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Android

  • Android Lollipop’s ‘on-body detection’ smartlock seems slightly useful

    While reducing bulk may be one of Android Lollipop's objectives, Google is adding features to the latest version of Android that's finally making it onto devices. The new on-body detection is a form of lock mode that allows the phone to sense its surroundings and react accordingly. Does it sound cool? Yes indeed. Is it any more useful than longer battery life? No. Essentially, the system uses the phone's built in accelerometer to detect whether or not the device is on your person or in your hand. While the device is moving (sensing subtle movements of your body), it will...

  • This smart coffee table runs both Windows 8 and Android

    We've seen some big tablets before -- like the Lenovo IdeaCentre Horizon Table PC, which earned the tongue-twisting mantle of The Table Tablet, or Samsung's 40-incher, which was curiously dubbed the Surface 2 before Microsoft got into the tablet scene. The Duet beats them all. The Duet by Ideum is a smart coffee table that looks like something from CSI: Miami. Beyond that, the beast of a thing runs both Android and Windows 8. With a click (or tap) of a button, you can switch between the two operating systems depending on your taste -- work or play. Apart from messing about with cute two-player...

  • LG G3 wins the Android Lollipop update race, company claims

    The LG G3 has become one of the Korean brand's best handsets in a long while, with its 4K screen and ultra responsive hardware, but its about to get an extra dose of special. Although LG has been mum on Android Lollipop recently, the company has now announced that its lucky G3 patrons will be able to upgrade to the latest edition of Android before anyone else. Starting in Poland (we're not sure why, either), this week's eastern European rollout will "be followed by other key markets in the near future." Hopefully this includes South Africa too in the coming...

  • LG G3 Beat review: just above average

    Think of LG as the anti-Samsung. It's making good strides with the mobile phone market and doesn't tend to waste billions on flashy advertising. A few years back, it was virtually unheard of in the portable device market, but it remained the go-to company for home appliances. But it fought back with the incredible LG G2 and G3, two of the best Android phones in the recent years. With great screens, competitive pricing and slick interfaces, LG's new batch of phones sold well and was generally embraced by the smartphone-hungry market. And now we have the mini-G3, the LG G3...

  • 8 essential apps every budding technology journalist needs

    Apple likes a tag-line or two, doesn't it? Remember that "There's an app for that" quip that instantly turned into a meme? We're all for that line. In fact, we believe that you should be equipped with an app for every potential situation one should find oneself. And you know what? There is an app for every situation out there -- from being lost in a big African city to snapping that perfect picture of a yellow daisy. The possibilities are endless. As journalists, we also have a habit of equipping ourselves with a plethora of apps, just in case. So we've...

  • The next best Android tablet: Nexus 9 expected to arrive Q4 2014 says HTC (accidentally)

    Who's keen for another Nexus tablet? Well, the Nexus 9 is coming, if this report from Focus Taiwan can be trusted. One of HTC's presidents, Jack Tong, mentioned during a New York press event that the 8.9" Nexus 9 is "HTC's commitment" for reentering the luscious tablet game. HTC launched the first Nexus device (the One) back in 2010, with others following due to the tablets roaring success. The Nexus 9 though, is reportedly being launched 16 October and will arrive first in Taiwan sometime in Q4. A rather prominent Android developer also tweeted the launch date, adding further credence to...

  • Watch this: Android Wear out, Windows 95 in

    When users booted into their Windows 95 desktops for the first time back in 1995, I imagine that there was quite an air of excitement in the room. Internet Explorer 1.0 came bundled with the OS for the first time, and at the dawn of the dial-up era, the internet was now finally a consumer possibility. Roll on 20 years, and technology has grown so voracious that Windows 95 can now run on a user's wrist. This is both a product of technological folklore and mad science, but it is wholly possible to port Windows 95 to an Android Wear-based...

  • Xiaomi Redmi 1S Review: the other best $100 smartphone

    The budget smartphone market is going really crazy in terms of competition. Every brand is trying to offer better specifications than their competitors at a lower price. Asus recently launched the complete range of dual-SIM Android smartphones -- Zenfone 4 A400CG, Zenfone 4 A450CG, Zenfone 5 and Zenfone 6. Motorola had previously launched Moto G and Moto E. After launching the Xiaomi Mi 3 in India, the brand which is being termed as "Apple of China", it then announced the Redmi 1S. Even though the Redmi 1S is yet to arrive in stores, I managed to secure a review...

  • netsurferDUAL 8 review: local pride

    South African gadgets aren't great, or memorable. Can you name three, or even one smartphone/tablet developed in South Africa? No? Allow me to assist. The Netsurfer range of tablets are South African-developed and have been knocking about for years. They're low-cost, aimed at the mass-market and are ideal entry-level Android machines for those who're unfamiliar with technology because oddly enough, Netsurfer tablets come with thick, detailed instruction manuals that walk first-time users through every step of the Android setup. Yeah, most of us can knock out an Android setup without even thinking, but for the Luddite, desperate to learn the ways...

  • Android One incoming? Google India event penned for 15 September

    Google has much to say about Android One at I/O earlier this year, but not much was said after, until now. The Mountain View-based company has sent invites to an event taking place in India 15 September, rumoured to be the launch of its Android One platform. Back in June, Karbonn and Spice were two phone manufacturers signed up to the programme, which will benefit both manufacturers -- keeping costs of smartphones down thanks to Google's shared resources -- and Google itself -- the company seeks control of the enormous untapped budget smartphone market. We have seen a plethora of mobiles...