After the jump, is an interesting read from Jaime Rivera of Pocketnow.com. But first, we have to make it clear that didn’t write the post below and neither are we claiming any ownership of the post published by the good people at Pocketnow.com.
We’re posting Rivera’s work here because 1) we agree with all of the things mentioned in his article and 2) we’re posting his work here so you can offer your thoughts and give some local perspective on this very interesting discussion.
Has Apple really lost the plot? Or has the landscape changed so much and become so competitive that it is increasingly difficult for any one brand to really stand out? Has Google’s Android finally come of age and taken over? Or will iOS 6 and the new iPhone reaffirm Apple’s dominant position the mobile race?
Head over to after the jump for the full article.
A screen protector is just an overpriced plastic sheet that does very little in protecting the screen of your prized smartphone. Sure it’ll keep the screen of your phone free from scratches but drop your phone on the pavement and there’s really nothing much a flimsy screen protector can do to protect it from the impact. That is unless you use Buff – a screen protector that is incredibly tough, capable of withstanding knocks from a mug, a hammer and even a brick.
What makes the Buff screen protector special is its construction which consists of four impact absorbing and dispersing layers. This special construction not only make the Buff screen protector tough as nails but also help it reduce air bubbles trapped beneath the protector if the protector is not properly applied. Buff says unsightly bubbles will disappear within 24-48 hours, depending on room temperature.
Wondering where you can get a Buff screen protector? Currently, no one knows how or where to get one. At this point, they don’t appear to be available on the BUFF website, although word has it that these ultra-tough screen protectors are going for around US$20 — $30 around the web. Good luck finding one. And if you do find one, let us know.
This iPhone 4 case from Vans is sub-zero cool. The rubber case features Vans’ signature waffle sole and other details that make a pair of Vans loafers so timelessly iconic. We particularly like that “Off the Wall” heel tag.
The Vans Rubber Waffle edition iPhone 4 case retails for US$28 but as you would imagine, the casing is flaying off the shelves so sourcing for one is going to be a challenge. If you’re desperate for one, there are a few on sale on eBay going for US$100 — ouch!
More pictures of the case after the jump.
This is interesting. Information from a tipster that wants to remain anonymous has revealed that work on Bahasa Malaysia support for Siri is now underway.
The tipster claims that work on gathering speech samples in Bahasa Malaysia have been completed sometime before the second half of this year. The samples were collected in Malaysia. The tipster added that the collation of samples for languages in various other countries is going on in as well. However, what the other languages were not specified.
Our informant says that there is no indication of when BM language support will be released.
If this is indeed true then it will certainly increase Siri’s usability in Malaysia but as we’ve discovered, local language support doesn’t mean that Siri is able to offer location-based information. In addition to that, due to the conversational method in which you interact with Siri, it still remains to be seen if the speech recognition software is able to interpret the generally colloquial manner in which Malaysians speak Bahasa Malaysia.
This is critical because Siri can forget about us all speaking proper textbook Bahasa because, let’s be honest here, that’s not going to happen. Many would rather revert to English rather than speak textbook BM to a phone.
So what do you think? Will Siri in BM be useful? Don’t forget to check out our Siri review as well, and if you’ve been waiting for the iPhone 4S to come to Malaysia, keep your browser locked on to SoyaCincau.com for the latest information about the iPhone 4S launch in Malaysia. If twitter is more your thing, we’re there as well, follow us @Soya_Cincau for the freshest servings of mobile tech news, reviews and analysis in Malaysia.
Sekian Terima Kasih.
Other than the improved camera, which has now been bumped up to 8MP with improved optics and a backlit sensor (from 5MP on the iPhone 4), the one feature that’s gotten everyone (including Malaysians) talking about the iPhone 4S is Siri.
At the unveiling of the iPhone 4S, it wasn’t the faster dual-core processor or the new iOS 5 operating system that got everyone talking, it was the voice recognition software that took centre stage. Siri is unique among voice recognition applications because it has the ability to not only understand what you say but also know what you mean when you say it.
