Friday, 20 December 2013

Capture Those Christmas Memories

With Christmas day around the corner and Apple hoping to smash their previous record sales around this time, we have narrowed down some iPhone apps that can turn you into the family photographer this Christmas.

For many people purchasing a smartphone, the camera is still one of the key features that help decide what model to opt for. The iPhone 5S now comes with an upgraded 8MP iSight camera which is its best yet but there are still some useful apps that can transform your images.

Here are three of our favourites:

Text Camera
With so many platforms online for people to share their imagery with friends and the online world, captions are becoming the key to many photos. Text Camera focuses on the text and allows photographers to edit their imagery with inspirational quotes or doodles. It does come with its own pre-installed doodles and text but, of course, you can create your own like ‘Grandad has fallen asleep next to the fire, AGAIN!’

Camera Art FX
Filters are extremely popular for photography apps and many come installed with their own interesting features, but Camera Art FX allows some fun functionality.  In fact, they can cover up a lot of the more basic amateur photographic mistakes often seen online. You can add effects like a comic style one, a painted effect or to make it look as if you doodled it. Perfect for when you want to spruce up your ‘selfie’.

This impressive app pitches itself as a tool that can appeal to both amateurs and professionals and comes with a number of high-tech options.  For example, it is fitted with a 6x digital zoom, ability to improve the exposure and focus and even allows the option to take forward facing photographs with flash.  So, this is definitely one for the selfie-fanatic.  Its motto is ‘Shoot like a pro’ and that’s exactly what it lets you do; you can turn your iPhone into one that rivals some of the newest cameras on the market … impressive!
So, when it comes to creating a timeline of your Christmas day festivities, you have a number of apps to help you do it. Have a very Snappy Christmas!

Friday, 13 December 2013

The Console Battle - PS4 vs Xbox One

A couple of weeks ago we wrote an article ‘What’s On Your Christmas Wish List?’ – If you haven’t read it, check it out.  If you have, you’d know that one of the desired presents was a PS4, even though it hadn’t quite been released yet.

Well, it is available now and has been for a week or so and has caused quite a stir. In fact, in its first week of release it broke all records for any console released before it, much to the misfortune of the Xbox One.

The Xbox One was release before the PS4, selling over 2 million consoles in just 18 days, which is still a pretty impressive figure, even if the PS4 is predicted to break this number when it reaches the 3 week mark. The Xbox One has averaged 111,111 units shifted per day since its release so the PS4 has some serious selling to do, but Sony do look likely to beat that total.

But, which one is better?

In terms of pure units shifted, the PS4 is likely to take the crown come Christmas morning, but that doesn’t answer the question of performance. Games for both consoles are always very similar with each having their own individual claims – the Xbox with Forza Motorsport 5 and the PS4’s answer to that, DriveClub (due in 2014). So, there is no real telling them apart from this.

The pricing might help decide … the Xbox One costs £429, while the PS4 is a snip at just £349 – not much difference but the difference equates to the price of a game plus accessories.  PS4 wins this battle!

The controllers have been adapted too, although the Xbox’s has only been modified slightly.  Sony has changed their appearance quite a bit and it looks rather futuristic, whereas the Xbox has opted for a very similar design to their previous console. Winner – PS4.

The console design is where the Xbox really comes into its own, putting the word box in Xbox. Although boxy in shape, it is sleek and stylish and will look great settled next to your LED TV. Winner – Xbox One.

So, with no real difference in performance, games or price, we have to say the PS4 might just pip it this time around. Well done Sony!

Friday, 6 December 2013

Massive Move For Microsoft

Just weeks after the release of its Surface 2 tablet, Microsoft has announced another massive feat, the merge with Nokia.

Microsoft’s takeover of Nokia’s device and services came to the press this week and was met with two thumbs up by the US department of Justice and the European Union.

Microsoft, who has been regarded as inferior to competitors Apple and Samsung in the mobile market, is looking to reverse this perception by merging with Nokia’s line of smartphones. With the Windows Phone 8 operating system, increasing improvement and growth of their app store and Office 2013 software, the future for Microsoft-Nokia smartphones looks bright.

In fact, the recently released Nokia Lumia has sold over 8.8 million units so far, which is even better news for Microsoft.  Nokia was once a front-runner in the mobile world, but until the Lumia (which runs the Microsoft software); their sales were down 27% when compared to last year.

The deal was anticipated to take place in the first three months of 2014, but the move was announced this week, much to the delight of Microsoft.

Microsoft Chief Executive, Steve Ballmer, described the deal as a big, bold step forward. He also said, “Microsoft is a company that was once only known for its software and PCs, but is progressively becoming a company focused on devices and services.”

It’s true; we all know Microsoft for its impressive software and tablets, but there is a lot of potential in the mobile market for a company the size of Microsoft (and Nokia) to compete with the likes of Samsung and Apple.

The deal, that may sound very prosperous for Microsoft, has come at a cost though.  It is thought to be in the region of £4.6bn and will include around 32,000 employees transferring to Microsoft from Nokia. The takeover deal has also included a 10-year licensing arrangement with Nokia, so the Nokia brand can remain on current mobile phone products.

This is no doubt an exciting time for Microsoft and it could be an extremely exciting one for us as the consumer too.

Friday, 29 November 2013

Build Your Own Computer From Scratch

If like us, you grew up building all sort of things from Lego through to den’s made of sheets, then you can probably appreciate what a company called Kano has created.

Kano, a Kickstarter team, is a computer kit designed to help people of any age to assemble their own computer from scratch, as well as helping them to learn basic coding skills too. The project was originally launched through Kickstarter with the intention of raising $100,000 in funding, but the project has already managed to destroy this target by securing more than $808,000.

Tools and building skills are very important in a child’s early development, so this is a great chance for them to showcase their intelligence at such a young age. Kano has provided people with a kit which they can build instruction-by-instruction, in order to create a fully functioning, good-looking computer.

The kit itself, consists of two instruction manuals, a custom case, a keyboard, a speaker, an 8GB SD card, a power plug, and HMDI and mini-USB cables. The computing module is powered by Raspberry PI and actually began life as a book just last year.

The build-it-yourself computer kit has been designed to be easy to follow for people of any age and is expected to be available for shipping next year. The kit is moderately inexpensive too, and at just $119, it is a great chance for children to learn some really important skills.

Making the computer doesn’t mean that is the end to the building process though, once you fire it up and start exploring its features you will find that you can build games too. You can make games like Pong and Snake and you can edit the rules too, this is where the newly learnt coding skills might come into play.

