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That iPhone 5 appeal (or, confessions of a swayed Galaxy S III owner)

I’m an Android user. I love my Samsung Galaxy S III. So why am I punching my details into the iPhone 5 reservation site every day? For the past week or so I’ve been using a borrowed iPhone 5, tracking how it holds up – and where it falls short – to the Android experience I’ve grown accustomed to. During that time I’ve been frustrated by Maps, impressed by the camera, and generally had my expectations of iOS shaken up some. It’s always good to mix up the status-quo every so often, too, and along the way remember that there’s more than one way to skin a metaphorical cellular cat.

Vincent’s already comprehensively reviewed the iPhone 5, so I won’t retread old ground where it’s not necessary. Suffice to say, the general reviewer consensus is that it’s the best iPhone to-date, and Apple’s announced sales figures certainly suggest that the buying public agrees.

As I’ve said before, I split my geek life mainly between Android and Apple. I use a MacBook and I have a new iPad, but I also use a Nexus 7 and my regular phone is a Galaxy S III. I love OS X for its simplicity (and I love the new Retina MacBook Pro for its build quality, excellent display, and design) but I’ve had mixed results with iOS. The limits on things like inter-app sharing are a frustration in comparison to Android, and Apple’s comparatively locked down ecosystem overall – though making for a very consistent user-experience – have left me feeling more at home with Google’s platform.

[aquote]The 4-inch screen instantly feels correct[/aquote]

Even though it’s been stretched out in comparison to its predecessors, the 4-inch screen and the longer form-factor instantly feel correct. The old iPhone looks squat and blunted in comparison now. It’s not just an aesthetic boon, though, and flipping between the iPhone 5 and the Galaxy S III, I was struck by just how large and, occasionally, unwieldy the Samsung’s sizable screen is. Conversely, there were times where I was browsing, and the iPhone 5 still felt cramped when viewing full sites where the same content looked bright, readable, and bold on the Galaxy S III.

Still, iOS 6 isn’t all good. The “over 200 new features” Apple has touted of the latest release is an eye-catching figure, certainly, but in practice it’s tough to identify more than a couple of changes over previous versions. Some of those, like the switch from Google Maps to Apple’s version, are effectively a step backwards, too. The learning curve for existing users is small, then, for the iPhone 5, but the platform is also beginning to feel tired and maybe even stagnant. Why can I share photos via email or Twitter from the gallery, but not Google+? Why is there no “new email” notification when the phone is locked, despite most other apps getting the opportunity to slot alerts onto the lockscreen? Why, if even Apple admits that Maps isn’t ideal, can I not set a third-party alternative as the default for opening addresses?

iOS helped pave the way for a more user-friendly breed of mobile devices, but in many ways Android and Windows Phone have surpassed it in imagination. Part of that might be Apple’s reluctance to leave anybody behind along the way: as Jony Ive said of the iPhone 5 design changes, Apple didn’t want to evolve the appearance of the smartphone simply for the sake of doing so. There’s certainly something to be said for familiarity and sticking with what works, but there’s a faint whiff of laziness around Apple’s approach: a sense of “why do too much when people will buy it in droves anyway.”

Maybe that’s unduly cynical, and what new features do stand-out are generally solid. The panoramic photo system may not be the first such example in a smartphone, but the quality of the final shots is highly impressive. Put Siri – finally becoming of some use outside of the US with the recent functional additions – next to Samsung’s S Voice and the clunkiness of the Galaxy S III’s system is obvious. I’ve not had a chance to try LTE – I was using Vodafone’s network, still on 3G here in the UK as there’s no commercial 4G service to be had – but battery life proved impressively lengthy.

Maps, then, is the fly in the ointment, and though US-based reviewers have had less of a struggle, outside of the US the situation seems considerably worse. Dodgy data is only part of it, though; Apple may have added turn-by-turn navigation, and I can do without Street View, but the absence of public transport directions is, for a city-dweller without a car like myself, a deal-breaker. I’m not the only one, either. Over the past week I’ve spoken to confused tourists and frustrated cab drivers, none of whom have been particularly impressed with Apple’s own mapping tool.

[aquote]Apple has the opportunity to do something interesting in the location space[/aquote]

Maps will undoubtedly improve – and I do believe that Apple has the opportunity to do something genuinely interesting in the location space, though a combination of gamification and crowdsourcing, and in the process refine its data considerably – but it will have left a lot of users with burnt fingers and lingering suspicions of the native app. Those days I didn’t double up and bring the Samsung with me too, I relied on the excellent Nokia Maps in the browser (with a homescreen shortcut so as to pretend as much as possible that it was a native app).

