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Remember netbooks? The mini PCs’ window was wide a year or so before tablets shaped up. Now they’re long forgotten but the best of both worlds can be achieved with a keyboard case for 8-inch tablets.

Engadget has found the three best for Apple iPad Minis and the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, and provides a full rundown over on their site.

The collected cases are the ClamCase Pro for Apple iPad mini, the ZAGG Rugged Folio for Apple iPad mini and the ZAGG Folio for Samsung Galaxy Note 8.

Each case is a neat and tidy solution that keeps everything in one place and provides protection for the precious screens.

Check out the lowdown over at Engadget.

Samsung faces potential US import ban on its Galaxy/Nexus devices

Posted by wicked April - 7 - 2013 - Sunday Comments Off

samsung-vs-apple-case
In the everlasting patent war between Samsung and Apple, the US-based manufacturer seems to have recently obtained a very important victory.

Judge Thomas Pender from the United States International Trade Commission (ITC) has ruled that Samsung devices infringe on a text selection patent owned by Apple, a feature that’s available on iPhones and iPads. Another Apple claim, one that sought injunction for Samsung’s use of a patented technology for detecting microphones when they are inserted in the headphone jack, has been rejected.

The decision is appealable, but if Samsung is to lose the appeal in front of the full commission as well, Apple is entitled to requesting an US import ban for most smartphones and tablets in the Samsung Galaxy and Samsung Nexus lines.

The final decision is expected to arrive at some point during August and it is yet unknown if Samsung can avoid the potential import ban via a software update that would change the way text selection is made. We’ll keep you up to date with any further developments!

The post Samsung faces potential US import ban on its Galaxy/Nexus devices appeared first on Android Authority.

Kindle Fire

There are probably hundreds of ways you can rank the best and worst tablets around. Most of you do it by display size and crispness, performance or build quality, but how about repairability?

True, tearing a tab apart and then putting it together with your bare hands and a Phillips screwdriver are not the first things to come to mind when scouring the online stores for the best deal. But wouldn’t it be nice to know that you could easily do that if you really needed to?

The guys at iFixit seem to think so, and, after taking several tablets for destructive spins and then making them look as new, they’ve come to a few interesting conclusions. The most shocking revelation – Dell’s XPS 10 is the best at something.

Well, not the best, but the easiest to repair slate. The Windows-based 10-incher fell short of perfection, but still got 9 points out of ten. Which basically means that fixing the thing in time of need is a walk in the park for anybody.

iPad 4

Amazon’s Kindle Fire is the very worthy silver medalist, with an 8 score, while the podium is wrapped up by… wait for it… the 5-inch Dell Streak. Talk about a blast from the past.

The number four through six spots on the ranks are all captured by Android, but you’ll never guess who the highly commendable podium follow-ups are. We have the Motorola Xoom, Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 and Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD.

Wow! That is just… random. A two year-old 10-incher, an early 2012 7-incher and a late 2012 7-incher. There’s one more Android tab in the top 10, the Nexus 7, ranked an honorable eight, behind the Nook Simple Touch (which is also technically based on Android, we guess) and ahead of the iPad 1 and Nook Tablet (again running tweaked Android).

Surface Pro

But now comes the fun part. If we look past the Nexus 10 and Kindle Fire HD 8.9, who haven’t made the top 10 cut, but have still got passing grades. The Surface RT has a repairability score of 4, the iPads 2, 3, 4 and Mini get two points each, while the Surface Pro is at rock bottom, with 1 out of 10.

Pretty depressing, but hey, think of it this way – those four iPads are tied with Amazon’s Kindle Fire… if we add all their numbers together. As for the Surface RT and Pro, they’re seriously not worth our bad puns. They’re bad puns themselves. Ba dum tsss!

Just for the record, I know this is not the most meaningful competition. After all, the tabs are not ranked here from best to worst, but from easiest to toughest to repair. And yet chances are some of you will want to tinker around with your tab’s internals. In which case you could or could not go for Android, but you definitely should never, ever choose Apple. Just saying.

The post iFixit: Kindle Fire is the easiest to repair Android tablet, iPads and Surface Pro toughest overall appeared first on Android Authority.

128GB iPad 4 officially launched, will we see more 128GB tablets this year?

Posted by wicked January - 29 - 2013 - Tuesday Comments Off

ipad-4-1

Since we’re also keeping an eye on the competition, we’ll tell you that Apple announced a new iPad 4 version today, the 128GB model (Wi-Fi-only and Wi-Fi + Cellular), which is essentially similar to existing fourth-generation iPad tablets when it comes to specs and features, with storage being the only difference.

