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Have a vision for the perfect App, a laptop and some comfy clothes for a marathon coding session? Well, that’s all the weapons needed to register and attend the world’s largest App Fest for Windows 8, which kicks off on Sept 21-22, 2012 at the KTPO, Bangalore and is open to the entire highly talented developer community in India and across the globe. Participants can register themselves at http://www.microsoft.com/india/events/win8Appfest/default.aspx. This coding Olympics for developers will be an 18 hours, non-stop software jam with the opportunity to design, build, test and submit Apps with the help of special Microsoft mentors from all over the world and technical engineers on hand to support the process of submitting an App for Windows 8.  Submitting an App has never been easier!

Windows 8 represents the biggest opportunity for developers ever; Windows 8 has already proven to be the most eagerly anticipated Microsoft operating system of all time, with over 1 million downloads of the consumer preview in the first 24 hours of its availability.

Bhaskar Pramanik, Chairman, Microsoft India said, “We are very excited to invite the very talented developer community to the Windows 8 AppFest, the Olympics for Developers. The AppFest will be a memorable and unique opportunity to mingle with Microsoft engineers, programming specialists, trainers, and industry-recognized app developers to drive innovation globally. We at Microsoft are creating an environment and platform that offers the biggest opportunity in history for developers to seize and lead innovation by building successful applications on Windows platform.”

Microsoft’s aim is to provide the gifted and technically skilled developer community with the perfect supportive environment to drive path –breaking innovation globally. The Windows 8 platform opens up for the developers the largest opportunity in history to shape the Apps ecosystem around one core operating system across multiple devices and hardware formats,  giving developers the chance to maximize their revenue with little or no tweaking. Windows 8 also works seamlessly across multiple coding languages and devices thereby making it not only a very flexible base to build on, but also the preferred platform/first choice of platform to build apps.

Developers will have the option of submitting Apps in over 20 categories ranging from food, finance productivity, books, social, photo, music and video and shopping. To support developers in their journey from turning a dream into a download, onsite staff will be available to assist Windows 8 AppFest participants with preparing their apps for eventual submission to the Windows Store. Microsoft brings the best global minds across every stage of the development process: be it design or technical support and help developers through a series of quality checks in addition to discussing techniques to make the app even better.

The Release to Manufacturing (RTM) version of Windows 8 will be made available to developers attending the Apps Fest for Windows 8, who will also have the option of bring their own team of a total of 4 people to build Apps. This gives developers early access to prepare Apps and products for the Windows 8 global launch. The Windows 8 App Fest is therefore an international opportunity, for developers to build their Apps, which will then be available for download across the world through the Windows 8 marketplace

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password protect bookmarks in chrome

Bookmarking is the way to save the important links on the browser for further visit. Almost all modern web browser support this feature. But Bookmarks accessible to all the users using your browser. Sometimes we do not want to show our saved links to all the persons. In this case, either we not links to another file or try to remember the website. Save links to another file is easy but not remembering.

For solving this problem, I will suggest you to use password to protect your bookmarks. If a user want to see the bookmark, Chrome will ask for the password. Now you can share your computer to any person without fearing of bookmark disclosure.

But how to add password to Bookmark because Google Chrome does not support for this feature? To add the password protect to bookmarks, you will have to install an extension called Secure Bookmark.

Secure bookmark Password protect Chrome Bookmarks

Go to Google Chrome Webstore and install Secure Bookmark extension to your browser. After installation, you will see a star icon in omni bar. Clicking on this icon for fist time will take you to a new page where you can set the password.

password protect bookmarks in chrome

When you wish to save bookmark in the password protected list, click on the star icon and then create a new bookmark button. Now save links to the list. Drag and drop also works for changing the location of a link in the list.

Secure bookmark

You will see three icons just above the list which can be used to perform some specific tasks.

  • First icon is for deleting the link from the list.
  • Second icon is for visiting the settings page
  • Third icon will sign off the extension and hide the list from other user.

