Archive for the ‘Tablets’ Category
Staying in shape is hard work. As the tech savvy community that we are, we spend most of our time working in front of our computers and mobile devices. As a result, we often let our health take the back seat, never really finding the time to go to the gym or a fitness class and more often than not choosing fast food over much healthier options.
In the past, finding out the answer to these sorts of fitness or nutrition-related queries required going to an expert for advice or trawling the internet in the hope of finding an answer. Nowadays, things are a lot easier thanks to the health and fitness apps available on the App Store or Google Play. Because our smartphones and apps are always with us, they become constant reminders to check your progress, stay the course, and keep your willpower strong.
Here are the top 10 hand-selected health and fitness apps proven to be the most effective in terms of execution and, of course, results.
RunKeeper is a workout-tracking program that offers detailed stats about things like pace, distance, time, and calories burned. Features include detailed fitness plans to help you achieve a variety of goals (lose weight, improve endurance, run a race, etc.); real-time audio coaching to keep you encouraged; and built-in social sharing tools (so you can brag about those workouts with ease).
Cost: Free. Available on iOS, Android
Cyclemeter may very well be one of the most feature complete cycling apps you’re going to find, on any platform. Not only can you track every statistic you can possibly thing of, you can customize over 120 audio alerts to let you know exactly where you are during a certain ride. Cyclemeter also lets you share your workouts online as well as notify friends and family of exactly where you are, whether during a race or just for safety reasons. Cyclemeter has built-in training assistance to help you get ready for any kind of race you may be prepping for.
Cost: Free; $4.99 Elite Upgrade optional. Available on iOS
MyFitnessPal is a mobile app and website that gives you a wealth of tools for tracking what and how much you eat, and how many calories you burn through activity. Of all the existing calorie counters, MyFitnessPal is by far the easiest one to manage, and it comes with the largest database of foods and drinks. With the MyFitnessPal app you can fastidiously watch what you eat 24/7, no matter where you are.
Cost: Free. Available on: Android, BlackBerry, iOS, Windows Phone, Web
4. Pocket Yoga
Pocket Yoga is a self-guided yoga practice that you can customize to fit your schedule and experience level. Features include detailed voice and visual instructions that guide you through every pose, 150 illustrated pose images including correct posture and positioning, and a workout log that tracks your progress to encourage consistency.
Cost: Android ($2.99), iOS ($1.99). Available on: Android, iOS
Fooducate helps you eat healthier by scanning barcodes of products and providing a nutrition grade instantly, ranging from A to D. You can read unbiased information of a product, such as the controversy behind food coloring and make better, educated choices for your food intake. To help Fooducate, you can also submit products for analysis and write your own review.
Cost: Free. Available on: Android, iOS
No matter how much water you drink now, you’d probably be recommended by your GP to drink more. Drinking water is a key to maintaining a healthy lifestyle by keeping our skin looking younger, improving natural digestion and removing bodily toxins.
With intuitive gesture-based interaction, iDrated will help keep track of your water intake throughout the day and remind you should you forget to drink in a while.
Cost: $0.99. Available on: iOS
7. Smoke Free
We all know the effects smoking has on our health but giving up the habit can require a lot of willpower that some of us just don’t have.
Having visual feedback from your progress like how much money you’ve saved so far can be used as a big incentive to help us keep going.
Downloading Smoke Free can be the first step to becoming healthier.
Cost: Free. Available on: iOS
8. Workout Trainer
Workout Trainer is a fitness training app that comes equipped with thousands of free workouts designed for a wide variety of fitness goals, experience levels, and personal preferences. Features include a virtual fitness consultation to personalize and improve your experience; instructional photos, videos, and audio cues that illustrate every exercise; online support community; and a built-in music player.
Cost: Free. Available on: iOS, Android
Fitocracy is an RPG (role playing game)- like app that allows you to earn points and level up during your fitness journey. New friends and accountability buddies will cheer you on in an online social community that’s like Facebook but for fitness.
