Top 5 Twitter features launched in 2013

Twitter rolled out a number of updates in 2013. We take a look at the top five updates/features launched by the micro-blogging website this year.

Top 5 Twitter features launched in 2013

Top 5 Twitter features launched in 2013

Twitter entered its seventh year of existence this year. In 2013, we saw Twitter making some major changes to the micro-blogging site, with a special emphasis on non-text content and on mobile platforms. Twitter also rolled out two-step log in in attempt to prevent security breaches. Features such as Twitter alerts helped users get critical information when they needed the most. We take a look at the top 5 updates/features rolled out by Twitter this year:


Twitter kicked off 2013 with Vine – a new service that lets you capture and share short (six-seconds) looping videos. Users can use Vine on their iOS and Android smartphones to capture motion and sound – giving a very GIF like experience. Twitter’s Vine prompted Instagram to launch its own short-video sharing service. Also read: Hands On With Vine

Twitter Alerts

In a bid to make the micro-blogging site more socially relevant, Twitter launched Alerts service. The new feature allows Twitter users to access critical and accurate information from credible organisations in cases of emergencies, natural disasters or situations where other communication services aren’t available.

Improved photos experience

As said before, Twitter rolled out quite a few updates to improve photos experience on the network. Now, Twitter shows previews of pictures and videos from Vine. Photos experience in embedded posts has also improved – as pictures now appear larger when embedded. Moreover, users can click the photo to check out the conversation behind the Tweet. There is also an option to interact with embedded Tweets. Also, now users can send and receive photos via direct messages.

Older tweets in search results

Twitter made it easier for users to find their older tweets on the network. Prior to the update, search results displayed about a week-old only. Now, you can search content that’s beyond the recent Tweets.

Custom Timelines

One of the most interesting features on Twitter rolled out this year is custom timelines. Similar to storify, the feature lets you create a timeline, give it a name and choose which Tweets to add manually or automatically using an API. Different from the regular Twitter lists, custom timelines, featuring tweets that users want to add in their timeline, not subsequent tweets from their authors.

In 2014, Twitter users can expect a wide range of new features. One of the most anticipated features on Twitter is ability to edit tweets. Expected to be available early next year, the edit feature help you prevent embarrassments due to erroneous posts or typo errors and wrath of grammar Nazis. Mobile users are likely to be most benefited.

Which is your favourite Twitter update this year? What new feature/features do you expect from Twitter in 2014? Let us know in the comments section below:

Credit: ThinkDigit

BBM for Android clocks 10 million downloads; no more waiting list

The application clocked 1 million downloads on Android the first day. But the waiting list was a bit of an annoyance, which has now been removed, for iOS as well as Android users.

BBM for Android clocks 10 million downloads; no more waiting list

BBM for Android clocks 10 million downloads; no more waiting list

BlackBerry Messenger for Android shows no signs of slowing down, with the application crossing 10 million downloads on Android alone, worldwide. However, not everyone who downloaded BBM on their Android or iOS devices could sign in immediately, because BlackBerry had deployed the waiting list method for a majority of users to ensure there was no repeat of the server load issues that the first release attempt faced. However, that test of patience has now been removed as well, with anyone downloading BBM on their smartphone can now sign up / sign in immediately.

The popularity of BBM during this initial phase of availability can be measured by the respective app stores’ rating of the app. Apple’s App Store lists BBM in the top three free apps listing, while Google Play Store has it at the top spot in the Top New Free Android Apps list, at least at the time of writing this.

BBM’s popularity on Android and iOS is critical good news for BlackBerry, particularly because the company was betting big on huge download numbers to get the cross platform BBM on the map, where Whatsapp leads at the moment.

You can download BBM on your iOS or Android device directly from the application store on the device itself.



Yahoo Mail’s Sweet 16 Is Sweet: A brand new view

Today is Yahoo Mail’s sweet 16, and to celebrate we’re making our Mail experience elegant and intuitive on desktop, iOS, and Android.

We’re introducing “conversations” for those who prefer to view emails grouped in threads. At the end of the day, being able to see an entire conversation can save you quite a bit of time. Context is king.