Whenever you are going to give your system to other user, you should use sign off button to hide this list from other users. So next time when someone tries to access the bookmark list created by this extension, it will ask for the password.

Login to access Bookmarks

There is one important thing you must know about this extension is that there is no way for password recovery in this extension. So you must remember your password otherwise you will have to reset the extension and you will lose all your saved links.

This extension also works in incognito mode. But you need to allow this extension for incognito mode. For this go to Tools and then in extension tabs, Find Secure Bookmarks. Now, Tick the ‘Allow in incognito’ checkbox.

This is a guest post by Deepankar from TricksNDTricks. If you would like to write for CallingAllGeeks, check our guest posting guidelines.

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Riptide GP

I’m huge Apple fan boy and I love the crispy clear display of iPad. When it comes to watching videos, reading or even better playing Games on iPad screen, there is no match to it. With the amazing Touch and screen quality, you will not only be glued to screen for hours, but you will find it hard to leave your iPad away. There are unlimited free iPad games out there in the market and some of them are highly addictive. Doesn’t matter if you are a kid or you are an adult, these games are something that will keep you addicted.

We have already covered many paid and free iPad games before, and if you have missed them, check out below links to find new games for your iPad:

5 free yet engaging games for iPad.

So, lets start with another series of games for your iPad, which are not only addictive but are free too.

1. RipTide GP

Addictive iPad game

I would say that this is the best game that I have played on my iPad so far. The graphics are just stunning and the gameplay seems almost like what we experience in a gaming arena. The user plays the role of a jet ski surfer and can take a wild ride through the number of rivers & canals, ultimately attempting to out speed the other players. The game offers plenty of challenges in the form of various obstacles, and players can perform a variety of jaw dropping stunts as well. The game includes Retina support on iPhone 4S and iPad as well.

[Download]

2. Air Hockey Gold

Air Hockey Gold

For those of you who like to stop by gaming parlours and try your hands on the popular Air Hockey machines there, you would surely have a wonderful time getting the same entertainment right on your iPad. Unlike the free air hockey games available on the Android platform, this one is much more visually soothing and the graphics are quite realistic as well. It almost feels like you are playing the actual game on a real table. The best part is that apart from playing with a computer opponent, you can also make use of the multiplayer option and compete with your friend! This game has the potential to provide fun for hours on the go. Probably that’s why it’s rated as one of the best sporting titles for iPad.

[Download]

3. 10 Pin Shuffle (Bowling) Lite

10 Pin Shuffle (Bowling) Lite

With over 4 million downloads so far, 10 Pin Shuffle is easily the best bowling game on the iOS platform. Boasting enhanced high detail graphics and an impressive gameplay with shiny chrome weights, shadows and reflections, this game almost makes players get hooked onto it and believe me, once that happens, you’ll find it difficult to stop playing it! Also one of the USP’s of this game is its simplicity as all you need to do in order to get the ball rolling is just pick up the ball and flick it. Various animation rewards, sound effects and crowd reactions are also something that make this game worth playing.

[Download]

4. Hit Tennis 2

Hit-Tennis 2

Probably one of the most popular games on the iTunes market with over 13 million downloads, Hit Tennis 2 certainly packs a punch when it comes to providing hours of fun on the go. The game lets you use your fingers to hit the ball just like you do in real tennis by swiping across the screen to swing the racket. As a player, you can move up in the tennis circuit in the game from Club to Pro by defeating the various computer opponents. The best part is that you can even play it with your friends thanks to the 2 player split-screen mode!

[Download]

5. Hungry Shark – Part 1 HD

Hungry Shark Part 1 HD

A rather gory yet exciting game where you get to control a shark in the Antarctic and have the goal of satisfying its appetite by feeding it with fishes and humans, ultimately helping it become the most formidable predator of the seas. This game is undeniably addictive and simple to play yet it requires quick thinking and action on the part of the player. This is one of the few games that I continually play and the excitement almost never seems to go away! You can literally play this game for hours without ever getting bored. There are also various achievements that can be unlocked by completing 10+ challenges. And when you think you’ve had enough of it, you can download some of the other parts of this game which are equally thrilling and have loads of fun to offer!

