Posts Tagged Android

Iwata: Gamers need dedicated handhelds, have a desire for ‘rich and deep’ experiences

The argument for the 3DS has been precarious at the outset, price not withstanding. With the rise of the iPhone and Android devices, people are playing more games on their phones and tablets than ever before, cutting into a handheld gaming market dominated by Nintendo for more than a decade.

“I don’t think there’s not a bright future for handheld devices but I understand that the competition, again with the rise of smart devices is different, and I do recognize that,” Nintendo president Satoru Iwata told Kotaku during a frank discussion on the 3DS and current portable gaming ecosystem. Iwata offered insight, not only on his own company’s stance, but on the needs of consumers in general ? and how Nintendo isn’t trying to compete so much as offer value.

“Previously we had to think, ok, ‘How are we competing with Sony?, How are we competing with Microsoft?, How do we compete with all the other software titles and all the other publishers out there?’ That environment has changed. And the games available for smartphones, I’m not saying that none of these are interesting, rich or fun experiences, because I know that there are some. And one way we can ensure that there’s a market for handheld gaming devices is by continuing to bring out entertaining and engaging software that will provide users experiences that they cannot get on these other devices.”

Iwata expects the need for “rich and deep” experiences will remain consistent, even while consumers change the context in which they play games. “I believe that as environments change and as the world progresses we’re going to have different ways in which people want to spend their time,” he said. “That being said, I don’t think we’re going to see the desire to have, again, rich and deep sort of gaming experiences… we’re not going to see that vanish. That’s not going to go away.”

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Basic Android Troubleshooting Tips

It is a well-known fact that all phones face problems regardless of their operating system. Unlike the popular iPhone, there are a number of phones that run on the free Android operating system and each one of them have their own hardware quirks. In other words, any phone that runs on an Android OS might not have the same solution if the problem is a hardware related issue. This post basically highlights the common problems that you might face on your Android phone.

Your first step is to identify, diagnose and fix common problems. Obviously, the solution depends on the nature of your problem. Unless you diagnose the symptom, you will not be in a position to troubleshoot your Android device right way. While there are certain issues that can be resolved rather easily, there are ones that can be quite tough. For instance, you might not be too impressed with the default Android keyboard but you can easily tweak or replace this.

The next step is to be prepared for any quirks while installing Apps. This is one of the most common problems that many Android users face. Although installing and removing of apps are rather simple and straightforward, you should also be aware on how to safely use the market.

Another common problems faced by most Android devices is with its battery. The best way to manage better battery consumption is to disable unused internet connections and other unwanted elements in the user interface. This will help you prevent battery drainage and also considerably save power usage.

Most Droid device problem can be resolved with a simple troubleshooting tip and that is by simply turning the phone off and then turning it back on after a minute. This is very easy and this should be the first step you ought to try when faced with a problem. My guess is that a lot of Droid problems can be resolved this way.

If your Android device is still not responding to the switch off and on method, then try the crash recovery process. This is also a simple and uncomplicated process. All you have to do is to switch off your Android device, slide the back cover, and remove the battery. Reinstall it after a minute. Most common problems can be resolved using this method. Instructions for removing the battery cover and battery can be found in the user manual.

Your last ditch effort should be to reset your Droid’s settings. You must remember that resetting the phone will remove and erase all your personal data that has been stored on the phone. You can use the factory data reset button thereby restoring your phone settings to the default factory mode. However, this should be used only as a last option. This is similar to a system restore that is done on your PC, when your PC runs into unexpected trouble.

Finally, if none of these options seem to work, contact customer support.

This is a guest post by Jem Larson of buyVerizon.com, a site that offers savings and current information on Verizon FiOS, as well as Verizon.com.

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Catching the Spy was never this easy

Espionage software, a spyware industry, has recently experienced a shift in its customer base – from spying over Chinese intelligence agents and Eastern European the industry is receiving requests from jealous spouses, paranoid parents and obsessive bosses.

Several forensic experts and former Pentagon contractor Michael Robinson came together at the Defcon hacker conference to discuss different ways to detect a range of cell phone spyware, like MobileSpy and FlexiSpy – which can easily be installed manually in the targets’ mobile phone to track their location, read their text messages and listen in on their calls.

