BlackBerry 10 Updates Facebook and Twitter App

BlackBerry 10BlackBerry, the company that made a roaring comeback last year with its BlackBerry 10 operating system and a couple of its flagship smartphones, released its rebooted services in the US last month. And less than a week later, the company has rolled out significant updates for its social networking apps Facebook and Twitter. This is the first update for the popular website Facebook and the second update for its micro-blogging counterpart –Twitter. So as a roundup, here are the changes that have been made.

Facebook:
Friend Finder:
The new update showcases a feature that allows users to learn if any of their Facebook friends are proximity to where they stand. The feature will first use the device’s location tracker to learn where the users is present currently, and then use the check-in feature to reveal the user some of his friends who are close to him/her.

Photos:
The update now allows users to carry out a number of photo related tasks with ease. Users can now easily tag their Facebook friends while uploading photos using the app, and can even retain some of the Facebook images they like over the device’s local storage space.

Sharing & Events:
Sharing in BB10 gets better with this update. Users can now share any content they find interesting on their Facebook news feed to their friends on their contact list via BBM, message, email and other sources. Users can also instantly schedule and plan events, invite friends for the event, keep track of the events, post content regarding the event and even tag some of their friends.

Twitter:
Though not massive as Facebook, the Twitter update still is quite significant. The newly included features allow users to view any new activity such as mentioning, follows and favorites in one place; Checkout photos, article summaries and other updates within their tweets, and learn the number of times a tweet has been added as a favorite.

Unlike the Android and iOS operating systems, the company BlackBerry develops some of the apps for its devices. And as of now, it has over 100,000 apps under its belt and is hoping to increase the limit even more in the coming months. Activities like updation and inclusion is indeed necessary for the company to compete with the existing industry giants. So let’s hope the company sustains the good work that it’s doing now and emerges as one of the best smartphones of the year.

Google Reportedly Developing a Smartwatch (Too)

Google Reportedly Developing a Smartwatch (Too)Rumors and speculations on the next generation wearable device began with Apple, when a leak claimed that a team of hundred technicians were working on a smartwatch. A few weeks later, perfectly in line with the third law of Newton, Samsung was subjected to a rumor that it was working on a wearable watch concept as well. Following this, the latest tech company to join the league is our very own search engine giant Google, whose close resources say that the company is also working on a Smartwatch.

Though Google has not officially announced on the development of a Smartwatch, the resources claim that the Android development team, which builds the OS for mobiles and smartphones, is working on an Android powered Smartwatch. According to rumors, the Smartwatch will be more like an extension to the Android powered smartphones people use. Whispers are also that the watch will sport a flip-up display and an on-board camera. And as far as the operating system is concerned, it will supposedly be a custom version of Android, stepped down to support the watch’s capabilities.

Could this be Real?

Well, maybe! Because, on a patent that was released by the Mountain View based company in the year 2011, the company was seen working on a wearable device of the form watch that sports dual screen flip-up display, a touch based user interface and a camera. However, when reached, a hesitant Google spokesperson said that he would not comment regarding this.

The competition:

As far as competition and rivalry regarding the dominance of Smartwatch is concerned, we must say it has already begun. At the CES 2012, Pebble revealed its Smartwatch device, which was followed by the rumors on Apple and Samsung. If true, Apple’s Smartwatch will be powered by iOS and Samsung’s by a custom built operating system.

If everything goes good, this might be the year of smartwatches. And following this, a whole lot of tech manufacturers may venture into producing wearable watches, which may further spice up the competition in the market. So, let’s wait and watch as to who dominates the Smartwatch market this 2013.

The Power Packed Features of Samsung Galaxy S4

galaxy s4It’s finally here! After loads of speculations, rumors and claims, the much awaited product from the Korean based company has finally hit the shelves. And this time, it’s massive, advanced and powerful than ever. With an array of stunning features and capabilities, the flagship devices is all set to pose a good threat to its smartphone counterpart and dominate the market. What are the amazing features of the S4? Read on to find out!

