Posts Tagged ‘smartphone’


Samsung released the much awaited Gingerbread firmware update (DDJV6) for Indian users starting 31st May, 2011. The update is available via Kies.

SGS_GINGERBREAD_UPDATE_INDIA

My story starts ugly as Kies showed me the upgrade notification, but when I started the process it crashed in between saying “Firmware Update Stopped”.

When I contacted the customer care for the support the guy sounded more frightened than me. He told me he can not do anything and I should better visit their service center. I specifically remember him saying – “Sir, itna mehenga mobile hai. Yaha se nahi bata sakta. Agar kharab ho gaya to?”. (Sir, it is an expensive mobile. I cannot give you a solution on phone. What if it gets bricked?) They themselves don’t believe in Kies, what else to say? Now as rumors goes, the service center guys are the least helpful people in India. First of all, they would unnecessary keep your phone for at least 1 day and chances are they will probably screw up the whole thing to teach you a lesson for your mistake of affiliating with Samsung.

With such high standards of Samsung, it is a pain to see such an inexperienced unit of guys hired by them at the support level in India. They are a total waste.

I, instead, searched the net for a probable solution and tried reinstalling the software, tried different OSes and different system but it didn’t worked. What I didn’t try was doing a factory reset because I didn’t want to loose my data and apps. It might have solved the problem but still I didn’t take the chance.

So I was left with only one option – update the firmware via ODIN. For nearly one year, I avoided the use of this S/W for flashing ROM. There are so many custom Rom (Darky’s Rom is the best IMO) and stock Rom available but I stick to my region firmware, updated via Kies only. Froyo was so frustrating with the lags and hang ups and crashing at odd times. And I desperately wanted an upgrade and because of this impatience

I finally decided to update the Android 2.3.3 (DDJV6) firmware update via ODIN. After downloading the firmware (thanks to Sam Firmware) and ODIN, it took me only 5 minutes to flash my ROM with the awesome firmware Gingerbread.

Ginger bread upgrade

Now I can see a distinct up boost in performance. There are no lags. The touch is buttery smooth. I plugged in to Kies after manually updating the firmware. It is having no problem recognizing my phone and the firmware. It shows – "This is the latest firmware".

So concerns related to warranty are none. The best part was I didn’t loose any data or apps after the upgrade. All my contacts and messages along with all the apps were there much to my surprise.

But as always the case, I didn’t stop on this. I went ahead and a few hours ago wiped data and partition via recovery mode and lo! I had a nothing left with me. Thankfully, I had took a backup before on my SD card so I restored my contacts and messages but my apps are all gone and there is no remarkable speed boost. In fact, there is a strange zooming effect when I click on any icon or app to open. The touch is not that sensitive now. I don’t know the problem as of now. Will fiddle with the settings and see if there is anything that can be done from there.

In any case, I’ve Gingerbread ROM on my Galaxy S and it sure is fast and improved. In a matter of minutes I’m all praise for this nice upgrade. Now it’s time to play around on my refurnished mobile. Will keep you all updated.

Screen Shots

SC20110603-180814  SC20110603-222658   SC20110603-222712

 

Adieu!!!


market-homeAndroid market is the spine of android OS. Whether you are techy, a junkie, a gamer or just another guy who happens to own an android based mobile, you will need to visit the market to access its’ vast collections of applications. But just when you get a feeling of being the most powerful person, your source of power stops giving you the energy.

This is a serious problem that many of you may be facing or may encounter in the coming future on your android based mobile phone. Just one fine day, the android marketplace stop downloading apps for you and says “Downloading paused” or will stuck on plain starting download message. I faced it recently and searched the internet for possible solutions. Needless to say, there were a lot of solutions given. And fortunately, for me the easiest of them worked. You don’t need to do a factory reset or a hard reset to get your market app working.(Thank God and not Google for that Hot smile). I thought Google was good at this but they disappointed me Devil. They didn’t show any support on this issue.

Please follow the following steps:

Go to Settings =>Applications => Manage Application => Go to All applications

Search for all google applications like Gmail, Gtalk, Market.

