NEWSFLASH: Samsung’s 8 Inch Slate to Hit the Market

In today’s modern age, the greatest asset that the economy has are people. And how effective people are at their contribution to the economy is dictated by how much resources they have at their disposal. The essence of time and efficiency is highly valued, and modern day gadgets like smartphones and tablets are helpful to today’s businessman.

Recently, Samsung has unveiled the new Galaxy Note 8.0 at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, which is what some may call, the best of both worlds. It is both a smartphone and a tablet, and even though Samsung has chosen to delve away from the common 7-inch screen that most tablets on the market seem to prefer, it still manages to be bigger that the 7.9-inch screen that comprise Apple’s iPad Mini.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0

Running on Andriod 4.1.2 Jelly Bean, the Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 features the Samsung TouchWiz user interface. With a 1280×800 resolution and a widescreen TFT LCD display, this marvelous device measures 8 inches diagonally, which is more or less the same as the Note II. The Galaxy Note 8.0 comes with a stylus, and although it hasn’t exactly captured the appeal of Americans, it seems to be quite popular in Europe and Asia.

The heart of the Galaxy Note 8.0 is a 1.6Hz quad-core processor with 2 GB of RAM, which is available in either 16 GB or 32 GB of internal storage. Your final choice won’t cause any setback though, since both versions support microSD cards. Additionally, this latest from Samsung features 2 cameras, which are forward-facing and 5-megapixel and can record 1080p HD video. A 1.3 megapixel front camera for video chat puts the icing on the cake.

Want a strawberry on top of that icing? The Galaxy Note 8.0 supports various wireless options, such as WiFi, GPS, NFC, GLONASS, and Bluetooth. There will be an LTE version, which will allow it to be utilized as a dedicated smartphone. Still not enough information? Maybe it’s time for you to visit your trusty online store.

The combination of a phone and a tablet seems to be something that would come out of a movie. The ever-handy communicator of the science fiction genre is quite similar to a Skype video call on the Galaxy Note 8.0, which is something that a Bond villain would love to utilize. There might just be a slight learning curve to this since people may need some time to adjust in making calls on an 8-inch phone.

Now, all of the features of the Galaxy Note 8.0 seems to be quite what is needed to compete with Apple’s iPad Mini, but all of its features may also create confusion to users on what it really is. The question still remains as whether it could initiate a new wireless revolution. At the moment, Apple seems to have a firm grip on the tablet market, and much larger screen size may not be enough to oust Apple from their throne, but then again, we have experienced a lot of shifts over the years, most of which have very much surprised us.

In conclusion, the release of the Galaxy Note 8.0 shows that innovation is not dead; something that is already efficient can indeed be made more efficient, if there ever was a term as “more efficient”.

How MyPhone Android Phones Slowly Creeps Marketshare Against Samsung

As the Philippines was once known as the texting capital of the world, it is not that surprising that Filipinos are able to develop their very own smartphone that can compete with well-known brands. MyPhone was launched on Spetember 2007, and since its introduction, it has brought the joys of owning an mobile phone to every Filipino. August 2012 marked the release of a 1GHz Android Dual-SIM smartphone, the A858 Duo, to the public, which gave people a chance to own a quality smartphone at a very reasonable price.

Before we go on any further, let’s conduct a quick background check. Solid Group, Inc, the name behind the MyPhone brand, pocketed PHP 2 billion in unit sales for the year 2010, reflecting a 9-fold sales increase from 2009. As of 2011, MyPhone holds as much as 40% of the Philippines’ mobile phone market, and with the introduction of newer Android models that are more affordable than established brands, such as Samsung, we can expect their sale to increase even further this 2013. And as Android gradually climbs to the top of the mobile operating system leaderboards, the future numbers for MyPhone are looking high and bright.

Samsung unveiled the Galaxy S4 to kick-start the second quarter of 2013, and although the specifications of this device is truly amazing, one has to consider whether it will have any impact on the Philippine smartphone market. One has to admit that the price range between MyPhone and Samsung are worlds apart. For the price of one Samsung Galaxy S3, one can buy 2 MyPhone smartphones with almost the same specifications and features. So, not everyone will be able to afford Samsung’s latest products, which cannot be said for the products of MyPhone. Consider, for example, the A919 Duo that was released in November of last year.

