iPhone6s – ‘Dreams & Facts’ – 3 months ahead

Well, it is nearly weekend, so time to relax and chat a bit about the coming future of the next iPhone ūüôā ; but not only that, we are just 3 months in advance of the presentation of the next iPhone6s series; which I would say will be next coming 18th September 2015.

Currently I have read many rumors and predictions about the possible new coming features of this new iPhone; but based in my own experience I want make also my own bet; explaining my reasoning behind also.

These are the most possible (and not possible) upgrades that we will see in the Apple Autumn event:

  1. A9 CPU based on FinFET 14nm: (95%) I am mostly sure of this upgrade taking into account the close collaboration between Apple and Samsung Semi foundry.
  2. 2GB of RAM: (75%) This prediction could be quite disapointing for some fan’s, but although when Apple presented the iPad Air 2 this year with that upgrade I was pretty convinced (99%) that it should be the path for all the iDevices from 2015; today I am not fully sure. As it is possible that Apple wants to keep the bump to 2GB only for the tablets and PRO devices; as the iPad Air 2 and a rumored iPad 13″ Pro. Let’s see if I am wrong (and happy about my mistake ūüėČ ) and we get powerful iPhones with 2GB of RAM; or, if we even need to wait for iPhone 7 for it.
  3. LPDDR4 RAM:¬†(90%) This is also a pretty sure movement, doesn’t matter if with 1GB, 1.5GB or 2GB increase, as this newer RAM technology is also faster and more power efficient, and already well tested in the field with al the Samsung S6 smartphones deployed wordwide.
  4. Battery Longer Life: (95%) If the above features happen, this will happen also, but not because the battery will be bigger in capacity, but due lower power consumption of the chipsets used.
  5. 12-megapixel iSight Camera: (95%) After three years with the same camera resolution (8MP since iPhone 4s) I think that Apple has squeezed up to the maximum this sensor; and while Apple internally develops the just acquired LinX Imaging technology for their future products (something which I believe it will not happen at least to iPhone7s (2017) or very luckily on iPhone7) this increase of resolution would give another step ahead while Apple prepares its way for their own embedded cameras with SLR quality images.
  6. 2-megapixel FaceTime Camera: (99%) After two years living with a limited 1.2Mpix camera, and the high demand from the users, this will be also the year where we could finally could make Full-HD selfies; and possible even front panorama captures.
  7. Optical Image Stabilization (OIS): (85%) This would be also a possible added feature on the iPhone6s, but only if it still fits inside the slimmer housing of it, compared with the 0.2mm thicker iPhone6Plus which already has it.
  8. Touch ID 3rd Gen: (100%) This will be for sure, nothing noticeable externally speaking, but yes in its daily use, as already happen with the second generation of last year.
  9. Housing with Alu-7000: (85%) I think that Apple will not change their last years strategy and the housing will remain in the same shape form (which means keeping the disapointing protruding back camera at least up to next year); but if the yield rate is good and their partners can offer the requested quantities, it is possible that Apple will move to the newer Aluminum 7000 series alloy which is used in their Apple Watch 2015 and giving so good reviews. Besides, it is also quite feasible that the same color tones (darker Space Grey) introduced in the Macbook 2015 would be added to it.
  10. FLASH size storage: Well, this is also a tricky feature. I am sure that the maximum capacity will remain in 128GB; but still big ‘Q’ is if Apple will decide to change to 32/64/128GB offer, or if they will stick on the 16/64/128GB. If I would have to bet, I would say 75% possibilities for the change: 32/64/128GB; but this is more marketing strategy and profits than something else.
  11. Sapphire front glass: (0-5%) I keep these last two features because I really doubt about them at this point in time. For this one, I don’t even think that Apple’s is still considering for this year this change, as this would be a Major change, adding also a big cost impact, and I also doubt that they have put in place enough production capabilities on top of the glass for the luxurious Apple Watch models.
  12. Force Touch: (5%) For this item I also really doubt about it. Simply because it would have a big impact in the housing design (in terms of bigger? size/shape changes); and this is totally outside of the 2-years housing design process of Apple. Alright, it could be cool to have it right now, but I don’t think so. In fact, I believe¬†this will be the major feature for next year iPhone7; once Apple has¬†completely internalized all the lessons learned (from Watch and Macbooks usage); and also they have time to prepare a upgraded iOS10 user interface taking it into account to really bring added value to the whole system. It is possible that we will see it sooner (maybe in the next iPad 13″ Pro rumored for 2nd Nov 2015?); but not in an iPhone but at least 23rd Sept. 2016.

And these are all my predictions/wishes three months ahead of the real release of next iPhone6s ūüėČ

French – Spanish Berlitz Basic Talking Dictionary

In my way of improving my languages knowledge I have been always looking for good offline translation electronic dictionaries, which I can bring always with me even when I have not Internet connection (so, no access to the usual and free Google Translator). Nowadays there are plenty of offers in the App Store, free and paid based; so to find a good option is not always easy.