Additionally you can also search for download Manager etc.

Hit Clear Data and if also clear cache if any.

Restart your phone.

Go to Gmail and if prompted for username and password, enter it with the existing username you were using or you can also use new username.

Now open market on your mobile. Start downloading. Hopefully it will work now.

I own a Samsung Galaxy S GT I9000. Call me

Please give your comments if this helps you. Or you may describe your experience with android.


Alas…Alas…Alas…

I had been waiting too eagerly, anxiously, impatiently for a Froyo 2.2 update for my Galaxy S but this news came like a thunder bolt hitting it hard on me. Now the update is delayed till late october.

This is not an official press release though, the news came in through Twitter (Samsung India)   and Facebook .

Those of you who cannot wait, there was leak earlier which can be installed, but I will better suggest to wait for an official release. Because the firmware leak is risky and has some features missing. Lags are still there. See here.

So for us all waiting for an update to Froyo (Android 2.2), the journey is still on. But I’m sure or atleast hope that Froyo update will bring out the hidden capabilities of Samsung galaxy and one willget  more enhanced and enriched experience than this gadget presently offers.

For complete review of Samsung Galaxy S I9000 – Click Here.


Mobile Phones have revolutionized the way we live. It certainly has gone a complete makeover since its initial debut and the current phase also tells the story of its evolution. It is no longer a device just for talking and messaging. Connectivity is no longer an issue and the plus point of entertainment embedded in it makes it a complete gadget of all times.

Whatever is your interest and liking and your budget, there is a mobile phone waiting for you at the store as per your need. A number of players are in the market today that manufactures world class mobile phones.

To classify them in categories, I would say we have 3 categories for mobile phones.

Tier I: Termed as Smartphones. Range from Rs. 15000 and above. Touch Screen, Qwerty, Social Networking Integration, 3G enabled, Data connectivity and transfer capability. Multimedia Player, Gaming etc.

Tier II: Middleware Mobile Phones. Range from Rs. 5000 – 15000. Touch Screen, Qwerty, Social Networking Integration, Data transfer capability, Multimedia capable, Gaming etc.

Tier III. Lower end phones. Range less than Rs. 5000. Basic features like calls, messaging, FM radio, PIM etc.

Here I will focus on players that have changed the world with this evolutionary gadget that is now a part of our everyday life.

This company is my fav if you ask. This is one company that has brought glamour and technology together in one gadget. Never before one has thought of smartphones the way they are today. If you talk of style and brand and quality, I will blindfoldedly opt for an Apple iPhone.

This finnish company has ruled the mobile market for long. Their product’s quality, reliability and easy interface makes it stand out well ahead of all competitors.Also the symbian OS has done miracles to them.

This is another player who has its reach to the masses when it comes to mobiles. Advance technology and stylish design are its USP. Though it went down in terms of research n development in between but recent releases shows that the wait is worth.

Another significant player in the mobile market. It has some customized and personalized series (like Walkman and Cyber Shot ) that made mobile phone to be used an entertainment device. As of today, it is the fourth largest mobile manufacturer in the world.

It has produced a class smartphone under the tag Blackberry. If you are in the corporate world, it is very likely for you to own one. BlackBerry is mainly a messaging phone with the largest array of messaging features in a Smartphone today. This includes auto-text, auto-correct, text prediction, support for many languages, keyboard shortcuts, text emoticons, push email, push facebook and Myspace notifications, push Ebay notifications, push instant messaging with BlackBerry Messenger, Google Messenger, ICQ, Windows Live messenger and Yahoo Messenger.

This company started in 1997 and made a strong push towards hand held devices. It has brought some of the finest technologies to wireless mobile world. Initially it produced window based phones, but recently it has shifted its interest towards Android also.

Other players also exist like LG, HTC, Motorola, iMate, O2 but I have my eyes set on these key players which I think are and will revolutionize the wireless technology.

So whether you are a coporate person or a music freak or likes to carry your digital media with you or just an average joe who likes to talk and messages, you are sure to find a phone for you today as per your need and budget.


