Cellphone unlocking legal again!

Excellent news! Just a few days ago the United States Senate passed Bill S. 517  ( also known as the Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act) to legalize cell phone unlocking so that consumers can switch carriers easily once their contract is up with their current carrier!




This means that once you’re finished on your contract you are legally allowed to unlock your phone, hence being able to move between carriers as you please. Originally, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act made it illegal to do so, followed by a exemption period from ending in January 2012, again making it illegal to unlock your phone. A petition was then recorded on the White House website opposing this which gathered over 110,000 signatures.


Hooray for common sense and the people’s voice, right?!


Kindle unlimited – books foreVER!

Kindle has today officially announced the release of their new Kindle Unlimited product, which should make the bibliophiles amongst us prettttty happy! Kindle Unlimited is a subscription service that offers unlimited access to all of Kindle’s library of titles and thousands of Audible audiobooks.


If you subscribe, you can access all of this on a Kindle, or on a Kindle app on the iPad, Mac or iPhone for a monthly fee of $9.99. . The nice guys over at Kindle are offering a 30 day free trial which also comes with a free three month Audible service.


Reading is pretty much one of the only things you don’t have to do in moderation, if you think about it, unless you’re paying a lot of money to do it. And now you don’t have to! Yay reading!






Google partnerships with Novartis for groundbreaking product

Google have announced that they have partnered with Novartis, the worlds biggest multinational pharmaceutical company, to work towards the development of a product that could have massive health repercussions if successful.


The product they have in mind is a ‘smart’ contact lens with capabilities to not only  help those who suffer with being shortsighted with an auto-focus type feature, but also to measure and transmit blood sugar levels of people who suffer from Diabetes. This would be a huge step forward in the care and health of diabetics not only with the elimination of manual glucose measuring  but with the ability for both themselves and their doctors to have real time blood sugar levels collated in a smart phone or similar device.


Google are already on their way with the creation of the groundbreaking product. As of January  their prototypes  being able to make one Glucose reading per second.


Those involved are saying that the development of the ‘smart’ lens will take at least 2 or 3 years to bring to market, but they are hopeful that with the collaboration of Novartis and those behind the miniaturization of electronics in the X blue-sky innovation arm of Google will be able to succeed as soon as possible.


This is one of many inroads into health technology being made by the big tech companies, and is a hugely positive marker that as an industry, they’re heading in the right direction!


New iOS 8 Features discovered

There’s by now been some time since the features of iOS 8 were announced at WWDC 2014. Developers have had access to the new operating system since then and some more details have arisen from that. Hooray for developers!


Here’s some of what they’ve discovered:


* You can send your iPhone or iPad’s last location to Apple before it’s battery dies.


* The magical miracle of Shazam will not be integrated into Siri, and you will have the option to buy or find out more about the song playing once it’s identified. Um, Awesome.


* Using Safari, you will be able to use the device’s camera to scan in credit card numbers when you make online purchases, rather than typing the number in. Because those numbers are soooo long, you guys.


* You know how sometimes you hand your phone or iPad to a friend so they can see a photo? And then they just start rolling on through all the rest of your photos? And sometimes we have photos that should not be seen by others, are we right? Well, in iOS 8 you will have the option to hide certain photos from the Moments, Collections and Years view within the app. The photos will still be visible in the albums view, but in a sneaky new ‘Hidden’ album.


* The Photos app will have two new albums; “Recently Added” and “Recently Deleted.” The Recently Deleted album will temporarily show photos that have been recently deleted. (d’uh).


* The Camera app will have a sweet new Time Lapse feature, manual exposure controls and a self timer mode for 3 or 10 seconds.


* The new Weather app will take it’s information from The Weather Channel in iOS 8 and will feature a bucket load more details about the weather- UV Index, sunset/sunrise times, humidity, pressure and that all important ‘feels like’ option.


* Photos will be able to be inserted into notes in iOS 8, so that instead of trying to describe that amazing thing you saw that one night that meant that you were actually supposed to be an astronaut, you can take a photo. Cos that’s a thousand words right there.


*There will be new options for calendars in iOS 8, including Islamic, Chinese and Hebrew. Meanwhile, keyboards will be available in Filipino, Marathi, Slovenian, and Urdu. Sladko!


* There will be location based apps displayed on your screen depending on where you are – the example given is the Apple App store App will display automatically if you’re in an Apple store. So many Apples.


* Peer-to-peer Airplay will give users the option to stream content via Apple TV without having to share a network connection.


So there you have it, some more details surfacing about iOS 8! Pretty neat ones too. Although we really can’t wait until the developers tell everyone about the iOS 8 line of sight transportation feature. Now that’s a rad feature.





