6 Ways To Watch Your Business Competitors

Finding the right way to grow your business isn’t as simple as collecting thunderbolt casino. As you look for ways to grow your business you might want to consider paying close attention to what your competitors are doing. Today, monitoring your competitors’ practices involves both off-line and online observation.

Here are some suggestions that you can employ to spy on the competition.

Web Alerts

Sign up for Google Alerts. Google Alerts is a free tool that sends an alert to your inbox whenever something is posted on the web with a particular keyword. For instance, if you offer housekeeping services in Phoenix Arizona, you can ask to receive an alert whenever something is put up on the internet with the words “Phoenix cleaning,” “Phoenix cleaning services,” “cleaning services in Phoenix,” etc.

The alerts can tell you if you or a competitor is mentioned, if anyone posts a review about cleaning services in Phoenix, or publishes information about other Phoenix cleaning news or updates.

The same service for social media alerts is available through Social Mention. This tool alerts you if your keyword appears on blogs and in social platforms. You can see how many times and how often it’s mentioned. Subscribe to an RSS feed for that term so you don’t miss anything.

SimilarWeb

SimilarWeb gives you several different tools so you can get traffic insights for any website. Type in a website’s URL and you’ll get rankings for country and global usage, a category rank of the website and a graph that shows the weekly number of visitors that the site has had over the last six months.

The tools tells you where the site’s visitors are coming from — organic search referrals, social media, display ads, etc. The tool also gives you ideas of sites and businesses that you may want to watch.  You can:

  • Benchmark against your competitors
  • Reveal your competition’s online strategy and analytics
  • Discover new partners, leads or affiliates
  • Identify new players and emerging trends

Alexa

This is one of the more advanced and least expensive tools available to spy on your competitors.You can find out about another site’s traffic, linking keywords, rankings, etc. This is probably the best tool available if you’re watching international sites.

Other information that you can glean from Alexa includes:

  • Average amount of time that visitors spend on the site
  • Daily pageviews per visitor
  • Percent of traffic that the site gets through organic searching
  • Number of sites that link into that URL
  • Competitor keyword matrix
  • Competitor backlink checker
  • Audience overlap tool
  • Site comparisons
  • Tool to find similar sites

What Runs Where

What Runs Where is a tool that provides you with digital intelligence about your competitors’ ads. It’s a resource that specializes in helping businesses watch the competition by:

  • Allowing you to see the top performing creatives in your niche/market
  • Identify winning campaigns that can help you strategize your own marketing campaign
  • Reach larger audiences by identifying new traffic sources
  • Access best in-class data across online markets
  • Real-time information about your competitors’ marketing strategies’ successes and failures

What Runs Where specializes in online media buying and helping businesses buy correctly. It supports over 40 ad networks across the world so you can track your competitors. You’ll receive an alert every time that the competitor publishes new content or launches a new ad.

most Options includes getting results about mobile awareness, advertising awareness or both. Price: You have the choice between getting results about Advertising Awareness, Mobile Awareness, or both. The plan for both, the third option, is the popular and runs $299/month for the Basic plan and $700/month for the Premium plan.

Open Site Explorer

Banklinks are a powerful way to build your presence on a search engine. Backlinks involve links that take a web user back to your site from another site — for instance, if you publish a guest blog on someone else’s site and add a backlink to your site in the content, a reader will be able to click on the link and it will take him to your site. In addition to the traffic that those links engender, search engines give sites that have many external sites that link back to their site higher rankings in SEO results.

Open Site Explorer is a backlinks tool that allows you to follow your competitors’ link-building efforts. You can track the sites that are linking back to them regarding PageRank, anchor text and/or authority/domain. You also can compare link data.

Users find the Open Site Explorer tool useful to find out which sites are linking to the sites of competitors and compare competitors’ link data.

MailCharts

One of the biggest questions of any business is how often to send emailers, when to send the newsletters and how often the email contacts should go out. On the one hand, businesses want to stay in contact with their clientele. On the other hand, they don’t want to overwhelm potential customers or annoy them with too many email messages.

MailCharts allows you to aggregate emails from competing campaigns as a way of influencing your own email marketing strategy.  Mailcharts shows the subject lines of competitors’ email bulletins, shows you how often the competitor is sending emailers and  compares the competitors’ emailers to your campaigns so you can see where your emails stand.

Additionally, the tool gives you comparisons such as timing, frequency, subject line length, etc so you can compare your campaigns to tMailCharts’ archive to ensure you’re in tune with best practices.

Posted in Business | Leave a comment

Are Video Games Bad For Your Health?

