msafiri takes a peek over the cutting edge
Top software update: Android 5.0 Lollipop
Google has continued its trend of naming its popular mobile software updates after candy and desserts with the latest Android 5.0 release, Lollipop. Visually, it’s a big upgrade, sporting a flatter, cleaner ‘Material Design’ ,but there’s lots going on under the bonnet too, including support for your phone or tablet to work with your TV, watch, or even your car. On top of that, Google’s teamed up with HTC and Motorola to produce two stunning new devices for Android 5.0 to run on, the gorgeous Nexus 9 tablet computer and the huge Nexus 7 smartphone, a giant version of Motorola’s popular Moto X.
Next-gen gaming comes of age
It’s hard to believe that Microsoft’s Xbox One and the Sony PlayStation 4 games consoles have been on sale for more than a year, but both machines continue to make advances in the quest for dominance in your living room. In its latest update, the Xbox One now lets you watch and view Twitter side by side (controlling it with just your voice), but it’s the PS4 that’s making the biggest strides. The recent 2.00 firmware update has added features including direct YouTube uploads of your gameplay footage and Share Play, which lets you play multiplayer games with a friend as though you were side by side on the sofa, directly over the Internet – even if the game itself doesn’t support online gaming.
The Hoverboard arrives, just in time
We were promised hoverboards in 2015 in the film Back To The Future Part II, and, by an eery coincidence, it looks like we’ll have them! The Hendo Hoverboard is the latest tech sensation on crowdfunding website Kickstarter, and aims to help you do your best Marty McFly impression with four built-in engines that create their own magnetic fields to lift you off the ground. The Hendo will set you back US$10,000 when it ships to backers in October, but what price can you put on living out your childhood fantasy?
Great design! New iPads…
Another year, another new set of iPads from Apple, but the new generation might just be the most impressive yet. The 9.7-inch iPad Air 2 has been whittled down 18 per cent from last year, and now measures just 6.1mm thick, while running faster than ever and remaining at the same US$499 price point. The iPad mini 3 meanwhile keeps the same portable 7.9-inch display but has been made more secure with the introduction of Apple’s seamless Touch ID fingerprint scanning tech. Wisely, Apple have kept several of the previous models on sale too, with the cheapest iPad mini now starting at just US$249, marking the first time an Apple tablet has ever even been close to ‘affordable’.