Obviously, the 128GB iPad 4 Wi-Fi model costs $100 more than the 64GB tablet, or $799, while the 128GB iPad 4 Wi-Fi + Cellular will retail for $929 and both models will hit stores on February 5. There’s nothing unusual about this pricing scheme, which falls in line with what Apple is used to charging for its tablets, and the fact that Apple is quietly announcing a new iPad 4 model should mean that the fifth-generation iOS tablet is only going to be unveiled later this year.

Do regular customers need that much storage on a tablet? Apple doesn’t seem to think so judging from the press release, with the 128GB models specifically targeting businesses that “regularly” use “large amounts of data such as 3D CAD files, X-rays, film edits, music tracks, project blueprints, training videos and service manuals.”

So if Apple is more serious when it comes to pitching iPads to enterprise customers, does that mean we’ll see similar offerings from the competition?

Microsoft

As you already know, Microsoft has its own Windows 8 tablets in stores, the Surface models, which aren’t selling as great as the company would like them to. Of those, there’s a 128GB Surface Pro model available to consumers, but the actual storage that can be used on the model sits at 83GB, which is certainly something business users that utilize “large amounts of data” won’t like.

Android

In the Android universe, most Android tablet makers make sure they include microSD support in their devices, so users can upgrade the available storage by themselves. Furthermore, external hard drives can be connected to Android tablets to offer even more storage space for the same kind of “large data.”

But since Apple and Microsoft are now offering devices that pack from the get-go 128GB of storage, does that mean that Android OEMs will also have such higher-priced models of their upcoming 2013 flagship devices in stores later this year? You know, not to copy Apple and Microsoft, but to have similar offers out there?

Would you buy a tablet that comes with 128GB of storage, or do you prefer to use other means to upgrade the memory? For what it’s worth, the Galaxy Note 2 can offer you up to 128GB of storage as long as you’re ready to buy the 64GB version and an extra 64GB microSD card to go with it.

Google Nexus 7 market share still small, but growing

Posted by wicked October - 25 - 2012 - Thursday Comments Off

While Android is today’s top platform in terms of smartphone numbers, tablets are an altogether different proposition. The Apple iPad still leads the game in terms of tablet use and mobile access for tablets. But Google’s Nexus 7 may already be making a dent on Apple’s sales, although in a small way.

Chitika reports that Google’s tablet offering still has a long way to go to the top. Apple’s iPad (various models) still enjoys 91% of all web traffic from tablets. The rest of the pie is shared among the likes of Samsung’s Galaxy tab, along with other Android tablets and the BlackBerry Playbook. The Nexus 7 itself has a 0.33% share of tablet traffic. But don’t be fooled by the paltry figures, as the Nexus 7 is inching its way up, with a 135% growth since July.

Still, iPad figures are difficult to beat. Cnet notes that Apple’s offering still leads the game, and Android has not yet succeeded in grabbing a significant market share from iOS in the tablet market. “In order to make the graph readable, we had to measure other tablets on a ‘per 100 iPad impressions’ scale,” said a Chitika spokesperson in an interview.

The Chitika figures might indicate that Apple may be on the decline, albeit quite slow, with a 0.34% decrease in web traffic in the same period. But with the launch of the latest Apple iPad Mini, should Android tablet makers be concerned that Apple will continue to reign supreme in this market?

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    Forget about the hardware, Apple and Amazon have totally different business models

    Posted by wicked September - 11 - 2012 - Tuesday Comments Off

    Amazon pricing

    Last week Amazon announced several new devices, the most important being the company’s new Kindle Fire tablets. They’re all powered by Android, and we could spend the next hundred or so words running you through their respective spec sheets, but that would be a waste of time.

    Comparing Amazon’s tablets to Apple’s tablets ignores something that’s fundamental to the way these two companies do business. Apple has ridiculously high margins. When they sell you a $500 device, roughly a third of that goes straight into their pocket. When Amazon sells you a tablet, they sell it to you for roughly the same price it took them to build the thing. Their hope is that you’ll use their device to buy stuff through their store. Whether it be digital media or physical goods, Amazon doesn’t care, they just want to become your preferred retailer.

    Where have we seen this business model before? The videogame industry. Sony, Nintendo, Microsoft, Sega, they’ll sell you their consoles either at cost or they’ll even lose money on the hardware, but it doesn’t matter since they make that money back by charging publishing houses for the rights to sell their games to customers. It’s a business model that has worked for several decades, and there’s no reason to believe that it won’t continue to be successful going forward.

