Category Archives: IOS Tablet

Apple unveils iPhone 6 Plus phablet alongside iPhone 6, Apple Watch

A couple hours ago, Apple concluded the most eventful product launch it’s held in years. The firm from Cupertino whipped the covers off its eagerly anticipated iPhone 6, the 4.7-inch replacement for its popular iPhone 5S smartphone; the iPhone 6 Plus, a new 5.5-inch phablet with the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and other phablets dead-center in its crosshairs; and the Apple Watch, the first new device category developed under Apple head honcho Tim Cook. Even if you’re not into Apple, you’ll want to scroll down and read more!

(Note that this is just an overview, so nothing is covered in any depth – look for us to write more in-depth articles in the coming days.)

Apple iPhone 6 Plus
image via arstechnica.net

A Plus-sized contender for the smartphone crown

Of course, this being a tablet and phablet site, this article is focused on the iPhone 6 Plus, so let’s get to it! The Plus is most definitely all about the screen, first and foremost; this one boasts a Retina HD display with a whopping 185 percent more pixels than the newly long-in-the-tooth iPhone 5S possesses. More specifically, it’s got a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels – which means that it has no less than 2 million pixels. No worries about impact on battery life, though – Apple says the 6 Plus gets 24 hrs talk time, 16 days standby time and up to 12 hours of net usage on LTE or WiFi.

Now let’s go to the rest of the Plus’ hardware. The Touch ID fingerprint sensor that debuted to such fanfare in the 5S also takes pride of place in the 6 Plus. (Apple’s trademark mute switch and volume buttons are also retained, of course, and the power switch has been relocated to the right side in a bid to make the phone easier to use with one hand.) Not only that, but the 6 Plus is also palpably thinner than the 5S – 7.1mm versus its predecessor’s not-super-thick 7.6 mm.

There’s a new front-facing iSight camera that has a new sensor, resulting in faster autofocus. The iPhone 6 Plus’ front camera features optical image stabilization – only digital stabilization is available on the 6. Lastly, the latest Apple processor, the A8, resides within the new iPhones – it’s 25 percent faster than the A7 the 5S uses. (The 6 and 6 Plus also benefit from the new M8 motion coprocessor, whose new barometer can measure relative elevation – it can now tell if, say, you’re climbing the stairs, a boon for those exercising.)

iOS 8 is the big story software-wise – the next generation of Apple’s mobile software – and in 6 Plus implementation it incorporates special features atop all other features to help boost usability, including ‘reachability’ to aid one-handed use (two taps on the home button slides the interface down, making it easier to reach) and a new landscape mode. It also comes with Apple Pay, which runs on the phones’ included NFC (at last!) to substitute for credit cards.

Price and availability

Beginning September 19, the iPhone 6 Plus will be available for sale. It can be had in Gold, Silver and Space Gray. It starts at $299 for the 16 GB version, goes up to $399 for the 64 GB version and maxes out at $499 for a new 128 GB version. (The 6 costs $100 less at each of the same storage sizes.) The iPhone 5s goes down to $99 and the iPhone 5c is now free with contract.

source [AppleInsider]

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Rumor: Touch ID-sporting iPad Air 2 to drop on September 9

Let’s take a tiny bit of a break from the firehose of tech news that is IFA 2014 to riff on what might transpire at the next big tech event, Apple’s September 9 launch of… whatever it might be launching (the famously reticent tech firm, as expected, hasn’t said a blessed word about what might happen then). This reticence has of course gotten the rumor mills churning. One of the rumors currently flying around has it that next generation of the iPad (iPad 6 or iPad Air 2, whatever you may choose to call it) Apple’s range topping big tablet, will drop then, and will come with the firm’s Touch ID fingerprint sensor too. But that’s not all – scroll down for more!

Not just about the iPhone?

Previous rumors have said that this upcoming Apple event was going to be all about the iPhone 6 and “6L”, or whatever the supposed upcoming phones will eventually be named, as well as the purported “iWatch” wearable. But now we have no less than Ming-Chi Kuo, the famed tech analyst from the KGI Securities firm, many of whose previous rumors haven’t been very far off the mark.