We redesigned Yahoo Mail to be more efficient, too. Things you do all of the time like search, starring, and deleting are now one-click actions that appear when you hover over an email. We also wanted to give you more breathing room in your inbox, so you can collapse the left-hand toolbar to be more productive.

Since it’s not a birthday without party favors, we’re making many features previously reserved for premium Mail Plus customers free. Disposable email addresses, enhanced filters and automatic message forwarding are now available for everyone. And if that wasn’t enough, we’re giving you a monstrous amount of storage, 1TB (that’s 1,000 GBs), so you have ample space for all your emails and attachments. It sure beats one of those annoying noisemakers. Current Mail Plus customers can continue to use Mail Plus and can learn more here.

Finally, we wanted to bring a little inspiration into your inbox — dress it up a bit if you will.  We’re doing that by introducing visually rich themes, including curated Flickr photos, for your browser, smartphone and tablet. Choose a new photo theme in one place, and it will apply across all your devices. After all, your inbox doesn’t have to be a plain white box with text dropped into it.



This new desktop experience is available in English in the US, Canada, UK, Philippines, Malaysia, India, Ireland, New Zealand and South Africa with more countries and languages coming soon. The mobile apps are available globally today on iOS, Android and Windows 8.




We hope you enjoy this additional inspiration, on Yahoo Mail — an inbox with a view.  Read a bit more about the new features on the Yahoo Mail tumblr.


Benchmark performance: iOS 6 vs iOS 7 on the iPhone 5

With iOS 7 now available for iPhone users, we have been getting queries asking if there has been any performance impact, negative or positive, after the upgrade to the latest OS. We attempt to answer those questions with the help of benchmarks.

Benchmark performance: iOS 6 vs iOS 7 on the iPhone 5

Benchmark performance: iOS 6 vs iOS 7 on the iPhone 5

Apple has made iOS 7 officially available now for the iPhones, the iPad and the latest generation iPod Touch. There are the fans, and there are those criticizing it, but one thing cannot be disputed – this is the biggest iOS upgrade in years. The changes are significant, with the most visible one being the new UI. Hence, the inevitable question – how is the performance of the new OS?

Users have been asking us this query for quite some time now, but we refrained from pronouncing any judgement on iOS 7’s performance while it was in the various pre-launch stages. However, now that the final version is out, we have run a series of benchmark tests on the iPhone 5 running the iOS 6.1.4 version, before upgrading OTA to iOS 7 and running the same benchmarks again, after checking for any updates for them, individually.

To ensure that no benchmark run had any advantage or disadvantage, all the tests across both OSes were run on the same device, with the exact same settings. We even ensured that something like Bluetooth was switched off at all times. The applications installed remained consistent across all benchmark runs, on both iOS versions. We manually closed all apps that were running in the background, so that the app load didn’t have a bearing on the performance and the resources. For the browser benchmark tests, we hooked up the phone to the same Wi-Fi network, with no other device connected to the hotspot at that time.


To break it down even further, we have subdivided the tests into categories – system performance, graphics performance and web browser performance.

System Performance: Better memory handling makes the difference
The Passmark Mobile Performance Test registers a lower system score in iOS 7, but critically, better read and write scores for both the internal storage as well as the memory. This is critical, because for most tasks that don’t need raw processor power, the read and write speeds make all the difference between smooth performance and a sluggish setup. The CPU score also goes up with iOS 7, showing that the new OS is ever so slightly better optimized. We mention that the overall system score goes down, but that could be a factor of the graphics tests that the benchmark runs, which we will not pay much attention to since we have dedicated graphics benchmark tests coming up.

Passmark Performance Test Mobile
iOS 6.1.4 iOS 7 % Difference
System Score 3932 3603 -8
CPU Score 24922 25418 2
Disk Score 13154 13480 2
Read (in Mbyte/s) 44.9 44 -2
Write (in Mbyte/s) 157 164 4
Memory Score 2998 3295 10
Read (in Mbyte/s) 517 566 9
Write (in Mbyte/s) 509 569 12
2D Score 1641 1250 24
3D Score 1756 1762 -0.34

The second system test, GeekBench, also verifies what PassMark says about the better processor performance, with the multi-core utilization tests showing up a higher score than on iOS 6.

iOS 6.1.4 iOS 7 % Difference
Single Core Score 722 722 0.00
Multi-Core Score 1298 1302 -0.31

Graphics Performance: Improves slightly 
While not everyone likes to game on their iPhone, there are those who do. And they were served rather well by the very smooth performance and experience that iOS 6 offered with this particular hardware. After the iOS 7 upgrade, the 3D Mark Ice Storm and the 3D Mark Ice Storm Ultimate benchmark tests register slightly better scores, while the Ice Storm Extreme score remains the same. Simply put, the excellent exiting performance via iOS 6 improves even further with the new operating system.