The Specs:
First things first! If there is one thing that captivates people to proceed with its purchase or simply to get hands on with it, it’s its specifications. Some of the specifications fall in line with the rumors that rolled out over the internet earlier, and include a stunning 5 inch Super AMOLED display with a maximum resolution of up to 1920X1080p at 441 ppi. The screen is built over a third generation Corning Gorilla Glass and is designed to adjust the color tones and complexions according to the content being watched. The other massive technical specifications include a Qualcomm quad-core Snapdragon S600 processor at 1.5GHz, a 13MP camera behind and a 2MP camera in the front and storage capacity of the order 16, 32 and 64GB. It runs on a 4.2.2 version of Android Jelly Bean and with an additional layer of Samsung’s custom OS – TouchWiz added over it.

Smart Pause:
The smart pause is one of the most advanced and futuristic features to be included in the S4. The feature is designed to pause a video, once the user turns away from the screen. Though we’re not sure of its practicality, it sure is a giant leap in terms of tech innovations.

No more Taps and Swipes:
This device has rolled out to eliminate some of the most basic features of a touch phone – the touch. With the S4, users can now open their emails, videos, pictures and any content on their screen by just hovering their fingers over the content they wish to open. No need to click!

Tilt to Scroll:
Yes, that’s right! To scroll down or up to view a content, users have to just tilt their phones accordingly and the screen will automatically scroll in the relevant direction at a significant speed.

Camera:
Apart from its powerful lens, the camera has a number of other impressive features as well. The S4’s camera allows users to use both (the front and the rear) cameras at once, capture a panoramic image, take up to 100 shots within 4 seconds and make a collage out of it and a erase unnecessary portions of an captured image.

So, that was it! The amazing and power packed features of the Samsung Galaxy S4. With these, the device is definitely set to dominate the smartphone market, but will it be actually able to take down the iPhone 5 and emerge as the best gadget of the year? Let’s wait and watch!

Google Reader to retire, fans start save Reader campaign

Google ReaderGoogle Reader is shutting down on July 1, 2013. After 2011’s clean-up campaign of its almost defunct programs, Google has yet again announced a set of 70 programs that will be sent to the recycle bin. Google Reader is one of them to face the axe.

Users across the globe, though, are not happy with the decision. They have already started a ‘Save the Google Reader campaign’ on the web and are encouraging all fans to register their signatures. Some bloggers have complained (in their blogs) that Google had been neglecting the application since a year and removing its social features was the first step in the direction. While, there are others who feel the reverse. They think shutting it down is better since the Reader had developed technical glitches over the last one year.

Google’s official blog justifies the axe. They say its declining memberships and usage are reasons enough for its removal. The blog states: ‘We launched Google Reader in 2005 in an effort to make it easy for people to discover and keep tabs on their favorite websites. While the product has a loyal following, over the years usage has declined. So, on July 1, 2013, we will retire Google Reader. Users and developers interested in RSS alternatives can export their data, including their subscriptions, with Google Takeout over the course of the next four months.’

How it all began

The Reader, which was started in 2005, enabled RSS feeds, a common feature which was being provided by almost every website and search engine at the time. By then, Google Reader’s popularity had hit the peak with millions of Reader fans. It helped users to find friends, follow them, share their stories (videos/text) and also post comments. After a while, Google+ was created and all social features removed from the Reader, were added in this new program.

Features

* New items at a glance on its front page
* Automatic marking of items as read upon scrolling (expanded view only)
* Keyboard shortcuts for main functions
*Choice between list or expanded view for viewing (showing story title or a description, respectively)
*Import-export subscription lists as an OPML file, an XML format
*Search in all feeds, across all updates from subscriptions

World’s top restaurant “Noma” dishes up food poisoning!

World’s top restaurant “Noma” dishes up food poisoning!  Noma’s Interesting History

Having received rave reviews all around the world, the Noma Restaurant of Copenhagen is the most sought after eating destination by world-wide tourists and food lovers. You could also see most of the magazines and news channels flashing the versatility and fame of the restaurant. The interesting name of the destination arises from Danish expressions namely Nordisk & mad bringing together the first two letters of the two expressions & making it NOMA.

The Mishap

The shocking news that hit media lately is that the restaurant served up some stale food to their attached customers where a 63 of them were found unwell and most had symptoms of a strong food poisoning. Critics and restaurateurs were shocked by the incident at the Danish Michelin Star restaurant directly raising questions on grounds of basic sanitation. Noma was authoritatively cautioned for making the quality of food & supply below restaurant standards.

