Category: Gadgets

scentee phone adapter send a smell by textSmelivison never quite came to fruition but smexts just might. The new Scentee iPhone adapter makes it possible for you to send your nearest and dearest smells over the text waves.

The Scentee is made by Japanese firm ChatPerf and it alerts you to new texts and phone calls using the power of smell. It is described on the website as :

"for girls, for lovers, for children, for events -- find it by your sense of smell".

It's all a little bit odd and much like your phone turns into some sort of gasser. Sadly an array of scents is not available, just one smell per "scent tank" currently that really just kind of turns your phone into a glorified air freshener.

When a scent (call or text) comes through to your phone a red light comes on and a spray of mist comes out. It all sounds a bit surreal to us.

phone-in-toiletHow many of us have lost our phones at festivals raise your hands? A fair few I bet. What if we told you that there was a new festival phone that lasted just 35 days and cost only £13.

The new piece of tech called a dumbphone. The Nokia 105 (it's proper name) can go a whole 35 days without charging which as every festival goer knows - is a godsend. This phone is also a pretty good idea for anyone that has large nights out, is generally accident prone or likes some sort of adventure sports.

Apparently (and we're not sure if this is true but it does kind of makes sense) people are beginning to buy (at risk of sounding like a parent trying to use the latest slag) Drunkphones. Phones that are cheap and just for taking on nights out so that the pain of dropping a smart phone down the loo is avoided.

The Standard put together a list of goos festival phone options already out until the dumbphone is released :

Samsung E1200 for £14.95

SIM-free. Features include colour screen, hands free speakerphone/10 hours’ talk time/800 hours standby time/alarm and stopwatch. Argos.co.uk

Huawei G3512 for £17.21

Dual-SIM means it can take both contract and PAYG SIM cards simultaneously, so no worries about poor connectivity to any one network — a problem if you’re in a field in the middle of nowhere. prepaymania.co.uk

Tesco VM565 for £9

Handset only. Network: Virgin. Includes headphones, built-in FM radio/MP3 player/integrated camera/six hours of talk time /450 hours of standby time/GPRS, email capabilities and expandable memory slot. tesco.com

Alcatel One Touch 232 for £17.99

Includes £10 top up. Network: O2. FM radio/torch/games/ supports hands free/four hours’ talk time /200 hours standby. O2.com

Nokia 100 for £17.95

Includes £10 top-up. Network: Vodafone or O2. Basic 2G phone with texts, comes with torch and FM radio/840 hours standby.  carphonewarehouse.co.uk

With Tablets slowly replacing laptops everywhere nowadays, we thought we would check out how the low price end of the spectrum fairs against our tablet requirements. So, we got a hold of the comfortably priced JoyTab Duo 9.7 from UK company, Gemini Devices.

To try and compare this to the leading, well known tablets would not be fair, because of course using this is going to be a very different experience, but as the old saying goes, you get what you pay for. But what exactly, is missing from the tablet experience, and what does it surprisingly manage to pull off?

The Specs:

  • Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) Operating System
  • 9.7" Capacitive IPS Multi-Touch Screen
  • 1.5ghz ARM Cortex A9 Duo Core Processor
  • 1gb DDR3 SDRAM
  • Mali 400 Quad Core Open GL VE 2.O Graphics Card
  • 16gb Storage, Upgradeable to 32gb
  • 0.3 Megapixel Front Camera & 2 Megapixel rear camera
  • Mini HDMI Port
  • Mini USB Port
  • Built in speakers & Microphone
  • 3.5mm Headphone output
  • Wifi & Bluetooth Connection
  • Robust metal design
  • Weights around 632g
  • 10 hours Average Batter Life (we did not test this)

The Pro's:

