Tag Archives: smartphones

Smartphone Apps that Made 2013 Proud

When it says “2013”, what are your thoughts? If you’ll ask me, I’d say it has been indeed a fun-filled year. In this digital age, all the known techs are actually the ones that help us get through with our everyday activities. Also, these techie gadgets we have always succeed to keep the boredom at bay. One of which could be found at hand, and that’s no other than our trusty handheld device we call smartphone.

Smartphones never go out of style as each year all the big boys of the mobile industry see to it that they have something better to offer on the table—talk about the staggering features of each kind. But as the year 2013 ended, what do you think amused you most with smartphones throughout the year? This has to be said: aside from the neatly designed hardware, software applications also get the limelight as they make these seemingly blank canvasses be as interesting and functional than what the hardware offers. Looking back, can you still recall the apps that got your eyes and fingers glued on your phone’s screen? Read on to remember all the best apps of 2013 that got most of us—if not all—addicted.

#1: Candy Crush Saga

Candy CrushOne of the sweetest gaming apps that 2013 offered is the Candy Crush Saga. If this was real candy, a lot of people might have been diabetic before we even hit 2014. I, for one, am guilty of being trapped by the sweetness of this game as it is one of the most addictive puzzlers there is. In this game, all you have to do is shift the brightly colored sweets to form lines of three—the more the better—and hear the game voice praising you on good moves with puns like ‘sweet’, ‘tasty’, ‘delicious’, and ‘divine’. You just got to love the bursting sweetness of the candies as you shift the sweets in order for you to reach a score and pass the level. [Found on Facebook, iOS, and Android]

#2: CSR Racing

CSR RacingI’m sure your 2013 has been one hell of a ride—all the more when CSR Racing app got your heartbeat racing. And if you are also a certified fanatic of the movie The Fast & Furious, then racing apps positively won’t ever tire out for you. You may not get to change gears and steer wheels like being on a real car feels like, but appropriate taps on the screen are enough to get you going. Earn money by winning the race, and then you can now upgrade car or collect them. This free-to-play drag-racing game would definitely get your eyes spoiled with its stunning, high-fidelity graphics with addictive gameplay to give you a new type of racing experience. [Found on OSX, iOS, and Android]

#3: Wordament

WordamentDo you remember the words 2013 had brought us? There goes the word Twerk coined by Miley Cyrus, and the other—not to mention word of the year for 2013—selfie! Selfie has been voted as the Oxford’s word of the year, giving the credit to all the narcissistic duck-faces who keep snagging out photos of nothing but themselves incessantly. Anyway, keep fumbling for those words because you’re going to need it with this utterly addictive gaming app called Wordament. Originally, this app was only exclusive on Windows platform. But then, the app rolled to various platforms on the year 2013. Basically, you just have to swipe the computer generated grid of letters into words within just a minute and a half—the longer the word is, the better. And when the time’s up, the players will then be ranked and all is revealed on a giant leaderboard. Would winning in the game render you speechless? [Found on Windows Phone, Windows 8, iOS, and Android]

If you haven’t tried these apps before the year 2013 ended, it’s never too late. After all, they are there for us to enjoy. Load them to your phones now and check out the fresh apps of 2014 that are absolutely worth a try.

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Amid the Success of the iPhone 5s, How is the iPhone 5c Doing?

Amid the Success of the iPhone 5s, How is the iPhone 5c DoingIt is just common for siblings, especially twins, to have conflicts that can further lead to a full-blown sibling rivalry. And for the people around them, they can’t help but compare. Often, it’s a case of a health competition, but there are times when it can get very ugly. But you know what, this doesn’t exclusively apply to humans; it can also be witnessed on anything you can think of.

Guess what, Apple’s brainchildren are also affected by the aforementioned phenomenon. The iPhones 5s and 5c are always being compared to each other, given that they were released in the same place at the same time. Thereafter, people have been scrutinizing the figures that both models are doing about. And as it turns out, the 5c is left behind in the numbers game while the 5s has been regarded as the fastest-selling iPhone of all time.

Some might ask, why is this even the case? For starters, the 5s has been integrated with a number of powerful specs and innovative features that are first seen in the smartphone industry, such as the Touch ID and the A7 processor. In addition, the camera enhancements of the 5s have captured photography enthusiasts and selfie-addicts alike. And if you are on the brink of making the biggest decision of your life, will you be choosing the feature-packed 5s or the plastic-coated 5c, which are just one hundred dollars away from each other? Even I might have chosen the 5s, considering the parsimonious me.