MyPhone A919 Duo

MyPhone A919 Duo Detailed Specifications:

  • 1GHz dual-core MediaTek MT6577 processor
  • PowerVR SGX531 GPU
  • 512MB RAM / 4GB ROM / microSD up to 32GB
  • 8MP autofocus camera with dual LED flash & 720p HD video recording
  • VGA (0.3MP) front camera
  • 5.0-inch FWVGA (854 x 480) IPS Capacitive Display, 16M colors (196ppi) with 5-point multi-touch feature
  • Android 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich)
  • HSDPA: 7.2Mbps, HSUPA: 5.76Mbps
  • WiFI 802.11b/g/n, WiFi Direct, WiFi HotSpot
  • Bluetooth v3.0 with A2DP
  • GPS with A-GPS support
  • MicroUSB v2.0 (USB-OTG support) / 3.5mm audio jack / TV-Out / FM Radio
  • Accelerometer / Proximity / Gravity / Environment Light Sensor
  • 2,000mAh Li-Ion battery

Overall, the specs for the A919 duo are pretty decent for that time. Additionally, MyPhone has officially delved into the tablet industry in its release of Android run tablets that can probably compete with Apple’s iPad in terms of sales in the Philippines. But then again, it is still too early to make such statements.

It really is amazing as to how MyPhone is able to compete with powerhouses such as Samsung. But what is even more astonishing is that, for such a low price tag, MyPhone has never sacrificed quality.

New Firefox Mobile OS to Battle against Android and Apple

Mozilla’s first attempt in attaining fame in the Mobile OS sector has yielded great results. The Firefox OS has now become one of the most liked Mobile Operating Systems, placing the iOS and Android in considerable danger. The introduction of this state-of-the-art device, which is more intuitive and easier-to-use, should completely change the way how people use their smartphones.

The Firefox Mobile OS is based on the open web source, which allows for the usage of HTML5-based apps browser. According to Mozilla:

“Firefox phones will be the world’s first open web devices.”

Furthermore, the Firefox OS is available for FREE to mobile manufacturers. This is one of those factors that’s going to cause a few troubles amongst the current Mobile OS giants: the iOS and Android.

Mr. Tony Cripps, the Ovum analyst declared:

“Firefox OS has achieved something that no device software platform has previously managed.”

He further explained that the Firefox OS is “translating an industry talking shop into a huge commitment from both carriers and hardware vendors at its commercial launch”.

Mozilla Firefox Mobile OS

As per the current situation and future assumptions, Mozilla has clear plans to grab up to 85% of the market share of iOS and Android.

Mozilla’s statement regarding its Mobile OS:

“Firefox OS smartphones are the first built entirely to open web standards, enabling every feature to be developed as an HTML5 application,”

“Web apps access every underlying capability of the device, bypassing the typical hindrances of HTML5 on mobile to deliver substantial performance. The platform’s flexibility allows carriers to easily tailor the interface and develop localized services that match the unique needs of their customer base.”

“Most mobile apps are built with web technologies at the core, and then wrapped in a proprietary technology to distribute the app on a specific platform,” the foundation added. “Mozilla is unlocking the web as a mobile development platform with Firefox Marketplace and unwrapping mobile apps to enable more opportunity and control for developers and consumers”

According to Mozilla, some of its new features involve intuitive search features, which includes integration with Facebook and Twitter, the flagship of the social media universe.

“Firefox OS includes all the things people need from a smartphone out of the box — calls, messaging, email, camera, and more — as well as the things you wish a smartphone offered, like built-in cost controls, social features with Facebook and Twitter, location-based services, much-loved features like the Firefox web browser, new ability to discover one-time use and downloadable apps, Firefox Marketplace, and much more.”

What’s interesting about Mozilla’s marketing plan is its intention to launch its OS smartphones (1) in markets where the iOS and Android are least popular and (2) in countries that are most excited for open web standards messaging. Markets that get to experience the Firefox OS smartphones are the following: Brazil, Colombia, Hungary, Mexico, Montenegro, Poland, Serbia, Spain, and Venezuela.

Play Station 4 Teaser Released

Play Station 4 Controller

The 4th-gen PlayStation console is just at the horizon and Sony has already publicized a teaser video to entice the millions of gamers who are eagerly anticipating its release. If you ask me, I am very pleased with the teaser even though some of its new features has somewhat made me kind of anxious. But enough of my opinion. Did you know that the official PlayStation 4 teaser remains to be one of the most viewed videos on YouTube since it was uploaded on February 20? The publicity is off the charts, literally.

With almost 28 million views, PlayStation 4’s teaser managed to grab more attention than any other video on YouTube. This is a huge achievement. Just to further heighten your anticipation for this console juggernaut, here’s a list of games that will make their debut at the PlayStation 4:

  • Assassins Creed IV: Black Flag
  • Killzone: Shadow Fall
  • Battlefield 4
  • Knack
  • Starwars 1313
  • The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
  • Watch Dogs
  • Super Elite III

Release Date and Pricing

Sony has yet to make an official release regarding this statement, although word has been going around that the price will range from $350 – $450. As for the release date, it’s been said that the PS4 will officially hit mall shelves and online stores just before families start setting up their tables for Thanksgiving Dinner.

