Vodafone launches AppStar contest




Vodafone has launched first ever telecom sponsored App contest in India. The overall idea behind the AppStar contest is to promote the Mobile Internet usage in India by targeting the developer ecosystem.

The global contest has invited the developers across the country to give their unique apps to Vodafone India. The chosen ones will get to compete with worlds best at the International round to be held in Kenya.

The contest is expected to bring in some really useful and unique apps for the users all over the world. For more info about the contest and details you can read the below press release.


Mumbai, October 14, 2013: Vodafone India, one of India’s leading telecommunications service providers, has launched the unique Vodafone AppStar - an annual developer contest to encourage local adoption of mobile internet by focusing on the developer ecosystem. This is a global initiative by Vodafone that provides a platform for all mobile app developers to showcase their talent to a larger global audience. This is an industry first move by Vodafone to engage with the developer community and ensure that world class apps are available to its customers.

The Vodafone AppStar contest invites developers across the country to submit their unique apps to Vodafone India and be chosen as the best in their category. The contest gives the developers an opportunity to compete with the best in the world and empowers them to showcase their Apps on a global scale under the Vodafone umbrella.

The Vodafone AppStar contest will not only benefit the developer community but will also bring to the customers many unique local apps that generally get lost in the open market app stores. These apps will help the customer discover the many uses of mobile internet apart from plain-vanilla internet browsing.

The Vodafone AppStar contest will be held at two levels - India and international. For India specific contest, there are three categories in which one can participate – Best Game, Best Utility, Best Local Language App. The contest seeks to encourage apps which work in local conditions (like feature phones, local languages, etc). The winners of India round will stand a chance to participate in the international round that will be held in Kenya.

The contest is open for anyone who has the capability to develop a cool app in any of the listed platforms – Blackberry,Android, J2ME, Windows Phone, iOSVodafone AppStar provides an open platform to all developers: be it an established company, student, hobbyists or a freelancer.

Vodafone has thrown this contest open for all. So, even those who are not application developers can be a part of this contest by sharing their dream app idea. To participate in the contest, one will have to submit this idea on the contest website. The winner for this category will be decided based on the number of votes that the particular idea will generate.

To participate in the contest, for both submitting an app or the dream app idea, and to get more details, please log on to www.vodafoneappstar.com
So, go ahead and participate and be a star at the Vodafone AppStar contest!





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TrendNet releases a TU-S9, a USB to Serial Port converter




The hardware and networking brand TrendNet has launched TU-S9,  a USB to Serial converter which allows users to connect RS-232 serial device with Desktops/Laptops.

The lightweight cable with a length of 60 cm allows for hassle free connections without hampering the data transfer speeds. 

TU S9 USB Serial to Serial Port Converter has following features-                                                  
  • Supports data rate up to 6 Mbps.
  • Powered by USB port by which no external power adapter required.
  • Comes with USB 1.1 Specifications.
  • RS-232 serial interface.
  • Install as a standard Windows COM port, full RS-232 modem control signals.
  • Supports automatic handshake mode.
  • Easy Plug and Play installation.
  • Supports multiple operating systems.



TU-S9 is priced at Rs. 1,490/-. The product carries a warranty of 2 years and is available with TRENDnet national distributor Abacus Peripherals Pvt. Ltd.





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CrunchBang : A Simple Linux Distro with No Fuzz




Ah! Atlast i am writing something after days of break from blogging and i have to say it that i missed it in many ways. 

Getting back to the topic, being a Linux fan i have tried a whole lot of distros or flavours as many call them but after shuffling through many of them i have fell for this Crunchbang thing. So i decided to write a full long review about it which may help you decide on what you want on your machine.

Crunchbang linux distro review


A Simple Machine!

Why i call it simple because it doesn't have any sort of fuzz associated with it. The very first time you boot into CrunchBang, you will get to know what you are going to be served. You are welcomed by a blank screen with no such launcher as Unity which is found in Ubuntu, only what you get is a task bar at the top and some basic system info which feels like its engraved on the wallpaper but its not (we will come back to it later).  

