It was certainly a very merry, electronic Xmas. According to a recent Flurry Study, 17.4 million activations took place on December 25 for iOS and Android devices. This was up an incredible 332% increase from the daily December average and more than doubled from last year's total. More tablets were activated on that date than phones and iPads dominated the category. The
KindleFire HD did well, too. Check out the entire survey for more details.
Although they have been around for over a year, there seems to be a plethora of EcoATMs cropping up for those seeking extra holiday cash. The good news - you get cash on the spot even if your cellphone or MP3 payer is broken. The bad news - you need to supply an ID and electronic thumbprint to ensure you are not fencing off something that somehow doesn't belong to you. The eco-minded will be glad to know that they will actually resell your ancient electronics to other vendors or disembowel for recycling.
A Kickstarter light bulb project has been embraced by humans and will soon become reality. Not only can the LIFX be turned on and off with a smartphone, it has a few other tricks it can perform. Alter brightness, create a color scheme or use it to notify you when somebody tweets you or messages from Facebook. The LED bulb saves energy as well as impressing those who clearly will know that you are a great entertainer.
Such a deal! We know that new iPhone 5 is shiny and tempting, but if you prefer Android, you can get a Galaxy S III for $199.99 with a two year contract and activation fee. This is a limited offer and you better act quickly because when this first caught our attention it was $99.00. You do get the luxury of choosing your carrier.
Merchant Customer Exchange has courted the likes of Best Buy, Target and Walmart to bring you simplified smartphone purchasing. The mobile app plans to include rewards like loyalty programs, coupons and rebates. MCX plans to include retailers, restaurants, gas stations and supermarkets in the months to come. This is clearly not the first nor the last company to come up with this plan and it remains to be seen if their efforts are successful.
The latest appliance to make life on the fly easier is the LG Lightwave Oven with time and temperature controlled by smartphone app. Equipped with both a grill and microwave, it uses halogen light technology to cook the food. It can also ferment, toast and be used at a convection oven. At a cost of ~$746.00, for now it is only available in Korea.
It seems there is no end to what the Galaxy S Lightray can do. MetroPCS has teamed with Dyle Mobile TV to bring live, local broadcasts via antenna. The smartphone has a 4.3" AMOLED touchscreen, front and back facing cameras, a 1GH processor and a 16GB SD card to improve its 1.38GB memory. The carrier offers their 4G network with unlimited data access in plans starting at only $40.00 and after purchasing of the smartphone for $459.00, the TV service is free.
AT&T will be carrying the Samsung Galaxy S III in patriotic red, white and blue beginning July 29. They will be handling the scarlet smartphone exclusively in 16GB only while Verizon, Spring and T-Mobile will be carrying 16GB and 32GB white and blue models. With a contract, expect to pay $199.99 per phone that features a 4.8" HD AMOLED display, Android 4.0 OS and an 8MP camera built with facial recognition. Pre-ordering is available now.
The iHome Bluewave Bluetooth Audio Receiver is an adapter that can transform an iPhone dock into a wireless speaker system for Android, Blackberry and Windows Phone. With a simple and quick setup, it automatically turns on when the user comes within 30 feet. Play some tunes and games, check your email and tweet easily with your smartphone. The receiver is available for $39.99, you provide the dock.
Virgin Mobile will be offering Apple's iPhone 4S June 29 on a pre-paid plan. Following the release of the same by Cricket Wireless also this month, the phone itself is offered for $549.00 for 8GB and $649 for 16GB with plans starting at $30.00 monthly. Pricey, but then remember that these smartphones are not under contract. If you so choose to go for the "Big Plan" before July 1, you get a 2GB monthly bonus. Sign up for preorder now.
The Joy Factory offers simplified charging with the ZipMini. Usable for up to four devices, it works by touching your smartphone, tablets, e-reader or other electronics. There are no tangling cords and no power loss since there is a direct plug in by magnetization. The kit comes with a micro USB receiver and Apple 30-pin zip tail connector.
Landlines are becoming a thing of the past as most only use cell/smartphones so AT&T, in an effort to cut costs, has managed to kill white pages in about 75 different markets. While this will not affect yellow pages, areas that approved the changes are required to pay $1.99 (plus air time) for each 411 directory assistance call. Customers can also request a CD-ROM of home listings.
The latest Public Service Commission to consider sending white pages only to those who request them is in Louisiana, who will decide by May 23. At the very least the plan will save a few trees.
By now you have probably heard of Google's Project Glass, their plan to put everything on the web in on your head. This is still in the planning stages and will probably not become reality for at least a year, but the idea is tempting as you can see in the video. The glasses wrap around your forehead and covers one eye so you can multi-task. Using Google maps for directions both indoors and out, sending and receiving messages, playing music and videos and, in general, doing other online activities, seems like a good idea, as long as you aren't driving at the time.
Being a prototype, Google is encouraging comments and suggestions so toss in your two cents on their site and they may just take you up on it.
Because Nokia is launching their Lumia 900 next week, that spells some good deals for some of their other products. For example, their 16GB Factory Unlocked 800 is almost half the original price and has great features like 3.7" Clearblack LCD display, Windows Phone 7.5 Mango, built-in GPS, WiFi Radio, a camera with Carl Zeiss optics and auto focus.