Saturday, 25 November 2017

Track your kids or pets with the Samsung Connect Tag

While trackers are far and about, all of them make use of Bluetooth to stay connected to your phone. The problem with this implementation is that the range of Bluetooth is a couple of meters at the max. So if your kid or belongings get lost when you are out of range, you are left with no way to locate them.

Enter the Samsung Connect Tag. Instead of using Bluetooth, it makes use of narrowband network technology (NB-IoT). Narrowband networks connect Internet of Things devices through cellular communication bands. Such networks are usually meant for devices that use small amounts of data and power and provides the capability to securely connect to the Internet for location services.

Information on the Samsung Connect Tag

The tracker can provide location data, both inside and outside by taking advantage of GPS. Cell ID and Wi-Fi positioning are available too. Furthermore, it features an accelerometer and has a three shaded LED. The company says the tracker can work for seven days before needing to be recharged and will only work with Android device.

The design of the Samsung Connect Tag allows it to be attached on to a kid’s bag, pet’s collar or something like a purse. The tag comes with a handy feature too. Called the geofence feature, it alerts you when the object or person is moving beyond the limits set. There is also a function to request the tag"s location at any given time through your smartphone which can be helpful if you’ve parked in a massive parking lot.

The Samsung Connect Tag is tiny and is only 1.1 cm in thickness and is 4.21 cm wide. Moreover, it is resistant towards water and dust. Samsung has still not released any information regarding pricing yet. It will first be sold in the company’s home country, S. Korea before being sold elsewhere in the globe.


Aston Martin unveils a new Aston Martin Vantage

Last Tuesday, the British automaker took the covers off its latest car; the Aston Martin Vantage. It is intended to replace the Aston Martin DB11, which released in 2016 and went on to be the best selling car in the company’s history.

Information on the Aston Martin Vantage

It is powered by a 503hp 4.0L twin-turbo V8 and is the cheapest version of the model. The Aston Martin makes use of the company’s bonded aluminium architecture.

The vehicle is a more compact vehicle. It is about eleven inches shorter than the DB11 and takes up a smaller footprint than even a Porche 911. It"s significantly lighter, too; the company says it has a dry weight of 3,373lbs (1,530kg), and the sprint to 60mph should take just 3.6 seconds.

The four-litre AMG twin-turbo V8 engine is courtesy of a technology partnership with Mercedes-Benz. It is the same engine that is offered on the Aston Martin DB11 as an added option. It provides 510 ps (503 hp/375 kW) and 685 Nm (505 lb-ft) of torque. Moreover, it is coupled to ZF"s very good eight-speed automatic gearbox. The company says there will be a manual option in the future too.

Aston Martin described the design on the vehicle as "an athletic, predatory stance". However, even though, the engine and design language is very similar to the older DB11, Aston Martin says the majority of the components, 70 % to be exact, in the vehicle are new.

The interior looks especially stunning and seems like something out of a Ferrari or Lamborghini. There is an eight inch screen in the middle for navigating and entertainment purposes. Of course, it can be customized to how you want The company says that its latest car has its most advanced up-to-date adaptive damping suspension and the vehicle dynamics are tuned by Matt Becker.

Fossil Q Activist Review

The Fossil Q Activist is the latest in the line of the famed company’s so-called "hybrid" watch category. While many tech companies and watchmakers have attempted to create something like this. Fossil seems to have perfected the design

Fossil Q Activist Design

The design of the Fossil Q Activist does not feel totally premium but it does not feel totally cheap either. The model comes with more than forty styles that are made for a wide range of people. Each watch comes with a band, but they"re all standard sizes with standard quick-release pins, so it"s easy to replace them with something you like better.

Fossil Q Activist

There are three buttons on the watch that can be assigned to multiple tasks. These can be set to show the date, your steps, different time zones, music controls, and a few other things.

What does the Fossil Q Activist do?

The smartwatch can track steps, monitor your sleep, allows you to control your music, see your commute time, and, of course, get your notifications. For notifications, you can set people or apps to any of the 12 numbers around the dial. So while you won"t get the contents of a Facebook Messenger ping, you"ll at least know that the thing vibrating is Facebook Messenger and not, say, a tweet.

Fitness tracking works well, although it’s a bit basic. It can track your sleep and count the number of steps you take. You will not find a heart sensor and there is no way to set up an exercise session. This fitness data can be merged with many other apps.

There is an app for the smartwatch and it is available for both Android and iOS. Another amazing feature is the battery life. The Fossil Q Activist can run for about six months on one charge.

Uber hid a data breach for a year and paid hackers to delete the stolen data

Uber has had somewhat of a rough year and is under a lot of negative press at the moment. The latest news out of the ride-sharing service looks like it will add coal to the fire. The company has now revealed that the security of their service was breached roughly a year ago and that the hackers were paid around one hundred thousand US Dollars to delete the information they had acquired.

When did this hack at Uber happen?

The hack happened during the month of October in 2016. Two hackers are thought to have gained access to an archive of rider and driver information. This data was present in the Amazon Web Services servers that maintain computing tasks for the ride-sharing service. They got their hands on the login information via a private GitHub coding site.

These individuals then contacted Uber. The announced that they possessed sensitive information on riders as well as drivers. The information they had included email addresses, phone numbers and more importantly, the license numbers of six hundred thousand drivers employed at Uber. On the plus side, information like Social Security numbers and credit card details were withheld.