So why am I considering buying an iPhone 5? Put simply, it’s faults can be addressed with software tweaks – invisibly on the server-side, in the case of Maps, so that for users the experience simply gets better – and its strengths, such as build quality, design, camera capabilities, and battery life, are all undeniable. Plus there’s a whole lot to be said for phones with top-spec components but with more mid-scale displays: 4-inches is a sweet spot that’s overlooked by rival flagships, and usually if you want a handset of a similar size, you have to make do with lower resolution screen hardware, underwhelming specifications, or mediocre aesthetics. Huge displays are eye-catching, certainly, and they do make things like browsing far more immersive, but they come with compromises too.

Question is, will I be carrying the iPhone 5 alone, or will it have to share my attentions with the Galaxy S III? The likelihood is that I’ll be relying on two devices; I’m also considering pairing iPhone 5 and the Nexus 7, though even at 7-inches the Google tablet is less than ideal for bag-less travel. So, two phones it is; that makes me an outlier, yes, but that I’d even consider it having been so satisfied with Android until now is evidence of the step forward the iPhone 5 has taken. It’s not perfect, but it does enough – and well enough – to finally earn a place in my pocket.

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Samsung Galaxy S Iii: 15 Power User Tips

It’s no secret that the Samsung Galaxy S III is the must-have phone this summer. After all, this high-end Android phone has won over reviewers and consumers alike, selling more than 10 million units in less than two months on the market. PCWorld gave it 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Much of the hype surrounding the Galaxy S III is well deserved?the phone comes packed with cool features, including its voice controls, gesture controls, and multimedia-sharing tools.

Calls made easier

The Samsung Galaxy S III supports smart gestures.

Dialing phone numbers or even tapping a contact’s name to place a call? That’s so 2011. The Galaxy S III’s motion controls allow you to place a call simply by moving your phone to your ear when you’re viewing a contact or a text message.

The phone’s voice controls also allow you to answer and reject calls by voice. And if you really feel the need to touch the screen, you’ll be happy to know that the Galaxy S III speeds up this process, too: When you’re viewing a contact, you swipe left to send a text and swipe right to initiate a call.

If you’re not a Galaxy S III user, but you’re still hankering to try out motion controls, you’re not out of luck: Super Missed Call is a free (ad-supported) Android app that lets you place and reject calls by moving your phone.

Steady that snapshot

Apple has made a big deal about the Siri voice-control features included in the iPhone 4S.

Anyone who’s captured an off-kilter shot caused by tapping and accidentally moving a touchscreen will appreciate this voice control as a way to steady a shot, and it can be used to snap self-portraits, too.

Anxious to try voice controls on your Android device’s camera? Download Voice Remote Control Camera from Google Play.

Know who’s calling, silently

Customized ringtones make it easy to know who’s calling without a glance at your phone, but they work only when you’re able to keep your phone’s ringer on.

Looking to get this capability on your own Android phone? Head to Google Play and download Contact Vibrate or ViBe.

Wake up in style

Let’s face it: We all have to get out of bed sometime. And what better way to face your day than to be prepared for all it has to offer.

Using the “Briefing” setting on your Galaxy S III’s alarm clock, you can have your phone wake you by reading the time, weather and weather forecast, news headlines, and any appointments you may have lined up. To turn this feature on, go to alarm type in the settings menu and change it to briefing.

Not a Galaxy S III owner? Download WakeVoice ($2.99) from Google Play to get some of these features on your Android phone.

Hear your calls, crystal clear

No cell phone is going to offer perfect sound quality, but you can improve the Galaxy S III’s call quality by customizing it to your needs.

Get the whole picture

Don’t miss out on those big, scenic shots: Capture the entire thing using the Galaxy S III’s panoramic mode.

The Galaxy S III’s panoramic mode.

When you’re in the camera, just switch your shooting mode to panorama,and you can pan across some gorgeous scenery as the Galaxy S III goes to work, snapping the photos you need and stitching them together to make a panoramic image.

Want to get this functionality on your Android phone? Try out Photaf Panorama (free) or Pano ($3.06), both available in Google Play.

Next: Video, web browsing, location, volume tips and more.

Samsung Galaxy S Plus Gt


Warranty may be void of your device if you follow the procedures given on this page.

You only are responsible for your device. We won’t be liable if any damage occurs to your device and/or its components.


Before you begin with guide instructions below, make sure your android device is adequately charged — at least 50% battery of the device.


To make sure your device is eligible with this, you must first confirm its model no. in ‘About device’ option under Settings. Another way to confirm model no. is by looking for it on the packaging box of your device. It must be GT-I9001!