While the Sanitation wing of the Danish Government appeared to monitor the cleanliness of the restaurant’s kitchen, the creator Rene Redzepi himself was shocked to find out that many wash basins weren’t working properly. The hot water supply didn’t appear to be fitted correctly according to the reports. Many tourists and food lovers are left aghast by such an incident in the big place, and those who were affected by the issue requested for a refund.

The owner and key chef of the restaurant Rene Redzepi expressed his apologies for the blunder and ensured one hundred percent safety and supreme standards of food forever. He also said the cause of the infection, Norovirus, was because of queasy worker in the kitchen but authorities traced reasons as storage of stale fish.

Achievements of Noma

  • From 2010-2012, the quality of food served is graded unparalleled & has been called as the finest restaurant in the world according to reviews and consumers.
  • Serving incredible varieties of Nordic food through fresh ingredients of the native land, the chefs have been highly successful in promoting Nordic cuisine all around the world.
  • There are so many specials in the restaurant to mention from a wholesome meal that encloses dishes in 12 different courses from starters, appetizers to incredible & unique desserts. It could cost anywhere around $350.
  • The Hen and the Egg is the best tasting dish in the bulky menu card of the restaurant
  • Their Nordic dishes are outlandish and surprise consumers with the “Fermented Grasshoppers” and “ground delicious cucumber”
  • While many specials are available in the restaurant, you can also tour to the kitchen along with the chef to find out what you are eating.
  • Famous customers include Chef Gordon Ramsay, Wahaca and Caprice.

Facebook Revamps News Feed

Facebook Revamps News FeedFollowing the unveiling of the Facebook Gifts and Graph Search, the social networking giant on Thursday launched a new and revamped News Feed option that aims to enhance the way users connect, explore and get to learn what’s happening with their friends. Unlike the Timeline view that managed to partially allure users, the overhauled News-feed brings in more content from the user’s closest circle. Photos, check-ins, shared articles and events have received a significant upgrade in the way they look, making them seem impressive and visually appealing. Read on to learn more about the changes in the news feed.

It’s all about impressing through visuals:

The revamp in most cases resemble the website’s mobile website that shows up pictures and images in large thumbnails. Photos have been given much emphasis in the update and any album or photos users share, appear large and occupy most of the screen. Moreover, it’s just not the photos and albums that appear bigger, the articles that have been shared, events, check-ins and even friend requests that have been accepted by users appear big with a snippet of information showing who has shared the article, a small portion depicting the profile of the accepted-friend and information on the author of the article appear along with them. So, thumbnails will be dominating the news feed from now on!

Sorting:

The new update also allows users to take charge of the content they wish to see. Apart from the normal news feed that displays recent posts along with the top posts, users will be able to refine what they wish to see on their news feed by filtering them with the Most Recent option. This will show a glimpse of every new post from the user’s friends circle to the pages they have liked. Also, there is an All Friends option, which the users can select to view content from their friends but not from pages/people they follow. In this they can further refine their searches to view only photos, music, games and groups. Similarly, users can even choose and view content from people/pages they follow and exclude content from friends.

By this way, users can customize their news-feed screen, and unearth tons of posts and content that have been buried over by Facebook’s ranking methodologies. Another major revamp is that various tabs like messages, apps, gifts and the likes have been given a permanent accommodation on the website’s left hand side along with the chat window, which has been moved from the lower-right portion to the left. And finally, the company claims that there will not be any major differences in the way the news-feed option looks and feels in a desktop and mobile. With this update, Facebook aims to revive the way people look and access the website. And to learn if it succeeds to achieve its intentions, we will have to wait and find out!

Latest Promotional Stunt of Oz: The Great and Powerful

Latest Promotional Stunt of Oz: The Great and Powerful Disney seems to have pulled out all the stops to market their latest movie, Oz: The Great and Powerful. Ever since the creators publicized their intention to remake the golden oldie Wizard of Oz, fans have been subjected to a barrage of promotional tactics in order to keep it fresh in their mind.

Some time ago, Disney collaborated with Google in order to create an interactive browser for the movie. Together they introduced the Find Your Way to Oz website, wherein by accessing it, fans could embark on a journey to Oz, complete with a fun, interactive circus, a hot air balloon ride, and the opportunity meet the cast of the movie… all within the virtual world, of course.