  • This device comes with Android's Jellybean OS, which is something we're warming to more and more. This means you can get all those amazing Android apps such as the popular games, TV & Movie apps, music apps and more. Not to mention the cool widgets.
  • The Processor, RAM and Graphics Card in this tablet might not be able to compete with the high end tablet market, but it can still run most of the latest games to a decent standard. Though it might have taken a while to install a new and power demanding game such as Real Racing 3, it did still run and we raced a good few laps without any problems other than the obvious graphics quality limitations.
  • The screen is pretty responsive, games such as Angry Birds played perfectly and typing was fine, we noticed the tilt response sometimes seemed a bit off when playing racing games but that could have been down to some processor lag due to the game being pretty demanding on its requirements. It can also sometimes seem like it's not picking up your selections in the browser but really it's just taking a few seconds to load the page (this could have been a fault with our connection though - we'll give it the benefit of the doubt).
  • There is a MicroSD slot to expand your tablets memory, a feature sadly overlooked by the most popular tablet on the market and that always plays such a big role for those that do have it. Saving files to memory cards allows you more space to keep adding more and more to your tablet, rather than hitting limitations.
  • The screen quality is described as "Ultra Sharp" on the box, and though it has a decent 1024 x 768 resolution, we feel the pixel per inch rate (PPI) lets it down. Those that have used a high end tablet would definitely argue against the ultra sharp statement, however, to those new to the tablet world, once you've replaced the horrid default background with a high res image, you wouldn't really notice much pixelation when you're using an app and doing more than just staring at the screen. Plus the device offers 1080p HDMI output via its Mini HDMI port so you do supposedly get the option of better quality if using an external TV or monitor.

The Cons:

  • The JoyTab has attempted to follow suit when it comes to tablets in general and has gone for the stereotypical look, however despite claiming to be ultra lightweight, it's a bit heavier and bulkier than most (almost double the weight of the new iPad Mini) leading it to fail most in the looks department.
  • As mentioned, the screen is one of the main areas that highlights why this device is on the cheap side when it comes to tablets, and another thing aside from the PPI (pixels per inch) that really lets it down is that if you're not facing the tablet head on, the picture can be hard to see, so those expecting to watch a movie with you in the car will have to huddle in that little bit closer (this could be used to your advantage though in certain situations).
  • The audio is what you would expect from small home computer speakers or low end smartphones, so don't plan on using this with high end music apps expecting to be impressed. The sound is clear enough to play music and watch movies to a degree, but decent headphones would be a smart investment.
  • The Mini HDMI port as mentioned above may be a great feature, but the package does not include the cable so we didn't get to try it out. If you do wish to use this feature you're going to have to purchase your own Mini HDMI to HDMI cable. Don't go to the shops for this, some can be found on ebay for as little as £3 if you're savvy in your searching (try search Micro HDMI also).

Overall, we would personally probably rather save and pay the extra cash to get the most popular mini tablet out at the moment, mainly for overall build quality, the improved graphics, processor and audio etc but then we would be wanting it for more than just casual use. If you were buying this JoyTab for a young kid that keeps stealing your phone to play games, or if you were a casual browser that only uses the odd app such as Facebook, Twitter, Skype or Emails to catch up with friends etc then this is an ideal cheaper alternative. The cutbacks due to the price would be highly noticeable to someone who say, was brought a JoyTab as a replacement for their lost or broken iPad or Samsung Note, but to a first time tablet buyer on a budget, most wouldn't know better....until they experienced it.

The JoyTab also offers a Pro version which includes a Bluetooh keyboard (for those that hate typing on a touch screen) and is available from Argos for just £179 here.

Google's glasses, named Google Glass has got a new promo video showing what you will see when you wear the glasses.

It shows how in the top corner of your vision you will see videos/pictures you have taken, chats with friends etc and how the glasses work - on voice command.

Whether anyone will wear the glasses is debatable, the damage it will do to your eyes constantly looking up at something so close is also debatable however Google must be pretty confident we'll all want a pair as it's spending a fair amount of money on them.

Currently they look like something out of Star Trek which is probably a bad thing.

Google praises the simplicity of the glasses under their new video :

"Want to see how Glass actually feels? It's surprisingly simple. Say "take a picture" to take a picture. Record what you see, hands free. Even share what you see, live.
Directions are right in front of you. Speak to send a message, or translate your voice. Get the notifications that matter most. Ask whatever's on your mind and get answers without having to ask."

However why we need to wear something on our fasces (there is no suggestion of what people that actually need glasses will do if they are interested in Google Glass or what we'll do when we need sunglasses) that does exactly what our phones do but doesn't take phone calls is a little beyond us right now.

The other problem of making an item that is so hugely linked to fashion to everyones taste is also a sticking point with us, unless they decide to start custom glasses and farming out the tech.

We await to see more but for now you can see the video above.

Welcome to a world through Glass. See more at http://www.google.com/glass/start