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October 25, 2014 / 1 Heshvan, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘smartphone’

Israeli ‘Start Up’ Couple’s Gadget Holds Smartphones in the Car

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

A young Israeli couple has come up with a ridiculously simply gadget to attach smartphones anywhere in the car or elsewhere, without their sliding all over the place or having to be restricted to a permanent holder.

The “Sticko” consists of nothing but one pair of suction cups, one on each side of a flexible but durable material. Another variety of Sticko features two pairs of suctions cups to hold up larger items, such as tablets.

“The phone mount she got me was bulky and difficult to set up, plus, once I got out of my car and went to where I had to go, I was left with no mount for my phone,” he said.

Gal Tzuker said she and her husband Boaz began to think of finding a way to safely hold a smartphone anywhere in the vehicle after she bought a smartphone mount for his car.

They spent seven months developing and testing prototypes of an item that could be attached to any smooth surface, even if not flat, and hold the smartphone safely.

They came up with the “Sticko” product, which caught the interest of friends who also wanted one. The couple turned to the Kickstarter firm, which raised money from investors for mass production of the gadget.

They started out with $15,000, and Kickstarter added another $28,000. The couple plans to start making, marketing and shipping the item in the United States.

Savvy Israelis Ahead of US in Smartphone Internet Use

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

Israel is ahead of the United States and Europe in the use of Internet on smartphones, and Israel is almost at the top of pack in the percentage of people owning smartphones, according to Google and other market surveys.

Israel is the country that gave the world chat instant messaging, disk on-key, Waze and MobileEye, among hundreds of other high-tech gadgets and computer programs.

The smartphone came to Israel in 2009, two years after it was launched in the United States and Europe, but Israelis have made up for lost time.

Approximately 93 percent of Israelis use Internet through smartphone, compared with 83 percent in the United States, and 77 percent watch YouTube, according to Google and Ipsos MediaCT surveys, which examine habits of smartphone use worldwide.

More than 57 percent of Israelis have a smartphone, up from 35 percent last year. At even half that rate of growth, Israelis will be the most smartphone-saturated country in the world next year. The penetration in France is only 42 percent and in Germany is 40 percent.

Approximately 60 percent of Americans are estimated to have smartphones, and 62 percent of Britons have the high-tech gadget.

Israelis have the popular habit of answering phones in the middle of a chupah or Brit Mila. The new marketing surveys show that half of Israelis feel comfortable in using their smartphones at social occasions. When using the smartphones in coffee shops, more than half of the respondents said they use one hand for holding the coffee cup and the other for the smartphone.

When Israelis start trying to speak with the coffee cups and drinking the smartphones, then we knew have a big problem.

Samsung S4 Smartphone Makes ‘Aliyah’ and Costs $1,100

Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

Samsung’s Galaxy S4 flagship Smartphone arrived in Israel this week with an official price tag of approximately $1,100 (3,600-3,700 shekels).

Prices may drop a bit if local mobile carriers try to undercutting each other, and one retailer already is offering it for $920.

The Samsung S4 has a five-inch screen with a super-thin glass and thin battery. It also features a dual video function for video conferences.

IDF to Protect Smartphones from Hi-Tech Spies

Monday, April 15th, 2013

The IDF soon will install protective systems onboard its smartphones used by the IDF to protect them against digital Trojan horses and prevent various spyware software using the devices eavesdropping, Israel Defense reported.

The military’s Information Security department has determined there has been a significant rise in risks to the sensitive data found on cell phones of IDF officers who have yet to receive considerable protection.

Viruses take over the cell phones, via SMS messages, and allow hostile entities to know its location, view the contents of the device and even remotely operate its camera.

App Helps Israelis Seek Bomb Shelters

Tuesday, March 5th, 2013

Smartphone apps provide a wide range of services, including information and entertainment, but in Israel, the apps have another unique life-saving use – finding a bomb shelter.