With Siri, you don’t merely say commands like how you would with Vlingo or Google’s Voice Actions. With Siri you converse with the software and it talks back as if it was having a conversation with you. Siri doesn’t merely scour the web to look for answers, Siri crafts tailor-made responses for you and this makes Siri special amongst voice recognition software.
Along with this high degree of sophistication comes a multitude of things that you can get Siri to do for you. With Siri you can set reminders, set alarm and timers, you can send a text message or an email, check the weather, look for information on the web, schedule meetings, play your favourite music, find a contact in your phone, get directions and few more other things.
All this is fine and dandy but there’s a catch. You can only get Siri’s full functionality in the US. Many of the cool features you see in the Apple videos about Siri don’t work in Malaysia and many other countries outside of the US. In fact Siri can only understand three languages, English (in three accents – US, British and Australian) French and German. With such a limited scope, we initially resigned the Siri as just a gimmick from Apple – something that is definitely a conversation starter and interesting but not very practical or useful.
But is it?
To find out whether Siri is useful for iPhone 4S users outside of the US, especially in Malaysia we took the iPhone 4S for a spin.
While Siri struggles with Japanese, surprisingly Indian accent works remarkably well. India has just gotten the iPhone 4S today and one of the early adopters had put it to the test. So far so good but not surprising since the most Indians are well versed in English in the first place.
Accent and proficiency is key but at least we know Siri is able to recognise Indian accent. For the general Malaysian, it might be a challenge for those with not so perfect proficiency with mix of Malaysian lingo.
[ SOURCE ]
While waiting for the iPhone 4S to show up in Malaysia, the iPhone 4 8GB version is finally available in Malaysia. It is currently selling through Apple’s Online Store for RM1,799 in both Black and White colour options. Best of all, there’s no tie in with any telco so you can pop in any micro-SIM of your choice without any lock-in contract.
Looking at the bigger picture, this may very well indicate that the iPhone 4S will be coming in very soon. In September last year, the iPhone 3GS 8GB version was offered in Malaysia 24 days before the iPhone 4 was launched by both Maxis and DiGi. Your guess is as good as ours but it is highly possible for the iPhone 4S to arrive in the next month or so.
For more info, head over Apple’s iPhone 4 page.
Thanks “Hadip” for the heads up!
9to5Mac has done just that and they have ported it over. From the video, it appears to be very sluggish and the commands doesn’t seem to work at the moment. There are 2 possibilities, one being a processor limitation or perhaps the lack of drivers required for Siri to work as an integrated part of the iPhone 4 OS. While both are running iOS 5, Apple normally strips some functionality and features on older devices.
On actual usage, it doesn’t help right now since Apple servers are only authenticating Siri requests sent from iPhone 4S devices only. Technically, Siri should be able to work on previous iOS devices as it was originally a standalone app.
Since the iPad 2 has a dual core A5 processor, we wonder why didn’t Apple extend Siri for tablet users.
[ SOURCE ]
What did we tell you about Siri having problems with the way Asians speak English? Check out this video showing the usually articulate Siri struggling to understand an English-speaking Japanese guy.
Siri is awesome but probably not so in other countries. How would think Siri will fair with the way we Malaysians speak English?
Bonus video: See how Siri fails with Singlish as well after the jump.
We have a hypothesis, Sony Ericsson Xperia phones, especially the Xperia arc, play and ray all have one exceptional feature — all three devices make very clear phone calls.
We based this on our experience with the three devices and comparing it with the many other devices that we’ve reviewed. Time and time again, the dual-mic Xperias shine through in the call quality department.
Calls on the dual-mic Xperias are always loud and clear in any situations. Another thing that we’ve notice is that the Xperia emit this faint but noticeable feeback of your own voice in the speaker so you know that the phone’s microphone is picking up your voice clearly. It’s difficult to describe in words but those of you who are using Xperia arc, play or ray, the next time you’re on a call try to listen to the feedback, you can hear yourself in the speaker.
It sounds weird but it is something you need to experience to understand and appreciate.
Anyway…based on this, we set out to put our hypothesis to the test. So, we took an Xperia ray, an iPhone 4 and a Plantronics Discovery 975 Bluetooth headset and made calls in different environments to test the active noise cancellation feature on each device. Here are our findings.