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Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

Make Summer Memories Count With Magisto Movie Maker App

July 25th, 2014 by Christen Rochon

NEWS FLASH: The summer is quickly flying by and so are those amazing summer memories that you’ve captured on your smartphone. Why not do something cool with all your amazing photos and videos (I mean besides uploading them to Instagram) and create awesome videos with the press of a button?

Say hello to Magisto!

This summer, I’ve been using my new favorite video app Magisto, to do just that.  Like magic, Magisto turns your smartphone photos and videos into an amazing montage of memories with music, video transitions and more.

magisto

 

Magisto makes things simple with two large buttons that let you either start shooting a new video or jump straight to your Gallery to sift through existing videos.  If you choose to shoot a new video, Magisto jumps to its in-app recorder, which allows you to switch between front-facing and rear-facing cameras. Each time you start and stop recording, your new clip will be saved for use. You can see what clips you’ve recorded, and easily delete any that you don’t want to include in your final compilation video. Once you’re done recording, you can hit Next to begin selecting any other media you might want to include in your final edit.  The video picker interface lets you look through files in your media library. All you have to do is pick the items you want to include in your final edit and let Magisto find the interesting parts to edit together.  Magisto gives you 12 different themes to choose from. There are specialized themes for holidays, as well as more general themes like Street Beats and Sentimental. Each theme comes with a few different soundtrack options, or you can upload your own music for random use throughout your movie.  Finally, when you’re done with all your files and settings, you can upload your video to Magisto’s servers for editing.  Check out one of my first Magisto edited videos HERE or discover the latest video I created and uploaded to Instagram below…

 

 

If you sign up for a free Magisto account, you can only upload up to 16 video files, and 5 photos for your final movie, (which is limited to 60 seconds). There’s a drawback though. As a free user, you can’t download your edited movie to your phone. You can only share your masterpiece movie via a link to your video via YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and e-mail. (You can tag people in your videos if you connect your Facebook account) But in order to share to Instagram, you’ll have to upgrade to a premium account which is $4.99/ month you can pay $0.99 per movie download.

So if you’re like me and keep tons of photos and videos on your smartphone and no time to sift through and edit them all, you need to check out Magisto to keep your memories forever!  Download Magisto today for your Apple or Android device via iTunes, Google Play and Amazon stores.

Do you use photo or video editing apps on your phone? Which smart apps do you use for editing and keeping memories fresh for the summer? Share your thoughts below.

Take Smartphone Photos To Another Level With Olloclip

July 23rd, 2014 by Christen Rochon

olloclip

 

If you’re familiar with taking photos on your smartphone, you already know how limiting the standard lens can be.  There have been many accessories promising improved smartphone photographs through filters and external lenses but none of them have been more popular to date, than the Olloclip 4-in-1 lens system.  The olloclip 4-in-1 lens system is one of the most popular smartphone lens solutions, and it comes with a wide angle lens, fisheye lens and two macro lenses to complete versatility in any photography setting.

 

olloclip

 

 

This set includes a wide angle and fisheye lens, which can be easily converted into 10X and 15X macro lenses by unscrewing the outermost part of each.  The compact design means that instead of four lenses you’re carrying around just one small accessory, which will easily fit in your pocket or elsewhere. Olloclip slides onto the iPhone and comes off easily and the lenses are attached securely, but you can’t use olloclip if your iPhone has a case. There are convenient lens caps for each of the lenses, and you also get a soft bag that you can use for storage or cleaning.

 

Wide Angle lens

It’s not always possible to fit in everything in one photo, which is what the wide angle lens is for.  The wide angle lens isn’t the best in optical quality, but for iphoneography it definitely does the trick and give you the width of the canvas that you’re looking for.

 

 

olloclip

a wide angle view of familiar sights in downtown Portland, Oregon.

 

 

 

olloclip

A wide angle view of my hotel hallway.

Fisheye lens

The fisheye lens works exactly as you would expect and delivers the photos that you’ve come to know and love.  However, you have to be careful when shooting your photos with the fisheye lens as I have found that my fingertips somehow get caught in the shot, unless I’m extremely careful before pressing the shutter.

 

olloclip

a fisheye lens view of downtown Portland, Oregon.

 

olloclip

A fisheye tale of a recent auto industry event in Portland, Oregon.