When such breaches occur, companies are mandated to inform people and government agencies. However, Uber took another route. They decided to pay the hackers to delete the information and kept everything under the sheets.

The current CEO believes the information was never used and had the following to say.

At the time of the incident, we took immediate steps to secure the data and shut down further unauthorized access by the individuals. We also implemented security measures to restrict access to and strengthen controls on our cloud-based storage accounts.

The company also recruited former National Security Agency general counsel Matt Olsen to further strengthen its cybersecurity division to present a reoccurrence. While the effects of it have now been neutralized, the company faces new problems.

A lawsuit was filed in federal court in Los Angeles against Uber for its failure to “implement and maintain reasonable security procedures and practices appropriate to the nature and scope of the information compromised in the data breach.”

Fitbit Flyer review

While all eyes were on the Fitbit Iconic, the company quietly released the Fitbit Flyer; Fitbit’s first audio product. It is a headphone engineered towards those who work out.

Build and design of the Fitbit Flyer

The earbuds are mostly manufactured using plastic and silicone but aerospace grade aluminium accents are used to add a premium touch to the device. Safe to say, the company took the design process very seriously. These earbuds are pretty comfortable to use too. The cable connecting the earbuds is flat and rubbery, and it is hardly noticeable on your neck. They are sweat proof, however, they do not have water resistance.

Battery life of the Fitbit Flyer

According to the company, these earbuds can stay powered on for around six hours. According to our tests done, the claim is pretty close as the earbuds last a little over 5 hours. When you do need to charge them, it will only take an hour or two to charge from empty to full. Fitbit also says you’ll get one hour of playback after a 15-minute charge.

Sound quality of the Fitbit Flyer

The headphones contain a Power Boost mode that greatly increases the bass and EQ while other sound profiles are included too. This product from Fitbit accurately plays lows and the bass is well amplified. The mids are decent too but they tend to get distorted at loud volumes while the highs are pretty much perfect. The Flyer comes with Passive Noise Isolation to help reduce background noise, and I think it does a great job.

The Fitbit Flyer’s sell for $130. As I mentioned above, these headphones are made for those who exercise but they do not have the ability to track your workout and activities like some other headphones like the Jabra Sport Coach.

Friday, 24 November 2017

Lenovo Yoga 920 review

Lenovo’s Yoga laptops are well known in the world of convertible laptops. Their latest offering, the Lenovo Yoga 920 succeeds their previous Yoga 910. Long before 2 in 1 laptop made the headlines, it was this line of devices of Lenovo that pioneered these machines. It comes with better battery life and more ports to name a few.

Quick information on the Lenovo Yoga 920

Putting the first things aside, this is a premium laptop. Priced at $1199, it is powered by an 8th gen Core i5 processor. There is a Full HD display that gives you clear and crisp pictures while there is 8 gigs of RAM to ensure smooth performance. A 256 GB SSD is included for storage. Of course, there are further add-ons for this machine. You can include a 4K display, 16GB of RAM, and a 1TB SSD, which takes the grand total all the way to $1,999.

Design of the Lenovo Yoga 920

The iconic hinge design makes a return. Robust and unique, it also hides the computer’s ventilation system. The entire machine is 0.55 inches in thickness and features a smooth finish that looks elegant. However, this makes it quite a fingerprint magnet. The metal design also makes the Lenovo device heavy at three pounds.

The keyboard is great to use, though the travel is a bit shallow. It is not much of a deal and one can easily get the hang of it after a few days of use. A pen is included with the laptop.

Those who use Cortana will be glad to know that the machine has far-field microphones with a range of about 20 feet. On the sound of audio, you can find twin JBL speakers.

There are four ports on the laptop. These are the USB 3.0, two Thunderbolt 3 / USB-C ports and the headphone port. The battery lasts for about twelve hours while the Yoga 920 has a fingerprint sensor too.

Google Pixel Buds review

The Google Pixel Buds are the first headphones manufactured by Google. They come with a number of enticing features that we will take a look at below.

The Google Pixel Buds Design

These earbuds come in a clamshell enclosure that feels a bit like the Google Home Mini. They are easy to remove but needs a specific procedure to be put back in. You will probably have to refer to the manual to get it right.

As soon as the Pixel Buds are removed from the case, they start searching for a device to connect. Similar to the AirPods, they do not have an ON/OFF button. The earbuds rest gently in the outer ear and don’t slide into your ear canal, which allows noise from the outside world to slip into the mix of your music.

These earbuds operate via touch and voice control but only the right earbud can do this. To pause, play or to pick up a call, a tap once on the plastic exterior. A forward swipe will raise the volume and the reverse motion does the opposite. If you want to check in on your notifications double tap exterior.


The Pixel Buds perform quite well and the quality at the full most volume is quite impressive. Google says these earbuds can last for about five hours and this was true during the tests done. The case can charge the earbuds for another 24 hours so rest assured you are not going to have dead earbuds at any point.

The coolest feature is the integration with Google Translate. The user speaks in his or her native language into headphones and the Translate app automatically spits it out of the Pixel phone’s speaker in the desired language. On the opposite side, it can decode another language spoken into the phone and translate them to the user’s language through the Pixel Buds.