Wednesday, July 6, 2011

About mobile phones screen/display

Have you had an issue with a phone who fell down and whose screen got completely broken ? Or maybe a friend of yours has ? Or maybe it wasn't a phone, maybe it was a tablet...

Somehow, it happened to me quite recently (HP desire HD) and I am surprised about a couple of things:
- how fragile the screens are
- how bad the insurances are
- how bad this is covered in blogs, news, and so on

- How fragile the screens are:

My phone fell down from my sofa. I was sitting. So the fell was really not from a high altitude. I did not smash it to the ground and I really did not expect it to break. I made some previous phones fall from higher or while running and so on. Never had been an issue. The novelty ? Touch screen !!! It seems to be the excuse to have fragile screens. Or is this a hidden marketing to force people to buy new phones ?

- How bad the insurances are:

So soon the screen is broken, will the insurances refuse to pay anything. That is clever from them but I find it a bit too good for them. I am wondering if a customer-protection company will someday do something about it...

- How bad this is covered in blogs, news and so on

Finally something interesting for me. Because that means I can write something that may help you in the choice of your next mobile phone. When I lost my HTC desire HD, I needed a new phone. But I did not want to do the same mistake and buy a phone with an easy-to-break screen. So I looked. Mobile-phone comparison websites, technical specifications, ... nothing. Not a damn thing about how hard or soft the screen is.

Let's see for example this page:

It speaks about the screen of the phone: size, amoled, ... but nothing about resistance of the screen.

So you will probably think: "oh, every phones must be the same, then". And this is where my blog is helpful, no, every phones are not the same. The strange thing is that this has been forgotten in the specifications. Nobody speaks about it but it is there.

There are 2 types of resistant glass on the market that can be used for mobile phones: the gorilla glass and dragontrail. Please feel free to google them, a lot of information is available on these glass (you just had to know the names). Here for example, some quite convincing video/article:

So, where to find them ? The dragontrail is not yet in the market as far as I know and will more target tablets. As it goes for gorilla glass, nokia N8 and samsung galaxy SII are two examples of mobile phones using it. The full list is available here:

The only remaining question is when will we have this kind of info included in the technical description of smartphones/tablets/PC... :) ?

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Android problem when changing timezone

This is a quite awkward bug from Android. Actually, I could not believe there was such an obvious issue to change time zone...

When you change the timezone of your phone, the time displayed when you start your mobile and the time on the upper right corner of your home should display the new time correctly (I even had problems with that but a restart of the phone fixed it and it may have been fixed in 2.3 as I did not manage to reproduce the issue).

HOWEVER the main clock on your home page will still show the previous time no matter what ! You can try whatever settings you want, it will not change !

The solution ? Very ugly for people travelling a lot but well, not my fault... you need to remove the clock widget and add it again. Click on the clock for a long time (2-3 seconds) and move it to the bin (should be on the lower part of the screen). Then go to "Personalize" (there sould be a link per default), then "Widget", then "Clock". Choose the Clock you want (the default one takes a lot of space on the screen in my opinion) and the "new" Clock should display the time in your timezone... Problem "solved".

Saturday, June 18, 2011

"Turn on Internet connection sharing" option missing

Latest update: 31.03.2013: got fed up with this issue and bought a wireless router:
Update before that: 30.05.2012 (made it easier to read)

Generally, the first time you share your internet on an ad-hoc connection, everything goes fine. But after that, the "internet connection sharing" option disappears. Impossible to find it. Impossible to share your internet connection again... it is linked to the first ad hoc network you have created and won't be available unless you remove your first-in-your-life-created ad hoc network. The problem is quite tricky as this ad-hoc network is not shown anywhere and restarting your PC will not help.

Here is my solution:
1) Go to your network settings: "Control Panel" / "Network and Sharing Center" and click on "Change adapter settings" (should be called "Manage your internet connections" in my opinion)

2) You should see 2 important connections here:
- your local connection (the one that enables you to connect to the internet). It is probably in state "Network, Shared".
- your wireless connection (the one you will be using to give internet access to your other devices)
You may have other connections but they are not important here. You will NOT have ad hoc connections

3) Right click on your local connection and go to Properties. There should be a tab called "Sharing" which is activated. Disable it (uncheck the first option "Allow other...").

4) Disable your wireless connection.

5) Re-enable your wireless connection. As you have unchecked the sharing, when your wireless connection is re-enabled it should not use the internet-sharing-unique-slot

6) Re-create an ad-hoc connection. The option "Turn on Internet connection sharing" should now appear correctly.

If this is not the case, double check that:
- you have re-enabled your wireless connection and that your wireless connection is up (wifi button red, ...)
- you have followed the steps properly. Particularly the order of the steps is important

How to use your PC internet connection from another device

Hi guys !

This will be the first post of my IT-related blog. I have always wanted to avoid blogging about IT subjects as this is too close to my real job (I am an IT guy, even if this is a quite vast definition). I would rather blog about travels, restaurants, and so on. But something get me started is a stupid "bug" that windows have and I really wanted to share how I solved it (I found it difficult to find a proper explanation on the internet).

So, here is the scenario:
- you have a PC (which has support for wifi, most have nowadays)
- your PC is connected to the internet with something else than wifi (generally an ethernet cable to an internet box)
- you want to use this internet connection for your newly bought ipad/iphone/android tablet/android phone or simply another PC (your friend visiting you, your girlfriend stopping by, ...).

The solution is quite easy (except for the nasty bug described in part 2). All you need to do is tell your PC to create a WIFI zone and that this wifi zone will have access to your internet access:

1) Activate your wifi connection on your PC (you generally have to go through device manager if it was previously disabled there) and may have a small button to press on your PC. Don't connect to any wifi zone, this step is just to ensure your wifi is ready to use for your PC.

2) Go to your network settings (on windows 7: Start/"Control Panel"/"Network and Internet"/"Network and Sharing Center") and click on "Set up a new connection or network"

4) Go to the bottom of the list and select "Set up a wireless ad hoc (computer-to-computer) network". If this option does not appear, your wifi is probably not activated, go back to 1). Also, don't think too much about "computer-to-computer"; in this case, your phone/tablet/... will be considered as a computer.

5) Click "Next" several times, choose a wifi zone name (does not really matter, just a reference to know what to connect to from your tablet/iphone/...).

6) For the security type, I have had problems with WPA2-Personal and ipad, so I recommend WEP (no security means anyone can use your connection... may be a bit scary...). For the security key, just use something simple to remember for you, time to set up the connection on your ipad/iphone/... Don't bother saving the network it won't appear anyway (beginning of the lovely windows bug here).

7) Click Next and click on "Turn on Internet connection sharing". If this option does not appear, please have a look at my next post on this site, I explain the main reason it can happen and how to solve it.

8) Your Wifi zone should now be created and sharing your internet connection. On your ipad/iphone/computer, connects to your wifi zone and enjoy your internet connection :)