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iphone-5-students.jpgBack to school supplies aren't just ring binders and a new pack of biros anymore - it's also the technology that can take your studies to the next, app-enhanced level. Apple know this all too well, and are courting cash-strapped students with a £35 gift card with each purchase of an iPhone 5 handset.

Students buying iPads also get the £35 gift card, with Apple promoting the deal alongside a number of educational and productivity apps.

It's a similar deal to what Apple offer students buying into their Mac range, who also benefit from a £70 Mac App Store gift card. However, Mac-buying students also get a discount on the hardware, which doesn't happen with this iPhone deal.

Cynics will say that Apple are trying to shift stock ahead the iPhone 5S release, but it's just as important for Apple to get their handsets in the hands of students - not only are they seen as the young and smart trendsetters (a group Apple like to be associated with), they're also setting up loyalty with the brand that could extend many years after the student loan has run out.

To qualify you must be a university student, a student accepted to a university, a parent buying for a university student or a faculty or staff member at any level.

To find out more, click here.

iPhone-5-official-02.pngIn this age of Samsung Galaxy Notes and Sony Xperia Z Ultras, Apple's iPhone has become a smartphone range at the smaller end of the screen size spectrum. That may be about to change however according to the latest iPhone 5S rumours, which suggest Apple may be preparing to up the screen size of the iPhone for only the second time.

According to a report from Brightwire news, via Bloomberg, Apple have been forced to delay the release of the iPhone 5S in order to accommodate a new 4.3-inch screen, up from the iPhone 5's 4-inch screen.

"[Apple] halted processor production for iPhone 5S in May," according to BrightWire news.

If the rumours are true, that'd be the second screen size jump in as many generations of the iPhone, with the iPhone 4S sporting a 3.5-inch display (incidentally, that was the size that Steve Jobs proclaimed was the mobile "sweetspot").

The report claims that, rather than an anticipated September of October release, the iPhone 5S will now launch in time for Christmas. The rumoured budget iPhones, unaffected by the spec change, will now be the major Autumn launch for Apple.

Something a bit fishy about this one if you ask me - sure, Apple may need to react more quickly to a market that's putting a higher value on larger screen devices, but the second screen size jump in as many iPhone generations seems a little too drastic to be Apple's style.

Foursquare-Deezer.pngDeezer has teamed up with Foursquare to give exclusive perks and rewards for going to see your favourite bands play live.

If you check-in seven times at concerts on Foursquare you could win a 3-month Deezer Premium+ subscription, giving you unlimited access to over 25 million songs.

How to unlock rewards:

1 - Simply like the Deezer page on Foursquare.

2 - Get out there and see your favourite bands. 1 check-in unlocks level 1, 2 more unlocks level 2, and 4 more unlocks level 3.

3 - Each level proves your dedication as a fan. Once your feet are aching, your throat is sore, and you have racked up 7+ concert check-ins, you'll be in with a chance to win unlimited music on Deezer!

Deezer is one of the most used music services around the world with over 10 million active users around the world with 4 million of those being subscribers to the music service. Deezer is available on a myriad of devices making your music available to you wherever you are.

iphone-5-vs-samsung-galaxy-s4-screen.jpgApple are said to be considering filing a new suit against Samsung over the company's Galaxy S4 handset in a court battle set to begin in March 2014, following the news that that US Magistrate Judge Paul S. Grewal has rejected Apple's latest attempt to bring the Android handset under scrutiny.

According to Bloomberg, Judge Grewal stated that:

"Adding another product to the case is a "tax on the court's resources .Each time these parties appear in the courtroom, they consume considerable amounts of the court's time and energy, which takes time way from other parties who also require and are entitled to the court's attention."

Apple had initially filed a motion hoping to include the Galaxy S4 for patent infringement back in May, and stated that they would be happy to drop one of Samsung's other products from court proceedings if that sped up the matter. However, they failed to convince Grewal.

Now Apple's legal teams are arguing that a whole new suit may need to be filed, as the products in question in the current suit will be out of date by the time the case is closed, rendering moot the action regardless.

It's a problem that tech companies regularly face when hitting the courts, as development of new products moves far more swiftly than court proceedings. It's a problem that CEO Tim Cook brought to Congress back in May, stating:

"I think the US Court system is currently structured in such a way that tech companies aren't getting the intellectual property protection they need. Our cycles are fast, the court system is very long and the foreign competitors in the US can quickly take IP and use it and ship products with it and they're to the next product as well. I would love to see conversations between countries and see protections between IP globally. For us, our intellectual property is so important, I would love the system to be strengthened in order to protect it."

iPhone-5s-rumour-flash.jpgWe've become fairly accustomed to Apple's "S" branded iPhone models being simply incremental improvements over their immediate predecessors rather than complete overhauls, and the rumoured forthcoming iPhone 5S looks set to be no different.

The latest small improvement that has leaked and appears set to feature in the new handset is a sizeable, pill-shaped dual-flash module on the rear of the phone.

Revealed by Chinese site Palm Uncle, it'll likely improve low-light flash shooting on the new phone over its predecessors, and will likely be used in iOS 7's new flashlight feature.

Over than that though, the leaked photo seems to suggest that the handset will remain much the same as the iPhone 5, at least in terms of size, shape and two-tone style.