Even though buyers are going to have to wait until 2014 until they can get their hands on this kit, you can reserve your kit now. Over 7,200 people have already backed the project, but you can still fund the project all the way until the 19th of December if you’re interested.

Friday, 22 November 2013

What's On Your Christmas Wish List?

As we near the end of November, everyone will start to think of ideas to put at the top of their wish list or what they are going to buy for their nearest and dearest.

But, what will it be?

It is predicted that at the top of most people’s lists this year will be tablets and smartphones, which is great news for us because it means we can talk about it a bit more. It’s hardly surprising that gadgets are the in-thing this year, with so much available and so many impressive features, who wouldn’t want the latest smartphone or tablet.

We have made some predictions of what we think are going to be the top dogs when it comes to technology sales this year. The top 3, in no particular order, include:

  1. Microsoft Surface 2 – Microsoft really have hit the sweet spot this year with their new tablet. It’s quick, it’s easy and it’s practical and will undoubtedly be the top of many peoples list. With smooth additions like the new Type 2 keyboard (available in a number of colours) it is turning into a must-have tablet, not just for Christmas, but for every day.
  2. Apple iPad Air – Another tablet, but Apple has created a beautiful piece of kit which offers a compact, lightweight yet powerful return on investment. Apple always do well around this time of year and it’s seems like they have the released the Air at the right time. 
  3. PlayStation 4 – Yeah, we know, it might not be a smartphone or a tablet but it almost written in the stars that Sony dominate the Christmas sales. Their new console is set to hit the shops and with it already being sold out virtually everywhere, it surely has to feature in this list. With games like Call of Duty, which is always a record-breaker around this time, the PS4 is a Christmas must-have too. Although, it will have to fight off competition from the new Xbox which has been released this week. 
  4. Apple iPhone 5S – Although many people might not be inclined to buy this handset outright for Christmas (it is pricey), its sales are still likely to skyrocket. With its recent release, people may still be wishing their pile of presents consists of the 5S, but they will have to wait and see if it is under their Christmas tree. 
  5. Christmas Apps – Admittedly, this isn’t a piece of technology as such, but for those that already have the latest technology before Christmas, you can download all sorts of Christmassy-type apps that can count down the days till the big day, track Santa on his quest around the word and a calendar that you can open every day for a little addictive game or coupon. 

There is still some time yet before Christmas, but it might be worth putting your orders in with Santa pretty sharpish before your wish list is all sold out.

Friday, 15 November 2013

Motorola Plays Catch Up

Motorola used to be at the forefront of mobile technology a few years ago, but recently it has found itself playing catch up.

With Motorola’s release of their new Moto G this week  Vice President of the company, Magnus Ahlqvist, has said that the company is looking to move in an ‘exciting new direction’.

The company has been nearly non-existent over the last 18 months but he has explained that customers can expect that to change. The release of their Moto G might just do that.

The Motorola G is the equivalent to the Nexus 7 but is the size of a smartphone. As we know, Motorola is being backed by Google, so why the phone has been released under the Motorola brand is a mystery, and one that we’re sure will be revealed soon.

It is a clever move by Google at the outset as now they have their toes dipped in laptops, tablets and smartphones, so are appealing to a much larger market. With Motorola lagging behind the scenes of technology for some 18 months or so, should we expect this smartphone to be the next thing to change the market?

Well, with it aiming at the mid-range of users and boasting a low-end price tag, it will definitely get smartphone users listening. The Moto G will be available in two storage sizes – one being 8GB and the other 16GB. The former will cost you around £135 and the larger storage device will cost just £25 more – so they’re very affordable in comparison to the likes of Apple and Samsung.

Although this device is priced as such, it is actually placed in a field of technology that it could quite well outshine the competition. It weighs just 143g, so it is lightweight and well balanced, which is a good start. The rear plate is rubberised too which fits comfortably into the palm of your hand; it’s water repellent too.

It boasts simplicity and efficiency all in the one handset and comes equipped with a 4.5 inch display, which is clear and crisp. The Moto G also comes fitted with the Android 4,3 Jelly Bean, well, until the Android 4.4 KitKat comes out that is. The camera is snappy too which is always a bonus, even if it doesn’t compliment the aesthetics.

Overall, this could be exciting times for Motorola and those looking to get a smartphone on a small budget.

Friday, 8 November 2013

Does the PC have a future?

It is common knowledge that tablets are on the rise and more and more technology giants are opting to produce more cutting edge products, but what does that mean to where it all started; the PC?

PC’s, less commonly known as personal computers, effectively began in 1977 with their clunky design and extremely slow functions.  They didn’t have such luxuries as the internet. Thirty-six years on and although PC’s have definitely improved, so has newer, more convenient technology like the tablet for example.

Tablets have sold like hotcakes and many companies like Apple, Sony and Acer are opting to divert more of their time and budget towards their tablet market rather than their traditional personal computers.  So where does that leave the future of the PC?

Well, many believe that PC’s are getting closer and closer to extinction, but in actual fact that’s not the case. Granted, the cheap and lower end PC models might be on the way out, but the higher end versions still have a lot more to give. In fact, the sales of NVIDIA’s high performance graphics are on the increase, as are the profits from PC game-producer EA. Growth is growth and surely this contradicts claims that this is a device on the decline?

The truth is, the PC is a very mature device and it’s too stubborn to just fade away in the tablets’ wake. Of course, many consumers are choosing to go walkabouts with their new tablets but there are still many people that stand by the PC and for good reason.

Sure, tablets are going to become better and stronger sieving out more and more of the competition but a good quality PC will still pack a stronger punch when it comes to performance for a little while longer yet.  PC’s on the whole might be on a long decline and tablets on a massive high, but that doesn’t mean that the PC is dead and buried.  Well, not for a good few years at least.

We would like to know what you think about the PC and its future, so share your thoughts and comments below. Do you think the future of the PC is in trouble or do you see PC’s fighting back?

Friday, 1 November 2013

Apple Are Producing Air

No, we don’t mean those clever guys at Apple are actually producing oxygen, instead we are talking about their newly released tablet; the iPad Air.

The Apple iPad Air is due to make an appearance on the shelves today in fact, and has been eagerly awaited by many lovers of all things techy. Apple introduced the iPad Air at a special event in San Francisco on October 22 and it is now available for you and me to buy, right now!

The Air is aiming to be the new champion of the large tablet market and it could quite well be the game changer. With its 9.7-inch retina display and lightweight design, it’s definitely one to give people food for thought when it comes to buying the next hottest tablet.