10x lens / 15x macro lens

The macro lenses are very useful for macro photography. You can’t do macro photography without a macro lens, so olloclip 4-in-1 can open an entirely new world of creativity for you.  I used the 10x lens and the 15x macro lens on tea bag packaging and the contents.  You can see that both the 10x and 15x lens delivers in quality and makes the macro photography experiences worthwhile for use on text and shooting other objects, while on the go.

 

olloclip

An external view of the Smith Teamaker Herbal Infusion tea bag packaging and directions.

 

 

olloclip

An up close and personal view of the Smith Teamaker Herbal Infusion tea bag.

 

 

Olloclip 4-in-1 is available for iPhone 4/4s and iPhone 5/5s for $69.  Do you love taking photos on your iPhone?  Would you consider yourself an  iphoneographer?  What are some of your favorite iPhone camera accessories that you use?  Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

 

 

 

Downloads: Top 5 Games To Kill Time At Work

July 22nd, 2014 by Christen Rochon

Let’s face it!  Everyone loves playing games on their smartphone or tablet to pass the wading time throughout the day.  Whether you admit it or not, you’ve definitely got a few bandwagon games on your smartphone that you probably don’t even play anymore.  Why not jump on the newest and most downloaded games of the week to peak your interest in gaming agin.  Discover the top 5 free games to kill time at work available this week for your Apple or Android device below.

 

Guess The Emoji game

 

5.  Guess The Emoji

With the buzz of new Emojis coming soon, isn’t time you brushed up on your emoji knowledge before things really get out of hand?  Guess The Emoji will actually entertain you for hours.  The kid friendly and family friendly game tests your logic to solve simple emoji puzzles.

FREE:  Available on iTunes and Google Play store

 

 

 

dont touch the spikes4.  Don’t Touch The Spikes

Talk about a game that’s pretty straight forward.  Basically you maneuver and fly a bird with the intention to make it to safety without flying into spike walls and traps.  Could this be the next Angry Bird? I’m not so sure, but it is generating a buzz in gaming so you’ll just have to play and see.

FREE:  Available on iTunes and Google Play store

timberman

3.  Timberman

Feeling a little nostalgic and in search for an old school arcade style game to soothe the in-office tension?  Then Timberman is for you!  Its a fairly simply game.  Become a Tiberman, chop wood and avoid the branches.  As you get further along in the game you’ll have to compete with variable environments and 10 Timbermen to unlock, it’s not as easy as it sounds, but you’ll have fun competing for top leaderboard status anyhow.

FREE:  Available on iTunes and Google Play store

jenga games to kill time at work2.  Jenga

The official Jenga game can now be played in the palm of your hands from anywhere!  (Can you imagine trying to set up dozens of wooden blocks on the subway?  Not happening!)  With Jenga on your smartphone, you can take the tower building experience anywhere!  Just don’t yell out JENGA too loud, you’re killing time in the office, not at family game night.

FREE:  Available on iTunes and Google Play store

kardashian games to kill time at work

1.  Kim Kardashian:  Hollywood

If you love all things Kardashian, then this game is totally for you!  You can you create your own star-like celebrity status on a red carpet adventure starring Kim Kardashian.  You can even date and dump celebrities at the best parties and hottest clubs.  Don’t worry, you won’t have to marry Kanye West in the game.  Sounds like fun right?

FREE:  Available on iTunes and Google Play store

Have you downloaded any of these games yet?  Would you actually play the Kardashian game?  Would you download any of these games to kill time at work?  Share your thoughts below.

Create Great iPhone Photos And Videos With KLYP+

July 21st, 2014 by Tech Staff

Looking for a DSLR alternative to create great iPhone photos and videos on the go?   A brand-new smartphone case from Manfrotto called KLYP+ promises to do much more than be a protect your precious smartphone, it has accessories that essentially transforms your iPhone 5/5s into a  portable photo studio.  

 

Create Great iPhone Photos KLYP+

Create great iPhone photos with KLYP+ iphone photography accessories including lighting, lenses and more!

 

 

Like any good gadget, the KLYP+ comes equipped with enough transforming tricks to make other iPhone accessories squirm in inadequatcy. With just a few easy clicks, you can attach a super bright LED light ($65) to your bumper that lets you shoot images + record video in just about any light condition.