Kuo says in his investor note that the “iPad Air 2 will see significant spec upgrades” and that the new version will be revealed to the public on September 9. What spec upgrades might we see next week? Kuo repeats past rumors of Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint sensor, and says that new features may be debuting in the new tablet, namely the next version of Apple’s top of the line processor (the current one, the 64-bit A7, debuted in the iPhone 5S); an anti-reflective screen coating; and a new gold color option a la iPhone 5S.

Our source hastens to add that Kuo doesn’t indicate that there are any major design changes this time around; after all, the iPad Air itself represents the biggest change to the design of Apple’s popular tablet.

Let’s wait and see

Nothing’s been said about the price, but perhaps it’d be best to assume that it wouldn’t be changing too much.

Apple of course is neither confirming nor denying any of these iPad Air 2 rumors, but take heart: in a few days, we might just be able to find out for sure.

source [Ubergizmo]

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New photos of purported iPad Air 2 rear break cover

Apple’s September event is just around the corner, and according to all the rumors, the company is preparing to kick out all the chocks to make this a doozy of an event. While we’re supposed to finally view the iPhone 6 – the cornerstone of said event – and maybe Apple’s (very) long-in-gestation wearable, whatever it’ll be called, will also put in an appearance – we might also be treated to a new iPad Air and/or Mini. Or an iPad 6, if you will.

Which brings us to this post’s topic: French site Nowhereelse has posted a few intriguing pictures of what’s purported to be the rear cover of the upcoming iPad Air 2 – the second generation of Apple’s range-topping tablet. Won’t you scroll down to find out more?

“Subtle refinements”

This new pair of photos appears to confirm some of the rumors posted previously and/or covered in previous months. You can see what appears to be a second microphone beside the rear camera. Previous rumors and/or leaks have hinted the existence of this second microphone in addition to (or instead of) its old location beside the volume buttons.

Speaking of the volume buttons, the second of these two pictures also seems to reconfirm that the buttons themselves have also undergone a change of sorts – they’re now located within a “cavity” or some sort of recessed area.

iPad Air 2 (iPad 6) back cover iPad Air 2 (iPad 6) back cover

images via nowhereelse.fr

What’s not shown – of course, since these are pictures of the iPad Air 2’s rear end – the other, more substantial changes that the upcoming version of the Air is supposed to come with. It’s expected to be the next Apple device to debut with the Touch ID fingerprint scanner that first debuted on the iPhone 5S.

“Big” future plans

But these improvements to the iPad Air 2 could pale in comparison to what might be coming next, at least if the on-again, off-again rumors of an “iPad Pro” – a 12.9 inch version of the iPad, which are currently alive again.

While we’re not really sure if, given Apple’s secrecy, any – or all – of these rumors could be true, we’ll probably find out within the next few months. At least the looming September launch might confirm or deny some of them. Stay stuck!

source [Nowhere Else (French)]

via [Tablet News]

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Modbook can transform your MacBook Pro into a tablet

If you’re a big fan of Apple’s OS X but have been hankering to use it on a touchscreen device – ergo, a tablet – well, Apple doesn’t have anything in its current stable that can satisfy your itch. Cupertino’s said more than once that, to paraphrase the timeworn saying, OS X is OS X and iOS is iOS, and never the twain shall meet.

There IS hope, though – don’t fret. Apple might not be willing to give you and others what you crave, but there are other firms out there that will. Here’s one of them – Modbook, which will turn your MacBook Pro into a powerful tablet. The catch (yes, of course there’s a catch) is that this transformation will cost a pretty penny. Read on to learn more about Modbook and what it can do for you OS X-obsessed folks!

Modbook Pro X, an OS X tablet PC

The 411 on Modbook and its work

Modbook’s not new to the game; it’s actually been transforming MacBooks and other Apple laptops into tablets for some years now. Currently, they’re engaged in finding funding for their Modbook Pro X project, which is apparently this whole transformation bit writ large: it’ll give those lusting after an OS X tablet a way to either convert an existing 15.4-in MacBook Pro with Retina display into a tablet, or buy an actual pre-built system. Modbook is running a Kickstarter campaign to fund this project, through which it hopes to raise around $150,000.