3D Mark
iOS 6.1.4 iOS 7 % Difference
Ice Storm 5418 6011 11
Ice Storm Extreme 3351 3351 0.00
Ice Storm Ultimate 5516 5711 4

GFX Benchmark did give a slightly different analysis, with one test registering pretty much the same frames and fps scores, while the the second test saw a drop in both frames and fps.

GFX Bench
iOS 6.1.4 iOS 7 % Difference
Egypt HD (Offscreen) – Frames 3357 3358 0.3
Egypt HD (Offscreen) – fps 30 30 0.00
Egypt HD (Onscreen) – Frames 4572 4185 -8
Egypt HD (Onscreen) – fps 40 37 -8

Browser Test: Safari sees an improvement, mostly visual elements
The SunSpider 1.01 browser benchmark shows slightly better performance, in terms of Java performance. And for a web browser, even negligible differences can sometimes make lot of difference, and in this case, it seems to be working.

Sunspider 1.01 
Safari on iOS 6.1.4 Safari on iOS 7
Score (lower is better) 729.1ms 707.7ms

From the scores, it is clear that the performance difference between iOS 6 and iOS 7, at least on the iPhone 5 hardware, is not much. Critically, it shows a very slight improvement in areas like memory and storage access speeds, which make for an improvement in the overall speed and experience. All in all, you can safely upgrade your iPhone to the latest OS, with no fear of a performance drop, at least on the iPhone 5.

Have you updated you iPhone or iPad or the latest iPod Touch with iOS 7? We would like to hear your experience.



Woah! iOS 7 adoption just beat iOS 6, report shows

Woah! iOS 7 adoption just beat iOS 6, report shows

Woah! iOS 7 adoption just beat iOS 6, report shows

Apple’s new mobile operating system launched this week to highly mixed reviews. VentureBeat’s John Koetsier found much to dislike about iOS 7, but adoption rates are skyrocketing.

An analytics startup called Mixpanel has been tracking iOS 7 adoption and usage, in comparison to iOS 6. Apple fans have remained loyal to iOS6, but an increasing number are giving the newer operating system a shot.

Mixpanel’s chief executive Suhail Doshi just alerted us to the fact that iOS 7 just eclipsed iOS 6 for the first time.

Check out the full trend report here. 

iOS 7 beat iOS 6 at around 3.30pm PT.


iOS 7 beat iOS 6 at around 3.30pm PT.

Mixpanel is tracking global mobile usage — Doshi said the data is based on 2.8 billion actions of people using thousands of mobile applications.

It’s also worth noting that there are discrepancies in different markets. In China, for instance, the new operating system has struggled to take off. But adoption has been far quicker in the United States.

The new operating system appears to have inspired a bit of a love/hate response from consumers and the press. It’s the largest visual overhaul since Apple first introduced the iPhone in 2007. The updates include a personable male voice from Siri, icon tweaking and polishing, and a new built-in flashlight.

“It looks like Apple proved its design won over its customers,” he said. “That’s surprising given how drastic it was.”

Have you switched over to the new operating system? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.


iPhone 5S User Guide has ‘Touch ID Sensor’

Apple is expected to unveil the iPhone 5S and a cheaper iPhone 5C model at a press event on September 10, 2013. This new smartphone may look like just another iPhone but it’s more than that.

iphone 5s gold

iphone 5s gold

The new iPhone appears to have a combination “Home button/Touch ID sensor”. Leaked images of new iPhone indicate the location of the “Lightning connector”, “Silver ring around home button”, “Volume buttons”, and “Sleep/Wake button.” image

The new smartphone is also expected to have an improved display for “increased brightness and/or reduced power consumption. It’s been reported that smartphone would have a Retina + Sharp IGZO display.