Cost: Free. Available on: iOS, Android
10. iTriage Health
Here’s an app that takes the concept of a medical dictionary to a whole new level. iTriage not only allows you to search symptoms and find potential causes, it suggests treatments and finds qualified facilities and doctors in your area. If you’re having a medical emergency and need to head to the ER or urgent care, this app can provide average wait times.
It also includes numbers for emergency hotlines and physician and nurse advice lines, so you can be connected easily to a real person who will give you feedback on your condition. All of this information can be saved on the app for your convenience.
Cost: Free. Available on: iOS, Android
Did you have a chance to try these helpful applications? Which of them did you like most? Let us know using the comments below.
Posted October 28, 2013on:
After Apple slammed Microsoft for gouging customers and designing tablets that nobody wants, Microsoft has fired back, saying that you can’t get real work done with iPads or its anemic iWorks productivity suite, and that iPads are little more than toys. Who’s right in the increasingly nasty war of words?
At Apple’s iPad launch, CEO Tim Cook and others zinged Microsoft for charging $99 a year for Office, charging $199 for people to upgrade to Windows 8, and for having a confused tablet strategy. CEO Tim Cook said about Microsoft:
“They’re confused. They chased after netbooks. Now they’re trying to make PCs into tablets and tablets into PCs. Who knows what they’ll do next? I can’t answer that question, but I can tell you that we’re focused.”
Microsoft is striking back, and striking back hard, esssentially claiming that you can’t get serious work done on an iPad, and that the only reason Apple is now giving away its iWorks suite is that no one wants to buy it. On the Official Microsoft Blog, Frank Shaw, Corporate Vice President of Communications at Microsoft noted the criticisms that Apple had aimed at Microsoft, and shot back:
“Seems like the RDF (Reality Distortion Field) typically generated by an Apple event has extended beyond Cupertino.”
And then he took off the kid gloves, criticizing Apple’s new iPads as overpriced, iWork as a pointless piece of software, and saying they don’t stack up against Surface tablets when it comes to productivity. He wrote:
“Surface and Surface 2 both include Office, the world’s most popular, most powerful productivity software for free and are priced below both the iPad 2 and iPad Air respectively. Making Apple’s decision to build the price of their less popular and less powerful iWork into their tablets not a very big (or very good) deal.”
He said iPads were not suitable for getting real work done, and that the reason Apple is giving away iWork for free is that no one wants them, as shown by their $10 price for iOS, or $20 for Mac OS X. He wrote:
“…it’s not surprising that we see other folks now talking about how much ‘work’ you can get done on their devices. Adding watered down productivity apps. Bolting on aftermarket input devices. All in an effort to convince people that their entertainment devices are really work machines.
“In that spirit, Apple announced yesterday that they were dropping their fees on their ‘iWork’ suite of apps. Now, since iWork has never gotten much traction, and was already priced like an afterthought, it’s hardly that surprising or significant a move. And it doesn’t change the fact that it’s much harder to get work done on a device that lacks precision input and a desktop for true side-by-side multitasking.”
And he concluded that when it comes to getting real work done, Apple is far behind Microsoft:
“So, when I see Apple drop the price of their struggling, lightweight productivity apps, I don’t see a shot across our bow, I see an attempt to play catch up.”
Who’s right here? When it comes to the productivity argument, Microsoft is. There’s absolutely no doubt that a Surface Pro 2 tablet equipped with a Touch Type 2 keyboard and a free version of Office is a far more effective tool for getting serious work done than an iPad with iWork. In essence, the Surface Pro with the Touch Type 2 keyboard is an ultrabook. An iPad with iWork is…well, an iPad with iWork. In other words, fine for light work. Not well-suited for serious work.
But when it comes to the tablet market and to sales, Apple is right. For now, tablet buyers don’t care about doing heavy-duty work on them. Checking email, browsing the Web, running apps, and light memo writing, are all well-suited for tablets. And that’s all many people need to do for their work.
