How to Restore Apps to your New Android Phone

For some, upgrading or changing phone is quite a bothersome task of migrating his apps and personal data onto his new phone. Or if he is totally clueless, he might add these things manually, losing precious personal data (and time) on the apps he had from his old phone, in the process.

In this article, we will show a blow-by-blow account of two of some of the ways you can transfer your apps and files to your brand new spanking phone automatically. After all, what’s a smartphone if things like this are done manually?

1. Use your Google Play account to back up and restore phone data. *Before switching to a new phone, make sure that you had backed up your data in the settings menu.*

On your new phone, log on to your Google Play account, then tap on the left most part of the title bar. From there, click on My apps. The All tab will give you the list of all apps you ever installed (and even those you had uninstalled already). You can click the Install button on every app you wish to reinstate in your new device. Unfortunately, you have to install each and one of them. The good thing here though is all your saved games, file or what-have-you will be transferred to your new device.

2. Use a file manager and transfer between two devices using the cloud. There are some apps in the Google marketplace where you can transfer your personal files from your old to your new android device. We will show in this case the power of ASTRO file manager.

Open the app.
Swipe to right to open another page of menu.
Click on Application Manager.
Highlight all the apps you want to back up.
Click on Backup
Swipe to the left to open another page of menu.
Find the apk files from your local storage.
Copy the apk files. You can select one or many files at the same time.
Paste it in your cloud storage facility. We recommend using a Google Drive as your cloud storage.
On your new device, open Google Drive and find the files you want to install in your new phone.

Similarly, you can multiselect apk files to be installed in your new device, but you will be shown a prompt message for every apk before you restore them to your phone.

This particular method is also a good way to back up and restore apps that may get removed from the Google Play for whatever reason. The famed Flappy Bird is a good example.

Once done, you should be good to go. Although this process takes quite a bit of patience, a true gadgeteer knows the importance of regularly backing up apps not just for the purpose of a smooth transition from one phone to another but also for accidental data loss.

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Android Apps that are Still Missing in iOS devices

iOS users always argue that the App Store is home to some of the best exclusive apps that never see the light of day in the Google Play. We even had an article written for some of the popular apps that were still missing in the Android ecosystem last year.

Even so, the immutable fact is that for every one piece of iOS device, there is a corresponding four Droids being shipped. There is also the issue of Apple’s strict policing of its app approval guidelines, which is a deterrent for some of these great apps to enter the iOS ecosystem. So why don’t we look at these great apps from the Android world that Apple lovers could only wish they had on their device. Check them out after the break.

apple versus android

1. Tasker. Did you know that your Android companion can actually take cues from your usage behavior and automate some tweaks depending on these. The Tasker app has become synonymous with the word automation and it does rightly so. It operates in an if-then construct. Some examples are:

If the headset is connected, then pop up the media applications.

If the device is charging in the car, then switch to car mode.

This app gained quite a following that a handful other copycats emerged from the PlayStore. We all know that Android is made for serious tweaking. Though, even true technophiles lament how steep the learning curve is for this app. This deserves a full article (and maybe even a couple of articles), so we would not expound on it here. There’s no denying though that this is a great feature only an open ecosystem like Android can provide.

2. Cover. This exclusive Android app made the rounds lately as it was recently acquired by Twitter. Cover is basically a lockscreen that changes depending on one’s location. When one is at work, the lockscreen changes such that all productivity apps will be right there at the lockscreen. Similar to Tasker, the app
take cues from context. It recognizes when you are at work, at home or in the car.

3. Mr. Number. You probably guessed this app is about managing contacts like blocking texts/calls from an unknown number or maybe even from ex-girlfriends or boyfriends. Well, you’re right. But it actually does more than that. And the most appealing functionality of this app is reverse number lookup. If you ever wonder if you missed an important call from a long lost relative or an employer attempting to pirate you or maybe your friends trying to play a prank on you, then this app is for you. For now, we could only hope that the number of lookups would gain traction as it really does look promising.

4. File Manager. There are a lot of Android apps that let you manage your internal and external memory that we couldn’t pick one that stands out because they basically do the same thing, with some as cheap as $0 and some that do require a little investment. Although this looks like a functionality that every smartphone should have, Apple users do not have anything like this unless of course they jailbreak their device to allow for more customization.