As ever, take such rumours with a pinch of salt, but expect many more in the coming weeks and months as we approach the inevitable annual iPhone update.

iphone-5s-casing-leak-june.jpgThere may be a new iPhone model sitting just over the horizon, but its looking unlikely that it will land with an all new industrial design.

Expected to be an iPhone 5S model as opposed to a full-on numbered sequel to the iPhone 5, a new alleged case leak over at FanaticFone shows a faceplate backing up the incremental-upgrade rumours, suggesting the new handset will share much of its design sensibilities with its predecessor.

Expected to land alongside the release of iOS 7 (itself expected to land around September or October), the leak suggests internal components have been moved around a tad, potentially making room for new features such as NFC connectivity.

The leak also suggests that production has already begun for the new phone, which, if true, gives Apple a decent head start over demand for the Autumn-bound smartphone.

In related news, BGR have got their hands on snaps reported to be other components of the forthcoming iPhone 5S. Most intriguingly is a number of different coloured SIM tray units, suggesting the next Apple smartphone may follow in the iPod touch's footsteps by being made available in a variety of colours.

Apple introduce iOS 7 for iPhone and iPad: Features and release date revealed

ibooks-author.jpgTech Digest eBook Self Publishing Season - How to self-publish an eBook with Apple iBooks

Tablets and smartphones make for great reading devices, and you don't get better tablets or smartphones than Apple's iPad and iPhone. Through Apple's iBooks store, self publishing authors have a great market through which to tout their wares, and this guide will walk you through how to get your work onto the platform.

Note: This guide assumes that you've already written your book, at least as a draft. We won't be giving you advice on how to tie up that plot hole or name your main wizard character!

What is Apple iBooks?

iBooks is Apple's own eReader platform, and the name of its associated digital storefront. Available exclusively to iPhone, iPod touch and iPad users, it offers a slick touch based interface for readers to use and an easily navigable eBook store to browse. Thanks to the quality of the Apple devices' colour screens and processors, books published to the iBook store can take full advantage of multimedia features including colour images and videos.

Why publish through Apple iBooks?

It's incredibly easy for a writer to get their work onto iBooks, without ever having to deal with agents or publishers, while retaining 100% of the rights to the contents of their eBooks. In terms of royalties, Apple take a standard 30% cut of all profits. You claim all the rest, though you need to use an aggregating service to help with the publishing process, as Apple don't accept submissions from individuals. They too will take a cut of the 70% you're left with. It's by far the simplest way of getting your work on the store though as otherwise you'll need the backing of a traditional publisher, even if the aggregators take a cut of the profits too.

A new area of the iBooks store dedicated to promoting self published authors has also recently been introduced to Apple's iBooks. Called Breakout Books, it's an editorially curated section of the store picking out the very best from up-and-coming self published authors. Get your book on there and sales quickly go through the roof.

Apple also offer the iBooks Author publishing tool. It's a free piece of software for Mac that lets you make rich, multimedia-filled eBooks, complete with multi-touch touchscreen controls. It's as simple as dragging and dropping content onto a page, allowing you to easily make interactive texts. It's particularly useful for those looking to self-publish educational text books, and even has built-in tools for getting the books on sale in the Apple iBooks store.

Also, unlike Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing platform, you can offer your books for free through iBooks without limitations. This can be an incredibly valuable marketing tool, especially for authors working on an ongoing series - lure readers in with a gripping first novel, then charge them for the subsequent adventures in the franchise.

Limitations of publishing through Apple iBooks

There's an obvious one to begin with - publishing to the iBooks store only puts your novel in front of iPad, iPhone or iPod touch owners, as iBooks is exclusive to iOS devices. That's a user base far smaller than publishing to Kindle, seeing as Kindle eBooks are available across Android and iOS devices through the Kindle apps, alongside PC and Mac versions, as well as on Kindle eReaders. For the most part that shouldn't be a problem though, as Apple are pretty liberal in allowing self-publishing authors to sell their wares through other stores too.

However, there's also the fact that, if you make a book using iBooks Author that is sold through the iBooks store as a .ibooks file rather than given away for free, you will be unable to sell it elsewhere. That's obviously not a problem if you're not using the powerful iBooks Author tool, or using it to output in .pdf or .epub rather than the proprietary .ibooks format, but should definitely be taken into consideration if you do. What you gain in ease of creation through it you may lose in potential sales elsewhere.

Getting Started

First of all, you'll need to have that mind-blowing book written.

Finished? Great! That's the hard part done!

Before your would-be bestseller can be published, you'll need to make sure it's well edited and properly formatted. Here are a few basic guidelines to follow:

  • Make sure you've added a Table of Contents for the document, which is easily done using Word's and Page's built-in tools.

  • Insert page breaks after every chapter. It'll avoid inserting unnecessary stretches of white space when your final eBook is ready.

  • Make sure your cover image is added as a .JPG file, or it won't work properly. It'll need to be rectangular in shape and at least 600 pixels tall, and cannot contain hyperlinks or website addresses, nor any nudity.

  • Keep a check on your spelling and grammar if you don't have an editor. Have multiple grammar pedants read and re-read your text if possible to scan it for errors.

  • There's an upload limit of 2GB for the iBooks store, so make sure your eBook is smaller than that. That may be tough if you're using lots of multimedia content, so consider either cutting some, shortening some, or lowering the quality of audio, video and image files.

