my Dad who reads the news all the time, you can subscribe to your favorite newspapers and read what's in the news on your iPad. Getting newspapers from the App Store is easy for anyone, my dad was able to do it! All it takes is to go to the App Store by clicking the App Store icon on your Home screen. There are two things you can do once you are inside the App Store:
1) You can type the name of the newspaper you are looking for in the search field and it will be pulled up automatically.
2) You can tap on the "All Categories" button on top of the screen and choose "News" in the drop down menu where you will be taken to a page that has two columns. The first column features icons of paid news apps and the second column features the icons of free news apps. The paid apps include such newspapers as the New York Daily News that costs $1.99 to download as well as news programs like the popular show on CBS, "60 Minutes" that costs $4.99 to download. On the other hand, the free apps include an app for CNN, the NY Times, and The Wall Street Journal.
Be mindful that aside from the fee you pay in downloading the app on your iPad, access to the content of the newspaper you choose is not free of charge. You still need to pay the subscription fee for the newspapers that you want delivered on your iPad. For instance, even if you already paid $1.99 for the "New York Daily News" app, you still need to pay $13.99 for a 6-month auto renewing subscription or $23.99 for an annual auto renewing subscription. For the "NY Times," you only have limited access to its content unless you get a digital subscription which could cost around $5.00 to $8.75 a week depending on the access option you want. Most of the news programs that you can download on your iPad however, such as CBS' "60 Minutes" and CNN can be accessed for free once you download the app from the App Store.

I also noticed that dad has some games on his iPad when I borrowed it the other week and I know he downloaded them himself because he used to always ask me to do it for him. I think my Dad especially loves his iPad now because he does not have to bring crossword puzzles cut out from newspapers and magazines and a pencil while waiting for my Mom to finish shopping at the mall or while waiting at the doctor's office. If he gets tired doing the crossword, he can easily switch to being a contestant in "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?" his favorite game show on TV. He even volunteers to babysit my daughters now because he can entertain them with kiddie games such as "Cars: Numbers and Counting," "Make Up Salon," and "Toddler's Seek and Find."

If you are also into crossword puzzles like my Dad, you can download crossword puzzle apps like the "NYTimes Crosswords" for free on your iPad. All you need to do is go to the App Store. Once in the App Store, type the word "crossword" on the search field and you will be taken to a page with crossword app suggestions. Tap the icon of the crossword you want to download and then tap the "Free" for free apps or the button that displays the price of the app for paid apps. When the button turns green, tap the button again and wait for the app to load completely. You can also look for games from the "All Categories" button and the dropdown menu that comes out when you tap on it.

Just like when you uploaded the news apps, some games can be played for free while others can only be played after you pay a certain amount. For instance, the "NYTimes Crosswords" gives you a week of free crosswords only. After the one-week, free trial period you can only play with their classic crossword puzzles. If you are a crossword puzzle pro like my Dad, you might not be content with the classic puzzle. If you want to play the puzzle printed on today's paper, then you will have to subscribe to get access. The fees are: $16.99 for a yearly subscription, $9.99 for a six-month subscription or $2.99 for a monthly subscription. Of course these fees may change at any time.

So, can seniors find the iPad useful? Oh yes, it definitely is for seniors and my Dad is a living testament that iPads can be used by people of all ages.
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Tuesday, May 14, 2013

How to start your car from your phone?

