Do you like music? Of course you do. Then do yourself a favour and sit down comfortably, put on your best headphones and listen to Lucifer (Naked Edition) by the up and coming Swedish artist XOV. It’s almost hypnotizing.
Don’t you just hate it when iOS apps are released only in selected (often the US) App Stores and you live in some other great country? Like when Facebook released their hyped Facebook Paper in the US a few days ago or when Clash Of Clans creators Supercell chose to soft launch their latest game Boom Beach only in Canada.
Luckily, it’s not that hard to create a new Apple ID valid in the US, Canada or any other App Store. Here’s how to to do it:
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So, we had a few very exciting, interesting and busy couple of days at AlternativeTo this week. If you’re not already familiar with our website, the whole purpose of it is to help people find good alternatives to applications and web services they for some reason want to (or have to) replace.
We are very happy to have a good number of people coming to the site every day looking for alternatives and we have also seen some fantastic links and mentions during the years from all kinds of websites, blogs, podcasts and other types of media. But nothing that has happened to our site in the past can compare to what happened a few days ago.
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When I first heard about Fogg and its offer I thought it sounded too good to be true. I recently wrote about how I usually try to buy a local prepaid SIM-card when I’m abroad in order to avoid the ridiculous prices for using data while roaming on a local network. This behavior might be about to change.
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I recently spent a week in lovely San Francisco together with my colleague Ola. While there is much to see and do in this city our reason to go there was to work so being connected to the internet at almost all times was crucial for us. When you are abroad everything is so much easier and more efficient with access to maps, directions and services like Yelp and Foursquare. At home most of us are so connected these days that we take it for granted, but as soon as you leave your home country the mobile operators charge ridiculous amounts for using 3G data when roaming on a local network. This is really sad and not worthy the year 2013 but that’s how things still work, unfortunately, so we have to look at other options.
Before this trip I wasn’t too optimistic about actually be able to be online all the time since that would require some kind of prepaid SIM-card with 3G data and this has been rumored to be very hard to find in the US at a reasonable price point, or even at all. Everything turned out very well for us though and this is a short report about the mix of services and technologies that helped us achieve this.
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I picked up the iPad mini early morning on my short vacation in London and have just taken it for a short spin for obvious reasons. Some quick thoughts though:
Fantastic form factor
I was pretty sure after using a full size iPad that smaller tablets were not for me but I was wrong. Very wrong. I have mainly used my previous iPad for reading and watching video and the iPad mini is just perfect for this type of tasks. I can’t see myself ever going back to a full size iPad after using this little thing, but who knows?
Retina displays are nice
The main concern for me (and probably everyone else) when the iPad mini was presented was the lack of a retina display. Many Apple users have been seduced by the sharp, beautiful displays on iPhone 4/4S/5, iPad 3 and the new MacBook Pro. Let’s be perfectly honest here: when you pick up this new iPad for the first time you definitely feel that something is missing. I got used to the non-retina display pretty fast and the smaller physical size of the display do work it’s magic for the iPad 2 screen resolution. I would have loved to see a retina display in the mini but I’m not the Apple employee that has to worry about battery life, production costs and performance. Next year, probably.
Small, thin, light
You really feel the same way about the iPad mini as you probably did when you first held an iPhone 5 in your hand. It’s so small, light and thin it almost feels unreal or even like it’s some kind of a in-store dummy unit.
Red + black
I went for the black model with a red Smart Cover. It’s a winning combination for sure and I wouldn’t have thought about it if it wasn’t for the video review over at The Verge.
WIFI is good, but…
Only WIFI models were available at launch and I have not been using the cellular on my previous iPad very much so I though this was a good way to go. The first thing I really missed was a SIM card slot but that might be much due to the fact that I’m on vacation. Thank god for tethering.
We all know it already but iCloud is really, really great when setting up a new device. We take it for granted these days but wow, it’s good!
Killer blogging tool
I am writing this short post from the iPad mini and it works like a charm. Is this the ultimate portable blogging tool? It probably will be for many.
“I fell in love with these kids. And I didn’t want to see them fall victim to the system. So I made ‘em a promise. I told them if they graduated from high school, I would pay for their college education. I have made some empty promises in my life but, hands down that was the most generous.”
— Michael Gary Scott, The Office US
Steve Jobs passed away today and he left a world behind him that is a bit better because of what he accomplished in his life.
I thought today would be a good day to share one of those short but effective email replies that some of us were lucky to get from Steve after contacting him on the now forever silent firstname.lastname@example.org adress. Not because it means anything to most people but because it meant something to me. A trivial question about something that doesn’t matter very much, but the two word reply made me happy back in July 2010 and it sure was nice to have another look at it today.
As an early AirTunes user I was hoping to be able to stream music directly from my iPhone. So I decided to ask the one who definitely knew what was planned and what wasn’t.
Three hours later I received the reply that I didn’t expect. I regarded it as a confirmation of a so far not announced feature in iOS, but I decided not to leak the info to any of the Apple blogs.
Of course the feature was announced and released later. Attention to all the small details…
Thanks for all the magic, Steve.
“Wu-Tang is for the children” - Ol’ Dirty Bastard, 1998