DigestMusicSoftwareWearable

Music.Photo.Tech.Digest: 25 Jan 2015

Writing this digest is keeping me disciplined. Every digest is actually completed within a morning. This is different from my other blogs where I could take several days to complete. This tests my spontaneity in producing articles, a refreshing challenge to cut down on procrastination,

This week, some product information and other mundane thoughts.

About Fitness Band and Android Lollipop Update

This week, I posted my review on the Huawei TalkBand B1. I’m still using it after I finished my review, and I still enjoy taking calls with it and snapping it back after that. What I do miss is the ability to recall last phone number and dial out, similar to what normal Bluetooth headsets could do. Also, adjust volume. What Huawei could do is to place these buttons on the other side of the headset.

I would have loved to revert to my cheap ZGPax S28 smartwatch if not for the fact that I had updated the HTC One M8 to Android Lollipop 5.0 which made the BTNotification app incompatible. Really missed the phone notification, so now I have to check my phone once a while. It does not help when the new Lollipop OS actually hid all notification icons on lock screen, which means I have to unlock the phone before I can see if I have any notifications, unless I turn on the feature to view notification cards in lock screen. No big deal. The new Lollipop interface is a refreshing change, I can’t say I love it to bits, but it’s new, and people tend to like new things.

About Indulging In Relaxing Piano Music

I need to share this again, in case you miss it. My new piano CD album, Piano Spa 7, is in stores and in iTunes. Why should you buy it?

Because it is my labour of love and you like to support me.
Because I’m not a celebrity or pop star to get huge sales easily, so every sale count.
Because I think people who are working hard deserves to de-stress.
Because you don’t like loud pumping music.
Because you like music to blend into what you are doing, not intrude.
Because you love relaxing music but not those ambient spa kind where you hear sounds of sea waves or birds or wind.

I was on leave on Friday, so I took time to rip some of my old Classical CDs, brings back memories as I listened to them. Classical music never runs out of style. So today I was playing them on the Sony SRS-X3 speaker (review next week), but they just don’t quite put me in focus. Classical music can get too dramatic with dynamic passages that might just scare you a bit here and there. Then when I switched to Piano Spa 7, ok it sounds really better (Jeez, I’d wish this was written by someone else because it sounded so pushy that I am saying all these right, like, selling my wares).

Buy from iTunes or physical CD.

Windows 10 is Coming in 2015

Microsoft made a big announcement this week on Windows 10. Yep, they skipped “9” because they claim this is one huge change in the operating system mindset. First of all, existing Windows 7 to 8.1 owners can get FREE upgrade for the first year when it is officially launched. Second, the same OS will be running on all Windows platforms – phone, tablets, laptops, desktops. Also, Windows 10 will have a greater presence in more Windows products, like Xbox, Office. I am looking forward to tighter convergence between smartphones and desktops, and that could really swing a handful of consumers to Windows Phone.

I leave the heavy stuff for your reading at the official Windows 10 site.

WhatsApp Web – Here Finally

You can finally use WhatsApp on your laptop or desktop, via Chrome web browser. The caveat is that your smartphone from which the actual WhatsApp app is running must be connected online. Once the web session is connected, it will remain persistent, so the session automatically re-connects when you re-open the browser again in future. Available for users on Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry, Nokia S60. No iPhone. Visit web.whatsapp.com for more info on how to use.

This is the first big step, and I am sure WhatsApp will enhance this capability to maybe a standalone desktop app. Frankly, this could drive me back to use WhatsApp again after advocating Telegram for all these months. But Telegram is still superior because I can use it across multiple smartphones, whereas WhatsApp is only extending the single smartphone session to multiple browsers. So I still got the hassle of migrating my database from one smartphone to another, and I cannot liberally access Whatsapp from another smartphone. The only thing Telegram lacks is the adoption rate.

FantaStick BA700 – Premium Selfie Stick

Is selfie stick still in-thing? Here’s one that is bright-coloured and comes with a power bank, so you have more excuse to carry one around. Selling at $89 each at ante@Tangs Orchard Level 3, EpiCentre, EpiLife and istudio.

ASUS GTX960 $369, free ASUS Strix mousepad

ASUS has launched a new graphics card with “exclusive ASUS technologies, including DirectCU II for cooler, quieter and faster performance for incredible action gaming, and 0dB fan technology for totally-silent light gameplay. The new card features feature exclusive ASUS Super Alloy Power components for enhanced durability and cooling, and GPU Tweak with XSplit Gamecaster for overclocking and online streaming that’s as simple as it is flexible. Strix GTX 960 comes equipped with a DisplayPort interface to support connections up to 4K/UHD (ultra-high definition) resolution.”

OK, you can tell the above is taken from the PR material right? But the gist is that this is another graphics card for your consideration if you are into gaming. I’m not. In any case, if you are a gamer and you are interested, I’m not the best resource to give you more info. There is one awesome place you can do your research, and that is GOOGLE search engine. I’m betting you there are tons of information out there, including specs, reviews, benchmarks, etc.

adMingle

I got approached via email by adMingle to join them to monetize my blog. adMingle is another influencer marketing network, just like Nuffnang or GushCloud. Although adMingle is new to Singapore, they are a global company with presence in the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Russia, Holland, Israel.

Companies are constantly trying to entice bloggers to monetize their online influence. Sounds good? I beg to differ. By joining these program, you are gradually distancing yourself from freedom to blog what you want. Here’s the paradox: the reason for blogging is to share what you love, and NOT for money (unless you are going for the money). The purpose of joining these programs is to make money. So, if you start getting loads of campaigns, do you choose to decline (and not make money), or do you choose to accept (and not blog freely about topics you love)? Even if the campaign topic is within your area of interest, would you have the mental freedom to really write what you want, or would you be trying to put a few good words to increase the popularity of the post and therefore increase the conversion rate (and monetary rewards)?

Having said that, this program still works for some bloggers – bloggers with sizable followers who interacts actively with the blogger content. With a simple post with relatively low effort, these bloggers can get the kind of response that easily makes money. But for the majority of the bloggers who do not have such enthusiastic followers, I wouldn’t waste time writing blog posts that I am enticed to just because of the possibility that it can make some money (when it probably won’t).

Despite my opinion over this, I am happy to share this with you, and for those who really want to earn money from blogging, this is one one company you can consider joining. Visit their website to read more.

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