In this article I will show you how to start your car from your cell phone. I already had a car starter installed in my truck years ago but the range was terrible and you had to press the button for a precise amount of time, otherwise it would just ignore it. So instead of pressing a button all day long from 10 feet away I decided I wanted to start my truck from anywhere in the world! I built this a few years ago, and some newer products have come out that integrate cell phones with vehicles, but this still works for older vehicles, and can also be adapted to many other kinds of appliances as well.
This isn't just limited to vehicles. Many DIY types have attached these to their cabin's furnace, aircraft pre-heaters, irrigation pumps on farms, servers, routers, and all sorts of other appliances and electronics.
Parts required:
-GSM activated relay. This device will contain a SIM chip that can connect to the GSM cell phone network. It's relays must be able to be activated by phone call or text message. In my first build I used a GSM-AUTO, but found a cheaper alternative on eBay for the Quad Band version (North America) or the Dual Band (Europe, Asia, etc.). it costs around $150 which has 7 relays. Another alternative is to purchase from the online store called Relay Supply. One relay is controlled by phone call and the rest are activated by text message. The relays can be set as either momentary or latched.
-Car Starter Key Fob (the remote control thing on your keychain).
-12V DC cigarette power cord
-Small plastic bag or ESD bag.
-A few wires.
-A few screw drivers
-Soldering Iron
Step 1:
Begin with canabalizing the key fob. Instead of consuming one of my existing remotes, I turned to eBay. I found the model number of mine on the back. Its an Auto Start 05-A433. I entered this in on eBay and up popped a bunch of used key fobs that are compatible with my system. WARNING: Some of these remotes may look exactly like the one you want but they come in many revisions. Some revisions are not compatible with others. If you are not sure which to buy on eBay, try buying one new online.
You will have to sync your remote with your car starter. As all car starters and car starter installations are different, I won't go into detail on how to do this. Whoever installed your car starter can usually do it for a fee but I strongly recommend you Google for the models manual as its a rather simple process. It usually involves either depressing the hood pin in a particular fashion (a pin that detects if your hood is popped), or pressing a button on the side of the remote starters brain under your dash.
Now remove any screws from the case and pry it apart. The circuit inside and battery are not secured in any way and came out easily.
Step 2:
Find the button that corresponds to the "start" button on your remote. Some remotes can require a combination of buttons to be pressed in a certain order, or multiple buttons pressed at the same time. This can be accomplished by soldering up two connections that are both wired through the relay (for multiple button presses) or a capacitor can be added to time delay one of buttons.
The contact in the center of this picture is already powered. When a user pushes the button, the connection is made between the interlocking contacts (they look like interlocking letter E's) and the starter signal is sent. We will be soldering one wire to each corner of the contact. This takes a great deal of precision to ensure that you do not join the two contacts.
Step 3:
Next, solder a wire onto each connector that supplies power to the remote. Color coding the wires is a good idea. This remote takes a small but powerful 12V battery. Note that if your remote can not handle this high of voltage (some cigarette lighters can pump out around 15V so be sure that the remote can handle this), you will have to continue using the existing battery.
Step 4:
The GSM Relay has 7 relays. The first is controlled by phone call. When called, the relay will open for a set amount of time that can be programmed into the device by text message. Mine is set for 1200 milliseconds.
I would recommend wiring the power cables into the device first. Take the 12V DC cigarette power cord and strip the ends of the cables and slide the cable through one of the ports on the side of the device. These ports can be tightened to ensure the device is weather proof. I fed the wire through the port closest to the power connector, but if your wires are higher gauge this can be difficult. Consider running the wire through the far port. The remote key fob will remain inside the device and its wires will not be run through on of the ports.
GND (ground) is clearly marked as the top most connector. Wrap the negative (black) wire from your remote key fob around the negative cigarette power connector wire and feed it into the GND connector. Screw it down tightly to ensure a solid connection.
Wrap the positive (red) wire from your remote key fob around the positive cigarette power connector wire and insert it into the +12V connector on the GSM device. Screw it down tightly and test both wires for looseness.
Step 5:
Next, run the wires from our "start" button into the relay controlled by phone calls. Each relay is simply a pair, with the first relay being controlled by phone call, and the rest being controlled by text message. Push the wires into each connector and screw them down tightly. Remember, the remote will reside within the GSM devices case, so do not run the wire through one of the case ports.
Once this is done, consider sliding a small plastic bag or ESD bag over the remote key fob to prevent any shorts.
Step 6:
Slide back the metal bracket covering the SIM chip holder to allow it to pop up. Insert the SIM chip as shown and press it down again, securing the metal bracket to hold it down.
The GSM device has 3 LED's on it:
-One for network connectivity. This LED won't turn on for the first 10 seconds, and then will blink quite fast when the device initializes. The rapid blinking means its searching for a network to connect to. Once it establishes a connection (this will only occur if the SIM chip is a valid one and the device is in GSM range), the light will blink much slower, indicating that the connection has been made.
-One for indicating power status (blinks regularly to indicate it is powered).
-One for indicating TX or RX. Whenever the device receives or sends a text message/phone call, this light will flash.
Connect the device to your vehicles cigarette lighter! The power LED should be flashing, as should the network LED. Once the device achieves network connectivity, the flashing of the network LED should slow down.
Step 7:
Programming the device is simple. I have attached a PDF to this Instructable containing the instructions. To quickly add a phone number to the list of valid phone numbers that can call the device (also called a white list), send the following text message to the device:
PWD is the password (which can be changed), and WHL01 is the first position in the white list. If you wanted to add a second number you would use WHL02, etc. and so forth.
The phone number to be entered should contain the area code and regular phone number with no dashes. Occasionally the international country code must be prepended to the start of the number, but try without this first.
Call the device and the first relay should loudly clack open and closed for 300 milliseconds (default length of time). The device will never pick up the phone call; rather it merely checks whether that phone number is in its white list, and then either ignores it or acknowledges it. It usually activates itself on the second ring and causes you to hear two rings to occur quickly one after another when it activates.
To update the length of time to one second, use this command:
Figure out how long you normally have to press the start button for to start your vehicle and then program the relay to open for the proper amount of time.
Step 8:
Time to test our device out. Call the device and watch as the TX/RX LED activates. The relay should loudly flip open, and if you have a small LED on your key fob like mine, you should see this glowing as the "start" button is pressed by our relay. If the timing is correct and the key fob is pressed, your vehicle should start!
The parts I used can be obtained from Rellay Supply. The direct link for the 7 switch device: GSM Remote Control Relay.
If you have any other ideas for projects let me know. I'd love to collaborate or try out new projects!
I found some really useful devices at Relay Supply but there are lots of other sites out there, and eBay has many items like this as well. Google is your friend! Find what works best for you.
Another type of device that can be useful are devices that don't use bare contacts, but instead have mains plugs can also be found on Relay Supply. All units are Quad Band, and are either GSM based, or Wifi based, with multiple options for AC or DC power inputs.