  • Apple will not publish materials that include erotica involving underage people, nor any texts that promote intolerance or discrimination. And rightly so.

Make sure your finished manuscript is in ePub format. There are plenty of free apps that will do this for you. We recommend Calibre, which is free and can output in a number of formats, and doubles up as an excellent eBook management application.


There are a number of companies that will go through the hassle of putting your book together in a form that Apple finds acceptable for submission. Which is great, as Apple won't accept submissions from individuals regardless. Either way, it's very useful to employ one of the aggregators - they'll go through the hassle of putting your book together in an attractive form, assign your book an ISBN number (as is required by Apple - a service that can cost a pretty penny even separately), and many will also help push your book out onto the Kindle, Nook and other digital stores alongside Apple's iBooks too. Pricing of the aggregators varies - some will take a cut of the sale price of every eBook sold, others will accept an up-front fee that covers lifetime sales of the book (which usually works out cheaper providing your books sells in reasonably significant numbers).

Click here for a list of services that can help.

Finding a Cover

Can you judge a book by its cover? Totally! The importance of great cover design is perhaps even greater for eBooks than traditional printed books, as they have to be attractive in a number of sizes, sometimes appearing tiny on mobile device store browsing lists. With just the image to work with, you can't employ any of the eye catching tricks that different materials provide to designers of physical books either.

Our advice? Make sure your cover communicates clearly what your book is about, and do it in an obvious rather than evocative way. If your book is about vampires, pop a good-looking blood sucker drooling the red stuff on the front, and then those looking for the latest Twilight rip-off will get all swoony. Hire a designer if possible - it's their natural habitat, and they'll know all the tricks to make your book leap out to a potential buyer.

And with all that, you should now be done! With much of the Apple iBooks submission process taken out of your hands by aggregators as a mandatory requirement, it's arguably even simpler than publishing through Kindle Direct Publishing.


Click here for more from Tech Digest eBook Self Publishing Season - Guides, Interviews and More on How To Get Your Work Read

blackberry-10-ui-top.jpgThere's no shaking Google's Android and Apple's iOS from first and second place respectively at the top of the smartphone user number rankings charts, but the battle for third place is a corker. The latest stats have just come in from the IDC Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, covering Q1 2013, seeing Windows Phone overtake BlackBerry for third place.

Microsoft's mobile OS now sits at 3.2% of the smartphone market share, up from 2.0% last year, with BlackBerry dropping down to 2.9%, a considerable fall from their 6.4% share a year earlier in Q1 2012.

While that's a 133.3% growth for Windows Phone, BlackBerry's share has shrunk by 35.1%. This is despite a gigantic new hardware and software push from the Canadian company, launching new handsets like the BlackBerry Z10 and BlackBerry Q10, as well as the well-considered BlackBerry 10 OS. While the Nokia and Microsoft partnership across the Lumia line-up is finally making headway it seems, leading the Windows Phone charge, it must be very worrying times over at Blackberry HQ.

"Windows Phone claiming the third spot is a first and helps validate the direction taken by Microsoft and key partner Nokia," said Kevin Restivo, senior research analyst with IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker.

"Given the relatively low volume generated, the Windows Phone camp will need to show further gains to solidify its status as an alterative to Android or iOS."

As expected, Google's Android OS retains the top spot with 75% of the market share (that's 79.5% year-on-year growth), with Apple's iPhone line taking a 17.3% share in second place.

For more from the report, click here.

cheap-iphone.jpgRumours of a budget iPhone launching this year from Apple have been given a significant boost today, with Apple's manufacturing partner Pegatron announcing that it will increase its number of workers by 40% in the second half of the year.

It has lead many analysts to believe that Pegatron (which makes many iOS devices for Apple), will be the lead manufacturing partner for a cheaper iPhone, aimed at courting customers in emerging markets such as India and China.

Adding further fuel to the fire, Pegatron's chief financial officer Charles Lin revealed that the company expect 60% of its revenue for 2013 to come during the second half of the year, with 40% of that figure made up revenue made from the manufacture of communications products. Communications products like a cheap iPhone, perhaps?

Another factor pointing to Pegatron's work on the budget iPhone is falling demand for the iPad Mini, an Apple device they manufacture. It's lead to a decrease in second quarter revenue as production has slowed, with Apple seemingly turning their attention to the next wave of devices.

Indeed, Apple CEO Tim Cook has himself teased that the company will be introducing "exciting new product categories" from the Autumn through to 2014. And though a budget iPhone wouldn't constitute a brand new product category for the company, it would be a new venture for a company that deals primarily in premium products. Morgan Stanley analysts have even stated that a budget iPhone could increase Apple's lucrative Chinese market share from 10% to 30%. And even if the cannibalisation of premium iPhone devices is a factor, the increased traffic to the iTunes and App Store could make up the difference.

goodbye-iphone.jpgIt's the end of an era: Apple are finally putting the original iPhone out to pasture, rendering it "obsolete".

This means that Apple will now longer be catered for through Apple's care centres as of June 11 in European, Asian, Latin American and Canadian territories. Californian statue however states that the phone must remain serviceable in the company's home state, so vintage smartphone fans will be able to eke out a little more love for the phone from Apple in California.

