Thursday, February 28, 2013

Nokia Lumia 920 arrives with LTE for P26,990

Nokia Lumia 920 Philippines Price

Nokia’s flagship smartphone, the Lumia 920 is now officially available in the Philippines, the company announced.

The Lumia 920 boasts of a 4.-inch 720p HD screen, a 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor, 1GB of RAM, 8 Megapixels PureView camera with integrated Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) for a smooth video recording, and supports wireless charging.

Similar to other flagship smartphones this year, the Lumia 920 supports LTE too for fast mobile data access. It works with five LTE bands, two of which are being used by local carriers like Smart and Globe: 800MHz, 900MHz, 1800MHz, 2100MHz, and 2600MHz.

Nokia Lumia 920 Specifications and Features
4.5 inch Nokia PureMotion HD+ WXGA IPS LCD
Corning® Gorilla® Glass
Super Sensitive touch
Nokia ClearBlack with high brightness mode and Sunlight Readability Enhancements
8.7MP with Nokia PureView advanced optical imaging stabilization and Carl Zeiss optics
Full 1080p HD video capture at 30fps
32GB mass memory with 7GB free SkyDrive storage
2000mAh with integrated Qi wireless charging
GSM / HSPA+ / LTE (Compatible with Smart and Globe)
1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 MSM8960 processor
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n
Windows Phone 8 OS

Nokia says the Lumia 920 has a suggested retail price (SRP) of P26,990 although some retailers are selling it for as low as P25,750. Stocks are very limited, the company added.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Twitter announces an updated Windows Phone app

Twitter for Windows Phone

Twitter recently announced an update to their official app for Windows Phone. This is a good news since the previous versions of the app were slow and ugly.

The new version 2.0 update brings the app’s user interface in line with Twitter’s other mobile apps on iOS and Android. That includes a new navigation bar at the top which has the Home, Connect, Discover, and me tabs. Switching between tabs is just a swipe away, or you can just at the tabs themselves.

The Compose tweet and Search buttons are now always in place at the Application Bar on the bottom for easy access anywhere within the app. The app now also supports live tiles where you can pin accounts, lists, or searches on your Start screen. Multiple accounts functionality is still supported as well.

You can grab the new Twitter app for Windows Phone now at the Windows Phone Store

Source: Twitter

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

ASUS announces the 7-inch Fonepad tablet with 3G and call features

ASUS FonePad

If the Nexus 7 doesn’t fancy you, then here’s another 7-inch Android Jelly Bean tablet from ASUS. Announced yesterday at the MWC, the ASUS Fonepad offers more features at around the same price point.

The ASUS Fonepad builds on the foundation as well as addresses the shortcomings of the Nexus 7. It’s a tablet with the same 7-inch display with a 1280x800 HD resolution. It does seem though that ASUS took out Gorilla Glass on the Fonepad.

Nevertheless, they added one major feature some Nexus 7 users are looking for — a camera. That’s right, the Fonepad has a 3 Megapixels main camera, and not only that, it’s an autofocus one, something not common on tablets with a low price.

Instead of going the plastic for the body, ASUS gave the Fonepad an aluminum affair. That gives it an edge over the Nexus 7 in the build quality department. The distinction between the two continues with the internals, as it uses Intel’s Atom Z2420 processor clocked at 1.2GHz, partnered by PowerVR SGX540 GPU and 1GB of RAM.

The Fonepad will come in 8GB and 16GB variants unlike the Nexus 7, though the former will have the inclusion of a microSD card slot should users need more space. And last but not the least, the Fonepad comes with 3G by default and ASUS was kind enough to enable the call function and include an earpiece on the tablet. Hey, that’s why it’s named Fonepad after all.


ASUS Fonepad Specifications and Features
7-inch IPS LED-backlit display with 1280x800 resolution at 217ppi
Processor: 1.2GHz Intel Atom Z2420 processor
PowerVR SGX540 GPU
Memory & Storage: 1 GB RAM
8GB / 16GB internal memory, expandable up to 32GB using microSD card
Camera: 3 Megapixels autofocus camera
1.2 Megapixel front-facing camera
720p HD video recording
Networks: GSM / EDGE - 850/900/1800/1900MHz
3G/HSPA+ - 850/900/1900/2100MHz
Connectivity: Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
Bluetooth 3.0
Sensors: GPS / GLONASS
Ambient light sensor
Others: Noise-cancelling microphone
Micro-SIM card
Battery: 4,270mAh battery capacity
Size & Weight: 196.4 x 120.1 x 10.4mm, 340g
Operating System: Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean OS

The ASUS Fonepad will come around this March and will have a price tag of $249 or around P10,200 for the 8GB model. That sounds quite good overall, isn’t it?

Monday, February 25, 2013

BlackBerry 10 devices coming in March 6 in the Philippines

BlackBerry 10 Philippines Launch Release Date

Are you eagerly waiting to get one the new BlackBerry 10 devices? Guess what, it’s coming here in the Philippines sooner than expected. Our anonymous source has provided us what seems to be the invite image that you see above.

The invite confirms that the BlackBerry Z10, and possibly the Q10 too, will be launched in the country in March 6. No other details such as the exact pricing were provided.

