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How to Keep Your Cellphone Safe

Posted by Admin on Feb 7, 2014 in Mobiles

It’s easy to take our phones for granted these days because everyone has one, but the fact is that we put a lot more of our lives into those phones than we realize. Everything from important family contacts, credit card information, and vital business data is kept on our phones. While phones are necessary for most of us now, they can also be used against us if we don’t know how to keep them safe.

Phone

It’s important that everyone knows how to protect their phones from every threat that is out there so that all of the information that is kept on them can stay safe from predators. It’s not easy to do so, however, because there is so much data to protect and so many new hackers and hack apps out there these days.

Smartphone Threats

The reason why so many phones come under threat of attack is because there is a GPS chip in just about any phone that is bought. This means that applications can track your movements, your spending habits, and anything else you do on the phone and use it against you.

You don’t need to have a GPS chip in your phone to come under threat, though. If you can download an application onto your phone, you open yourself up to the possibility of getting malware or a virus on your phone. These threats can completely erase your phone’s hard frisk and can send information without you even knowing it.

The way to avoid all of these issues is to always know what your phone is connected to and never download any applications that you don’t know are safe. It’s hard to know every app that is safe, but you can usually spend a little bit of time researching and figure out if the app you’re interested in does any sort of tracking. If you see that it does, make sure that you have the option to turn it off. No app is allowed to track anything you do without you first giving it permission to do so.

Mobile Trackers

As mentioned above, GPS trackers can be used as a threat against you, but you can also use this technology to your advantage to keep your phone safe. There are a number of applications out there right now that allow you to be able to track your phone if you lost it, if it’s stolen, or if you need to know where your children are.

The most common use of this technology is to have the ability to easily find a lost phone. If you happened to leave it at a restaurant or at the movies, you can quickly go to a computer and figure out exactly where it is before it’s stolen.

If you have children, phone tracking can be a fantastic way to know where your child is at all times. While this would be great in emergencies, the more common use of these apps is to help parents locate their children so they know they are where they’re supposed to be throughout the day.

You may think that this type of tacking is invasive, but the fact is that you always have the option to turn it off if you don’t want to use it. You just need to make sure that any app that you download doesn’t have tracking on by default and you should be fine.

Creating Strong Passwords

One of the easiest ways for hackers to get your information is to figure out your passwords by just going through your public information and coming up with common letters or numbers. This is why it is vitally important to always use passwords that no one can figure out.

Many people don’t want to take the time to come up with long passwords because they’re afraid they will forget them. Well, it’s worth remembering a long, strong password than to lose your information to hackers, isn’t it?

Absolutely never use birth dates, social security numbers, easy number sequences, or names as your password. These are still the most common passwords around and it is extremely easy for a hacker to figure them out through the use of common sense and password detectors.

The last, and definitely not least, important tip that I can give you about passwords is to never use the same password on multiple sites. Yes, it can be a bit of a headache to try to remember all of your passwords, but there are now great programs out there that will store that information for you.

Your phone will be much safer if every password you have is something different and has multiple letters, numbers, and other characters in them.

To Sum Up…

As you can see, there are many different ways that your phone can come under threat, but there are also ways to combat each one. Following all of the tips above will give you a much better chance of keeping your phone safe from all threats.

Image via Flickr by IntelFreePress

 
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Carrier IQ: Eye Spy on You

Posted by Admin on Nov 9, 2013 in Software

With the public outcry for privacy policies, and ‘The Rootkit of All Evils’ dubbed software out there, are you next in line to be spied upon as enemy of the state? It has been indicated that that mobile phones are the third eye monitoring our movements, the activities you perform on them are logged, and which are obediently relay back to their masters, the service providers.

The Rootkit of All Evil

That is what the software has been nicknamed, owing to its secretive nature and for its dominance over your cell phone. And the spy glasscompany responsible for this innovative software is none other than Carrier IQ.

In the face of things though, this software was designed to monitor and detect errors that may occur on your phones, but it out-stretched its utilities and got capable of recording the keystrokes you perform, and logging it, thus your activities gets recorded. Your global positioning can also be monitored.

The person to open this Pandora box was a developer, Trevor Eckhart, to whom Carrier counter reacted by threatening him against legal actions, if he did not retract his claim that their software was a ‘rootkit’.

What is Rootkit

Well, it is of course a software, but one which is installed maliciously deep down in your device core system, and it has full control on your system.

Carrier IQ the Root Cause

Since, the revelations about the company, Carrier IQ came under strict surveillance and its activities were monitored.  Creating more confusion were the rumours that all Android devices have teethed with the software had implications on your privacy.

The Carrier IQ software found its way into iPhones as well, but they need to be activated by the user for them to be upfront and running. Hence, in this case it is unable to collect detailed information on the user phone.