 

 

Create Great iPhone Photos KLYP+

 

The continuous illumination makes the images you capture incredibly vivid with no light reflectors required. KLYP+ is also compatible with a trio of external lenses ($60) that screw right on so you can alter your POV from portrait mode to landscape to fisheye effect on the fly.

 

Create Great iPhone Photos KLYP+

 

Even a kickstand and tripod mount connect to your bumper so that you can prop up your phone when you want more than a selfie.   Now that’s what i call a really iPhonographer’s accessory!

Do you have any iPhone photography gadgets that you love? Would you use the KLYP+ for your photography and videography needs? Tell us in the comments below. 

Meet The Martian Notifier – A Stylish Watch That’s Smart! [Review]

July 18th, 2014 by Christen Rochon

I’ve always been obsessed with functional and fashionable gadgets, since childhood.  My first stylish gadget was a pink smart watch with a flashlight & calculator that all my friends wanted to covet for themselves.  Fast forward years later in a world where smart watches are being released every other day, it’s easy to get caught up in the hype of the latest and greatest in gadgets.  But how do you know which smart watch is right for you?

 

Notifier

 

A few months ago, I was introduced to Martian Watches and their latest award-winning innovation the Notifier watch that was released in stores last month.  Now that I have one on my wrist,  it’s like my Girl Scouts moments all over again but this time it’s never coming off.

 

Check out why I’m in love with the new Martian Notifier smart watch below.

 

Notifier

 

Simple style:  The Martian Notifier is a classic analog watch with a simplistic feel that’s far from simple. The interchangeable bands keep up with my ever-changing style or I can keep it simple and monochromatic with my all-black timepiece that’ll go with everything!

 

The Martian Notifier is an attractive, colorful analog wristwatch with an integrated OLED readout that acts as a hands-free gateway to the world, keeping you well informed while your phone remains in a pocket, purse or backpack. This unique smartwatch gives you the ability to receive real-time alerts and notifications on your wrist. Used in conjunction with the free Martian Notifier App, you will automatically receive notifications — including Caller ID, texts, Facebook, Twitter, Weather, Email, Calendar, Instagram, Pinterest, favorite games, bank alerts, fitness stats, and any other alert your device allows. You can also initiate voice commands on your smartphone’s speakerphone for uses such as “read text” while you’re on the move.

 

 

MUST READ:  Never Sacrifice Style Or Function With Martian Notifier Smart Watch

 

Function:  A touch of a Notifier button activates your smartphone’s speakerphone, enabling hundreds of voice commands to control music, check a sports score, get directions, search the web, create a reminder or appointment, and more. You can also decline an incoming call, set silent vibrating alarms that only you will sense, get a once-an-hour tickler to remind you to take a break, turn on an LED light to see in a dark room, control your phone’s camera shutter, and more.

 

Notifier

 

 

You can now find Martian Notifier at Best BuyTargetBloomingdales, and Meijer!  For more information on the Martian Notifier smart watch visit MartianNotifier.com and connect on FacebookTwitter andPinterest today.

Worst Internet Companies Like Facebook, Comcast & Time Warmer Ranked By You!

July 16th, 2014 by Christen Rochon

Have you heard about the evil Comcast representative that refused to cancel service?  Ryan Block, co-founder of technology news site Engaget, ended up with a nightmarish customer service representative when he called to cancel his service earlier this week. The rep’s strategy for getting customers to stay with Comcast? Just don’t let them off the phone.

This story went viral and has led Ranker to get the dirt on the worst internet companies online today.  Ranker.com a platform that produces thousands of crowdsourced answers to opinion-based questions, has collected nearly 14,000 votes on what people think are the Companies With the Worst Customer Service.

Nearly 5,000 votes were also collected on what people think areThe Most Evil Internet Companies.

Here are the current rankings for both lists:

Companies With the Worst Customer Service

1. Time Warner Cable

2. AT&T

3. Bank of America

4. Walmart

5. American Airlines

6. Comcast

7. Citibank

8. Best Buy

9. Gold’s Gym

10. Ticketmaster

The Most Evil Internet Companies:

1. Facebook

2. Comcast

3. Apple

4. Time Warner Cable

5. Go Daddy

6. AOL

7. Electronic Arts

8. Microsoft Corporation

9. Google

10. Twitter

 

Are you a customer of any of these companies?  Do you agree?  Share your horrible customer service horror stories below.