So in the tablet battle, Microsoft’s Surface may be on top for productivity. But when it comes to the bottom line and sales, Apple is still cleaning up.
Professional Software Development
Most tablets in use today are iPad-size. That’s because most tablets in use are iPads. But in my opinion iPad’s just too big (and expensive) to represent the future of tablets.
Recently I’ve asked LI professionals about this. Bellow you may find the most interesting of them.
«I think it is going to come down to lower cost and lower weight. Even as I “type” this answer on my iPad3, I feel the device is heavy. I will almost always grab my Kindle over my iPad with the Kindle app because the Kindle is so much lighter to hold when reading, and I do not want to hover over a table when reading.»
Experienced Program Manager and Business Analyst
«The short answer is convenience, weight, and price. The iPad debuted as a consumer-friendly replacement for a laptop, so a larger screen felt familiar. With newer, smaller iterations of tablets on the market consumers are becoming more comfortable with smaller screens (helped along by the improved resolution and fidelity of the newer LCDs.) More efficient and powerful processors within the devices make them more useful tools, as well as more portable.
Depending on how you define “tablet market,” you can look to the absolute domination of Smartphones as proof of the convenience/weight/cost model winning out over screen-size. Smartphone sales dwarf tablet sales.
Generally, I think the sweet-spot for tablets will be Smartphones with a slightly larger screen than we see now, but still considerably smaller than the mid-size tablets (the 7″ screens.) They do virtually everything a tablet does now, but has the added benefit of easily fitting in a pocket or purse.»
Experienced Entrepreneur and Consultant
«For the personal/consumer market the smaller format tablet may have an edge, but for corporate/office use the larger format tablet is already making the laptop and, in some cases, the desktop computer obsolete.
Tablet manufacturers, especially Apple, have done an excellent job at getting product placement in movies and on TV in very suitable uses for a tablet. It is difficult to watch a recent TV program that doesn’t have a tablet in use somewhere during an episode.
The larger format tablets work much better for showing something to someone standing next to you than does a small format tablet.»
Executive Director at Rebounders United
«Dominate? No. But they are a welcome addition – I really want something not much larger than a paperback that I can slip in my pocket and use for ebooks, but is better functioned that a kindle or similar – and the new smaller tablets seem ideal.
I do think there is one improvement still needed – the size of the screen needs to use all the available space, right up to the edge of the device instead or a large margin around it.»
ICT Programmer Manager at Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment
«I think each new device type encourages entirely new and differing behaviors from us. With a desktop, monitor, mouse and keyboard we’re like these information seeking insects, clicking and typing and mining the web. On a mobile device, we’re out and about, very task-driven, very mesmerized in a habitual way, smoking information like the new great American smoke break or something, transactional, but only in short strokes and flows. We love our mobile devices too, its something Freudian and deeply sexual with the touch screen, the gentle strokes, all the handholding and extremely intimate, personal relations with our data-driven posthumanic sojourns, all our connectedness just a touch away. And then there’s the tablet version 1.0, right? Big touch, big strokes and a much more browserly, relaxed pace that actually feels more like a walk through a catalog or magazine on interactive crack. About the size of a large analog notebook of paper, or a thin book, but a little trendy-cool and somewhere in-between a research instrument and a fast tasking tool. Smaller tablets create yet another in-between, a soon-to-be discovered mental terrain that will most likely encourage a new set of emotions and behaviors. I’m fascinated to see how all of these devices will start to work better together and how the smaller tablets will not necessarily dominate the market so much as inspire new design, interaction, business and technological challenges. Should be really fun stuff!»
Accomplished designer focused on user experience, design education, curation, performance and dynamic media
In conclusion, big tablets like the current iPad will be popular. But they’ll always be the high-end minority. The future belongs to small tablets like the Nexus 7 and the upcoming mini iPad.
