Hints & Tips, Travel

Why Phone Security Matters Abroad

When leaving the country to travel abroad, everyone knows they need their passport. However, what is the next essential thing you make sure you have with you? Your smartphone probably. In the world of connectivity, instant messaging and sharing, you use your smartphone as an extension of yourself. It contains all the resources to stay connected to everyone, your personal details, your photos… and probably a lot of other sensitive information. When abroad, your smartphone becomes the ultimate travel companion; your navigator, your translator, your currency convertor.

However, how do you protect your phone when travelling abroad and why is it so important? Your phone is probably the single most valuable device you carry around; that could lead to a whole load of trouble if anything on it, including the device itself, fell into the wrong hands. Yet without leaving your device at home, which definitely sounds counterintuitive, what can be done to protect your data while you travel? Below are some of the ways you can protect your phone security abroad.

  1. Leave Your Phone at Home

Don’t do this really, we know you don’t want to, and with so many other good alternatives that will keep you secure, you really don’t need to.

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  1. Don’t Trust WiFi

Avoid free and public WiFi no matter the cost. WiFi in public spaces, restaurants and hotels are easy prey for anyone lurking waiting for naïve travelers to connect to. Potential network hackers could easily obtain your data if you’re not careful; this could be anything from monitoring your activity to stealing personal data that could lead to identity theft. To ensure your WiFi connection is safe and secure, get yourself a portable MiFi device.

  1. Use a VPN

As stated above, anyone on the same network as you, potentially a few hundred if you’re using public/ free WiFi, has the ability to intercept and grab your unencrypted data. To eliminate the risk of this, you can use a VPN. A virtual private network will protect you against hackers as it acts as your own personal shield – giving you a connection that only you have access to. It’s essentially your own private tunnel, away from the streams of others.

To use a VPN, you will need to download and install a VPN app onto your device, start it up once you’re connected to the internet and then choose a server. Although you will need to be connected to the internet (whether this be public or free), a VPN puts a protective shield around you and your data. Your data becomes encrypted, avoiding all the risks of open WiFi. Additionally, a VPN can also be helpful if you’re travelling to countries that may have blocked internet access. A VPN can change your IP address and allow access to sites such a Netflix.

  1. Switch SIM Cards

Opting to switch out your SIM will protect some of your data in the unfortunate case of theft or loss. Internal storage is safe if you back up your device before travelling, but we’ll get to this in a minute. Choosing to get another SIM, probably a local in-country SIM will give you a temporary phone number but the benefits speak for themselves; it protects your data, gets you cheaper call and roaming rates in-country and you could get one on a pay as you go basis. You also have choice, you could opt for a data only SIM or a voice only SIM, depending on what you need. You could also get a SIM card that works in a number of countries, one that can quickly change network providers so you always get the best possible connection. Doing this of course, will also avoid using un-trusted public WiFi.

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  1. Turn Off Roaming

Disabling your data roaming abroad will limit your data usage and may ease you while travelling; knowing that you won’t return home to a steep bill. From 2017, EU citizens can roam for no additional charges while in Europe, so if this is applies to you, you are safe to leave roaming on.

What is Roaming?

While abroad, your home network provider can’t travel with you, instead your connection will be run by a different, local, network operator. Partnering providers, your home operator, and the operator your device switches to abroad, will charge each other to cover the cost of ‘traffic’ for them having to support you. This will incur your home operator charging you this cost.

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  1. Back Everything Up Beforehand

Often an oversight to many travelers, make sure you back up your device prior to travelling. This is in case your phone does go missing, you can quickly restore a new, replacement device with all your stored details on. For example, you can restore from iCloud on an iPhone if needs be.

As a sub-point, make sure your device is running the latest software. Software updates usually include security enhancements and bug fixes, this will help reduce the chance of your connection being hacked. Also, give your device a passcode, preferably a long one; it’s better to be safe than sorry!

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  1. Take Action Against Theft & Loss

For all the power that phones bring us; connecting us to the world, keeping us productive, taking pictures etc, it’s often overlooked that they are small handheld devices. Easily misplaced or dropped or, worse case scenario; stolen. We’ve all been there when we go to grab our pockets and experience the ghost feeling if our phone is missing. This experience is only heightened when you travel, and for good reason, you’re in new atmosphere where you don’t know the place or the people.

