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Weekend of March 1st, 2013

Dave was in Barcelona bringing you the latest from the Mobile World Congress show floor and the ShowStoppers press event!

ITTV Video Update

Dave reports from Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain.

Are you looking for a simple cell phone without all the bells and whistles of a typical Smartphone? James Lezcano is here this week to show us one of the latest offerings in Virgin Mobile's lineup of simple, low-cost, pre-paid phones. Also Chris Graveline takes us back into yesterday with "This Week in Tech History."

Listeners & Guests on the show this week:

For ALL the details ... be sure to listen to the show by downloading the MP3 or clicking the RED & WHITE "Play" button on the media player, both on the right-hand side of this page.


HOUR 1:


Tech News & Commentary

Keith in Shreveport, Louisiana calling in via the App asked: "I'm in the military, getting ready to go overseas. My wife is an Apple zombie and I'm an Android Acolyte. I was wanting to get a Google Nexus 7 to take with my so I can Skype with my wife on her iPad Mini. Are we going to have compatibility problems?"

 

No Keith, you'll be just fine.

Skype works on both platforms and you don't have to worry about what she's running it on, iPad, computer, phone, even some TVs... as long as the device is compatible with Skype you won't have any compatibility issues.

You won't be able to FaceTime with her, but Skype should present no problems at all.

 

For more information tune in to Hour 1 of our podcast.

 

 



Consumer Reports Feature
with Matt Ferretti


Just this past week Sony announced that the Playstation 4 will arrive later this year. What can we expect from this hotly-anticipated new gaming console? Consumer Reports gaming expert Matt Ferretti is here give us a rundown of the new features.

 

 

 

 

The "Into Tomorrow" team discussed the latest apps that they have been playing with recently.


    • Mark recommends: The History Channel, FREE

     

    "The History Channel app. I'm a history fan, and I love watching the History Channel, although I'm as mystified as you are about why "Cajun Pawn Stars" is considered "history." The History Channel app brings together shows and topics into one easy to use app that allows you to browse full episodes or clips of shows, and look through lists of historical topics. Select the one you want, and the video begins to play. It really couldn't be any easier. It's guaranteed to catch the interest of your kids, and anything that helps them learn about history is a GOOD thing, in my book. The History Channel app is free in the iTunes app store." -- Mark


    • James recommends: MoviePass, FREE

     

    "My app of the week is MoviePass, now I know all you HypePhone users I mean iPhone users were already able to download this app but it recently became available on Droid and I gotta tell ya, if you're a movie buff like me this app makes sense for you. The idea is pretty simple, for anywhere between $25 to $40 bucks a month depending on where you are, you can go to a theater and watch a movie every single day. When you use your MoviePass app to select what movie you want to see and where you want to see it, MoviePass temporarily unlocks a debit card they send you that you use to purchase your tickets. I get a lot out of it because I go to the movies fairly often and down here in Miami, with popcorn and soda and the whole deal, a single trip can easily run you about $35 without breaking a sweat. So if you like going to the movies get MoviePass, if you go once in a blue moon it doesn't make sense for you." -- James



What are your favorite Apps? Let us know at 800-899-INTO and we'll feature them in this segment!

Tune in to Hour 1 of our podcast for more details

Mobile World Congress Reports...

HOUR 1 GUESTS    
Jamie Moran - Blackberry
Kabir Kasargod - Qualcomm Life


Ken in St. Joseph, Michigan listens Online asked: "Daughter's being deployed next year. She's looking for an external hard drive that she can load up with movies and music. Is there a better hard drive than the other? There's a lot out there."

 

Hard drives don’t differ much. “Better or worse” really mostly comes down to better or worse suited for your purposes. If you plan on using one while moving, then a heavy one that requires being plugged-in is probably “bad”. If you plan to just leave it on a desk, it isn’t and would likely be cheaper.

In your daughter’s case, she may benefit from having a rugged hard drive. They’ll hold up a little better to rough treatment and she won’t have to worry too much about being gentle with it.

Rugged hard drives will cost a little more than comparable non-rugged versions, but they’re not too expensive. You can find them for under $100. For example, the LaCie Rugged Mini starts at $95 for 500GB of storage.