    Is Amazon a threat to Apple? Yes and no. Apple tries their best to sell you something that you can actually use as your main computing device. Meanwhile Amazon is selling what can best be described as the 21st century equivalent of a shopping catalog. Those of us who grew up before the internet remember getting thick magazines in the mail, filled with glossy pages of things to buy. All those magazines had a toll free number on the bottom so you could buy whatever it is that caught your eye. Amazon, thanks to technology, has that all too tempting one click to purchase button.

    Related Posts

    Amazon: No opt out for Kindle Fire ads on all new models, Tablet bonanza from Amazon in 2012: two (or four?) new models rumored, Eric Schmidt confirms Google is interested in the hardware business, whatever that means


    This article, Forget about the hardware, Apple and Amazon have totally different business models , was originally published at AndroidAuthority.com – Your Android News Source.



    Are iPhone users richer & better-educated than Android users?

    Posted by wicked August - 2 - 2012 - Thursday Comments Off

    Image credit: Shutterstock

    Media consumption differs according to platform, a study by the Reynolds Journalism Institute has found. This is also influenced by demographics, including age, education and earning capacity. In the recently-released 2012 RJI Mobile Media News Consumption Survey, researchers have determined that Apple iPhone users are generally older, better-educated and earn higher than those using Android. This may account for Apple’s market dominance over Android since the beginning.

    RJI’s Roger Fidler has found that — surprise! — iOS and Android are the leading mobile platforms in the consumption of news and content from subscriptions and apps. However, a big portion of the respondents admit to using more than one platform in consuming media, which include a mix of smartphones, tablets and Android-powered e-readers.

    In terms of demographics, more Android users fall under the below-34 age group. Meanwhile, iPhone and Blackberry users tend to fall under the over-35 group. In terms of income a majority of Android users earn under $75,000 annually. Most iPhone and Blackberry users earn more than this amount. Education-wise, almost half of the Android users surveyed say they have college or graduate degrees. iPhone and Blackberry users that have bachelors or post-grad degrees are at 64%.

    So yes, iPhone and Blackberry users tend to be more affluent.

    This might come as an affront to Android users. However, considering that some markets have a preference for iOS and Blackberry devices, then education, age and earning capacity will surely be skewed toward these levels. For example, enterprise users — including big corporations and small businesses — are found to prefer iOS over Android. As such, users will tend to have higher-paying jobs and more advanced studies than the general consumer market.

    Additionally, Poynter points out that iPhone users are more attractive to news publishers, with these statistics. Consumption patterns seem to agree. A higher percentage of iPhone users subscribe to national newspapers, news magazines and other mobile publications, compared with Android.

    However, going beyond the research, publishers will still need to cover a lot of ground, since less than 33% of mobile users are regular subscribers to mobile publications. This can be a good opportunity for publishers and newsstand services to tap more users and potential subscribers in order to improve their reach and revenues.



    This article, Are iPhone users richer & better-educated than Android users? , was originally published at AndroidAuthority.com – Your Android News Source.



    ipad market share
    According to a recent blog post by stock market analyst Reggie Middleton (apparently an expert that also predicted the major financial crisis in Greece), Apple’s iPad will lose the tablet market crown in favor of Android tablets. A better phrasing of the same idea: Apple’s iOS will soon be dethroned by Google’s Android as the leading tablet OS. Currently sitting at only 10% behind the iPad, the Android tablet market share should be bigger than that of the iPad by the end of Q2 2012. Android is bound to take over the tablet market, as it did with the smartphone market a few years back.

    While the original article (as well as a slew of other articles around the same theme) is centered around margin compression and other financial stuff, there are a few ideas that even geeks such as myself can see trough. Middleton claims that most of the media, as well as financial analysts are under total Apple mind control and are thus unwilling (afraid was the actual word used by Middleton) to spill a single word against Apple, or their products (note: we call these people Apple fanboys).

    Case in point, a recent comparison article posted by CNET gave the tablet crown to the new iPad when compared against the ASUS Transformer Prime, something heavily contradicted by comments made by owners of the Transformer Prime. This is just one example out of the number of biased new iPad reviews that have popped out. In addition, the report in question claims that, according to several analysts, the new iPad wasn’t even close to duplicating the massive iPad 2 and iPad 1 sales.

    Another thing that stroked my interest was the fact that Apple is spending more money for the various components inside the new, third generation iPad, as you can see in the chart below.

    ipad components price

    Considering the fact that Samsung, a major player in Android tablet manufactures the two most important components inside the new iPad (the retina display and the A5X CPU), doesn’t it make sense for the iPad will soon be dethroned? Even more, how can a single tablet maker stand up to an array of Android tablet OEMs that already provide a high degree of diversity in their hardware offers? Apple could not do that with their iPhone, they won’t be able to accomplish that with the iPad. It’s not about who gets first into the market, it’s about who plays better on the long run. As it turns out, Android has a better business model than the closed iOS ecosystem.

