Web Warp Blog has been retired. For new posts please head to dmather.com.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Set Yourself Free with MiFi

So your on the internet. Where are you? Home, work, basically anywhere you can get a Wi-Fi connection, right? What if you didn't have to always pop to that cafe because they have free Wi-Fi, or limit the use of your Wi-Fi only iPad to your lounge?

You can now take a Wi-Fi connection with you,where ever you go*. And I'm not talking about home broadband packages which include access to hotspots around the country, such as BT and Sky (Sky's new tie up with The Cloud was covered on the blog: http://webwarpblog.blogspot.co.uk/2012/04/sky-wifi.html). This blogpost is about the brilliance of MiFi Mobile Broadband. MiFi is a 3G internet connected Wi-Fi router which fits in the palm of your hand. You can connect multiple devices to it so they can all share the single 3G data connection.

A couple of 3 MiFi devices

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Google+ iOS App Update

The Google+ iOS App has been updated to include a new high resolution user interface. The new retina display ready interface looks great and is a world away from the previous Facebook style application. The Google+ app features a smooth autoloading of the next item in your circles news feeds. The full bleed images and fine fonts look incredible. For more information about the update see the Google blogpost or see the Google video below!

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

iOS 5.1.1

Apple have released an update for iOS devices (iPhones, iPad's & iPod Touches). This new update, 5.1.1, is ready to be downloaded and installed right on the device by browsing to Settings > General > Software Update. The update fixes various bugs including an issue with warnings about successful purchases from the App Store, which actually succeeded once a suitable Wi-Fi network has been connected too.

The update is reasonably sized at just over 50MB and takes advantage of iOS 5's feature to update software in smaller packages downloaded directly to the device, negating the previous requirement to download over 700MB's to iTunes and then connect the iOS device to the computer to install the update.

Information from the Apple page:

Saturday, 5 May 2012

The Mobile Internet

A blogpost about the mobile Internet, no news, just a general discussion. Feel free to add comments below.

In the UK there are 5 main network providers: Orange, T-Mobile, Vodafone, O2 & 3. Other networks such as Virgin Mobile, Tesco Mobile and Giff Gaff "piggy back" on these networks systems. And Orange and T-Mobile are now actually "Everything Everywhere", though the customer will still see the two independent brands.

These networks provide traditional connectivity for phone calls, SMS text messaging and GPRS. They also provide 3G internet connectivity (subject to network coverage). With the advent of 3G technology, and the ever increasing market share occupied by smartphones, the mobile Internet has truly arrived. With a strong 3G connection you don't need to be tied to your desk to pick up emails, or hop from wifi hotspot to hotspot (although there are huge number around these days) to watch the latest funny clip on YouTube.

Train journeys, dentist waiting rooms, even sat on the loo you can stay connected with your friends news feed on Facebook. You could even be reading Web Warp Blog out and about on your smartphone or tablet over 3G.

You can get a huge variety of service though from 3G network providers. Some networks seem to provide much faster speeds than others in different areas of the country. A strong signal is required for good download speed, and your hardware needs to be quick too.

Friday, 4 May 2012

Google+ Hangout's

Video calling has been around for a long time. Microsoft's MSN Messenger supported video calling from a long time ago, although during Messenger's hay day a lot of people still ran off dial-up internet connections. Skype has been around for many years, and even had the backing of internet auction giant eBay for a time. It has a large user base of people video calling across towns and even continents. The trouble for Skype is that people only seem to use their free video calling service, and aren't so keen to VoIP a call from their computer to a real phone, at real cost. Other video messaging services have their own users too, however most of these platforms focus on either one to one conversations, or small groups of around four participants.

Google+ is different and allows a load of people to join a 'hangout' (video call). They can then share there own webcam stream to everyone, share their screen, work on Google Doc's together. Even group watch a YouTube video. All the while sharing text with one another. A Google+ hangout is almost like being sat around the same table/computer monitor as your fellow participants.

There are video's demonstrated Google+ Hangout's in the Read More section.

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Samsung Galaxy SIII

Samsung have announced their new flagship smartphone - the Samsung Galaxy SIII. The official smartphone of the London 2012 olympics will run Google's Android 4.0 operating system. Hardware wise it will feature an 8 megapixel camera, increased battery capacity on the SII and NFC. Coming soon will be a version with 4G LTE. This isn't too much of a problem in the UK, as there are no 4G networks yet... (come on OFCOM!).

The phone will include a Siri style voice assistant called S Voice, and an enhanced version of Android 4's beam function called S Beam. The Android OS itself brings features such as face recognition unlock to the device. The screen looks incredible in the announcement, a 4.8" AMOLED screen. The phone's bevel is smaller than that of the previous model the SII so as not to increase the overall dimensions too much.

The phone's capable of auto tagging photos of your friends and family once it has learned each of their faces. These can be uploaded directly to social media platforms, namely Facebook.

Let us know what you think, are you impressed with the Galaxy SIII, send us your comments below.

The Google Experience

The Google experience used to be a fast, reliable search of the whole internet on google.com.

Then they added loads of services. Now they are all integrated with Google+, to bring your contacts with you, and Google Drive to store, share and collaborate on your content.

Wether is family holidays, business idea's or university projects, there's one easy way to collaborate. And the reason it's so universal? It's in the web browser. All of it. You don't need expensive software, or worry about file types / versions / compatibility. It's just in the browser, all from that same old google.com.

And for a speedy browser experience, the way to go in Google Chrome.

450 New Fonts for Google Docs

Google Doc's is fast becoming the best online word processing service with its continual evolution and improvements. The latest offerings to the Google Doc's user is 60 new templates for documents and a raft of 450 new fonts.

The online web browser began with only small number of standard fonts, which did little to rival the customisation and fonts on desktop applications such as Microsoft Word, Open Office and Apple's Pages. But with latest changes, including Google Drive integration, Google Doc's is in prime position to be a valuable rival to the office staple: the word processor.

Other advantages include the ease of collaboration. Not only can you share access to other Google users, but they can edit the document live, in real time while you are still in the document. No waiting to email each other different versions. The collaboration works great in a team situation too, there is even a text chat box right within the document editing user interface.

All this comes from a website, through your web browser. No cost, no software download, just online collaboration through the browser. It's compatible with almost any computer with an Internet connection too.

Does Microsoft Office Live, the Microsoft online office suite, stand a chance? The advantage is limited to the user familiarity with the desktop application. But they may have shot themselves in the foot because many users still aren't over keen on the ribbon UI.

To try Google Docs head to http://docs.google.com

Let us know what you think of Google Doc's by commenting below!

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Samsung Galaxy S3 Unpacking Event Teaser

Samsung will be showcasing their replacement for the Galaxy S2 smartphone at an event in London tomorrow. Engadget will be blogging live from the event for all the latest news. The highly anticipated handset release event even has it's own epic teaser trailer, just to build up the hype. The video is below.

iPad & 4G in the UK

The Advertising Standard's Authority are investigating Apple surrounding the advertisement of the new iPad, the BBC reports. The new hardware is capable of connecting to a multitude of wireless connections, Wi-Fi, 3G and 4G LTE. The most impressive of this list is the 4G technology. Apple distinguish their two versions of the iPad's connectivity options as:

  1. iPad (Wi-Fi)
  2. iPad (Wi-Fi + 4G)
However in the UK there are currently no 4G network providers, this is covered by a small note at the bottom of the page which lists networks operating a 4G service, and states which countries these operators are providing coverage to (USA and Canada). 

See the Apple store page yourself and feel free to comment below.