  • Tell your Network Provider

The first thing to do if you’re phone goes walkabout is to call / text it. If it has just been lost, you might be lucky and find a kind stranger has found it. If this has happened then, voila you can get it back. If the persistent calling and texting doesn’t work, tell your network provider. They can then block your phone so you don’t risk paying for any unauthorized usage while it’s been out of your hands. They might ask you for your device’s identification number (IMEI) so they can track it, so make sure you take a note of it!

  • Track and Wipe Your Phone

After notifying your network provider and they’ve said they will block your SIM, it might be wise to remotely track and wipe your phone. Both Apple and Android give you the option to ‘Find My Phone’. If the phone is on, you will be able to see the exact location where your phone is. Unfortunately, if your phone is turned off, this won’t be available. On the latest iOS update for Apple users, there is an option to activate ‘Lost Mode’ through Find My iPhone, this feature will remotely lock your device. At a final resort, you should remotely wipe your device. You will be able to restore a replacement device up to your last back up.

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  • Change Your Passwords

Lastly, just for extra protection, change your passwords on important sites such as email, banking, and other apps, just for extra protection in case someone has been able to access your phone.

Hints & Tips, Travel

A Beginner’s Guide to Apple Wallet

Are you finally ready to take the plunge into the world of Apple Pay?

With the invention of the Apple Wallet, you need to remember one less essential item when you leave the house; pay in-store and online using your phone for a faster, more convenient check out. First things first you’ve got to successfully get your cards into the wallet to get started! We’ve got you covered with a completely fool proof step-by-step guide to help you get it right first time….

  1. For iPad, iPod and of course, iPhone here’s what to do:
      • Open up the Wallet app
      • Tap + or Add Credit or Debit Card
      • Tap Continue to progress and add your card

      • Hold your card in front of you device’s camera so it fills the white box. Ensure you hold them still and have good lighting for the most effective results.
      • Double check the card number and name entered are correct and tap Next
      • Enter your card’s Expiry Date and CVC number (three digit number on the back of your card)
      • Read and the tap Agree to the Terms & Conditions
      • Tap Next. Now your bank or card issuer will verify your information and decide if you can use your card with Apple Pay. If your bank or issuer needs more information to verify your card, they’ll ask you for it. When you have the information, go back to Wallet and tap your card. This security check is another way of protecting you against fraudulent activity.
      • Pick your verification method and either tap Text Message or E-mail to receive a confirmation code.
      • Wait…
      • Enter the six digit verification code (which will expire in 30 mins)
      • Click Done
      • Go into Settings and scroll down to Wallet & Apple Pay (it should be underneath iCloud and iTunes & App store)
      • Make any changes you want:
        • Allow Touch ID for payments
        • Allow Access When Locked by tapping Double-Click Home Button to green
        • Add new cards or allow Payments on Mac
        • Altering the Default Card, shipping address, email and phone number
      • Et voila! You are now able to used Apple Pay!

  1. You can also activate Apple Pay on your WATCH or Mac!
    • WATCH:
      • Open up the Apple WATCH App on your iPhone
      • Go on My Watch tab and Select the watch you want (if you own multiple)
      • Tap Wallet then tap Apple Pay
      • Follow the same steps to add your card
      • After your bank or issuer verifies your card, tap Next. Then start using Apple Pay.
    • Mac:
      • Apple Pay is only available on a MacBook Pro with Touch ID
      • Go to System Preferences and click Wallet & Apple Pay.
      • Tap Add Card
      • Follow the steps to add your card
      • After your bank or issuer verifies your card, tap Next. Then start using Apple Pay.

  1. Next step: Add Tickets and Gift Cards to Wallet
    • Simply click download on a ticket you have received, most likely in an email confirmation, and then tap Add to Wallet. Your tickets will now be easy to find and use!
    • To make the most of Apple Pay tap the + in the top right of your screen
    • Tap Find Apps for Wallet, this will take you to the App Store
    • All the Apps listed are com patible with Apple Pay and offer rewards and loyalty Just add them to your Wallet and use the barcode online or in store!
Hints & Tips, Travel

9 reasons to buy the Samsung Galaxy S9

Are you looking for an excuse to splash out on a new phone? Well, here are nine reasons why you should consider treating yourself to the new Samsung Galaxy S9…

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  1. Samsung Screen

The Samsung Galaxy S9’s screen is nothing short of genius. The curved glass wraps the display neatly around the sides of the phone, delivering the ‘Infinity display’. This, in combination with a clean aluminum frame, really gives the device a luxury quality.

