Tech Cape Town

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Month: June 2015 (page 2 of 4)

Review: iOS9 Beta

I installed iOS9 Beta on my iPhone 6 a day or two after it was announced at WWDC. This is my phone I use daily so it really was a trial by fire.

It lived up to what Apple announced at WWDC. The new “San Francisco” font is easy to read, the improved spotlight search was excellent and the new app switcher was nice and fast. You can get a better idea on iOS9 features here and here.

So, how is it going? Well, I must confess something. I actually restored my phone back to iOS 8.3.

The fatal flaw in the beta version of iOS9 is the battery life. EVERYTHING else was fine. I use my phone a fair amount and my battery lasts me about a day and a half. On iOS9 I was getting half a day.

I am pretty sure these issues will be ironed out by the time there is a public release. A lot of the battery life issues can also be attributed to it being beta software. It has to log errors to send back to Apple and has not been fully optimised yet.

So unless you have a spare iPhone for testing, I’d give the beta a skip. And if you HAVE to give it a try, make sure that you back up your shit.

Too Lazy To Break Up With Someone? There’s an App for That…

Binder, clearly a rip of “Tinder” is an app that will call up or text your partner and give them the bad news. Where Tinder allows you to swipe people into your life, Binder allows you to swipe them out of your life.

The Internet has made it super easy to find the special someone.
Binder makes it just as easy to get rid of them too. With one swipe we take out all the pain of chucking your other half.

As simple as that. I tried downloading this app to give it a test (with Rachel’s permission of course) and see what kind of message they deliver but it was not yet available in at US app store. I do hope they deliver a polite, heartfelt message with a side of condescension and sarcasm.

I have very high hopes for this app as it has one of the best customer reviews I have ever seen.

Screen Shot 2015-06-22 at 1.02.50 PM

I’ll update this post with a review once I get the app tested. Oh, and best of all? It is free. Saving a dollar on an app may be good because I doubt you’ll be getting your stuff back after using this app.

[Binder via ProductHunt]

Scary PSA: Is Your iPhone Cheating on You?

We have all seen a few action movies where you see the one guy sneak up to the other guy’s car and stick a magnet GPS tracker underneath a wheel arch. Well that is actually just a waste of time. All he needed to do was grab the other guy’s iPhone for a few minutes.

Now this could be used if you think your significant other has been straying too. Most people generally keep their phones on them. So if you want a nicely mapped out view of where your significant other’s iPhone has been just grab it and open up Settings > Privacy > Location Services > System Services > Frequent Locations.

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Opinion: Why is Tech Support So Bad?

This isn’t a dig at any company in particular, they’re all bad!

Over the last few months, I’ve had to deal with Telkom, Vodacom, Apple, various ISPs and a few other companies. Every single one of these times I would have rather removed my nipples with sitting needles than go through what I did.

Telkom

They blame everything on their “computer system.” They can’t correct billing errors until the billing run has been done (almost a month later), they don’t have access to certain things. I have a dispute going back 4 months now and it keeps getting cancelled by Telkom without anyone ever contacting me. I lodge the dispute again and wait. So in total I’ve been billed R2000 too much over the past 4 months and I will be over-billed again at the end of this month and there is nothing they can do about it until after it is done.

Vodacom

I fought them about the contract price increases. It is so difficult to contact Vodacom as all your communications go into a big pile and get divided up. I battled to deal with the same person twice. Once or twice I had to have a public fit on Twitter before I got any help. I settled with them after 3 months of this back and forth. They wore me down.

Apple

I am having issues with iCloud. There is a 1.7GB backup I can’t delete. Neither can Apple. This is my first rodeo with Apple Support. We will have to see how it goes. At least I have the guy’s email address.

VOX Telecom

They have the worst support service in the history of the universe. I have spent hours on the phone with them BEGGING them to fix something. I have dealt with their support so much that even if I know the solution to a problem I know I won’t be able to convince them to fix it. If I was a billionaire, I would buy this company and shut it down.

So why is tech support so difficult? Back in the day, Afrihost was known for their excellent support. I dealt with them a few times and was very happy with their support every time. Then one day it just stopped. I cancelled everything I had with Afrihost because of how bad their support became. What happened? Why can’t any company get support right in this day and age?

Surely there has to be some formula for making customers happy. Surely it can’t be that hard? Or is it just such a low priority at so many companies? Do they actually provide bad support on purpose so that customers will just give up?

Have you dealt with a company that has good support? Leave the name in the comments below. If we all support companies with good support we might just force other companies to provide better support.

Breaking: iOS9 Will Allow Ad-blocking Extensions

A few days ago I explained WHY I believed in ad blocking and why I wouldn’t whitelist wired.com from my ad blocker, no matter how much they beg. You can read that here.

Apple has now opened up many more app based extensions including content blocking extensions for Safari. This means that you should be able to download an app that connects to Safari and kills all online adverts.

Apple does very little web advertising so that have a lot less to lose than someone like Google. Google’s main revenue stream is web based advertising.

The way this has been implemented means it won’t remove Apple’s adverts from within your games or from within the new News app’s content. Sneaky Apple, sneaky.

This looks like it is another nail in the web advertising coffin.

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