Tag Archives: smartphone

Toxicology ratings of smartphones – how toxic is your phone?

Here is a quality piece from iFixit that performs a chemical analysis on 36 smartphones. Which ones are the cleanest?

High technology feels so clean—no coal or steam or mess, just cool aluminum, sleek plastics, and polished glass. But that clean surface hides an interior that is far messier and more toxic…researchers took apart 36 phones and submitted their components to X-ray fluorescence spectrometry…then rated and ranked the phones on a scale of 0 – 5, lowest being best:

The post-PC era: smartphones and tablets use (much) less energy than laptop and desktop PCs

The smartphone revolution is spreading to every corner of the globe and, in 2011, an astounding 450 million smartphones were shipped. But what is the environmental cost of all these phones?

A piece from OPower looked into this and found some surprising facts. The first is that the iPhone 5 only uses $0.41/year of energy, and the second is a look at the post-PC era.

It turns out that smartphones and tablets are ultra-energy efficient compared to traditional consumer electronics – “A day spent web-surfing on a smartphone is a much more energy-efficient than doing the same on a traditional computer.”

 

 

Read the full article – Smartphones: smart for energy efficiency

Buy in bulk and save – AT&T and Verizon offer big savings through family plans

It finally happened, the telecom’s have given up their silly (and greedy) attempts to charge us through the roof for voice and text messages. All you have to do is switch over to their new family plans. It’s the new buy in bulk Costco business model.

A few weeks ago, Verizon released their Share Everything Plan, and now AT&T has answered back with the Mobile Share Plan (T-Mobile too).

Both marginalize making phone calls and sending text messages. Allowing you to send unlimited of both while switching the focus to data plans, where they have established tiers to charge you per gigabyte.

On a side note, it appears that both companies want to put the screws on individual plans. Most of which are still at $100/person while the family plan rate is $50-70/person. Even more so now that they removed the 5 device limit on the plans; now with a 10 device limit allowing even greater bulk savings.

One reason for this big family-push is possibly a strategy to prevent defections, after all it is much harder to move to another company when that also means leaving your family.

But does the new plan save any money?

For my family, no, unless we can pull in more family members.

 

The Breakdown

My family is on AT&T and currently has four out of six family members on one plan. The current cost for the four of us is $240.00/mo. We have one extra feature, unlimited messaging, for $30/mo. This ends up costing each of us $60/mo.

The break down:

Phone #1 (primary line)

  • Family Talk, 700 minutes – $60
  • Text messaging unlimited – $30
  • Unlimited data – $30
  • Total = $120

Phones #2, #3, #4

  • Family Talk, 700 minutes – $10
  • Unlimited data – $30
  • Total = $40 (x3)

 

Under AT&T’s new plan, our total cost would be – $260 and that breaks down to $65/mo per person.

  • 6GB – $90
  • Smartphone – $35 x 4 = $140
  • Unlimited talk/text – $30

 

Which means we won’t be making the change…unless we add another phone to our plan. With five phones our total cost would be $295 and that would cost $59/mo per person.

  • 6GB – $90
  • Smartphone – $35 x 5 = $175
  • Unlimited talk/text – $30

 

And, in case you’re wondering if we add that sixth line the cost person would go down to $55/mo.

Maybe it’s time to wrangle together the whole family under one plan.

 

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Smartphone owners love shopping with apps – use them on average 17x month

From the Nielsen Wire:

…Nearly half of American smartphone owners (47%) used shopping apps in June 2012, according to Nielsen.  Overall, 45 million smartphone owners used apps in the Shopping/Commerce category, accessing shopping apps 17 times on average during June 2012.

 

 

More analysis:

  • eBay, Amazon, and Groupon dominate with 60% of all uniques.
  • Shopkick somehow keeps users in the app for 3 hours.
  • TechCrunchNielsen On U.S. Mobile Shopping

Romney campaign release ‘Mitt’s VP’ smartphone app – instantaneous alerts for VP choice

Mitt Romney’s campaign announced Tuesday that supporters can sign up to be the first to learn of the presumptive Republican nominee’s vice presidential choice by downloading a new smartphone app.

“The first official way to learn the name of the Republican vice presidential candidate is by using our new ‘Mitt’s VP’ app,” said Romney digital director Zac Moffatt in a statement. “Users of the app will be the first to get the news on the biggest political decision of the year through an instantaneous alert on the one device most people carry around the clock — their phone.”