Lets dive into some more details.

Fast and Powerful

As i mentioned i have used many of the available Linux distros including Ubuntu, so it has been a bit easier for me to notice the speed and powerful nature of the OS. Crunchbang tends to beat many other Linux OS's in terms of booting up which also includes Ubuntu, Mint, Elementary among others that i have previously tried. Though the difference may not be much but slightest margins get counted in a race. 

Clean Interface (Conky, tint2)

Crunchbang provides you with only the basic interface that a typical Linux user would like to have. Its just perfect i would say for a guy like me who is more dependent on the commands and shortcuts rather than reaching out for the mouse every now and then. 

The very basic interface includes two very customizable and fun elements that are conky and tint2. The panel that you get on right side of the screen is conky which provides you with the system info and also shows many of the very useful shortcuts that help you get started within minutes. Conky is highly customizable with scripts and is quite a help for a new guy. 

With Crunchbang i have minimized the use of mouse and believe me you will not know when you get used to not using the mouse often. The shortcuts are so easy, it just took me a day to get used to the shortcuts and since then it has been a smooth ride. 

Coming to another part of the interface which is provided by Crunchbang is tint2 panel at the top, like conky it also very customizable. You just need to edit its configuration file with options you like and there are already alot of them on the web. 


Package Manager

Crunchbang is based on Debian which means you get your favorite packages with just a single command i.e., sudo apt-get install. Being a developer i need a whole lot of different packages for my apps environment to run and crunchbang has been able to fulfill those package requirements without much effort. Though if you need to get Skype up and running on a 64 bit machine then you might need to take out some time for the setup but that's the case with other Linux distro's as well.

A Linux Distro for My Machine!

For now i will keep using CrunchBang as my primary OS till i don't get hit by something else which is  more productive and simple at the same time. I haven't compared it much with others nor i have done any benchmarks but my overall experience with Crunchbang makes it the perfect OS for me. If you are a geek who likes to have more keystrokes when compared to mouse clicks, then i would suggest you to give it a try. At the same time i want to mention if you are just getting started with Linux then i would say Ubuntu or Mint will be a better choice for you. 







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New Nokia Lumia Teaser appears on British TV ahead of Launch on May 14




Nokia is all set to launch their next generation Lumia device in London on May 14th. 

nokia lumia pureview


Nokia has released a teaser on the British television that says "Better than your eyes can See". No doubt the company knows well how to get people to stick their eyes on the event.

All the clues given by Nokia and news floating around converge towards a possible Lumia Phone with high-end camera capabilities. Nokia has scheduled the launch event just one day before the big Google I/O event to be held in San Francisco on May 15th. 

The teaser video was captured by Verge and can be seen below:

The invite sent out to various media houses reads " THE NEW NOKIA LUMIA STORY CONTINUES". 

The company has been on series of launches, firstly they launched Nokia Asha 505 in India which was followed by the unveiling of Nokia Lumia 928 and now we have another Lumia to look out for. 

Not much details about the phone but it will surely be a next version of Nokia's PureView technology. Lets wait for the May 14 and see what Finnish company has in store for us. 

Source: The Verge






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Nokia Lumia 928 announced with 4.5 OLED 8MP camera, coming to Verizon




As posted by us earlier about the leaked Nokia Lumia 928, the company has now officially announced the next flagship device Nokia Lumia 928. 

Nokia lumia 928

Nokia Lumia 928 like other  new Lumia phones runs the Windows Phone 8 and it does look great. Nokia has improved upon its design and the color shades just look brilliant. 

Nokia with all its stars present announced the Nokia Asha 501 yesterday, the phone was targeted towards an entry level market. With all this going on, its clearly evident that Nokia is here to compete and push its competitors over the cliff to claim the place it once ruled.

