Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Sixteen (16) Universal Laws: What do you know about them?

Universal_laws

Law of Mechanical Repair – After your hands become coated with grease, your nose will begin to itch and you’ll have to pee.

Law of Gravity – Any tool, nut, bolt, screw, when dropped, will roll to the least accessible corner.

Law of Probability -The probability of being watched is directly proportional to the stupidity of your act.

Law of Random Numbers – If you dial a wrong number, you never get a busy signal and someone always answers.

Law of the Alibi – If you tell the boss you were late for work because you had a flat tire, the very next morning you will have a flat tire.

Variation Law – If you change lines (or traffic lanes), the one you were in will always move faster than the one you are in now (works every time).

Law of the Bath – When the body is fully immersed in water, the telephone rings.

Law of Close Encounters -The probability of meeting someone you know increases dramatically when you are with someone you don’t want to be seen with.

Law of the Result – When you try to prove to someone that a machine won’t work, it will..

Law of Biomechanics – The severity of the itch is inversely proportional to the reach.

Law of the Theater and Hockey Arena – At any event, the people whose seats are furthest from the aisle arrive last and they are the ones who will leave their seats several times to go for food, beer, or the toilet and who leave early before the end of the performance or the game is over. While those in the aisle seats come early, never move once, have long gangly legs or big bellies and who stay to the bitter end of the performance and beyond. The aisle people also are very surly folk.

The Starbucks Law – As soon as you sit down to a cup of hot coffee, your boss will ask you to do something which will last until the coffee is cold.

Murphy’s Law of Lockers – If there are only two people in a locker room, they will have adjacent lockers.

Law of Logical Argument – Anything is possible if you don’t know what you are talking about.

Wilson’s Law of Commercial Marketing Strategy
 – As soon as you find a product that you really like, they will stop making it.

Doctors’ Law – If you don’t feel well, make an appointment to go to the doctor, by the time you get there you’ll feel better. Don’t make an appointment and you’ll stay sick.

This post sponsored by:
Dr Mobiles Limited
1 Huron Street, Takapuna, North Shore 0622
Tel: (09) 551-5344 and Mob: (021) 264-0000
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Oh, how sweet it is for the little boy feeding his puppy!

This post sponsored by:
Dr Mobiles Limited
1 Huron Street, Takapuna, North Shore 0622
Tel: (09) 551-5344 and Mob: (021) 264-0000
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Google Plus can reach 400 million users in 2012, already has 62 million says unofficial statistician

Google may have finally found a solution to the social networking problem that has eluded them for years – Google Plus is populated by 62 million users and will hit 400 million by the end of 2012, according to self-proclaimed “unofficial statistician” Paul Allen (no, not that Paul Allen).

The last official figure we got was 40 million users, but that was way back in October. Allen’s estimates put the growth rate of Google Plus at 625,000 new users per day. At this rate, Google Plus will hit the 100 million users mark before the end of February and 200 million in August.

By end of the 2012 that number grows to 293 million. But Paul Allen bets the number of newcomers per day will increase, so Google Plus will actually have 400 million users by the end of next year.

Now, Allen may have a tendency to overestimate the number of users – for example, hereported 50 million users at the end of September, then in October Google came out with anofficial number of 40 million.

Still, if Google manages to attract even just 200 million users to its social network in less than two years, it will be an amazing feat. It took Facebook about 4 years to hit that mark in April 2009 (though they’ve grown to 800 million since then).


This post sponsored by:
Dr Mobiles Limited
1 Huron Street, Takapuna, North Shore 0622
Tel: (09) 551-5344 and Mob: (021) 264-0000
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Welcome to the 4G World: HTC Vivid Review (Google, Android, Repair, Unlocking, North Shore, Takapuna)

The final member of AT&T’s LTE smartphone 2011 lineup is at the start line, ready to impress. The HTC Vivid is joining the company of the Samsung Galaxy S II Skyrocket and LG Nitro HD in a bid to defend the reputation of the Taiwanese company.

HTC Vivid HTC Vivid HTC Vivid HTC Vivid 
HTC Vivid official photos

Hardware wise, the HTC Vivid is a familiar sight. The smartphone is essentially put together from the parts’ bin of the HTC Sensation 4G and HTC EVO 3D, save for its 4.5“ screen and beefed up built-in memory - it packs a well familiar dual-core CPU, clocked at 1.2GHz and a Snapdragon S3 chipset.