Do not use the procedures discussed here on any other variant of Galaxy S Plus or any other device of Samsung or any other company. You have been warned!


Back up important data and stuff before you start playing around here as there are chances you might lose your apps and app-data (app settings, game progress, etc.), and in rare case, files on the internal memory, too.

For help on Backup and Restore, check out our exclusive page on that linked right below.



You must have proper and working driver installed on your windows computer to be able to successfully flash PhilZ Touch Recovery on your Samsung Galaxy S Plus. In case you’re not sure, follow the link below for a definitive guide for installing driver for your Galaxy S Plus on your computer.



Download the Odin zip file and PhilZ chúng tôi file given below. Transfer both Odin and recovery tar file to a separate folder on your computer just to keep things tidy.


For latest version of the ROM, check the original chúng tôi page →


Important Note: Backup important files stored on internal SD card of your device, so that in case a situation arises requiring you to do a factory reset after flashing PhilZ Touch Recovery, which might delete internal sd card too, your files will remain safe on PC.

Extract/Unzip the Odin zip file, Latest Odin3 on your computer (using 7-zip free software, preferably) to get this file: Odin3 v3.09.exe

Move the PhilZ file, philz_touch_6.12.8-ariesve.tar.md5, in the same folder in which you extracted Latest Odin3 (Just for your convenience, that is). So, now you’ll have the following files in that folder:

Odin3 v3.09.exe


Disconnect the Galaxy S Plus from PC if it is connected.

Boot your Samsung Galaxy S Plus into Download Mode: (The image below of Galaxy S2 will help)

Power off your phone first and wait for 6-7 seconds after display is off

Press and hold these 3 buttons together until you see Warning! screen: Volume Down + Power + Home

If you don’t get the Added! message, here are some troubleshooting tips:

Make sure you have installed driver for Galaxy S Plus as said above.

If you have already installed driver, then uninstall them and reinstall back.

Connect using a different USB port on your PC.

Try a different USB cable. The original cable that came with your phone should work best, if not, try any other cable that’s new and of good quality.

Reboot phone and PC and then try again.

Load the recovery file (Step 2) into Odin as instructed below:

Now in the Option section of Odin, make sure that Re-Partition box is unchecked. (Auto Reboot and F. Reset Time boxes remain checked, while all other boxes remain unchecked.)

Double check the above two steps.

PhilZ Touch Recovery has installed successfully on your S Plus. To boot your Galaxy S Plus into Recovery Mode:

Power off your phone first and wait for 6-7 seconds after display is off.

Press and hold these 3 buttons together: Volume Up + Power + Home.

If you see FAIL message instead of the PASS in Odin’s top left box, that’s a problem. Try this now: disconnect your Galaxy S Plus from PC, close Odin, remove phone’s battery and put it back inside in 3-4 seconds, open Odin and then repeat from Step 5 of this guide again.

Also, If device is Stuck at setup connection or on any other process, then too, try this: disconnect your S Plus from PC, close Odin, remove phone’s battery and put it back inside in 3-4 seconds, open Odin and then repeat from Step 5 of this guide again.


Your suggestions and queries, if any, are most welcomed!

5 Helpful Iphone Tips That Can Make A Big Difference In Usability

The iPhone is easily one of the best gadgets ever made, but it’s not perfect, and there are a few things that are just kind of annoying. We’re aiming to address a few of those frustrations here, with these five fairly minor iPhone tips that can have a big impact, offering nice improvements to usability with a few things that can generally be frustrating or bothersome. Aimed at covering a broad range of things, from skipping past commercials in podcasts, a subtle gesture for Calculator that improves usability, fixing your knowledge gaps with Siri, to snapping photos in silence, and improving the readability of an iPhone outside in the bright sun, you’re sure to find something helpful.

1: Skip Commercials in Podcasts

Annoyed with the same ole commercials running in the middle of your favorite podcasts? Hit that little “15” forward skip button a few times, and you’ll scoot on through the commercial and be back to your show in no time. For most podcasts, two to four taps on that button are enough to get through their commercials quickly.

Obviously the Skip button is intended to just fast forward and rewind through playing podcasts, but it doubles as the most efficient way to skip past boring segments, annoying bumper music, or the repetitive commercials that you’ve heard over and over again (sorry Neil!).

2: Delete One Number at a Time in Calculator App

Make a typo when entering something in the Calculator app? Don’t hit the Clear C button and delete everything in the number bar, instead rely on an little-known swipe gesture to delete the last character one number at a time. This is done with a swipe right on the numbers. Keep swiping right and you’ll continue to remove numbers one by one from the number bar:

I stumbled on this one at iDownloadBlog during tax season and it saved a few headaches when figuring out expenses. It’s a great little trick, give it a try.