Nokia Lumia 928 sports a shiny new design that is sure to attract you towards it, the smartphone features a 4.5 inch PureView AMOLED display and a 8.7 megapixel camera with Carl Zeiss optics. The camera is capable of shooting full HD videos and the Nokia camera quality you all would know.

Coming to the processor of this phone, it is embedded with a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor which is highly capable of carrying the processing burden along with 1GB of RAM. The phone comes with 32GB of storage along with 7GB of SkyDrive cloud storage from Microsoft which is proves very handy in various situations. 

Also Nokia Lumia 928 has 4G LTE capabilities and is NFC enabled. Looking at all the specs and design of this Nokia flagship, we will call it a beast!

Drop in your views!





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Final Render of Nokia Lumia 928 Leaked




Nokia has launched a series of Lumia smartphones in a short span and here comes another one (almost confirmed), The Lumia 928.  

Nokia Lumia 928 final render pic has been leaked by @evleaks on Twitter. According the leaked render it seems that the smartphone will be released on Verizon in United States. 

On the specs side, the Lumia 928 is expected to have a Xenon flash, which makes it the first Lumia device to have a Xenon flash. It will also have a LED flash alongside with a screen size  of 4.5 inch. The smartphone may not be releasing worldwide as of now but a possible worldwide release under a different branding cannot be ruled out. 

Lets hope it does make its way to Asia and the Indian Sub-continent. Let us know what you think about this!

Source : @evleaks





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Review: Energizer Portable Charger




We have been using this product for quite sometime now and will do a detailed review in this post. No matter how we use our gadgets we have surely ran out of battery on numerous occasions and that is where the need for a portable charger is felt.


Energizer Portable Charger has been doing well for us in the time period we used it, thou it has some cons as well like any other gadget. We have decided to divide this review in three sections, namely:

  • Contents in the Box,
  • Performance and Pros,
  • Cons

Contents in the Box:

Energizer Portable Charger comes in a nice package which feels a bit bulky at first with all its content. It comes with following parts:


  • 4000 mAh portable battery 
  • Two USB cables
  • Number of pluggable tips (each for Apple, BlackBerry, Nokia, Motorola, etc)
  • A Black Pouch (to carry the Energizer)
  • 1 adapter for charging the Energizer
  • Manual

Performance: 

Energizer is a powerful portable charger with 4000 mAh battery inside it which is capable of fully charging your normal batteries twice. We tested the performance of Energizer on various handsets and the results are shown in the table below:

Nokia Lumia 710 2 full charges
BlackBerry Curve 9300 2 and a half charge
Samsung Galaxy Note II 1 complete charge
Nokia Asha 300 3 complete charges

The table above should give you a nice idea of how the charger will perform for your device, not to forget it can also charge your iPods and MP3 players at the same time.


Energizer contains two output USB ports, one for charging your phones and the other for charging your music players. You also get a pair of USB cables so that you can use both the ports at the same time to charge two devices simultaneously.

If we count the pros, than first thing that comes to mind is the number of devices that are supported by it. In the box, you get 5 different tips that can be used to charge five different brand devices. Also the company offers you lifetime additional free tips that you may need subject to your locations and other conditions.  The portable battery is not so sleek but fits in your pocket perfectly.


If we look it usage wise, the Energizer performed reasonably well providing decent number of charge cycles to various devices we used it on.

Cons:

Every device has some cons associated with it, the same is the case with Energizer portable charger. Though it performs well in its primary function that is charging but feels a bit bulky with all those additional cables and tips that we need to carry. 

Also we had a tough time carrying it around when a device was connected to it for charging. Specifically, the tip for BlackBerry used to slip out of the phone on numerous occasions making it hard for us to move around while charging the device. 

Verdict:

Though the Energizer does its primary job of charging your devices quite well but the overall purpose of portable charger i.e., being mobile while charging is not satisfactory. Still you can consider buying it if you are on of those who tend to carry alot of gizmos around and don't like to carry separate chargers for each of them.

Thanks to the guys at MobileFun for the product.





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