Bringing Style To Your Fitness Band – Meet ToryBurch For FitBit

July 15th, 2014 by Christen Rochon

As previewed earlier this year at CES in Las Vegas, the Tory Burch for FitBit collaboration is one step closer to bring fashionable fitness integration to women everywhere.  The exclusive collaboration between? Tory Burch and Fitbit transforms your tracker into a super-chic accessory for work or weekend, day or evening, with a designer Metal Hinged Bracelet. Made of solid brass, it’s based on the decorative, open fretwork that’s a signature of the Tory Burch design — complete with a secure, easy-access latch on the back. 

 

 

Tory Birch for FitBit

The Tory Birch for FitBit Metal Hinged Bracelet.

 

 

The Tory Burch for FitBit collection adds a little style and flair to the normally bland fitness band.  In case wearing the bracelet on your wrist isn’t your thing, Tory Burch has options for you!  You can also transform your tracker into a? super-chic accessory for work or weekend, day or evening, with the Fret Pendant Necklace. Made of solid brass, it’s based on the decorative, open fretwork that’s a signature of our design — complete with a secure, easy-access latch on the back. Suspended from a thin link chain, it looks polished while keeping the device comfortably close.

 

Tory Birch for FitBit

Tory Birch for FitBit Fret Pendant Necklace.

 

Want to get in on Tory Burch For FitBit collection?  The Fitbit Flex® with tracker is sold separately, so be prepared to shell out $195 for this designer bracelet accessory or $175 for the pendant with preorders today.  No word yet if the accessory will be available in retail stores.   If gold isn’t your thing, there are pink and blue silicone printed designer options as well available on ToryBurch.com.

 

 

Do you own a fitness tracker by FitBit?  Would you add the Tory Burch for FitBit accessories to you daily style statement?  Share your thoughts on the price, design and idea of the Tory Burch for FitBit collection below.

Selfie 101: How to Take Good Selfies #VZWBuzz

July 14th, 2014 by Christen Rochon

You know there’s a natural art to taking good selfies right?  Natural lighting. A good pose. The right setting. Several factors go into snapping the perfect selfie. Don’t you hate it when you have the perfect selfie moment, but not the perfect selfie photo?  

 

How often have you had to ditch a selfie because it looked abysmal?  Bad selfies should be a thing of the past – it’s almost 2015 for goodness sake!

 

If you find yourself a little blurry on snapping the perfect selfie smize or pose, then this post is for you.  Use this guide to learn how to take good selfies and other fun facts about Oxford Dictionaries’ 2013 word of the year.

 

How to Take Good Selfies 

 

how to take good selfies

 

Illustration / Deboice Robertson via Verizon Wireless

5 More Things You Didn’t Know Your iPhone Could Do

July 14th, 2014 by Christen Rochon

things your iPhone can do

 

I’ve shared plenty of tricks and tips for iPhone users, but did you know there are hundreds of things your iPhone can do that you probably won’t ever use?  On the flip side, there are so many things you iPhone can do that you never even thought to take advantage of.  Check out my favorite features of things your iPhone can do below.

 

 

 

things your iPhone can do

5.  Create a passcode with letters (not just numbers)

By default, your iPhone asks you to type in numbers when you create the passcode that unlocks your phone. But you can change this setting. Go to Settings > General > Passcode Lock and turn off “Simple Passcode.” You will be prompted to change your passcode, and a full keyboard will appear onscreen instead of just the number pad. This keyboard will pop up every time you unlock your phone.

 

 

 

things your iPhone can do

 

4. Customize vibrations

This will let you change the vibration pattern for alerts and notifications. Go to Settings > Sounds > Ringtone > Vibration > Create New Vibration. You can also customize the vibration pattern for individual contacts by following the same procedure from your contact list. This way, you can tell who’s calling or messaging you just by feel.

 

 

things your iPhone can do

3. Reveal timestamps on text messages

Drag the text bubble to the left and you’ll see a timestamp for every text message. Among other things, this will show you just how much time you waste texting.