According to the leaked specs, the smartphone will include a faster processor iOS 7, an NFC reader, a Fingerprint Reader, a 4-inch 1136 × 640 display and a new 12 megapixel backside camera with dual LED flash. The new handset will also include 2GB of RAM, a quad-core SGX 554MP4 GPU, an A6 CPU and improved LTE. It also has a bigger battery than its predecessor.

It’s well known that one of the key battlegrounds of smartphone warfare is the specifications of the on-board camera. And as per reports, Apple will launch the 5S with a 13MP camera to give tough competition to other smartphone’s like Sony Xperia Z and Galaxy S4.

Leaked images have been surfacing all over the internet and show that iPhone would be offered in several color choices. There are many speculations about the smartphone hardware as iPhone 5C would be introduced as a less expensive alternative. As per reports, the shell or casing of this smartphone will be plastic, to save money.

Other leaked images have focused on the new (and still rumoured) champagne gold iPhone 5s option. Some of the latest images show the champagne gold option with the rumoured dual-flash.

The new iPhone is expected to land in stores around 20th September.

iOS 7 release date confirmed by company behind Siri

Nuance, the company behind Siri, confirms iOS 7 release date in an email sent out to developers.

iOS 7 release date confirmed by company behind Siri

iOS 7 release date confirmed by company behind Siri

After a couple of months of heated conversations and adrenaline fueled debates on its looks and design, the seventh version of iOS, Apple’s venerable mobile operating system, will, in all probability, be made available for general consumption on September 10. The date was leaked online through an email sent by Nuance, the company responsible for Siri, the voice assistant on iPhones and iPads, to Owen Williams, a developer. In the email, Nuance informs developers, “As you are probably aware, iOS 7 GA (which stands for General Availability) will be released on September 10th.” The email which was live on Nuance’s servers has now been taken down but it’s highly unlikely that it contained incorrect information considering the fact that Nuance works very closely with Apple.

iOS 7 will mark the biggest change for the mobile operating systemin terms of looks and design. Under the direction of Jony Ive, the Senior Vice President of Design at Apple, iOS will forsake skeuomorphism (design that emulates real-world objects, for e.g. textures that resemble wood or metal) and go for a flatter, cleaner design. The response from the public and the media since the new design was unveiled at WWDC 2013 has been polarizing, to put it mildly. We’ve seen quite a bit of criticism towards iOS 7 with many calling it too colourful and visually inconsistent while others have praised Apple for taking a risk in changing up the look of an OS that had started to look staid.

When all is said and done, it doesn’t really matter what the media or commenters say until the final product is out there and in the hands of consumers. That’s why, September 10 can’t come soon enough.

Source: Owen Williams’ Blog via The Verge

Best iPhone Games

Best iPhone Games

Best iPhone Games

With around 900,000 apps available now for download in iTunes app store, gaming options are almost limitless. In the ocean of games for iPhone, a few are worth while the others aren’t. We’ve taken on burden of sorting via the endless games in order to get you what we consider are best iPhone games from the intense comfort gamer to casual word puzzle aficionado.

It’s now safe to state that Apple’s gaming industry is a square kick within tender regions. Free games look to increase in number every time we load the App Store; however so many top titles feel same as cynical business plan in disguise. Fortunately, there’s plethora of gratis integrity to get on the iPhone: the games which offer a solid quantity of entertaining game play.

Despite their protest, dismissing Apple in all possible way, Nintendo and Sony both are concerned clearly by the meteoric increase of iPhone as the handheld gaming devices.

Though great games are driving force behind success of the Apple gaming, low prices also have helped. The majority ‘premium’ titles cost only six quid or even less, and lots of developers finish up in the race to 69p, thus providing best iPhone games which would price 20 quid on rival platform for price of one Kit-Kat. However what if you spent even the last of the cash on your Apple object of wish? Can you get superb games for nothing to pay at all, or ‘free’ section of App Store ignored?

1. Dropship

This superb ngmoco title cost a very few quid, but Dropship now is free and it is one amongst the App Store’s largest bargains. This game is a current take on Thrust or Gravitar, with your ship fighting shooting gun emplacements and gravity while searching compound vector-based cave formation for marooned allies.