The app will push a notification to supporters’ phones instantly after the name is released from Romney headquarters, and allow users to share and comment on it across a variety of social networks. The application will be free on both the iPhone and Android operating systems.

The approach is the evolution of a 2008 move by the Obama campaign that sent a text message to supporters announcing the selection of now-Vice President Joe Biden.

 

Source: The Hill - Romney campaign to announce VP selection via smartphone app

 

 

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Ikea adds smartphone apps and augmented reality to its newest catalog

Ikea prints 211 million copies of its product catalog every year. That’s more than 20 times the population of Sweden, the home of the build-it-yourself furniture empire. These are impressive numbers for a print catalog in a digital world, but Ikea is now changing with the times with a head-first dive into augmented reality.

“A lot digital stuff becomes very interesting when you mash it up with the tangible items of the real world,” said Andreas Dahlqvist, Global Deputy Chief Creative Officer of McCann, the creative agency behind the catalog.

Augmented reality features will roll out in the 2013 edition of the print catalog, which will arrive in customers’ mailboxes later this month. Amid pictures of Expedit bookshelves and Boksel tables, Ikea fans will see special printed symbols, each an invite to launch new iPhone and Android smartphone apps for an augmented reality experience.

When you wave your smartphone over pages with digital content, a variety of features appear.

 

Source: Wired Gadget Lab - Ikea’s Augmented Reality Catalog Will Let You Peek Inside Furniture

 

 

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R&D spending by the big three in smartphones – Nokia, Google, Apple

A fascinating graphic and the article it is pulled from.

 

 

Nokia led the wireless revolution in the 1990s and set its sights on ushering the world into the era of smartphones. Now that the smartphone era has arrived, the company is racing to roll out competitive products as its stock price collapses and thousands of employees lose their jobs.

This year, Nokia ended a 14-year-run as the world’s largest maker of mobile phones, as rival Samsung Electronics Co. took the top spot and makers of cheaper phones ate into Nokia’s sales volumes.

Nokia is losing ground despite spending $40 billion on research and development over the past decade—nearly four times what Apple spent in the same period.

Instead of producing hit devices or software, the binge of spending has left the company with at least two abandoned operating systems and a pile of patents that analysts now say are worth around $6 billion, the bulk of the value of the entire company.

 

Source: Wall Street Journal - Nokia’s Bad Call on Smartphones

New stadium rules for NFL games – free wifi, unlimited noise, more instant replay

Professional football, America’s most popular and profitable sport, is preparing to tackle a glaring weakness: Stadiums are increasingly empty.

As part of sweeping changes designed to give teams more flexibility to fill their seats, the National Football League is watering down its controversial TV “blackout” rule. And this season, for the first time, fans in the stadium will be able to watch the same instant replays the referees see during reviews of controversial calls.

The league also is planning to introduce wireless Internet in every stadium and to create smartphone apps that could let fans listen to players wearing microphones on the field.

With declines in ticket sales each of the past five years, average game attendance is down 4.5% since 2007, while broadcast and online viewership is soaring.

In hopes that professional football can mimic the wild stadium atmosphere typical of college football games, the NFL says it has “liberalized” its restraints on crowd noise. Stadiums will now be free to rile up crowds with video displays, and public-address announcers will no longer be restrained from inciting racket when the opposing offense faces a crucial third down.

 

Read moreGame Changer: NFL Scrambles to Fill Seats

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Apple Adds Gay and Lesbian Couple Icons to iOS 6

The new version of Apple’s iPhone operating system comes with new emojis, the popular emoticons that are often used in texting and email, especially by young kids and nerdy adults like me. Two of these new pictograms represent gay and lesbian couples for the first time.

The icons are placed next to the previous relationship-related emojis showing a heterosexual couple holding hands and a heterosexual couple with a son. One shows two men holding hands. The other shows two women in the same position.

From Japan to the world

Emojis started in Japan. Meaning picture (e) and letter (moji), the pictograms quickly become a standard across this highly visually oriented culture. Apple introduced an emoji keyboard when it got the iPhone into the Japanese market, knowing that they were fundamental to compete there.

But then Westerners, fascinated by their cuteness, quickly adopted them too. Software appeared to enable that special Apple emoji keyboard in any iPhone or iPad. Every kid and nerdy adult with an Apple device quickly adopted them, and emojis spreaded like wildfire. Now you can find them everywhere.

via Gizmodo

 

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