Following the recent security-related tension in northern Israel as civil war rages in Syria, i-Apps, an Israeli Smartphone application development company, has updated its “Merkhav Mugan” [residential secure space] app to include all secure shelters throughout all of Israel.

The GPS-based app helps people fleeing from rocket fire to locate the closest bomb shelter or secure area, providing the fastest route to it. Updates from the emergency authorities are also provided in real time. The app enables anyone to add information about available shelters which are not yet listed on the app.

The app was first launched six months ago and provided service to the residents of southern Israel who were under the threat of rocket fire from Gaza. i-Apps received information from the municipalities on the location of shelters in the north and have updated the info on the existing app.

The idea was presented to i-Apps by two residents of Ashdod, who have learned the necessity of this life saving app first hand.

Smartphone app Has Text of Megillah and Drowns Out Haman’s Name

Sunday, February 24th, 2013

Unique Purim apps available to smartphone users help make the holiday marking the salvation of the Jewish people in ancient Persia an even more unique experience both in Israel and across the world.

For the complete reading of Megillat Esther, there is an app available for Android users, which includes the Hebrew text of Esther, complete with vowels and cantillation marks, seven different font sizes, as well as a verse-by-verse English translation. One of its unique features is that it provides a noisemaker (grogger) to drown out the name of the evildoer Haman during the reading, with several options for noisy sound effects.

The English translation is based on the 1917 Jewish Publication Society version, whose text has been updated to replace “thee” and “thou,” “hast” and “didst,” and similar archaisms.

In addition, the app also includes the text for the Purim Service (seder Purim) with the appropriate texts for four different customs: Ashkenazim, Sephardim, Nusach Sefard and Nusach Ari.

The app is available on Google Play Store by the name of Esther by ZigZag Inc. and costs $1.99 or NIS 7.46.

Other Purim apps, which are both fun and free, include the Megillas Esther app, which was made available to Android users this year after having been available to iPhone and iPod Touch users last year.  According to the Google Play Store description, the app allows you to scroll through verse by verse with a flick of a finger and the ‘virtual’ noisemaker allows you to choose the noises, including crowd booing, air horn, firecrackers, and machine gun for the reading of Haman’s name. There is also a helpful Haman highlighter.

And finally, in order to enjoy a safe and happy Purim, there is SoberApp, developed in Israel, which helps a person monitor the intake of drinks and estimates the blood and alcohol level. By entering basic information about weight and gender and the type of drink a person has had as well as the time he had it, the app will inform if one can drive now or later or if the drinker has exceeded the alcohol limit in whatever country he is located.

The free app is available on Google Play Store and is especially suitable to those celebrating Purim with plenty of traditional drinking. Happy Purim!

The Next War With Apps and GPS

Monday, February 4th, 2013

In the days before Elie was called to Operation Pillar of Defense, he showed me an iPhone application he had found on the Internet. It was called “Color Red” – the same name used to indicate an incoming missile. And what it did – was alert you that a missile had been fired from Gaza and tell you how many seconds you had before impact. It even had a stop watch which you could start and then time yourself as you ran. Sick humor…

Elie called a short while ago – he found another application – it’s called, “The Next War” and what it does is tell you where the nearest bomb shelter is – based on your location as identified by GPS. Wonderful. He thought it was hysterical. He was particularly amused that according to this application, the nearest bomb shelter to where he was – working as a security guard in the mall in Maale Adumim – is a 40 minute drive to the southern part of Jerusalem (ignoring the bomb shelter that is in the mall in Maale Adumim and every other bomb shelter between us and Jerusalem). There was a link to report additional bomb shelters.

What does it say about us that we create programs to measure how fast we can run and where we can seek shelter? I actually think it shows how well we are adapting. No, I really doubt that either of these applications would be used in a real war. Who has time to pull out your phone, open the application and then consult it as you run for the 15 seconds to one minute it takes for the missile to arrive?

So maybe the better question is what is says about our enemies.

Visit A Soldier’s Mother.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/a-soldiers-mother/the-next-war-with-apps-and-gps/2013/02/04/

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