Terminator Voice packs are Free on Waze App for Android and iOS.

landscape-1428935780-terminator-genisys-arnold-smile Google owned Waze is probably one of those navigation apps that people often try to avoid using since it is an online app without offline access. But Waze begs to differ by having Arnie as a voice talent in the backseat guiding you in Waze. That’s right folks the Guvanator is back and he’s got a load for you.

To have him on Waze, all you have to do is download and run Waze, go to Settings>Sounds > hit the ‘ English US or UK’ and you’d be taken to a selection of voices you can download. Within the list you will find Terminator Genisys and that’s what you want.

This movie tie in is one of a kind as Arnie narrates his way to your destination and even says “Hasta la vista, Baby” once you arrive at your intended destination.

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During the movie debut, Terminator logos will be popping up in your Waze map to indicate cinemas and multiplexes, though I am not sure if that would include cinemas ‘not showing’ the movie when it launches.

This latest installment of the Terminator franchise will only make its debut in the US in July while the rest of the world will catch it before then.

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The iPhone 6 is far from perfect, is this the cure?

61b5eaddeadfb43a6e92ba5fb000345d_originalThe iPhone 6+ has poor battery life because Jony Ive thinks it should have a smaller battery to save on weight. Personally, I think he fibbed. A larger battery would have cost more and eat into Apple profits.

This is probably why these folks from China are thinking of improving it with an Evol iPhone 6+ camera case that does so much more. The pitch on Kickstarter sounds great. The concept explains it all.

  • Extended battery built as a Modular Add on
  • Extra SIM card access as a Modular Add on
  • Second camera for 3D Photo imaging as a Modular Add on
  • MagSafe Power recharging dock
  • External Storage of up to 64GB more with Modular Add on

80465084c8e2b0e530ab635b969b3c80_originalThese modular add ons can only be used on their Evol concept iPhone 6+ casing. Ok, they have the add on lenses but I never thought much about the external lenses since you can already get them from a host of other vendors.

The iPhone 6 is not supported, only the + model because it needs the extra real estate to mount this modular add ons.

What these folks are offering a consumer centric needs and not Apple needs. Remember the Apple Pay *BS about helping you pay more securely? Apple just wants to get into the banking business of managing your money that’s all.

Everything that Apple is introducing onto iOS only makes business sense and do not cater to consumer requirements for a more personal device as opposed to just another smartphone. Because that’s what the iPhone has devolved into, just another Smartphone.

Why did iOS 9 look so much like Android Lollipop? Didn’t they think they had a chance by doing better than that? Apparently not. Apple is so far behind in this. Remember the Xiaomi model of business, the older the technology, the bigger the hardware margins over time to create¬† the device. Why is storage still so expensive on the iPhone? Why do you keep having apps that crash because of RAM availability even though they say it won’t happen? Nah, it cost too much to add that and Apple wants to milk more money from users with older tech.

Evol is probably jumping far ahead by offering a whole themepark of add ons which I think are great, but to Apple, that’s like stealing their business.

18623a33ed8441e527539e9023d4c251_originalTo be fair, Evol should be given a chance. Even four out of six features that make it to the Evol casing would make it infinitely more usable, and extending the product life of the iPhone 6+. Oh wait, Apple wants you to upgrade every year to a new device. Will this fly?

LG Pocket Printer Review: A cheaper Alternative to Instax Mini?

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I rarely print my photos these days as everything is shared digitally but there will come a time when having a printed pictures will matter. So what’s the option if you are on the road traveling? Should you go to one of those print kiosk found in shopping malls or carry a portable printer?

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Canon makes a slew of portable printers capable of 4R or postcard size prints. But these are still pretty expensive and bulky to carry around. Your best bet if you want to go fully digital is the LG Zink inspired pocket printer….or if you want to go analogue, the Fujifilm SP-1.

Price wise, there is some difference. The SP-1 retails for US$145 while the LG PD239 goes for a little less at US$120. The real difference is in the cost of operation, with the Fuji instax mini film costing US$83 for a 100 sheets while the LG Pocket Printer’s Zink paper weighing in at US$57 for 120 sheets.

in terms of paper size both are just a tad smaller than the average business card aspect ratio, the Fuji Instax mini is larger but the printed area is really much smaller thanks largely to the format’s border. So with the LG, you not only get a larger printed area but a full bleed right to the edge as well.

Needless to say the winner is clearly the LG Zink formatted print.

Quality of Print

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Here is the trick. For some reason, the LG printer has a tendency to print images which are about one EV lower in brightness than what you see on your digital device. To get a brighter picture, you need to print the photo with a adjusted setting via the iOS or Android app. This is not a huge problem but it pays to know as every print wasted is going to cost you.