The Predator becomes the Prey

The first rule of spying is discretion – the target should know that they are being spied on. Imagine you install cell phone monitoring software on your target’s mobile to track the subject’s activities; but every time data is transferred, your details are specified on the target’s mobile phone, revealing your identity.

Robinson unearthed this glitch in spying after testing five commercial spying tools on mobiles with four Android devices and an iPhone. He found out that once the data is transferred from the target’s mobile, the spy’s personal details, email address and phone number are displayed on the target’s mobile.

Later, he tested following tools and devices, and found out glitches in the spyware, which enables the target to identify their spy.

Spy Bubble:

Robinson installed “the world’s most advanced cell phone tracking and monitoring system” – the Spy Bubble on an LG Optimus Elite. He found out that the commercial spyware left behind an installer file called “radio.apk” in the subdirectory “/mnt/sdcard/Download.”

Mobistealth:

Robinson used LG Optimus V to test Mobistealth, “the ultimate cell phone spy software,” and discovered that it left behind a file “mobistealthv2.apk”, which was clearly visible in the download directory of the phone’s SD card.

Flexispy:

Robinson ascertained that Flexispy proved to be the most ineffective spyware program, which also happened to be the most expensive – with a $350 fee per year. On being installed on an HTC Wildfire – rooted, as per the software’s installation instructions – it left behind a file called “FSXGAD_2.03.3.apk” on the SD card’s download folder.

Mobilespy:

Robinson installed this spyware on a Samsung Galaxy Prevail. The glitchy spyware left behind a file called “ms5-2.1-above.apk” in the phone’s SD card download folder.

Safe Spyware

Spyera proved to be the only spyware that didn’t present obvious clues visible to the average user – tested on an iPhone. Robinson found it difficult to detect the spy software in the mobile phone installed – not because of its stealthiness, but from the difficulty of accessing the file directory on an iOS device. By installing software used for forensic techniques, Robinson found a folder called “Logs” including a file called “ownspy.log.” Using this spyware the affected person can spy on the target while keeping their identity anonymous. Robinson confirmed that this spyware can only be detected by installing special forensic software in the target’s mobile phone – which users are not particularly aware of.

Author Bio:

Ane Gomes, an author significantly contributes towards PC security Software,cell phone spy software, iphone spyware(download iphone spy) and blackberry spy. You can also follow her on twitter @AneGomes for more details

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Indie dev PerBlue makes millions, sees Android dominating iOS


Source: Joystiq

Justin Beck launched PerBlue while finishing college in 2008. He got to work on the company’s first title, Parallel Kingdom, with his co-founder and a staff of seven in Madison, Wisconsin, surviving on $20,000 of savings from a stint at Microsoft. Today, PerBlue generates $3 million a year, supports 35 employees and has successfully launched three free-to-play MMOs in the Parallel universe on Android and iOS.

PerBlue’s Parallel Mafia and Parallel Zombies both hit mobile devices in 2012, but during his talk at GDC Europe, Beck discussed the specific finances of Parallel Kingdom, which has been live since 2008.

Parallel Kingdom doesn’t have a massive number of players, hype or notoriety in the wider gaming world, but it proves that when managed efficiently, a mobile game can provide huge profit for a small developer. Parallel Kingdom has 1.5 million registered accounts, but only 15,000 daily active users, which Beck admits is “not that big.” These users, however, represent $0.40 – $0.50 per user, per day for PerBlue. Extrapolated to 50,000 monthly active users, that’s more than $200,000 each month in microtransactions from one title alone.

Beck has transitioned from programmer to CEO, tracking PerBlue’s finances with detailed precision, but without self-destructive obsession. From this vantage, he sees Android outpacing iOS in almost every way ? 85 percent of PerBlue’s players use Android, with the remainder on iOS. The Android arket is growing, with multiple carriers offering dozens of devices to potential players, compared to Apple’s slimmer choices.

“Android is continuing to outpace iOS…. Android is a freight train.”

– Justin Beck, CEO of PerBlue
Furthering the hardware imbalance, mobile carriers earn a higher margin on Android devices and have begun advertising those over iOS, Beck has noticed. Previously in Germany, for example, Vodafone advertised iPhones in its windows, but today it’s the Samsung Galaxy S3.

PerBlue sees slightly lower monetization rates on Android, but higher player retention, making monetization across Android and iOS equal. Though of course since more players use Android, its revenue stream is higher.