Let’s not go further away; anyway, it’s the iPhone 5c we’re talking about here. According to Dominic Sunnebo, strategic insight director at telecoms research firm Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, “The cheaper 5c appeals to a broader audience than Apple usually attracts.” The colorful, plastic-covered phone has captivated an older, less well-off clientele in the U.S. market. Figures show that 42 percent of iPhone 5c owners earn less than $49,000 compared to the 21 percent for iPhone 5s. Also, demographics in terms of age shows that the average age of 5c users are of 38 years old, unlike for the 5s of 34 years old.

However, the greatest news here for Apple comes from the appeal that the iPhone 5c has among non-iOS users. It shows that almost half of the 5c users have switched from competitor brands, specifically from Samsung and LG. For them, the 5c turned out to be the safest transition from whatever mobile platform they were into to iOS. After that, it’s up to the 5c to ensure that the new recruits will love iOS that they will never consider leaving ever again.

After all these, can we regard the 5c a big success? I share the opinion of a number of analysts that it is. It may not have outdone the 5s, but it definitely helped Apple in boosting its share in the global smartphone market.

Would You Expose Your Dropbox Files to the Masses?

dropboxNot everything you have is meant to be shared. While religious teachings want us to practice generosity, there are just some things in life that are better left unknown; better left unsaid. So if you’d think that one of which is your password to your personal accounts, then you are partly right.

I’m sorry, what? Partly?

It’s not a misprint or something. Actually, you do need to share your password, but evidently, only to the person close to you to prepare for that inevitable day when you breathe your last breath, or become incapacitated. But… you should know how and when to draw the line. Do you have your own Dropbox account? That’s more likely what we are going to talk about today.

This file hosting service—as we all users know—offers cloud storage, file synchronization, and client software. With that being said, it lessens the need for USB data cables since you can just access and/or drop any electronic files in your Dropbox account so long as you are connected to the internet. Well, it’s good to have a repository for all your files, but what files really are you keeping in your Dropbox account? May I know? Or the question is: should I know?

Everything you store in your Dropbox account is definitely none of everyone’s business apart from you. And as I have said, not everything is meant to be shared. Now, if you have an iPhone 5S in your hand then there’s nothing pretty much to be bothered about. Well, except when you are asleep and someone used your finger to access your handheld device. On a lighter note, what if someone accidentally—or perhaps intentionally—got your Dropbox credentials? Would you freak out? Shudder no more, because Two-factor authentication has got you covered.

What is two-factor authentication, you ask? Well, it basically combines your password with an additional security code that can only be used once. This code is then sent to your smartphone that you need to enter upon logging into your Dropbox account to access it. Sounds pretty neat, right? If you don’t want to disclose your Dropbox Files to the public, then might as well set up the two-factor authentication.

 Here’s how:

To secure your Dropbox files, first off, you must log in to your Dropbox account. Then once you are logged in, go the Settings by selecting your name in the upper right corner of the window. Found the Settings already? Great! Now, select the Security tab. Now, look for the Account in the heading and find Two-step verification. Once you’ve found it, you may now enable it. Dropbox will then walk you through the process as you setup two-factor authentication. It will then prompt you to enter your Dropbox password. Once you’ve entered the password, you will be asked whether you want the security code via text messages or use the authenticator app instead. If you are subscribed in an unlimited text messaging plan, then it would be pretty much easy for you to choose receiving security codes via text messages instead. But if not, then you can always have the authenticator app that can provide lots of suggestions, too. Now, if you opted for the text message, you will be prompted to enter your phone number. Key it in, and then just follow the process.

But what if you’ve experienced a mishap, say like lost your phone? You need not worry, since two-factor authentication leaves you a 16-digit emergency backup code that you can use to access your Dropbox account once again.

So when you log into your account the next time, you will now be asked to enter the security code apart from your username and password. They will then send you a message that contains the code. Happy Dropboxing indeed!

Do You Really Need to Secure Your Passwords?

Secure Your Password

There has been a plethora of security systems innovated to evidently secure valuable things against people who have malicious intentions, be it with pricey possessions or personal identity. And so people learned to protect these things by putting them in a vault or securing them with passwords.

People have now been more careful about putting passwords on their accounts even on their smartphones. You’ll never know, in just a few toggle and taps of a stranger, all your precious things have already turned to dust. So, it really pays to have a unique password in which you alone know—or does it?

What if one day you became incapacitated? Or worse comes to worst, what if you… died? As someone said, no one stays healthy forever. And with that being said, a person in your life may need to access all your accounts when the time comes that you barely remember anything. If they know your password, then it will definitely be much easier for them to access your accounts.