In the meantime, as we press on with our wait, go ahead and take a quick look at the teaser video after the jump and make sure that you drop your opinions in the comment box.

Onda v812 vs. Ipad 3

In the universe of innovative tablets, the Apple iPad continues to be the top brand in the market. However, in terms of features and specifications, the latest iPad has come to a stiff competition courtesy of the Onda v812, a new tablet by Onda that seems to one-up every hardware specification of the iPad 3, and then some. Also, it’s an Android tablet, which is a plus for a lot of people due to the operating system’s affinity for open source software, as opposed to the Apple iOS.

The Onda v812 runs on Android Jelly Bean 4.1.1 and can be updated to 4.2, allowing you to make use of the latest apps. It is powered by an All Winner A31 Quad Core ARM Cortex-A7 with 1.2 GHz per core and a 1MB L2 Cache, which is much more powerful than the CPU in the iPad 3. The RAM is also superior with 2 gigabytes of DDR3, twice that of the iPad 3. You get 16 gigabytes of internal storage and an expandable memory slot that supports SD cards up to 32 gigabytes for a potential total of 48 gigabytes.

Onda V812

Like the iPad 3, the Onda is encased in an aluminum shell, which is way better than a lot of plastic-dependent tablets out there. You also get a Power VR SGX544MP2 8-core graphics processor, which gets you 90% of the performance you can get from the iPad 3. This is all topped off with full DX9, OpenGL, and OpenCL support. The mentioned features may seem not as good as the iPad 3, but you’re more certain that graphics performance is not bottlenecked by the memory and processing power of the hardware, which may be the case for the iPad 3.

The 8-inch tablet is also smaller and more lightweight. For all intents and purposes, the smaller screen is not a detriment for its purpose as it can be both a multimedia device and a handheld gaming console without being too inconvenient in size. You can also make better use of the dual camera setup available here, which lets you take pictures more quickly and easily.

The Onda v812 has a 5-point capacitive touch screen that creates more functionalities with various apps that may make use of the multi-touch feature. You can connect this device with an 802.11n wi-fi for greater range and connectivity, as well as a USB 3.0 for really fast file transfers. As far as consumer interest goes, the Onda seems like a much better deal than the iPad 3.

Some may still stay with the iPad 3 and the huge reputation and immense popularity that go along with it.  Apple has made a lot of excellent products in the past, and the iPad is a great device in its own right. If you want a smaller tablet, the iPad Mini is there to indulge you, but having the alternative courtesy of the Onda v812 is a good thing for the total market of consumers out there.

NEWSFLASH: Samsung S4 launched on March 14, 2013

Hold on to your seats, Samsung fanatics! The latest android phone has just been officially released at the Unpacked Event in London on last March 14, 2013! Moving on from is S3 predecessor, Samsung is proud to unveil its latest smart phone that is set to compete with the release of Apple’s iPhone5. Surely, the S4 will prove itself worthy of the money people will buy it for. With this in mind, the only big question that remains is: what are the best things about the Samsung Galaxy S4?

Samsung S4

According to Roberta Cozza, Granter analyst, this android phone is set to run under the Google android operating system, staying true to its promise for a more profound customization. Rumors say that the Samsung S4 will feature a 5-inch 1080p screen, which is slightly larger than the Samsung S3’s. Powered by 1.9 GHz ARM’s A15 quad-core processor, this galaxy phone makes it possible to boost up your device even under intensified application activities. Transition from one app to another is also said to be smoother with its android-jellybean version 4.2 touchwiz.

Watching movies, browsing the web, playing your favorite games, and viewing your most beloved television shows will never be immediately interrupted with a “low-battery sign” because it is buzzed to be powered by Li-Ion 3100 mAh battery. Data terminals used to communicate have also been made faster with its 4G LTE feature. On top of all these awesome features is a 13-megapixel camera that is sure to be loved by the consumers.

As expected, the S4 will definitely have more advanced specifications as compared to other galaxy phones. Probably the most highlighted rumored feature of this new device is that it can be operated through an eye-tracked technology, meaning that you can access its functions with just your – your eyeballs! Is this new feature cool, or is this new feature COOL?!

If you are looking for a new phone, what’s really stopping you from getting the almighty S4? Too lazy to leave your home? Your argument is invalid. Group buying sites are more popular than ever.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Government-Regulated Group Buying Sites

With the abundance of group buying sites nowadays, it is no longer surprising that authorities have started to keep a steady eye on them. In the past couple years, certain group buying sites were reported for offering fraudulent deals. Although there are individuals who feel better now thinking that group buying sites have become safer, it is inevitable for the others to raise an eyebrow regarding the issue.

