Posts Tagged ‘phones’
Nokia took to its blog today to introduce Xpress Now, an enhanced version of its Xpress browser. Made for Asha devices, the web app delivers personalized content suggestions based both on your personal preferences and those of the browser’s “more than 80 million monthly users.” These new recommendations come courtesy of three separate browsers views: What’s Hot, You May Also like and Most Liked. The categories are largely self-explanatory, and we imagine suggested content will be more spot-on after the app has been around for a few months. For the time being, though, Nokia Xpress Now is in beta in India, and it should make its away to other countries later in 2013.
Source: Conversations by Nokia
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Nintendo is trying to get people to buy the new Wii U, but it just isn’t working, according to recent sales numbers. Now, the Japanese gaming giant is hoping that helping developers port their smartphone content to the home gaming console with conversion software will help entice buyers, according to the Japan Times.
Smartphone apps on a home console isn’t a novel idea: Sony began encouraging devs to bring their mobile phone hits to the PlayStation network a while ago, and continues to add mobile-first titles to the ranks of the Vita’s portable library. But there’s nothing really indicating that’s making a major difference in terms of attracting customers. After all, why would people seek out those titles on consoles, portable or otherwise, when they’ve already got myriad devices to play them on natively, including the iPhone, Android smartphones and the iPad?
Nintendo looking for ports of smartphone titles is a quick and dirty way to build out a larger software library, and for developers, a way to at least explore a new delivery vector to reach customers they may not already be reaching. But it will probably be a limited audience, made more so by the fact that anyone who’s already a fan of the title on mobile would probably be disinclined to pay for it all over again.
Porting is also a strategy that hasn’t really seemed to have been successful for anyone so far. BlackBerry has encouraged developers to port their Android apps over to BB10 using its own super-simple tool, which by all accounts takes only a few minutes to do its magic. But even still, it’s finding it hard to get developers on board, and that’s going from one mobile platform to another. Incentivizing conversions for mobile devs to bring their titles to a home console will likely be tricker still.
It’s been brought up before, but it bears repeating: Nintendo would probably stand to gain a lot more by reversing the situation, and porting its own blockbuster titles to other platforms, the way that Sony has flirted with doing, and the way that other publishers like Square Enix and Capcom have fully embraced. Admittedly, neither of those are hardware makers like Nintendo, but arguably that makes things more imperative for the Mario creator, which is having a really rough go of its hardware efforts, with lots of money sunk into a brand new console just at the beginning of what has been a 10-year release cycle in the past.
I wouldn’t mind having something like Dots on my Wii U, if I had or cared about one, but it’s not going to convince me to go buy that console. On the other hand, I’d love Super Mario World on the iPhone (a legit version, not via emulator) and would pay dearly for the pleasure. You’ve got the funnel all wrong, Nintendo, and it isn’t going to bring the people back.
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KALQ Is A New Split-Screen Keyboard Layout Designed To Speed Up Thumb Typing On Tablets & Big Phones
After the success of gesture-based keyboards such as Swype, the next obvious disruption to keyboard technology is optimisation of the legacy Qwerty layout that’s persisted since the typewriter era. Not that people haven’t tried alternatives to Qwerty already (e.g. Dvorak et al.) – and generally failed to make them stick. But that’s not stopping a group of academic researchers — including the co-inventor of the gesture IP behind Swype — from devising a new touchscreen keyboard layout in the hope that people can finally be persuaded to shift their typing habits.
KALQ, which is named, like Qwerty, after a string of its keys, is designed to speed up thumb typing on tablets and phablets (aka big phones). Its creators, who are from the University of St Andrews, the Max Planck Institute for Informatics and Montana Tech, claim that once users have accustomed themselves to the non-Qwerty layout — with about eight hours practice required to be as fast as Qwerty and 13-19 hours to surpass your Qwerty typing speed — typing performance can be about a third (34 percent) more efficient than thumb typing on split-screen Qwerty layouts.
They are planning to release KALQ as a free Android app for tablets and phablets, which will also work on smaller screen smartphones but stress their research and performance claims relate specifically to larger devices, rather than phones. They are also not directly comparing the performance of the new layout against any of the gesture keyboard input methods (Swype, SwiftKey’s Flow etc) — their performance data is based on a direct comparison with thumb typing on a split Qwerty.
