Monday, December 2, 2013

Nexus 7 (2013)

I recently bought a Nexus 7 (2013) 32GB (No LTE) and following is my take on the device:

The first thing I would like to point out is that I am migrating from an Ipad (1st Generation) and I have no prior prolonged exposure to Android. So many of my observation might not be true for others. I have been using IOS for tablet and phone since last 3 years. I am not a mac fanboy but at the time of purchasing the tablet (2010) Ipad was the only choice, and since last 3 years I have never felt the need to upgrade my Ipad. The only reason for buying a new tablet is I don’t get to use the Ipad from the time my daughter has learned to use it.

There are plenty of reviews online so i am not going in to the full blown review of the device, rather I would point out things I like and miss on this device. I have been using this device since last 2 days.

What I like:

  • I have bought this product in India, and the experience of ordering online and the delivery was pretty good. I placed the order on google store at around 10PM and the package was delivered in 36hrs flat. Even the tracking was so good that I got an email alert in 30 seconds after my wife received the package. So overall a very good and smooth process.
  • As many people have said, the screen is gorgeous. For a guy migrating from Ipad (1st Gen) its stunning.
  • Processor is also pretty fast, nothing that I have thrown at the device has made is seem slow. Everything runs pretty quick and smooth.
  • The device is the right size for me, I wanted something that will fit in my back pocket of my jeans and this fits pretty well. Many people have criticized the bezel which is slightly big on both sides, but I really like it as u can hold the device firmly without touching the screen.
  • The touch sensitivity and feel of the glass is very nice. I haven’t had any issue till now with the touch as reported by many users of this device.
  • I also like the rubbery material used at the back of the device. Due to this the device gives a solid grip compared to an Ipad metal body, which i am always scared to hold with out a cover.

What I like about Android:

  • The combination of widgets and icons on the home screen is really nice for a change. It takes me back to Windows Mobile 6 devices I had 5 years back.
  • The update from Android 4.3 to 4.4 was pretty smooth and was not huge. I am used to large OTA updates on IOS, this was was just around 250MB.
  • SWIFTKEY – This is something which I bought in the first hour of using the nexus. I can not stress how useful this app is. 25% of my reason to switch to Android cud be attributed to this app.
  • Google integration is very tight on Android, if u live in google then android is a very good choice.
  • The flexibility and the customization that one can have in the looks, widget, icons etc… is enormous. All this while I felt restricted on IOS as I had moved from Windows Mobile 6.00 with SPB Software. The flexibility that I have now is really welcome.

The Negatives:

  • This device is really expensive in India, it sells for 387$ here compared to 269$ in USA. Even after accounting for the duty that would have been paid by goolge on the tablet, its pretty expensive.
  • There is lot of confusion on the LTE, apparently the band used by the device and the band that is used by the local Telco in India is different, so there is no surety if it will work when LTE is launched in India. I am not sure of the facts but I never checked them as I was never interested in the LTE model.
  • All said and done there are few apps which I miss on the Android. Two of them i miss the most are Reeder and Constellation.
  • The battery life is not as great as it has been written everywhere. This could be due to few setting that I have done or may be the number of widgets running on the home screen. I am not sure but will keep testing and benchmarking the device as I use it more.

Conclusion:

Its a great device, At the price sold in USA its hands down the best deal. For fellow citizens in India I would be careful in importing from USA as there is no surety of the warranty. If at all anyone is thinking of importing then one should try from Hong Kong (310$), Singapore (310$) or Taiwan (325$). I have heard that they are sold with international warranty in these countries.

After a few weeks with this device I will update the apps that I like the most and the way I have setup my home screen.

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Thursday, September 26, 2013

H800 Logitech Wireless Headset crackling sound

Couple of weeks back I got a Logitech Wireless Headset H800 from a local electronics chain as my old wireless headset was dying. The headset was under a good deal (almost 40% off) so i thought i would take the risk despite not many great reviews online.

After using it for couple of days I found that the headset worked fine with Bluetooth connection, but when using the USB transmitter on my desktop for sound there was lot of crackling sound, making the headset unusable. Now the same USB transmitter was working fine on my laptop. Searching online i found that many people had the same problem, but no solution was to be found. Digging deeper and searching for other headsets I could find two solutions and out of that one has worked for me very well. So i thought i will publish these 2 solution in case someone had the same problem.

Solution 1 (Easier One)

This is the one that worked for me so didn’t try the second one although many people claim that the second solution also works.

Basically what needs to be done is to disable the Intel SpeedStep, CPU C State and C2 State in BIOS. Doing this has solved my problem completely. Please note that these setting could be slightly different in your machine as you would be using a different mother board. I am using an Intel 55TC board.

BIOS Settings for SpeedStep

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From what I have read, I am assuming that the Speedstep technology dynamically reduces the bandwidth to the USB ports and that causes the crackling sound.

Solution 2 (Powered USB Hub)

Many users have reported that the crackling sound stops when using a powered USB hub to connect the USB transmitter. This again could be working as the powered USB ports are not controlled by the Intel SpeedStep technology.

Comments are welcome.

 

Sunday, August 4, 2013

I am back………

Well after a hiatus of almost 2.5 years I am planning to get back to blogging.

Many things have happened in last 2.5 years, and markets have been real crazy. From high optimism to dirt cheap valuations getting cheaper by the day is the current state of the market. It has been extremely difficult to make money by regular traders in last few months, and it doesn’t seem that things will get any better in near future.

I will try to share how I try to make money in this markets and survive, also will be adding few tech related posts every now and then.