Monday, July 27, 2015

Apple Eyes Remote Control Personalized Via Fingerprint, Retinal Scan


Apple’s Remote Control – Fingerprint/Retina sensor

As proposed by Apple/USPTP, future remote controls can now sport a fingerprint sensor and the company intends a TV remote which could access personal profile as well as setting based on fingerprint or retina. Patent application, known as `Device Configuration for Multiple Users Using Remote User Biometrics’ was published recently by the US Patent and Trademark Office, lays out the technology for personalizing remote controls.

The notion behind it is to enable individuals in a household to access a personal profile on a TV, set-top box or any other device created on biometric information like the fingerprint, and picked up by the remote control. As per Apple’s application, this type of a device could provide a `personalized experience without the need and or bothering others.

Such a type of a technology could spare the disturbance of choosing certain, single profile for the device, on the contrary a touch of your finger or scan of the eye could recall customized setting or those for each household member. Besides, it could also enable parents in restricting certain content for their children.

Technology Extended to Media Centres/Desktop/Tablets ……

Though Apples uses TV as an apparent example one could access several other kinds of devices with a remote control which can scan fingerprint or eye and the technology could go further to media centres, laptops, desktop computers, tablets, smartphones, smart watches as well as other wearbles, including kitchen appliances, cars, gaming consoles, air conditioner, lighting systems and much more.
An example given by Apple is where both a husband and wife may tend to use a particular electronic device like a TV, computer or gaming console and both may have their own respective settings. These could be volume level, screen saver, screen layout, brightness and contrast levels. On scanning of the fingerprint or retina of the husband, the remote control could activate his settings and doing the same for his wife would provide her customized settings.

Another example would be that the TV, media player or any other electronic device could recommend particular content like TV shows, music, movies and video games established on the biometric scan while the third example is a TV with a remote control for a general user could reconfigure itself with specific content as well as setting that is already connected with the person on a different TV, when the person has been acknowledged through a fingerprint or retinal scan.

Biometric Technology Adaptable/Universal

Existing devices already enable the user in creating individual profiles and identify them through certain forms of recognition, for instance, the Xbox Kinect of Microsoft is capable of identifying a person through a body scan.

However, presuming that Apple’s remote control creation would make headway, this kind of biometric technology could be more adaptable and universal in recognizing or identifying quickly. As in the case with all Apple patent applications, it is unknown if the company intends to ship biometric capable remote or something else.

Apple has planned to launch an all new remote with built-in touchpad along with an expected Apple TV hardware update, an important time to introduce Touch ID to the set-top streamer according to recent rumours. It is widely debated as to when exactly that revision is due though some reports have indicated that it could probably be this fall.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

How to Enable the iCloud Drive App on iOS 9


An Updated iCloud Drive - Hidden App in iOS 9

An updated iCloud Drive setting in iOS 9 allows a hidden app that helps in managing the entire file library. Users could go to Settings >iCloud > iCloud Drive > Show on Home Screen and after activating one will find a new icon on the home screen for the iCloud Drive application. Before the iOS 9, the only option to access files that were stored in the iCloud Drive account was on using a certain app for a specific file type. iOS did not have the dedicated app to view the files and it was frustrating for several users. iOS 9 provides an optional iCloud Drive app wherein it services as a file browser for all the files that are stored in one’s account. Once the iOS is updated, users can enable the iCloud Drive app with a few taps such as
  • Launch the Settings app on the iOS device
  • Scroll down till one finds the iCloud listing and select it
  • Tap on iCloud Drive
  • Set the show on home screen switch to the `On’ position
  • Press the home button on the device.

Functions on `Need to Know’ Basis

A white shiny icon with the iCloud Drive logo will show up on the home screen and on launching it, users can find the stored files that are available to view and edit. On the other hand if one tends to forget to enable the iCloud Drive app on updating, iOS then displays a prompt after some time asking if you would like to enable it. If the same is chosen but would not want the icon on the home screen you could follow the steps that are outlined to disable the app.

Apple, as a consumer hardware as well as software company has always shown users the functions on a need to know basis and at sometimes, hiding functions from view in order that everything works without user intervention. Apple is now changing that course with iCloud Drive where its cloud storage service which was released last year with iOS 8 and Mac OS 10.10.

According to 9to5Mac, it reports on an iCloud Drive app hidden inside the iOS 9 beta. Though not visible by default, one can bring iCloud Drive in view with simple toggle and thereafter view as well as manage the files stored in with Dropbox or Google Drive which will appear as an app icon on the phone together with the other apps.