Nokia announces the Lumia 720 and Lumia 520 for the budget-conscious

Nokia Lumia 720 Philippines

At the Mobile World Congress (MWC) today, Nokia announced the Nokia Lumia 720 and Lumia 520, two new Windows Phone 8 devices targeted for the mid and low end segments.

The Lumia 720 packs a modest set of hardware, including a 4.3-inch screen with 800x480 resolution, 1GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor, 8GB of internal storage, a 6.7 Megapixels camera with LED flash, and an improved f1.9 aperture for clear low light shots. It also supports wireless charging thru an optional snap-on case. It also comes with a 2,000mAh battery, which is big enough for a mid-range smartphone.

Nokia Lumia 720 Specifications and Features
4.3-inch IPS ClearBlack WVGA (800x480) display with Super Sensitive Touch
1 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core processor
6.7 Megapixels autofocus camera with Carl Zeiss optics and LED flash, f/1.9 aperture
1.3 Megapixel front-facing camera
HD 720p video recording at 30fps
8 mass memory, expandable by 64GB using microSD
GSM - 850/900/1800/1900
3G/HSPA+ - 850/900/1900/2100
Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
Bluetooth 3.0
2,000mAh battery capacity with wireless charging
Windows Phone 8 OS

The Lumia 720 is slated to roll out this Q1 2013 in Hong Kong, Singapore, and Vietnam and in Q2 in Europe, Asia, Africa, and India. It will have an estimated price of €249 or about P13,400.

Nokia Lumia 520 Philippines

Alongside the Lumia 720, Nokia also talked about the Lumia 520. It is their most affordable Windows Phone 8 device as of yet. It has a 4-inch screen also with 800x480 resolution, 1GHz dual-core processor, 8GB of internal storage, microSD card slot, and a 5 Megapixels autofocus camera. Nokia says that while the Lumia 520 is a low-end device, it still comes with their own digital camera lenses like the Cinemagraph.

Nokia Lumia 520 Specifications and Features
4-inch WVGA (800x480) display with Super Sensitive Touch
1 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core processor
5 Megapixels autofocus camera
HD 720p video recording at 30fps
8 mass memory, expandable by 64GB using microSD
GSM - 850/900/1800/1900
3G/HSPA+ - 900/2100
Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
Bluetooth 3.0
1,430mAh battery capacity
Windows Phone 8 OS

Roll-out of the Lumia 520 will begin in Q1 in Hong Kong and Vietnam, and in Q2 in markets like Europe, Asia, China, India, Latin America, and Africa. It will retail for €139 or about P7,500.

Smart Communications partners with Mozilla to launch Firefox OS smartphones

Mozilla Firefox OS Smart Communications

Smart Communications Inc., the country’s largest mobile carrier, announced a partnership with Mozilla to bring in affordable smartphones that run on their open-source Firefox OS.

This makes Smart the sole operator in the Philippines to bring Firefox OS smartphones. Firefox OS allows OEM and carrier customizations. That means Smart can add their own skins and apps on any smartphone to address the needs of their customers.

"Firefox OS brings the freedom and unbounded innovation of the open Web to mobile users everywhere," said Gary Kovacs, chief executive officer of Mozilla. Mozilla touts openness in the Firefox OS. Customers and users can do anything they want on their devices and assures they will be free from any restrictions.

"With the support of our vibrant community and dedicated partners, our goal is to level the playing field and usher in an explosion of content and services that will meet the diverse needs of the next two billion people online," he added.

Smart chief wireless advisor Orlando Vea said he is happy that Filipinos will be among the first to enjoy Firefox OS devices. "We're excited to see Firefox OS in the market because this will help bridge the digital divide. Its HTML5-based technology will make available affordable mobile devices with an open mobile ecosystem. This is aligned with our inclusive vision of putting mobile Internet in the hands of every customer," he said.

Mozilla also announced the other carriers that will carry Firefox OS smartphones. That include América Móvil, China Unicom, Deutsche Telekom, Etisalat, Hutchison, Three Group, KDDI, KT, MegaFon, Qtel, SingTel, Sprint, Telecom Italia Group, Telefónica, Telenor, Telstra, TMN and VimpelCom.

Manufacturers that already committed to make Firefox OS smartphones are LG, Alcatel, and ZTE, with Huawei to follow later in the year. Firefox OS smartphones will have Qualcomm Snapdragon processors.

Who knows, the next Netphone might run on Firefox OS?

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Samsung outs the GALAXY Note 8.0

Samsung GALAXY Note 8.0 Philippines

Samsung did not wait for MWC to officially start and announced their new tablet, the GALAXY Note 8.0.

The Samsung GALAXY Note 8.0 is pretty much the same as the GALAXY Note 10.1, except that the Note 8.0 has a smaller, well, 8-inch screen with the same 1280x800 resolution. It comes with a 1.6GHz Exynos 4412 quad-core processor and 2GB of RAM. There’s a 5 Megapixels autofocus camera sans the LED flash, as well as a 1.3 Megapixel front facing one.

