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RumorTT: Supply chain gets orders for parts for 10M iPad minis, according to WSJ

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Oct 8, 2012 4:15 pm

More and more information is continuing to leak out regarding Apple's rumored iPad mini. It seems like Apple just can't keep a secret in the post-Jobs era. The Wall Street Journal is reporting "some component suppliers to Apple in Asia say they have received orders to make more than 10 million units of the smaller tablets in the fourth quarter."




That's a pretty big deal. To put that number in some perspective, Amazon only placed roughly half as many orders for its popular Kindle Fire tablets in the same quarter. This means Apple believes the iPad mini is going to be a hit, and so does nearly everyone else. The only outstanding question is pricing, and this is what will control how big of a hit the iPad mini truly is.


"It makes sense for market leader Apple to extend its dominance in tablets with a smaller tablet,"said Capital Securities analyst Diana Wu. "iPad mini will be a big hit if Apple prices it below $300," said RBS analyst Wanli Wang. The iPad mini will have to compete with the $199 Kindle Fire HD and Google's Nexus 7, also priced at $199.

Lightning to 30-pin adapters begin shipping, enables iPhone5, iPod touch, iPod nano use with old accessories

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Oct 8, 2012 2:20 pm

The new Lightning connector on the iPhone 5 is sleek. It's smaller, thinner, and faster than the old 30-Pin connector that Apple has utilized for years. Even cooler is its ability to be inserted either direction as the port is reversible. There is one downside, however, and that is that your shiny new iPhone or iPod can no longer be used with old accessories.




That's why Apple has created an adapter that converts the old 30-Pin accessories to the new Lightning connector. Unfortunately, Apple missed shipping the new connectors out with the iPhone 5, but they appear to have now managed to get them out the door before the new iPods ship out.


The new adapter is pretty expensive, though this isn't unexpected as it is an Apple product. The cable itself has an authenticator chip which should keep third-party cables from being manufactured, and it wouldn't surprise me if this adapter featured something similar. Once someone gets one in-hand and tears it open, we will know if third-party ones will be able to be made.

iPhone 5 is a hit with Consumers Reports, call it 'the best iPhone 5 yet'

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Oct 8, 2012 11:29 am

The new iPhone 5 really has the human race split - you either passionately love it, or you don't. If you don't love it, you don't need to hate it - you just don't think it's worthy of titles such as 'the best smartphone ever'.




Well, Consumer Reports has come in and said that the iPhone 5 isn't just one of the best smartphones they've ever reviewed, but have called it "the best iPhone yet". I find it hard to disagree, but isn't that the job of Apple? To release a better product? Wouldn't it be just a little strange to see "the best iPhone up until iPhone 4S, where last year's version was better". Uh, yeah.


Consumer Reports' love of the iPhone 5 includes its "larger, 4-inch display", and its "thinner and lighter profile" as well as its "4G LTE access", and that the Cupertino-based company adding "a host of innovative features" make the new iPhone 5 one of the best phones out, and 'the best iPhone yet'.


If you haven't read our review on it, which wasn't so gushing with love, check it out here.

RumorTT: Android 4.2 could be announced later this month

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Operating Systems | Posted: Oct 8, 2012 10:30 am

Android 4.2 rumors are really building up, with all of the news that there's an impending LG-built Nexus-branded phone that is meant to drop later this month and be available next month.




Android 4.2 is beginning to pop up on some logs that are running on current Nexus-branded devices. The new smartphone is reportedly running with a codename of "Occam", with the new tablet codenamed "Manta".


The new Android 4.2-powered devices will have the ability to stream even more content from the Google Play store as well as including a new Customization Cente, which will let users customize both the look and feel of their stock Android device. Out of the rumored features, the one I'm most excited for is something called Project Roadrunner.


Project Roadrunner is said to be focused on improving the battery life of Android 4.2-powered devices through optimizations Google have made in the OS. Google's Jelly Bean-exclusive Project Butter ramped up the OS to 60fps and it felt beautiful. It makes it truly buttery smooth and if Project Roadrunner has the same impact on Android 4.2 as Project Butter did with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean


Hopefully Android 4.2 launches onto more devices at launch than Android 4.1 Jelly Bean did, as the rollout was mostly died to Google and ASUS' release of their Nexus 7 tablet.

Google's AI is getting smarter, hopefully won't take over the world or friend request SkyNet on Facebook

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Cloud Computing | Posted: Oct 8, 2012 9:27 am

Google have been playing with artificial intelligence (AI) for quite a while now, with previous reports and stories of it being able to detect cats in YouTube videos. But now the team is months ahead in their project, where they've been experimenting with different methods and giving it more power.




Google's learning software is all based on simulating groups of connected brain cells, that all communicate and influence each other - which is normally refered to a 'neural network'. When this network is connected to data, the relationships between differing neurons can change. Once this change begins, the network develops new abilities - where it is able to react in different ways to the incoming data, and its new ability is having learnt something.