 

things your iPhone can do

2. Automatically turn off your music with the timer

If you like to doze off with music playing like I do, you can use the timer to automatically turn your music off so that it doesn’t play all night. In the timer app, select “When Timer Ends,” then scroll down and select “Stop Playing.” The Timer will automatically turn off your tunes after whatever length of time you set.

 

20140712-105625-39385712.jpg

 

1. Recharge your battery faster by switching to airplane mode

Switching to airplane mode turns off battery-draining wireless and cellular access, allowing your phone to recharge up to twice as fast.

 

BONUS: Get Siri to read your emails aloud for you

Just say the magic words “Read my email” and Siri will read all your messages aloud to you. If you like, you can tell her to read only your most recent email (“Read my latest email”) or just those from a specific contact (“Do I have email from Aldo?”).

 

20140712-105625-39385827.jpg

 

 

 

5 Ways To Own Summer Concert Moments With The Verizon Wireless Lumia Icon

July 11th, 2014 by Christen Rochon

This summer is all about music festivals, exclusive concert tours and enjoying the great outdoors. Unfortunately, unless you’re a millionaire you can’t take everyone on your summer exploits, but you can over-share your experiences on social media like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Vine. Don’t you hate it when you capture the perfect shot, but it ends up being too dark, blurry or downright unreconizable? What about when you’re having the best time imaginable and you want to share the moment on Facebook or Instagram, but you can’t because your service coverage area sucks?

 

Essence Fest smartphones

The ESSENCE Festival concerts at the SuperDome illuminates with smartphones.

 

I’ve experience my fair share of summer wins and summer share fails. Typically, I’ve fumbled with various devices to capture perfect moments Until I discovered how the Lumia Icon on Verizon helped me own the summer and share perfect moments flawlessly. Recently, I took the Nokia Lumia Icon for a spin in New Orleans for ESSENCE Music Festival and I love what this device can do!  Discover 5 ways the Lumia Icon from Verizon Wireless can help you own the summer and never miss the next perfect photo or social media moment again.

 

 

1. Camera:  During ESSENCE Festival in New Orleans, your celebrity moment can happen practically anytime and anywhere!  Uploading and sharing quality selfies is a breeze and looks great since the Lumia Icon sports a 20-megapixel rear camera, with a 1/2.5-inch sensor and f/2.4 lens. Photos produced by the Icon camera are nice, in low-light and in everyday situations, and the inclusion of optical image stabilization definitely makes a difference.

 

20140711-104839-38919023.jpg

Celebrity photos with Lamman Rucker, Sevyn Streeter, Lance Gross and Janelle Monae? Don’t mind if I do!

 

2. Audio:  The device, according to Nokia, comes equipped with four digital high-dynamic-range microphones, which allows the Icon to capture six times the sound pressure level of a “conventional smartphone microphone” without any discernible distortion.  Capturing concert audio / video is amazing thanks to the Lumia Icon.  Check out the artist known as the Purple One (aka Prince) performing live at ESSENCE Fest below.

 

 

3. Video:  Looking to capture great videos on the go?  On the video side, the Icon captures at 1080p, and allows users to choose between 24, 25 and 30 fps—basically, you can get great videos without the grainy, side effects! (This video was compressed to illustrate the sound quality not the video quality…just saying. LOL)

 

4. Available apps:  Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and more!  All your favorite apps are available in the Windows store, so you never have to worry about possibly missing a shareable moment again.

 

Verizon Essence Fest

Verizon hosted a super store within its ESSENCE Festival booth filling all patrons last minute needs.

 

 

5. Verizon’s powerful Network:  For a wireless company, results come down to coverage, speed and reliability. That’s why Verizon has built America’s largest and most reliable 4G LTE network.  The Verizon XLTE is the latest advancement of America’s largest and most reliable 4G LTE network: double the 4G LTE bandwidth in citiescoast to coast.  That means faster peak speeds and greater capacity than before, letting you stream, share and do more.  Verizon XLTE is here—making the most of the best devices on the best network.

 

 

The Nokia Lumia Icon can be found at your neighborhood Verizon Wireless store for $49.99 with 2-year contract or VerizonWireless.com.  Now that you’ve seen how I’ve used the Lumia Icon to own and share my summer experiences, would you consider using the Lumia Icon or other Nokia Lumia devices soon?

 

 

 

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