Research in Canada has found that video games can seriously damage a person’s health. It seems mothers around the world were right when they lamented their kids’ addictions to PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo. Gamers can play free slots games on the Internet instead of video games and still feel the same excitement.

So, are video games really bad for your health? And are some games worse than others?

Video Game Research

According to the research completed in Canada, first-person shooter games are the most damaging to a person’s health. Studies found a person’s brain is most affected by these games. Both the grey matter and hippocampus areas are hurt when playing certain video games. The research was conducted by the University Montreal, and scientists found the brain’s cells were destroyed in the two areas thanks to playing first-person shooter games.

There is a caveat to the research, however. Gamers who played for long hours without breaks were the ones experiencing ill brain health. Experts have stated gamers shouldn’t overdo it when playing.

But there are ways video games have been proven to improve a person’s health. Like all things, done in moderation, video games can have positive effects.

Health benefits to Playing Video Games

A 2014 joint study by the American Cancer Society, Brown University, and Stony Brook University discovered two-player or puzzle solving games can reduce cravings. This is good for smokers, drinkers, or people struggling with food addiction.

Researchers took MRI scans of players’ brains while playing games and found it activated the same rewards centre that smoking does. Now, individuals looking to stop their bad habits can turn to playing puzzle solving video games to achieve the same feelings they get from smoking or other addictions.

Another study, this one conducted by the University of Washington Harborview Burn Center found video games can reduce pain in hospital patients. The university conducted an experiment where patients undergoing treatment for severe burns were made to play a game called Snow World. Players wore virtual reality headsets during gameplay. The study found patients ignored pain 92 percent of the time while playing the game. Researchers believe patients were able to focus on something other than pain, which resulted in the lower percentage of reports.

In recent years, post-traumatic stress disorder has made headlines. PTSD has been found in a variety of segments of people following traumatic experiences. Oxford University researchers have found Tetris reduces the symptoms in PTSD suffers. Tetris was able to prevent flashbacks and memories being triggered in the brain. This allowed PTSD patients to experiences fewer symptoms. Slots casino games can also improve a player’s experience with its fantastic range of intuitive games.

Are Video Games the Answer?

Despite critics of video games blaming them for a variety of society’s problems, they actually provide a number of health benefits. Overexposure to certain games may negatively affect the brain over time. However, certain games can improve a person’s health greatly. Gamers may get a bad rap, but playing offers them the chance to improve an area of health with every session.

Posted in Gaming | Leave a comment

Best Money Transfers Apps – Android And iOS

If you’re over 40, you surely still remember the hassle of going to a physical bank branch nearby, or at the very least pick up the (landline) phone, to use your banks. If you want to transfer money to a friend, you would have to give him cash, pay him with a check, or head all the way to your bank to provide your friends details, which were then quickly scribbled on a piece of scrappy paper and faxed over to someone at the head office.

The advancements made with personal finance service, and utmostly banks, have made a tremendous impact on our life. We can spend less time on certain actions and spend more time leisuring.

With that being said, not all money transfer applications are made alike. Most bank and money transfer apps are quite good, and adaptable to multiple devices, but there are a few that are simply a work of art.

Venmo

PayPal owned Venmo is one of the most popular money transfer apps in this genre. For USA-based users who want to transfer money within their country, Venmo provides an hassle free option of doing so. It’s so simple that anyone can use it, but so slick and fast that there is no real reason why would anyone not use it. You can connect Venmo direct into your checking account and it will not cost you anything to send or receive money into your account. The service does charge 3% per credit-card funded transaction.

Tangerine 

Tangerine bank is a subsidiary of Scotiabank, the third biggest bank in Canada. What Tangerine is about is a true A to Z online banking experience. When you have an account with Tangerine bank, there is little you cannot do online. Their app is extremely easy to use, and transferring money through a bank locally is inexpensive and fast.

World First

Elected the best money transfer app for this year, World First has a lot of positives going for it. The company has great reviews online, a very friendly website, and  a really smooth mobile app. What you can do with World First app isn’t nearly as simple as what Venmo offers. With World First you could transfer money from your bank account abroad, with World First serving as the middleman and performing the currency exchange as per your specifications, all of that for a discounted price against banks.

Transferwise

Transferwise is a company you must have heard of by now. It is not very different from World First or any of the other companies specializing in cross border payments, in the way it operates, but its levels of transparency and user experience are just remarkable.

Payoneer

Payoneer has also received a lot of recognition as both a tech and payments company. The solution the company offers is completely unique and very hard to replicate. If you sign up to Payoneer you are able to receive funds into your Payoneer account. The payee must be a business. The special part is that with Payoneer you can actually withdraw your funds as cash money via any ATM. In fact, this solution is so unique and the payment operation runs so smooth that even mighty Google has decided to rely on it. It may be not as cheap as Transferwise but Payoneer serves as a completely different function for different type of audience.