Although this new tablet looks very similar to the iPad mini, its shed much more weight and size in comparison and is even easier to carry around (if that was even possible). This new tablet is much more comfortable to hold than its chunkier siblings and the retina display is real winner. All of these features and the battery life isn’t sacrificed which is always a bonus. Ten hours of continuous usage and it still keeps on top of its tasks too.

The Air might be lightweight but it is definitely heavyweight in performance. Its camera gets an update, it has an improved sound quality, it’s faster, and it’s more responsive, it’s just so much better than anything before it.

The iPad Air has shown it’s a forward thinking device and is more than likely going to fly off the shelves in its first week or so. With a lot of stiff opposition including many from the Samsung range and the recently launched Microsoft Surface 2 (which we reviewed a couple of weeks back) to name a few, the iPad Air will have to prove its worth.

The new iPad Air will just have to sit tight and see how successful it is over the coming weeks in order to see if it will be the new champion of the tablets, all we know is it stands a pretty good chance.

Friday, 25 October 2013

The Fastest Growing App This Year

For every smart phone owner, apps have become a part of our everyday lives from an alarm clock waking us up before work through to an Angry Bird’s game that keeps us entertained on the train during the journey home.

There are millions of Apps available in Apple’s App Store and this is always on the increase, but with so many apps available, which one has been the fastest growing in 2013 so far?

Before we reveal all, we will go through a couple of the other top growers among users this year. For some people these will come as no surprise whatsoever but for others it could be quite surprising.

We will start with the app that sits in third position in terms of fastest growth this year and that is Instagram.  Instagram is an online photo-sharing, social network that also allows you to share videos, add filters to images and share your experiences with other social networks. It has been at the top of many peoples’ download lists since its launch in 2010 and this year it has seen massive growth.

In the silver medal position is image hosting and video hosting website, Flickr (pronounced flicker). In March of this year, it was reported that Flickr had around 87 million registered users and 3.5 million images are being uploaded daily, that ought to do it then! With such a huge user base, it’s no surprise that Flickr makes it into the second spot for the fastest growing app this year.

The quite aptly named winner is Vine, who likes its name suggests it has climbed to the top. Vine has been a massive hit since its launch in January this year. Unlike the other apps we have mentioned, Vine has grown a massive user base over a quick space of time. Vine is a mobile app owned by Twitter and it is the perfect place to create and post short video clips all under 10 seconds. Our winner has seen a 403% growth this year already, making it the fastest growing app of 2013.

As you can see, the top three fastest growing apps are all video and image sharing apps but the top ten include the likes of Facebook, YouTube, Skype and Foursquare, but they all missed out on the accolade this year. Who do you think will take the crown next year?

Friday, 18 October 2013

What You Need To Watch

When it comes to technology, there have been a lot of new introductions already this year but there is one product that has been on everyone’s agenda, a smart watch.

Smart watches have been one of the hot topics of the last few months and with Samsung announcing their Galaxy Gear, more technology bigwigs are starting to give us something to think about.

Rumours surrounding the Apple and Google headquarters are becoming louder and louder and we have already seen a number of concept ideas from the former.  In fact, only recently did we feature an article about Apple’s iWatch.

Google themselves are being closely watched too. When they bought Wimm, a maker of Android-based smart watches, back in September, many technology enthusiasts thought it was inevitable that the search-engine giants would be rolling out a new smart watch very soon.  Google actually look set to be the next tech giant to launch a smart watch following on from Samsung’s introduction.

According to reports surrounding this topic, the smart watch from Google will use many of the utilities that are commonly found in the Google Now software, which is an intelligent mobile digital assistant, so it could be a very useful watch indeed.

Samsung’s Galaxy Gear already has a 320 x 320 pixel Super AMOLED screen in 1.63-inch and a 1.9-megapixel camera installed too. It also boasts a 800MHz processor, 512MB of RAM and 4GB of storage, so it will take some serious technology from Google and Apple to knock it of its perch.

These three techno-wizards have a rivalry that far surpasses just watches though, as we all know, and they are constantly trying to out-do one another.  So Google and Apple, we’re sure, will be using the release of Samsung’s Galaxy Gear to their advantage in order to create a model of smart watch that is all singing, all dancing.

There are other smart watches available on the market already though, like Sony’s Smartwatch 2 and the Pebble Smartwatch, so we can fully expect to see more and more companies crawling from the woodwork and jumping on the bandwagon.

Friday, 11 October 2013

Are Apple's Paid Apps Dead?

If you buy paid apps, you will think ‘no’ and if you only purchase free apps, you will be thinking ‘yes’.  The truth is, paid apps have slowly declined since their first release when the App store was born but people do still pay money for their apps

App producers are finding it more difficult to make money on their paid apps, but many are resorting to in-app purchases.  Although many people are questioning whether paid apps are dead or not, the revenues made through apps on both the Apple’s App Store and Google Play are on the rise and have been all year.

Apple introduced in-app purchases to its App Store in 2009 alongside the release of its iOS 3.0 software. This has opened up a whole new source of revenue for developers.  The idea behind this was, instead of purchasing an app from the outset, developers could create a free-to-download app which can offer in-app purchases for added extras to the original gameplay, for example.

These are called ‘Freemium’ apps and have rapidly become the standard for many of the most successful apps and games within the App Store.  In fact, according to new statistics, in-app purchases within the U.S’s App Store make up 76 per cent of their whole revenue. Paid apps only make up just 5% of this revenue.

So, what is the future of app pricing, you ask? Good question. The main problem app developer’s face is that finding the perfect combination of impressive download numbers, high conversion rates and high prices can be difficult. An app like Candy Crush Sage though, ticks all of these boxes and does it well.

When considering an app or an idea, it is worth keeping on top of the latest trends like this to see which will be a good return on investment for you. Freemium apps might be the way to go in the interim but every App Store customer is different, so paid apps are a long way off becoming extinct.

We would like to know what you do when downloading apps. Do you buy fewer paid apps but always end up making in-app purchases, or are most of your apps paid for before downloading? Let us have your comments.

Friday, 4 October 2013

Microsoft Scratch The Surface, Again!

Yes, that’s right! Microsoft is looking to launch their next generation of tablets after unveiling them at a press conference in New York towards the latter part of last month.

Does this mean it is time for the Surface RT to move over? No, but the Surface Pro 2 and the Surface 2 are definitely looking to take the hot seat for a while.

The Surface 2 is much cheaper than the Surface RT and at £359 it’s an exciting prospect on price alone. But what you get for the money is what you really want to know. Well, it comes with an improved 1080p screen, but that isn’t all. You can also expect to see Microsoft Office already pre-loaded onto the tablet, as well as a faster processor.