Oh and a bonus tip of sorts for those that were wondering about the screenshot shown, you can transform the normal Calculator app into a scientific calculator as displayed above just by rotating the iPhone horizontally to reveal the additional buttons and operations.

3: Be the King of Knowledge & Dominate Trivia Night with Siri

This goes beyond the million and one general Siri uses to function as a personal assistant, from creating reminders to sending text message and emails for you, or anything else in the gigantic command list. Live in the future and offload your own knowledge gaps to the cloud wonder of Siri.

4: Use the iPhone Outdoors in Direct Sunlight

Let’s face it, using any screens outdoors in the bright sun can be tough, and it can be very hard to see or read details on the display. The iPhone and iPad are no exceptions here, and anything with a glass screen is usually worse because of the reflections cast. But there are two simple tricks you can do to improve the experience and make the screen as readable as possible in bright natural lighting:

Be your own sun shield: Turn your back to the sun and use your own shadow to shield the screen from the sun. This reduces glare and makes the screen infinitely more usable

Yes, the iPhone and iPad will automatically adjust brightness, but it’s not always adequate when in very bright light or in direct sunlight. Speaking of auto-adjustments, you might want to turn off auto-brightness entirely if you find it going in the wrong direction in particularly tricky lighting situations. Just keep in mind that if you turn off the auto adjustments and leave the iPhone’s screen brightness all the way up the battery will run out significantly faster.

5: Snap Pictures in Silence

That tinny cheesy camera sound effect is something all iPhone users are familiar with, and if you’re tired of hearing it there is good news. The mute switch on the side of your iPhone will obviously mute calls and sounds, but it has a benefit for photographers too: it also turns off the shutter sound, letting you take pictures in silence. All you need to do is toggle the mute switch on, which reveals a little red line in the button to indicate so. Switch it back when you’re finished.

This is great to use in quiet places like libraries if you’re snapping pictures of books or documents, or even at events where you want to shoot a few pictures a bit more discretely than announcing it to the world with the treble-full camera shutter audio.

Note that in some countries this setting adjustment apparently makes no difference, due to particular regulatory requirements that require all cameras to make sounds. If you’re in one of those regions, you’ll have to cover up the output speaker yourself with a finger or go another approach by digging into the iOS filesystem and remove the actual audio file.

Got a helpful tip or two you want to share with us? We’re on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or send us an email


Install Android 4.2 On Galaxy S I9000

We saw an extremely early port of Android 4.2 come out for the original Galaxy S, the original Galaxy smartphone that put Samsung on the path to their current success, and now XDA Recognized Developer pawitp, the man behind the CyanogenMod ROMs for the Galaxy S, has released an almost fully working AOSP Android 4.2 ROM, with every major thing working.

Android 4.2 brings quite a few new features that have been talked about a lot, such as a new keyboard with inbuilt Gesture Typing (Swype-like typing), Photo Sphere mode in the camera for 360 degrees panorama photos, Daydreams screensaver mode for displaying pictures and other info when the device is charging, lockscreen widgets, Quick Settings toggles in the status bar, and general performance and stability improvements.

If you’ve been itching to try out the latest version of Android on your Galaxy S, you can follow our step-by-step guide to install the Android 4.2 ROM by pawitp. Keep in mind that this is an unofficial ROM that may have some issues, and no Samsung-specific features will be available as it is a ROM built from stock Android sources.

Let’s take a look at how the Android 4.2 ROM can be installed on the Galaxy S.


The procedure described below is only for the Samsung Galaxy S, model number i9000. Do not try it on any other device.


The methods and procedures discussed here are considered risky, so try them out at your own risk, and make sure to read each step carefully before attempting anything. We will not be held responsible if anything goes wrong.

How to Install AOSP Android 4.2 ROM on Galaxy S i9000

NOTE: If you are already running an Android 4.0 or 4.1 on your phone, you can skip steps 3 and 4.

Remove sim card lock, if you have set it earlier. Go here: Settings » Location and Security » Sim card lock » checkbox should be clear (not selected).

Flash the stock XXJW4 firmware by using → this guide.

Root XXJW4 to obtain Clockworkmod recovery (CWM) by using → this guide.

Download the latest build of the ROM from the source page.

Copy both the ROM and Google apps files (copy the files, don’t extract them) to the internal storage on the phone.

Turn off your Galaxy S and wait for complete shutdown (wait for vibration and check capacitive button lights).