Its dual-thumb ‘touch anywhere’ controls take a few getting used to, however the game feels exciting and fluid once they’re mastered.

2. Flood-It! 2

This is one amongst the best iPhone games available for free. It meets all the rules of large puzzlers: keep the things simple, and make the game very challenging so that your brains begin to dribble out from your ears. In this game, you tap the colors to ‘flood’ board from top-left, intending to make the whole board of one single colour using limited number of the taps.

This release provides additional modes over original Flood-It! (obstacles, timers, finishing with defined color), and offers many schemes for the color-blind players.!-2/id476943146?mt=8

3. Dr. Awesome Plus

Dr. Awesome Plus, another ngmoco game, uses a vile forced Plus+ account log in, but get that past and you find compulsive title which smashes together the primeval arcade classic Qix along with surgery game Trauma’s Centre. Dr. Awesome’s gameplay focuses around removing the viruses by tilting the device for ‘cutting out’ infections.

Gameplay tends to be furious and fast and, unusually, the Address Book contacts will be used for patient name, so you always can select to give up your high scores and off your bosses in virtual world.

4. Cube Runner

Accelerometers in Apple handheld have driven growth of the tilt-based myriad racing games; however tilt control can be fastidious. However, Cube Runner feels just accurate as you direct your craft right and left through cube-littered landscape, aiming to stay alive for as much long as probable. The game doesn’t looks like much; however, it plays well, plus longevity is also extended by this game enabling you to generate and download different new levels.

5. Sol Free Solitaire

Though it essentially is a portion of Solebon Solitaire, Sol Free Solitaire nonetheless is a striking example of standalone solitaire game which is one among the best iPhone games. From the instant you first launch this game, level of attention and polish to detail is clear. In all the included games, all the graphics are clear and clean, the controls are responsive and intuitive, and the integral help is revealing.

6. Real Racing GTi

Firemint Real Racing is known to be one among the best iPhone games of racing, but it’s demanding also, requiring lots of time investment. This Real Racing GTi bestows with much of depth, but retains the parent’s fun gameplay, great graphics and user-friendly controls.

It’s probably worth noting that this game is a free game to play. It’s far more superior than GTi, but it also is rather IAP-happy, thus be warned.  It has 3 modes on offer – quick race, time trial, and cup championship over 3 tracks—ensuring that this game is one of the best iPhone games as arcade racer on App Store.

7. Spider: Hornet Smash

Hornet Smash includes one level from the game. Tiger Style’s Spider, but its major draw is the frantic arcade minigame. Controlling our 8-legged hero still, the plan is to ward off attacks by the swarms of annoyed hornets, while munching tasty lacewings and weaving webs for health boosts. Overall, three environments are integrated in this innovative and compelling title.

8. Dactyl

Almost completely lacking in depth, the Dactyl is however one amongst the most feverishly addictive and best iPhone games there on App Store. A splendidly demented Whack-A-Mole– effort, Dactyl simply tasks you by tapping red bombs so as to stop them from exploding.

Almost instantaneously, though, the red bombs arrive fast and thick, forcing to keep a track and strike them so as to avoid inevitable ‘game over’.

9. MazeFinger Plus

The forced Plus+ account’s sign-up is terrible, but it’s worth persistent to get to an addictive like this, where you “unleash awesome power of fingers,” according to App Store blurb.

Actually the plan is to drag the fingers from the beginning to finish of every simple maze. The trouble is you’re against clock and obstacles come in your path. 200 levels and Great graphics of compelling gameplay make sure you’ll be glued definitely to your screen.

10. Trace

This is a sweet, creative platform game that has you navigating obstacles to reach star-shaped exit. A twist is that you’ll draw and erase platforms, to support your advancement. With a focus on time-based score rather than lives and ability to skip the levels, Trace is extremely much ‘casual’ platform game; however, it’s none the inferior because of it.

4 Best WhatsApp Messenger Alternatives


WhatsApp Messenger is a very famous and widely known is a cross-platform mobile messaging app. It has more than 250 million active monthly users, which means a ver strong user base. But they have some healthy competitors who are about to capture market.

One best feature of WhatsApp is that it integrates with your existing phone address book and there’s no need to log in and out as you are always connected. If you miss a push notification, messages can be saved offline for later retrieval, and other features include location sharing, contact exchange, custom wallpaper, custom notification sounds and much more.