“iPhone makes a little bit more money at a quicker pace, but Android actually has more users over a longer period of time,” Beck tells Joystiq. During his talk, Beck called Android a freight train and predicts that while Apple is “an amazing business,” it won’t be able to keep pace.

PerBlue itself will continue chugging along, creating games with the tools and approach that it has proven work well, 3 million times over.

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Android extends dominance in smartphones worldwide

NEW YORK: Research firm IDC says Google’s Android operating system has extended its dominance in the smartphone market largely because of the success of Samsung’s line of phones that run the software.

IDC says Samsung Electronics Co. and other phone makers shipped nearly 105 million Android smartphones in the second quarter. Android had 68 percent of the worldwide market, up from 47 percent a year earlier.

The gains come largely at the expense of BlackBerry phones made by Research in Motion Ltd. and Symbian phones used mostly by Nokia Corp. Each saw its market share drop below 5 percent.

The market share for Apple Inc.’s iPhone fell slightly to 17 percent, but the company shipped more units than a year ago. Apple is the No. 2 smartphone maker, behind Samsung.

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Final Fantasy brings the Warriors of Light to Android

Hot on the heels of Final Fantasy 3’s launch on Android, the original has made its debut on the Google Play store ? well, a remake of the original, anyway. Final Fantasy on Android is the same as the iOS version from years ago and the recent Windows Phone 7 version, both of which are based on the PSP remake from back in 2007.

Final Fantasy on Android is available for $6.99 in the Google Play store right now, and runs on Android 2.1-compatible devices and up.

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Nokia scraps software project meant to rival Google Android phones: Report

Struggling Finnish cellphone maker Nokia has scrapped a software project which it had hoped would compete with mass-market Google Android phones, three sources with direct knowledge of the company’s plans said.

Nokia was hoping the Linux-based software platform, code-named Meltemi, would replace its ageing Series 40 software in more advanced feature phones, but has killed the project as part of its massive cost-cutting drive.

Scrapping the platform means loss-making Nokia will risk losing its strong position in the mass-market — where phones are priced at $100-$200. Nokia controlled more than 20 percent of this market in the first quarter, according to research firm IDC.

Nokia’s Chief Executive Stephen Elop flagged Meltemi in a leaked video in mid-2011, but Nokia has never officially confirmed Meltemi existed. It declined to comment on Thursday.

In June, Nokia said it would cut 10,000 jobs – one in five staff in its phone business – as it aims to pull the company out of the red. Talks over job cuts are scheduled to end this week in Finland.

One of the sources, who works at a supplier, said the original plan was for the first feature phones using Meltemi should to be on the market by now.

Smartphones such as Apple’s iPhone which offer a platform for third-party application developers, is where the industry’s strongest growth is. But simpler feature phones, with limited support for third-party software, still account for most units sold.

Nokia’s Series 40 platform are in around 2 billion cellphones, making it the most ubiquitous software in the market. But it lacks the smartphone-like experience Meltemi could have offered.

Google’s Android platform has stormed the smartphone market in its first few years. Last quarter it was used in roughly 60 percent of all smartphones sold.

Nokia last year dumped its own smartphone software platforms in favour of Microsoft’s Windows Phone, which has so far had a limited impact, in part due to the high prices of phones using it.

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Android, Apple extend gains in smartphone market

WASHINGTON: The Google Android platform extended its lead in the US smartphone market while Apple increased its market share to nearly a third in March through May, a survey showed Monday.

Android accounted for 50.9 percent of all smartphones used in the US during the three-month average period, according to the comScore survey.

Apple’s iPhone scored 31.9 percent of the market, up from 30.2 percent in the prior three-month period.

The survey comes amid intense competition and legal fights over patents in the smartphone market.

A judge in California last week granted Apple’s request for an injunction blocking US sales of Samsung Galaxy Nexus smartphones made in collaboration with Google to challenge the iPhone. Additional patent cases are pending in other courts.

ComScore said nearly 110 million people in the US owned smartphones during the three months ending in May, up five percent from February.

The survey showed continued bad news for Research in Motion’s BlackBerry, which saw its platform share fall to 11.4 percent from 13.4 percent.

Microsoft’s share edged up slightly to 4.0 percent from 3.9 percent.

Among all mobile phones, Korean-based Samsung remained the top maker with 25.7 percent of the US market. Second was fellow Korean LG with 19.1 percent, while Apple was third with 15 percent.