Dr Per Ola Kristensson, Lecturer in Human Computer Interaction in the School of Computer Science at the University of St Andrews, who is one of the academics involved in the research, told TechCrunch they tested KALQ on a Galaxy Tab 7.7, adding that while the keyboard may also offer speed improvements on smartphones it’s not a claim they have tested. Kristensson is no stranger to keyboard disruption, being the man who wrote the pattern recognition algorithm underlying Swype, and co-founder of ShapeWriter, the startup that commercialised the gesture keyboard system in 2007 — before being acquired by Nuance in 2010 (the company that now owns Swype).
Kristensson said the KALQ researchers used a subset of publicly available emails from the Enron trial that were tagged ‘Sent from my BlackBerry’ as their data pool, analysing the mobile users’ use of language to figure out the best positions for the keys. As well as using computational optimisation techniques and looking at how devices behave when users are touch typing, they also modelled thumb movements with the aim of making a fast yet comfortable keyboard. KALQ is an English-language optimised letter layout, but the process that came up with its layout is “general,” said Kristensson: “You can feed it whatever language you want. So the layout may change, depending on your country.”
There’s been lots of crazy text input technologies proposed… The problem with a lot of them is they are not fast enough.
For English speakers, KALQ’s split-screen layout repositions the alphabet into two unequal blocks of letters, with consonants in the left block (plus Y which can be classed as either) and vowels plus the remaining consonants (including K, L and Q) in the right. A space key is included towards the edge of each block for easy reach with either thumb. The letter order is specifically designed to minimise typing long sentences with just one thumb — which is cumbersome and slows touchscreen typists down — and also places frequently used letter keys centrally close to each other to minimise thumb movements. In addition, the layout generally aims to encourage typing on alternating sides of the keyboard — which Kristensson said is a more ergonomic and comfortable way to type.
As well as learning the new letter layout, KALQ typists need to learn to move both thumbs at once to get the fastest speeds. “Experienced typists move their thumbs simultaneously: while one thumb is selecting a particular key, the other thumb is approaching its next target. From these insights we derived a predictive behavioural model we could use to optimise the keyboard,” noted Dr Antti Oulasvirta, Senior Researcher at the Max Planck Institute, in a statement.
The researchers said trained KALQ users were able to reach speeds of 37 words per minute — which they said is the highest ever reported entry rate for two-thumb typing on touchscreen devices, and “significantly higher” than the approximately 20 words per minute entry rate users can normally reach on a regular split Qwerty layout. The group will be presenting its research next month at the ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems in Paris. The Android KALQ app will be available for download in due course.
Persuading users to adopt a new keyboard layout is likely to be a tough ask but Kristensson said the problem with most of the Qwerty layout challengers to-date has been that they are not disruptive enough — in terms of the performance bump they offer users who have to go through the pain of learning how to type quickly again.
“If you want to get people to change their layout you basically have to get people to invest, you have to get them to give up the assigned cost, their previous investment in Qwerty typing. And then we have to invest new time in learning KALQ,” he said. “There’s been lots of crazy text input technologies proposed. Actually hundreds of them. Most of them have failed. I would say probably 99% of them have filed but the problem with a lot of them is actually they are not fast enough so why would people reinvest in learning a new text entry method if it doesn’t provide a substantial performance advantage so I think [KALQ] is one of the few keyboards that can provide that. So I’m hopeful.”
Asked whether the group might look to commercialise the research, he said the priority is to try to encourage people to adjust their typing behaviour and accept a Qwerty alternative but added that the group may look to monetise their algorithms in other ways — by, for example, using them to optimise other menu-based user interfaces.
“What I’m hoping here is that we will have impact,” he told TechCrunch. “I wanted to get people away from thinking about the Qwerty keyboard. And I think impact here may mean that we will release [KALQ] for free — but remember we are the ones who have all the algorithms to come up with optimal keyboards so we learn a lot about how to optimise user interfaces in general. My co-investigator, Antti Oulasvirta, he’s completely passionate about optimising any sort of user interface. So the process we use here can also be used to optimise other user interfaces like menu structures for example so there is lots of potential for the underlying technology. This is just one instantiation of that. But I think trying to sell a new keyboard — that’s a risky proposition. I’m not sure a venture capitalist would go for it.”