We Solemnly Declare

Responding to outcry of, privacy of individuals at risk, Nokia has blatantly made it known that their devices are not loaded with Carrier IQ software.

Verizon has led the cat out of the bag by declaring that they do collect information about the user, but for reasons relating to marketing purposes only. They offer you to opt out, if it concerns you getting bugged by unwanted market deals.

Carrier IQ has also insisted that they don’t read SMS messages, they just come with phone numbers attached to it and are never stored, analysed or made any other use of it.

Relax Breathe Easy

Though the scepticism which Carrier IQ software generated, things are all that worry-some for:

Okay, agreed the software give away your location. But what the heck you care, you are already making your presence felt via the smartphones features you use, like searching for great places nearby, and other similar features which are a giveaway of your where about. Your location is also triangulated through GPS or cell towers.  Then again, without become panicky you can say, these location trackers are actually for the service providers for the analytical purpose, and not for just pinning you down personally.

Then, again these service provider company are not mob syndicates, or a spy agency. They may not even look at your information data. They have lot at stake and they cannot afford controversies over the illegitimate issues of spying on people.

Options

But, if it still makes you uneasy, all you have to do is turn your location tracker off, that simple. For Android applications you can, go to Settings > Location and Security, and uncheck “Use Wireless Networks”. Likewise you can stop your location monitor in iPhones as well.

You can also review the permissions of each app before you go ahead installing it. If you feel comfortable, you go ahead with it. For Android user you can use the ‘Permission Dog’ to view the apps permission settings.

You can also check for which apps accesses your location data, by using securities apps like ‘previously mentioned ESET Mobile Security’, for Android and for iPhones use can use ‘Lookout’.’

But then again, policies are being implemented to scrutinize, as to what kind of the information these services providers are storing and for how long. There is a call for transparency while revealing of the facts and figures.

Benefits of Apps

Hence, you can put your minds to rest, for there are policies and governing agencies out there to protect your privacy and there are laws for prosecution if they are violated.

Instead, look at the benefits the service providers give us, the innovative apps that make your life easy. Like there are apps for making your travel related reservations, or online shopping. You have other innovative apps which analyses the water requirements for your body, and gives you suggestions. So, go for them, you can ideally go to any renowned online stores like Stanfy.com, where go have an array of such smart apps to pick from. They will further simplify your life for you.

 

Author Bio: Maryna Iasynetska is a web enthusiast and blogger who loves UX,  design, technologies and active sports. She is the marketing manager at Stanfy.com – mobile development company in San-Francisco and owns several mobile oriented blogs.

Image Courtesy: frankrizzo805 via Flickr.com

 
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Comparing the One X and HTC Butterfly

Posted by Admin on Aug 16, 2013 in Mobiles

The HTC Smartphone line is a favorite all over the world because it is known to have a great display and solid hardware. The HTC One X was released last year and loved by most who owned it because of it brought the 720p resolution to Smartphones. The newest version, the HTC Butterfly, takes the resolution to 1080p, but is it worth the upgrade? Here we will answer that question for you by taking a look at what you get with both phones. Android

 

While you won’t see a significant change in their overall physical appearances, the Butterfly is just a little bit thicker all the way around. The HTC One X is curvier than the Butterfly, but both are known to be easy to grip. It’s never good to accept a phone for its feel alone, but I’d have to give the HTC One the edge because it’s one of the most comfortable phones I’ve ever held in my hands.

 

One difference we noticed right away was that the Butterfly has its power button situated right in top-middle of the phone. This is far more convenient to the user than the button being on the top-right, as it is on the One X. These little tweaks are what returning customers really appreciate, and we certainly liked this design change a lot.

 

As far as significant changes go, the Butterfly sports a five inch screen, which fantastically shows off its 1080p display. 1080P is pretty much always going to look better than 720p, but looking at the same movie on these two phones, it really does take some effort to see a significant difference. However, the edge has to go to the Butterfly because it is a larger screen and just as beautiful as the HTC One.

 

The camera on the HTC One is fantastic, but once again the Butterfly wins here because it can now shoot in 1080p. That alone wouldn’t be enough because some phones just have bad cameras, but the image stabilization works brilliantly, and just about all of the pictures we shot looked great. Both phones have decent front-facing cameras, so the only difference is the quality. You can’t go wrong with either set of cameras, but most people will like what they get from the Butterfly more.

 

As far as hardware goes, the Butterfly definitely received some upgrades. While it may not be noticeable to most people, it’s still worth going over so you can decide for yourself if these changes are worthy of an uptick in price. The One X comes with 1 GB of RAM, while the Butterfly has two. The processor is also better on the Butterfly, as it is equipped with a Quad core chip that makes working with multiple apps a breeze. The One X can handle multiple processes well, but not quite as well as the Butterfly.