[Download]

Do let us know which of these addictive iPad games you have played? If you would like to suggest any other premium or free iPad games for others, do suggest us via comments.

This is a guest post by Harshit from Tablet Reviews Today. If you would like to write for CallingAllgeeks, check our guest post submission guidelines.

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SmartTV

Samsung Smart TVIf you are one of those smart tech geek, who like to keep yourself updated, you must have heard about Samsung Smart TV, which is their new range of TV launched in 2012. So what makes it special? Do you think the price tag of $3000+ worth your had earned money? Every new range of TV, be it from LG, Sony are coming with Internet ready and it’s not enough. That’s where Samsung Smart TV’s come into the picture. Here I’m not doing a review of any of their Smart series TV’s but talking about some of the features, which will make their TV stand out from others and why you can consider buying one for yourself.

Features of Samsung Smart TV’s

Smart TV’s from Samsung not only offers elegant design but offers much more in terms of features. With its Ultra panel feature, you don’t need to worry about light reflection. This is specially a problem, when you have plenty of sunlight in your room and become an obstruction in getting a clear picture out of your TV. Anyways, lets directly jump into some of the features of Samsung Smart TV’s:

1. Comprehensive phone/tablet to TV Integration

The Samsung Smart TV can link up with your Samsung Galaxy II or III or Samsung Galaxy TAB by means of the Smart View App. Your portable device will now function not only as a remote control for you TV but also, through the Dual View feature, as a medium by which you can watch your favourite shows, cheer on your team or stream on demand content via a wifi link to your TV.

The AllShare function also means that it no longer matters where you store your media files. With this app, you can instantly stream videos from your Samsung Galaxy TAB or phone on you Galaxy Smart TV – a great way to show friends and family videos or photos.

2. Social Media Capabilities

Samsung have included more comprehensive browsing capacities with specific social media apps linking you from the ‘Smart Hub’ to social sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Above and beyond that though, is the Social TV App. Using this app moves the television which is being streamed to a box on the left hand side, freeing up space for your private Facebook and Twitter feeds on the right. This feature is ideal if you like to keep you friends and followers up to date with breaking news or offer commentary on a great show that you’re watching.

3. Keeping in Touch

Not only does the Samsung Smart TV offer social networking opportunities, but also incorporates the free, preloaded Skype app. With a built-in camera, you can now video chat with all your friends and family on this crisp LCD TV, making sure that you stay in touch with the most important people in your life in life-size high-definition. The Samsung camera has 4 analog microphones, HD video and auto focussing, ensuring crystal clear video feed.

4. Stream Content On Demand

Although not an entirely novel addition in the world of smart TVs, being able to watch television that you have missed, when you want to, is still a great attribute of this Samsung product. Compatible with 4OD, BBC iPlayer and 5Demand to name but a few, with your Samsung Smart TV you’ll now never lose touch of the programmes which you love and with the 4OD Classics feature, the ones that you used to love.

5. Recording TV

If you’re rushed for time, or busy during the weekly of your beloved programme, then this TV will solve your problems. With both one off recording for those interesting documentaries or series record for the addictive crime thrillers, you can remain assured that you’ll never miss anything – maintaining complete loyalty to those great shows at the touch of a button. Though this is similar feature, which you get in almost all the Set top boxes now-a-days.

These smart TV’s are never generation of TV and with the internet evolving every day, movie and program on demand have become next viewer requirement, Social integration is must, and Skype video calling let you take advantage of staying in touch from your couch, Samsung Smart TV might be the best fit for you. Along with it, if you are using any Samsung tablet, Smartphone you will love to have a Samsung TV instead of any other, to make most out of it. Here is a quick features review of Samsung Smart TV, which will give you better idea and details:

Before you decide on purchase, I recommend you to read following expert reviews on Samsun Smart Tv series:

So are you planning to get one of these smart TV’s from Samsung? Do share your opinion and views? 
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samsung galaxy note

Samsung’s latest Galaxy Note model (not the prospective Galaxy Note 2 that is rumored to be released later on this year) is the subject of debate among tablet enthusiasts: has it improved? There are a lot of tablets making their rounds in the consumer market today, but only a select few are actually worth their price. Samsung is well known for its mobile phones and smartphones, but their Galaxy Note tablet is their initial foray into the tablet world.

