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Our world becomes more and more dependent on computers and related technologies, which is why it is essential to be aware of any vital changes that occur. Here you can find news and reviews of the most important subjects.

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14
Dec

Adidas miCoach For WP8 Review

Written by Mike Roberts. Posted in Gadgets

(Windows Phone 8) with Adidas heart rate monitor review
Adidas miCoach with Adidas heart rate monitor for Windows Phone 8 was tested on a Nokia Lumia 620 at the time it was in beta. However, the heart rate monitor was ready to go. After a 6 km run with miCoach, we found out some interesting things about this device.

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Goals
Modern technology always comes up with new gadgets that are suitable for any type of person as well as for various tasks. If you like to be up to date with the latest gadgets, the best thing to do is check a tech news website on a regular basis. We are very fond of the http://www.hcmdigital.net, as it features a lot of great gadget reviews. Furthermore, this website does not feature just gadgets but also the latest apps. Adidas miCoach is but one of the many fitness apps that can help you achieve your goals. Adidas miCoach app works on Windows Phone 8, but the heart rate monitor only works on some smartphones, including Lumia 520, 620, and 720. Unlike other similar apps, the goal of the Adidas miCoach isn’t just to hit the road, as there is no Go button. This means that you can’t simply track and record your usual route, a feature that may come as a shock to some people expecting an easy start. Instead, the app aims to train you so you can be a faster runner or a thinner runner.

The app
In order to obtain the miCoach app, you must go to the Adidas miCoach website and register. There you will have the opportunity to test the water with some sample sessions. From the online account, you can enter relevant information about details, such as running shoes you are going to wear, and set up a training plan (you can’t do this with the app). Users can choose from dozens of plans that start with an assessment workout designed to calibrate the app. After you select a program, it will sync with the app.

System
The assessment run is 12 minutes long and the app asks you to walk and then run at maximum speed. The Adidas miCoach tracks your progress with GPS data and the strapped on heart monitor connected via Bluetooth Low Energy (exclusive to Nokia), so it knows your boundaries. Most of the training involves you running between certain thresholds. Users are given visual and audible feedback so they know when to speed up and slow down.

Features
Adidas miCoach has many unique features, including the Nokia Music integration that allows users to listen music and even choose the athlete voice pack. And who wouldn’t want Jess Ennis to praise their progress? All miCoach features are highly customizable on the WP8 than on other platforms. However, these clever features come at the cost of battery life, so tracking every step for 30 will be quite demanding for Lumia’s battery.

Pros

  • Support for Windows 8;
  • Audible and visual feedback;
  • Gives users purpose;
  • Success in its goals;
  • Useful if you are training for a big race;

Cons

  • Cluttered interface;
  • The heart rate monitor is compatible with only a few Nokia phones.
13
Dec

i-FlashDrive HD Review

Written by Mike Roberts. Posted in Computers

The i-FlashDrive is an external memory expansion for iPads, iPhones, and laptops that allows users to transfer data between the devices when they are low on storage. The drive has a 30-pin connector on one side and a USB 2.0 connector on the other side. It also comes with a Lightning adapter for latest iOS models. The device offers 4 storage configurations, 8 GB rated at $99, 16 GB with the Lightning tip for $150, 32GB with the Lightning tip for 200 and for $329 64GB, Lightning tip included.

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Design
The i-FlashDrive HD has a nice design with a white shiny plastic body, the staple of Apple accessories. The drive measures only 2 x 1 x 0.3 inches and weighs 0.6 ounces, so you can easily fit it in the palm of your hand. On one end the device has a removable Lightning dock connector that is compatible with iPad 3, 4 and iPhone 5. At the other end you can find a 2.0 USB plug compatible with PCs and Macs. The 9-pin connector comes off, revealing a 30-pin dock connector for older iOS devices. Even if the i-FlashDrive is small, when plugged into a Mac laptop it gets in the way of other ports. Moreover, when you plug it into an iPhone or iPad, its length could be a problem.

App
When you first use the PhotoFast i-Flash Drive you are automatically prompted to download the app or open it if you have already performed this step. The app is a user-friendly file viewer that allows you to access the drive, sync with Dropbox and back up your contacts. Too add files, you simply plug it in and use it as any other USB drive. Users can encrypt files in the app by pressing the padlock icon on the bottom right side of the screen and select the files to encrypt and their protective password. When you want to access them, just retype the password.