Free Storage of 5GB for Files/Photos/Backups

Users of iOS 8 could only view the files from within the app which could be accessed through iCloud Drive. Yosemite enabled users in managing all their iCloud Drive files in a different folder which was similar to Dropbox as well as the other cloud storage app. Apple has been offering users free storage of 5GB for their files, photos as well as backups of their iOS devices. Though the app may not look much in organizing the files in a centralized iCloud Drive, the app makes it quite easy to access and would even make iCloud Drive a handy means for workflow. The iOS 9 public beta is available presently and the full version of iOS 9 would probably be launched later in the fall.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

iPhone 7 Could Have 4K Video Camera And Special Recording Modes

Next iPhone – An Ungraded Camera/New Recording Modes

According to leaked information, the next iPhone of Apple features an upgraded camera together with new recording modes which will utilise the phone’s Force Touch screen. The details of the latest phone seemed to have been revealed in a deleted post from one of the employee at Foxconn that makes most of Apple’s hardware.

It appears that Apply would release a pink iPhone with an extra high resolution camera together with Force Touch screen which enables it to know how hard it is being pressed. According to information leak, the camera will comprise of a 12MP sensor for photos and would also be able to take 4K video. Similar to the camera in the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, it would be a little extended from the back of the phone.

While utilising the camera, the Force Touch feature which would be built in the screen will be capable of controlling extra methods of either triggering a burst of stills at the time of filming or switching from photo to video mode as per various translations. For long, the Force Touch had been expected to come to the iPhone since its launch in Apple Watch as well as the new MacBook, and it is rumoured that Apple has already put such phones into production.

Hustled with Touch ID Fingerprint Sensor- 30% Faster

The phone would also be hustled with the Touch ID fingerprint sensor which would operate for about 30 percent faster. Its feature enables the screen to work as a type of a button with additional options. Being introduced with the Apple Watch and MacBook, it was eventually expected to make its way to all devices of Apple.

According to Bloomberg, the company has been working on the screens for the iPhone for at least two years. However, supplies are gearing up to make them possible, well ahead of the launch of the iPhone 6S or iPhone 7 this autumn.

Besides this, the phone would be having more RAM making the processing much faster though it will have the same volume of storage capacity. The pink phone of Apple had been rumoured some months back which has been confirmed by leaked information. While some rumours have indicated that it would be a rose gold colour, like the more expensive Apple Watch, others had indicated that it will be pink aluminium.

Pink iPhone 

The company is also said to be trying other new colours and it is rumoured that it is experimenting with the pink iPhone which would not be the first in the colour. The iPhone 5c seemed to have pink in its range of colours and though Apple seldom presents new colours to its line-up, recently it had brought a new gold colour in its range which has been rolled out to most of its products.

Apple is known to release its new phones in autumn, the recent one being announced in September. Besides the new screen technology, the new phone would probably look like the existing iPhone 6 and 6 Plus according to Bloomberg and would be available in the same 4.7 inch and 5.5 sizes. This would probably be helpful in reducing the manufacturing time regardless of the complexity of the new screens.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Microsoft Windows 10 Free Upgrade


Windows 10

Microsoft’s Free Upgrades – Windows 10

Microsoft has recently announced that they will be offering free upgrades to Windows 10, the next version of its operating system, first for Windows 8.1 users and then for Windows 7. According to Microsoft’s executive vice president of operating systems, Terry Myerson, the company would be upgrading any devices running Windows 8 to Windows 10, for free, during the first year of availability of the software. This free upgrade would also be applicable for Window 7 devices as well as Windows Phone 8.1 devices.

The price of the software for the upgrade after the one year window is yet to be announced by the company. Myerson had stated during the unveiling event of Microsoft’s Windows 10 in Redmond, Wash, that they think Windows as a service and now developers could target every Windows device. It has been designed with a view in convincing consumers that Windows is worth the effort and Windows 10 is an attempt in clearing the slate clean after missteps with Windows 8 inclusive of the new start menu that drew complaints from users of PC who missed greatly the traditional menu.

Simple Upgrade Benefit Window 10 Adoption

Windows 7 is run by more than half of all desktops users in the world and around 20% still tend to run XP, which is a fourteen years old operating system. Windows 8.1 on the other hand is yet to reach 10 percent. Hardware companies have been giving away software upgrades in order to keep their users secured to their ecosystems, where Apple for instance has made Mac OS and iOS free together with several of its productivity as well as photo management tools.

A simple upgrade path would benefit Windows 10 adoption instead of dealing with a number of various versions of Windows and other upgrade cost where most of the consumers could take this free update and have the benefit of running the updated version of Microsoft. Myerson had also shared Microsoft’s vision for Windows as a service and not just an operating system, a major part of which is its new commitment in keeping devices reliably updated all through the `supported lifetime for the device’. This indicates that those upgrading from Microsoft’s earlier versions of Windows would be receiving updates constantly to keep it up-to-date as possible.