Since she plans to put space hogging media on the drive, larger capacity drives will probably serve her better. Since you are concerned about reliability, you might want to investigate very large flash memory drives. Prices vary widely on these, depending on capacity and speed, with 256GB USB 3.0 models selling for hundreds of dollars. But 128GB USB 2.0 models are under $100, and two or three of those might be more useful, and more reliable, than an external hard drive.

 

For more information tune in to Hour 1 of our podcast.

 

Gilbert asked: "Hi Dave! My name is Gilbert. I am thinking of getting one of those solidoodle 3D printers.
What kind of independent reviews do they get?"

 

For the price, the Solidoodle isn’t bad. It doesn’t seem to be as refined as some of the competition, but it also costs a quarter as the price of the competition.

You should be able to find 3D models easily enough, and Solidoodle offers 7 days a week tech support, but still, this printer won’t be the easiest product in the world to use.

You will need to read through the manuals, because some precautions listed on the manuals won’t be observed by the software you have to use (for example, maximum operating temperatures may be less than the maximum temperature the computer software and the printer’s firmware will allow), and you may need to open it and make manual adjustments with a screwdriver, like we’ve had to.

Current Solidoodle models are kind of early drafts, they are selling, they can print models, but they’re not by any means as easy to use as, say, the Epson WorkForce we have at the office to print on paper.

Do you know what you’d like to print? do you need prototypes of your own models? if you do, then this printer may be great for you, but day to day, it may not be as useful as you’d hope.

If you do end up buying it, use the lead time to learn a little bit about it, so that you can use it correctly and not run into any trouble.

 

For more information tune in to Hour 1 of our podcast.

 

Dave in Tyrone, Pennsylvania listening on 103.1 WRSC asked: "My children have a Kindle Fire and I was wondering if you could play movies from that on a television."

 

It depends on what Kindle Fire you have.

If you have the original version, you’re out of luck, the original Kindle Fire was not built with video-out capabilities.
If you have a Kindle Fire HD though, not only can you do it, but you can do it very cheaply.

The Kindle Fire HD comes with a mini-HDMI connector, all you have to do is buy a mini-HDMI to HDMI cable, which you can find only for next to nothing, plug it into your TV and you’re ready to go.

You should be able to play movies from your Kindle Fire, whether they’re from Netflix, Amazon On-Demand, downloaded movies, YouTube videos or pretty much anything else.

Keep in mind that if you want to sit on the other side of the room with your Kindle Fire and have its display output on your HDTV, you will need a longer HDMI cable. You’ll see a lot of things said about HDMI cable lengths. In our experience, anything under 15 feet rarely, if ever, presents a problem. Beyond that point, you might have trouble, depending on your cable.

There are wireless HDMI extender kits selling for around $200, but we’ve heard mixed things about those. So just give some thought to the distance this cable needs to run and plan accordingly.

 

For more information tune in to Hour 1 of our podcast.

 

HOUR 2:

Tech News & Commentary


Al in Bangor, Maine listening to WOSH Online asked: "I just bought a tablet and I'm not sure if you need to have virus protection on a tablet. I assume you do. Wondering if you could give me an idea of what's available. It's an Android tablet."

Don’t bother with virus protection, tablets and smartphones are not built the way computers are, apps are sandboxed and cannot interact with other apps, so you won’t get a virus that will spread and infect your system, what you can get is a malicious app that will try to steal some of your information.

Even that has gotten harder these days, since all new mobile operating systems will ask you to confirm that you’re ok with the app accessing your contacts, or emails, or pictures, or whatever it wants to access, but it’s still the biggest threat.

Just make sure that whatever app you download is reputable, read reviews if you’re not sure, and try not download anything that looks too spammy, but a full virus scanner is pretty pointless on a system where threats are going to be app by app, and not system wide. If an app got through your app store’s filters and you tries to do any harm, that sole app will be the culprit, it won’t be able to modify system files or infect others.

