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Apple appointed responsible for childminding children playing on iOS devices

Posted on: February 27th, 2013 by Ashley No Comments


Apple are in the progress of paying out compensation to multiple iTunes account owners today due to a large iTunes bills.

Parents Credit cards have been nailed due to free games on Apple iPads and iPhones that allows you to download the game but then encourages you to buy goods in the games such as pods, ammo, vegetables and wood. A suit was filed with the District of California in April 2011 against Apple.

In the suit it cited that games had been designed to require the purchase of extras to allow you to proceed in the game quicker. Let’s face it no one likes to wait.

In the Settlement by apple proposed on Friday and waiting to be agreed on the 1st of March – Apple have approved that if people can prove that their children brought items though the games in a particular 45 day period then they will pay $5 in compensation and full refunds will be available if the requirements are covered.

The bill for the legal case has been stuck at apples door and they are having to pay it. Sums under $30 will be refunded to iTunes accounts not cash and a notification will be posted to all users that made a inapp purchase.

As we are all aware you require your AppleID and password to buy from iTunes but on iOS devices there is a period for 15 mins afterwards where you are not required to re-enter the password to purchase further items. Apple takes 30% of all sales though the app stores.

Since the suit was issued apple have started to put safe guards in and these are available but you do have to wonder what else is possible.

Is this a excuse for parents not being in control of there children or is this Apple being underhand and not letting people know before it to late.

Google maps makes a return

Posted on: December 17th, 2012 by Ashley No Comments


Recently reported in the technical news pages of the internet is the return of Google Maps to all IOS devices. After the controversy of apple replacing the Google Maps App on all iOS devices in the recent IOS 6 update.

Along with the return of the Google maps app to IOS devices comes the addition of functions that until now were only seen on Android devices. Features that are included are as follows:

  • Voice guided turn-by-turn directions, with estimated travel times.
  • Indoor panoramic images of buildings that have signed up to its Street View Business Photos service
  • 3D representations of the outlines of buildings that can be viewed from different angles
  • Vector-based graphics based on mathematical lines and points rather than pre-created bitmap graphics, making it quicker to zoom in and out of an area.

Nokia are still a threat to Google maps with their mapping and GPS app. The Nokia camp recently developed an app for iPhone devices to try and break into the ever grown market of iOS devices. By breaking in to the iOS device market allows them the chance to gather feedback and data from apps to allow them to make changes to improve services.

We at Tetrabyte Managed IT feel that the return of Google maps is great and a way to get apple to move faster with the upgrades they have to do.

So if you find yourself lost in the world of I.T call Tetrabyte Managed IT to help you find your way out of the wilderness

Windows 8, The Final Word

Posted on: August 16th, 2012 by Ashley No Comments


Windows 8 is heralded as the next operating system from Microsoft but with major changes to the user interface how will businesses take it.

First off, we need to look at the key difference in the operating system, as Microsoft look towards the future they see trends of people picking up tablet devices and mobile phones, not sitting at desktops and typing for hours. This has lead to the development of the new ‘Modern U.I.’ (Previously known as ‘Metro U.I.’), a radically different user interface than what our users know today. This ‘Modern U.I.’ replaces the Windows 7 Start menu with a full screen, bright and bold interface comprised of tiles rather than standard shortcut links. These tiles are able to show live information from sources such as weather and social media sites.

This unfortunately for businesses means that users have a large amount of scrolling to do to before they see that normal programs, Programs are arranged in an ad-hoc way rather than the standard alphabetical list users are used to. With customisation users can arrange the icons to display up to 24 tiles on the first screen, normally enough for most users. However in my experience, most users wont do this, Windows XP, Vista and 7 all had features available to “Pin to Start” since 2002 yet I still see a significant number of users relying on the ‘recently opened programs list’ and getting very confused when an application disappears.

As a side note, When looking at the New ‘Modern U.I.’ take a look back at Windows 3.1 Program manager (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Program_Manager) and let me know if you see anything familiar, Have we really moved forward?

Next we look at the ‘Modern U.I.’ Apps themselves, designed for a world of touch screen devices they seem to include larger bold interfaces, and few features the business workforce will find this slow and bulky from general workstations.