Many a technocrat have claimed that the fast adoption of Android OS, coupled with the fact that it has an open ecosystem, would eventually lead to more Android exclusive apps and that Apple should rethink its close ecosystem principle. As it stands now, both iOS and Android are on par with each other in terms of the number of apps in their marketplace. If smartphone tweakery is your thing though, then Android is the better platform for you.

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Rumor: Samsung Galaxy S5 Prime

The Samsung S5 has been in the market for more than a month already and rumors of other variations have circulated the web lately and have reached fever pitch. One of the most visible online lately is a premium, aluminum version of the fifth iteration of the Galaxy series. As far as we can remember, consumers have been clamoring for a more classy-looking Galaxy phone ever since the Galaxy S series became a household name via its best selling SIII. Are we finally going to see a premium looking Galaxy phone from Samsung?

Along with the premium feel of the device codenamed, “Samsung S5 Prime” (other reports say it may be, “Samsung S5 Active” similar to last year’s S4 Active) are also rumors of the bumps in its internal chassis to complement its aesthetic upgrade. We round up the rumors surrounding the still-fictitious device, and you can check them out after the jump.

1. 2560×1440 QHD (or 2K) display. In response to LG G3′s amping the ante with confirmed QHD resolution, Samsung followed suit with what was internally known as Project KQ. For those who use their phones as a media player, this may be a good news. But if you’re curious as to how big an upgrade a QHD from a regular HD, you may check a comparison made here from another blog.

2. Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 processor. The Samsung S5 came packed with the already-powerful Snapdragon 801 processor. Samsung may be in luck here as its biggest rival in their home country, LG’s G3 may miss out on this latest mobile processor as its official release is already slated in the coming days. Until then, we say, the S5 Prime is still the beast to beat in terms of specs.

3. LTE-A. Worthy of being called, Super Premium, this device is also rumored to have a blasting connectivity speed of 225 mbps. This chip is said to be available in Korea only but wouldn’t it be nice to have a mobile speed like that?

As we are still awaiting the official release from the guys at Samsung, let’s take this rumor with the proverbial grain of salt. We will try to update this story though once we get developments straight from the horse’s mouth.

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Top Three New Features of the Galaxy S5

The North American adoption of the new Samsung Galaxy 5 was faster than Samsung S4 according to a recent data. When the predecessor to the Galaxy S5 was launched, the Korean company got more than its fair share of naysayers because the phone was laden with a lot of features technocrats say an average smartphone user doesn’t need. That didn’t stop Samsung though from besting its previous sales record with the third Galaxy S phone. And apparently, things are looking even better with Samsung SV.

It’s not that far-fetched if we attribute Samsung’s success to the innovations that came out its Seoul head office. In this article though, we look at the three new features the new Galaxy has and see if it’s really worth the buzz. Check them out after the break.

Samsung S5 features

Fingerprint Scanner. Although Apple’s iPhone 5S was not the first to have this feature integrated into a smartphone, Samsung followed suit and gave privacy freaks another reason to upgrade to S5.

One thing of note here though. The fingerprint scanning technology of S5 is embedded on the home button, which the company’s made available to developers, thus opening up to third-party app usage. Apple’s approach is different altogether as the scanner on its home button is held on a “support enclave” within the A7 SoC that is communicated to other services as an encrypted data.

To check how to use the fingerprint scanner of both devices, you may check a short video here.

Heart Rate Monitor. Samsung can definitely claim that their S5 was the first to have this nifty extra integrated on a smartphone. It didn’t take a major design overhaul though to have this feature added on the Galaxy S5 as the company added another IR light at the back of the device where one can place his finger on, and the sensor then reads the visual changes caused by blood circulation.

Interestingly, there are third-party apps in the App Store (and Google Play too, actually) that does the same thing but use LED flash or camera sensor for this.

Waterproofing. It was Sony Xperia Z who made waterproofing in style and Samsung followed the lead with this year’s flagship. But let us remind you dear readers though that having this feature does not give us the green light to dunk our phone every chance we get. Think of it as an insurance for those unfortunate instances like accidentally dropping your phone in a toilet. The new Samsung phone is rated IP 67 which means that it can be submerged underwater up to 1 meter for 30 minutes.

Technology is ever evolving and though some critics say that smartphones have reached their peak and every upgrade is just incremental and evolutionary rather than revolutionary, for someone like me who is always on the go and loves the outdoors, these features are enough reason to upgrade.