There is one big exception, if your tablet is rooted, that’s a different ballgame, each apps may be able to request root access and change anything and everything they want. If that’s the case be a lot more careful, but unless you’ve rooted your tablet, each app will be living in it’s tiny little world, unaware of anything else around it, and that makes antiviruses much less necessary or useful.

One good barometer of how important tablet antivirus apps are is whether or not you hear anyone who is NOT part of a security software company talking about them. When no one except for those wanting to sell you something say that you need it? That’s always a good sign that you can pass.

 

Tune in to Hour 2 of our podcast for more details.

 


This Week in Tech History Host: Chris Graveline

 

"This Week in Tech History" Weekly Feature with Chris Graveline

 

 

 


 

Terry in Joplin, Missouri listens to the Podcast and is calling in via the App listens to the stream on the iPhone App and Podcasts asked: "I purchased a Nexus 7 and I purchased a case with it. It got to where after a few minutes the screen would go blank like it was going to sleep. You tap the power button and it would come back on for a second and flash off. It would do it repeatedly. You take it our of the case and it would work just fine. Little confused. Need a case for it but I don’t know what is causing the problem. Also, looking for a good set of earbuds. Not real expensive but something that is comfortable to wear. I can't wear an over the head headset and some earbuds just aren't comfortable. Can you suggest something that gives good audio quality?"

 

It sound like your case is blocking the ambient light sensor. Most tablets and smartphones have an ambient light sensor for the purpose of keeping the light as it needs to be for you to read it comfortably in the room you’re in, while at the same time keeping it as dim as it can go as not to waste battery life (or hurt your eyes).

If your case is blocking that sensor, there’s a decent chance your tablet won’t know any better, it will just assume that you’re in a very dark room and lower the brightness to conserve both battery life and your retinas.

You’re best bet is to buy a new case that has a hole over the sensor to let light in.

As for the earbuds, that really depends on what you want to spend. The Sennheiser MM 70i is a great pair of earphones from experience. They provide a great amount of low and high levels. They are very comfortable with a variety of changeable earbuds to adapt to your ear. And retail for less than $70.

Also a few of us here, use the Yurbuds. They are designed to stay in your ear no matter what you are doing, especially during exercise, and they sound pretty good, considering the price. You can pick up a pair of the yurbuds from 30 to around 100 bucks depending on which pair you choose.


Tune in to Hour 2 of our podcast for more details.

Mobile World Congress Reports...

HOUR 2 GUESTS    
Gabriel Wilensky - Go Pro
Ian Renwick - Novotel Wireless

 

Mark from Harlan, Indiana listens via the Android App asked: "My question is about my internet DSL connection. I would love to cut my cable line and use internet tv. But my problem is the very inconsistent speed I receive. I pay for 7 meg. But rarely hit 3 meg.  They replaced my modem with no real difference. I also get times with no service. Is DSL a fancy name for dial up. Thank You...."

 

No, DSL is actual broadband, but what kind of speeds you get depend on a lot of things that you don’t really have much control over.

The current fastest DSL demoed is something around 300mbps, but that’s being fairly close to a node, when you move a little farther away from the node your speeds start dropping, and even using the same connection, at double the distance the speeds dropped to 100mbps. Most residential DSL is considerably slower than that.

Now, the reason you’re getting 3 mbps instead of 7 mbps, may be that you’re far away from a node, but it may also just be that the phone wires around you or even in your home are very old, the quality of the wires affects your speed.

If your problem wasn’t the modem, and your ISP hasn’t offered up any other alternative, you may be out of options. You talk about wanting to cut the cable and use Internet TV, have you considered using the cable company to do that? they might be able to give you faster internet access, and you may be able to get rid of their TV service using the internet service. Remember, however, that getting rid of actual TV service and trying to use the Internet as your television does come with its own set of problems. You won’t have any live sports, or at least very LITTLE live sports, unless you pay for an ESPN subscription. And you won’t be able to watch some of the most popular network shows until a day or two after they’re aired. SOME networks archive shows the same day, but if the show is hot they like to leverage that. When you break it all down, while you can easily replace PREMIUM service like movie channels and such, it is usually not worth it to replace basic TV service with streaming content only.

