About Ben Reid





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Ben has blogged 4254 post(s).

Posts by Ben Reid:

Apple’s Q2 FY14 earnings call on Wednesday revealed that the sales figures of certain products have not been as strong nor impressive as in previous years, with the iPad numbers in particular having faltered year-on-year. But given the growing number of competitors in both the tablet industry and the emerging “phablet” market, this is perhaps to be expected, and even the popularity of the all new iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina Display haven’t prevented sales of the Apple slab from dipping somewhat.

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Even though the initial announcement of the Galaxy S5 divided opinion among consumers and commentators alike, Samsung’s new flagship appears to have settled rather well into the market. As well as reports of strong early sales in the twelve days since the handset first hit stores, reviews have generally been favorable, with one of the device’s strong points being the full HD Super AMOLED display. But why is the new panel so great? Samsung has published a detailed blog post – complete with animated .gifs – explaining just what makes the new display so darned good.

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If you’re a frequenter of The Twitters, then you’ll almost certainly have encountered the new, revamped Twitter profile page. Some like it, some don’t, and if you’re subbed to the opinion of the former, then below, we’ll show you how you can switch to the new profile right now!

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Scratching around for the most suitable case is part and parcel of being a smartphone user, but while companies have established great reputations by delivering high quality, practical and protective guards for our digital devices in their daily battle against the elements, it doesn’t always have to be that serious. A new gaming-themed case for iPhone owners is a great example of what can happen when imaginations run wild, and the iDroid concept, based on a feature of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, looks a real treat for any MGS fan.

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Scarcely a day goes by without some kind of update on the state of the so-called iPhone 6, and one of our favorite designers has come through with an interesting concept that, based on various leaked info, shows how an “iPhone 6s” might stand up against an “iPhone 6c” if both current devices were upgraded.

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Following last year’s release of the Samsung Galaxy S4, its Korean maker released an abundance of spin-off devices, including the ruggedized Galaxy S4 Active and the camera-focused Galaxy S4 Zoom. Since the newly-released Galaxy S5 packs the former Active’s dust and waterproofing features as standard, we’re only anticipating the Galaxy S5 Zoom, or “Galaxy K” this time around, and a new, legitimate-looking leak showcases said handset’s 10x optical zoom lens.

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The Apple iPhone 5s may be approaching the latter months of its shelf-life, but even with tech column inches being dominated with speculation pertaining to its eventual successor, Apple is keen to reiterate to us the versatile nature of its current flagship. A new ad, entitled ‘Powerful,’ showcases just how useful the iPhone 5s can be in creating great music, videos, and even launching fireworks – a timely reminder that the device is not just for playing Candy Crush and Flappy Bird.

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The community propping up CyanogenMod, one of the most popular aftermarket firmware available to Android users, is expansive to say the least, and with hardware maker Oppo having teamed up last year with the CM team to build a handset packing the versatile, customizable software pre-loaded, Oppo’s spin-off company OnePlus appears to have taken things to the next level. The OnePlus One smartphone will run CyanogenMod 11S (based on Android 4.4) right off the bat, and with an impressive list of tech specs and a very agreeable price point, could prove a real hit with hack-minded consumers.

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To keep you guys up-to-date with the latest on iOS 8, the next major release of Apple’s mobile OS, we’ve created a quick checklist of everything we know so far.

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Apple has just rolled out iOS 7.1.1, and although the majority of the changes packed within the minor update are not particularly significant, one just-discovered addition will be more than welcomed by frequent downloaders of apps and games. For in the Featured and Top Charts sections of the App Store, any app or game featuring in-app purchases is now labeled as such, meaning a user will not get stung by constant micro-payments in order to progress through a title or unlock the key features within an app.

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Hitherto, those looking to test out beta releases of Apple’s OS X would need to sign up to the Developer Program, which, for $99 per year, looked quite a steep fee for the casual, inquisitive user. Now, however, the Cupertino company has introduced a new OS X Beta Seed Program, whereby users can test out pre-release builds of the Mac software simply by signing up with an Apple ID – no annual fee required.

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Google has just dropped version 0.5.0 of the MyGlass app for iPhone, which includes the ability for users to invite friends to join up to the Explorer Program, a new control Glass from screencast feature, as well as the usual assortment of bug fixes and general performance enhancements. Full details, as well as that all-important download link, can be seen right after the break!

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Over the weekend, it emerged that Nike was essentially closing off its FuelBand endeavors, laying off a large quantity of the project’s workforce in the process. Given the close relationship between Nike and Apple, and with the so-called iWatch on the horizon, there was always going to be a conflict of interests, but with Nike having calmed its project down to a virtual halt, the stage looks set for the iWatch to launch. However, a new report suggests that Nike and Apple are to collaborate in the creation of an apparently separate “smart band,” which will feature gesture controls and supposedly launch in the fall.

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The Samsung Galaxy S5 has sold well during its first week-and-a-half in the retail market, and its maker’s famed advertising machine, which has been in full flow once again, must take a fair amount of the credit for these strong early sales. In its latest campaign, the Korean company shows off the ruggedized nature of its latest humdinger, offering insight into its water and dust-proofing capabilities.

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Apple has just released iOS 7.1.1 download links for compatible iPhone, iPad and iPod touch devices. Therein, you’ll find minor bug fixes and performance enhancements, and below, you can check all of the details including a full change log.

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A short while ago, Google took the wraps off Android Wear, a smartwatch-tailored version of its famed mobile operating system, and at the time of announcement, several initial manufacturing partners were outlined. Among those listed was Korean outfit LG, which swiftly came through and showcased its G Watch, and although information pertaining to the device’s technical specs has been scarce, the company has now come through and outlined some of the key features of its very first entry into this growing field.

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Earlier on in the year, it was reported that Apple would be coming through with two variants of the so-called “iPhone 6.” Both, it was claimed, would be larger, with a 4.7-inch model accompanying a version packing an almighty 5.5-inch panel. But in recent times, we’ve heard that the greater of the two iPhone 6 configurations was subject to delay thanks to possible issues with production and yield. Now, a conflicting theory has manifested, suggesting that the redesigned, thinner battery for the 5.5-inch variant is causing issue.

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Apple and Samsung are currently contesting a patent battle in a California court, with the Cupertino company convinced that its Korean counterpart has lifted certain copyrighted iOS features. Given that Samsung already lost in court versus Apple and was forced to pay over a billion dollars in compensation in a previous judgment – a decision that was later reduced on appeal – it’s fair to say that the Galaxy maker has developed a bit of a reputation, and in its latest ad campaign, Apple seems to be reveling in it.

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Google is always looking to update and improve its Android operating system, and while often, these changes can take the form of significant enhancements, the Big G also likes to make subtle adjustments that enhance the user interface. Just last week, a leaked screenshot gave us a potential insight into some icon adjustments set to arrive with the much talked-about Android 4.5, and now, the official Google Nexus Twitter handle has accidentally leaked a modified, bluer Dialer app.

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The iPhone 6 seems to be the subject of a new leak or piece of information almost every day, and with so many reports flying about, it can be rather difficult to keep abreast of what’s going on. Here, we try to establish a little coherence with a brief run-through of what we think we know so far.

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