This digital world is now evidently password-protected. And it shows from your favorite social networking sites, even to the files of your phone. And so, if you want to protect your handset wholly, a mobile back case won’t be enough. As you protect your phone’s hardware, the software must be protected as well, most especially if it contains confidential information that shouldn’t be divulged in the masses.

Now, if (God forbid) something bad happened to a loved one and you needed to access his or her personal accounts, actually there is a way even without knowing the credentials. But, you are going to get through a rough and tough process just to access the account.

A great example would be on Google’s page for Accessing a deceased person’s mailing account. You are then required to gather up several official files that you also need to send via snail-mail—and that includes the death certificate, of course. Not to mention, you also need to get your pockets and purses all set for paying a pretty penny. Plus, there is also a Part 2 of the processes in which you will be required to get additional legal documents that includes an order from a U.S. court and yada yada.

See how much pain that brings? Of course there would be someone in our life that we can trust to not eat the single donut in the fridge until you get home. It can be your wife, mom, loved one; relative… anyone that is close to you that you know that won’t hold anything against you. One way or another, these people close to you will need to access your accounts just to continue what you have started. Be it a business or for personal matter, they must know them because they are part of your personal and private life. Now, do you really need to secure your passwords even from your loved ones?

Fun Apps for Christmas

Can you hear it? Can you smell it? Can you feel it? In just a few more sleep, the most awaited season annually before each year ends is already being welcomed by people across all nations! What season, winter? Eh. It is the Christmas season, of course. This season sure brings all the bells and whistles as it gathers people—even those who are oceans apart—all close at heart.

Do you want a fun way to enjoy Christmas season? What about the fun way of waiting till this special season comes? May the spirit of Christmas be in our hearts through our smartphones as you load them with fun apps made especially for Yuletide!

Christmas Countdown

#1: Christmas Countdown

Are you always excited about how many days are left before it’s finally Christmas? Boy, I bet you couldn’t sleep already! You can’t wait no longer for Christmas, huh? Save yourself out from exhaustion on counting how many days should you wake and how many more nights should you still sleep before it’s finally *gasp air* Christmas! With this app, you can get an interactive Live Wallpaper with a Christmas Countdown in a snowfall of lights. Not only does this app let you have an instant countdown for Christmas, but it can also be set to 3D New Years Countdown!

Jigsaw

#2: Christmas Puzzle Game: Jigsaw

Do you want to piece together each day as we draw near closer to Christmas, yet in a more fun and relaxing way? Let’s cut to the chase, and have yourself a merry little puzzling and exciting Christmas with this Christmas Jigsaw Puzzle Game! Enjoy dragging the puzzle pieces to the right place to complete the puzzle as you make your way to experience the spirit of Christmas! Loaded with lots of Christmas pictures, you are surely going to love your Christmas.

Slice

#3: Christmas Slice

And you think nothing could spoil your Christmas? Think again. It can be you who could spoil it! To bend the predictability of Christmas, here is Christmas Slice app that lets you help the bat to steal Santa’s gifts by cutting boards, and using items such as Christmas socks. The little bat wants to steal those gifts so he could give it to his fiancée. This little guy is sweet after all. Everything is fair in love and war indeed. So, might as well help this little sweet bat!

Bouncy Bill

#4: Bouncy Bill Christmas Style

Have you played Bouncy Bill already? Now, check this out as he is now in a super festive mood to celebrate with you this Christmas season! Simply tap the screen to make Bouncy Bill jump vertically to reach his destination as quickly as possible. He must then race against time so he could break the evil spell of the evil Wizard Zorik so he can regain his ability to move left and right. Complete each level and make him the happiest Christmas Tre…—Turtle!

Gift List

#5: Christmas Gift List

As what the name of this app implies, it’s here to save the day! With Christmas Gift List, rest assured you won’t likely be caught on the last minute shopping! At least, now you can track gift ideas, set a gift budget for each person, and mark the gift as purchased as you do your shopping! It is even password protected so it will be for your eyes only. With this app installed, you can now forget no one when you give gifts!

Install these apps on your phone, and I bet you will never close its cell phone cover! Hah! Isn’t it nice to enjoy waiting for Christmas while having fun? Well, yeah! Have a Happy Yuletide!