Not quite a stretch, perhaps, as some people would say, as the company’s Galaxy Tab lines are already getting larger and larger—almost too unwieldy, at that. But there’s a difference between a smartphone and a tablet, and that is how much functionality you can put in for its size. As we all know, tablets have to deliver more.

Can Samsung’s Galaxy Note 10.1 deliver more than its previous versions did?

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 Specifications

The Galaxy Note 10.1 runs on a 1.4GHz quad core Samsung Exynos processor, with 2GB of RAM, which is the same amount of RAM you get on a basic laptop. That promises some good processing speed at least, and that is important for people who would be using it for business – say, for using the app of their business voip provider or for managing their company while out of the office.

It has 16 to 32GB of storage, which wouldn’t be enough for people who are used to Apple’s larger storage sizes, but just enough for people who just want a mobile computing or media gadget that isn’t a laptop or a netbook. But users who may be looking for more storage space will be glad to know that, while the internal storage is limited, the Note accepts SD cards up to 64GB in size.

The build of the Note is slim and light, has a 10.1 inch LCD display (the average screen size of a netbook), with a 1280 by 720 display dimension. Samsung has engineered it to be not too heavy to carry with one hand, and to be not too unwieldy, although some claim that note-taking when using it like a notepad may be better done when the Note is held vertically

Great features of Note 10.1

One of the interesting features of the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 is its split screen multitasking. In contrast to other tablets, this mobile device no longer confines you to a single display. This is especially vital again for businessmen who might want to use the internet for research while noting things down. He could be watching a relevant video presentation and taking note, or listing down important information needed later. Artists can even put an image they need for reference as they work on the image in a different part of the screen.

Another added perk is the added Samsung S-Pen (the stylus) which has been modified since it was last seen. The eraser end of the stylus has been removed, and it is now able to slide neatly into the rear side of the Note when it isn’t in use (prior versions did not have this feature). Verge has done a great pros and cons review of Samsung S-pen.

Unboxing & Video review of Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1

Here are some of the unboxing and video review of Note 10.1, which will give you more detail about this new beast from Samsung:

Are you planning to get yourself a Samsung Note 10.1? I would recommend have a look at other options in the same range, as despite of this tablet is full of feature but with a price tag of $499 you can always expect something more. The camera is not up to the mark, which makes video calling experience not so great. Samsung has modified Android 4.0 to work with it’s Touchwiz technology, which they have done earlier in Samsung Galaxy S I90, which makes it good for Samsung fanboys but for a typical android user, it’s not going to be a gala experience.

Do let us know your opinion and review of Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1? How likely you are going to buy this tablet and how likely you going to give it a thumbs down?

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dropbox vs Google drive vs box

Even though cloud storage market is almost completely populated at this moment, Dropbox, Google Drive and Box seem to be the biggest players in the race. Different providers might offer various features but these three remain synonyms for cloud storage.

dropbox vs Google drive vs boxFeatures that all cloud storage services have in common are: folder syncing across multiple devices, file sharing and online backup. Pricing plans and storage space differ from provider to provider and it becomes increasingly difficult to choose only one of them. However, these three big names seem to constantly be in the race. I’m not including Skydrive from Microsoft for now and will be covering it at later stage, when Windows 8 will officially launched the final version. For now, lets quickly look into some of the features of Dropbox, box and Google drive.

Dropbox Vs. Google Drive vs Box cloud storage:

Dropbox:

Dropbox is the leading consumer-oriented cloud storage with 50 million registered users. This number is mostly reached through its referral program – 500 MB bonus storage in free account and 1 GB in premium accounts for each new user that accepts your invite. This was basically the word of mouth marketing for Dropbox. Its simple interface and intuitive features were enough to gain users’ attention, especially among those that are not particularly tech savvy. The simplicity is probably the most notable feature of Dropbox, but this doesn’t mean it’s poor in functions.