We do suspect that HTC has intentionally omitted features such as an HD screen and a beefed up CPU in order to maintain the flagship status of the Beats Audio sporting, HTC Rezound for Verizon Wireless. Thankfully, the Vivid is priced accordingly as well.

Key features

  • Quad-band GSM and tri-band 3G support
  • 21 Mbps HSDPA and 5.76 Mbps HSUPA
  • LTE network compatibility
  • 4.5" capacitive LCD touchscreen with qHD resolution (540 x 960 pixels); Gorilla glass
  • Android OS v2.3.4 Gingerbread with HTC Sense 3.0
  • 1.2 GHz dual Scorpion CPUs, Qualcomm Snapdragon S3 chipset
  • 1GB RAM and 16 GB built-in storage; microSD slot up to 32GB
  • 8 MP autofocus camera with LED flash; 1.3MP front-facing unit
  • 1080p and 720p video recording
  • Wi-Fi b/g/n and DLNA
  • GPS with A-GPS
  • Stereo FM radio with RDS
  • Accelerometer, proximity sensor and an auto-brightness sensor
  • Standard 3.5 mm audio jack (SRS enhancement)
  • microUSB port (charging) and stereo Bluetooth v3.0
  • MHL TV-out (requires MHL-to-HDMI adapter)
  • Smart dialing, voice dialing
  • DivX/XviD video support
  • HTCSense.com integration
  • HTC Portable Hotspot
  • Office document editor

Main Disadvantages

  • Screen performance is not on par with the best offerings
  • At 177 grams, the device is downright heavy
  • The glossy finish plastic is fingerprint and dust magnet; especially on the black version
  • No dedicated camera button

As you can notice above, the spec sheet of the HTC Vivid is mostly a familiar sight. HTC have grown the screen to put it in line with the rest of the LTE offerings from AT&T.

We are not sure however, how the feeling of familiarity will bode for the smartphone – it simply does not feel like a brand new product. It is the end of 2011 now – a good eight months since HTC took the wraps off the similarly equipped Sensation 4G.

HTC Vivid HTC Vivid 
HTC Vivid live shots

We are now going to try and find out whether the HTC has what it takes to sway potential consumers away from the impressive Samsung and LG offerings.

A stripped-down retail package

In the relatively big retail box of the HTC Vivid, you will find nothing but a microUSB cable and a charger, which are being kept company by a couple of booklets.

HTC Vivid 
The retail package is modest to say the least

While we are willing to overlook the memory card omission (the HTC Vivid packs plenty of built-in storage), we can’t help but wonder for the reason why the headphones were omitted.

Design and build quality

The HTC Vivid surely isn’t a design statement. The smartphone is certainly not the best looking offering we’ve seen from the Taiwanese company. It does however, look unmistakably like an HTC and we believe that this fact will appeal to plenty of people.

The build quality of the smartphone is solid. Unfortunately, we cannot say the same about the choice of materials. The HTC Vivid is predominantly dressed in glossy plastic. While we didn’t find any flaws in its quality, it proved to be a massive dust and fingerprint magnet – that was especially the case with our black review unit.

This is highly unusual showing for HTC. We were always impressed by the materials and their implementation on the actual devices. Sadly, this is not the case with the HTC Vivid.

The measures of the HTC Vivid are 128.8 x 67.1 x 11.2 mm, while its weight is the whopping 177 grams. The smartphone is certainly not the most pocket-friendly offering you will encounter – even among the 4.5” Android devices. Once again however, this has never been an issue for the HTC loving crowd.

HTC Vivid 
HTC Vivid measured against Samsung Galaxy Nexus

The smartphone is available in black and white color schemes – a fact, which should help it appeal to a seriously wide audience.

The 4.5” LCD screen of the HTC Vivid has the familiar qHD resolution. The display has the flaws of all its predecessors to date. Its viewing angles and outdoor legibility simply do not cut it in this price range. The unit is no match for the Galaxy S II’s Super AMOLED Plus unit or the award winning AH-IPS screen of the LG Nitro HD.

HTC Vivid HTC Vivid HTC Vivid 
The screen of the HTC Vivid leaves a lot to be desired • next to Galaxy Nexus’s Super AMOLED unit

Below the screen are the typical four touch-sensitive buttons. Above the display is where the earpiece, ambient light and proximity sensors, the LED notification light, and front-facing camera unit can be found.

HTC Vivid HTC Vivid 
The view below and above the display of the HTC Vivid

There is nothing but the microUSB port on the left side of the smartphone. On the right is where the volume rocker resides.