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Samsung Galaxy s5 to Hit Stores in April 2014

Exactly a year since Samsung released the Galaxy S4 with its 5” screen, 2 GB of RAM, 13 MP camera, and LTE capability, the tech world’s eyes are now focused on the much-anticipated new offering – the Galaxy 5. The latest addition in the Galaxy series was announced last February and Samsung fans have been waiting for it to hit the stores since last March. Now, it is officially set that the release date of the Samsung Galaxy S5 in more than 100 countries will be on April 11, 2014. Needless to say, its price will position it in the top price bracket for smart phones, but based on history and the immense popularity of the (s) series of Samsung phones, this will not be a deciding factor for those wanting the latest in mobile technology.

So what is all the excitement about? Is the Samsung Galaxy 5 really worth the upgrade? If you are currently a Samsung owner, this question must have been niggling at you for many weeks now, particularly at those who own the S4. As predicted, the new model will be an improved version of its predecessor. When it comes to design, you will be glad to know that it looks less inexpensive now, which is a frequent criticism of the previous models of the series. The case is still made of plastic, but it has a more solid feel and the perforated design at the back gives it a classier look while providing a better grip. The finest improvements on design, however, are no doubt its water and dust resistant features. Samsung must have noticed the surge in sales for these types of resistant phones from flagship models of its rival smart phone creators. It is a wise move, indeed, as buyers are now basing their decisions on these key features.

You can also look forward to a more powerful processor and extended battery life in the Samsung Galaxy 5. It is powered by a 2.5GHz quad core processor and is run by a 2,800 mAh battery, as compared to the 2,600 mAh on the S4. The boost in battery life may not be that significant, though, bearing in mind that the Galaxy 5 has a wider Super AMOLED screen (5.1”).

There are great improvements in the camera, too. The rear camera now has a 16MP sensor and there are options to change the focus mode, which gives the similar effects as when you change the aperture settings on a digital camera. According to Samsung, the S5’s camera hardware is also equipped with a fast auto-focus feature that will prove to be handy for those quick shots that you have to make.

Another new addition that would really entice you to buy this new model of the series is the Finger Scanner. This provides enhanced security when making payments through your mobile device. The technology may be new, but early reviews show that Samsung got it right, giving Apple a tough fight for its share of the market.

The Samsung Galaxy S5 may just be an enhanced version of the S4, but this time it is great to see that the brains behind its technology have worked on answering the consumer’s needs, as seen with the waterproof feature and the Finger Scanner. So, for those asking if you should upgrade, the answer will be a definite “Yes”.

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Top 5 iOS Apps that are Still MIA in Android

 

Let’s face it, most apps debut in iOS before it gets to Android. So here are some apps that still have not found its way to the Google Play store as of yet. We tried to diversify the list by making the entries come from different areas of interest.

1. Tweetbot. Paul Haddad, the man behind this much loved Twitter app in iDevices, dismissed the idea that an Android version of this app is likely. Most developers prefer working in Apple’s ecosystem as a recent study showed that iOS users are more likely to buy apps than people with Android devices, which might be the reason why Mr. Haddad doesn’t entertain the idea of developing the popular app in Android. Mr. Haddad failed to realize though that Android devices now account more than 50% of smartphones sold.

2. Paper by Fifty-Three. To simply put it, this app is beautiful by any standards and it doesn’t hurt that it is multi-awarded. However, this drawing app has been only available for iPad users. The clamor for this app to be ported to Android tablets have made the folks at Fiftythree cite the problem of fragmentation among Android devices as the main reason for its missing in action.

3. Camera Awesome. While this settings-filled camera app is still a no-show in Google Play store, there is equally competent app in the Google Play store made by the same company, the SmugFolio. This app can “awesomize” your photo by its various settings that you can tinker to your liking and make it look like taken by a pro. The CEO of the company, Don MacAskill, said that the Android version is on the works but didn’t provide a date yet.

MIA android_PN

4. Clash of Clans. The fast-growing mobile gaming company, Supercell, – who is also behind the equally addicting mobile farm game, Hay Day – is now considering porting the popular game to Android. As Supercell CEO said in an interview, “You can’t be global without being in Asia, and you can’t be big in Asia without being on Android.” Amen.

5. Traktor DJ. There’s been a lot of request among the creative DJ community for this app to grace the Google Play, but the company behind it, Native Instruments, is not too keen on developing one for the Android users. The company cites the chronic audio latency issue that Android has on its sound drivers. But since Jelly Bean was rolled out, this has been addressed, to Google’s defense, and the latency was reduced from 100 ms to 12 ms which is already on par with iOS’. As of yet though, the company is still mum on a possible Android app.