There’s a lot of update that I’ll keep posting so watch out for more.

You might also like to read the comments section as  a lot of discussion and solutions are provided in there.

Finally, I bought my very first smartphone after a year long search and research. It is Samsung Galaxy S GT-I9000, a super cool 4” super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen smartphone.

IMO it is the best available model in the higher range. Let’s talk about its qualities and shortcomings:

Screen: The most striking feature of the phone is its 4” 16M colors Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen. It has a resolution of 480×800 pixels. So what you get is super smooth touch experience. Once you’ll use it I’m sure you’ll never like to switch to TFT screen. Even in broad daylight, the visibility is clear to some extent. The high pixel resolution makes for good legibility.

Operating System: Running on Android 2.1 (Éclair) with news of upgrade to Android 2.2 (Froyo) makes it a great choice. More importantly Samsung has its own 3.0 touchwiz UI interface over the OS for some great experience.

CPU: A huge 1 GHz Arm Cortex A8 Hummingbird processor makes sure the phone works fast and is capable of handling heavy tasks and applications without any grudge. Well, personally I don’t think so coz in my case I had to force close some applications because they stopped responding. (Well that’s me, so I think I went too harsh on the phone during testing.)

Network: Quad Band 2G and Tri Band 3G support

(2G – 850/900/1900/2100    ————     3G – 900/1900/2100)

Storage: A whooping 16 GB of internal storage (2 GB reserved for application installation). 512 MB of RAM. Option available to include a SD card also. It can support upto a massive 32GB. So rest assured you’ll never find yourself stuck with space crunch.

Camera: 5MP, 2592×1944 pixels primary camera and a 0.3 MP secondary camera on the front.

Misc: Other necessary features worth mentioning

WI-FI 802.11 b/g/n, DLNA

Bluetooth v3.0 with A2DP

Micro USB port

Stereo FM Radio with RDS

GPS with A-GPS support

Java via third party

Divx/Xvid codec compatible along with other codecs.

Shortcomings:

No flash with the camera.

No flash support for the browser

My Take:

The sleek design and a vibrant screen is no doubt a show stealer. I have got a lot of appreciation for the phone from my colleagues and even strangers. People just stop to have a glance at the phone. For me it’s a full paisa wasool.

Now let’s talk about my experience and testing.

The interface is simple and very handy to use. The large screen makes up for the lack of physical QWERTY keyboard by replacing it with a virtual keyboard. The touch sensitivity is a delight. The super AMOLED screen does wonders. The legibility is great even if compared outdoors. In short the whole browsing experience has been a sweet journey for me.

The android market has more than enough apps for you to experiment upon. With the update of Android 2.2, many more features will be added in no time, like for instance flash support for browser is there with Android 2.2

The annoying thing is if GPRS is enabled, it will automatically sync many applications with online Google account. Also the free GPS navigation is a no go. For the first time, I was billed Rs 30/- for a 2 minute usage. Ohhh boy frustration…I was asked to connect my calendar with Google account for the first time. I did it and immediately I was online on Gtalk and Gmail without my notice. It was when I started receiving updates and messages that I realized what has happened. In two days, I was billed with an amount of 200 bucks for the usage of GPRS only. So a word of caution to all who are planning to buy this phone (as a matter of fact, any phone running on android) should get an unlimited GPRS plan if you really want to use all the features of the phone.

As mentioned, the powerful CPU and big memory does make a difference. But upon installing a number of applications and games and movies, my phone has gone a bit slow. Some applications take a few seconds to open now (mind you my phone is just 2 weeks old.) So I’m not sure where the problem is but am certainly keeping my fingers crossed and hoping that Froyo update will relieve me from this lagging issue as it is advertised to be 2.5 times better than Éclair on performance and responsiveness.

Camera without flash is a lamp without Jeannie. The pictures taken are very clear on the screen but if transferred to computer, the details are not that fine. It’s like you can rub the lamp and lit it, but you’ll always left wishing for more. But that’s not an issue for me, as a normal user the quality is more than ok to me. However, things go bad in low light. So that’s a big let down from Samsung.