 

While you may be thinking that all of this makes the Butterfly a definite upgrade and a worthy purchase, it is worth noting that the One X is actually the better gaming phone. The GeForce video card on the One X makes every graphic on the screen pop and you will very rarely have any type of skipping. This is rare on a phone and an area where the One X blows the Butterfly out of the water.

 

If you are a fan of removable storage, then the Butterfly is the phone for you because the One X unfortunately lacks this feature. It might actually be the only huge con with the One X, but it might not be something that a lot of people care about. It’s still surprising that they decided to leave this feature off of the One X, though, because most phones have had it for years now.

 

The Butterfly does get the slight edge in battery performance, but you’d have to be watching the clock to really notice the difference. Honestly, you’ll be happy with the battery life on either phone.

 

The operating system is on the same on both devices, but people who buy the Butterfly might not be too happy with the skin they’ll have to deal with. Jelly Bean works equally as well on both the Butterfly and the One X, but the Sense UI layer on the Butterfly isn’t as nice to look at, nor is it as easy to navigate as the skins used on the One X. This is usually a feature that isn’t all too important, but you do have to look at the UI more often than anything else, so it has to be considered when choosing between these two Smartphones.

 

Well, that’s as much as I can do to compare these two devices, but it’s always better to look at any Smartphone you’re interested in for yourself. Both the Butterfly and the HTC One are awesome phones, but we think the Butterfly is a little bit better because of its bigger screen and slightly better internals. Still, you can’t go wrong with either phone.

Image via Flickr by EricaJoy

 
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Finding an Inexpensive Android Phone

Posted by Admin on Aug 13, 2013 in Mobiles, Technology

 

androooooIt used to be that the only way you could buy an Android phone without having to spend a bundle was to buy a very old and outdated one. Not only would you have old software and hardware, you’d also have the occasional look of pity from all of your friends who had the newest devices.

This is no longer the case because you can now find dozens of fantastic Android phones that are less than a year old in most cases. The reason for this is that there are more and more phones being made.

Androids for Under $100

Believe it or not, you can actually get a great smartphone for less than $100 these days that can handle the most popular apps and won’t leave you feeling embarrassed. A smart idea is to think of exactly what you want from your phone – from screen size to processor speed – and then look up what’s available.

The truth is that you can get an Android phone for closer to $70 now, but you’ll obviously be looking at smartphones with less overall pizazz. It’s worth it to save a few more dollars to get a better product, but it’s not absolutely necessary if you can get by with what comes on the cheaper Droids.

It’s important that you know what to look for in a $100 or cheaper phone so you can get the features that you need most. Don’t just buy the first one you see or there’s a pretty good chance you will regret it.

Operating System

One of the mistakes that people make when they buy the cheaper Androids is they focus way too much on how the phone looks rather than what’s inside. You might not be able to get the Jelly Bean OS, but you definitely can’t accept less than Ice Cream Sandwich (Android version 4.0), which will allow you to use just about everything on the Google Play market.

Once you have a few phones to choose from, you’ll need to see how their operating systems perform on each device. You might think that because all of them have Ice Cream Sandwich that they’ll be about the same, but you’d be sorely wrong in that assumption. You’ll want to see how the phone was built to work with the operating system so you can have a better idea about how well each phone performs and how they can handle your favorite apps.

Pretty much every discount Android phone is going to be bloated with the manufacturer’s software, but some of them don’t interfere with the operating system as the others do. This is why testing out every phone you’re interested in is vital. You’ll be able to see first-hand how each one handles the apps that you plan on using frequently.

You don’t want to make the mistake of looking too much at the hardware. There’s a chance that you will have a phone that has below average software that slows the whole thing down. Take your time and make sure that the OS is just as solid as the hardware your smartphone comes with.

Processor and Other Hardware

As far as hardware goes, you should always look to get the best processor that you can with the money that you have available. This way you can be sure that your pone’s engine will always be able to handle whatever you throw at it.

While you won’t be able to get the best processor out there for 100 bucks or less, you can get a phone that won’t be jittery when using the latest apps or games. The only real downside to cheaper processors is that you won’t be able to have as many apps open at the same time as you would with a higher end Android smartphone.

Touchscreens have been made to be very responsive the last couple of years, so you shouldn’t have a problem in that department. What you will usually have to sacrifice, though, is resolution. While it would be nice to get the clearest screen possible, in most cases you can make due with what you get on a discount smartphone.

Hardware specs can be confusing at times, so be sure to do all of the necessary research before you commit to any phone.