HTC Vivid HTC Vivid HTC Vivid 
The microUSB port on the left • the volume rocker on the right

The power/lock key and the 3.5mm audio jack keep each other company on top of the HTC Vivid. There is nothing but a mouthpiece on the bottom of the device.

HTC Vivid HTC Vivid 
No surprises on the top of the device • the mouthpiece on the bottom

The back of the HTC Vivid is covered by a great looking, matte black metal cover, which has tiny dots etched to it to give it texture. There, you will find the 8MP shooter with its LED flash, as well as the speaker grille.

HTC Vivid 
The back of the device looks great

There are no surprises under the battery cover of the HTC Vivid. The SIM card and microSD card slots are not hot-swappable.

HTC Vivid HTC Vivid 
Typical sight under the battery cover

The 1620mAh battery of the HTC Vivid, despite appearing modest in capacity, achieved impressive overall score in our battery test. It needed a recharge every 42 hours when used for an hour each of phone calls, web browsing, and video playback. 

The smartphone handled well for its size. It is narrower than a Galaxy S II Skyrocket for example, so even single-handed operation is possible.

HTC Vivid HTC Vivid 
The phone handles well for its size

Overall, we came out fairly disappointed from both the design and the build quality of the HTC Vivid. We do not recall when the last time we had such feelings for an HTC made handset was – they have always been among the benchmarks for high quality materials and solid feel. The glossy plastic of the Vivid however, is too much to handle. It collects dust and fingerprints, while looking seriously cheap - a really annoying combination.

Following next is a look at the software department of the HTC Vivid. There are less unpleasant surprises to be had here, as we’ve seen it on previous HTC smartphones.
_life
 

This post sponsored by:
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Tel: (09) 551-5344 and Mob: (021) 264-0000
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Google Plus, Google+ Short URL for Dr Mobiles Limited - Apple iPhone 4S Unlock, Repair, Vodafone Austrralia

We have just created our short URL for our Google+ Link.

_gplus_to_drmobiles

This is the original site:
https://plus.google.com/u/0/114570291296535147252/posts  

This is the short URL:
http://gplus.to/drmobiles 

This post sponsored by:
Dr Mobiles Limited
1 Huron Street, Takapuna, North Shore 0622
Tel: (09) 551-5344 and Mob: (021) 264-0000
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Unofficial News of Apple iPhone: New Generation Design during Fall 2012? (tech, news, rumors, leaked, preview, "David Lim"

It was just a couple of months ago that the iPhone 4S was launched and the rumors for the next iPhone have already started crawling out of the woodwork. This newest one is courtesy BGR, who reports that they have heard from a close source that the next generation iPhone will launch in fall of 2012, which around the same time the 4S was released.

They also have information about the design, which is said to be completely new. The next iPhone will have an all-aluminum back which will be mated to the front glass surface by a combination of rubber and plastic sides, which is also where the antenna system will reside.

The shift to aluminum seems logical since the iPhone is the only Apple product to not use it in the construction of the device. Of course, aluminum will block the transmission and reception of signal, so the sides had to be made with a non-interfering material such as plastic or rubber.

We'd like to say we'll find out soon if this information is correct or not but there is still almost an entire year to go before the next iPhone comes out.

This post sponsored by:
Dr Mobiles Limited
1 Huron Street, Takapuna, North Shore 0622
Tel: (09) 551-5344 and Mob: (021) 264-0000
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China Mobile Review: The Astonishing Meizu MX (tech, blog, news, update, Smartphone, Repair)

This is easily a phone you can pretend doesn't exist. And you don't have to try too hard either. The Meizu MX is something of a chimera. An iPhone body and a droid mind. It's not where you take things from - it's where you take them to. For a phone coming from China, the Meizu MX has no qualms with imitation. But it's not a characterless low-cost replica either.

Strictly speaking, the Meizu MX is an Android smartphone, but it goes to great lengths to emulate the Apple iPhone in its strengths and even some of its failings. The result is a unique Android experience that differs from iOS as well - it's a very curious device, the Meizu MX.

Meizu MX Meizu MX Meizu MX
Meizu MX official photos

It's hard to deny that the Chinese company went all out loading up the MX for a fight. The phone packs a 4.0" ASV LCD screen of 640 x 960 pixel resolution (the same res as the iPhone 4/4S) and an Exynos chipset straight from the Samsung Galaxy Note (a tad faster than the one in the Galaxy S II).