The GALAXY Note 8.0 includes all the software stuff Samsung has developed and launched on their other devices as well, like the Multi-window, Air View, Pop-Up Note, and all other S Pen optimized features. It runs on Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean, though Samsung opted for the phone-like the user interface like the one found on Nexus 7.

Finally, you can also make calls with the Note 8.0. You see the earpiece above the screen? Yes?

Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 Specifications and Features
8-inch LCD screen display with WXGA (1280x800) screen resolution at 189ppi, Digitizer
5 Megapixels main autofocus camera
1.3 Megapixel front-facing camera
16/32 GB internal memory
2 GB of RAM
4,600mAh of battery capacity
1.6 GHz quad-core Exynos 4412 processor
Digital Compass
Bluetooth 4.0
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n 2.4 and 5 GHz
Wi-Fi Direct
Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean OS

Samsung says the GALAXY Note 8.0 will launch globally in Q2. No pricing has been mentioned although I suspect it will sell at around P22,990 to compete with the iPad mini.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 Philippines 3 Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 Philippines 4Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 Philippines 2 Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 Philippines 5Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 Philippines 6

Photo Credit: Samsung

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Nokia Lumia 720 and Lumia 520 revealed in leaked photos

Nokia Lumia 720 Leak Philippines

What you see above is the Nokia Lumia 720, a mid-range smartphone from Nokia, which was revealed for the first time in a series of leaked photos. Along with it is the Lumia 520, Nokia’s new low-end Windows Phone 8 device.

The Lumia 720 is expected to have a 4.3-inch display of yet unknown resolution, a 1GHz dual-core processor, 512MB of RAM, 8GB internal storage and a microSD card slot. On the other hand, the Lumia 520 is said to have a 1GHz dual-core processor and 512MB of RAM too, along with a smaller 4-inch display, 5 Megapixels camera, and 4GB internal storage. Both devices will run on Windows Phone 8.

Nokia Lumia 520 Leak Philippines

The Nokia Lumia 720 and Lumia 520 is expected to be announced tomorrow at MWC.

Source: evleaks (1), (2)
Via: The Verge

Friday, February 22, 2013

Hands-on with the HTC Butterfly

The HTC Butterfly, the global version of the Droid DNA from Verizon, was announced last December and this week, I finally got the chance to get a hands-on time with it. If you don’t remember, this is their first smartphone to have a full HD 1080p display.

HTC Butterfly Philippines

Thursday, February 21, 2013

LG announces new LTE phones, the Optimus F5 and Optimus F7

LG Optimus F5 and Optimus F7 Philippines

Four days before the Mobile World Congress (MWC), LG has formally announced their latest F Series smartphones, the LG Optimus F5 and Optimus F7. The two new devices from LG aims to bring 4G LTE to a mass audience.

The Optimus F5 seems like an upper mid-range smartphone with a very decent hardware. It sports a 4.3-inch IPS display with qHD (960x640)  resolution. A 1.2GHz dual-core processor accompanied by a 1GB of RAM runs under the hood. There’s a 5 Megapixels camera on the back for your picture-taking needs. To top it off, there’s a capacious 2,150mAh battery.

Moreover, the Optimus F7, it’s high-end sibling, comes with a 4.7-inch IPS display with HD resolution, a slightly faster 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 2GB of RAM, an 8 Megapixels camera, and a larger 2,540mAh battery. Both Optimus F5 and Optimus F7 come with 8GB of storage. They also run on Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean and supports 4G LTE.

LG Optimus F5 Specifications and Features
4.3-inch IPS display with qHD (960x540) resolution at 256ppi
1.2GHz dual-core processor
1GB of RAM
8GB internal storage, expandable using microSD up to 32GB
5 Megapixels auto-focus camera with LED flash
1.3 Megapixels front-facing camera
2,150mAh battery capacity
Size: 126.0 x 64.5 x 9.3mm
Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean OS

LG Optimus F7 Specifications and Features
4.7-inch IPS display with HD (1280x720) resolution at 312ppi
1.5GHz dual-core processor
2GB of RAM
8GB internal storage, expandable using microSD up to 32GB
8 Megapixels auto-focus camera with LED flash
1.3 Megapixels front-facing camera
2,540mAh battery capacity
Size: 131.7 x 68.2 x 9.6mm
Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean OS

LG will be presenting the Optimus F5 and Optimus F7 at the Mobile World Congress. It is expected to launch in Europe in the second-quarter of 2013 with the other markets to follow afterwards.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

HTC One officially announced, will be available globally beginning in March

HTC One M7 Philippines

In an event earlier today, HTC has finally announced their flagship Android smartphone for 2013, the HTC One.

The HTC One embodies a gorgeous design with diamond-cut precision edges and an all-aluminum unibody. They also decided to go the 4.7-inch route for the display size, despite the other manufacturers opting for 5-inch displays. It’s a full HD 1080p display which equates to 468ppi, which is like the sharpest display I’ve heard of in terms of pixel density.

HTC also introduced three new features which will come on the HTC One. They are HTC BlinkFeed, a stream of updates right on your homescreen, HTC Zoe, which is like Vine for your gallery app because it compiles photo stills and videos in an album (from what I understand as of now), and HTC BoomSound, which is composed of the front-facing stereo speakers with integrated amplifier.