So there you go, those are some of the better apps that have yet to be released on Android. But users of the Linux-based ecosystem should not fret as these same apps have their own counterparts in the Google Play store, you just have to find them.

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A Tizen S5?

Reports of a possible Tizen S5 circulated the web earlier this month but without anyone from the South Korean giant confirming or denying it. The report which was first read from the Indonesian site showed Galaxy S4 donning a different operating system, which was actually Samsung’s homegrown Tizen OS. This post stirred quite a buzz and netizens around the web were quick to assume that we might finally see Samsung’s very own OS in its flagship phones starting with the Galaxy S5.

There is no denying that the marriage of Samsung and Google’s operating system, Android, is one of the most compatible one in tech history, and the duo even beat the once-formidable Apple. But Samsung has sets its eyes on even grandeur horizons, which is taking a slice of Google’s revenue by implementing their own OS in their smartphones.

Most of the rumors actually suggested that the Galaxy S5 will come in both Android 4.4 and Tizen operating systems. This seemed more plausible and favorable for the South Korean company, so they could test the waters first and see how the loyal fans of the Galaxy series will receive this change.

The interface seems like a harmonious mixture of Android, iOS and Windows. See these pictures grabbed from the same website:
Tizen S5

Along with this rumor, the new galaxy phone slated for a first quarter release next year is said to have a huge camera upgrade in the form of OIS or optical image stabilization. This feature is currently used by Nokia in their PureView models and on HTC’s ultrapixel technology.

Well, it seems that we’ll never see the end in Samsung’s quest for ultimate smartphone domination, and who knows, this may even prove to be another money-making machine for them. Remember we had our doubts when the first of Note series came out the market two years ago? But as usual, we’ll take this with a grain of salt until the folks from South Korea give their announcement.

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Samsung Galaxy S4 vs iPhone 5s Pt.3

The Miscellany: Are These Two Phone Makers Full of Gimmickry?

We had given you a rundown of how the new iPhone stacks with the 6-month old Galaxy 4 in terms of aesthetics and internals, now let’s look at some of the added features that each manufactures boast of.

It is not unknown to anyone that part of Samsung’s success comes from a bunch of seemingly high-tech features their flagship phones have. Some of the more noteworthy ones are:

Smart Stay Introduced in Samsung S3, the front camera senses if you are looking at it and keeps it from timing out. The new S4 further upgraded the feature with Smart Pause and Smart Scroll.

Air View By hovering your finger just slightly above the screen, you can preview videos, emails and messages. One can actually customize it in the Settings Menu.

Gesture Controls Without touching the device, you can do some commands like browse pictures, change music tracks, accept and reject phone calls.

Multi-Window First seen in Galaxy Note 2, this functionality allows users to view 2 windows or more at the same time.

Dual Camera With this feature, one can now use the 2 mp front and 13 mp back cameras simultaneously. It’s useful when you want to impose yourself in a group photo, or if you want to include your background when making a video call.

Animated Photos Galaxy S4 users can now create animated GIFs with part of the phone frozen while all other areas move.

Remote Control S4 has infrared sensors that it can now double as a universal remote control.

S Health This feature allows the user to track his daily caloric intake, workout progress and weight levels. Also with Comfort Level S4 shows your comfort level based on temperature and humidity.

 

iPhone on the other hand has fingerprint scanner, and M7 motion coprocessor which was designed for fitness apps.

The Verdict

Samsung S4 is undoubtedly packed with features that one may find useful but some may find gimmicky. On the other hand, the new iPhone also stands on its own with the new iOS 7 and the fingerprint scanner on its Home button.

Overall, the Samsung Galaxy S4 is still on top in terms of overall features and value for money. And while iPhone is playing catchup in terms of specs, the iconic device still wins the hearts of many with its familiar premium-feel chassis and user-friendly interface.

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Samsung Galaxy S4 vs iPhone 5s Pt.2

What’s Under the Hood? The Battle of the Better Smartphone Experience

The new Galaxy phone has Android 4.2.2 out of the box, but as usual, the phone is skinned with Samsung’s own interface, the TouchWiz. For those who want vanilla Android though, Samsung has released S4 Google Play edition, which was the most recent variation of the new flagship from the South Korean company. iPhone 5s has iOS 7, which was a complete interface redesign we have not seen since iPhone became a household name.