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Friday, May 3, 2013

Customize User Interface of Android Device


Right out of the box, the newer versions of Android have fancy ways to jazz up the background of your home desktop, with the launch of live wallpapers for example, which allow screen interactions and a much more visual way of improving the appearance of your home screen - at a slight cost of battery life.

The Play Store is your main source for downloading third-party software, which can be used to customize the phone. However, there are normally plenty of ways, you can improve the look of your phone without even needing these apps.

Adding items on your home screen is the first step and can be easily done by selecting an icon and pushing down on it. Now you can either reposition the later or dump it in the trash bin (it does not remove the program, just the home screen icon). Finally, pushing and holding down on an empty screen lets you add shortcuts, folders or widgets. The last of these can improve the functionality of your phone immensely, such as displaying weather widgets, status updates or calendar entries.
Heading into the Settings menu provides a few more options you can change. For example, you can adjust your ringtones, vibration feedback (if present), how long your phone's backlight stays on before dimming and locking the screen. Or you can enable alternative keyboards, so if you don't get on with the default Android version, you can download a couple of freebies from the Play store (eg. iPhone keyboard) and enable these instead. Some custom keyboards can even have different skins.
In terms of a performance boost, we recommend Spare Parts (search for it on Play store). Despite reportedly being a root-only app, it seems to work fine on non-hacked phones and it's really handy for adding additional features, such as auto-rotation transition effects, haptic feedback or viewing detailed battery status reports.

Don't Like it? Change it.

Another way to customize your phone is to replace your default software. For example, you could get hold of Documents To Go for editing Microsoft Office documents or download Dolphin Browser, which is a great replacement to the default browser. For a start, the browser feels faster in operation and has gesture control as well, so you can draw on the screen to perform certain actions, such as adding bookmarks.

Of course, you may be sick of your default home theme or the way the icons/widgets look. Here you can head to the Google Play store and download a variety of third-party apps to customize your Android further.
Read more useful android tips on Everything Android which focuses on apps, tutorials and useful stuff for your Android device.
Checkout Everything Android today at
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Sunday, April 28, 2013

Explosion of Mobile Traffic In 2012


According to latest data published by Cisco, mobile traffic has grown by an unprecedented 70% in the year 2012. This is, however, in lieu with what had been anticipated. Considering the phenomenal growth in sales of mobile devices, especially Android and Apple smartphones along with tablets, the northward surge of mobile searches is set to increase even further on a yearly basis for at least the next five years.

2012 saw an interesting trend emerging in mobile traffic. Mobile video streaming apps accounted for the largest growth in traffic. The entire spectrum of mobile traffic is now dominated by video which accounts for a majority of mobile traffic, information accounts for 12%, social networks have a solid 7% and general web browsing has a 6% share. Music streaming and other audio related traffic accounts for 4%. It is not really a surprise that video streaming apps and video sharing platforms account for the largest share of the pie because they have been the most intriguing aspect of mobile internet over the past three years but the rate of growth is worth noting.

Among the video streaming apps that have witnessed a huge rise in their popularity are not the already dominant video sharing sites but apps like Netflix and others that offer mobile friendly interfaces and a lot of free content to complement the premium content that can be subscribed to.
The growth in mobile traffic can be attributed to many factors. The first of those contributing elements is the larger market share of Android smartphones and Apple iPhones along with more tablets being out there from various companies. The mobile traffic amongst smartphone users has increased by a gigantic 80% in 2012. The second factor that has contributed to this sensational growth in mobile traffic is faster and better internet speeds. Internet connections for mobile devices have never been better and with faster speeds, users are now engaging in browsing web content, searching for anything and watching videos, images and social networking only from mobile devices. The third factor is the quality of web experience. With better displays and faster processing power of smartphones and tablets, it is inevitable that mobile traffic would surpass all other kinds of traffic in the near future.

2013 will witness a similar surge in the number of mobile devices being sold and as people also start to use Wi-Fi, land-based internet networks along with mobile internet offered by service providers, the growth trend would continue to rise further to unprecedented heights.
Want more information on the benefits of mobile apps and mobile websites? If you're ready to add a mobile-based strategy to your business goals, contact us today to get started.
For more information, please call us at: 1-800-939-3998 or visit our website at:
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