Archive for the ‘smartphones’ tag
Smartphones have recently appeared to be useful not only for calling, writing messages and surfing the Internet. It is also not enough to pay with smartphones – soon, they will replace bank cards making it possible to withdraw money from cash machines. It is possible because PC/E Mobile Cash – app launched for Android and iOS – has been improved by Wincor Nixdorf who is also the first to integrate this service in Apple Passbook using Apple passes.
It is quite a simple process. Through the app bank customer receives QR code for the transaction. Then, the QR code is read in at cash machine. The app can also show the way to the nearest cash machine that supports Mobile Cash. Next, the customer selects the Mobile Cash function and from now on the transaction is controlled from customer’s smartphone. Additionally, a transaction PIN can be entered.
To enable customers to withdraw cash with smartphones, banks probably will have to carry out some small, but significant, enhancements. For example, they will have to add a barcode scanner to cash dispensers to read the QR code, or install client software on them to support the function.
As Stefan Wahle, Vice President of Software Solutions at Wincor Nixdorf, said: ‘Consumers are increasingly demanding innovative end user concepts – not just in payment processes with mobile wallets but also they will play a key role in interaction with cash machines in the future’. Then, the new concept of using smartphones is not surprising to be available worldwide with immediate effect for piloting by financial institutions.
Quick look on the insurance offers on the British market show that there are plenty of insurers who provide cover from between £3.99 and £6.99 a month. The cheapest basic covers include accidental damage (up to £500) , overseas cover and cover for immediate family. However, if you have a top smartphone like the newest iPhone 4S it might be more profitable to pick a full cover (for around £6.99 a month or £55-59 a year). Such policy protects you from accidental damage, loss and theft, but also covers unauthorized calls and mobile wallet protection.
An Indian digital company ENMAC has recently released their line of smartphones that targets the Islamic community, especially in India – Smartphone for Muslims. Their phones have all the functionality of modern smartphones such as double SIM card slot, touchscreen, GPRS connectivity and video camera. Additionally they have all sort of applications useful for any Muslim. For example, there is a compass that always points to Mecca, a complete Holy Qur’an, the holy Islamic book, in 29 languages including English, Urdu or Bengali, or tutorial on how to perform the Hajj rituals. On top of this, there is an auto-silent mode that turns on during pray times and when you are in mosque.
Smartphone for Muslims
Anuj Kanish, ENMAC, says that there is a need for such devices as there is around 180 million Muslims in the Indian society, for which religion has a very important place, just as the mobile phone. The company wants to cater for both of these important needs providing a product that is a combination of technology and religion.
It turns out that there is a huge group of Brits who really regret picking the newest iPhone 4S as their new smartphone. According to a poll conducted by Good Mobile Phones a fifth of iPhone owners are not happy that they made the purchase. The survey that was answered by around 1,700 Brits with iPhones asked about their opinion on their choice of phone.
Among the 22 percent of the completely unsatisfied customers who regret buying an iPhone 43 percent said that the competition has better smartphones than iPhone 4S, while 25 percent is dissatisfied with the battery life. Apart from those two issues, the iPhone 4S owners also pointed to lack of “buttons”, difficulty using emails and poor functionality. It seems that people who regret choosing iPhone where lured by Apple’s marketing department, that makes the Apple gadgets so trendy and desired. Instead, they should have done their homework and research the latest phones to pick the right one for them.
Motorola has unveiled its new redesigned version of the iconic Motorola RAZR mobile phone. The updated version will be one of the thinnest smartphones available on the market – only 7.1mm thick. In comparison with the former RAZR the new one will not be a clamshell mobile phone. But it will be a powerful smartphone with 4.3” Super AMOLED touchscreen and dual-core 1.2 GHz processor. Additionally, RAZR will have two HD cameras with 1080p HD video recording capabilities. The phone will be working on Android software (Gingerbread), but the newest version of Android– Ice Candy will be installed starting from 2012 . The phone producer also equipped it with a large 1800 mAh battery that supposedly gives 12.5 hours of talk time or 8.9 hours of video playback.
The Motorola company hopes that their new phone will be a bestseller just like the original version of RAZR, which is the best-selling clamshell phone ever. Motorola RAZR will be available in the UK next month and currently only O2 confirmed that it will have the new RAZR for its customers.
The Chinese mobile phone company, Huawei, decided to launch their own brand of smartphones. Currently the brand does not have a well-established name, as they mainly produce handsets for mobile networks, which then sells them under their own brand, for example – Orange Barcelona . Now Huawei declared that they want to create their own brand which will have affordable smartphones for people who want to have a smartphone but not splurge much money on it. Their newest smartphone, the Blaze, will be launched in September in UK and China. Blaze will have a 3.2 inch touch-screen, 3.2 camera, 256MB of RAM and will run on Android 2.3 “Gingerbread”. The phone will probably cost around 100 quids.
This trend is also visible on the mobile phone market, as 2010 was the year where many customers migrate from PAYG sim cards to contracts to get a brand new smartphone at a lowered price.
Majority of smartphone users try to protect the data on their phones by using a passcode. It is usually a four digit code which has to be entered to use the phone after it is powered on or “waken”. But is using a passcode a really safe way to protect your phone?
passcodes used on iPhone
An iPhone application called Big Brother Camera Security anonymously collected over 200,000 passcodes from iPhone users and analyzed them. The results showed that top 10 passcodes used on iPhone represents 15 percent of the collected data. Most of them are typical formulas like the same four digits or moving up or down the pad and the top one used is 1234. The study also points to the fact that years of birth or graduation, as numbers between 1980 and 2000 were all in top 100 codes used. What this implies is that we should choose more complicated and less formulaic passcodes otherwise the phone’s security is compromised. From statistical point of view, a thief has 1 in 7 chance of unlocking an iPhone if he uses top 10 passcodes. The chances are even higher when he or she knows your birthday and other personal data. Most probably this trend doesn’t refer solely to iPhones as users of other smartphones probably also use simple, formulaic passcodes.
GfK, a global analyst company, reported that PAYG smartphones became more popular on the prepay market in the United Kingdom. Last year in December, smartphones accounted for 20% of the prepay phone market. This is a great increase as 2009 only 2% of the market was taken by PAYG smartphones. However, overall the prepay phone market shrinked by 7.4% in 2010. Megan Baldock from GfK is optimistic as she says that the smartphone prepay market could continue to rise in 2011.