For more information, tune in to Hour 2 of our podcast.

 

Jack in Los Alamos, New Mexico listening Online asked: "The motherboard in my desktop computer has been fried. I'm wondering about buying another board and replacing it. How do I keep my OS? I've been using Windows 7. Can I just put in my old Hard Drive and use it that way?"

 

Depending on whether your PC is made by a popular manufacturer such as Dell or HP or if it’s a custom built one it is possible to change to the exact same motherboard and keep the hard drive, however, it’s not recommended because there might be some driver and compatibility issues. We recommend that you do a clean install of your operating system and restore your files from a backup, or if you don’t have one, get a new drive, install Windows and restore from your old drive.

Also if your motherboard had fried, we would like to advise you to make sure that your CPU and components haven’t suffered from damage because if you put faulty components in your new motherboard, it may damage it.
So please be carefull.

 

For more information, tune in to Hour 2 of our podcast.

 

Steve in New Jersey listens to the Podcast sent us a comment about his experience with the iPhone 4 and iTunes.

 

For more information, tune in to Hour 2 of our podcast.


HOUR 3:

Tech News & Commentary


Mike in Wyoming listens on Stitcher and is calling in via the App asked: "Samsung Galaxy S3 - I'm hard of hearing and unless I have my hearing aids in, I can't hear it. Is there any way we can turn up the vibration so it vibrates more and I can feel it?"

You aren’t the only one who feels the vibration level is a bit weak it’s apparently a common complaint about the Samsung Galaxy S3. Fortunately though the problem might be pretty simple to fix. If you go to settings you can change the vibration pattern setting your phone is currently on.

The general consensus among Galaxy S3 users is that the vibration tone that is the strongest is the Jingle Bells pattern. So simply pull up your menu bar, select settings, under device select sound then device vibration and voila! You’ll see the jingle bells vibration setting available. I’m willing to bet yours is currently set on basic call.

So give that a shot and let us know how it goes. If that doesn’t work, you might have to take it in to your local carrier store for a little tweaking.


For more information, tune in to Hour 3 of our podcast.

 


Into Gaming Update Host: Mark Lautenschlager



"Into
Gaming Update” Weekly Feature with Mark Lautenschlager

 

 

 


 

Nick in Decatur, Illinois listens on 100.9 WZUS asked: "I have an ASUS EEE Netbook. Several months ago it began to freeze then it crashed. I was able to revive it but now it runs real slow. Is there anything I can do to make it faster like replace the RAM or is it time to buy a new laptop?"

 

Yes. It is always time to buy a new laptop.

But seriously, the first thing I would do is indeed confirm that it isn’t just that your RAM module is fried and replace it. I would also consider the possibility that you have malicious programs running so you might want to run a diagnostics on it. It’s also important to remember that the Netbook is not built to be used like a normal laptop so if the operator is using it with that expectation you could be indeliberately running too many programs or maxing out it’s Intel Atom processor capacity in some way which will cause sluggish performance.


For more information, tune in to Hour 3 of our podcast.

 

Nick in Decatur, Illinois listens on 100.9 WZUS asked: "I have an ASUS EEE Netbook. Several months ago it began to freeze then it crashed. I was able to revive it but now it runs real slow. Is there anything I can do to make it faster like replace the RAM or is it time to buy a new laptop?"

 

Yes. It is always time to buy a new laptop.

But seriously, the first thing I would do is indeed confirm that it isn’t just that your RAM module is fried and replace it. I would also consider the possibility that you have malicious programs running so you might want to run a diagnostics on it. It’s also important to remember that the Netbook is not built to be used like a normal laptop so if the operator is using it with that expectation you could be indeliberately running too many programs or maxing out it’s Intel Atom processor capacity in some way which will cause sluggish performance.


For more information, tune in to Hour 3 of our podcast.

 

Jason from Nashville, Tennessee listening on “Super Talk” 99.7 WTN asked: "Do you think 3d TV will phase out."

 

Actually... apparently it will become the standard, but not in the way you may think.