In this review I will talk to you about the French РSpanish Berlitz Basic Talking Dictionary from Langenscheidt GmbH & Co. KG; a German company with a long tradition on paper dictionaries, with good reputation on the market and on which I had many good experiences when I used years ago their paper dictionary products.

FR_SP_basic_dic_icon

As I was saying, I was looking for a good and reliable FRench<->SPanish dictionary app; and after trying several free versions (mostly ad-based and/or also with bad wording databases); and some paid apps too, I found that this app would be the best one for any average (and even high level) French/Spanish languages user/student.

FR_SP_basic_dict_000

Even if it says that is the BASIC variant, it has 140.000 (headwords, expressions and translations) entries on it, where 39661 French and 36185 Spanish of them have native speakers pronounced audio included.

So, as you see, it is pretty complete, and honestly, after more than a year of intensive use I never had a single case where my searching was not found inside its database, it is bullet proof.

It also allows you to write some words together and let the app to search for all the entries at same time, what can be pretty useful when you would like to translate a phrase:

FR_SP_basic_dict_001

As an extra feature, and even so many other dictionaries also offer it, I find very useful the Flash Cards feature, which allows you as user and student to add the words that you look for on it for later review/study. I have use the Flash cards study methodology also in the past, and today I still find it as a useful vocabulary memorization system.

FR_SP_basic_dict_002

And also, in case you hear a word but you didn’t understand it completely how to write it, or simply you don’t remember exactly how to spell it, the app has also a missing/swapped¬†letter search system where some letters are forgotten:

FR_SP_basic_dict_003

And I must admit that for some difficult to pronounce languages as it is French, it will be very practical in many cases; mostly in conversation or listening situations where you would like to find a word which is not very clear how to write/spell it.

On top of these features, the app engine was improved since¬†last release (v3.58.507) so it has a pretty fast cold launching app time compared with last year version, and all the latest iPhone 6/6 Plus and their HD resolution screens are also supported, making its daily use a gorgeous user experience ūüôā

I will mention that it includes a French Verb Conjugation on it. To use it, you only need to search for a French verb and click on the top dedicated conjugation icon. Then, you will not need to buy an extra app for this purpose.

Besides, for iOS8 users, it has also implemented the ‘extension‘ feature, so you can now look up words while reading in Safari, which is wonderful when you are reading foreign webs without being forced to switch between apps via multi-tasking.

And as daily heavy¬†user, I only can say that I am very glad of it, it works smoothly, the wording database is very complete (even for a “Basic” version as it is sold);¬†and as an important small user remark for a romance language, I found that the genders of the substantives are always correct (Male/Female), where in other also paid dictionaries (in the same price range) had some mistakes in their databases, leading to misunderstood to the user/student.

It is true that its¬†$19,99 price could seem quite high for some users, but if you are looking for a high quality and very reliable FR/SP¬†electronic dictionary to accompany you in all kind of situations; I would recommend any non-professional/translator user¬†this one without doubts, even as a long investment. ūüėČ

HOW TO define your own iOS custom ringtone

Nowadays most people mostly uses the default ringtones coming in the iOS, being most of them pretty good. But for all those who would like to have a more customized ringtone, and don’t want to pay twice in iTunes for the song and the ringtone, it is possible to make your own in few and easy steps.

You only need to follow these steps in your iTunes program (PC or Mac version):

1) Open your iTunes (PC/Mac) and choose the song from which you would like to make your own ringtone. As it must be 30 seconds maximum length; we will have to crop it, so listening several times to choose the section of it which you like more.

2) Now, right-click on the song, select ‚ÄėGet Info’, and then select the ‘Options’¬†tab. There, you will see Start and Stop¬†timing settings, and it is there where you will select/define the begin¬†and end time position (in seconds) for your custom ringtone. Once selected, click ‘OK’ to close the window.

iOS_ringtone_1

3) Next step will be to create an AAC version of the song, which is pretty easy as you only need to¬†right-click on it and select ‘Create AAC Version’. Then, you will have two songs with the same name, but one of only 30 seconds length; which I recommend you to change its name as I did in this example to don’t confuse it with the full length song:

iOS_ringtone_2

And before continuing, you can de-selecting the ‘Start’ and ‘Stop’ settings in the¬†original song to listen it fully next time.

By the way, if you get an error due your song still has DRM protection on it (as it was purchased before 2009 in old iTunes), you can follow this Apple tutorial to get the free-DRM version.

4) To be able to use it as ringtone, we need to find the file and rename it. On Mac you can¬†select ‘Show in Finder’, and in PC you can right-click on the song and click on ‘Show in Windows Explorer’:

iOS_ringtone_3

Then, with a simply right-click on the file, and selecting ‘rename’, you can change its file¬†extension from¬†.m4a to .m4r.

iOS_ringtone_4

5) And as final step, you do a double left-click on the ringtone file, and your custom ringtone (with .m4r extension) will be automatically added to your iTunes Tones library:

iOS_ringtone_5

Then, it is ready to be added to your iPhone/iPad next time that you synchronize them. Pretty easy! ūüėČ