The Microsoft Surface 2 seems to have come a long way since it’s younger brother, so Microsoft have learnt from their previous mistakes. The tablet is much sturdier when it is in your hand and this could quite well be due to the kickstand at the back adding another layer of sturdiness. Although the Surface 2 is one of the larger tablets on the market and is much sturdier, it still manages to keep the lightweight feel and is easily manageable in just the one hand.

The screens size, 10.6 inch, is great for practicality too, especially for those people looking for a practical tablet to take with them. Writers and those that work with spread sheets are definitely going to want one of these. The processor, like we mentioned earlier, has also been improved which means application switching is virtually effortless.

The Type Cover fits perfectly onto the tablet and is another improvement on the previous Surface model. Typing is quieter, more sensitive and has a lot more touch capabilities too. Being able to glide your fingers across this new keyboard-slash-cover means you can literally do anything at the touch of a button if you don’t want to use the screen.

We have no doubt that this new model from Microsoft with outshine any of their previous releases but will it out-do the iPad 4 and the Nexus 10 … We’re not quite sure yet. It definitely has a fighting chance though!

Friday, 27 September 2013

Amazon Look To Burn The Competition

With a lot of focus recently towards Apple and its new iPhone, we have decided to turn our attention to Amazon and what they have to offer – The new Kindle HDX.

We live in a very tablet-centric society at the moment and Amazon has upped their ante with regards to the Fire tablet we all know and love. They have introduced two new models, the 7-inch and the 8.9-inch and both come with a brand new, high-resolution screen that change their brightness in accordance to the ambient light.

That’s not all either, both come with a Snapdragon 800 quad-core processor at 2.2GHZ (better than a lot of laptops) and are 34 per cent lighter than their predecessors. Arguably the most successful Android tablets on the market, these powerhouses cram in both power and pixels, which is good for those of you who want to continue using the Kindle for your reading hobby.  In fact, they are also packed with a special reading mode to allow you to read on your new tablet for up to 17 hours. That’s a lot of reading!

The 8.9 inch Kindle HDX comes with a rear-facing camera too and has been installed with a small photo editing app, so you can tweak the brightness and contrast of your favourite snaps. Amazon has paid attention to its previous success with their Kindle’s though and the design has near enough stayed the same. The soft rubbery back still remains as does a very similar interface, so if you have had a previous model, you’ll fly round this one too.

One of the Kindle HDX’s key features that has been praised as one of its major selling points though is their ‘May Day Button’. This allows 24-7, 365-days-a-year technical support should you need it and also utilises a one-way video chat. Amazon’s CEO, Jeff Bezos, has also said that they are aiming to respond to requests in 15 seconds or less. Impressive!

If you want one though, you will have to wait just that little bit longer. The 7-inch model is available for pre-order but will not be shipped until October 18th. The 8.9-inch; November 14th.

What also might be good to know is the 7-inch will cost around £200 and the 8.9 inch will be under £350.

Friday, 20 September 2013

7 Top Tips For iOS7

So you've just installed the shiny new iOS7 but apart from the new look you're not sure what else it does. Or even worse you were used to the way something worked and now it's different. Well after answering a few questions (that were often the same) about it from our clients over the last day or so we decided to put a few top tips together.

1. New slide up/down panels
By sliding your finger down from the top of the screen the notification centre is opened. As well as just showing old (misssed) notifications this now includes the date, current weather, calendar, reminders, and stocks. This can now be done from the lock screen though can be disabled in settings.

Another new panel has also been added by swiping your finger up from the bottom of the screen too. This is called command centre and includes things you quickly want to change or specific Apps to quick launch. This includes things like flight mode, wireless on/off, brightness, volume, and timer, calculator, and some others.

2. Searching
In previous version of iOS you had a specific search screen to the left of the home screen. This is no longer there on iOS7 so how do you search? From any of the home screens if you swipe your finger down from the middle of the screen then the search box will appear at the top of the screen. Simple when you know how!

3. Flashlight Addition
Ever found yourself fumbling around in the dark and wishing you had a torch with you. Well with iOS7 you can use your phone as one! From the new command centre you can switch on the flashlight with a single press and use your phone's camera flash as a torch.

4. Email Changes/Improvements
If you're used to going to your inbox and swiping right across the message previous to delete that obvious spam message you may get a shock. It doesn't do anything now! But don't worry, if you swipe right to left instead of left to right then you can delete (trash) instantly or even reply, forward etc too using the more button.

Another massive improvement that has always been missing is the ability to "mark all". This is especially useful for people who have their email setup where they are seeing the same messages on their phone as their computer but these are showing as unread on the phone. Now you can just click "edit" and then use the new mark all as read function.

5. Closing running programs
Previously you could close down Apps that were running in the background by double clicking the home button and then holding your finger on the App icon and select delete. With iOS7 the double home button click is the same but then it shows a card of the App and the icons below. Now matter how long you keep your finger pressed the delete button won't appear! You now simply swipe the App card upwards off the screen and it's closed.

6. Blocking numbers
This will be a lifesaver for those of you that are always getting spam PPI claim phone calls! If you go into recent calls and click on the info icon then at the bottom of that screen you can "block this caller". This then blocks calls, messages, or FaceTime from that number/contact.

7. Photo Viewing
As well as the existing albums structure then if you use the "photos" tab then you can view your photo's by collections and moments. This cleverly splits up your photo's into headings of the place and times photo's were taken. So if you were on holiday for a week in Cornwall it would create a heading for this and have all your holiday photo's in there. This makes looking for that specific photo from an event so much easier than going through your whole camera roll!

We hope that these tips all help you get along with your fresh install of iOS7 and please feel free to add tips of your own in the comments section below.

How Much For That App?

Whilst browsing through recent reviews about the new iPhone and the release of the iOS 7 software, we came across an interesting infographic about apps.

The average price of an iPhone app is around $0.19 (12 pence) so we were surprised to see some of the pricey apps available on the App Store and thought they were worth a mention.

Top of the pile is VIP Black. This is the world’s first premium lifestyle app and is for those people that have an income above £1 million, which they must show proof of.  So, that rules a lot of us out even if we wanted to see what this app was about. Although, another thing that would rule many of us out is the price tag … $999.99 (£623). This is the highest amount of money that app developers can charge for an app on the App Store.

Another top-priced app is Agro, a functional App whose most common audience is Farmers. Tested by large organisations, this app is useful for storing client details pertaining to different chemicals, pests and crops. This app, along with VIP Black is optimised for the new iPhone 5, which is handy!

