Tom's Blog

My weird and wonderful blog…



We’ll be back right after this short break


Greetings humans, I’ve been quite occupied with my current job however I should start writing the article that will be the death of me soon (My Samsung Galaxy S3/Android switcharoo).

In the meantime, keep breaking the rules.

PS: Thought I’d add the kitten photo because nobody can stay mad at a kitten…


Apple’s iPhone 5 announcement coming tomorrow…


So if you read anything into the image above, Apple is going to be announcing their “new” and “revolutionary” phone, the iPhone 5. We’ll be reading the liveblogs and you can check them out too to see what Apple has decided to improve on.

The Verge iPhone 5 LiveBlog

Sparrow+Google = Gmail babies


Anybody that uses Google’s iOS Gmail client app would agree that it was a pretty pathetic attempt at optimized coding. And while there were a lot of people that were hoping that Google would do something to lessen the burden, a lot of us chose to use an alternate client when it comes to getting onto Gmail. My choice (And a lot of others) was Sparrow (Which was also a popular Gmail Mac OS client). Apart from having a nicely designed UI, the app ran smoothly. There was no lag while scrolling through mails and it allowed you to have multiple accounts in the same app. Other features like letting you scroll into the next or previous mail made the app a joy to use, the only major feature that was missing was notifications.

Then along came July 20th 2012, a mail from the Sparrow team stating that they had been acquired by Google. While this news might have caught people off guard, it was by means a surprise. Sparrow (A team of 5 Devs) had effectively managed to do what a global corporation like Google couldn’t, design an awesome app. While the current users who spent the $2.99 to buy the app (Myself included) might feel ripped off since the Sparrow team will no longer provide any additional features, I think it’s the sensible thing to do. And within 11 days, the iOS Gmail app got its next update which featured, lo and behold, smoother animations and scrolling. And while the UI still needs a bit of work, I’m quite sure that the Sparrow team are working quickly behind the scenes to rein Google’s butchers in.

Thank you Google for realising what a monumental flop your app had become and thank you for choosing the best team in the business to fix it.

Mozilla building iPad browser that won’t suck as much as Safari


So it looks like Mozilla have finally started building a much needed web browser for the iOS platform. While the iPhone is still neglected, there’s good news for iPad users. Mozilla is busy prototyping Junior, an iPad browser that will make Safari internet browsing eat it’s dust.

The browser will run full screen to take advantage of all the space available, there will however be no tabs on this browser. The other cool feature worth mentioning is that Junior will have the ability to create user accounts so you can keep other people using your iPad from discovering all those dodgy sites you like to visit while they’re not looking. Mozilla also believe that Google are working their asses off to get Chrome onto iOS which bodes well for those that have to suffer through Safari.


How to install iOS 6 beta without an iOS Developer account (Update: Apple has closed this loophole)

Apple have fixed this loophole so don’t bother trying. 😦

So some of you might be waiting for iOS 6 to be released right? Well Apple has released the beta to developers to start testing their apps on however there’s a way of loading the update on your phone without having a UDID. It’s the same process that was used for those people who ran the iOS 5 beta on their iPhones before iOS 5 launched. Please note that the same warnings apply with regards to loading the image as for the iOS 5 beta update, DOING THIS COULD BRICK YOUR PHONE (In laments terms, break it quite badly). Also please remember, this is the first dev beta so there is probably a lot that’s broken as well as some apps might not function properly or even at all.

For those of you that want to forgo these warning plow on like the little village people that you are. Please make sure that you have a backup of your phone handy and also make sure that you have the current live update 5.1.1 (ipsw file) somewhere handy in case the update fails and your phone can’t decide what it wants to do. Follow the below steps to find the glory hole:
Step 1: Download iOS 6 beta 1 for your iOS device from the links below.
Step 2: Open up iTunes on your computer and plug in your idevice.
Step 3: Click on your idevice on the left panel. Then hold down on the Option (or Shift for Windows users) button and click on “Check for Update” on the main panel.
Step 4: Select the IPSW of IOS 6 beta 1 that you downloaded and let it run (will take a few minutes).
Step 5: Congrats! Your idevice is now running iOS 6 beta! Enjoy!
Thanks to the guys at XDA for this gem, you can use the below source link for this info to get the latest iOS 6 beta 1 files (at the bottom of the post):


FNB’s Banking app now includes GEO Payments, making it even easier to transact

A couple of weeks ago my bank released an update for their already popular mobile app that allows payment by finding other people by using location based services. The app tries to find other users in your vicinity and allows you to transfer money to and from each other (Depending on whether you have an account with FNB) easily without knowing each others banking details. Below are the steps required (Using the iOS version):

1.) Open the FNB app on your device (Make sure that the app is allowed to use Location Based Services)


2.) Select the Geo Payments option. Then hit the settings button to choose your default account if you haven’t already:


3.) Choose either to Pay or Receive payment, the app will now try to find either the payee or recipient:


4.) Once a valid user has been found you can select them and continue with the rest of the transaction:


FNB has been pushing awesome innovations with regards to mobile banking and I have yet to see one of the other banks making any impact in this space in the near future.

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