In the 5.8-inch screen, the AMOLED panel depicts incredibly vibrant, bright and accurate colors. The S9 has a Quad HD+ (2,960 × 1,440 pixel) resolution, which means it’s actually sharper than its larger S9+ counterpart because it packs more pixels in (570 pixels-per-inch to be exact).

  1. New and improved Software

The curved display proves excellent not only when viewing stunning photographs, but also when viewed with the advancements in the S9’s software, especially with regards to watching TV and Gaming. The S9 supports HDR10, so apps like Netflix, YouTube, and HBO with HDR10 content look their absolute best on this phone and the Snapdragon 845 chip boasts bigger graphics improvements. Games run without a hitch and the phone doesn’t get too warm after you’ve been playing for a while.

The Snapdragon 845 also truly shines with fast performance across the board; whether you are playing graphic-intensive games or simultaneously using Multi Window and Android Oreo’s floating window for YouTube playback, the Galaxy S9 won’t fail to keep up. In summary, this is the fastest phone made by Samsung to date.

  1. Easy to handle

It’s really easy to get your hands on the S9. Thanks to the small and compact 5.8-inch display and smooth curved edges, the S9 is easy and comfortable to use in one hand. However, due to the elongated 18.5:9 aspect ratio, this device still offers a lot of screen to look at. The handling of this device is further improved by the conveniently placed power button on the right edge, Bixby button on the left edge and most importantly, the new location of the fingerprint sensor. Now, the fingerprint scanner and camera are setup vertically, as opposed to horizontally as we saw with the S8, making it easier to swipe the sensor and not the camera. But, if you prefer a ‘the bigger the better approach’ the S9 Plus is the phone for you.

For those who are used to older phones with physical controls, the pressure-sensitive virtual home button provides a familiar feeling; making the transition to on-screen keys feel more natural.

  1. Great Durability

The materials used to produce this phone are an improvement on those of the S8. The screen maintains the high resolution display using the bright and vibrant Super AMOLED panel. The upgrade is the use of Gorilla Glass 5; this is a big step forward in the device’s durability. This screen is more capable than its predecessor at enduring the knocks and drops of everyday life. In addition, the aluminium frame creates a more robust construction.

The device is also water and dust resistant; great for peace of mind if you enjoy the outdoors… or you’re clumsy! IP (Ingress Protection) is a universally accepted measure of dust and liquid resistance and with the S9 and S9+ having a rating of IP68, it’s safe to say your phone can be protected from adventurous conditions.

  1. Fantastic Photos and Super Slow Motion Video

The Plus offers a dual-camera system that has features such as 2x optical zoom and a Portrait Mode for a blurred background effect. The Live Focus and Selective Focus features are also superior on the S9+. However, these benefits come at a price.

Even though the S9 has one lens instead of two like the S9+, it sure does pack quite a punch. The killer single 12-megapixel camera with variable aperture takes stunning photographs. At f/1.5, the S9 features the widest aperture available on a smartphone currently; meaning it can absorb more light and produce high quality images. You can manually switch apertures in the camera’s Pro mode and the default aperture setting is generally f/2.4. But, when the camera detects low light, it will automatically switch to f/1.5 aperture (the lower the number the wider the aperture). This feature helps makes the S9’s camera superior in comparison to many other smartphones on the market today; its ability to capture noticeably brighter, high quality photographs.

The Super Slow motion video feature is remarkable with this phone. You can slow down a video clip to 960 frames per second at 720p resolution for 0.2 seconds; that’s 32 times slower than real life! The S9 camera lens will automatically detect action in a frame and will slow it down for you – simple! Alternatively, you could use the manual mode to do it yourself. The most exciting part about this feature is the variety of things you can do with the video after it’s been shot. You can loop the clip, swing it back and forth or reverse it.

  1. Intelligent scan

The S9 offers a triple threat of identity authentication; iris scanning, facial recognition and fingerprint sensor. The new improvements in this feature are the relocation of the finger scanner and the introduction of ‘Intelligent scan’. Now, facial and iris scanning are combined, so if one fails the S9 will simply default to the other saving you the trouble of having to start again!

  1. Make it your own!

The S9 has done a stellar job in creating an attractive array of glossy colours and hues for you to choose from. Midnight Black, Coral Blue and Lilac Purple are stand-out and will have you admiring your phone more than you realise possible.