It is also of note that the new iPhone didn’t so much make an upgrade to its camera as it still has 8 MP versus Samsung’s upping the ante to 13 MP. Does this tell that the Samsung S4′s camera is better than that of iPhone’s? I will post a detailed writeup on that in my next entry, so users can have a glimpse of the camera technology that both companies put in their smartphones.

Taking Samsung’s lead, the new iPhone is said to be twice as fast from iPhone 5 with a new chipset, the A7. The chip which was one of the highlights of the recent Apple keynote address, is built on a 64-bit architecture, the first ever smartphone to do so. However, some tech analysts argued that this innovation from Apple doesn’t have any application in the real world, or to put it simply, it was just another gimmickry from the folks in Cupertino.

If you will remember, Samsung Galaxy S4 also had a major bump in chipset as it was upgraded from Exynos 4412 Quad to Exynos 5 Octa 5410. However, this octa-core chipset is only available in select markets. For the true geeks out there, this improvement looks good not just in paper but also in terms of the performance, as this translates to better speeds, multitasking capabilities and overall experience. However there were reports that Samsung rigged benchmark scores to their advantage.

The Galaxy 4 also has 2 GB of RAM whereas the iPhone 5s is also said to have 2GB. RAM, or random access memory, is where the handset stores volatile memory and where the programs are held when its currently being ran. Both phones also come in 16, 32 and 64 GB of internal memory, only that Samsung S4 has the option to expand memory through external microSD up to an additional 64GB.

*This is the second part of a three-post series tackling how the new iPhone 5s stacks up against the current Samsung flagship, the Samsung Galaxy S4. For the first part, click here.

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Samsung Galaxy S4 vs iPhone 5s

Samsung Galaxy S4 has been in the market for 6 months already, and with the release of the new flagship from Apple, the iPhone 5s, why don’t we take a look at how these two companies hold their own against each other? Apple’s iPhone may have a slight advantage as they just came out the market; but in terms of overall features, does Apple give Samsung a run for its money? There would be a series of articles on this topic, so we can provide you an informed decision when choosing between these two handsets.

On the Outside: What You See is What You Get

Since the first Galaxy phone came out, the Samsung Galaxy S, Samsung has been using premium plastic material. Rumors suggest though that Samsung is actually considering new material for the Samsung Galaxy s5. At the same time, iPhone 5s in fact looks exactly the same as its predecessor, the iPhone 5. The new iPhone still sports a premium-feel aluminum body with 7.6 mm thickness, 112 grams weight and a 4.0 inch screen. The Samsung SIV was an upgrade, albeit small, in terms of screen size, from the 4.8-inch screen size of S3 to a 5-inch S4, with 7.9 mm thickness and 119 g weight.

The iP5s comes in three different colors: Space Grey, Champagne Gold and silver. The Samsung SIV has White Frost, Black Mist, Arctic Blue, with big carriers adding their own personal touches by way of new colors such as AT&T’s red, Verizon’s brown and Sprint’s Purple Mirage.

One of the reasons why Samsung is on top of the smartphone food chain today is its brilliant and captivating screen display. And once you have been spoiled with Samsung’s Super AMOLED (Active-matrix organic light-emitting diode), you just can’t go back and turn to other display types. Say, if you have been a Samsung user since the first Galaxy series smartphone came out, you may find it hard to adjust your eyes on other phone manufacturers’ displays like the Sony Xperia Z for instance which uses a TFT screen technology.

The late Steve Jobs argued that there is a certain pixel density that our eyes fail to distinguish individual pixels from a distance of 10 inches, which the company then coined as Retina Display. That certain density is 300 PPI (pixels per inch). The new iPhone has 326 PPI while Samsung Galaxy S4 has 441 PPI, which is why Samsung Galaxy 4 (and most of its high end products like the Note series) has a more vivid and crisp display than Apple’s. This same feature of Samsung phones throws some people off as they think the colors are oversaturated. But luckily, this can be changed in the Screen Mode settings if one likes a more natural color for his phone’s display. Both phones are protected by Corning Gorilla Glass as well. Samsung has a removable back cover, which means that the battery is replaceable, a handy feature when your phone freezes and you can’t restart or turn it off.

Can’t get enough of it already? We will focus next on the software side of each mobile, so stay tune for that.

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