Impressive stuff for sure, at least when you read the features off the specs sheet. Here are the rest of them, plus the disadvantages we found:

Key features

  • Quad-band GSM and penta-band 3G support
  • 21.6 Mbps HSDPA and 5.76 Mbps HSUPA
  • 4.0" 16M-color ASV capacitive touchscreen with 640 x 960 pixels resolution
  • Heavily skinned Android OS v2.3.5 ("Flyme OS")
  • 1.4 GHz dual-core Cortex-A9 CPU (currently at 1.2GHz), Mali-400MP GPU, Exynos chipset, 1GB of RAM
  • 8 MP wide-angle autofocus camera with LED flash, face and smile detection; Wide Dynamic Mode
  • Up to 1080p video recording @ 30fps
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b, g and n support; Wi-Fi hotspot
  • GPS with A-GPS connectivity; Digital compass
  • 16GB of internal storage
  • Accelerometer, gyroscope and proximity sensor
  • Charging MHL microUSB port with USB host, TV-out support (1080p via an optional adapter) and S/PDIF-out for dock connection
  • Standard 3.5 mm audio jack
  • Stereo Bluetooth v2.1
  • Active noise cancellation with dedicated mic
  • VGA secondary video-call camera
  • Full Flash support
  • Document viewer
  • File manager comes preinstalled
  • Extremely rich audio and video format support
  • Beefy 1600 mAh battery

Main disadvantages

  • Looks too much like an iPhone knockoff
  • microSIM card support only
  • Sub-par viewing angles and sunlight legibility
  • Plastic finish of questionable quality
  • No dedicated camera key (volume rocker doesn’t quite cut it)
  • Non-expandable internal storage
  • Battery not user replaceable
  • No FM radio

It's not all perfect, but the Meizu MX can certainly go against a lot of Android flagships and show them a thing or two. But can it match the highly polished iOS experience and the trend-setting iPhone hardware?

Tough question. After using the MX for a while, you get the feeling that Meizu went trough the trouble of emulating even the downsides of the iPhone. But then you notice things that you wish iOS and vanilla Android had. The same goes for some areas of the hardware.

Meizu MX Meizu MX Meizu MX Meizu MX 
Meizu MX in our office

We're still not quite sure what to make of the Meizu MX, so this will be an interesting journey. Just try to approach it with an open mind, if you dismiss it as yet another replica, you'll miss out on an impressive (if derivative) device.

Unboxing an engineering sample box

What we have in our office is an engineering sample, which means that this isn't the retail box. Still, it should contain the same things, so here we go.

There were no surprises here really. There's a compact charger with a USB port, which is where the provided microUSB cable plugs in to charge the phone. There's also a microSIM adapter, so you can use your card from the Meizu MX in other phones easily.

Meizu MX Meizu MX 
A charger, USB cable and a microSIM adapter came in the box

We're not sure if there's going to be a headset in the retail box. No one seems to have one yet, so we'll have to wait for the answer of this mystery.

The Meizu MX measures 121.1 x 63.3 x 10.3 mm, which is roughly the same as the Samsung Galaxy S and slightly bigger than an iPhone 4/4S. The MX weighs 139 g.

Hardware and build quality

The Meizu MX has a strong, undeniable resemblance to the iPhone - at least when you view it head on. Whether or not that resemblance was intentional doesn’t matter as differences become apparent as soon as you turn the phone over.

The MX's outer shell is made entirely of plastic and we have to say we're not big fans of it. The screen is a fingerprint magnet, while the white battery cover is much better. Still, the glossy plastic there isn't particularly pleasant to the touch.

Meizu MX Meizu MX Meizu MX 
The Meizu MX is styled to look like an iPhone, or at least its front is

The beveled edges of the back are an instant giveaway that you're dealing with something other than an iPhone 4 or 4S. There's little chance of mistaking it for a 3G/3GS either - the camera placement is very different and there's no Apple logo, of course.

The front of the device is rather iPhone-like as we said, but the 4" screen is noticeably bigger than the Retina display even if you don't have the two side by side for direct comparison.

The 640x960 pixel resolution is slightly higher than most competing droids (save for the ones with 720p screens) and with a pixel density of 288ppi it's really sharp-looking.

Meizu MX 
The screen is good on paper, but viewing angles could have been better

It's an ASV LCD unit, which in theory should provide great viewing angles, although the reality is different. Contrast loss becomes very noticeable as soon as you start turning the screen. Depending on the angle you tilt it, there's even a prominent color shift - grey turns to yellow pretty quickly.

Colors are nothing to write home about and the maximum bright ness of the screen left us wanting. Here are the brightness and contrast measurements for the display.