They also dubbed of their new Ultrapixel creation. HTC developed a custom image sensor that allows more light to be taken in by using lesser but larger pixels. HTC says that up to 300% more light can be seen by the sensor that will help in low-light situations.

That should be it for now. I’ll share more opinions when I get the chance to try it.

HTC One Specifications and Features
4.7-inch display with full HD (1920x1080) resolution at 468ppi
1.7GHz Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 600 quad-core processor
2GB of RAM
32GB / 64GB internal storage
HTC Ultrapixel camera (4 Megapixels) with LED flash
- BSI sensor
- 2.0 μm pixel size
- 1/3' sensor size
- f2.0 aperture
- 28mm lens
- Optical Image Stabilization (OIS)
- HDR Video
- HTZ Zoe
- 2.1 Megapixels front-facing camera
2,300mAh battery capacity
Bluetooth 4.0
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/ac/b/g/n
GSM - 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
HSPA+ - 850/900/1900/2100 MHz
LTE - 1800/2600 MHz
Size: 137.4 x 68.2 x 9.3mm/4mm (max/min)
Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean OS

HTC states that the HTC One will be available starting in March at more than 85 countries and over 185 network operators globally. Sadly, the Philippines is not yet on that lengthy list. We’ll keep you posted on that.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Globe to offer DSL and Fiber connections at lower prices? P1,299 for 20Mbps?

Globe Fiber 100Mbps 4099

YugaTech got hold of a confidential document from Globe which details the new proposed DSL and Fiber pricing. An anonymous source has told them that Globe Telecom is finalizing deals and negotiations with local media companies to bundle Internet TV services too.

The new alleged pricing for the Tattoo@Home plans seems to have gotten a nose dive, with the entry-level 1Mbps plan only costing P299 per month. Some existing plans got huge bumps in the connection speed too. Take the Plan 1299 as an example, which now has speeds of up to 20Mbps from 2Mbps today.

The Internet and TV plans start at P2,099 per month for 40Mbps and costs as much as P4,099 for 100Mbps. it will supposedly have up to 70 channels.

Of course, take this with a grain of salt. The price adjustments are too significant for Globe to offer, though not exactly extra-ordinary. ISP’s in the other countries offer home internet connections for low monthly prices already. For instance, British Telecommunications (BT) in the UK charges £26/month (~P1,700) for its 76Mbps Infinity 2 service and £35/month (~P2,300) for it's 100Mbps Infinity service.

However, if this is true, Globe will definitely give PLDT a run for its money. At the present, Globe offers Fiber, through it's Tattoo Torque brand, for P4,299 for 10Mbps, P6,299 for 15Mbps, P14,999 for 50Mbps, and P19,999 for the 100Mbps plan. On the other hand, PLDT Fibr has monthly charges of P3,500 for 8Mbps, P5,800 for 20Mbps, P8,800 for 50Mbps, and P20,000 for 100Mbps.

UPDATE: These plans are not true, according to a representative from Globe.

Source: YugaTech

Monday, February 18, 2013

LG officially announces the Optimus G Pro

LG Optimus G Pro Philippines 4

LG today announced the Optimus G Pro, their first foray in the 1080p smartphone game and the successor of the Optimus G (which is set to arrive here in March).

The LG Optimus G Pro is equipped with a 5.5-inch IPS screen with full HD (that’s 1920x1080 at 440ppi) resolution. It is the first smartphone announced to have the new Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 quad-core processor, which is clocked at 1.7GHz.

Just like it’s predecessor, the Optimus G Pro has a 13 Megapixels main camera as well as a 2.1 Megapixels front-facing one. Battery-wise, there’s 3,140mAh of battery capacity that will power this device.

On its software front, the Optimus G Pro includes two new features, the Dual Recording which allows users to capture video using the front and rear cameras and the Virtual Reality (VR) Panorama which is basically their version of the Photosphere on stock Android. Aside from that, it also comes with upgraded QSlide, Live Zooming and QuickMemo features.

LG Optimus G Pro Specifications and Features
5.5-inch IPS display with full HD (1920x1080) resolution at 400ppi
1.7GHz Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 600 quad-core processor
2GB of RAM
32GB internal storage, expandable using microSD up to 64GB
13 Megapixels camera with LED flash
2.1 Megapixels front-facing camera
Dual Recording
Virtual Reality (VR) Panorama
3,140mAh battery capacity
Wireless Charging
User-removable battery
Bluetooth 4.0
Size: 150.2 x 76.1 x 9.4mm
Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean OS

LG says the Optimus G Pro will be launched this week in South Korea. No release dates has been announced for international markets.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

MacBook lineup gets huge price drops

MacBook 2013 Price Drop Beyond the Box

Apple announced last week the price drop across all MacBook models along with slightly updated processors.

Some models got a significant drop in retail price, such as the MacBook Air which got as much as P8,000 off of it’s previous price, the MacBook Pro which is now cheaper by up to P3,000. The MacBook Pro with Retina display received the biggest drop in price, with savings of as much as a whopping P18,000! You can check out the new full pricing matrix below.