Features
The i-FlashDrive HD has some pretty neat features, including a voice recorder. The recorder is easy to use and you can rename the recordings anytime. However, the end of audio clips is cut off a little too quickly, so keep that in mind if you are planning to use this feature. When you backup contacts, the data is saved in small files located inside a backup folder so you can restore them if you lose your smartphone.

Performance
Even if the Flash Drive has a great app, its performance did not impress up, as it is slower than USB 3.0 devices. According to a LAPTOP File Transfer test, the device copied 5GB of multimedia files from a notebook in 18 minutes and 9 seconds at a rate of 4.7 MBps. Other flash drives, like the Patriot Supersonic can perform the same task in 2 minutes and 4 seconds. However, the PhotoFast i-Flash Drive did better when we copied files to the notebook, managing to complete the transfer in 5 minutes and 4 seconds.

We found the i-FlashDrive HD to be an indispensable gadgets in today’s society. However, if this device is out of your price range or it simply does not suit your needs, we invite you to check out http://www.paydiddy.com/. This is one of our favorite tech news websites and we always turn to it whenever we want to read about the latest gadgets and the most popular apps and software. It is important to be up to speed with these matters because interacting with technology is unavoidable so we might as well make the best of it. We may not like the fact that we are addicted to technology but the fact it that it comes with a lot of advantages. There are a lot of gadgets and apps that can help us save time and money while also avoiding a lot of stress. The i-FlashDrive is but one of the many such gadgets.

10
Dec

The Debut of Asus PadFone Mini

Written by Mike Roberts. Posted in Computers

Is it a tablet? Is it a phone? No, it’s the new Asus PadFone Mini, revealed at a special event in Taiwan. This is the latest device from Asus that combines the big-screen of a tablet with the convenience of a smartphone. The PadFone is not as large as the massive Xperia Z Ultra-style, so it is very portable.

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This time, the company decided to make the Padfone a more manageable size, shrinking it form 10.1-inches to 7-inches with a 1280×800 display and the smartphone from 5-inches to only 4.3-inches and a 960×540 display. The Asus PadFone Mini is powered by a 1.4GHz quad-core Snapdragon 400 processor with dual-SIM support, 1GB RAM and 1500mAh battery. There 16 GB storage can be supplemented with an additional 64 BG MicroSD card. The PadFone has two cameras, an 8-megapixel lens on the rear that can combine four sensor pixels into one and a 2-megapixel camera in the front.

As with the previous hardware, the tablet requires the phone to operate. Its built-in 2200mAh battery is more than enough to charge the phone while it’s docked. Along with the single data plan for both devices, this feature is a major benefit for the line. The PadFone Mini runs Android 3.4 and will be sold for $400. There are 3 color schemes available, white, black and cherry milk. Even if the specs are a step down from other models in the line, the Mini is also more affordable. This tablet will allow you to use your favorite mobile apps in a proper manner. You won’t have to search the internet in order to download subway surfers for pc free. This game and many others will run perfectly on this tablet. Furthermore, this tablet can also be used in other ways than games and if you keep up with the latest tech releases, this tablet will make your life a lot easier by allowing you to use various time management or project managing apps.

According to CEO Jerry Shen, the PadFone Mini will be released in China, Hong Kong, Russia, Indonesia and Singapore at undetermined dates. The lower price tag created an affordable option for customers who want a unique device that won’t leave a big hole in their budget. Currently, Asus has no plans for a launch in Europe or the US. Asus CEO Jerry Shen also stated that the time is right for bringing the PadFones to the US, although it is unclear if the devices will make it over.

Although it sounds like the tablet-docking device may soon be getting a launch in the US, the company has other plans. Asus is considering bringing a high-end PadFone product in partnership with a big US carrier. Unfortunately, Shen was discrete and did not offer any details about the carrier or the device. Some of the previous PadFones have been available on the US market through online importers and retailers. It is good to see that the PadFone’s availability is expanding, as we don’t see many unique smartphone designs there. Fans will certainly be excited to hear that the company intends to bring is creation to the US.

Generally, people who buy tablets due it due to the fact that they cannot replace their computers with smartphones and they need a comfortable way to use their favorite programs without being connected to various wires. Therefore, if you ever found yourself researching the internet for ways to download subway surfers for PC free or any other mobile game for that matter, you will no longer have to count on your PC in order to play this games or use various mobile apps.

06
Dec

Is Samsung S4 Catching Fire?

Written by Mike Roberts. Posted in Computers

Since its release this spring, approximately 20 million units of Samsung’s new phone have been sold. With so many users, it’s normal that some develop faults. However, the company’s extensive testing ensures that the device poses no threat. Recently, Richard Wygand (Ghostlyrich) reported that he woke up next to his device which had caught fire.