As promised, Geeksphone is offering both of its Firefox OS smartphones starting today. While the Firefox orange-tinged Keon will set you back $ 119, the slightly more upmarket Peak is priced at $ 194 — check out both of them in action after the break. The online retailer is willing to send both developer devices to anywhere in the world, so if you’re looking to be part of the next billion smartphone users, place your order at the source.
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The imagine a stock Android phone that isn’t really too big to use with one hand was virtually realized by the HTC First, but we could see some various other options on the marketplace in the near future, also. According to a report from COMPUTER Mag, Motorola is working on new smartphones that will run ‘stock’ Android and will be smaller than the giant Android gadgets that have actually been dominating the marketplace for the past couple of years.
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Telenav reveals Scout for Cars: Developed In, brings together phones and in-dash systems in navigation consistency
Telenav has long been a purveyor of navigation apps for phones, web browsers, and vehicles, but today the company’s revealed Scout for Cars: Constructed In to bring those platforms together. It’s an in-dash system that provides both the form factor and UX enhanced for cars and all the attributes of the Scout for Phones app. It works using Bluetooth to link to iOS, Android, or Windows Phone devices to sync your details and let you access the mobile app’s existing map information. It also obtains your phone’s information connection, which offers users access to voice control and search and discovery functions, plus real-time weather condition and traffic updates making use of the in-dash touchscreen.
Search for Cars: Constructed In can also seamlessly hand off navigation responsibilities to the phone when you exit your vehicle– a convenient function for individuals as directionally challenged on foot as they are behind the wheel. And, if you’re bothered with getting lost ought to you forget to bring your phone, fear not, for Scout for Cars: Built In uses your phone to offer a better experience, but it’s not reliant upon it, so it still gets you where you should go on its own. The system is presently offered to automakers today, so the system should be finding its way into car dealerships sometime quickly.
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Look: we understand lots of on Verizon aren’t pleased that the carrier has actually disclosed strategies to lengthen its upgrade intervals right as smartphone upgrade period is striking complete stride. Nevertheless, there could be a consolation reward. As of April 21st, “some gadgets” in its smartphone range, not simply the existing tablets, will apply for a Gadget Payment Strategy that spreads out the full costs over the course of a year, letting those who long for the current mobile hardware (most likely, you) upgrade without either having to sign a contract or pay every little thing in advance. Seems like a really UnCarrier thing to do, does not it? Almost, unfortunately. The carrier informs us that these payments sit on top of existing service plans, not inside them– the base service rate won’t decrease in year two. T-Mobile will stay the much better imagine anyone regularly changing mobile phones, then, but those on Verizon will at least have a degree of liberty.
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Chrome Beta for Android just hit version 27 today, delivering with it a few nice enhancements to what is already arguably the best mobile browser on the market. The two biggest tweaks are the ability to view your tab history on the tablet version by holding down the browser back button and the addition of a fullscreen mode on the phone. Scrolling down to make the address bar disappear on a handset is a extremely welcome change. A lack of fullscreen browsing was one of the few quirks of Chrome that occasionally had us contemplating a return to the stock Android browser. There are a couple of other, less notable, tweaks such as support for client side certificates. The Omnibar will also now continue to display any search terms you enter, instead of the URL for the results. You can see the full change log at the source and download Chrome Beta for Android at the more coverage link.
Source: Chrome Releases
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Sprint is bringing two Windows Phone 8 devices to its network this summer, from HTC and Sammsung. After committing to Windows Phone earlier this year, The Verge understands that Sprint will carry the Samsung Ativ S and an unannounced HTC “Tiara” handset. The Tiara was first unveiled by @evleaks over at Unwired View, with mid-range specifications and a 4.3-inch WVGA Super LCD2 display.
Samsung’s Ativ S handset has not yet been made available in the US, so Sprint will be the first carrier to offer this particular handset. We’re told that it will be altered slightly on the exterior compared to the worldwide version, but that the internal components will remain largely the same. Sprint’s launch of two Windows Phone 8 devices completes the…
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http://2013gadgetsreviews.blogspot.in/2013/01/dream-mobiles-for-2013.html Featuring Finest sellers for 2013. Finest 8 smart phones for 2013. Click the link to …