If these colours aren’t enough for you, the S9’s customisation options for graphics and layouts are endless and allow for true personalisation. From the size of your apps to the font and colour of the time icon, you can add your artistic flare to every aspect of this phone.

  1. Bonus features

This phone will make your life easier – wave goodbye to the burden of iPhone dongles… the S9 has a headphone jack! The S9 has also developed to cater to those who prefer to listen to music out loud with the new stereo sound speaker. The top earpiece works with the speaker at the bottom of the device, AKG-tuned, Dolby Atmos audio is said to be 1.4 times louder than the S8. Music is easily room-filling, with a rich and clear sound and when you watch Atmos-optimized content, the audio seems to physically surround you.

  1. Won’t burn a hole in your pocket

At £739 and £869, the devices save you around £200 when compared to their closest rival – the iPhone X! With interesting software, design and a superior camera, it’s fair to say that you get your money’s worth with this phone.

Hints & Tips, Travel, US News

What’s all the fuss about VoLTE and WiFi Calling?

VoLTE:

Although it sounds complicated, VoLTE is simply ‘voice calls over 4G LTE network’ and 4G LTE is today’s fastest connection available for wireless networks. 4G means fourth generation of data technology for cellular networks (following 3G, third generation). LTE stands for Long-Term Evolution, a technical process for high-speed data for phones and other mobile devices. Combined, 4G and LTE create the fastest and highest quality connection available with the ability to download up to 100 megabits per second –very speedy! Read on to find out more details about how VoLTE works and what the benefits are…

  1. Superior quality – easier to hear and be heard on calls.

The quality of voice calls transmitted over VoLTE is a big improvement on what we have heard previously. The connection captures sound waves twice as fast as other calls and by using a wider range of frequencies, its able to better match the range of pitch and tone in human speech. This allows for much more data to be transferred; three times more than 3G and five times more than 2G, creating a HD rich experience.

The HD voice also reduces background noise, so that, even on the busiest of streets the background noise is kept to a minimum, which makes the person’s voice ‘crystal-clear’, as if you are talking face-to-face.

  1. Improved coverage and connectivity – faster and further reaching

VoLTE connects twice as fast and has a much greater range of coverage. This is largely down to the fact that 2G and 3G connections are still available when there isn’t a 4G connection available. Without the other connections, it is not always possible to make and receive calls; an issue that standard 4G users should be aware of (due to the varying frequencies).

VoLTE is dependent on networks, making it very far reaching. It is estimated that the 4G network will cover 95% of the UK by 2020 – excellent news for anyone with a 4G network, especially for those looking to upgrade to  4G LTE.

  1. Faster speeds – multi-task with ease and speed

Due to the new ability to use data and mobile networks simultaneously, you can multi-task with apps and phone calls at a faster pace than ever. Now, when you get lost, you can phone a friend AND use Maps… at the same time! Most importantly, you can do this without compromising the quality of connection of your voice call or the speed of your Maps application. A whole new meaning to hands free… free to navigate!

  1. Battery life – stay charged for longer

4G users could see an improvement in their battery life. Making calls on 4G requires a lot of switching of networks; on a call 4G has to switch to 2G or 3G and then back to 4G once the call had ended. This process of switching drains an excessive amount of battery. The VoLTE system is much more efficient in comparison – ideal for when you’re on the move and need to stay connected!

  1. New and improved features – video calling and much more…

It’s never been easier to video call! When you have VoLTE you’re able to video call over mobile number (rather than through apps like facetime or skype). This means you can video call and receive video calls from anyone with any device (even between IPhone and Android) as long as they also  have VoLTE, just as you would with a voice call.

There are also many new ideas and possibilities in the works for VoLTE. Just as video phone calls could become the ‘norm’, other new rituals may grow native to the dialler e.g. Rich Communication Services (or RCS’s) such as file transferring, real time language translation and video voicemail (as well as ideas for applications which haven’t even been conceived yet).

Wi-Fi Calling is a little different…

Not having signal is not an issue when you have Wi-Fi calling. Like VoLTE relies on having mobile signal, Wi-Fi Calling relies on being connected to Wi-Fi hotspot (wireless internet network) and having a compatible device.

The Benefits – simple and convenient

Once you have the latest Wi-Fi Calling software – it’s simple! You can call, text, and send picture messages just as normal whenever you see the Wi-Fi indicator in the top left of your screen. So in environments that rarely have mobile signal, such as a rural location or a basement flat, on the London Underground or inside an old building with thick walls, you can still make quality calls over the Wi-Fi network.

