AnandTech Article Channel

Monday, October 5, 2015

IOS 9: The 5 Hottest Features Of Apples New Mobile OS

IOS 9 is now available for free download on compatible devices from the latest devices to older devices such as the iPhone 4S, iPad mini, iPad 2 and the iPod touch 5th generation. Apple cognoscneti are falling all over themselves to get this newest update, but for the general user, the question that is usually asked is “why should I upgrade?”

Like most of the major software releases from Apple, IOS 9 has many great new features but here are 5 of the hottest features that will likely send most readers scurrying to upgrade.

1.       Multitasking – unlike their Android contemporaries, IOS did not support multitasking before IOS 9.  This has no doubt created quite a bit of gadget envy among IOS users when Android users multitask effortlessly.

2.       Slide Over, split view and other views – these new ways to view the screen are the way to implement the multitasking ability of IOS. So now you can split the screen on your iPad, iPhone or iTouch allowing you to finally perform multiple tasks easily.

3.       News App – IOS 9 comes with the News App which gathers news from sources across the internet, based on your interests. This is like a news reader application with the great graphical interface Apple is known for. As you use the application, it remembers your choices and interests which allow it to customize the news feed.

4.       Notes – the launch of IOS 9 brings a pumped up version of the Notes app. Apple made so many improvements that it actually rivals the free Evernote app. In fact some features of the Note app surpass those of even the premium Evernote app.

5.       iCloud Drive – in a move to further enhance the use of iCloud, IOS 9 now provides very convenient access to the iCloud drive. It is now right there on the home screen. Access and data management of your iCloud files have likewise been enhanced.

There are many other features including a new and vastly improved Siri experience, a 1 hour increase in battery life and more. But these 5 features are among the most highly anticipated because they elevate the iOS user experience to a much higher level. For many users, its like having a new device again.

According to Apple, the upgrade should be available to practically all users at this time so your iOS device may be ready to install the upgrade already. Practice safe upgrading by backing up your data prior to installing the upgrade. 

Take note that the new features installed will vary according to device. For instance, some iPads will not get the multitasking features as these are dependent on the processor installed. More information about the feature implementation is available on

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Is The Upcoming iPad Pro For You?

Several months before the actual release, there was quite a lot of chatter about a much bigger iPad. Of course the discussions were quite animated to say the least because producing such a large tablet seemed to contradict the recent trend towards shrinking gadgets.A few weeks ago though, the rumors were finally confirmed and the iPad Pro was announced and will be available in November.

What then is the iPad Pro and is it the tablet for you?
The iPad Pro is a 12.9 inch tablet designed to compete with the Galaxy Tab, Galaxy Note and the Microsoft Surface. It has an A9X processor and has a quad speaker layout. Like the Note, it will allow input via Apple pencil and like its competitors, can be outfitted with a keyboard. Despite its large screen, the implementation of variable refresh rates, which are a first for Apple tablets, allows for a 10 hour battery life. Definitely enough for the power user.

Designed with the professional in mind
With such impressive (and expensive) specifications, it is clear that this is indeed the iPad for professionals. Seeing the widespread use of iPads in business, the Pro allows for a much better interface for presentations whether face to face, or streamed to a projector. The bigger screen also facilitates the creation of illustrations particularly when the optional Apple pencil is used.
With much more screen real estate, creating music with Garageband is much easier as well. While its still smaller than a regular keyboard, those 3 inches go a long way in freeing the creative mind from the smaller boundaries of the old iPad.

Who should buy it?
Those who wish to be on the bleeding edge of technology, this is a must have gadget. The iPad Pro represents a new genre in iPad computing and will probably give rise to other new products and applications.
For the other power users, its probably not that cut and dried. This is because the iPad Pro falls squarely between the iPad and the MacBook. Having IOS and OSX does have its advantages which many power users may prefer. This is why these users carry an iPad AND a MacBook. For these users, the iPad Pro is overkill and they may not cherish having to bring another gadget along.
However, there is a large class of users that carry either an iPad or a MacBook. This is probably the main market for the Pro. These users may have found themselves often wishing that they either had their MacBook (for bigger screens) or their iPads (for more portability). The iPad Pro gives them the best of both worlds.
The iPad Pro has yet to be released so it would be interesting to see how things will play out once its out on the market. No doubt, there is a lot of excitement and anticipation right now and there is every reason to expect this product to be flying off the shelves. Once the initial frenzy has died down and the iPad Pros are put to good use, then it will become clear what direction it will take, and the user profile will be much clearer. At that point, the decision to buy will be much easier. But given the reputation of Apple products, many people will just opt to buy this the first chance they get. 

Count me in.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

The Samsung Galaxy Note 5

Its all over the sites of the major telecom players in the Philippines. The latest model of the darling of the Android phablet world, the Galaxy Note is now available. The Galaxy Note 5 is available under so many different plans and if the initial sales are any indication, it looks like it will be another home run for Samsung.

But what are the factors that make this Note model better than its predecessor?

The textured plastic construction of the previous Note, with a faux leather finish, was severely criticized by many reviewers. The general consensus was that the Note 4 was lacking in the finish and quality department. The Note 5 however puts all that behind by going with a glass and metal design that exudes quality and feels very solid in hand. It’s a major coup that puts the Note 5 at the head of the finish and build quality line.

The specs of the Note 5 sound like they belong on a desktop, not a mobile phone. It packs an Exynos 8 core CPU, a separate GPU and 4 GB of RAM! This powerful system allows the Note 5 to run programs and games with ease. Early benchmark tests by independent sites show the Note 5 delivering almost twice the multicore performance of the Apple 6S. Bendgate aside, this Note 5 outclasses the iPhone 6S decisively.

The Galaxy S6, S6 Edge and the Galaxy Note 5 all share the same class leading sensor. This sensor is currently rated as the best one by no less than DxOmark Labs. But being a newer model, the Note 5 is set to surpass its siblings by integrating new improved photography modes. It also adds the ability to take RAW files to the mix making the Note 5 a formidable force on mobile photography.

There are a couple of changes that may not appeal to other users particularly the users with old Galaxy Notes looking to upgrade.
The first is the lack of a microSD slot. The Note 5 only comes with 32 or 64 GB. This may be unacceptable to users who need storage over and above 64 GB.
The second is that the Note 5’s battery is not removable. Therefore, the user cannot keep a spare battery on hand. However, this second point may be relatively minor because the Note 5 has a fast charging mode that takes less than half the time needed to charge the phone with conventional chargers. 

Clearly, the demand for the Galaxy Note 5 is well founded. It is considered the best Note to date and is considered the best phablet currently available today. Check it out at your nearest telecom shop.

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