Can Plants vs. Zombies Reach Epic Proportions?

iOS users are very fortunate because the sequel of the very famous and beloved PopCap game, Plants vs. Zombies, has long been released on iTunes. The new game is named “Plants vs. Zombies 2: It’s About Time.” The theme of the game is so out-of-this-world that people have crazed for it. By mid-September, it was already downloaded more than 25 million times, with players spending more than 140 million hours of game play in the process. What’s more unusually fun than relying on plants to defend you against the zombies hungry to eat your brain, eh?

 Given the fame that the game has received, this we ask: is there a chance that it will become big in the gaming empire like Mario? The legacy of Super Mario still manages to expand as time passes by. Mario has become a global icon seen on mashed-up games, the TV, billboards, the internet, and designed on shirts, bags, mugs, mobile accessories, and any other merchandise you can think of. This is a testament on how the short, podgy, Italian plumber has influenced the whole world. Can Plants vs. Zombies reach what Mario has reached?

 The developers of the game are optimistic on this feat. They hold on to the notion that Super Mario was not built in only a single day; it took the game quite a very long time for it to be regarded as how it is today. But then again, what does it really take for a game to establish a name for itself? PopCap believes that the answer lies on details. The team which developed the game did more than just drawing the characters and keying in a bunch of codes. They literally spent months just working on a single plant, trying to figure out how to make it work. That amount of keenness to detail is what contributed to games, such as Super Mario, to garner a lot of loyal fans.

 On a different note, according to Michael Pachter, an analyst at Wedbush Securities, “The free-to-play strategy might help Plants vs. Zombies if their goal is merchandising sales.” He adds, “I think it certainly has franchise potential but not on the same scale as Mario.”

 Maybe it’s too premature to speculate on this matter. What really matters as of now is that we are continually being captivated by the wonders of the game. Who knows, without us even being aware, Plants vs. Zombies might get to build itself its own empire. And all it requires is for gamers like you and me to go with the flow and enjoy the game in our smartphones or tablets like how its creators want us to. It’s just a matter of time till this game reaches epic proportions, especially once the sequel has been made available for Android users as well.

Windows Phones: Better than iOS and Android

When talking about mobile operating systems, the big boys in the mobile industry pinpoints to—more often than not—only two platforms: iOS and Android. Most especially now that they have launched their respective flagships that are on their way to hit the shelves! Just have a few more sleep and you can now see them available on trusty online mobile stores like e_cell.

While the blogosphere is busy talking about these aforementioned great platforms from Apple and Google, netizens miss out all the fun they could get from Microsoft’s Windows Phones. In fact, there are reasons why Windows Phone is ahead of the competition. Let’s have a rundown with Windows Phone’s greatness below:

#1: Windows Phone Home screen

win home screen

Apple iPhone’s home screen is somewhat limiting, but the design is intentional so as to maximize the battery life. With that being said, Android phones have much more edge with interactivity. You think you can never enjoy any home screen other than Android’s? Think again. Try using Android and Windows phones, and you’ll know what interactivity really means. Windows phones have live tiles that help you on selecting the app without having the need to swipe and tap several times. You can organize the tiles easily, move, remove, or resize it depending on your liking.

#2: Microsoft Office

win office

No surprise at all. Since Windows Phones are made by Microsoft, it’ll then be pushing its mobile Office efforts on these handsets. Although you can already get Office files on your Android and iOS devices, Windows Phones offer a better experience on viewing or editing these files.After all, you’re going to need third party apps for you to view Office files on your iOS or Android smartphone. But with Windows Phone, you can start viewing or editing your files right off the bat!

#3: Windows Storage

skydriveTo add space on your mobile phone, we expand its storage capacity by using microSD cards if there are available slots. Apple’s iPhone has no microSD slot, but it can rely to the iCloud. Android phones can also trust services like Google Drive and Dropbox; what about Windows Phones? They call their syncing and storage solution: the SkyDrive—giving you instant access to all your documents in no time.

#4: Social Networking

social networkDo you have countless social networking accounts maintaining? Then I feel all the troubles you get on switching apps so as to check the update on the other. Good thing is that the Windows Phone People app pulls all the updates and notifications from various social networking sites together so you could keep updated across all your accounts on what your friends and family are up to.

#5: Battery Saver

battery saverMost mobile platforms are only concerned about giving you the best features they can offer. But, more often than not, they just render your battery’s phone all juiced out. It then gives you the need to buy replacement batteries. Now, Windows Phone offers a Battery Saver that activates automatically when your phone’s battery life drops low. With other phones, you’ll have to download apps so as to prolong your phone’s battery life. Good thing, Windows Phones are always ready. You can even activate the Battery Saver manually if you like.

With all these features on Windows Phones, aren’t they the ones that deserve the limelight than that of iOS and Android?