First released back in 2007, the original iPhone introduced the world to iOS, then called iPhone OS, introducing us to the now-widespread concept of mobile apps, through a silky-smooth touchscreen experience.

Primitive by todays standards (there was no 3G in the original model, and had only a 2MP camera and underclocked 620MHz processor), it did however lay the foundations for what would become a revolution in mobile telephony.

Apple will be also making the iMac G5, PowerBook G4 and 2005 Mac Mini obsolete, so make sure you get any problems fixed with them soon.

iPhone-5-official-06.pngA newly-leaked carrier roadmap has made its way to French tech blog Nowhere Else that suggests the iPhone 5S will be available to pre-order on June 20.

The document, intended to aid shopfloor sales assistants for Japanese telecom KDDI's "au" wireless service, states that employees should be ready for a June 20 launch ahead of July shipping dates and an in-store sales push.

A few other details are shared in the document, including "confirmation" of a 13MP camera and the inclusion of iOS 7.

Is the document legitimate? The laminated sheet is said to closely mirror the "cheat sheets" that forgetful in-store sales assistants refer to when pushing new products on customers. But considering they're often printed at point of sale from widely-circulated PDFs (usually only with a company header changing between rival stores) this wouldn't have been too difficult to fake.

The details do ring true with previous leaks concerning the iPhone 5S though - iOS 7 is pretty much a given we'd say, and many analysts are expecting a 13MP camera.

The dates too seem plausible. Apple's WWDC event is set to take place on June 10, lasting till June 14. If the iPhone 5S were to be revealed there, the June 20 pre-order date would be a sensible week after the unveiling.

However, during Apple's latest earnings call, CEO Tim Cook did point towards Q3 as being the company's month for "surprises" and innovative new products. With that in mind, either the June 20 date is wrong, or Apple have something even more exciting than a new iPhone up their sleeves for later this year.

wwdc-2013-logo-thumb.jpgApple's annual WWDC event will this year take place between June 10 - 14 in San Francisco.

The yearly meet up for Mac and iOS developers is usually a showcase for software updates from the Cupertino giants, but is often also used to launch some of the company's hardware too.

For 2013, Apple promise to give developers in attendance "an in-depth look at what's next in iOS and OS X", suggesting we may get a first official look at what's coming with the iOS 7 update. It's possible the event will also see the launch of Mac's OS X Mountain Lion successor.

As for hardware, it's anyone's guess! It's still a little too early we feel for iPad or iPhone launches, with their most-recent editions landing last Autumn and still feeling fresh, though we're approaching a year since the unveiling of the first Retina MacBook Pro models.

As ever though, devout Apple fans are scouring the invite for clues as to what could be on show at WWDC 2013. The colourful invite is leading some to speculate that new iPhones will indeed launch, given previous speculation that this year's models will arrive in multiple colours, as did the most recent iPod Touch media players.

iPhone-5-official-thumb-4.pngThe iPhone 5S, in true iPhone "S" edition tradition, looks set to be primarily a spec-bump up from last years iPhone 5, with rumour having it that it's only defining new feature is a potential fingerprint scanner. However, that addition could turn out to prove costly for Apple, as a new report is stating that its inclusion could lead to delays for the smartphone.

Reuters are reporting that issues surrounding finding a suitable coating for the fingerprint scanner could result in shipping delays, with the publication's sources claiming that coating so far used have interfered with the responsiveness of the scanner.

Production of the iPhone 5S was slated for June, but this issue is now causing worries that mass production schedules could slip, leading to a delayed launch for the handset.

As with all Apple rumours, we'll take this one with a pinch of salt, but the addition of a fingerprint scanner could be the marquee feature that the smartphone needs. It's particularly interesting when considered in conjunction with this Boy Genius Report article, which claims Apple are looking to push hard into business markets and the world of commerce, both areas where a fingerprint scanner (and NFC connectivity) could prove useful.

Other rumours surrounding the iPhone 5S have also included the possibility of a 12MP camera being featured, as well as faster processor speeds and the arrival of iOS 7.

Reuters also continue to fuel the fire around the potential for a budget iPhone model, with there sources claiming that a 4-inch iPhone with a plastic casing without the fingerprint scanner is also set to launch.

iphone-budget-white.jpgThose cheap iPhone rumours just wont rest, with the latest snippet of info on Apple's budget blower coming today in the shape of an alleged plastic casing for the smartphone.

Spotted by case manufacturer Tactus apparently during a factory tour of a plant that provides parts to Foxconn, the shell shown is a polycarbonate build, finished in white, and not dissimilar to the back casings of the iPhone 3G and 3GS.

Where it differs is in its flatness - the 3GS and 3G had curved designs - which could effectively cut manufacturing costs due to the simplicity to produce such shapes, as well as setting the style apart from the older models in what would be set to become Apple's premium range.

Taller, wider and thicker than the iPhone 4 and 4S cases, the alleged cheap iPhone case also has a cutout for an LED flash and room for a split volume rocker.

Interestingly, Tactus also claim that the same plant is producing the cases in black, blue, red and yellow shades too, echoing rumours that the budget iPhone would offer iPod-like colour options.