Learning something for a neural network is the exciting part of it all - and various companies have been playing with this technology for quite a while with the Terminator and Matrix series' famous for making these networks more well-known. Where Google are changing things up is that the Mountain View-based company's engineers have found different ways to put more number-crunching power behind them, creating neural networks that can learn, all without human assistance.

Continue reading 'Google's AI is getting smarter, hopefully won't take over the world or friend request SkyNet on Facebook' (full post)

Android 4.1 Jelly Bean hits some Tegra 3-powered HTC One X smartphones

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Oct 8, 2012 8:31 am

The XDA Developers forums are a godsend to those running Android, with news that some of the members have posted a leaked Jelly Bean ROM for some variants of HTC's One X smartphone.




The leaked ROM is based on the software that will come pre-baked into the company's upcoming HTC One X+, which is Android 4.1.1 with Sense 4+. The leaked ROM is only capable of going on a few phones, which are those running NVIDIA's Tegra 3 SoC with the following CIDs:

  • cidnum: HTC__001
  • cidnum: HTC__E11
  • cidnum: HTC__203
  • cidnum: HTC__102
  • cidnum: HTC__405
  • cidnum: HTC__Y13
  • cidnum: HTC__A07
  • cidnum: HTC__304
  • cidnum: HTC__M27
  • cidnum: HTC__032
  • cidnum: HTC__016
  • cidnum: HTC__J15


If your device sports one of the above CIDs, you might want to hit it up - Jelly Bean is delicious.

Google & LG set to unveil the next Nexus smartphone before the end of the month

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Oct 8, 2012 7:27 am

We've been hearing more and more about Google wanting a new Nexus smartphone, and it looks as though LG will be the one making it. CNET are reporting this time that the new Nexus phone will indeed be released by LG, and that it'll be announced by the end of this month.




The new LG Nexus smartphone will run with some of the same innards of LG's recently-launched Optimus G smartphone, but modified to comply with the Nexus program. CNET reports that there's no name for it, but we did hear a few hours ago that it'll be known as the Optimus G Nexus. I would prefer 'Optimus Nexus'.


We should expect LG's Nexus smartphone to sport Qualcomm's Snapdragon quad-core processor, 2GB of RAM, a 1280x720 True-HD IPS display, an 8-megapixel rear-snapper, a non-removeable (boo!) battery, and a choice between 8GB and 16GB of on-board storage, with no expandable microSD options (boo!).

The first year-long mission on the International Space Station is set to happen in 2015 with Russian and American astronauts

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Oct 8, 2012 6:31 am

Something I don't think I could ever do without half pissing my pants would be to spend twelve months up on the International Space Station (ISS). At the moment, there's an enforced six-month maximum stay on the ISS, but all this changes in 2015.




In 2015, the maximum stay will increase to twelve months, where one Russian and one American will spend an entire year on the ISS. The mission is to help collect more data to help us work out a way of completing deep space travel.


There's already been plenty of data collected, mainly about the effects microgravity has on the human body, but because of the six-month only stays, there's not much information on long-term implications on the human body. Michael Suffredini, International Space Station program manager says:


In order for us to eventually move beyond low Earth orbit, we need to better understand how humans adapt to long-term spaceflight. The space station serves as a vital scientific resource for teaching us those lessons, and this yearlong expedition aboard the complex will help us move closer to those journeys.

Apple comment on iPhone 5 camera and its purple haze issue

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Oct 8, 2012 5:35 am

The new iPhone 5 is far from perfect, but there have been some issues with the camera on this model. If you've used an iPhone 5, read our review, or read many of the other reviews out there, you'd have seen that the iPhone 5 has an issue when snapping photos.




The iPhone 5, when held at the right angle and near the right light source, will give off a purple haze on the photo. It's not a deal breaker, but it's something worth noting when buying (or reviewing) a device like this. Apple have come out over the weekend, posting a support notice for it, stating:



A purplish or other colored flare, haze, or spot is imaged from out-of-scene bright light sources during still image or video capture.



Most small cameras, including those in every generation of iPhone, may exhibit some form of flare at the edge of the frame when capturing an image with out-of-scene light sources. This can happen when a light source is positioned at an angle (usually just outside the field of view) so that it causes a reflection off the surfaces inside the camera module and onto the camera sensor. Moving the camera slightly to change the position at which the bright light is entering the lens, or shielding the lens with your hand, should minimize or eliminate the effect.

Continue reading 'Apple comment on iPhone 5 camera and its purple haze issue' (full post)

iCloud customers get a nice surprise over the weekend

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Cloud Computing | Posted: Oct 8, 2012 4:31 am

Over the weekend, it seems Apple was feeling a little generous - they extended their additional storage offer until September 30, 2013. Originally, this offer was made to customers making the transition from MobileMe to iCloud.




At the time, they'd offer the normal 5GB that comes with iCloud to ease this move, and it was set to expire on September 30, 2012. But, Apple have been sending out e-mails to their customers informing them that this would be extended until September 30, 2013.


Nothing is required to take advantage of this, so if you were still wondering whether you should make the move or not, you now have another twelve months to scratch that noggin' of yours. Thanks Lee for sending this in!

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