The best thing about Skydrive is their huge user base and it supports multiple platform. Being one of the popular and oldest cloud storage here, they have a huge advantage but now with launch of Google drive and skydrive, and leaked Dropbox password, we can expect other free cloud storage services to take a leap.

Sign up for Dropbox

Google Drive:

Google Drive’s adoption was very smooth among Gmail users. It somehow came as the missing piece of a puzzle for those who were using Gmail and Google Docs for years. Though it entered cloud storage race quite late, Google Drive was able to gain plenty of faithful users. In the first 48h after launch it reached 5 million downloads.

By the end of June that number doubled. Even though it was long rumored that GDrive would be Dropbox killer, it actually didn’t take over many Dropbox users. Rather, it remained the choice of faithful Google fans because of its excellent integration with G Docs and Gmail. If you are an iPad user, you will love to use Google drive on it. It might take little time to get use to Google drive, but by converting docs.google.com to Google drive, Google got their initial user base without any sweat.  If you have not yet started with Google drive, you can quickly grab a free account from here using your existing Google login.

BOX:

Box cannot actually be compared to these two because its focus is mostly enterprise market. Box is a big name with more than 11 million users and 120,000 businesses and this number continues to grow. Box constantly improves its services and seeks new ways to penetrate different markets. Recently they announced opening the offices in Europe and enhanced collaboration with the partners – they introduced free storage on HP desktops and assigned free Box accounts to LG Android device buyers. But what exactly makes Box enterprise market favorite? Though their free account is obviously poor with features, the premium accounts allow creating online workspaces by syncing any folder with contents, comments and discussions, task assignment and many others. Besides this they have a great pro pricing plan.

You can also check out Pingdom comparison of Dropbox vs Google drive vs box vs Skydrive here.

All three big companies have different weapons to conquer particular segments of the market. It is expected that Gmail users would prefer Google Drive, but the real battle is for the platform agnostic ones. As more users start moving to the cloud their expectations from the services grow. Even though all providers give their best to improve their services it is still hard to announce a single winner.

This is a guest post by Bojana from Encrypted file storage, if you would like to write for CallingAllGeeks, check our guest posting guidelines.

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lg ideacamp

lg ideacampLG Electronics, a global giant in modern technology and mobile communications, has launched an innovative campaign by the name ‘Smartphone Idea Camp’. This campaign is a ‘consumers connect’ initiative which would be conducted online. During the campaign, LG would invite consumers to submit unique app, feature, concept, service, design, UI ideas that they desire in their phones. The best ideas would get incorporated in LG’s future smartphone line-up and also win prize value of Rs. 15, 00,000.

The 2 month long campaign, which kick-starts today encourages tech enthusiasts to share their innovative app feature concept, service, design, UI ideas on www.lg.com/in/smartphoneideacamp.jsp. The contest would be open to all Indian residents, and the entries would be evaluated on the basis of imagination, creativity and utility.

“We at LG firmly believe in constant innovation and this contest allows our consumers to showcase their creativity and talent. The Smartphone Idea Camp is an excellent way to gain inspiration from the imagination of the mobile phone users and tech enthusiasts. It helps us gain a better understanding of the demands and desires of our consumers and gives us a first-hand insight into their minds. For dynamic products like mobile phones, it is extremely important for us to be in direct contact with our consumers in order to understand what exactly they are looking for and, therefore, add value to their lives”, says Sanjay Maheshwary, Business Head, Mobile Communications, LG India.

Today, smartphones have come a long way from where they started out. The hi-tech smartphones allow consumers to multi-task with unbelievable ease. Quad core processors, cloud gaming and GPS enabled search engines are the latest rages in the mobile world. Near Field Communications is another technology that is all set to take the mobile market by storm by this year. The umpteen features and innumerable apps that come pre-loaded with the smartphones also help make consumers’ lives easier.