A little lower down the app chain is Preebs. This has been specially crafted to assist commuters on their daily drives or commutes. It makes full use of billboards during their journey by providing various types of outdoor advertising. Preebs, isn’t cheap either though, and will set you back nearly £500.

Next up is a football game, and no, it’s not made with gold footballers – instead it comes with high resolution graphics and animations that give you the ultimate playing experience and is named Barcelona vs Madrid. We would like to think that the game includes a few more teams than these two though. For this app, you can look to pay $349.99, or £220 for those in the UK, a lot dearer than FIFA.

So, these are little more expensive than Angry Birds, even if we think we would have more fun on Angry Birds. For those of you interested in these apps you will have to pay a hefty sum - they will cost you more than buying an iPhone outright. Pricey!

Friday, 13 September 2013

Apple's Double iPhone Day

Apple has announced not one, but two new additions to their already existing collection of technology.

September 10th saw Apple shed some light on its latest releases, with the iPhone 5S and the iPhone 5C being the main focus. The delivery date for the new iPhone 5S is September 20th, so we don’t have to wait too long to see it first hand, but we will have to wait a little longer for the iPhone 5C.

The iPhone 5C is available for pre-order though, and you can choose from a number of different colours too, which include Blue, Green, Yellow, Pink and White. There is not much difference from the iPhone 5 but you can expect to see improved software (iOS7), better FaceTime and much more support for your networks.

The iPhone 5S is also armed with the iOS7 software which was touched on during the media event earlier in the week. Better apps, a smoother user experience and a new look are all key features of the new iOS7 software and will accompany both new Apple additions.

If you are due an upgrade, this will be the first time you will have the choice of two iPhones, but if you’re looking to find which one is best, the answer is difficult. Both models are very similar but have their differences, which makes the decision all the more easier. If you are looking for an app power model and prefer more security features, the iPhone 5S is the choice for you, but if you love the iPhone but don’t like the huge price you have to pay for them, the 5C might be the better option for you. Truth is, both are pretty good so you won’t go far wrong with either.

The iPhone 5S has twice the processor performance which makes it the number one choice for those who search for smoother gaming and usage, although the apps that will actually use this performance won’t be in the App Store for some time yet.

The iPhone 5C is basically the iPhone 5 with better choice of casing and for a lower price. So, to reiterate … it is entirely your choice.  All we know, is we look forward to seeing them up closer when they are finally released.

A Flying Car We Can Buy

This is not something we normally talk about, but who are we to ignore an innovative piece of technology worth mentioning. In this case, it’s a flying car!

We’re not talking about a Harry Potter style vehicle or something out of the Jetsons, instead we are talking about the Terrafugia Vision.

This new vehicle is very close to becoming available to the general public but it has a few regulations and a couple of other hurdles away from being on the market for us to buy. We say us, but it will be available for those that are willing to shell out a mere $279,000. Yes, dollars! It won’t be available to us Brits for some time.

So what is the Terrafugia Vision? Well, like the title suggests, it’s a flying car. It has a cruising speed of 100 miles per hour in the air and its miles per gallon are estimated at around 35 when driving it on the road. This plane-cum-car can travel up to 410 miles, with a reserve tank that will give you an extra 30 minutes. So, it might not be ideal to go on long journeys but you can still get from A to B quite conveniently.

This new technological advance has been in progress since 2006 and has always been the dream of Carl Deitrich since he graduated from University with a Ph.D.

The only problem this great design might face, which is the same with a number of other light aircraft or little airplanes, is that when the weather is a bit too windy or wet, the car-plane might suffer from some problems. If the weather changes whilst in flight, you will be pretty much stuck, but don’t let that put you off, this is still a great bit of technology.

Although, if you are interested in having a Terrafugia Vision, you might need to consider your finances. The price tag of $279,000 means that people that are looking for a sports car may be interested, for us normal folk… not so much!

Friday, 6 September 2013

The Winners and Losers of Technology

We are often talking about new technology that is due to be released or a review of technology that has already hit the streets, but very rarely do we talk about what good or bad has come from it.

So, that is exactly what we are going to do. We will mention some winning technology and some, well, losers.

Let’s start with the winners:

•    Apple iPad – I’m sure many people already had this in their head’s when thinking about innovative technology that is a winner, but the Apple iPad has completely reshaped the use of computer technology. The ability to move with a computer more freely than a laptop, having your apps at your fingertips wherever you go and a great design means that the iPad is featured as one of the technology wins of our past time.

•    Nokia and the Windows Phone – Maybe not as influential as the iPad, but … and it’s a big but, without the gamble on its Windows Phone Nokia could quite have well been dead and buried, so for that, it’s a win in our eyes. This gamble has paid off, especially with the decline of Blackberry.

Talking of Blackberry, let’s turn to a couple of losers within the technology world:

•    Blackberry Playbook – Blackberry in general is on the decline like we mentioned, but the Playbook didn’t help matters. The Playbook was extremely rushed to get it onto the market and it didn’t turn out to be all we expected. In fact, it didn’t even have any email or calendar apps … not very convenient for a tablet. It didn’t help that it was outshone by the iPad.

•    3G – European operators have spent billions on their 3G licenses (£22.5 billion in the UK) and the idea at first was gold dust, but in reality, many of us still don’t get 3G today. So for that reason, it is a loser.
So, here we have a couple of examples for the winners and losers of technology in recent years. There is a whole bunch more but we might save that for another time when some new technology hits the street, like the Apple iWatch we mentioned last week.

Friday, 30 August 2013

Samsung's Galaxy Gear

The great smartwatch battle continues to loom on the horizon and one company that are looking to get things moving is Samsung.

We recently mentioned that Samsung were looking to release their wrist-based wearable’s which will coincide with their smartphones, so we thought it was only fair we gave them a full feature.

The South Korean tech giants are looking to launch this new watch at the end of September or start of October. A new rumour has been released saying that we might actually get to see the official release date as early as September 4th at the IFA 2013.

This release will complement the Galaxy Note 3, which is also due to be launched on the same day.

So, what can we expect from the Samsung Galaxy Gear you ask? Well, it’s wearable like a watch and is likely to come in up to five colours – white, orange, grey, black and, a week later, gold! Some of the previous designs also suggested that the screen may in fact be flexible too, but we will have to wait on that as Samsung have not confirmed these rumours. Sorry!

The screen itself is likely to be 2.5 inches in a square shaped face, boasting OLED display technology. Another feature which will make more sense to those technologically minded is that the Gear could feature a Exynos 4212 SoC along with 1GB of RAM.