You begin your journey in a deserted circus in Kansas, where you can click funny pictures in their photo booth, make your own music, or even create your own movie.

Later you can hop into a hot air balloon and go in search of the Land of Oz, up in the sky. You confront a tornado and have to steer your way through it, but at the end, will successfully be able to make your way to Oz. Once you reach, you can meet certain members of the cast, and also be treated to ‘never-seen-before’ clips of the movie. It provides for a highly entertaining experience, while giving us a glimpse into the movie.

After that, there was the hot air balloon that was scheduled to fly over New York a few days prior to the release of the movie…an idea that was meant to blow fans away, only mother nature decided to do so herself…literally.

In what started as a highly promising promotional gimmick, ended up a complete disaster, when the balloon only made it as far as 10 or 20 feet before a strong gust of wind blew it off-course…right on top of a fountain in Central Park. Unfortunately, the fountain made a gaping hole in the balloon, rendering it completely useless. The idea was then dropped.

In recent times, Disney came up with the brilliant idea to incorporate the movie with the gaming world, by collaborating with Imangi Studios, to create Temple Run Oz.

Temple Run is one of the most popular games around now…even beating Angry Birds. Disney’s idea of using the game to promote their movie is nothing short of genius. The move not only guarantees to intrigue a wider audience and sway them towards watching the movie, but it also ensures that it stays that way long after the movie’s release.

The aim of the game is simple. It’s pretty much like the original, only here you play Oz who’s striving to stay alive at all cost, all the while running down the yellow brick road. You have flying monkeys, tornadoes, and even the option to hitch a ride on a hot air balloon.

It’s all good fun, and now one’s all the more eager to watch the movie. March 8th couldn’t get here fast enough.

Top Kids Apps to Entertain Your Child

Top Kids Apps to Entertain Your ChildRegardless of whether you like it or not, your child is hooked onto the world of apps, and who can blame them considering this tech-savvy world we live in now.

With the wide array of entertainment opportunities available to them now, children have now traded in their bikes, jump ropes and dolls, for a Smartphone or a tablet. True, it isn’t healthy and it should be curbed to an extent. However, at the same time parents should also take precautions to only introduce them to apps that are appropriate for their age.

Here’s a list of apps tailored for a younger audience that your child may find quite enjoyable.

• iLearnWith Poko: Emotions
This app aids kids to recognize various emotions through the help of the characters Poko, Minus, and Bibi. Children are introduced to scenarios that may trigger certain emotions, and are encouraged to think on their own.

• Monster’s Socks
It’s the story of how a cute little monster wakes up one fine morning only to discover that his socks are missing. He then embarks on a quest to find them along with your child’s help, facing many challenges along the way.

• Monsters Inc. Storybook Deluxe
It’s an interactive story-telling app, inclusive of their beloved characters Mike, Sulley and Boo, and an array of fun games. Your child will even be encouraged to ‘Roar’, every now and then for additional points.

• Sendy: Steam-Paint Kids Art
This app encourages creativity with their writing, drawing and story-telling features. Your child can even click a picture and tweak the image with the various stamps and colors available

• Toca Hair Salon 2
Since it was first introduced, the Toca Hair Salon has helped encourage children to get creative with hairstyles, by practicing on the various customers available to them on the app. This time around, you have 2 new customers to experiment on.

• Zachy the Robot: Quest for the Museum Treasures
Join Zachy and embark on a journey to acquire fossils, dinosaurs and minerals from around the world, to help stock up the Robocity museum.

• Barefoot World Atlas
Through this app, your child will be educated on the various cultures around the world, through an interactive 3D globe. They can also view the numerous landmarks all around the world.

• Rocket Speller
Rocket Speller teaches the importance of vocabulary by encouraging them to help Zip the alien launch his rocket by spelling words correctly.

• The Voyage of Ulysses
Embark on a Greek mythological adventure, complete with magic spells and bizarre creatures.

• Cookie Next Door-Rainy Days
Children are encouraged to get creative with their imagination, by allowing them to create their own story, along with included illustrations, and the liberty to add their own voice.