Display test 50% brightness 100% brightness
Black, cd/m2 White, cd/m2 Contrast ratio Black, cd/m2 White, cd/m2 Contrast ratio
HTC Salasa 0.26 167 653 0.52 309 593
Meizu MX 0.17 123 740 0.56 396 708
HTC Sensation 0.21 173 809 0.61 438 720
HTC Sensation XE 0.23 172 761 0.64 484 752
Samsung Galaxy W I8150 0.29 243 853 0.50 423 853
HTC Titan 0.26 233 891 0.56 567 1007
Motorola RAZR XT910 0 215 0 361
Samsung I9100 Galaxy S II 0 231 0 362
Apple iPhone 4S 0.14 205 1463 0.52 654 1261


Moving on to the other interesting features on the front, we have a narrow slit for the earpiece and a tiny, tiny video-call camera next to it, both sitting above the screen. Ambient light and proximity sensors are also here.

Meizu MX 
Earpiece and video-call camera along with the proximity and ambient light sensors

Below the screen is where it gets interesting - the central Home key is small and rounded, protruding from the surface. That makes it easy to find by touch and it's fairly comfortable to hit, despite its small size.

On either side of it are the two capacitive soft keys. They are rather special - a patent by Meizu actually. The context aware keys change appearance and function depending on what's happening on the screen.

The left one is typically a Back key and shows a < symbol but switches to a single dot when there's nothing to come back from (it serves as a lock key in this situation, it takes a press and hold to lock).

Meizu MX 
The situation-aware capacitive keys are patented by Meizu

The right one spends most of the time as a Menu key (displaying ...) but turns into a single dot when there's no context menu available. Here it gets slightly confusing - this dot won't lock the phone if you press and hold it. Instead, it launches a heavily customized task switcher. That also works when there's a context menu - again, you press and hold to activate the task switcher.

That's not all for the soft key tricks though - the capacitive controls are haptic enabled and they actually rotate their icons to match the orientation of the screen. Also, you can adjust the brightness of their backlighting individually from the screen and when you tap a key, it pulses brighter (even if they're at the brightest setting).

Now, such keys may not seem like much, but Meizu's implementation is really cool (and one of the highlights of the MX), so we wanted to cover them in detail. You can see them on video in the User interface section of this review.

The rest of the tour will go pretty quick. The left side houses the volume keys while the right side is bare. The volume rocker is really uncomfortable - thin and quite flat.

At the top are the Power/Lock key, the 3.5mm audio jack and the secondary microphone for noise-cancellation.

Meizu MX Meizu MX 
Power/Lock key, 3.5mm audio jack and the secondary microphone

The bottom is home to the microUSB port and primary microphone along with two connectors that are most likely for the dock. The microUSB port serves many duties - data connection to a computer, charging, HD TV-Out over a MHL link and S/PDIF.

Meizu MX Meizu MX 
The microUSB port has a lot of duties

The dock sounds interesting, but there's not much info on it at the time of writing. S/PDIF is a common way to stream multi-channel digital audio, commonly found in home theater systems. If it can coexist with MHL, the Meizu MX combined with the dock can be an excellent media player option. We'll know more once details about the dock become available.

The back of the Meizu MX features the 8MP camera lens with an LED flash right next to it. The loudspeaker is also here, located at the sloping edge of the back. The loudspeaker doesn’t get muffled, but you should be careful with the camera - it can get scratched and is usually covered in fingerprints.

Meizu MX Meizu MX Meizu MX 
The back features the 8MP camera with LED flash along with the loudspeaker

The back cover can be popped open to reveal the microSIM card slot, which uses a metal tray to get the card in and out easier. You can also see the battery, but it's not user replaceable (not easily anyway), as it's wired. The battery is a 1600mAh Li-Po unit.

Meizu MX Meizu MX 
The non-removable battery • The microSIM card tray

The Meizu MX is comfortable to hold in the hand - it's not too big, too heavy or too thick. We wish the exterior was made of better looking plastic, but if you can get over that (or are going to use a case/pouch) there are no complaints about the build quality.

Meizu MX Meizu MX 
Meizu MX in the hand

While it has its flaws, the hardware of the MX has a few tricks that can get the attention of serious buyers. Let's see if the software holds up this well - on to the interface section of this review, followed by some Exynos 4210 benchmarking.

This post sponsored by:
Dr Mobiles Limited
1 Huron Street, Takapuna, North Shore 0622
Tel: (09) 551-5344 and Mob: (021) 264-0000
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