Professional Software Development
With the iPad’s domination of the tablet space and the iPhone continuing to enjoy strong sales, interest in development for these two platforms keeps growing. If you’re getting ready to jump into iOS development, these practical insights will help you get started.
First of all you need a Mac. It may sound like a conspiracy theory to get folks to buy Macs, but without a Mac you won’t be able to get your application onto a device for testing. And you need to be testing on a device.
You really should get an iPad and an iPhone or iPod Touch. Yes, there is a simulator. But the truth is simulators only go so far in replicating the experience a user will have. Even “simple” applications can be a joy to use in the simulator and a hassle on an actual device. And since you’ll likely want your application to work well both for iPhone/iPod Touch and iPad, you will want to get an iPad and either an iPhone or an iPod Touch (the two are identical as far as development is concerned).
Objective-C is a bit of a throwback. While Objective-C supports modern programming elements like object-oriented code, it is a fairly low-level language, too, and it clearly has not strayed too far from C.
XCode is radically different from Eclipse and Visual Studio. Coming from the Visual Studio system, with a couple of minor detours into Eclipse, you’ll find XCode a bit jarring. The focus is really less on everything that happens in the toolbars, sidebars, and menus, and more on what happens in the middle of the screen, which is writing code as text. This isn’t to say that XCode isn’t visual or that it lacks tools. But the overall system simply has a different philosophy from the kitchen sink approach that Eclipse and Visual Studio take.
XCode is ready to work with Subversion or Git. Out of the box, XCode comes equipped to work with Subversion or Git. You are still free to use any other source control system you want (through command-line tools, if they don’t have a GUI system or XCode integration). But if you already use Subversion or Git, you will be happy.
You should sign up for your developer account early. It can take up to two weeks for your developer account to be approved. The sooner you sign up, the sooner you will be able to get your app deployed to your test devices or uploaded to the App Store for approval.
There are different types of developer accounts. Developer accounts come in three major flavors: individual, company/organization, and enterprise. The main difference between individual and company/organization is that the latter allows you to create users within the account who can access it. Individual accounts are limited to a single user. Enterprise accounts are an entirely different beast: They allow for private deployments, which is exactly what an IT department writing apps for internal use needs. There is also an academic account for students, which allows some access to the developer program.
You can write code without a developer account. The good news is, if you are just learning, and are willing to forego deployment to a test device or putting your app in the App Store, you can use XCode and the iOS simulator without a developer account. The developer account has lots of benefits, including early access to betas and such, but for learning purposes, no account is needed.
iPads are not just big iPhones. When designing UIs, it’s tempting to think that iPads are just large iPhones. While this is more or less true at a code level (apps that run on iPhone will run on the iPad, though iPad-specific apps will not run on iPhone), it is a big mistake for designing the UI. An iPad’s bigger screen allows you to pack a lot more information on the screen without overwhelming the user, and the larger screen size will affect what kinds of UI widgets can be comfortably used.
Professional Software Development
Posted September 26, 2011on:
Apple’s iPad will have overwhelming majority of 2011 sales, but by end of 2015, Android expected to run on 36 percent of tablets.
Apple created the modern tablet market, and its iPad has become the undisputed king of tablet computers. The iPad promises to hold that dominance for years to come, research firm Gartner said.
Apple’s iPad will command 73.4 percent of global tablet sales in 2011 and will hold the majority of tablet sales until 2014, Gartner said.
In 2015, Apple will still be dominant over Android tablets and others, with 46 percent of the market. In that year, however, Android tablets and even some from Microsoft and Research in Motion will gain ground, Gartner said.
Gartner analyst Carolina Milanesi said Apple does so well because Apple delivers a superior and unified user experience across its hardware, software and services. Apple had the foresight to create this market and in doing that, planned for it, as far as component supplies such as memory and screen. This allowed Apple to bring the iPad out at a very competitive price and no compromise in experience among the different models that offer storage and connectivity options.
By comparison, Android tablets will account for 17.3 percent of sales in 2011, Gartner said, while any other platform will have no more than 5 percent.