To be fair, both sides make reasonable arguments, which explain why certain people choose to react in a particular way towards such a matter. In this post, let us try to identify the advantages and disadvantages of government-regulated group buying sites. Before we begin analyzing, we must answer the question:

What do we mean by government-regulated group buying sites in the first place?

If a group buying site is regulated by the government, then it means that no one can purchase anything from that site unless he or she has a certain permit from certain government offices. Meaning to say, these particular sites have been officially recognized by the government, so all issues regarding it can be forwarded or traced back to the designated authorities. Also, the deals that they offer on these sites are also verified by these offices to make sure that zero products are neither fake nor substandard. This process rids any harmful products that could easily find their way in non-regulated sites.

Group Buying Sites Regulated by the Government

So what is good about these government-regulated sites?

Since these sites are carefully regulated by the government, buyers can be assured that the vendors and manufacturers they are transacting with are real. And if ever something goes wrong, it would be easier for them to get in touch with these sellers because they have ample records and documentations. Shoppers are assured that they are dealing with trustworthy individuals and legitimate companies, establishing such sites as the safer option.

Quality control is also another advantage of these sites. Since the government is involved in the operation of the sites, there is assurance that these products and services passed the qualifications and standards set by the government offices. They are also sure to have undergone ample screening processes to make sure that the products are exactly as how they are advertised.

Now what are the drawbacks of these government-regulated sites then?

First, let us take into account the main reasons why people have easily fallen in love with group buying sites:

  • Cheaper goods – Through group buying, a crowd composed of individuals who are eyeing on the same Smartphone, or laptop, or tablet, can actually purchase it a much lower price. This is due to the fact that a crowd has a stronger bargaining power compared to an individual.
  • Great deals – Group buying sites offer the greatest deals in town. This we all know. Besides the fact that they attract numerous buyers, they also attract a number of suppliers, manufacturers, and service providers that aim to offer their amazing products and services to interested parties.
  • New products – Apparently, there is a multitude of interesting new products in group buying sites. In fact, quite a number of small companies and starting businesses use group buying sites to promote their offerings to the public. This is their way of letting people know about what they, finding prospective clients in the process.

So how does the involvement of the government affect these?

If a site is regulated by the government, then it means that the government has a lot of say on the sites’ affiliate companies and deals. And since these government offices want to be stricter in their screening and monitoring processes, there is a big tendency that the deals, particularly the very cheap ones, will be somehow limited. For instance, officers might give more favor to more established companies with good records over the new or starting ones. They may also be stricter when it comes to new products and companies. Ultimately, the government’s involvement may lead to lesser deals and higher prices.

How Group Buying Sites Killed Multiply Stores

There is no doubt that social media and social networking have made a considerable impact in the lives of individual people and in the existence of billion-dollar companies. Basic social interactions, planning of family gatherings, and setting of meetings can be done anywhere with a WiFi connection, provided that you didn’t forget to bring your precious laptop, of course. It is this drastic technological innovation that gave birth to electronic commerce (a.k.a. e-commerce), an industry that utilizes the power of the Internet to promote the buying and/or selling of certain products and/or services.

Multiply Store

Multiply was launched as a social networking site last March 2004 where people can upload and share pictures, music, videos, and blogs to their friends. Before Facebook and Twitter dominated the social media realm, Multiply was able to build a vast, active network. With the innovations and creative mind of its followers, e-commerce became a significant part of Multiply. Different Multiply stores offered a wide variety of products that caught the attention of thousands of consumers.

Although e-commerce has been around since 2000, it was only in the year 2008 when online shopping businesses, particularly group buying sites, have made its way as another contender in the online market. Until now, group buying sites play a major role with today’s driving patrons, offering great discounts to popular gadgets and innovations. This type of e-commerce, in a word, killed, the multiply stores. Here are the reasons:

            Factors             Multiply Stores        Group Buying Sites
Offerings Products only Products, Services, Trips, etc.Most have a “product of the day” feature that entices its followers to buy.
Coverage Based on what the owners have in hand. Covers multiple stores, brands, etc.
Discounts Limited discounts. Discounts are everywhere.
Value for money/Quality Most products are unbranded, which gives buyers little idea about the products. Most products are branded which lets buyers know the quality of what they are buying.

The abovementioned comparison gives no reason to ponder how group buying sites kicked Multiply stores off the map of online shopping. Multiply itself seems to recognize this truth in the way it has tripled its effort to revive its stores. Not too long ago, Mutiply’s CEO, Stefan Magdalinski, announced that they will no longer provide the social media features they were initially known for. With this, they’ll be focusing more on e-commerce with its Multiply-Market Place, which is designed to serve their patrons in Southeast Asia.