Enable Developers to Target Every Windows Device

Myerson also noted that it would enable developers to target every single Windows device, when they build apps and make it easier for them to reach more users which would be appreciated by the developers as well as the users. Michael Silver of Gartner stated at the research firm’s annual technology conference that `if Microsoft wants consumers to update and keep up-to-date it would mean that Microsoft is going to have to give those consumers those updates for free and there is no other way to do it.

 He further added that `a consumer would not be giving Microsoft a credit card and ask them to charge for a new release whenever one come out and it is very likely that consumer releases will be free’. This would be affecting Microsoft’s bottom line, and Windows 10 probably will be the nameplate for the OS for years much more than the usual three year cycle for major upgrades from Windows 7 to Windows 8, where free would mean that consumers would not have to pay to upgrade their PC’s operating system.
New Editions Enhances Sales
Constant free updates and upgrades would be putting the computer makers in a bind since generally they tend to rely on new editions to enhance sales especially to consumers. Silver’s debates that Windows 10 if not free itself, should offer free updates to consumers, came with some forty five minutes presentation where he together with his colleague, Stephen Kleynhans discussed on the future of Office and Windows before a standing room crowd at Gartner Symposium/.ITxpo 2014. The two placed Microsoft’s Windows 10 and Microsoft’s promise of steady stream of updates in the context for business which had shied from Windows 8 and is being urged back into the fold with promises that Windows 10 will be what its successor were not. Some of the queries raised by users are:
Will it run XP programs
Windows 10 would be running most of the old Windows programs where the compatibility could be checked by running GWX, the Get Windows 10 app. Microsoft does not have information with regards to every device or program for Windows though it has a comprehensive list of know issues on compatibility. XP programs not running Windows 7 could probably run in Windows 10.

 Free copy of Windows XP to run in XP mode in Windows 7 Pro is provided by Microsoft which gives many years of transition to updated programs though not intended as a permanent solution. Users could continue using XP in current Windows 7 system till 2020 at the user’s risk. Alternate option is that one can run XP in a virtual machine in Windows 10 or else use a separate XP PC which not connected to the net.

Why is it free

Microsoft is giving some money from the fairly small number of those who buy Windows upgrades and in return with a hope of getting more of them in using the same version of Windows instead of having a rough figure of 1.6 billion users spreading over Windows XP, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Vista and Windows Phone.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

iPhone 7 (or iPhone 6S) Leaked Pictures Show Similarities to Older Model

iPhone 6/iPhone 7 – Identical Case

The next version iPhone seems to look identical to the prevailing one but will fix one of its biggest issues. The phone in question is likely to be known as the iPhone 6S instead of iPhone 7 and will have an identical case. However it will also tend to have a much enhanced battery life, a pressure sensitivity display and would be must faster.

According to leaked information seen by 9to5mac, the extra battery life will not be just added by enhancing the battery capacity but will be brought by including a special new modem chip that will be doubling the internet speed as well as make the phone run in a much more efficient manner as reported in the blog.

The latest chips would be made by Qualcomm and will drive the maximum speed on 4G LTE to 300Mbps which would be much faster than most of the home routers. Nevertheless, the extra speed would probably not be seen, initially since most of the speed of data connection tends to be limited by phone networks and not the hardware.According to rumours, the company could add additional battery capacity to the phone.

Smaller Motherboard in Same Case – Improved Battery Life

The new phone features smaller motherboard in the same case which means that the extra space could be filled in with battery, by Apple. It is rumoured that the new phones come in the same sizes as the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus and will also have improved battery life due to their software.

A range of new battery features was unveiled by Apple as part of iOS 9 which will enable it to bolt off intensive features, should the battery run low besides other things. The issue of smartphone users is battery life and while Apple together with its competitors has done great improvement with regards to battery capabilities, the actual life has stayed the same.

This is due to the use of extra capacity in powering new features instead of letting phones to live longer. It seems that Apple is now settling into a cycle of upgrade with big release followed by smaller ones that speeds up and enhances the phone. However it has maintained the same basic look and the `S’ half of the cycle has introduced big features.

Addition of Force Touch

The iPhone 3GS came with video recording while the 4S was the first to have Siri and the 5S came with the Touch ID fingerprint sensor. The big feature, this time could be the addition of Force Touch. Phones inclusive of this features enables the phone to know how hard it is being pressed, have gone into production though could be held back for the release of the iPhone 7 which is likely to come up in 2016.

This feature allows the screen work as a type of button enabling extra choices. It had been introduced along with Apple Watch and also with some MacBooks and expected to make its progress eventually in all of Apple’s devices. According to Bloomberg, the company is said to be working on the screens for the iPhone for around two years. However, suppliers are gearing up to make them ready probably ahead of the launch of the iPhone 6S or iPhone 7 in autumn.