Google Acquires Skybox Imaging

One of Google’s more recent acquisitions is Skybox Imaging, an intelligence company that has been making vast inroads in satellite technology which Google will harness to use in mapping. The technology could however also have other far reaching  implications on privacy and business to business competition and spying.


From the Sauce:


‘By the time its entire fleet of 24 satellites has launched in 2018, Skybox will be imaging the entire Earth at a resolution sufficient to capture, for example, real-time video of cars driving down the highway. And it will be doing it three times a day.’


Cool cool, right? But they also rather casually mention:



‘ They are already looking at Foxconn every week and are able to pinpoint the next iPhone release based on the density of trucks outside their manufacturing facilities.’



Oooooh…. Interesting? Useful? A waste of technology? Kinda creepy? NOBODY KNOWS! We appreciate the map stuff though, because just how the hell did people know how to get places before?





Apple’s annual ‘back to school’ promotion begins tomorrow!

Apple will begin it’s annual ‘Back To School’ Promotion tomorrow,  Tuesday, July 1st, with a likely offer of an iTunes Store/App Store gift card to students that purchase a Mac, iPad, or iPhone.


If similar to last’s year’s promotion, the offer will be a $100 App Store gift card for the purchase of a new Mac or a $50 App Store gift card with the purchase of an iPad or iPhone.


So if you’ve been waiting for a good time to make that Apple purchase, now might just be the right time! Tomorrow in fact! The same exact right time that the US is going to beat Belgium in the World cup!


What a good day, tomorrow. We like you.




OS X Yosemite designed with Retina screens in mind?

Macworld’s Jason Snell, after spending some time hands on with OS X Yosemite, has declared that he thinks that the operating system was designed with Retina Screens in mind – exciting – considering that we’re still sitting here patiently waiting for the MacBook Air’s to be graced with the power of Retina.


From the Sauce:


“For a while now, I’ve thought that 2014 would be the year that Retina spreads across the Mac product line. After spending time with Yosemite on both Retina and non-Retina systems, I’m more confident than ever in that guess. Yosemite’s new design feels like it was built for Retina displays: Thin Helvetica Neue replaces the long-serving but chunky Lucida Grande as the system typeface.”


The general consensus is that a Retina macbook air will be released later this year to coincide with the public release of Yosemite. Yay!





iPhone Tip Of The Day! Siri Edition.

Here’s your hot tip for this fine Friday afternoon! In iOS 7 you don’t have to do all that work (pressing the home button ) to get Siri’s attention – if the phone is awake, you can simply lift the phone to your ear and start talking. After you’ve gotten her attention, you can put the phone anywhere in front of you to talk to her.


Simply go to Settings> General> Siri> Switch the button for ‘Raise to Speak’ to on.


Easy! Now go ask Siri what awesome things you should do this weekend! Oh, what, you already have awesome things planned? Well aren’t you just too cool for school. You still need Siri man, how you gonna get to that awesome place where they have those awesome free cocktails without her? Huh? How you gonna have cool facts to impress the ladies without her? HUH?











iPhone Tip Of The Day

This one’s for the walkers out there, you good honest souls you! When using maps in iOS 7, you have the option to choose walking directions as a dafault in settings, and to have Siri read you the directions turn- by- turn. Snazzy.


To set walking directions as your default, go to Settings>Maps. Scroll down to the Preferred Directions section and choose between walking and driving.


To ask Siri to give you prompted map directions whilst walking, tap the Directions button in the top left hand corner, select the walking icon at the top of the screen, enter your destination and then tap Route.


Interesting, (and some might say challenging), fact for you - Given that the world is about 25,000 miles in circumference and that the average walking rate is 3 miles per hour, it would take a person walking nonstop approximately 347 days to walk around the world.


Go to it!





New Emoji yay

In case you guys weren’t paying attention to your Facebook feed last week,  the world has been blessed by around 250 new Emoji ( yes, the plural of Emoji is Emoji. Like moose, although we, as awesome people, prefer Meese.)


Apparently the people in charge of Emoji are The Unicode Consortium, which sounds way fancier than what we had imagined – ‘ the wacky consortium of fun little doodle things.’  Anyway, they’ve announced version 7.0 of the Unicode Standard, which will in turn see the introduction of all those sweet new Emoji which will be seen in future versions of the Android and iOS operating systems.


According to the Unicode Consortium, the new emoji characters are primarily derived from characters used in the Wingdings and Webdings fonts. A full list of the new emoji names can be found on Emojipedia, which includes descriptions for each future emoji. A few examples:



- “Clamshell Mobile Phone”
- “man in business suit levitating”
- “Black Skull & Crossbones”
- “chipmunk”
- “Sleuth or Spy”
- “reversed hand with middle finger extended”



We’re especially looking forward to using the man in business suit levitating next to a chipmunk. For… reasons.