Samsung Galaxy S4 may arrive in 6 Variants

Samsung Galaxy SIVThe company made the Galaxy S4’s existence and launch date official at the annual Mobile World Congress 2013, Barcelona, and as the D-day approaches, fresh rumors on the Samsung’s upcoming smartphone have popped up over the internet. Rumors and speculations on this gadget are not new to us, because over a couple of months the internet has been cramming with rumors on the Galaxy S4. So what do the fresh rumors claim? Read on to find out.

The Rumor:
According to the rumor, the Galaxy S3’s successor will roll out in 6 variants. Pretty much similar to the S3, the device will roll out in two colors – Black and White. And each color will be made available in the market with three different storage capacities. In simple words, Samsung Galaxy S4 with black chassis will roll out with storage spaces 16GB, 32GB and 64GB respectively. The same is the case of Samsung Galaxy S4 with white chassis as well.

Like its earlier iterations, the device is expected to sport an external memory card slot as well, which could be further expanded up to 64GB. So with the S4, storage shouldn’t be a much of a problem. Also, with the number of apps that provide cloud storage services increasingly rolling out by the day, we definitely feel users will not experience any glitches or constraints on storing their personal data.

The Specs:
As of now, no verified specifications about the smartphone is available but if rumors were to be believed, the device will sport the following features and specifications – A 5 inch screen with compatibility towards 1080p display, 2GB of RAM, Qualcomm Snapdragon quad-core processor at 1.7GHz, a 13MP camera behind and a 2MP camera in the front. The device will be powered by the 4.1.2 version of Android Jelly Bean. The high-end smartphone will go one-on-one with the industry giant and the equally powerful Apple iPhone 5.

The device will be unveiled on March 14, 2013, at a public event scheduled at Times Square, New York.

Hands On with Google Chromebook Pixel

Chromebook PixelIf you feel the MacBook Pro with retina display was devoid of any rivals in the market, well, you’re wrong! Just like the way Samsung Galaxy S3 arrived as an answer to its Apple counterpart – the iPhone 5, the Google Chromebook Pixel arrives for the MacBook Pro. But does the all new Chromebook have in it to challenge the retanified Mac? Let’s find out.

The Chromebook Pixel:
Launched on February 21 2013, the Pixel releases as the next installment to the Chromebook series of computing devices. Unlike its previous iteration, the Samsung Chromebook, it is massively priced and sports a high-end display with touch capabilities. And for the first time ever, Google has single-handedly come up with this device without partnering with third party vendors like Acer or Samsung.

The Design & Build:
The device is impressive in terms of its design and build quality. Built over anodized aluminum, the laptop looks lustrous and sleek. It lacks unnecessary designs, logos, vents and screws, giving it a neat and simplified look. Weighing in around 3.5 lbs, it is pretty much comfortable to hold for a while. An elegant light bar rests on the Chromebook’s outer lid, which shows up Google’s traditional colors when turned on, and emanates a bluish-flare up on closing it. With ports for charger, display, headsets and USB ports, the laptop neatly manages to appeal visually.

The Specifications & Functions:
The Pixel sports a screen size of around 12 inches at a pixel density of 239ppi (MacBook – 227ppi). The screen sports touch capabilities, and is one of the best features of the device. With a near-perfect rendition of colors and visuals, Google indeed strikes a chord in terms of its display. Under the hood, the system runs on Intel dual-core i5 processor at 1.8GHz, 4GB of RAM, Intel HD graphics and a storage capacity of 32 or 64GB SSD. Apart from this, a provision to access 1TB of Google’s Cloud services for a period of 3 years is offered to consumers.

When it comes to usability, the device showcases some serious restrictions. Since the OS is web based, users have to rely on online applications to execute some of the essential tasks. While simple tasks like image editing, spreadsheets, documentation can be done using the web apps, high-end tasks like video editing, rendering and other complex multimedia tasks cannot be performed using this. It is purely Google centric, and if you rely on Google’s services to carry out some of your tasks in office or at home, this is the device for you. Also, its battery life is pretty impressive and runs for around a solid 5-6 hours.

The Bottom Line:
The Google Chromebook Pixel is truly a revolutionary device, sporting one of the best displays of all laptops of its cadre. If there is one thing that is negative about the device, it has to be its price. If you can afford it, go for it without second thoughts!