The operating system that we believe is set to be on the device is Android, which would make sense seeing as this is the software that binds its Galaxy devices together. We expect that it will be fitted with 4.2 when it is eventually released.

This device is highly anticipated by many people, not just those that want to buy it, but those that are interested in technology. Sony released its Sony Smartwatch 2 in June of this year but that didn’t really cut it for many technology geeks, but we expect that Galaxy Gear will make some serious waves among the market.

If so, then we can look forward to Apple starting to get us excited about their iWatch which is due sometime next year. So, keep your eyes and ears open for the release of this one, it could be good!

Friday, 23 August 2013

Another Apple iWatch Concept Is Released

Apple has released another concept of its wearable wrist watch that is also a computer, named the iWatch.

A few posts ago we wrote about having your smartphone on your wrist and Apple has every intention of making this happen. We have seen a few concepts around the web but this one looks the sleekest yet.

It is smooth and incorporates what looks like the current iPhone into a white watch that futuristically bends the screen to create an exciting Apple product.

We shouldn’t get too excited though, we are told not to expect the final product to be launched until late in 2014 at the very earliest.  Fedrico Ciccarese, who has been responsible for a number of previous Apple product mock ups, has also designed this concept.

Apple are not the only company to announce that they are in the process of making a smartwatch though, Apple’s biggest rivals Samsung have announced that they will be releasing their smartwatch on September the 4th. So that is something to get excited about now. This is rumoured to be named the Galaxy Gear and will come with your Samsung mobile phone.

Sony has also already introduced a watch-style product to go with its smartphones, but the Samsung is going to be filled with much more technology and capability. You will be able to make phone calls, surf the internet and reply to your emails, all from one screen (which is smaller than their smartphones).

Both technology bigwigs have been busy as of late and there is no sign that that will stop anytime soon, with Apple likely to launch their new iPhone 5S later this year. We can expect a few more features and an overall improved model like we saw from the iPhone 4 to the 4S.

This improvement in software is only a fraction of what we can expect to see in Apple’s iWatch when it is finally released in late 2014, but until then we can only dream about what the final product will actually look like. All we know, is we will have to join the queue of people who will want one!

Friday, 16 August 2013

The New Windows 8.1 Launch Date Revealed

Microsoft has finally announced a date for their new 8.1 software to be launched…. in the US at least.

The United States can expect the new Windows 8.1 on October 17th of this year, which confirms a recent rumour that the release would be mid-month.

This update has been previously known as Windows Blue, but 8.1 will be available to all of the existing Windows 8 users for free. For those who aren’t an existing Windows 8 user, you will have to wait an extra day to buy it in a retail shop.

It has been a year since the Windows 8 software was released and now the software giants are back again, which might bring good news to many users. “Why?” you ask, because the Start button is making a return, even if it does take you straight to the Start screen instead of the Start menu.

The reason we know this is because Microsoft have released a preview version named quite simply, the Windows 8.1 Preview Release. Inventive isn’t it?

Windows 8.1 is not a whole new operating system and you shouldn’t expect to see the same jump from 7 to 8, but there are improvements, like the Start button for example. Microsoft has explained that this new software update will respond to a lot of customer feedback as well as adding new features and functionality. These will include advancement in the touch experience and the difference in mobile computing.

Another thing that we’re interested in is the apps and we can expect an improvement here too. Enhancement to the built-in apps like Mail and Xbox Music are likely as well as the introduction of new apps too, such as a new version of ‘Office’ and food and fitness apps which are always popular.

With this, the Windows Store is getting a new look, which is purposely designed to make it much easier for users to navigate to find new and interesting apps. The apps you do have will automatically install in the background too, making the whole experience effortless, which is always good news.

So, not too much longer for us to wait, although we will have to wait just a little longer than the US.

Friday, 9 August 2013

How Apps Sparked A Mobile Revolution

Let’s play a little game. Without looking on your smartphone or tablet, how many apps do you think you have on your phone? 

If you’re anything like us, you have probably lost count of how many you have downloaded, but our guess would be you quite a lot, especially if you count old ones you will have deleted as well as the current ones you have. 

Did you know that the average smartphone will have around 41 apps on their devices? It is also predicted that by the end of 2015, smartphone owners and technology enthusiasts will have in fact downloaded around 89 billion apps. Quite a staggering statistic, don’t you think?

We have mentioned previously how Apple’s AppStore has helped the app market rocket through the roof when it was first introduced in 2008. Since this date it has seen over 850,000 apps and a mere 50 billion downloads and these apps have included everything from games through to music-related apps and even health related apps. 

This introduction alone sparked many others to follow, including Google’s Play Store which we have also mentioned before. This app store has also given us a wealth of apps and is predicted to further improve our ‘app economy’. 

As apps continue to improve, so does our technology with a constant flow of new mobile devices, tablets and even glasses (Google Glass). Apps have become so much a part of our everyday life, we even use them to help us wake up in the morning, and now businesses are using them as a way to maintain their client base. In fact, many organisations are building their own internal enterprise app stores as a way to manage their corporate-sanctioned apps for the employees to use on their PC’s and mobile devices whilst at work too. 

It just goes to show exactly how far we have come in the app world since the first launch of Apple’s AppStore some five years ago. Although, we know that this has barely even scratched the surface of what we have to look forward to in the future. Apps have a long future ahead of them, and quite frankly we’re thrilled about it!

Friday, 2 August 2013

Android Tops The Tablet Table

Did you know that for every two tablets that are activated in the UK, one is an Android?

Well, it’s true. This statistic was revealed by Google, who also said that over the last year more than 85% of Android tablets have been activated. These activations were approaching a figure near 10 million towards the end of 2012, and as we begin August 2013 the statistic is nearer the 70 million mark.

In last week’s blog post we mentioned that the Android app store, Google Play, currently holds 1 million apps, which is just another statistic to add to the already impressive numbers.

Android isn’t just making huge movements with its tablets though; the software is also improving on its smartphone devices too. Just this week we found out that Microsoft Office is now joining the world’s No. 1 mobile platform.

Microsoft made huge waves earlier this year when it joined forces with the iPhone, but now it is turning its attention to Android which, as is shown by the previous statistics, is clearly a smart move. Unfortunately though, Office will only be available on Android phones, but we’re pretty sure it will only be a matter of time before it is available on tablets too.

The Office app is free to download but you must be subscribed to Office in order to run the actual programs (i.e. Word, Powerpoint and Excel). Once you have subscribed though, you are able to run the program on up to five different mobile devices; great if you have a different device for Monday to Friday. Still, it’s pretty useful for you and your friends or work colleagues. 

