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    Published On : Wed, Dec 30th, 2015
    Tech News | By Nagpur Today Nagpur News

    Your Top Tech Resolutions for 2016

    Technology resolutionsThis whole year, you must have faced few issues on technology front with your gadgets and you would have often vowed to get rid of it. As the New Year draws closer, Nagpur Today takes you towards some technology resolutions that make your ensuing year 2016 hassle free. Here you go…

    Boost Your Internet Connection
    For most users, the home internet connection usually has two basic issues: slow connection speed and poor WiFi coverage. For slow network speed, try and ask your providers for a faster connection. Broadband operators are introducing up to 50Mbps connections now. Or, you could just bridge (combine) multiple internet connections. To do this, we suggest you try out Connectify Speedify from www.speedify.com. The software gives you step by step instructions on how to combine your WiFi, DSL and 3G/4G connections. The free account limits you to 1GB of data transfer per month while paid plans start at US$9 per month.

    Coming to the range issue, WiFi routers are affected by multiple things — placement, brick walls, electronics, appliances and so on. All of this can lead to poor network coverage of WiFi signal in your home. To solve this issue you can go for a wireless extender. There are various options available from TPlink, D-link, Netgear starting at Rs 1,500 onwards. If your router has a WPS (WiFi Protected Setup) button, get a range extender with WPS and it only takes a minute.

    Make Your Music Wireless
    Many of us keep music collections or stream music from online services. However, to listen to music from your speaker system, you still need to connect your computer or your phone/tablet to it. An easier way out is to use Bluetooth for wireless streaming. Your phone, tablet and laptop already has Bluetooth built-in. For your speaker system, you can buy an inexpensive Bluetooth adapters that connect using the aux-in jack. We recommend the Logitech Bluetooth Audio adapter that offers a 3.5mm as well as RCA port to hook up to your existing stereo syste. It has a range of up to 15 meters and connects directly to power with the supplied wall charger.

    Get Smarter, Connected Lights
    Moving to LED lights from CFL is a move that is even being pushed by the government. LED bulbs offers more savings and have a higher lifespan. However, instead of just the regular bulbs, why not consider smart LED bulbs? The smart bulb installs like a standard bulb with added advantage that it can be controlled wirelessly from your phone (WiFi/Bluetooth). We like the Iota by Cube 26 (Rs 1,899). You can change the colours as per your preference, control multiple bulbs from a single device and even set it to blink for call/SMS notifications.

    The Easiest Way to Share Files Between Android & iOS
    Whether you own iOS and Android devices yourself or you want to share files with someone else on another platform, it can be a frustrating experience. Turns out, there’s an easy way you can share Gigabytes of data between iOS and Android with something like Sandisk’s Wireless Connect Stick. It looks like a conventional USB flash drive, albeit a large one. It has a built in battery and creates its own WiFi network. You can transfer any content from a computer over USB and get the free app on all your devices to share quickly and easily. Prices start at Rs 1,745 for the 16GB version.

    Give Your Multimedia Wings
    Your photos and videos shoudn’t have to be viewed on a small screen. For many Android phones, the easiest way to display your media on a larger screen (in a failsafe manner) is by using a wired connection. Check if your device has HDMI or MHL out. You can buy an MHL to HDMI adapter for as less as Rs 500. You will still need a separate HDMI cable if you don’t have one. This will simply mirror your screen on the TV (with sound). Other options are Miracast (wireless screen mirroring) but this will need additional hardware like a compatible media player. For iOS devices, the wired option exists in the form of a pricey Lightning AV adapter. But for the same price, you can also quickly do wireless mirroring or media streaming with AirPlay on an Apple TV box. AirPlay is an Apple proprietory technology and works really well if you want to stream photos/videos from your iPhone/iPad to a larger screen. As a bonus, you can also use it to mirror games.

    Pre-Protect Your Stuff
    Our personal gadgets (laptops, phones, tablets) are quite precious: not just because of their monetary value but because they store your entire personal and official life. Losing a phone/laptop and its recovery is one of the biggest concerns for many. Thankfully, you can prepare in advance to make your device theft proof. Prey (www. preyproject.com) is a free tool available for tracking your lost or stolen device. The free version lets you track up to 3 devices (phone/laptop/tablet) and can be installed on Windows, OS X, Linux, iOS and Android. Once installed, you can use Prey to track/locate, remote lock as well as remotely wipe your device in case its lost or stolen.

    Edit Your Videos Before Sharing
    Raw videos captured by a smartphone never make for very captivating viewing. The good part is, even basic smartphones are capable of editing videos quite easily. You can trim lengths, add video from different sources, add music tracks, voiceovers, captions and transitions. On Android, you should check out KineMaster. It’s a free app with full functionality but the videos will have a watermark (you pay to remove the watermark). If you have problems exporting the final video, try exporting in a lower resolution (720p HD or lower). On iOS, there’s nothing better than the built in iMovie — it’s optimised for your iDevices and makes quick work of editing. You can find handy step-by-step tutorial videos for both apps online if you get stuck. If you find iMovie on iOS too complicated, you can get another app called Videoshop (Rs 120). With Videoshop, you can easily trim, add sound effects, music, filters and subtitles. You can also share the edited videos from within the app itself.

    Charge Faster & Better
    Heavy users need to charge their devices multiple times a day. You should know that all wall chargers are not the same: some can charge your phone faster and this depends on how many amps it puts out. Look closely at the fine print on your charger. Typically it will have an output of 5 volts @1, 1.5 or 2 Amps. The 2 Ampere charger will charge faster than the other ones. Most computer USB ports only output 0.5 Amps and are hence much slower. If you need to charge multiple devices simultaneously, try the Portronics UFO charger (Rs 700) that provides 6 powered USB ports. And if your phone has wireless charging built in (like any of the flagship Samsung Galaxy phones, Nexus 5 or 6, Xperia Z3 and so on), you should get a fast wireless charger like Niilkin’s Magic Disk III (Rs 1,999). iPhone users shouldn’t feel left out either — Spigen offers a case for iPhones called the Slim Armor Volt with a built in Qi wireless charging receiver. It will work with any Qi charger like the Niilkin.

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