Getting the Best Deal

Sometimes it’s not easy to get everything you want from an inexpensive smartphone, but you can definitely come close to what you want these days. It is just a matter of deciding what you must have, and what’s not as important to you. Chances are you will get a phone you can be happy with without having to spend a boatload of money.
Image via Flickr by Tama Leaver

 
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Samsung Galaxy Ace: Budget Android With Tons Of Features

Posted by Admin on Jun 6, 2013 in Mobiles

If you are fond of the Samsung Android phones but cannot afford the high end ones like the Galaxy S2 then you can try the new Galaxy Ace. This cute phone which resembles an iPhone to an extent offers a good blend of features and performance. The design of the phone is simple yet sleek with a grip friendly back cover and glossy front. Despite its plastic body the phone feels reassuringly solid in hands. It is rather light.

The Touch screen interface of the phone is quick but the display is not very sharp owing to its 320×480-pixel resolution. It does not have the super bright AMOLED display Samsung is known for. It has a regular LCD but that is quite easy to read even in daylight. The battery life of the Ace is superb and moderate users can expect it to last for more than two days on a single recharge. That is really nice for an Android phone. Connectivity wise it offers GPS and WiFi as well.

The Ace runs Android 2.2 Froyo which may not be the latest version but still offers a lot for the average users. Ace has a superb web browser and you may not feel the need for Opera Mini. The only drawback is that it does not support Flash playback. Its portable hotspot feature is awesome which negates the need of buying 3G dongle. You can also download tons of apps from the Android Market along with games. As far as multimedia goes the Acer has a 5MP camera with LED flash.

 
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HTC Sensation Makes Waves Before Commercial Launch

Posted by Admin on Jun 1, 2013 in Mobiles

HTC the Taiwanese cell phone handsets maker is on a high these days with its Android and Windows Phone 7 devices making the right noises in tech circles. It has a number of handsets lined up for release and they have all drawn rave reviews from the tech experts. The latest handset announced by the company is Sensation. It is going to replace the Desire HD as it looks like and has some noteworthy features. The USP of the model is its gorilla glass protected screen. The contoured glass adds to the looks of the model and it saves the screen from scratches says HTC.

The body of the phone is made up of unibody aluminum as is the case with a number of HTC phones. Its 4.3 inch screen may seem large for a smart phone but it is great to use. The phone has a Super LCD qHD display with 540 x 960 resolution. It comes close to the iPhone 4’s retina display. The images look sharp on it and colors pop out. Owing to the screen’s 16: 9 aspect ratio, watching movies on it is sheer pleasure. There is a front facing camera with 1.2 MP resolution for video calling. At the back side there is an 8MP camera with twin LED flash. It also has 2 microphones for enabling stereo recording.

The camera is good but it falls short of the quality of the camera used in Nokia N8. The camera is also capable of recording FullHD video at 30 FPS. The phone is powered by a mighty dual core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor that runs at a speed of 1.2 GHz. HTC says that the dual core CPU helps in faster browsing, app launch and multi tasking. The phone runs Android 2.3 and there is an improved version of HTC Sense atop it. The screen animations look very smooth as well.

 
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Toshiba Portege R830: Impressive Ultraportable Laptop

Posted by Admin on May 31, 2013 in Laptop

The new Toshiba Portege R830 has been released as a successor to the R700 and it has some similarities with the predecessor. The new Portege R830 is powered by a new Intel Core series CPU and also packs in faster interfaces like USB 3.0 which makes it a suitable contender for the demanding users looking for a portable yet powerful laptop. The lightweight laptop is solidly built and the magnesium alloy chassis is the proof of that. It impresses with its stellar battery life which even beats the MacBook Pro 13 inch model. You can customize the configuration as per your need.

It is not as svelte as the MacBook Air or the Samsung’s Series 9 laptops but it is pretty lightweight. The isolated island type keys are used in this model. The Touchpad is quite large and smooth to use. Sadly the R830 does not have a backlit keyboard but the typing experience is awesome. Toshiba packs in a number of utilities with this model and some of them are quite useful.

The laptop’s 13.3 inch screen offers a 1,366 x 768 resolution which is typical. The screen’s viewing angles are not great as such. The laptop comes with Intel’s new WiDi technology and WiMax. For storage there is the 640GB 5,400rpm HDD. It performs slightly slower than the new Sandy Bridge Core i5 MacBook Pro but outperforms Samsung’s new 9 Series. The new Integrated Intel HD graphics is better than any other onboard graphics solution but it still lacks the punch to run the latest games at smooth frame rates.

 
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Welcome to iphonelauncher

Posted by Admin on Feb 20, 2012 in General tech

Welcome to iphonelauncher.com. This site gives you all the information on the latest technologies and updates relating to software, computers, laptops, mobiles & iphone.

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