The consumers too have changed rapidly, with more people now opting for a smartphone than a basic feature phone. The smartphone market is growing at an incredible pace, and a large chunk of the consumers now use their smartphones to surf the net, book air tickets, play games and watch 3D videos. The changing perceptions and the rising consumer demands is a constant motivation for smartphone makers to innovate.

The advent of social media has completely shifted marketing trends and it is getting increasingly important for companies to have better connect with consumers through such platforms rather than simply spending millions on mass media. Consumer connect initiatives help companies reach out to a wider set of audience in an intimate way and keep pace with the fast changing demands and needs of the consumers.

Today, a brand is judged not only by the services offered by them but also by the initiatives taken by them to bond with their consumers. LG understands that as a company it cannot confine itself to its corporate space but must reach out to their consumers. Smartphone Idea Camp is one such initiative by LG to fashion a bond with their consumers, and take their help in developing something unique.

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Twitter Addiction

Twitter is perhaps the most addictive social network. Your whole Twitter feed can change in a matter of seconds – and who knows what will happen if you’re not there to RT @KourtneyKardash’s announcement that she’s finally popped out the latest addition to the most horrendous family on Earth?
Twitter Addiction

Whereas posting a Tweet an hour used to be considered excessive, nowadays it’s merely considered healthy contribution to the Twittersphere. But how do you know if you’re Tweeting a little too much? How do you know when your “healthy contribution” is, in reality, morphing into addiction?

Believe it, you have Twitter Addiction!

If any of these 25 signs of Twitter addiction strike a chord with you, you might want to seek professional help immediately.

  1. You will one day find and kill the person that got to your rightful Twitter name before you. Damn you @JamesDuval…
  2. You are the sole reason Twitter got blocked at your workplace.
  3. You cried when you realised what your boss had done, until you remembered that you have a smartphone.
  4. You repeatedly stall amusing conversations with the sentence “I need to Tweet this!”
  5. Whenever you post an amazing Tweet and no one RTs you, you spend a full 24 hours contemplating if life is worth living anymore.
  6. You did quit Twitter for a day… only to be overcome by a migraine, shivers, sweats and heart palpitations.
  7. You pray for red lights whenever you drive. #tailgatingdouche
  8. You consider Tweeting a justifiable reason for stopping on double yellow lines.
  9. The first thing you ask any new acquaintance is “What’s your Twitter?
  10. The first few times someone answered “I don’t have an account” you tried not to pass out. Now, you just leave the room – I mean, what’s the point in people if they’re not on Twitter?
  11. Your social circle has reduced dramatically after you insisted that if your friends aren’t Tweeps, they’re no friends at all.
  12. You Tweet questions rather than Google them – you get better advice that way, right…?
  13. You will tell your grandkids about the time @MissAmyChilds Tweeted you back.
  14. With news, your rule is: If it’s not on Twitter, it’s not true.
  15. You sink into a depression every time someone unfollows you.
  16. You clean out inactive or boring people on a daily basis – who wants to follow someone who Tweets about their food, man.
  17. You’ve developed a newfound love for potato waffles due to their resemblance to hashtags. #hashtagwaffles
  18. Your signature is now preceded by an @.
  19. You suggested “Twitter blue” as the colour for the walls when your company was moving office.
  20. You synced your Twitter to Facebook and are now left with one friend – your mum. And that’s only because she doesn’t know how to unfriend.
  21. You don’t really care about your demise on Facebook as it’s not Twitter.
  22. You’ve had the @ and # keys on your phone, laptop and work computer replaced at least once.
  23. You’ve broken the law to get a TwitPic.
  24. You do a better job than most paparazzi at stalking celebrities, and can recite the hourly whereabouts of your ten favourite.
  25. You’ve already shared this on Twitter.

Well, I’m sure if you love Twitter, you will have more tips to find people who have twitter addiction. Ahh, and don’t forget to check Pt. 25 again and follow us on Twitter @Callingallgeeks.