And yes, as we mentioned, those of you who bite the bullet will have to pay a (very) pretty penny for the privilege of owning one of these units. For the duration of the crowdfunding campaign, a pre-built Modbook Pro X will cost at least $3,999. If you already have a MacBook Pro, you’ll have to pay $1,999 at least to have yours converted to a tablet. (Take note that after the crowdfunding campaign ends, you’ll need to pay $2,599 for conversion – and an eye-watering $4,599 for a pre-built system.)

If you can afford it…

Its (very) high price notwithstanding, the Modbook Pro X does seem quite interesting. What do you get after the conversion or if you’ve decided to buy a brand-new unit? A 15.4-inch tablet boasting a 2880 x 1800 pixel display, an active digitizer and digital pen with 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity, up to an Intel Core i7 Haswell processor (with Iris Pro graphics or NVIDIA GeForce GT750M graphics), a really interesting split keyboard at the back of the tablet that apparently will let you type without looking at the keys, and up to 32 GB RAM.

Plus, if you get the Ultimate model (yes, there is an even pricier variant), you get a keyboard and stand to allow you to use your new system just like a regular laptop or desktop. (And, in case you were wondering, Modbook does offer warranties all of its own!)

sources [Liliputing, Modbook Pro X Kickstarter campaign page]

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“Evidence” of Touch ID addition to updated iPads found in iOS 7.1

Apple’s range-topping iPhone 5S is currently the company’s only device featuring the Touch ID fingerprint scanner. Various analysts, including KGI Securities’ Ming-Chi Kuo, have said that this might not be the case for too much longer; earlier in April, Kuo predicted that Apple’s newest tablets, the iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina display, would both gain the feature in 2014.

Now, as reported by iDownloadBlog, French iOS developer UNiCORN – bp_unicorn on Twitter – may have found concrete evidence that this addition really is about to take place.  UNiCORN claims to have unearthed a reference to Apple’s iPad family in the Touch ID resources in the iOS code.

Buried in the code

The full tweet is visible at https://twitter.com/bp_unicorn/status/459410216107257856. But here’s a screenshot of the image UNiCORN attached to the tweet:

image from @bp_unicorn, Twitter

 Hold your horses?

However, as other experts have hastened to explain, such references to the iPad have already existed in past updates to iOS, and said feature has yet to see the light of day on any of the existing iPad models.

Moreover, as iDownloadBlog points out, iOS code often incorporates such “hooks” for features that seemingly never end up making it to the devices or models in question. Why, therefore, should we think that these particular snippets of code should be any different, and should thus be worthy of any attention?

A potential revenue booster

According to other experts, given Touch ID’s purported reason for existence – or at least one of them – it makes precious little sense for Apple NOT to incorporate Touch ID fingerprint sensors in its latest iPad models.

Over the years, nearly 1 billion have signed up for iTunes accounts with Apple – most of whom have registered their credit cards with Apple. A wide range of experts have said that the addition of Touch ID could be just what Apple needs to provide these users with a quick, easy and secure way to purchase goods and services online, and thus transform not just its smartphones, starting with the iPhone 5S, but also its tablets into portals through which these users can be converted into buyers.

Let’s wait and see how things turn out.

[Via iDownloadBlog]

[Source: bp_unicorn on Twitter]

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Rumor: Apple iPhone phablet to be produced in September 2014 – after iPhone 6

It’s that time of year again for Apple rumors – well, actually, the Apple buzz never seems to go out of season, does it?

The current crop of juicy rumors has to do with the upcoming replacement for the range-topping iPhone 5S, as well as what some analysts are saying will be Apple’s addition to the iPhone lineup, a larger-screened iPhone phablet. Said phone will supposedly sport a bigger 4.7-in display and a fresh new design – an even thinner housing than that of the iPhone 5S and a processor that’s even faster than that powering the 5S – and the iPhone phablet will have a similar design but will come with a larger 5.5-in screen.

Apple iPad Mini Tablet PC
So maybe this, but smaller?

Staggered release schedules?

The latest rumor, from Taiwanese Industrial and Commercial Times and relayed to us by Boy Genius Report and EMSOne, states that while the purported larger-screened iOS device is indeed in the works, its production is taking a back seat to that of the supposed iPhone 6. Apple is purportedly hard at work getting the iPhone 6 ready for release in the fall of 2014.

