Sunday, February 1, 2015

Moto G 2014 2nd Gen: a quick review

For the price (£130 or so at Tescos) a brilliant phone. While the camera's just 8 mp, the rest of the specs are great, and for the first time ever I'm able to get through a day and still have battery left for the next! Despite the beautiful large screen the phone isn't 'big' and cumbersome.

Given it's close association with Google, it's no surprise the phone has the closest integration I've seen with the Android operating system. There's very little bloatware, and Google Now is built right into the home screen. The phone runs KitKat (Android 4.4) but an OTA upgrade to Lolliop is rumoured to be due in February 2015.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

My Tracks

I don't remember why I tried & rejected My Tracks some time ago, but I'm now a huge fan. Simple yet powerful, it's an ideal GPS route tracking app, it has the added advantage of automatically saving my tracks to Google Drive. I love the Google Earth integration, but the voice telling me how far I've gone during a ride still startles me!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Monitoring your websites on your Android

Anyone who manages mission-critical (or even vaguely important) websites knows the need to be on top of downtime awareness. On your PC you have lots of choices: springs to mind, especially with their Personal account letting you monitor up to 10 sites for free.

But the best I've found for the Android is the free Overlook Wiz. It's widget (or several, if you monitor many sites) that sits on your home screen, and alerts you when the site is unreachable.

You can set the interval at which it checks the server, and you specify a specific URL to check. Note that a HTTP check looks for a specific word on a page, so be careful what word you specify.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

60 great wallpapers for your Android

Once in a while I like to change my phone's wallpaper. Just came across this site, which has some stunning photos that would grace any phone!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Sharing Links

I've been looking for the Holy Grail for a while, and I think I've found it. My requirement is to be able to send a link from my smartphone browsing to my desktop - for example I may, while browsing at home on my phone, find a page that I want to explore further on my desktop at the office. I'd tried a few Bookmark sharing apps but wasn't happy with them. Nor did I want a 'read it later' kind of app.

But my wishes were granted when I found Phone2Chrome. The app, with a companion Chrome extension, does the job perfectly. It works by tapping into your DropBox account, storing the things to be shared there. Use it to send a link a link from your phone, and when you open your browser you'll get a notification.

It's a great little app/extension, and having used it for a while now it's good to see how it's evolving nicely - for example, you can view a history of links you've shared both in your desktop browser and on your phone. And best of all, it's free!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Android Market problems

I had a strange problem crop-up when using the Market - updates or downloads would begin but never finish, just show a 'Starting download...' message. Furthermore, when I tried to uninstall, a similar thing would happen: the 'Uninstalling...' message would show but never complete. Googling gives many possible solutions, but the one I found to work was to upgrade to the latest Play app.