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Spice View D

When Dilip Modi, Managing Director of Spice Mobility, recently told reporters that the company wants to be the “Apple of Asia”, the message was well and truly on the board. Spice Global, Spice Mobility’s holding company, owns a huge range of interests in sectors as varied as retail, telecom and cinema infrastructure. The conglomerate is known for its catchy marketing and innovative ventures. In line with this image, the mobile division has been an active part of the Indian phone market, known for its low-cost offerings and distinctive features.

Spice mobility

With Spice Mobility’s shift of focus to mobile Internet being announced in May 2012, the company’s vision is well-outlined. They wish to continue producing handsets at remarkably affordable costs, while also bringing to the table the wealth of the mobile web. The story of Spice is a story of success; here is a look at the company’s many milestones in the Indian phone industry.

Spice View D

Spice View D

New and unique ideas and pocket-friendly solutions

Ever since its inception, Spice has had a single-point agenda: being an Indian innovator. Their list of firsts in India is a lengthy one, and this includes the telecom and mobile sector, some of its achievements in which are detailed below

  • First to launch cellular services: The Modi Telstra MobileNet, a brainchild of Dilip Modi, was India’s first cellular service, launched in 1995 in Calcutta. A major milestone was created when the West Bengal Chief Minister made India’s first phone call from a cell, setting the precedent for the sector’s massive growth in the following years. Spice Mobility later sold this section of their operations to Idea Cellular.
  • First to offer 3D mobile phone: In October 2010, Spice beat bigwigs such as Samsung and Motorola to launch India’s first 3D-capable phone. The View D offered the user an option to switch between 3D and 2D modes. It also had a unique feature called Remote Wipe, in which the phone’s data could be deleted remotely, thus enhancing phone security in the event of theft or loss. Initially available for Rs. 4299, the View D was a definite catch.
  • First to introduce dual-mode QWERTY: With the QT-95, Spice finally brought a dual mode QWERTY phone to Indian shores. Users had a choice to toggle between 3G and 2G, depending on their data requirements. The QT-68 was launched simultaneously, and it was India’s first phone dedicated to social networking. The QT-95 was priced a little above Rs. 5000, and its younger sister a little below, making them both immensely pocket-friendly.
  • First to launch dual-mode Android: Continuing its foray into dual-mode technologies, Spice launched the Mi-350in late 2011. The Mi-350 is India’s first Android phone with dual-mode capabilities. The price of this model has been oscillating in the sub-10,000 INR range, which makes it one of the most lucrative Android devices floating on Indian store-shelves.

    Spice-Mi350

    Spice-Mi350

From the phone prices mentioned above, it becomes unquestionable that Spice Mobility is dedicated to the Indian middle-class, making sure that each of their products is well within an average Indian phone user’s reach. In the form of their own attractive Java-based operating systems such as that in the FLO TV, and now Android (upgradable in the most recent models to 4.0), the software offered by Spice is top-class, and the hardware is, in many cases, a revelation. In this regard, the S-1200 comes to mind. Much before Nokia’s N8 came out; Spice introduced the S-1200, a phone boasting a 12-megapixel camera. With the current best price of around 10,000 INR, the low-price factor comes to the forefront again.

Spice Mobility is a pioneer in quality low-budget cellular telephony, a look at Spice Mobile price list reveals just the sheer amount of choices buyers. But product specifications and prices are not the only aspects that make a company successful. There are other imperatives for business leadership, and this is how Mobility’s parent Spice Global has taken care of them.