Android and iPhone smartphones accounted for slightly more than 90 percent of US smartphone sales in the fourth quarter of 2011, industry-tracker NPD Group reported earlier this year.

A recent survey by ABI Research found that Samsung and Apple have captured more than half the global market for smartphones and over 90 percent of its profits.

ABI said Samsung delivered 43 million units in the quarter, to 35 million for Apple.

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Mobile Gaming – Android vs iOS

As the popularity of smartphones has gone through the roof, the apps battle between the top platforms has been fierce. And for the majority of people, when we say apps, what we mainly mean is games.

Also, where a few years ago we seemed to be gearing up for a five-way battle in terms of smartphone OSs, we very quickly ended up with two in terms of bulk sales: Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS. So which of them currently holds the gaming crown?

Looking at sales of popular apps turns up some interesting, if slightly predictable results. The top 10s for both platforms (in terms of paid apps) are incredibly similar: there are three versions of Angry Birds and a version of Scrabble on each list, while both lists also share touchscreen speed favourite Fruit Ninja, silly tilter Doodle Jump and BAFTA winning strategy game Cut the Rope.

Clearly, all of these games fall into the ‘quick fix’ category, rather than depth and deep strategy or amazing graphics and high level of AI. It’s also worth noting only one of the one or two of the big sellers is priced over $0.99, with none over $2.99 – which together tells you all you need to know about what we mostly want to use our smartphones for.

Android and iOS gaming has become, for all intents and purposes, one in the same. Developers are creating extremely playable, fun yet simple games that easily transfer between mobile platforms. While Apple clearly has the edge in terms of total number of apps, when the numbers are in the millions and the top 10s are almost identical, the numbers are simply arbitrary.

While Android gives you the device choice though, it’s worth noting Apple currently offers the better tablet experience, as well as a significant lead in terms of tablet specific apps. Buying an iOS app could see you playing it on an iPod, iPhone and an iPad. But then, if you’re the kind of Apple junkie who owns those products, this isn’t going to be an argument you’re interested in any way!

While this may seem inconclusive, it’s anything but – it’s actually the greatest of all things, a win-win situation. If you want to pick up a smartphone, there are likely to be several things on your mind: the camera, the price, the provider, screen size, how much data you’ll get. There are so many choices to make – especially with Android, where you’ll find handsets from Samsung, HTC, Motorola and Sony vying for your hard earned cash.

When it comes to gaming though, you can be happy in the knowledge that both offer a fantastic experience that won’t break the bank and that give you plenty of choice. Unless there is a particular game you’re after that is only on one platform, you’ll find both OSs tick the boxes.

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Review: Lava Xolo X900

There’s something significant about this Android smartphone from Lava – it says Intel Inside on the back cover. In fact, Lava’s Xolo is the first Android smartphone powered by an Intel processor – a processor based on Intel’s Atom processor, which still does duty in netbooks. But what does this mean for you?

The new platform is codenamed Medfield and even though it’s a single architecture, it promises performance to match and even better many dual core smartphones. Making processors for smartphones is way different from making processors for desktops or laptops. That’s why the Atom processor here is modified for higher efficiency.

The Xolo is based on an Intel reference design. This means that it looks good and performs well. The flipside to this is that there may be other phones with exactly the same design. The device itself has a smart silver-black design and an even thickness throughout – similar to the current iPhone. The bright and responsive 4-inch screen has a 1024 x 600 pixel resolution which makes it very sharp. The 8MP camera also does 1080p video in acceptable quality. Battery life is about one day with normal use. We faced no issues with call quality.

You will notice that the phone is not very thermally efficient – the lower half of the device tends to get uncomfortably warm during extended use – especially when you’re taxing it with a game or HD movie. The battery is not user replaceable and we felt the device could do with better build quality. Coming to the price – it’s roughly Rs 22,000. This puts the Xolo at a disadvantage.

On one hand, it has Samsung’s Galaxy S Plus as competition. The Galaxy S Plus will not match the Xolo in performance, but it has Samsung’s excellent Amoled screen, plus the assurance that it comes from the world’s largest cellphone maker (by unit sales). You could also consider Motorola’s Atrix 2 – a dual core Android smartphone with better build quality, dual core processor, larger display (4.3-inch vs 4-inch), expandable storage, faster camera and similar performance levels for about the same price.

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