720p HD video recording is finally there. With 16GB storage plus 32GB extendable via SD card, you are sure to enjoy the moments without the worries of space. Video taken is of  great quality. As explained earlier, availability of flash would have an added advantage, but nonetheless, the videos are still good. There is another MMS recording mode which lets you record video on lower resolution but it is useless. The quality suffers a lot in that mode.

Now let us comes to games. A lot are there in market, both free and paid. As a true Indian I always go for free ones (:D 😀 :D). Asphalt, A-Team, Assassin Creed, Kick Boxing to name a few. A whole bunch is there for selection and am sure you’ll love your phone more when you see the grace with which it handles all these heavy apps. Java is available via third party application, which I am unable to find till now. Still searching for one. So Java enabled apps and games are not working right now.

The movie player is simple. Nothing funny in the interface. But the most important thing to note is the support for Divx/Xvid videos. Yes, even full length movies are playable on the player without any lag and also the audio/video sync is perfect even if you drag the video to any length. And I must tell you this but I felt proud again when I watched the movie on my phone. The colors are very crisp and vibrant. The clarity is awesome. Subtitles are also welcome. And the best thing is you don’t need to convert the video to any format or resolution. Direct download and play. Wow…it’s the best. The phone supports a lot other codec too like flv, mkv, mpg, mp4 but for most you have to download additional codec. I downloaded them from market and the videos are all playable on my phone.

This phone is packed with a lot of other sundry features. Every other day I discover some new functionality or process. I must say I am quite mesmerized by this device. Its potential is unmatched to any other device right now.

Finally, while concluding the final thing that needs to be mentioned is the 1500 mAh battery which last for around 1 day on normal usage. Playing games, watching videos, using GPS or WI-FI drains the battery quickly but that is quite expected. Nonetheless, if you decide to buy a white elephant, you should be ready and prepared to feed him. So I would suggest one to be geared with USB charger all the time. It is not that much of a load I guess, is it?

Last but not the least, if you have any query or doubt, feel free to drop them in comments section and will be happy to help you in any way I can.


Update: Asphalt on I9000 – I have been watching carefully on the search words and found this game to be one of the most searched one. Let me tell you playing Asphalt 5 on I9000 is a great experience. There is no lag what so ever. Thanx to the great H/W spec.

Update 2: Many video formats including flv, mpg, mpeg etc are not playable on the default player. I installed another player named RockPlayer that can play them for me. After installing the player, flv formats started playing on the default player also but not other formats. Also Xvid Video was not playing smooth. So I guess its not that optimized as advertised. I had to tweak a lot to get the formats played on my phone.

Update 3: While writing the review, I didn’t fully explored the camera features. I apologize for that. The camera comes bundled with interesting features that helps to enhance the picture quality. Except the lowlight disadvantage (absence of flash), the camera is good otherwise. Also for video recording it has got a lot of features and recording mode. I am still in the hang of it.

Update 4: About the GPS – I think this is one thing that Samsung didn’t pay attention to while launching this phone. I tried the GPS outside and it locked on to my location in some 1 minute –  accurately. The navigation was quite smooth. But things go ugly when using it inside the room. It doesn’t lock my location many a times and even if it does so, it’s not accurate. I don’t know if its a Hardware issue or a software issue. If H/W issue, then its something we all Galaxy owner have to live it with and if it’s a S/W issue then what the hell are you waiting for Samsung, haven’t you recieved the news yet. Need a firmware urgently…

Update 5: Layer Reality Browser: Used it today and I’m impressed with it. What a cool app it is. It has some great layers that you can use to get information about your surroundings or to just have some fun. The Layar Reality Browser shows what is around you by displaying real time digital information on top of the real world as seen through the camera of your mobile phone. This technology is called Augmented Reality. We augment the real world as seen through your mobile phone, based on your location.

Keep watching for more updates….