WhatsApp Alternatives

For those who are unable to have WhatsApp or looking for some other messaging apps can try any of the following alternatives.


wechatA famous and widely known alternate to WhatsApp is WeChat, a mobile text and voice messaging communication service. WeChat provides free texting, voice messaging, broadcast messaging, photo/ video sharing and location sharing. WeChat is supported on Wi-Fi, 2G, 3G, and 4G data networks. WeChat has over 300 million users already.

WeChat gives you live chat option, backup and restoring chat history and an option to invite your friends to a WeChat group chat via QR code.


lineA new communication app for instant messaging which is available on both smartphones and PCs across multiple carriers and operating systems including iOS, Android, Nokia Asha, Windows phone, BlackBerry, Windows and Mac. It allows you to make free voice calls and free messages. Line has reached 200 million users worldwide by July 21, 2013. Line has been ranked no. 1 in the free app category in 52 countries including Japan, Thailand, Taiwan, Spain, China, Indonesia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Switzerland, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Russia, Macau, United Arab Emirates and many more!

Some of the highlighted features are multi-platform, optional address book syncing, real-time confirmation for messages sent and delivered, sharing photos, videos, music and more, sending current or any specific location, sending stickers and emoticons to friends, Bulletin boards (up to 100 people at once) for groups, adding friends through NFC by shaking their phones, direct Pop-out message box for easier reading and replying, and many more!


bbmBlackBerry Messenger (BBM) is an instant messenger and video telephony app that allows messaging (and video calls for BlackBerry 10 smartphones) between BlackBerry users.

Making video calls over Wi-Fi or the mobile network on BlackBerry 10 smartphones, sending and receiving messages with unlimited length, choosing a personal BBM display picture and status, Real-time confirmations on messages delivered and read, sharing photos, videos and more with multiple contacts at once, adding contacts by scanning QR Codes, Sending music files, Free Calling BBM contacts over Wi-Fi, etc. are some of the features offered by BBM to its users. The news is BBM may be available on Android / iPhone in few months which is really a fab news for BBM enthusiasts.


hikeHike is an instant messaging app for Android that lets you chat for free with any other user of the service. It has recently crossed 5 million user base. Hike has added three new features which include adding stickers, walkie-talkie, last seen and ability to message friends when they’re offline.

Day by day the competition among these apps is getting more intense, let’s see who takes the no. 1 position in instant messaging. Many of you have already used these apps, so please share your valuable comments with us.

Chennai Express: Escape from Rameshwaram game launched for Android and Java

Disney UTV‘s digital arm has launched a new game called Chennai Express: Escape from Rameshwaram for Android and Java devices.

Chennai Express: Escape from Rameshwaram game launched for Android and Java

Chennai Express: Escape from Rameshwaram game launched for Android and Java

‘Chennai Express’ Shahrukh Khan’s forthcoming movie has come to your mobile phones in the form of a game. The game has been launched for Android and Java users for now and an iOS version is also expected soon.

‘Chennai Express: Escape from Rameshwaram’ game belongs to the running genre and looks similar to games like Temple Run andSubway Surfers among others. Users will be able to take control of Rahul (SRK in Chennai Express) while he runs and tries to escape Rameshwaram.

On the way you will have to fight goons and run past a variety of obstacles ranging from trucks, buses, autos, coconut carts, man-holes and much more. Users can also unlock a special lungi-clad Tamilian game avatar of Deepika Padukone avatar by collecting more than 10,000 coins in one game session. You will also get special power ups and upgrades in future updates of the game.

Sameer Ganapathy, COO – Digital, Disney UTV, said, ‘Gaming is amongst the highest consumed forms of entertainment on mobile phones today. What better way to reach out to the ever growing mobile phone audience than to give them the opportunity to play as Shah Rukh Khan themselves!’

Shahrukh Khan said in a statement, ‘The Chennai Express game captures the theme, the graphics and the mood of the movie brilliantly.’

Users can download the Chennai Express: Escape from Rameswaram game for Android and Java. A new version of the game for iOS is also expected at the time of movie release. Chennai Express will be released in theaters on August 9th, 2013.

Source: TOI