iPad Mini 2 And iPad 5 Launching In March

The rumors aren’t stopping. Today, we’re hearing reports that Apple is brewing next-generation models of its iPad mini and the iPad. The reports are based on the recent changes Apple has made on its product launch schedule. For example, iPad 3 owners were a little upset when Apple decided to launch the iPad 4 just months after its release. The same was true with the iPad mini. Topeka Capital Markets analyst Brian White believes that Apple will mostly likely update its iDevices every six months, bringing a total of 2 new devices to the table every year.

White says that his “checks” with industry sources at this week’s CES indicate signs of a fifth-generation iPad and a second-generation iPad mini in the works. White takes it further saying that the aforementioned devices will debut this March, nearly 6 months after the iPad mini and the iPad were announced. Describing the upcoming features of the two devices, White writes, “Our checks at CES indicate Apple will release the iPad 5 and the second-generation iPad mini this March. The iPad 5 is expected to be lighter and thinner than the iPad 4 that was released in October, while the form factor of the iPad mini should be similar to the first generation iPad mini that debuted in October.”

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Apple Working on a Less-Expensive iPhone

Sources say Apple is working on a lower-end iPhone, which could launch as soon as later this year. The cheaper phone could resemble the standard iPhone, with a different, less-expensive body, one of the sources says.

According to Wall Street Journal, the Apple possibly recycle specs from older iPhone models and using a different shell made of polycarbonate plastic; in contrast, iPhone 5 currently has an aluminum housing.

Any such device would certainly represent a major shift in Apple’s product strategy; Cupertino currently offers the iPhone 4 for free with a two-year contract, but doesn’t have any inexpensive unlocked phones — a major hole in its lineup for several global markets.

The cost for this low-cost iPhone expected to be between $99 and $149.

Ubuntu Phone Download, Source Available in February

Currently, in the mobile operating system(OS) space, we have iPhone iOS, Android, Windows Phone 8 and Blackberry OS. Now Ubuntu, popular open source desktop OS, available for mobile OS. This new phone operating system unveiled by its parent company, Canonical.

Canonical are ‘confident’ a major manufacturer will ship Ubuntu for Android this year; that will be the first step. But the first pure Ubuntu Phone devices will appear towards the end of the year.

Unlike Android, Ubuntu Phone OS has been designed from the ground up to deliver a ‘crisper, sharper’ experience on low-powered devices – a market segment Shuttleworth sees as being key to adoption.   These ‘starter smartphone’ users will, he says benefit from a leaner, ‘less complex’ user experience than rivals. Something he says emerging markets are calling out for.

Although Canonical’s ‘primary market’ will be selling Ubuntu Phones via retail, and making a cut from such sales, you will be able to download and install the phone OS on certain device handsets.

Alan Pope has reportedly confirmed Ubuntu for Phone available late February. For all its glitz and glamour, the Ubuntu Phone image due in February is unlikely to be feature complete – and it’s important that anyone contemplating installing it is aware of this beforehand.  Please take a look this video. Looks promising.

Google Maps for iOS hits 10 million downloads in 48 hours

Google Maps was released last Friday and Jeff Huber, a Google senior vice president revealed on Google+, the company’s social network, that the app was then downloaded more than 10 million times in less than 48 hours!

“We’re excited for the positive reception of Google Maps for iPhone around the world,” Huber said. “Congratulations to the Maps Team on the recognition for the passion and hard work they poured into it, for this release and over the last 7+ years.”

Apple users had been looking forward to the return of the Google Maps app ever since it was removed from iOS6 and replaced with Apple Maps. Google’s Maps app quickly jumped to the top free app on the App Store after its release. The software was a bit of a surprise, with reports of its arrival coming just hours before it went live.

More than half Apple users seem happy to have Google Maps back.

Google+ Reveals Deeper YouTube Integration

Search giant Google has rolled out new integration practices between its Google+ social network and social video sharing website YouTube.

YouTube users now have the option to share videos they upload on Google+ by selecting that option directly from the upload interface. Once uploaded the videos are automatically showcased in a “videos” tab on the users Google+ profile.

In order to use the new service users must like their Google+ and YouTube accounts under their real name. The new process is very similar to what is already used for Picassa photos sharing.

For Google+ users who do not want to use the service the tab can be hidden.

After opting in to the service the users videos then read “YouTube” and when clicked users will be sent to YouTube rather than watching the embed on Google+, a sly way for YouTube and Google to share multiple pageviews per video engagement.

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