Dell Streak – Hits the market in UK on June 4th, 2010. A tablet phone with 5” wide screen running on Android 1.6 (upgradeable to 2.2 Froyo).

I being a techno gadget freak, in a quick foxy action searched the entire web to know about it and there are quite a few impressing and remarkable things I got to know.

So without wasting any more time I am moving on to its initial reviews and features that I gathered:

The first and foremost thing is its 5” capacitive touch screen. Is it a smartphone or a tablet PC, well I’d say it is definitely a smartphone. The large screen is pretty impressive as I could see from several video demonstrations with pretty good visibility even under sunlight.

Which brings me to another feature of the mobile – Camera. It’s bundled with a 5MP camera, dual LED flash and a VGA secondary camera for video calling. The picture & video quality is good.The nightshots are hopeless though. It supports a number of formats for playback (going by the review of some users, it also support DivX format, though external codecs needs to be installed). It was found to be erring during playback of some full length movies of H264 format, but WMV works just good and clear. But nothing to fret, these are just software issues and Dell guys can fix this easily, I guess.

The phone can be used in both portrait and landscape mode and given the jumbo size, landscape usage seems right. The virtual keyboard has also got a numeric keypad which is the first ever of its kind, but unfortunately it’s not convenient to use. There should have been an option to hide it. As of know there isn’t one.

No FM is there, and the specs are not clear if the hardware is present or not.

A 3G enabled set is bound to have a heavy usage and the effect shows on the battery. But on initial speculations I found the power to be impressive.

Also 2.2 Froyo update is in the air. Flash support is also coming in few weeks.

The CPU is mighty Qualcomm Snapdragon 1GHz, which makes sure that you have a delightful usage of the phone.

Another important feature I would like to mention is the memory. Well this cute gadget has got 512MB Rom, 512MB Ram, a 2GB non-accessible memory for applications installation and a 16GB SD card.

Other features worth mentioning are:

GPS

Yes – with A-GPS support

Wi-Fi

Yes. 802.11 b/g

Bluetooth

Yes v2 with A2DP

JAVA

Yes with MIDP 2.0

3G

HSDPA, 7.2 Mbps; HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps

GPRS/EDGE

Class 12

Speakerphone

Yes, 3.5mm audio jack

And in the end, the exciting part. The screen is made up of Gorilla glass, which is said to be unbreakable and scratch proof. Believe me I saw a video  where an engadget engineer tortured the streak screen by banging  a pen tip furiously all over and nothing happened to it. Not a single scratch.

The gadget looks promising and is here to stay. I after a long search of 1 year, am feeling like I got a smartphone of my choice. Am waiting for its release in India.

General 2G Network GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
3G Network HSDPA 900 / 2100
HSDPA 850 / 1900 / 2100
Announced 2010, May
Status Available. Released 2010, June
Size Dimensions 152.9 x 79.1 x 10 mm
Weight 220 g
Display Type TFT capacitive touchscreen
Size 480 x 800 pixels, 5.0 inches
– Accelerometer sensor for UI auto-rotate
– Multi-touch input method
– Proximity sensor for auto turn-off
– Touch sensitive controls
Sound Alert types Vibration; MP3 ringtones
Speakerphone Yes
– 3.5 mm audio jack
Memory Phonebook Practically unlimited entries and fields, Photocall
Call records Practically unlimited
Internal 16 GB storage, 512 MB ROM, 512 MB RAM
Card slot microSD, up to 32GB, buy memory
Data GPRS Class 12 (4+1/3+2/2+3/1+4 slots), 32 – 48 kbps
EDGE Class 12
3G HSDPA, 7.2 Mbps; HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps
WLAN Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g
Bluetooth Yes v2.0 with A2DP
Infrared port No
USB Yes, v2.0
Camera Primary 5 MP, 2592х1944 pixels, autofocus, dual-LED flash
Features Geo-tagging, face and smile detection
Video Yes
Secondary VGA videocall camera
Features OS Android OS, v1.6, upgradable to v2.2 (Froyo)
CPU Qualcomm Snapdragon QSD8250 1 GHz processor
Messaging SMS(threaded view), MMS, Email, IM
Browser HTML
Radio No
Games Yes
Colors Black, Red
GPS Yes, with A-GPS support
Java Yes, MIDP 2.0
– Digital compass
– Social networking integration
– MP4/H.263/H.264/WMV player
– MP3/WAV/eAAC+/WMA player
– Google Search, Maps, Gmail,
– YouTube, Google Talk
– QuickOffice document viewer
– Photo viewer/editor
– Adobe Flash 10.1
– Organizer
– Voice memo/dial
– T9
– Home dock with HDMI out and car charger in the retail package
Battery Standard battery, Li-Ion 1530 mAh