It turns out there is such little interest in 3DTVs that selling 3D as a premium feature is not working at all, so rumors are that the strategy has shifted to making 3D a standard feature on all new TVs and not bothering advertising it much. Instead if will now “just be there” and hopefully people will use it more over time.

Manufacturer’s new focus seems be Internet integration now, which is more reasonable, considering consumers actually have an interest in internet enabled TVs..

What I do think we will see in the coming years is the progressive evolution into and standardization of 3D augmented reality for television viewing only because the possibilities of such a thing are going to be extremely cool. I mean imagine watching your favorite action movie, or whatever kind of movie, as if it were taking place in your very own living room. I’m not talking about perceiving an extra dimension of depth on the screen, I mean life-sized digital hologram projections of Sam Jackson and John Travolta blowing away Frank Whaley in the beginning of Pulp Fiction. That’s where I see 3d Tv going.


For more information, tune in to Hour 3 of our podcast.

 

Victor in Aurora, Colorado listens to the podcast asked: "My TV is about ready to go out in my truck. I drive over the road. I have this idea instead of  buying a TV, replacing it with about a 15-inch laptop. What would be a good tuner for it? I'd also like to play games. Not high tech games, just "regular games. And whatever else I could find to do with it. What will be a good laptop and a good tuner? And does it matter if I go Windows 7 or Windows 8?"

 

With Hulu and Netflix, you’re gonna have a hard time finding TV tuning cards for laptops anymore. Hauppauge still makes their WinTV Aero-m, but at $80 it’s not very cheap.

You can always just use those streaming services, Hulu will cover a lot of the content you would get over the air and it’s not too delayed, but you will need an internet connection for that.

As for playing basic games, if you’re not talking about high end shooters most laptops will be able to handle the basic ones.

For $730, Acer offers Aspire models with Core i7 processors and 6GB of RAM, they have integrated graphics cards, but it should still be enough to play quite a lot of games.

You can find ASUS models for about $700 that also have Core i7 processors, but come with a little less RAM, around 4GBs, those should serve you well enough too, if you’re not going to be playing super high tech games.


For more information, tune in to Hour 3 of our podcast.

Mobile World Congress Reports...

HOUR 3 GUESTS    
Siebrand Dijkstra - AppMachine
Patrick O'Neil - Olloclip

 

 


IFA History Feature

"IFA History Feature” brought to you by Messe-Berlin

The first navigation system was a girl: “Carin”, was the name of the system developed by Philips which was demonstrated at IFA, the International Funkausstellung in 1993 and tested the same year. The name Carin was short for “Car Information and Navigation System”. Data was stored on a CD and a built-in computer used sensors and optional GPS to select the best route. The result was displayed on a screen and verbalized with a speech synthesizer.

 


 

 

Ray in Bentonville, Arkansas listening to the Podcasts asked: "I'm tired of spending hours updating GPS like Garmin and Tom Tom. Can I just buy a CD-ROM from the company and update my GPS? If there's no company out there that does that, I'm just gonna sell them all and use my cell phone."

 

You can, it’s usually not a CD-ROM but an SD card, but it’s possible.

The problem is that you’d be paying for new maps, the same as if you had an Italian GPS and wanted to purchase maps of the US for an upcoming trip here.

Why are updates taking you hours? if it’s a broadband issue, you might be better served asking a friend to download them for you and THEN put them on CD-ROM or a flash drive and install them from there.

As for using your phone, it may be a decent solution, you can even buy GPS software for your phone from those same companies, so you’d have access to their same maps.

Having said that, if you already have standalone GPS units, try downloading the maps from a place with faster broadband and see if that helps, it may be the easiest solution for you.



For more information, tune in to Hour 3 of our podcast.

 


If you have any questions about any of this week's show info, please email us here.

This Week’s Prizes for Our Listeners

Covington Creations: Earbud yo-yo -- A simple solution to tangled earbuds.

Iolo: System Mechanic – Fix and speed up your PC... Automatically.

Magellan: eXplorist 610 – Premium, rugged, handheld GPS with camera, microphone and speaker to record all your actions in the outdoors.

Yamaha: PDX-11 Portable Speaker -- Free your iPod and iPhone music for your active Lifestyle.

 

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