MacBook Air
11″ MacBook Air / 1.7Ghz i5 / 4GB Ram / 64 GB Flash / Intel HD4000 – from 47,990 to P46,990
11″ MacBook Air / 1.7Ghz i5 / 4GB Ram / 128 GB Flash / Intel HD4000 – from 52,990 to P50,990
13″ MacBook Air / 1.8Ghz i5 / 4GB Ram / 128 GB Flash/ Intel HD4000 – from 57,990 to P55,990
13″ MacBook Air / 1.8Ghz i5 / 4GB Ram / 256 GB Flash / Intel HD4000 – from 72,990 to P64,990

MacBook Pro
13″ MacBook Pro / 2.5 Ghz dual core i5 / 4GB Ram / 500 GB / Intel HD4000 – from 57,990 to P55,990
13″ MacBook Pro / 2.9 Ghz dual core i7 / 8GB Ram / 750 GB / Intel HD4000 – from 72,990 to P69,990
15″ MacBook Pro / 2.3 Ghz quad core i7 / 4GB Ram / 500 GB / GeForce GT 650M 512MB – from 87,990 to P84,990

MacBook Pro with Retina Display
13″ MacBook Pro with Retina display / 2.5 Ghz dual core i5 / 8GB Ram / 128GB SSD / Intel HD4000 – from 82,990 to P69,990
13″ MacBook Pro with Retina display / 2.5 Ghz dual core i5 / 8GB Ram / 256GB SSD / Intel HD4000 – from 97,990 to P79,990
15″ MacBook Pro with Retina display / 2.3 Ghz quad core i7 / 8GB Ram / 256GB SSD / GeForce GT650M 1GB - from 107,990 to P102,990
15″ MacBook Pro with Retina display / 2.6 Ghz quad core i7 / 8GB Ram / 512GB SSD / GeForce GT650M 1GB – from 137,990 to P130,990

The MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and MacBook Pro with Retina display are available direct from Apple Online Store and Apple Resellers like Digital Hub and Beyond the Box.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Globe bares new MaxSurf data bundles

Globe MaxSurf

Globe today announced their new MaxSurf data bundles which seems to be really affordable.

MaxSurf looks like the one that will ultimately replace the the future. MaxSurf has three variants: the 700MB data pack for P100 for 3 days, the 1.2GB data pack for P170 for 5 days, and the 3.5GB data pack for P500 for 15 days. There seems to be no 1-day and 30-day options for MaxSurf, though.

However, it looks like Globe oversaw the 700MB data pack. For the same amount and validity, you can get 1GB of data if you’ll use their new GoSakto registration system. Nevertheless, these new offers looks good especially if you need an ample amount of data over a short period of time, let’s say when you’re on a vacation (inbound roamers, anyone?) and there’s no Wi-Fi in sight.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Globe’s new ‘Sakto’ offering lets you choose flexible call, text, and data bundles

Globe Senior Advisor for Consumer Business Peter Bithos at the Globe GoSakto Launch

If you’re using Globe, you probably know by now that they have recently launched their new offering, the GoSakto, which allows prepaid users to customize how they’d like their call, text, or data subscriptions to be.

GoSakto basically lets you decide what services you would like to avail and how much of them. You can choose from calls, texts, calls and texts, calls and data, texts and data, or all of the three. Aside from that, you can also get to choose the amount of minutes, SMS, or data (in mega or gigabytes) that you need and for how long you’d like to use them (1 day, 3 days, 7 days, or 30 days). Globe says there are more than 2,000 possible combinations on GoSakto.

Globe GoSakto

I tried creating a budget-friendly combination of calls, texts, and data which is as follows: 10 minutes to Globe/TM, 50 SMS to all networks, and 20MB of data for 1 day. That sounds like a lot for a so-called budget-friendly promo, right? But it turns out it is really budget-friendly at all, that bundle is just P23.00! Really neat.

Go ahead and try mixing your desired services using GoSakto. You can access it in three ways: by dialing *143#, by going to (an account is needed), or by using their Facebook app at which is the easiest.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Does cell signal suck at your home? Globe AirBoost is the solution to it

Globe AirBoost Femtocell

Cell signal at our home on every carrier is really bad, thanks to the 3-storey apartment beside our lot (I wonder why our subdivision let it be built right there!). At most, we often get zero to 2 signal bars inside (average of –107 dBm, which is considered beyond the weak level already) and around 2-3 outside.

It is really frustrating since it has so many effects, fast battery draining on devices, dropped and missed calls, and delayed text messages. So frustrating that it made me to ask someone working for a mobile network company on who do I get in touch with in regards to requesting a cell tower for our area, I mean, is it even the right thing to do? Anyway, that person has told me that requesting a cell tower is not as easy as abc (but I hope my request gets submitted) as the company needs to assess many factors, one of which I assume, is the market. So, requesting for a cell tower is not certainly a choice, but there is another choice. A femtocell. I was a little bit surprised by the answer, and after a bit of digging, I found these..