However, insist these and other sources, the Cupertino-based company won’t begin mass production of the iPhone phablet until sometime in September, and will thus only hit the market later in 2014 or maybe in early 2015.

A staggered launch schedule for these two purported devices – with the new iPhone slated to be released before the phablet – seems to make sense given that Apple certainly wouldn’t want any new phablet to steal its most popular product’s thunder.

Up on the bandwagon… ?

While Apple has been adamant about producing devices that are optimized for one-hand operation – the iPhone debuted with a 3.5-in display in 2007, and persisted with screens of that size for four years – the company has begun to appear to consider that it can ill afford to ignore the burgeoning market for larger screened devices, even though they are somewhat harder to operate than smaller ones. The iPhone 5, introduced in 2012, had a screen half an inch longer than any of its predecessors.

More recently, as revealed during the course of the ongoing Apple-Samsung trial, Apple may have admitted that “customers want what we don’t have” – phones with larger screens than what it currently offers, the only segment of the smartphone market that’s currently seeing any growth whatsoever – and thus may have no choice but to join practically every other manufacturer on the ‘phablet’ bandwagon.

[ via Boy Genius Report ]

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19 Most Memorable Tablets of 2013

The year’s almost up and we’re taking a look at 19 of the best tablets 2013 had to offer. It depends on who you ask, but many will tell you that 2013 is the year of the tablet. The best models of last year were upgraded to have sharper screens and zippier processors – a trend that is bound to continue in years to come. Of course, this hardware arms race benefits consumers, though we have to admit, the sheer numbers can be overwhelming at times. So we’ve sifted through the sea of slates to bring you the 25 most memorable tablets of 2013.

They’re incredible in their own little ways, be it hardware superiority, bargain basement price, or simply, bang for the buck. (They are in no particular order, because let’s face it, we’re not here to argue about which is better, etcetera, etcetera.) Continue reading 19 Most Memorable Tablets of 2013

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iPad Air: 5th Generation Apple Tablet PC

Every year, Apple treats us to better, slimmer, and faster versions of its established product lines, and well, this year’s iPad is no different. Meet the iPad Air, the Apple’s 5th generation slate. What can you expect from this year’s model? Well, a whole lot.

Apple iPad Air tablet PC

iPad Air: It’s not just a name change

Apple’s new tablet, the one that rumors had referred to as the iPad 5, features the same chip found in the new mini and the iPhone 5S, the 64-bit Apple A7. The said dual-core CPU clocks in at 1.4 GHz. The 9.7 inch display utilizes IGZO technology and features a 2048 x 1536 pixel resolution at 326 pixels per inch. Other features include 1 GB of RAM, a 1.2 MP front-facing camera (720p HD) and 5 MP rear-facing camera, and Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity. It runs with iOS 7.0.4 and is available four storage options, 16, 32, 64, and 128 GB.

Aesthetics-wise, the iPad Air measures in at 240 x 169.5 x 7.5 mm (9.4 x 6.67 x 0.3 in) and weighs in at 469 g (1.034 lb) for the Wi-Fi only version and 478 g (1.054 lb) for the Wi-Fi + Cellular versions. It’s basically lives up to the name – it’s thinner and lighter than the iPad 4 (iPad with Retina display). It even has a thinner bezel.

Additional Notes

Like the new mini, the iPad Air packs MIMO Wi-Fi, giving it better wireless capabilities. What’s more, the component is also easy on the battery use, giving the device longer up time on one charge. According to reports, the tablet should last about 10 hours of continuous use – which isn’t bad considering this is a full sized tablet. What’s the other reason why using the MIMO Wi-Fi is so much better? Less power needs meant that Apple could put in a smaller battery and still end up with the same battery life. The smaller battery made the device weigh less.

Anyway, the Air starts at US $499 (16 GB Wi-Fi only model). If you want an iPad but don’t want to shell out that much money, the previous gen is still available at a much lower price point, US $399.

Well, if you need some comparable devices, you may want to wait for the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014.

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Apple iPad mini with Retina display – Better, Faster, Sharper

Last year when Apple first released its competitor in the “small tablet” division of the tablet PC wars, the iPad mini debuted to mostly positive reviews. It was, however, not without its shortcomings. Tech review sites and consumers alike pointed out that the slate would have been so much better with a Retina display. Well. Apple is rectifying that with the second generation release. No surprise there. Other improvements have been done to it though, and they are upgrades Apple fans are bound to like.