So what do you think? We're still treating budget iPhone rumours with a pinch of salt, but at least this time there's a physical object to go with the rumours, regardless of whether its been faked or not. If it was real, do you like the look of it? Let us know in the comments section below.

facebook-home-iphone.jpgFacebook have revealed that they are in talks with Apple to see whether their recently launched Facebook Home software could ever makes its way on to iOS devices.

Launching last week on a range of Android handsets, Facebook Home acts as an optional UI reskin, putting Facebook notifications, chat and other social interactions at the forefront of the interface, and driving all user data gathered back to Facebook in order to improve their advertising systems.

Apple have traditionally been cautious when it comes to allowing such software onto their platform; whereas Android is open, allowing for such interface overhauls, iOS is closed and does not allow for deviations from Apple's own designs. Furthermore, Apple are reluctant to share the data Facebook would be intending to mine, preferring to keep the information to furnish their own coffers.

"We've shown [Apple] what we've built and we're just in an ongoing conversation," Adam Mosseri, Facebook's director of product, told Bloomberg.

"It may or may not be Home. We could also just bring some of the design values to the iOS app. That might be how it ends up. Or we could build just the lock screen. Maybe then it's not called Home, it's called something else."

COO Sheryl Sandberg echoed Mosseri's comments:

"We are going to continue to develop for both [Android and Apple]. It is true that Android is enabling us to provide a more immersive Facebook experience than we can on other operating systems. Home is based on the openness of Android. It allows users to customise in ways that Apple does not."

Facebook Home's Chat Heads have already leaked into the iPad and iPhone Facebook apps, so it's possible that what's really likely to happen is that the iOS Facebook app eventually will share the same design ethos as Facebook Home. We'd pretty much rule out a full iOS reskinning right now.

ipod-touch-2012-official.pngSick of black and white iPhones, but don't want to have to cough up cash for a garish cover? The rumoured launch of the iPhone 5S may be ready to sate your appetite for tints and shades, as Japanese publication Macotakara are now reporting that the handset will come in multiple different colours.

Citing unnamed sources, Macotakara claim that five different colour iPhone 5S models will be available at launch. And while specific shades were not mentioned, it's easy to guess at what they could be, following the iPod's lead with black, white, yellow, pink and blue finishes.

The iPhone 5S is expected to be an incremental update for the line, and is unlikely to have dramatic new features, such as the iPhone 5's elongated screen. Aside from a spec bump and traditional camera improvements, it's likely to be a very similar phone to what launched last year.

The most intriguing hardware rumour surrounding the iPhone 5S is the possible inclusion of a fingerprint reader, as backed up by a job posting spotted on Apple's website yesterday.

There's also the possibility that Apple will launch a cheaper iPhone model alongside the 5S, a rumour that has circulated for may years.

s4-vs-iphone-5-banner.jpgreview-line.JPGSamsung Galaxy S4 or iPhone 5? Following tonight's big reveal, that's going to be the question on every budding smartphone buyer's lips for the next six months or so. The two major smartphone manufacturers have been duking it out for years now, but the latest generation of flagship handsets from both stables is the closest fight we've ever seen.

Both the Samsung Galaxy S4 and iPhone 5 have impressive feature and specs lists, but which is best for you? Based on what we've learnt tonight, we compare the key features and specs of both to help you decide which you should be splashing the cash on.

review-line.JPGDesign and Build Quality

Galaxy S4

The Samsung Galaxy S4, from an aesthetic perspective at least, looks very similar to the Galaxy S3. Available in "Black Mist" and "White Frost" colours, it measures just 136.6 x 69.8 x 7.9 mm and weighs only 130 grams overall. Still rocking a plastic polycarbonate build rather than an aluminium one (likely to keep costs down), the handset plonks a giant 5-inch 1080p display on the front, making it considerably larger than the iPhone 5 and even its S3 predecessor. Though slim enough to fit comfortably in a pocket, it's a large device that some will likely feel a little silly using for calls on a day-to-day basis, though will have advantages when browsing the web and watching video. 4G download speeds are also included, while there's also an IR blaster for controlling home cinema kit.

iPhone 5
The iPhone 5 was a considerable re-design for the iPhone line. Measuring 7.6mm thick and weighing 112 grams, it's 20% lighter than the previous iPhone 4S generation, and significantly trimmer than the S4. Available in two colours, either black or white, the rear panels are different on each. The white version has a raw aluminium back plate, while the black version has an anodised black finish on its rear. It's also the biggest iPhone to date. 4-inches diagonally, it now sits in a taller, widescreen ratio, but that's still considerable smaller than the Galaxy S4 screen. It'll still sit more comfortably in one hand though, which may swing the choice for small-handed smartphone fans. Made entirely from aluminium and glass, it has a real premium feel to it, though we're not personally sold on the whole two-tone look. The 4G download speeds of the S4 are also matched.