The one saving grace we have is the option to run these items in the normal Windows 7 style desktop environment, but it does mean just another couple of clicks every time we want to start a program. By default Windows 8 include no way to open internet explorer directly on the desktop, the user must first open the ‘modern U.I.’ App and then switch to the desktop mode using the spanner icon at the bottom of the screen.

As you may have noticed, the windows in the above preview do not have traditional close buttons and there is not task bar at the bottom of the screen to allow switching between apps, instead everything must be found by learning a series of gestures that are designed for a hand not a mouse and never seem to work first time you try them. To close a Modern UI app the user must grab an imaginary handle somewhere at the top of the windows and drag the app down to the bottom of the screen out the way. To switch between applications the user must move the mouse to the top left hand corner, until the task switching icon appears, once this has appeared the user needs to swipe the mouse down the side of the screen without moving too far from the edge. and if done correctly the user should see a task bar appear similar to below.

However you wont be able to switch directly into most programs, instead you must first load the desktop, then switch to the programs you want in the normal windows 7 methods by using the bottom task bar. These modification make the user experience feel like you are running two completely different operating systems, firstly the windows 7 that we are all familiar with, and secondly an operating system designed beautifully to work for touch screen tablets and phones but with no regard to the workforce who generally make up the largest proportion of an operating systems sales. While both interfaces work well for their purpose, Microsoft seems to have attempted to bolt the two together and have created something that totally fails to form a practical operating system for the corporate marketplace.

 

Android Phones Vulnerability – NFC Exploited

Posted on: July 27th, 2012 by admin No Comments


Charlie Miller, an experienced hacker has managed to hack into Android phones using nothing but a short range radio technology called ‘Near Field Communication’ (or NFC for short).

The short range technology can inject an Android phone with a particular set of code and direct it to websites, activate viruses and even steal data stored on the device.

NFC is being introduced in mobile phones in order to enter the credit card market – it has recently been announced that the iPhone 5 will contain an NFC chip, potentially making it possible to make transactions using the flagship phone.

Samsung Admits Software Upgrade Mistake

Posted on: July 26th, 2012 by admin No Comments


Samsung has admitted that the recent update to it’s Galaxy S3 was accidental – it was designed to remove the ability to search multiple places (web, apps, contacts etc) via a single interface. It was supposed to remove the feature only in the US, but it has done so on phones in the UK too.

This is in response to a court case initiated by Apple; they claim that the ‘all-in-one’ interface infringes a patent from Apple’s iOS system.

Samsung have stated that they will fix their mistake within the next few days.

O2 Major Network Outage

Posted on: July 13th, 2012 by admin No Comments


O2 has suffered a major network outage affecting millions of customers. Some customers were left without any mobile access for over 24-hours, whilst some people were able to access 2G services (phone calls, texting etc) by yesterday morning.

Whilst everyone knows problems occur it isn’t really good enough that one of the largest mobile operators in the UK can go down like this; businesses and consumers were both affected resulting in loss of business and communication for a vast number of people.

O2 haven’t yet released much information regarding the incident, however it is known that it wasn’t a specific area or range of mobile numbers affected.

We expect more information within the next few days.

Chinese Retailer Offering iPhone 5 Preorders

Posted on: July 11th, 2012 by admin No Comments


A Chinese retailer has started to allow preorders for the Apple iPhone 5, despite it not yet being officially announced by Apple.

The next generation of iPhone is suspected to have a larger screen than it’s predecessors and a revolutionary casing made from liquid metal.

Whilst Apple haven’t officially announced the iPhone 5, it is speculated to be available for retail purchase in September / October 2012.

Meanwhile, iOS 6, the next Operating System for Apple devices is being beta tested by third party developers – this has recently caused a problem whereby these developers have been selling access to the beta version of iOS 6 for as little as $10, undermining Apple’s attempts of secrecy.

iGoogle Closing Doors – November 1 2013

Posted on: July 4th, 2012 by admin No Comments


Google have announced that they’re closing down their flagship product – iGoogle.

iGoogle is a central homepage which many people use at their gateway to the Internet. It can synchronise iOS apps to it’s own products, such as E-Mail, Calendar, Notes, bookmarks etc, which can also be integrated with Mozilla FireFox.

Google have said that the service will be closed fully on 1st November, 2013, and the mobile version will be closed on 31st July, 2012.

There has been a lot of criticism regarding this move, with one user saying “How can they do this? I’ve had iGoogle as my homepage for years! Not happy!!!”

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