With Wi-Fi and 4G Calling, you’ll automatically switch seamlessly and uninterrupted between Wi-Fi Calling and 4G network coverage (whichever has the strongest connection) to continue your call on the move. However, it’s only available on particular devices and networks, so just contact your network provider to find out if you’re eligible to upgrade.

Education, Hints & Tips, Travel, US News

What is 5G, how can it be used and why do you need it?

5G to those inexperienced in the technology field refers to fifth generation mobile networks and is essentially a development upon the previous mobile network generation. With that in mind and many new features and benefits promised with the introduction of 5G, it is no surprise that the launch is eagerly anticipated! Therefore this blogpost has been carefully designed to provide you with essential details surrounding 5G, ranging from its release date to how it could benefit you.

When will 5G become available?

The 5G networks are already in the testing phase of their development and it is expected that the earliest 5G ready smartphones could enter the market later in 2018, with 5G becoming more widespread in spring 2019. With that said it could be just 9 months before 5G becomes readily available for you (too long to wait, we know!).  The US as a nation is lucky enough to be one of the opening beneficiaries of 5G, alongside other countries such as China, Japan and South Korea- hopefully that makes the long and anxious wait for 5G that little bit easier!

What speeds will 5G offer its users?

Consumers lucky enough to access 5G in the near future will be able to take advantage of significantly increased speeds than those offered by the predecessor 4G. Users currently operating a device equipped with 4G connections can benefit from theoretical network speeds of up to 300Mbps on an advanced 4G LTE Network (is it really that slow?), whereas 5G will provide smartphone users with download speeds potentially over 100 times as fast (we are being serious, I promise!). Such speedy connections will facilitate the connection of multiple Internet of Things solutions such as Smart Receptions and Buildings. For those enjoying leisure and free time, the transition to the 5G Network will also be beneficial for streaming video content- almost eliminating the inconvenient stresses of buffering and lag time.

Broadband Solutions

Tired of unreliable broadband or WiFi connections in your home? Are you forever waiting for files to download or emails to send? You could be in luck, 5G is sure to form a welcome addition into your life! The introduction of 5G into the market is being heavily tipped as an eventual replacement service for your current home internet service- could this be the answer to all your internet speed problems? The honest answer is yes, but you could have to wait a while longer (quite a while longer!) with progress on this development very much in the trial stage, although both AT&T and Verizon having invested heavily into this.

What can 5G achieve?

It is suspected 5G will be pivotal to achieving a wide range of technological enhancements, with uses ranging from practicalities to leisure activities. One leisure activity in particular where 5G can be used to improve the overall user experience is that of Virtual Reality or VR for short. Virtual Reality is a concept that has been developing continually for a number of years, however it is alleged that with the introduction of a 5G network, users of VR will be able to benefit from access to live chats in real worlds- indicating further advancements in VR. On a level of practicality, 5G can be used to enhance the functionality of self-driving cars. Once launched 5G is suspected to speed up the development of self-driving cars, with each vehicle being equipped with sensors- facilitating communication with other vehicles and also the ability to track location. With that said 5G provides the perfect opportunity to avoid that awkward conversation with a taxi driver!

Alter your Data Plan!

Whilst it is apparent 5G will bring a wide range of advantages to those fortunate enough to access it, it will be a heavy form of data consumption (don’t say we didn’t warn you!). It is foreseen that the benefits associated with 5G will mean that the fifth generation of mobile networks will be nothing short of a data guzzler! People who regularly use up or exceed their current data plan, would consume their entire month’s data allowance in under a week, should they use 5G to the same extent and with the same sized data bundle- you have been warned!  5G is incoming, it’s time to start saving!

Upgrade your Phone!

In order to have access to a 5G connection, you will be required to upgrade to a device that is capable of supporting 5G. It is heavily anticipated that most devices launched and available for sale/rental from 2019 will be compatible with 5G, therefore by the time 5G becomes widespread, identifying a device capable of supporting 5G will be straightforward. Whilst having to upgrade to a new device may involve higher financial implications, the benefits of using 5G will definitely make your investment worthwhile- just think of those download speeds!

 

Education, Hints & Tips, Travel, US News

What is Iridium Certus and how can it be used?