The news of Microsoft Office joining Android is bound to be welcomed by a number of people, especially business people who spend a lot of time traveling and students too. This news may have to be delayed to us guys in the UK though, as it is only available in the United States for now.

We expect Microsoft to release this app in dozens of other countries over the coming weeks including the UK, so we will have to wait just a little bit longer.

Friday, 26 July 2013

Welcome to the Google Show

Google has been dominating all the headlines over this past week and this time it’s for more than one reason.

First, the search engine super giant celebrated reaching 1 million apps within its Google play store, doubling last year’s tally, and in the same week has announced that they have sold out all of their initial orders of ‘Chromecast’ on the same store.

Let’s start with Google play reaching 1 million apps. Back in June of this year, Apple announced that it boasted more than 900,000 apps within its store and now Google has announced it has gone one better, reaching a million. These 1 million apps have collectively brought Google Play a huge 50 billion downloads.
What this does also mean is now Android is both the most popular smartphone platform worldwide, as well as having the most apps. Not a bad feat!

The head of Android and Chrome teams, Sundar Pichai, has said that this is a huge reflection of Android’s growth and strength on both smartphones and on tablets. He’s not wrong!

Then, to top a great week off for Google, they also announced that ‘Chromecast’ has sold out all initial orders on the Google Play store too. Chromecast is Google’s new media streaming accessory, enabling it’s users to bring their web content to the TV. This HDMI dongle also allows users to control this content through use of the apps on their phones and tablets. At $35 a pop, Google must be seeing ‘pound signs’.

If this all wasn’t enough, Google has also hinted that people will be able to rent and buy textbooks through Google Play too. All we know is it’s going to be one big store, and one successful one too. No pricing structure has announced for this as of yet, but if directed at student’s it will have a huge target market so we can expect to see quite a lot of discounted textbooks for the initial launch.

As you can see, it has been quite a successful couple of weeks for Google, but don’t for a minute expect that to be the end of their domination in the technological world.

Friday, 19 July 2013

Bend your Smartphone into a Smart Watch!

Yes, you heard it right. Samsung have been reported to be working on a new display for their smartphones that is made from plastic, meaning it can bend.

With the continual improvement of our gadgets, there are always strange ideas circling around the market and you can decide whether this idea will join them. Picture it now – you have finished your last phone call and instead of the traditional, popping your smartphone into your pocket scenario, you bend your phone onto your watch fitting.

It might sound a bit insane, but the concept has already been designed. A Designer from South Korea, Jeabyun Yeon, has showcased his concept of a bendable smartphone which can transform into a watch, fitting nicely onto your wrist. The concept is 6.1 millimetres thick with a 4.3 inch display, which can flex on to your wrist.

It has been given a name too – “Limbo”.

The South Korean designer, Yeon, has explained that the smartphone’s body could be made from a plastic and silicon hybrid-type material. The idea of “Limbo” may sound like an interesting concept that could appeal to some tech heads but how practical will it really be?

Many people like the feel of a watch on their wrist but a lot of other gadget users will always check the time on their phone instead of using a wrist watch. Combining the two could work but it will end up being bulky and you may get a whole host of people staring at you. Another thing to consider is, what with all of the gadgets you already have including a laptop, tablets, and music players, is the ‘Smart Watch’ another gadget that you want to carry around with you and charge when it runs out of battery?

It might also be worth mentioning that not only is Samsung working on a new flexible plastic screen instead of the usual glass, but so is Apple. The technology giants have been noted for working on their own form of flexible screens. So, it could well mean that we will all have flexible smartphones in the near future.

Friday, 12 July 2013

Apple's App Store Turns 5

This week has commemorated the fifth year of Apple’s App Store since its launch in 2008. Apple have decided to reward its customers by giving away apps from some of the most popular and highest rated games.

Since the App Store’s launch in 2008, which happened the day before the release of the iPhone 3G, Apple have continued to grow their ground-breaking App Store with over 50 billion apps being downloaded throughout this five year stretch.

CEO Tim Cook was staggered by this amount and did say that there has been nothing like the App Store that has existed, changing the world of technology. A big statement, but who are we to argue!

50 billion apps downloaded is a huge amount but this has been a huge benefit to the developers too. In fact, Tim Cook has said that Apple have paid out over $10 billion to the developers of these apps, who have received around 70% of all revenue made from them. This does actually mean that the App Store has clawed in revenue of around $14.3 billion since its launch, some five years ago.

Apple felt it is time they gave something back to the customer’s for all of their loyalty over these last five years and have done so by giving away apps and games all week. The five apps that the App Store has provided its customers include Barefoot Word Atlas, Day One, Over, Traktor DJ and How To Cook Everything.

The five games included Badland, Infinity Blade II, Where’s My Water? Tiny Wings and finally Superbrothers: Sword & Sorcery EP.  Nearly all of these games and apps have in fact been rated either four stars or higher (only one not being rated quite as high), which is great considering five stars is the highest rating possible.

Although the App Store is celebrating its fifth year anniversary, we are under no illusion that we can be looking at more celebrations over the coming years and who knows; we might even see the decade of the App Store. But for now, Happy Birthday App Store!

Friday, 5 July 2013

Instagram Introduces Video

Vine has already established itself as the top dog of video-sharing with friends, but with Instagram introducing video it seems Vine may have to rethink its strategy.

Instagram is hoping for a share of the spoils and has added a 15 second video share feature to its already impressive photography-sharing social network.  Compare this to Vine’s 6 second snippets, and Instagram might just be one step ahead.

They may have this in common, but there are a number of features they aren’t so similar on. Instagram has a more mass market type appeal, whereas Vine is very much channelled towards a niche, creative-focused market.

Instagram was acquired last year for a deal worth $1 billion and it was none other than Facebook who managed the scoop.  Originally starting as purely photo-sharing, this app has now advanced into video, which could see it becoming the next big thing in the social networking realm.

This newly provoked competition should get plenty of people excited though, as it does mean we could have a lot to look forward to.  With the two fighting against one another, we can expect a lot more to happen over the coming months and many more features to be announced.

The competition could be even deeper than just Vine and Instagram though as this move for Instagram could well mean an even fiercer fight between Facebook and Twitter.  What is for sure though, the introduction of video on Instagram will slow the growth of Vine to a certain extent, as many people considering joining it, will reconsider staying with Instagram for the same feature.

It is very unlikely that people will have an account with every single social network especially when they can get the same features all in one app.  It is common for people to become fond of just one social network and to devote most of their time to that app, instead of using four or more.