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Such incidents are few and occur when a charger or battery are bought on the black market and do not pass the manufacturer’s tests. Even Apple users reported problems with the devices. Apparently, a woman in China was electrocuted when using a third-party iPhone charger. Unlike Samsung, Apple did not choose to pursue means of silencing displeased customers, but instead offered to replace any third-party USB power adapter with an Apple adapter for only $10. The company stated stat customer safety is a top priority and that is why they are offering a takeback program.

Samsung adopted another strategy and moved to suppress YouTube evidence that the Samsung S4 can catch fire. Richard Wygand posted two videos on YouTube that received thousands of views. In the videos, Wygand states that Samsung demanded proof that the new S4 was defective before they replace it, but they didn’t expect him to share the evidence with the world. In the video, he shows a few close-ups of the melted charging port and expresses his concern about the battery that is very close to the charred area. If the battery bad exploded, a much worse fire could have resulted.

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After posting the video, Richard Wygand received a settlement proposal from the company and the promise of a new phone. However, there were several conditions. Wygand claims that the Samsung asked him to delete the video and not to upload any similar materials, thus waiving his right to bring a legal complaint. But they never anticipated that Ghostlyrich would post a second video, showing his subscribers the action taken to hide a safety concern. The second video has almost half a million views, viewers who now know that Samsung won’t provide the services enumerated in the warranty certificate unless you sign some more documents.

Lately, more stories about Samsung S4 phones catching fires have emerged. Another Samsung Galaxy S4 owner has reported on Reddit that his 9 month old S4 caught fire after he left it in the charger and that it was covered in some we substance caused by the leaking battery. Another S4 owner, Manolo Rodriguez claims that his S4 started burning in his pocket and then exploded, causing burns on his lips, fingers and chest. Rodriguez filed a lawsuit against Samsung, hoping that something will change. He told that the company needs to recall the S4 for further testing to discover what is causing this problem.

04
Dec

Hyperloop Dream May Become a Reality

Written by Mike Roberts. Posted in Computers

Elon Musk’s Hyperloop concept might become a reality in 2015. A prototype is planned to be released in as little as 18 months, but some are skeptical about this project. A new company, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies Inc emerged from the shadows, led by Marco Villa from SpaceX and executive Patricia Galloway. The company is seeking funding on JumpStartFund, where it published the timeline for the Hyperloop prototype.

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Hyperloop is a project you’d expect from an “Iron Man” comic that sounds too good to be true. The former director of mission operations at SpaceX joined the team who will transform Hyperloop into reality. Since August, a handful of talented individuals led by him received permission from Musk to start working on the project. Patricia Galloway is joining Villa on the mission to transform the high-speed travel train into reality. Even if the rail line will take longer, Villa stated that he is optimistic regarding any technical issues and that the team will solve any problem that comes along.

Entrepreneur Elon Musk believes the Hyperloop will be able to transport passengers from Los Angeles to San Francisco in only 35 minutes due to its giant vacuum tubes and air-bearing suspension system. The project is divided into four sections, named System, Capsule, Tube and Manufacturing and testing. The subsonic air travel machine will provide a shorter travelling time than commercial airplanes. If the technology can be developed at the costs Musk estimated, $6 billion, it will make travel cheaper than with any other mode of transportation.

The Hyperloop system is designed to use a partial vacuum that reduces aerodynamic drag and allows high speed travel on low power. Musk wants the machine to rely only on solar energy. The Hyperloop transportation system will be twice as fast as the fastest train in the world, zipping at almost 700 mph. The  Maglev Train in Shangai has a top speed of 311 mph and an operating speed of 268 mph, making the same trip in one hour and 20 minutes. However, Musk believes that bullet trains are too expensive. Innovations like these can completely change our lives and the way the world moves, so even if they won’t occur too soon, it’s good to know about them and be mentally prepared. More on systems like the Hyperloop you can find on websites like http://www.ageofinnovation.org, which also bring you reviews for gadgets, apps and other mobile news.

Even if Hyperloop transportation could be another nail in the coffin of rural America, many are thrilled by the prospect of a Jetsonian transportation machine. However, the timeline set for the development of a prototype is short, and either the Hyperloop will be limited or the person who established this timeline is wrong. Let’s hope that Villa and Galloway already have millions in funding and some handshake agreements to build the prototype at rare facilities that can accommodate such vehicle.