16444173791_df90ea1273_bThe LG Pocket Printer is a pretty simple in design and operation. There are no confusing buttons to play with as everything is Bluetooth enabled. If you have an NFC enabled device, it will work too.

The operation from editing to firmware updates are carried out via the mobile app.

Real World Appeal

This is where I have problems with the print size. It’s really doesn’t quite justify the appeal even if your photos look great. The business card sized print is probably a good way to share a business contact or print out pictures for your scrap book. Beyond that, I can really find a good enough reason to buy or use one.

16419934556_6611b3754f_bI think Zink has done a pretty good job with the printer and the quality of the print. The colors, clarity and sharpness is good for any physical sharing of photos but the practicality of the whole exercise remains to be seen.

You could of course create lots of small prints for decorative use on any wall or door. And if you want something better than that, I can’t think of anything.

The LG Pocket Printer has its own battery good enough for about an hour of use and you can charge it via any microUSB cable with a battery pack.

If you travel far, it is probably a good way to share your photos with the people around you who are not on the Internet or have no access to such technologies. To me, this doesn’t happen often enough to warrant having one.

Zink has partnered with the likes of Polaroid to come out with Android related camera+printer but the same problem will arise when you start using it. Because of its relatively small size, images of wide open vistas, architecture or anything taken with a wide angle view cannot be appreciated. The print size works best with subjects either close up of at medium distance. So if you do have an immediate use for such small prints, it makes good sense to get one but for everyone else, it will sit on the corner table gathering dust until someone digs it up again.

To Print or not to Print?

Nice to have but I can’t think of a reason to carry one with me all the time. How you wish to use this is really up to you. The personal printer with a format this small is ideal for scrapbook making. No problem with you sticking the print outs onto your Moleskine pads with double sided tape.

Beyond this, you could give away those prints to strangers who do selfies with you.

In the digital age, printing something just doesn’t make much sense. You can send a virtual postcard instead of snail mailing them like in the past and post your images to Facebook for sharing with the people in your network.

The quality of the Zink print is pretty good, but I have no idea if they would last a life time as the colors could fade. Only time will tell if this is going to be worth your investment.

Google Photos to offer infinite storage for your photos and video

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That’s right. Flickr is so screwed when Google announced that the new feature coming to Google Photos is going to give you an unlimited back up of all your photos. Even Star Trek fans got stumped with their ‘space; the final frontier’ motto on this one and for good reason.

For years, Facebook detractors have been saying that Google+ was doomed to die. They weren’t very far off from this but somehow this has changed as the shake up at G+ gave life to a digital corpse. The old hats running G+ were fucking idiots. They didn’t have a plan or strategy to out run the cross hairs of Facebook.

True. G+ is not FB and FB isn’t G+.

Technically speaking, both use the same model to make money off you. By getting you to use their service, you become a candidate for targeted advertising.

Google Photos came automatically installed on your Android device with G+ app. This was inherently stupid of course but Google Photos had some nice functionality to it. The auto back up feature and auto-awesome gif images were nice additional features but come on, G+ like FB app were storage hogs on both iOS and Android devices. Picture wise, Google had to outgun the old FB and this they have done in style.

Facebook and G+ apps are big on storage. Don’t believe me, go do the maths on your storage requirement an you’ll notice that they are not only fat and bloated but offer little else in return for your digital needs. Google’s new Photos app is only moveable to internal storage of your Android device so that precious RAM can be saved for G+.

Facebook does none of these and even scales down your high resolution images so they never get stored in their original form.

Google Photos and DNG File Format

While iOS is still stuck in the stone age of JPG, Google has advanced its computational photography capabilities to include DNG files on its future camera app. Google is thinking in the line that if a picture can be processed better, then it can be a better picture for anything from Bokeh to Photo Spheres. Google Drive already supports TIFF files, a fact not known to many. When uploading your DNG files from your web browser, you can choose where it goes….to the infinite cloud space or the limited one as in Google Drive.

slide8b_framedSaving pictures in DNG is going to take a lot of space. Ask any Trekkie and they will tell you what all this amounts to. When Google said that it would give you photo back up….infinitely….you can technically put your Android device to upload all those pictures you have taken in the day through WIFI to Google cloud storage. You can also access Google Photos on the web.

And when you wake up from your deep slumber in the morning, those photos on your Android device and be erased as a copy already exist in the cloud.

Google’s cloud is impressive to say the least and is far cheaper than the image cloud service provided by Apple. Thankfully, you still have Google Photos for iOS so Apple users aren’t at a loss.

Google Stories

This is another advantage which few talk about. Google Stories is a scrap booking feature for you to create a flipbook slideshow of your images right within the Google Photos app. And that’s not all, like Flickr, your chosen photos can also be shared with a long list of other social networks.

Photos-Share-v4Google Photos is a new app for Android and you can download it here.