Another certainty is that time will tell.  We will see a conclusion over the coming months as to which app will be at the top of the chain.  Although, until that time comes, there is plenty of video’s, both on Vine and Instagram, to wade through in order to make up our own mind.

Friday, 28 June 2013

Android 5.0 - Key Lime Pie

Reading the title you may have thought you were going to read some type of recipe, unfortunately you’re not. Instead, Key Lime Pie is a codename that actually refers to the new Android 5.0 software development which is underway right now.

Those clever tech-heads over at Google have continually produced new software for their smartphones and tablets year after year and it’s not long until their newest release is due. The Android 5.0 is next in line to impress us and although there has not been an official released date as of yet, we can’t help but be interested.

There are so many rumours circulating the internet, so we are going to put a list together of some of the expected features we can hope for.

Earlier this year, we found out that Google is working with the Linux 3.8 kernel, so it is likely that this kernel could make it into the Android 5.0.  For those that are not sure what this means, in simpler terms, it means that we would be getting a much snappier phone and improved multitasking.

Another feature we could look forward to is Google Babel.  Babel was used by Google to explain their cross-platform service and app, with the aim of collectively combining their various chat services.  These include the likes of Talk, Voice, Messenger, Hangout, Chat on Google+ and Chat for Google Drive too.  A fairly credible Android source announced that Google Babel will be supported in devices running the Android 2.3 software and above, and on the 15th May this is what happened.  Although we thought it may be debuted on the Key Lime Pie, it will more than likely be a feature.

Although pure speculation, there have been many Tech Geeks requesting new features to be included.  Some wishing for a brighter interface compared to the latest 4.0 version, whereas many have been urging a bigger and better performance profile.  For example, a gaming mode for maximum power delivery or a minimal power mode for when we read.

Other requests include a better social networking support system and better apps (i.e. Video Chat app).  One thing is for sure though, we still have to wait a little longer to find out what we will get with the new Android 5.0.

Friday, 21 June 2013

Find funding for Apps

There are a lot of people with brilliant ideas, but they just don’t have enough money to fund them. This is the same with creating apps.

Hours and hours can be put into the development and the promotion of the idea, or app in this instance, with virtually no return on investment. This is why finding funding can be a great way to reduce the risk of any loses of time and money.

If you have launched an app before then you know exactly what happens from idea to final product, but for those people who only have an idea, where do you start? Funding!

Funding an app does not directly mean that you need every single penny to both develop and promote your app, but you may need to get some help financially to fund a part of it. By funding your app you can even get early feedback and gauge interest from people who have knowledge about apps. They may even be able to tell you about an app that already exists and is virtually your idea, so you don’t put all of your time into an app that already exists.

With this, the more people you know or have in your network, the more people you will be able to reach out to. There are a number of places, perfect for those people who have an idea, to find other people interested in funding their app. These platforms work in a similar way but all go about it in a different way. For example, KickStarter helps to fund creative ideas by simply setting a goal to reach and it is all or nothing.

A similar platform to KickStarter is Indiegogo. The only difference is you get to choose the way it is funded in the sense that there are two ways, flexible funding and fixed funding. Flexible funding means that you get to keep any funds you raise by a certain date, whereas fixed funding means it is all or nothing, similar to KickStarter.

There are other platforms too including AppBackr, AppStori (US Residents only) and AppsFunder. These also have their own differences but ultimately, they all help you to get your idea on its way to becoming a fully functional app; which is perfect for people who can’t afford to put the time and money into it themselves.

Friday, 14 June 2013

Apple fight back with iOS 7

With competition continually improving, Apple knew it was time for a big change and that is exactly what you get with the new iOS 7.

With the likes of Android 4.2 providing a number of new features and the Samsung Galaxy S4 recently hitting the shelves, it was time that Apple gave smartphone users something to get excited about.  So, we give you the iOS 7!

Apple made the announcement just a few days ago, so what better time to talk about it than right now. And why not? We’re excited about it just as much as the next person.

So, what can we expect with this new iOS 7? Well, we can expect cleaner, more streamlined software compared to the previous iOS 6, all thanks to Jony Ive, the person responsible for Apple’s hardware designs. This much more modern operating system is going to be a hugely improved version and one that will definitely rival any other smartphone lying in its wake.

Apple has also told us that there will be a whole host of other new features for us to get excited about. One of these features includes the Control Center, which makes the things we need most often like turning the Wi-Fi on, or adjusting the screen’s brightness, even more convenient with a simple swipe.

Another keen focus from Apple is multitasking. This has always been a great way of switching from one app to another. Well now, Apple has made it even better! If you regularly check your favourite social app at a certain time, say midday for example, this new multitasking intelligence will already have your feed waiting for you at this time so you can quickly check what’s going on in the world. Pretty cool huh?

Even the camera has become more convenient. Life is full to the brim of special moments and Apple has made sure that you capture them instantly by also being only a swipe away. The newly installed filters also allow users to get the most out of each image too with a chance to edit any picture, anywhere.

All in all, Apple seem to have this new software completely nailed and although a lot has changed, we fully expect that it will feel like we have never known any other way of using our smartphones.

Friday, 7 June 2013

Wikipedia is now 'Nearby'

Wikipedia has often been ‘the go-to website’ when you want to find out some information about a certain place, a celebrity or maybe even a film, but now they have d├ębuted a new feature.

This new feature is called ‘Nearby’ and its main function is to recommend articles dependant on the user’s location. ‘Nearby’s’ main intention is to educate its user’s about their current surroundings.

For example, people visiting Vatican City will find articles about the Sistine Chapel and Michelangelo’s fresco depicting The Last Judgment. This means that when you want to find articles related to your nearby location, you can simply find interesting things on your smartphone.

Not only will this new page from Wikipedia encourage people to find out about local stuff, but it also means that smartphone users can use their mobile device to take snaps for those articles that are missing an illustration. Wikipedia have said that they are looking out for active people to send in their photographs too.

In essence, it means that people will be inclined, and more likely to, take photographs of things that are local to them. If you take an image and see one of the nearby locative articles with an ‘Add an image to this article’ button, then all you have to do is upload your image and improve the information for other users. Although, it is worth mentioning that you can only do this if you are actually logged in.

Another thing that will be worth thinking about is location to location may vary in terms of the amount of articles available. By this we mean, London for example will have a lot more articles than say, the middle of the country. This, of course, is down to simple geography, the size of London compared to other cities and the fact London has a lot more going on in the city.

Although ‘Nearby’ is actually designed specifically for smartphone users, you can still access it from your computer. It is more likely to be used via a mobile device when people are out and about though, but it is still useful to know about when you are sat at home and interested in local articles.