In recovery, use Volume keys to scroll up and down and power key to select an option.

Select wipe data/factory reset, then select Yes on next screen to confirm. Wait a while till the data wipe is complete (this will only wipe installed apps and settings, but will not wipe files on the SD card).

Select install zip from sdcard, then select choose zip from sdcard. Scroll to the ROM file and select it. Confirm installation on the next screen.

The phone may reboot once during installation, then continue installing the ROM automatically. If it doesn’t resume and just boots into ClockworkMod recovery, repeat step 11 to install the ROM again.

After ROM installation completes, select choose zip from sdcard again, then select the file to install the Google apps package.

Once the installation of the Google apps package is complete, go back to the main recovery menu and select reboot system now to reboot the phone and boot up into Android 4.2. The first boot can take a few minutes, so don’t panic if it takes 5-7 minutes to do so.

Going back to stock ROM: To go back to a stock Samsung ROM again, you can flash the XXJW4 firmware by following the guide linked in step 3 above.

The Android 4.2 Jelly Bean ROM is now up and running on your Galaxy S. Put it through its paces, and see how it works, and do let us know if you run into any problems while installing it. Enjoy!

Top 5 Iphone 14 “Innovations” That Apple Copied From Android

There have been a couple of negative reviews because the iPhone 14 series do not come with many upgrades. However, the Pro models come with some features that attract some attention. In addition to the 48-megapixel lens, it comes with a smart island design. This was originally the slot of Apple’s pill screen. It has become a new function, which has caused heated discussions on the whole network. However, these new functions on the iPhone 14 series are not the first. The so-called new functions, including Smart Island, have been played by Android manufacturers such as Huawei and LG. Android Central believes that at least 5 functions on the iPhone 14 series are plagiarized. Well, if we want to put it on a lighter note, we will say that these iPhone 14 functions draw inspiration from Android manufacturers.

Five Android-inspired features on the iPhone 14 series 1. Smart Island: LG V10 has it

The Smart Island may be the most attractive feature of the iPhone 14 series. In order to increase the appeal of the Pro series, Apple even only opened it to the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max models. However, if you think that Apple has brought some innovation, then you are thinking wrong. The feature was already available on the LG V10 mobile phone. The company has also implemented a similar feature on another LG smartphone. Also, LG’s previous UI design is similar to Smart Island

PS: In fact, Chinese manufacturers have also done interactive designs using the notch area, such as Vivo’s OrginOS system.

2. Punch-hole selfie lens: Huawei nova4 takes the crown Gizchina News of the week 3. Always on Display

Another feature that is quite old and has been on Android is the Always-On-Display (AOD). Just like the Smart Island, Apple also reserves this feature for the iPhone 14 Pro series. This means that Apple considers it a top feature. However, it is important to note that Apple is not the innovator of this feature. So, if Apple did not innovate it, who did? Well, Apple’s arc-rival, Samsung is the first company to make the AOD always-on function.

4. Dynamic refresh rate

Apple iPhones have supported dynamic refresh rates since the iPhone 13 series. The company also introduced the ProMotion function, which is still an exclusive function of the Pro series. The minimum refresh rate of the previous generation was 24Hz. However, the new iPhone 14 series can achieve a minimum of 1Hz, mainly with AOD always-on display. However, the 1Hz ultra-low refresh rate is not new among Android manufacturers. This feature dates back many years for Android manufacturers and the likes of the OnePlus 9 Pro and Find X3 Pro has long provided similar functions.

5. Apple Crash Detection

In a video description, Apple said the “iPhone 14 Pro comes with Crash Detection, a vital new safety feature that can detect a severe car crash and automatically call for help, even when you can’t,”..”Add this to the new 48MP Pro camera and a totally reimagined display, and iPhone 14 Pro redefines what a smartphone can do. Again.”

The car crash detection function is not only supported by the iPhone 14 series, but also a key function of the Apple Watch 8 series. However, this feature is not an innovation of Apple. Google’s Pixel 6 series mobile phones have long supported it. In fact, there are signs that Google will provide such a function in the Android system in the future.


These wouldn’t have been a topic of discussion but considering that Apple claims so much glory for these features, it is important to reveal some information. Many Apple fans believe that the original version of a feature is available when Apple releases it. For them, it doesn’t matter who used it first, if Apple is five years late, Apple is the “innovator” for the feature. However, this is only a fanboy point of view and no tech enthusiast has such ideas. Apple is not an innovative company, after all, it appears that its years of innovation are long gone. The company now looks at what Android manufacturers do and makes some changes. In time past, this was not the pattern of Apple.

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