Apple iPad mini with Retina display

Apple iPad mini: Upgrades

First and foremost, let’s talk about that Retina display. The new iPad mini has a 7.9 inch LED IPS screen with a super sharp 2048 x 1536 pixel resolution. That’s 326 pixels per inch – which is slightly better than the Google Nexus 7’s 1920 x 1200, 323 ppi. The tablet PC is powered by a 64-bit Apple A7 CPU, and runs on iOS 7.0.4. Other features include a 1.2 MP camera up front for FaceTime (720p HD video), and 5 MP shooter at the rear (1080p video), and the usual Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity.

According to Apple, the new mini can last up to 10 hours – so even with the Retina display, it still has the same nearly all-day battery life as its predecessor. Aesthetics-wise, the second generation model still looks generally the same as the first gen model, though the former is (very) slightly thicker and heavier than the latter.

Additional Notes

The iPad mini with Retina display is better than the original, that’s for sure. It’s available in four storage options and starts at US $399. As is Apple’s pricing convention, the first mini is still available but with its prices slashed down to US $299.

What do you think? The iPad mini is still more expensive than your typical Android tablet PC, but we’re sure it won’t dampen sales especially now that the mini is more like a miniature iPad Air than a relatively cheaper alternative to a full-sized iPad.

If you’re planning to get one but want to check out the other players out there, then you may want to read up on the Google Nexus 7 (2013), the Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0, and the Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 8.9, among other 7- to 9-inch slates.

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Tablet PC Comparison: iPad Mini vs. Nexus 7

We know you were thinking it as soon as Google released its second gen entry (and we have to admit, we were thinking it too): Who would win the iPad Mini vs. Nexus 7 comparison? These two have been bitter rivals from the get-go, and of course, the question on everyone’s mind is which one comes out on top?

Apple iPad Mini Tablet PC   Google new Nexus 7 Tablet PC (2013)

Faceoff: iPad Mini vs. Nexus 7

The Apple iPad Mini is just a couple of months from turning one year old, but it’s still one of the better selling tablets out there. We may be seeing a refresh soon, but so far, we haven’t heard anything official – as is usual for Apple. The Google Nexus 7, on the hand, is still manufactured by Asus and offers so much in terms of upgrades on every possible front.

iPad Mini

Nexus 7 2013

Screen Size 7.9 inches, LED-backlit IPS 7.02 inches, IPS LCD
Resolution 1024 x 768 pixels (163 ppi) 1920 x 1200 (323 ppi)
Processor 1 GHz Apple A5 2nd Generation Cortex-A9 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro
Cores 2 4
RAM 512 MB DDR2 2 GB
Hard Drive 16, 32, 64 GB 16 GB or 32 GB
Graphics PowerVR SGX543MP2 Adreno 320
Camera/s 1.2 MP front-facing
5 MP rear camera
1.2 MP front-facing
5 MP rear camera
Weight 312 g (0.69 lbs) 290 g (0.64 lbs)
Dimensions 200×134.7×7.2 mm 114x200x8.65
OS iOS 6.0 Android 4.3 Jelly Bean
Pricing 16 GB WiFi-only $329
32 GB WiFi-only $429
64 GB WiFi-only $549
16 GB WiFi-only $229
32 GB WiFi-only $269
32 GB LTE model $349
Release 2012, November 2013, July

Who wins this tablet comparison?

We’ll say this: That second generation iPad Mini should get here quick. As it stands, the current gen iPad Mini vs. Nexus 7 seems hardly fair. The Mini’s Achilles’ heel – that is, its lack of Retina display – sticks out like a sore thumb beside the 7’s brand spanking new HD display, and it seems to exist on a whole other price level. We’re expecting more of a fight from the iPad Mini 2, whenever that happens to hit the shelves. The 7, on the other hand, hit the ground running, with its improved display, better CPU, and larger RAM.

At least for now though, the new Nexus 7 wins this round. Once the new Mini hits, we’ll be here to watch the bout and tally the scorecards, so stay tuned.

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