    Although Android had arguably a slow start in the tablet area (many critics feel that Android 3.0 Honeycomb was unable to provide the experience users were looking for in a tablet), as the tablet and smartphone versions of Android have converged into Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, by the end of 2012, it is likely that the main attraction of all iPad models (the number and quality of apps available) will be matched by ICS tablets. Hardware-wise, before the fourth iPad generation comes out (probably in Q1 2013), we’re bound to see a number Android tablets that will trash the new iPad in all conceivable sectors: be it price-performance ratio, raw performance, form factor, and maybe even display quality.

    What do you guys think about this? Are there any Apple fanboys among the readers of this Android blog who are willing to contradict these expectations? Feel free to do so in the comment section below!


    This article, Android bound to dethrone the iPad and take over the tablet market, as it did with the smartphone market , was originally published at AndroidAuthority.com – Your Android News Source.



    Uncategorized

    IDC: iPad to dominate tablet sales for another four years. Is it possible?

    Posted by wicked March - 14 - 2012 - Wednesday Comments Off

    If there was any doubt that the tablet is here to stay, one can simply look at the latest report released by IDC. The research firm predict that global tablet shipments will reach 106.1 million units in 2012, up from the previously forecasted figure of 87.7 million units. A good chunk of these units will come from Apple, which is currently basking in the glow of the soon-to-be-released new iPad.

    Meanwhile, the report all but confirms the market popularity of competitively-priced Android tablets, specifically of the Amazon Kindle Fire, which helped the Android platform capture a bigger slice of the tablet pie over the final quarter of 2011. IDC’s report confirms previous analyses that estimated a change of tides in terms of market share of iOS and Android.

    Overall, the Android platform improved its market share from 32.3% to 44.6% in Q4 2011. Apple finished the year weakened, as it grabbed 57.4% market share, down from close to 80% in 2012. Other “notable” platforms include the Blackberry, which slid from 1.1% to 0.7%, and the defunct WebOS. The latter saw a spectacular, if sad, demise, considering it grabbed a 5% market share in the previous quarter, thanks to the firesales prompted by HP’s abrupt decision to ditch WebOS.

    It’s rather interesting, to say the least, how IDC predicts that Android tablets would only gain small traction in 2012, and how it’d take four more years for Android to dominate the market. While the new iPad hysteria will no doubt last for months, there are many solid Android tablets expected to enter the market this year. Coupled with Google’s push into the content side with the revamped Google Play, we do think that 2012 is the year when Android will become the leading platform in the tablet market.

    What do you think? Can the iPad hold 50%+ of the tablet market for another four years?


    This article, IDC: iPad to dominate tablet sales for another four years. Is it possible? , was originally published at AndroidAuthority.com – Your Android News Source.



    Nvidia’s Tegra 3 Reminds Apple’s New iPad Just What It’s Capable Of (Video)

    Posted by wicked March - 8 - 2012 - Thursday Comments Off

    Nvidia just wants to send out a reminder, with all the hype about Apple’s new iPad and all, just who rules when it comes to the mobile core space.  The company touts their latest product, the Tegra 3 chipset and claims that the iPad’s CPU is no challenge.  And as proof, they’re pointing towards their Nvidia powered gaming options.  Using their site, the chip manufacturer shows off just how good the 4-Plus-1 CPU can be.  Check out the list of impressive games that have been released to compliment the powerful CPU.

    Mobile app developers are beginning to realize just how far they can take mobile applications when utilizing NVIDIA Tegra 3 – the world’s only 4-PLUS-1 quad-core mobile processor with the extra battery saver core that allows it to use less power than dual-core processors.

    Here’s a quick look at just a few of the top Tegra 3 apps:

    • Splashtop THD from Splashtop Inc. – allows you to seamlessly stream content from your desktop onto your Tegra 3 tablet.
    • Photaf THD Panorama Pro from Oren Bengigi – a new photo-stitching app that allows you to combine a sequence of photos to create a panoramic view of any scenery. This app accelerates image stitching time by using all four Tegra 3 processing cores.
    • Snapseed from Nik Software – one of the easiest, most intuitive photo editors available for your Tegra 3 device. Take a picture, customize it to your liking and immediately send to friends and family. Coming to Google Play this summer.
    • PowerDirector Mobile from CyberLink– this app was once a powerful desktop-based video editing tool. Thanks to the Tegra 3’s high-performance and battery-friendly 4-PLUS-1 architecture, PowerDirector Mobile will give you the power to manipulate and edit videos on your mobile device. Coming to Google Play this fall.
    source: Nvidia