The formula behind Spice’s success

Every business enterprise has two fundamental requirements for success: a substantial network in the business environment, and consumer visibility. Spice has ensured both in the following manner:

  1. Massive presence and collaborations:Spice Global possesses an enviable business network, fuelled by a growing web of its own companies, including Spice Mobility, Spice i2i and Spice Cinemas. To make things easier, Spice has acquired multiple companies, such as Thailand NewTel Corp., and with it the hugely popular Blueberry brand. Further, its collaborations and joint ventures are well-documented, including those with legendary firms like Xerox, as well as modern leaders like MediaTek. It is this last collaboration that has enabled Spice to procure high-technology chips at low prices.
  2. Advertisements: Long have advertisements been the cornerstones of effective marketing, and Spice is well-versed in the art. The paramount instance of this is the ad for the Spice FLO TV, which was made in the form of a music video in order to attract India’s young population. Spice Global’s other interests, like Spice Cinemas, also add visibility to the entire brand, sparking a symbiotic association between sister companies. Signing on popular actress Sonam Kapoor as Spice Mobility’s brand ambassador was a masterstroke in marketing the company to Indian consumers.

Summary

Spice, and in particular Spice Mobility (recently rechristened S-Mobility) have grasped the nerve of the Indian consumer market, and seem set for rapid growth in the coming years. Mobility’s market share, currently in single digits, is expected to grow to over 20 percent in the next decade. If such a statistic does indeed come to pass, Spice will have well and truly established itself on the path to become the Apple of India, competing with the world’s most prosperous phone brand, albeit at startlingly lower prices. And as is now widely accepted, once they conquer India, Asia will soon follow.

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Galaxy Note

When Samsung announced its Galaxy Note last year you could be forgiven for being a bit skeptical about its impact in the market. After all, the Dell Streak failed miserably in this space with roughly the same 5 inch screen size. However, the Note having just shipped over 5 million units since last year, could teach the industry pundits a thing or two.

Samsung Galaxy note vs Dell streakThe Note sits uncomfortably between the largest smartphones and the smallest tablets. In a category of its own.  Many people commented that people will feel daft using the Note as a phone because of its large size. Something that Samsung managed to brush off with a touch of irony. They responded with an advert of an elephant using the Galaxy Note, hinting that as long as you have big ears you’d look perfectly normal talking with it.

Samsung noticed that there’s a growing number of people who simply use their smartphone for playing apps, browsing the web and most importantly note-taking. Seldom do these people use the Smartphone to actually make calls. So it didn’t really matter if the Note was awkward to hold next to your ear.

Why has the Samsung Galaxy Note succeeded where Streak failed?

It’s interesting to ‘note’ that this isn’t the first time a ~5 inch smartphone has been attempted, in fact the Note is actually 5.3 inches, a little bit larger than the Streak. So how has the Note managed to succeed where the Streak failed? There are two things at play here, firstly Android was not refined enough to make use of the larger screen, despite having a larger screen the OS still behaved like a regular 3.5 incher.

Secondly consumers were uneasy about making a leap from 3.5 inches to 5 inches back then. Recently we’ve seen screen sizes of Androids enlarging from 3.5 to 4 to 4.5. So 5.3″ wasn’t a hefty leap.

Read: Why iPhone may always have 3.5″ screen

Unique Proposition

According to Samsung, the Note can be used as a smartphone or a smart notepad. The attached stylus allows users to easily write and draw on the screen. Unlike the stylus screens of yesteryear with resistive screens that required users to press hard onto the screen. The capacitive display allows you to write by gently gliding the stylus across the screen.

The ability to put pen to paper and quickly make notes appeals to both business execs and creatives alike. For a long time the requirement of having to use a small on screen keyboard to write down ideas was seen as a bit of a hindrance because it became an obstacle which choked creativity, now it’s possible to scribble at the same racing pace as your mind.

What’s more the Super AmoLED screen is strikingly crisp and colorful, thanks to proprietary technology Samsung is able to use AmoLED exclusively. It allows unparalleled crystal clear and super bright display performance without sacrificing battery life.

Conclusion

Even though the Note has been adopted widely by its targeted audience. The Note still needs a little bit more work. With speculation of a new “mini” iPad around the corner, the Note would be wise to prepare for a market invasion and polish up its act. The Note was supposed to come with Android 4.0 but that hasn’t been implemented to date. The stylus feels a bit cheap and needs a little bit more improvement.

This is a guest post by Simon butler from RentalTablets. If you would like to write for CallingAllGeeks. check our guest posting guidelines.

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