Introducing Iridium Certus

Exciting news is set to arrive in the telecoms industry, with Earth surface wide providers of voice and data coverage to satellite phones, Iridium, pledging to invest $3 billion into researching and developing an upgrade of their satellite network. The proposed development which is set to be the biggest of Iridium’s Satellite Network in 20 years, is believed to be available as early as June 2018, although it is not expected that all desired services will be fully functional by then. Iridium has aptly named this development Certus (which is originally derived from Latin and translates to mean translates ‘sure’ or ‘certain’).  With a $3 billion upgrade on the cards, it’s time to find out what’s involved and how Iridium Certus will be used- and above all will it prove to be a ‘certain’ success!

How does it work?

The $3 billion revamp of Iridium’s satellite network, will focus on creating a brand new network of brand new satellites located in the earths low orbit (66 to be precise!), which is enabled by the Iridium NEXT. It has been estimated that Iridium Certus will be capable of providing its users with broadband speeds reaching the dizzy heights of 1.4 Mbps (this is astoundingly fast for Satellite!). The aforementioned 66 low orbit satellites, coupled with L-band transmissions from its user ensures that the Certus network will not be damaged or interrupted as a result of adverse weather conditions. On top of this, through using L-band connectivity, Iridium Certus intends to provide an innovative broadband service, designed to serve the entire earth- you really can stay connected wherever you are!

Where will it work?

The innovative nature of Iridium Certus combined with a great deal of research and development has enabled Iridium to provide a service with capabilities facilitating usage over both land and sea, as well as taking you to aviation heights! With that said, you’ll struggle to find an industry unable to take advantage of Certus’ perks!

Land: With a goal of connecting the entire planet, Iridium Certus could prove to be an imperative tool across multiple industries, with almost every land based sector catered for. It is envisaged that Iridium Certus will provide a perfect solution whether its service is required for personal, commercial or military usage. The versatility of Iridium Certus will guarantee connection in the remotest of locations aiding deliveries and the like for individual and corporate purposes- worried about a lost delivery, never again! Another core user able to benefit from Iridium Certus is response units and will prove to serve as an effective means of communication during day to day emergencies. Additionally Iridium Certus will be paramount to response units addressing periods of crisis and natural disasters; not only will this facilitate situational awareness, it will also allow for potential lifesaving information to be transferred. Furthermore, Iridium intends for Certus to be used in Military training exercises before being incorporated into military operations. Is there really a land based situation where Iridium Certus can’t be taken advantage of?

Sea: Setting sail from the shore and worrying about a lack of connection? Think again! Shipping or cruising, commercial or leisure, Iridium Certus is sure to meet your needs when sailing the seven seas. The L-band frequency incorporated into Iridium Certus means that weather will not influence the quality of connection- an essential factor to consider when out at sea! This uninterrupted access to connection provided by Certus, makes the service suitable for shipping and leisure purposes alike, ranging from navigational and sensory devices to simply checking emails or browsing the web. Iridium Certus also prides itself on being able to provide connections to businesses with off shore bases such as rigs, these are utilized by operated unmanned sensors- gone are the days of being isolated for months off shore!

Air: Internet connection whilst on the plane? Never has a long haul flight flown by quicker (pardon the aerospace pun!). It is envisaged that Iridium Certus will have the capabilities to provide high speed broadband to aircrafts. Iridium Certus provides the perfect solution to keeping both crew and travelers connected whilst in the air. The adaptability and size of Iridium Certus, has led to the design of miniature antennas sized less than 6 cm in height- this makes Certus the ideal solution for providing broadband connectivity on aircraft regardless of shape or size! With its benefits of passenger occupancy and malleable installation, the question on all of our minds really is how long will it be before Certus becomes a mainstay in air travel?

Summary

With an innovative approach fueled by extensive investment, Iridium Certus offers huge potential across a range of different fields (oceans and heights!) of industry. The ability to serve as a useful tool and provide connection to such a broad range of businesses and individuals alike, creates the perfect pre requisites to help Iridium achieve its objective of connecting the entire planet! It would be fair to say Iridium Certus is ‘sure’ to be a ‘certain’ success!

Education, Hints & Tips, US News

Android or iOS: The best choice for you

Android or iOS? iPhone or other? These are questions/arguments that are hotly contested and widely debated throughout society! Whether in the office, socializing with friends or even at the family dinner table it’s a subject that’s come up before and is sure to have ended in disagreement. With that said this blogpost is designed to settle this argument once and for all- whether there’s a clear winner (we’ve all got our favourite!), or the pros and cons of both user interfaces are identified remains to be seen! As to whether we can help you have a change of heart or mind also remains to be seen- we’ll certainly aim to help you find the best choice for you!