It’s been an year since I’ve been looking for a smartphone which bundles every possible features of a phone and multimedia device with new cutting edge technology. But alas, I haven’t found a single one which promises to deliver all of them in a single bundle. Well I would prefer to wait for a perfect device than just go on for any device but I certainly have gained a lot on the hot tech.

Here I am compiling all the information that a possible buyer should keep in mind before spending their hard earned moolahs on such high end devices.

The very first point, that is subtle is what’s your need. High performance business profile mobile or entertainment mobile. Why I’m saying this is if you need a mobile for your specific purpose then this splitting can reduce your cost impressively. If only, you are a technology freak and really have yourself ready for the complete experience, you should buy an expensive smartphone.  Having said that now let’s have a detailed look on different features that you may want to have on your phone. ( In no particular order)

  1. Touch screen: The most sought after feature these days. The touch screen is In these days. Mostly there are two types of them: Resistive and Capacitive. You should really check the sensitivity of touch and the response time before buying.
  2. QWERTY Keyboard: It’s not mandatory, but its inclusion is always a delight. And if combined with a touch screen, there could be nothing else you would want. But due to the space crunch, the keys are very small and a speedy texting comes only after practice. Ergonomics is also considered here.
  3. Operating System: A lot of operating systems are coming and evolving these days. The good old symbian is no longer the show stopper. With the recent release of Android, Maemo, Bada and the prevalent Windows Mobile OS, the competition has become tough. Each one has a number of functionality that makes it stand uniquely in the crowd but it is a problem in itself. When everyone is unique in its own term, the “being special” feeling is lost. Moreover, they all have got a serious limitations of their own when it comes to mobile operations. For instance,  Android OS does not support video calling as of now. Now in this 3G era why would one look for a mobile without a secondary camera. Symbian OS has its limitation when its come to touch screen technology. Maemo is not fully developed. So it is good if you choose the operating system considering that it should always allow you to upgrade when required.
  4. Processor: Again these high end devices demand a heavy processor. Arm Cortex, Snapdragon and likes are favourite.
  5. Memory: A lot is required. SD cards in the range of 2-32 GB are supported. But the catch is mostly you’ll not be able to install any apps on these cards. The installation can only be done on internal memory which usually is under 1 GB. Nokia, Samsung, Apple do have come up with internal storage of upto 32 GB. But it’s not available in all the models. While for storage a decent 8-16 GB suffice all your needs, the real bugger is application installation. So keep in mind the limitation.
  6. Camera: Who would have thought that a normal device once used for talking could also serve as a moment catcher for you. Wherever you are, you can snap or record those moments of your life and relive them again and again. Though the mobile can’t serve as a replacement for professional photography, but I must say for the normal masses it is a great feature bundled in. A 5 MP camera can do all you can possibly expect from your device. Things you should look for is flash, the quality of lenses used and the stability of photographs. Video recording is also possible and the quality is more than Ok. Also look out for a secondary camera.
  7. GPS: GPS navigator is one cool application, a must have for today’s smartphone.
  8. Miscellaneous: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, JAVA compatible, flash support, codecs  supported and other  such applications and features.

I very much wanted to write in detail about all the specifications, but that’ll make the article lengthy and too technical. So I have just jotted down the main features in brief here. Would love to hear how you liked the article? Also if you have any query, you can ask me. I’ll try my best to give you a prompt and plausible answer.