Winner - iPhone 5

Galaxy S4

If you like your phone screens big, but not as gigantic as the Galaxy Note 2 or other "phablets", there's quite literally a lot to love with the Galaxy S4. A massive 5-inch display sits up front, with a Retina-beating 441ppi full HD 1080p resolution. The handset uses Samsung's Super AMOLED display technology, which should also keep images and videos bright and vibrantly colourful on the handset, as well as offering wide viewing angles. It'll be a great phone for consuming media on or browsing the web with as a result, and even features screen tech that will let you use its touchscreen features whilst wearing gloves. Sturdy Gorilla Glass 3 is also used in its construction.

iPhone 5
Apple's top-notch Retina display with 326ppi features in the iPhone 5. Though it's in a 4-inch screen of the usual width, it is however taller than previous iPhones. The resolution of the display sits at 1136 x 640. Closer to a 16:9 ratio than before, the iPhone 5 is now better for viewing films on, with 44% better colour saturation, and with touch integrated into the display to reduce glare in sunlight. But despite being the biggest iPhone screen to date, it's still considerably smaller than that of the Galaxy S4. If you're looking to comfortably watch videos at length on a handset, it's arguable that the iPhone 5 screen will be too small. It will however look far more sensible when held up to your face for calling!

Winner - Galaxy S4


Galaxy S4

Samsung have opted for their 1.6GHz Exynos Octa 8-core processor in the Galaxy S4. Seeing as even quad-core chips clocked considerably lower than the beast of a processor found in the S4 normally see Android apps and software features ticking over nicely, the Galaxy S4 looks to be a real powerhouse of a phone. It's arguably even overkill - we can't think of a single Android feature that would truly be able to capitalise on such a chipset.

iPhone 5
The iPhone 5 comes equipped with an A6 processor, which is said to be 2x as fast with both CPU and GPU processing as the already-speedy dual-core A5 chip found in the iPhone 4S. Shrinking down the transistor size, it's smaller and more energy efficient too. Apps will load as much as 2x faster using the new chipset. Though it's arguably a slower processor than that found in the Galaxy S4, you'll be hard-pressed to tax it, meaning all apps and operating system functions flow without trouble.

Winner - Tie (Both processors will offer speedy, responsive user experiences)


Galaxy S4

The Samsung Galaxy S4 will come in three different sizes: 16GB, 32GB and 64GB. Each handset can also be expanded with microSD cards, up to an additional 64GB, making storage options far more flexible than with the iPhone 5. It's not yet certain whether or not the Galaxy S4 also includes the Galaxy S3's 50GB free Dropbox cloud storage promotion - it'll be a shame if it's lost this nifty feature.

iPhone 5

Though Apple's iPhone 5 doesn't offer expandable storage, they at least offer three different configurations when it comes to size. 16GB, 32GB and 64GB iPhone 5 models are all available, with pricing rising appropriately. It's a crafty tactic though, as those opting for more storage space have to pop money directly into Apple's coffers, rather than picking up cheaper expandable storage elsewhere. With the iCloud back-up feature you've got a little leeway with which to store files remotely too, though extensive cloud storage through Apple doesn't come cheaply.

Winner- Galaxy S4

Galaxy S4

The Samsung Galaxy S4 includes a 2,600mAh battery. That's over a fifth larger than the battery found in the Galaxy S3, and it's removable too, meaning you'll be able to hot-swap batteries on the go if you're running short on power. However, we'd imagine both that screen and processor churn through power at an incredible rate, so you may not see a dramatic jump in battery life despite the capacity bump.

iPhone 5

According to Apple, you'll get 225 hours of battery life on standby for the iPhone 5, with 8 hours 3G or LTE talk time, and 10 hours Wi-Fi usage. In reality however, you're going to be juggling through all these tasks (plus video or audio playback) throughout a day, meaning that you're going to need to recharge that battery long before the day is done.

Winner - Tie (We're going to withhold judgement until we see how much power the Galaxy's screen and processor eat up)

Software and Apps

Galaxy S4
The Galaxy S4 runs Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean, the latest build of Android while we await the launch of Key Lime Pie later this year. When it comes to apps, Android has grown remarkably over the last few years, with virtually every major app present on iOS now available on Android too. Android, unlike iOS, also comes with Google Maps as the default mapping provider, the premier mapping application on the planet. Jelly Bean also offers the Google Now service, which offers at-a-glance information provided by Google's search engine based on your interests and location. Everything from bus timetables to sports scores to local restaurant reviews are covered. It's a great feature.

Android is however a far less user-friendly OS, but what it lacks in dummy-proofing, it excels with customisation options. You can make your Android device look and act pretty much however you want it to, freely adding widgets and personal touches throughout the device, and even adding custom ROMs that totally change the way Android looks and feels.

Samsung have included plenty of their own software features through their own TouchWiz UI reskin too.For instance, there's a feature called S-Translator that can translate languages automatically. You type words out in English and the Galaxy S4 then speaks them in one of nine languages, making it a valuable travel buddy. The camera system can also recognise text in foreign languages and translate it.

Smart Scroll web-page eye-tracking and Smart Pause media pausing are also included, with the front facing camera following your eye movements and angle of the handset in your hand to pan pages automatically, or pause videos if you look away from the screen. The screen's "Adapt Display" will also kick in automatically, adjusting settings such as brightness depending on the apps you're using and ambient brightness so that it is comfortable to your eyes.

The S4 also has Group Play, a shared music feature which lets users sync and play music on up to eight devices simultaneously, while video calling has been enhanced so it now works with up to three people - or you can have a video call but show an image.

S-Health is a suite of health and fitness related features. It will tell you how many calories you are burning, gauge your heart rate and sleeping patterns. You can also monitor your blood sugar levels with an add on.