Globe AirBoost Femtocell (2)

The Globe AirBoost. Globe AirBoost is a femtocell, a device which acts like a small cell tower which can be placed inside homes or other places with weak cellular signals. It amplifies and repeats the signal available and requires and connects to your home broadband connection to transmit the data (SMS, calls, mobile data) to the network. It is quite common in other countries like the US and UK but I didn’t know until yesterday that Globe also offers a femtocell.

Here are some key facts about Globe AirBoost:
- Femtocell used is the NEC FP810
- Allows 8 simultaneous calls
- Uses a SIM card
- Energy consumption is <5w
- Works with GSM 900MHz (Band VIII) and 1800MHz (Band III)
- Works with 3G 850MHz (Band V), 1900MHz (Band II), and 2100MHz (Band I)
- Up to 14.4Mbps downlink and 5.76Mbps uplink (still depends on the broadband connection it hooks into, i.e. if your home broadband has a speed of 5Mbps, then the maximum speed the femtocell can get should be less than or equal to 5Mbps)

Globe AirBoost FemtocellThe Globe AirBoost in action. Note the 'Globe@AirBoost' carrier name.

Don’t get your hopes up though, the Globe AirBoost is only available for Platinum subscribers, that is, those who can pay P5,000 or P10,000 a month for their phone service.

What am I hoping is that Globe should offer the AirBoost to anyone who always experience weak cell signal at their place (which should be verified by e.g. site visit) even for a fee. For example, the AT&T offers the MicroCell for around $150, I even saw at their forums that some get it free if they are on an area with no coverage at all since it is cheaper than putting up a cell tower.

What do you think? Do you need Globe AirBoost? Are you willing to pay for it? How much?

Images Credit: PhilMug (Elbert Cuenca)

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Nokia Lumia 820 and Lumia 620 now available

Nokia Lumia 820 Philippines

The Nokia Lumia 820 and Lumia 920 were both originally set to be released here in the Philippines on January. That didn’t happen, and after some delays, Nokia announces the availability of the Lumia 820 and Lumia 620 in the country.

The Nokia Lumia 820 was announced last September 2012. It runs on a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 Plus processor with 1GB of RAM. On the front, there’s the 4.3-inch AMOLED ClearBlack screen with a WVGA (800x480) resolution as well as the VGA front-facing camera. On the other side is the 8 Megapixels auto-focus camera with LED flash is located. It has 8GB of storage and a microSD card slot which can accommodate another 64Gb of memory. It supports wireless charging to power up the 1,650mAh battery. Lastly, the Lumia 820 supports LTE, and yes, it will work with Smart and Globe.

The Nokia Lumia 820 is available starting today and will retail for P18,990. Colors available are black, white, and yellow.

Nokia Lumia 820 Specifications and Features
4.3-inch ClearBlack WVGA AMOLED display
1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 MSM8960 dual-core processor
8 Megapixels main camera with Carl Zeiss optics and LED flash
VGA front-facing camera
Full HD 1080p video recording at 30fps
8 mass memory, expandable by 64GB using microSD
GSM - 850/900/1800/1900
3G/DC-HSPA+ - 850/900/1900/2100
LTE - 800/900/1800/2100/2600 (compatible with Smart and Globe)
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n
Bluetooth 3.0
1,650mAh battery capacity with integrated Qi wireless charging
Windows Phone 8 OS

On the other hand, he Nokia Lumia 620 is the most affordable Windows Phone 8 device the company has ever released. It packs quite some serious specs for its price range. It has a 1GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 Plus processor and 512MB of RAM. The screen is a 3.8-inch LD with a WVGA (800x480) resolution. There’s a VGA front-facing camera on the front and a 5 Megapixels auto-focus camera with LED flash on the back. It also packs 8GB of storage and a microSD card slot.

Nokia Lumia 620 Specifications and Features
3.8-inch TFT WVGA 800x480 ClearBlack
1300 mAh
Qualcomm Snapdragon(TM) S4 processor with 1 GHz dual-core CPUs
5MP Autofocus, LED flash
Front-facing camera VGA
8GB mass memory (Micro SD support up to 64GB)
7GB free Microsoft SkyDrive storage
Windows Phone 8 OS

The Nokia Lumia 620 is now also available for P11,600. It comes in black, cyan, green, white, yellow, and magenta.

Nokia also says the Lumia 920 is still on track for the end-of-Q1 release.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Google starts rolling out Android 4.2.2 for Nexus devices

Google Android 4.2.2 Update Nexus

Google has started to roll out the new Android 4.2.2 update (build JDQ39) today for the Nexus devices which includes the GALAXY Nexus, Nexus 7, and Nexus 10.

There is no change log available at the moment aside from the usual ‘performance and stability’ improvements. AndroidPolice notes that the update supposedly fixes the Bluetooth A2DP streaming issues on some of the devices.

If you’re a GALAXY Nexus, Nexus 7, or Nexus 10 owner, you can check if the update is now available for your device by going to Settings > About phone > System updates. Strangely enough, Nexus 4 owners has not gotten the update yet until now, though it should be rolling out in paces in the next few days.