According to the survey, overall in 2011, tablet computer sales globally will top 63 million devices, an increase of 261 percent over last year.
It is predicted, that by the end of 2015, tablet sales will reach 326 million devices.
As expected, the iPad will have the overwhelming majority of 2011 tablet sales, with 73.4 percent, or nearly 46.7 million total. Android’s total in 2011 will be 17.3 percent, or 11 million.
In 2015, Gartner said Android will grow to 116 million tablet sales, compared to 148 million for Apple.
Also in 2015, Microsoft tablets and Research in Motion’s QNX-based tablet will be sizable market forces. Microsoft is expected to sell 34 million units in 2015, while RIM’s will sell 26 million, Gartner said.
For 2015, Gartner’s forecasts give Apple 46 percent of the tablet market, followed by Android devices at 36 percent, Microsoft at 11 percent and QNX at 8 percent.
So what are your thoughts on this research? What do you think, who will take the lead? What are you predictions?
It would be great to hear your comments and assumptions on that point.
Business Development Manager
Professional Software Development
The HP TouchPad has been announced recently. From what I’ve heard of the TouchPad so far it looks like it may be quite a worthy rival for the iPad – if its release isn’t too late.
It looks especially interesting because it’s the first iPad rival that brings some fresh ideas in terms of operating system, interface, and user experience. Like the Palm Pre it will run webOS, which should lend itself very well to running a tablet device.
I’d like to quote some LI members’ opinions on this point.
«Having played around with lots of different tablet products over the years, the iPad is the only one that I would consider having a successful user experience. I heard (and read) lots of people who criticized the iPad for not having a camera, or business apps, or HD capability, or some other feature, but not many focus on why it is successful where previous tablets have failed. The answer is this: the iPad is designed for minimal input. It is a media consumption device, period.
Previous tablet PCs had a desktop OS shoehorned into a tablet form factor. Those failed because the desktop pc is designed for high input. Apple’s success with iOS, in my mind, comes from their design decision to minimize input and maximize output. It’s why iPhone was such a game changer, and why the iPad succeeds where other tablets fail.
I think that as long as competing tablets recognize the wisdom of Apple’s design approach to the tablet (minimize input, maximize output) and design their tablets for media consumption and not as pc/notebook replacements, they’ll be able to compete.»
«The HP TouchPad is still vaporware at this point and still not slated to come out until the summer. Apple is slated to release the iPad 2 model by then, so the TouchPad may well end up being released on a DOA basis competing against features that leapfrog those of the TouchPad.
In the meantime, the iPad has obviously developed serious critical mass with the consumer world, and is making big in-roads into the enterprise world. One other big factor is the applications available for running on the devices. Apps = functionality, and in that regards, given the big lead Apple has in that arena, any other players will just end up playing catch-up. As the iPod captured the MP3 players market, the iPad has captured the tablet market. And as much as all of the iPod “killers” that were released threatened to eat into the iPod market, none could compete against the critical mass and lead that Apple built up. The same cycle will perpetuate itself in the tablet world with the iPad 2 and beyond. So in short, too little, too late and the TouchPad won’t end up rivaling the iPad.»
Senior I.T. Manager
«There is an argument that the only people that are attracted by iPhone / iPad are those that like shiny toys rather than serious products! The reality is that people are going to have an increasing choice of products to do their computing on – what is used now is very unlikely to be around in say 10 years time (possibly not even 5 years). Everyone is getting in on the act, and you will have many other options very soon.»
So … the TouchPad sounds promising, but that release timeframe takes a lot of the shine off. The device looks good, particularly as a rival for the current iPad. We know there’s going to be an iPad 2 coming along within the next couple of months though. If the TouchPad comes out after the iPad second gen that’s going to make it a whole lot tougher for it to compare and compete well with the iPad.
What do you all think of the TouchPad? Will this tempt you away from an iPad?
Professional Software Development