The TouchWiz UI however isn't as easy on the eye as stock Android, now anywhere near as attractive as Apple's iOS.

iPhone 5

They say there's an app for everything, and with Apple's iOS App Store, that's more or less true. There are well over 700,000 apps available in Apple's store, with an app to cover almost every potential need. From fitness to finance, arts to archaeology, you name it, there's a shed load of apps for every possible niche. Gamers are served particularly well with the iPhone, with it more than a match for handhelds like the Nintendo 3DS or PS Vita these days.

The iPhone 5 also features the Siri voice control app, letting you search the web, set calendar reminders, dictate emails and much more with just your voice alone. However, it's still more useful in the US than the UK, where a giant database of details on local businesses and events integrates directly with the app. In the UK, it's far less comprehensive in terms of what it can do, meaning it is still a bit of a novelty.

The iPhone also offers FaceTime as the native video calling application, allowing users to call Mac, iPad and iPod touch owners for free, as well as other iPhone users.

As for the design of the iOS operating system itself, it's incredibly easy to use and looks beautiful. It pretty much invented the grid-based app layout that everything from the Xbox 360 to Roku entertainment players have ripped off since.

What you gain in ease of use you lose in customisation options though, and if you're a tinkerer who likes to get tweak every property and potential UI layout, it's not a patch on Android. The latest version of iOS, iOS 6 (which the iPhone 5 ships with) also drops the superb Google Maps app in favour of Apple's own Maps application. Apple's take on cartography is pretty but buggy and inaccurate, nowhere near as extensive or precise as Google's and lacking useful features such as Street View.

Winner - Tie (iOS is slick but closed, Android and TouchWiz open but more complicated)

Camera and Video Recording
Galaxy S4

The S4 sports a 13 megapixel camera, a significant spec-bump up from the 8 megapixel one found in the S3. 1080p video recording is also onboard.

Plenty of nifty shooting software features accompany the now-standard HDR, panoramic and photo filter shooting options.

For instance, It also includes a "Dual Camera" record feature, letting you shoot videos or photos from both the front and rear cameras at the same time, enabling you to be in the picture if you are taking the image. You can also add voice to an image as it can capture a few seconds of audio simultaneously.

The S4 also has a feature called "Drama Shot" that can snap 100 images in four seconds, and then make a composite of the most interesting moments captured. All these images and videos can then be stored in the "Story Album" gallery, that automatically makes a library of related shots based on date and location data.

iPhone 5

Though its megapixel count of 8 isn't any higher than the majority of top-tier smartphones, and considerably lower than that found in the Galaxy S4, the iPhone 5 sees Apple's imaging systems again impressing. A dynamic low-light mode for better night time shooting is added to the 5-element lens and f/2.4 aperture. There's also a panorama shooting mode natively built into the camera app for the first time, with a 360-degree shot resulting in a giant 28 megapixel image. The A6 chip allows for faster photo capture too, as well as a smart filter for better colour matching and reduced noise. Share Photo Streams allow you to share photos with pals, and receive messages on your snaps too.

Combine all that with clever HDR and Macro software, and you'll get excellent still image results almost every time. A super-fast shutter speed that lets you snap multiple images directly after each other sweetens the deal, as do the many superb photography apps on the App Store.

1080p video recording with anti-shake functionality and facial recognition tech will likely impress too, with the iMovie app letting you make a few simple edits on the go.

Winner - We're going for the Galaxy S4, based on the rich feature list and higher megapixel count


Galaxy S4

Pricing has yet to be revealed for the Samsung Galaxy S4.

iPhone 5

iPhone 5 handsets come in three sizes, 16GB, 32GB and 64GB, with the price scaling with each. Unlocked and direct from Apple, you're looking at £529, £599 and £699 respectively for each handset. A free 16GB handset on 24 month contracts hover around the £30 a month mark.

Winner - Not sure yet. We'll update once Galaxy S4 pricing is revealed.


Based on what we've learnt about the Samsung Galaxy S4 tonight, it looks as though Apple's iPhone 5 may have been unseated as the smartphone king. As well as the impressive hardware tech, a slew of interesting software features make the Galaxy S4 look very attractive indeed.

Having said that, the two flagship smartphone lines are now very different indeed, and look to serve two quite different audiences. If you're after a giant, luscious display, the Galaxy S4 is certainly what you should be looking at. But if you're after a more subtly-sized smartphone made of superior materials, the iPhone is the one for you. Certainly, both operating systems are mature enough to offer excellent user experiences regardless of which you choose to side with.

It will likely be ultimately a question of pricing, one as-yet-unanswered as we await the Galaxy S4 pricing structure. It's likely to be considerably cheaper than the iPhone though, adding another string to its bow. All in from what we've gathered so far, were calling the Galaxy S4 the winner overall here.


For more Samsung Galaxy S4 launch news, click here

cheap-iphone.jpgThe long-rumoured cheap iPhone will enter production in May 2013, according to a new report from Taiwanese newspaper sources, putting it in line for a late summer/Q3 launch.

The Commercial Times (as translated by MicGadget) has spoken to sources at the Pegatron factory and is claiming that the plant will be the primary builder of the new budget phone. Pegatron already make 40% of all iPad Mini's shipped, and the cheap iPhone production deal would ring true with Apple's plans to widen its assembly teams beyond just primarily Foxconn.