Source: AndroidPolice

Monday, February 11, 2013

PLDT unveils HeyU VoIP service


Telephone giant PLDT introduced a new kind of service for its customers called HeyU.

HeyU is a VoIP (voice-over-internet protocol) service which allows PLDT’s customers to link their telephone accounts on the new service and make calls from virtually anywhere. Once registered, users should just download the HeyU app (which is a rebranded ZoIPer app by Securax Ltd.) on the Google Play Store and enter their account details as provided by PLDT on registration. From there, users can now make unlimited calls to PLDT landline nationwide and HeyU users. They can also call US and Canadian landlines and mobiles at just P1.50 per minute as well as mobile phones on Smart, Talk&Text, and Sun Cellular at P5.00 per minute compared to the P14.00 per minute if you are to dial from your landline.

As of now, though, HeyU registration is only open for Telpad subscribers but PLDT has told me they are planning to make it available for DSL and landline customers as well. Hop over to PLDT’s website to learn more and register on HeyU.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

The 7-inch ASUS MeMO Pad lands for P6,995

ASUS MEMO Pad Price Philippines

Remember that 7-inch budget tablet from ASUS, the MeMO Pad, that was announced last month? Guess what, it has already reached the Philippine shores as promised.

The ASUS MeMO Pad is a small 7-inch tablet that is very budget-friendly. It has a 1024x600 screen resolution with a 170-degree viewing angle and 350-nit brightness.

Powering the MeMO Pad under the hood is the 1GHz VIA WM8950 processor and MALI 400 GPU. It has 16GB of storage which is expandable by a microSD card up to 32GB.

It has a 1 Megapixel front-facing camera for self-portraits and video calling which can capture 720p videos at 30 frames per second. Unfortunately, there's no camera at the back. But hey, who takes photos using their tablets? I do, sometimes.

The MeMO Pad runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and it comes pre-loaded with ASUS apps such as SuperNote Lite, BuddyBuzz, ASUS WebStorage, ASUS Studio and WebStorage Office.

ASUS MeMO Pad Specifications and Features
7-inch LED-backlit display with 1024x600 resolution (170 ppi)
1 Megapixel front-facing camera
16GB internal memory, expandable up to 32GB using microSD card
1GHz VIA WM8950 processor, Mali 400 GPU
Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
4,270mAh battery capacity
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS

The ASUS MeMO Pad is now available in the Philippines for P6,995. It comes in three colors, Sugar White, Titanium Grey, and Cherry Pink.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Twitter addz LOLcat as supportd language, kthxbai

Twitter LOLcat Language

Twitter, in a totally unexpected move, decided to add LOLcat as a supported language on their website. The changes becomes visible throughout the web interface, but doesn’t affect the actual tweets of course. The “HOME” becomes Hum, “EXPAND” is now Expand. Kthnx., and “VIEW SUMMARY” is now View Summary. Kthnxbye!.

The idea is not really new, after all. Facebook also has English (Pirate) and English (Upside Down) as one of its supported languages. You can try the LOLcat language by going to Settings and selecting LOLCATZ (BETA) in the languuj section. Have fun!

Source: Twitter

Friday, February 8, 2013

Nokia Asha 206 Dual SIM now out in stores

Nokia Asha 206 Philippines

If the good ol’ traditional alphanumeric keypad is still your thing (your grandma perhaps?), stick your eyes on this. Nokia today announced that the Nokia Asha 206 Dual SIM is now available at retail stores in the country.

The Nokia Asha 206 features a simple monoblock form-factor with the very familiar alphanumeric keypad for ease of use. It has a 2.4-inch screen where you can surf the web and access your Facebook or Twitter accounts among other things. It packs the Slam feature by Nokia too, wherein you can send files easily over Bluetooth in just a matter of clicks. Slam works with most Bluetooth-enabled devices.

10 free premium contents from the Nokia Store also comes included with every purchase of the Asha 206.

Nokia Asha 205 Dual SIM Specifications and Features
2.4-inch LCD screen with 320x320 resolution
1.3 Megapixel camera
GSM / EDGE - 900/1800
64Mb internal memory, expandable using microSD up to 32GB
Bluetooth 2.1
Nokia Slam
1,110 mAh battery capacity (28 days standby time)
10 free premium items available for download at Nokia Store
Nokia S40 OS

The Nokia 206 Dual SIM retails for P2,850 and is available in authorized dealers and Nokia Stores nationwide. It is available in cyan, magenta and yellow including the basic white and black.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

This Valentine’s, buy one and get 50% off on second item on selected brands at Beyond The Box


Valentine’s Day is fast approaching. If you still don’t have something to give your sweetheart something, aside from flowers, take a look at this.

Beyond The Box is having a promo where in you can buy something for you and another one for your loved one at 50% off. This sale applies to all Urbanears, Inboosta, and Speck items. This is perfect if your partner is a techie one! The promo will run from February 8 (tomorrow) until February 17, 2013. Click on the poster above to view the full details or visit their Facebook or Twitter accounts.

Beyond the Box is an Apple Premium Reseller that follows Apple's philosophy of 'Thinking Differently.' More than just a gadget store, it enables people to go beyond their boxes by helping them express themselves in creative ways.