Personal Assistant:

Talking to your smartphone and using at as a go to source of research is an increasingly popular trend- please welcome the Personal Assistant! The obvious comparison here is between the generic Personal Assistant for Android’s, Google Assistant and iOS’s Personal Assistant Siri. In Google Assistant, Android has provided the perfect solution for a standard Personal Assistant, it listens to your to your request when online or offline and provides you with an answer when connection is available. However, an interesting and engaging Personal Assistant, Google Assistant is not- step forward please Siri. Siri the favored and pre-installed Personal Assistant on all Apple devices offers a fun and interactive persona and even tells jokes when asked! All this is done whilst still meeting all the standard requirements of a Personal Assistant, such as setting reminders or searching the web. With Siri the clear winner when compared with Google Assistant, Android users will be pleased to know Google Assistant isn’t the be all and end all when it comes to Personal Assistants for your Android. Fancy trying Cortana or Bixby?

 

Affordability: What suits you?

Choosing a Smartphone and a preferred operating system often depends on factors such as budget as well as personal preference. Apple focuses on high end, high quality devices. Whilst this ensures the end consumer is provided with a luxurious high quality end product, it also prices a significant number of consumers out of the market. Alternatively, choosing Android as an operating system opens up a market offering a wider range of devices from a variety of different manufacturers. This ensures Android phones are available across a varied assortment of price brackets. Not to be outdone by a competitor Android also offers equally matched high end devices alongside cheaper alternatives. Based on their ability to provide an operating system accessible to a wider target audience Android wins this one!

Apps: Google Play vs App Store

Like with most elements of comparison between two operating systems it really is a case of personal preference, a case that is no different when it comes to apps available on each system! When comparing suitable apps for both Android and iOS, it is largely an argument of quantity or quality. On the one hand, the Google Play Store the home of Android apps proudly boasts over 3.5million apps, thus providing a wide array of choice for the end user. On the other hand the iOS equivalent, the App store lists approximately 2 million apps. Whilst this is somewhat more restrictive than the offerings of their Android counterpart, Apple’s strict guidelines ensure that users are presented with a quality all round app.  Additionally with only a limited number of iPhone models, iOS avoids the issue of app fragmentation sometimes experienced on Android devices, due to the range of manufacturers and models. Therefore regarding apps, it really is a case of whether you prefer quality or quantity- after all everyone likes a fully functioning app, don’t they? iOS edges this one (sorry Android users!).

 

Security: Accessing your smartphone

Unlocking your Smartphone offers a certain degree of variance regardless of your device or operating system. The main difference between an iOS operating device to that of an Android is the variance of unlocking features. Whilst devices operating under the Android system are restricted to just a passcode or an arranged unlocking pattern- both easily forgotten for one reason or another! Consumers using iPhones operating under Android’s counterpart iOS, are treated to a wider range of options to unlock their device, with the mundane, generic passcode being complimented by the much sought after Apple touch ID. Touch ID allows users to unlock their fingerprint; further enhancing security- after all you can’t forget your own fingerprints can you?  Isn’t technology brilliant! With iOS seemingly streets ahead of Android at present, when it comes to security and unlocking your smartphone, it would be fair to say iOS beats Android to this title!

Latest Features of the operating system:

The latest updates of each operating system Android Oreo and iOS 11 were released in August and September 2017 respectively, with both offering their eagerly awaiting consumers a range of new and exclusive features. The key feature many Android enthusiasts will be boasting about is ‘Picture-in-Picture’ (and no it’s not just two pictures!). This unique feature incorporates the ability to shrink videos or directions into a reduced thumbnail- this enables you to carry out multiple tasks on your device whilst still paying monitoring your video or navigation. A smartphone that can multitask- who said Smartphones were the new humans? Whilst a key feature offered through iOS 11, is the ability to combine Apple Pay and iMessage- it really is as simple as sending a message, an exciting prospect that all the Apple fanatics can be heard talking about. With iOS 11, paying contacts has never been easier, after all who wants to venture all the way to the bank or open a mobile banking app just to transfer a measly $5? With both Android Oreo and iOS 11, offering effective time saving features as part of their latest updates- both parties really are catering for the increasingly busy schedules of the modern smartphone user. With that said, this one is a tie!