As has previously been suggested, the report once again claims that the cheap iPhone will opt for a plastic build, giving it a price tag closer to the region of $350.

The Chinese market is a gigantic, lucrative one, but as the report states, Apple are currently pricing themselves out of the market. The average yearly salary in China, when converted to British Pounds, is around £2,000, and the iPhone 5 starts at around £565. Though it makes it a luxury device and highly sought after, it puts it out of the reach of the average consumer, hence the rampant sales of knock-off clones.

But while a cheap iPhone could boost Apple's market share in China, it may damage revenues elsewhere. In Europe and the US, the average wage is higher and people are currently happy to pay the extra premium for the standard iPhone devices. Unless Apple significantly hamstrung the cheaper devices (which in itself would cause them problems, with users now expecting a high standard from any product bearing the Apple logo) it's likely that those who'd normally save up the extra pennies for the premium versions would begin to opt for the cheaper ones, knocking down Apple's revenues in the process.

iPhone-5-official-05.png"Dude, where's my TriPod?"

Or indeed, my Mobi or TelePod - all names that Apple had once considered calling the iPhone.

Apple's former head of advertising, Ken Segall, revealed the once-potential smartphone names during a talk at the University of Arizona's Department of Marketing, according to 9to5Mac.

Even the iPad name had once been bandied about in relation to the iPhone, interesting as it eventually reared its head to become Apple's tablet branding.

Though we definitely prefer the iPhone name, the thinking behind the other pitched names is clear.

With the TelePod, you have the two main components that initially characterised the iPhone - its TELEphoning abilities and its iPOD functions.

The TriPod naming would also have sat well with Steve Jobs' initial iPhone unveiling speech, in which he talked up the devices' three pillars of functionality - internet connectivity, phone functions and iPod music playback.

Still they're all a lot less elegant than the iPhone moniker, so well played to whoever put their vote in there.

I AM PLAYR Mobile 1 (Homescreen).jpgNot content with snapping up over 8.4 million players through its web and Facebook games, We R Interactive's casual football sim I AM PLAYR is now available as an iPhone and iPad app too.

A free-to-play title that mixes action mini-games with role-playing elements and professionally shot, star-studded broadcast-quality video footage, I AM PLAYR already offers gamers the chance to fill the boots of an up-and-coming young football star as he signs his first professional contract with River Park FC, with the aim to make him as valuable to the club as possible.I AM PLAYR Mobile 2 (Passing Drills).jpgThe new I AM PLAYR Mobile app acts as a supplementary experience to the desktop game. It focusses on mini-games, letting you flick and swipe your way around a number of training pitches, with drills including target practice and passing practice. While the free-to-play nature of the app means that each mini-game is time-locked (in-app purchases allow you to play whichever drill you prefer, as you please), the game is designed in such a way that there is always at least one available training game to play through.

Though the game can be played as a standalone diversion, I AM PLAYR Mobile is at its best when tied to an account with the desktop version of the game. Those who play I AM PLAYR through Facebook or various other browser-based portals will be able to use the mobile app to boost their I AM PLAYR Match Fitness on the go. I AM PLAYR desktop players already play the social game for an average of 44 minutes per day, with the new app designed to keep them in the I AM PLAYR universe for longer still.I AM PLAYR Web 3 (Changing Room).jpgI AM PLAYR will face stiff competition on the iPhone and iPad from New Star Soccer, a game we heralded as one of the most addictive gaming apps of all time. But while New Star Soccer sports charming retro graphics, I AM PLAYR trumps it when it comes to presentation. While the iPad/iPhone version of I AM PLAYR has full 3D graphics, it comes into its own on its companion web version, where video footage is seamlessly integrated into the gameplay. Footballing stars like Steven Gerrard, Theo Walcott and Aaron Lennon, alongside a whole cast of actors, allow I AM PLAYR to deliver a rich, interactive storytelling experience. Over 250 video clips feature in the game. During these video cut scenes (including behind-the-scenes dressing room moments and nights out at glitzy showbiz parties) players will often be faced with multiple choice dilemmas that, depending on the path they take, will have a bearing on the success of their in-game careers.iamplayr-celebrate.pngThough in-game purchases can be bought with real money to help speed up skill unlocks and career progression, patient players can make it through the game without paying a penny if they chose to do so. While in-game microtransactions certainly help boost We R Interactive's revenue streams, it's not the sole monetising element in the game. As in real life, there are plenty of real-world brands looking to court the football players of I AM PLAYR, and gamers will regularly be offered sponsorship opportunities for their player. The likes of Nike, Gillette, Alfa Romeo and Red Bull all feature. It's a subtle way of putting advertising into the game, but in the context of the footballing world (where so many stars have numerous sponsorship contracts) it feels natural and welcome.I AM PLAYR Web 2 (Training).jpgMore than 15,000 new players join up to play I AM PLAYR every day, and if the iPhone and iPad versions pick up steam those numbers may spike quickly. The social/casual gaming markets and mobile gaming markets are incredibly competitive, particular the free-to-play space. But We R Interactive's obvious love of the beautiful game and I AM PLAYR's top-notch presentation looks to elevate the game beyond the usual freemium grind.

For more on I AM PLAYR, visit To grab the new I AM PLAYR Mobile app, click here.

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