They have retail stores at Newport Mall at Resorts World Manila, One Rockwell at Makati, and Lucky Chinatown Mall at Manila.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Instagram launches image feed for web browsers

Instagram on the web

Instagram earlier today unveiled the image feed for web browsers. Starting today, Instagram users can now sign in at on their web browsers on desktop or tablets. Once signed in,  users can view the images of the accounts they are following on the social networking site just like they would on the mobile apps. You can also like (and even double-click to like), or comment on the photos right from your desktop or tablet’s web browser, which should be a useful addition since not all users are on their mobile devices.

However, Instagram does not still offer the ability to upload images from the web browser because they say that it is about creating photos on the go.

Source: Instagram

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

128GB iPad goes on sale, will set you back P38,990 for Wi-Fi model and P44,990 for Cellular model

128GB iPad 4 Philippines

As expected, Apple made the just released 128GB 4th-generation iPad available today.

Apple announced the 4th-generation iPad with a larger 128GB storage capacity last week. The 128GB iPad is well suited for the people like professionals who stores, consumes, and deals with large files like music, photos, and videos.

The 128GB iPad is priced P38,990 for the Wi-Fi model and P44,990 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular model. It is now available at the Philippine Apple Online Store and should be also out at Apple Resellers shortly.

Source: Apple

Monday, February 4, 2013

iPhone 5, iPad mini jailbreak for iOS 6 now available

evasi0n iOS 6.1 Jailbreak

It’s already five months since the iPhone 5 and iOS 6 was released, and many of them has been waiting for the jailbreak tool for the new version of iOS. That time has finally come.

A new jailbreak tool, called evasi0n, developed by the team called evad3rs, was released yesterday. A jailbreak allows iOS device owners to do practically anything they want with their devices, like installing tweaks, custom themes, and apps that are not allowed by Apple in the App Store.

The evasi0n jailbreak tool is available for Mac, Windows, and Linux. It supports all devices running on iOS 6.0 to iOS 6.1 which is as follows: iPhone 5, iPhone 4S, iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, 4th-generation iPad, 3rd-generation iPad, iPad 2, 5th-generation iPod touch, and 4th-generation iPod touch.

As always, be sure to backup your device before doing the process.

Source: evasi0n

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Review: Noreve Leather Case for GALAXY Note 10.1

9 copy

Cases are now almost becoming a norm for mobile devices out there, especially since not all are built to resist wear and tear. These cases vary by design, functionality, and the price. In this review, we’ll feature the Noreve Tradition Leather Case for the Samsung GALAXY Note 10.1.

PART 1: Packaging

The case comes nicely presented in an elegant-looking packaging. It is evident on the premium box the case sits in as well as the actual cloth covering for the case itself. This is a really nice touch and is good for gifts and presents. My only suggestion is that they should offer an option for a simple packaging with a lesser price tag.

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PART 2: Design and Functionality

The external part of the case is hand-made from real leather, which has that addicting smell that’s immediately noticeable when you unbox it. It’s internal seems to be made of a synthetic leather with a soft-touch. It has openings for the ports and buttons on the top which means you don’t have to take it out just to access those.

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It also has a small cut-out for the S Pen which is really handy and easily accessible. Three ridges on the cover allows you to position the Note 10.1 at different angles which is useful when you’re watching a video, or using it on your lap for browsing the web or other functions.

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The case has a flap on the side which clips on the top of the Note 10.1 when you close it. It doesn’t scratch the side of the Note 10.1 as the flap is still made of real leather. A cut-out for the charging port on the bottom is also there, which lets you charge it without the need to have the case open. An opening is present on the back for the camera and LED flash, of course.

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The Verdict

The Noreve Tradition Leather Case delivers what it is expected to do. It protects the Note 10.1 from an scratches and offers extra functionality as well without the small compromises other cases have. It is also well made, and has a premium quality which I expect will last long on everyday use.

The good
Real leather
Premium quality
Offers access for ports and buttons
Comfortable landscape usage

The bad
Quite pricey, they should offer a simpler packaging option

The Noreve Tradition Leather Case for the Samsung GALAXY Note 10.1 is available at their website for $106.20, which might easily sound expensive for some. There are a variety of textures and colors that you can choose from.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Selected Samsung Mobile accessories now 50% off

Samsung Mobile Accessories 50% Discount

Samsung Mobile users, heads up! If you’re after some accessories for your smartphone (Galaxy S III, Galaxy Note II, etc.) or tablet (Galaxy Note 10.1, Galaxy Tab 2 7.0, etc.), then you should take a look at this.

Samsung US is offering a 50% discount on all Samsung Mobile accessories on their online store for a limited time. Everything that you can see here (smartphone accessories), here, and here (tablet accessories) that are currently in stock can be yours for half the price.

Some of the accessories worth mentioning include the 9,000 mAh Samsung Battery Pack which now goes for $50 (from $100) and the Galaxy Note II Protective Cover which is just $15 right now (from $30).

Of course, as stated above, this offer is only for US customers. However, fortunately, if you’re a GCash-AMEX user, you can just use that in order to buy those accessories at their discounted rates.