Fixing that Stale Tech Feeling

Over the past couple of months I have not been posting much or doing much in general on the tech side of things. I guess this has been due to a number of factors including being busy at work, lack of motivation and being very tired. However, I guess another reason could be that things got somewhat stale and I was getting to lazy in that I wasn’t changing anything. Well, some vacation time as seen a resurgence in my interest and a bit of time to do some thinking. Plus, the announcement of the new pebble-time. I am really looking forward to the new pebble and actually backed it. This is the first time I have actually backed something on kickstarter and now know it will not be the last either.

So what I have I changed?

My first point of call is my pebble, I had been having alot of problems with battery drain after an update, I tried everything before resorting to removing all of the apps and stopping some of the apps on the phone. The battery life was back to what it was. I reinstalled my main apps but setting them up better than before. I checked the user guide for more info and found one or two additions within these with more information these included the default functions of the watch. This meant that Awear was more or less redundant, so I left it off. As it turned out, it is likely that this was the culprit for the battery drain! It kept going wrong, crashing, etc . So I completely removed it. I have a feeling that it hadn’t been updated for quite sometime as well. The only thing that I missed was the SMS function. While the default function on the watch app offers pretty much basic functions it doesn’t offer what I was truly after. My own custom replies which I found useful in Awear and one of the main reasons I tried hanging on to it. Some searching and I found pebble communicator. This app requires a phone app as well but it offers exactly what I was looking for, including being able to reply from the app! The only thing missing now is the ability to delete emails from the watch.

Next I have moved on to my S5, I had thinking for sometime that I had this thing and not using it to its fullest. I was also getting hacked of with Aviate, despite being one of the best launchers/home screens the Yahoo rot was leaking into it. Various things were becoming to integrated with yahoo and seeing as though Yahoo is in bed with Microsoft I was getting closer and closer to ditching it. The final straw was finding constant alerts for cricket and other sporting events which I hadn’t asked for and no way to turn them off, the problem was yahoo! So I did some more searching and messing about and ended up with Buzz, while a fresh experience, I am really getting to enjoy my phone again and its much more customizable with no forced crap from yahoo, etc. The battery seems to last a little more on some occasions depending on usage. Other changes are being tested which seem okay but I want to make sure I am happy with them!

The tablet has also under gone changes, I had been getting reports that the UI was not responding and the device was being slow (an under statement) and not being what it was. So I have installed a new launcher which seems to be faster but is also under going trials (as in, does it work as I expect). A few of the apps have also been removed because I realised there is no point in having ones I don’t use. I am thinking of ways to get more out of this device as well.

The roku 3 is also working nicely and I will write up a separate post for that!

Expect more in the coming few weeks as I go through stuff.


Sumsung S5 (UK) Got a Lollipop

After the update of android lollipop about a month ago to my nexus 7 (2012) I was some what pleased with the results although the machine itself is still slow in loading stuff like google plus and one or two other internet related stuff but otherwise it really isn’t that bad. I have found that after some time, the phone and tablet are speeding up but at times the battery doesn’t last as long as it did but there are improvements. About a week ago I received notice that the update for my S5 was available. As with the other update it arrived quite late in the evening but I did the update then as I was due to go away for a couple of days. All went well with very little changes in my set up. When the thing came up to ask if I wanted notifications on the lock screen I ticked no. I really don’t see any point in them as I mostly deal with stuff via my pebble. I checked and found that the google apps and one or two others were still disabled which they were. I haven’t had much chance recently to see what else I can do with this phone as I have been somewhat busy with other things but this weekend should see that opportunity present itself. So far the main problem that has reared its head is that finger unlocking as got a little stuck which can be fixed by pressing the on button off and on so to give present the lock screen again. The enables the finger print scanner again and this time it works as it should.

Since I started this post my phone as since received an update and still seems OK for about a week with the finger scanner still have issues after a few days. I have also made some changes which I will deal with soon.