This concludes my list of the top 5 money transfer apps in the world in 2018. There are hundreds or thousand more apps and companies providing similar services, some may be better, but you can be rest assured the ones on this list are at the very least among the best money transfer apps right now.

Posted in Apps | Leave a comment

Blockchain Will Dramatically Increase The Value Of The Mobile Games Market

If you are looking for an industry likely to be completely disrupted by blockchain technology, look no further than the mobile gaming industry. Blockchain mobile gaming is already turning the gaming sector on its head; this is expected to continue as a landslide of enthusiast players and investors discover the multitude of opportunities blockchain tech provides and speaking of opportunities slots play casinos offers you best iGaming experience. Here are five ways blockchain technology will permanently change the future of mobile gaming.

Blockchains Will Disrupt Traditional Gaming Companies

The world is gradually unravelling new ways to use Blockchain technology. Blockchains are known for their ability to bring decentralization to massive industries, pushing the power from centralized organizations to the consumers themselves. Blockchains will do the same thing for gaming. To move from gaming universes where corporations own the to platforms that are owned by the users themselves would have huge complication. This will provide gamers with more control and flexibility when it comes to their gaming experience.

Battling Back Against the Hacks

Arguably blockchain’s biggest impact won’t actually be customer facing. The mobile game industry has faced something of security crisis in recent years. Blockchain could prove to be the cure for these woes, as it would address major problems related to security and player retention. Cybertheft and duplication is abundant in 2018, blockchain would make the registration process attached to any game or system transparent, with player assets being instantly verifiable. Blockchain helps bring together a clear ownership system that will eliminate the murky and sometimes controversial nature of in-game transactions. This could potentially entice players to invest more funds and time into gaming too on the understanding that it is a secure environment.

Blockchains Will Give The Power Back To Gamers

Gaming experiences controlled by corporations pose several issues:

  • Control over rules
  • Control over transactions
  • Control over access
  • Control over in-world currency

Done right, blockchain powered gaming can remove these limits, letting gamers take more control over their experiences.

Blockchains Will Enable Cross-Platform Support

As long as gaming content is created on a centralized platform cross-platform support will suffer. By reducing a consumer’s or developer’s ability to use multiple platforms, gaming companies have limited the growth of in-world communities. Decentralized platforms, powered by blockchain technologies, will give gamers and developers what they really crave: full control. Only then will users experience the best gaming has to offer.

Crowdfunding Restrictions

One of the most popular ways for indie developers to fund their projects is through crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter, but they currently have limited in-game incentives to offer their backers. The blockchain allows indie developers the ability to offer rare/discounted exclusive virtual items for immediate delivery to ally. This means players would receive their items straight away, store them in their secure wallet for later, and be able to use them immediately after the game is released.

Like any other technology revolution, blockchain will take time to mature. It is still nascent, especially when applied to gaming. But when the disruption does happen, the impacts will be pervasive, shifting ownership, control, and user experiences. It all makes the gaming industry is as exciting as ever.

Posted in Blockchain Tech | Leave a comment

Hotspot Shield VPN Vs. Nord VPN – Which One Is Better?

While browsing the internet today, folks are faced with so many challenges ranging from data throttling by their own network providers, to malware, to cyber-attack, to government agencies and corporations keeping tabs on them and so on. In the midst of all these challenges the need for a very effective tool that provides anonymity, security as well as other astounding services to improve the overall browsing experience continues to have a high demand all over the world.

Fortunately, such a tool already exists in the form of Virtual Private Networks (VPN). The demand for the best VPNs is on the increase and the industry has been growing steadily with many new VPNs companies springing up almost every year.

With so many good VPNs available to users worldwide today, there is a need to effectively evaluate some of these services so that users can easily decide for themselves which particular VPN best suits their needs. To successfully achieve this, some of the best VPN services have to be compared just like other similar products are compared on the market.

In this review, we compare NordVPN and Hotspot Shield which are two of the best and biggest VPN service providers today.You can read a review about Hotspot shield at BestVPN24.com.

Our basis of Comparison

In order to have an in-depth knowledge of each, we critically examined both VPN service provider based on some key factors like; their overall performance, privacy and security, speed, pricing packages, features amongst others.

Features

Number of servers: NordVPN boast of more than 4000 servers in over 100 countries which makes it one of the biggest companies in the VPN industry, Hotspot Shield has just about 2500 servers in 25 countries in the world.

Encryption Protocols: The encryption protocol utilized by any VPN service provider to a large extent determines how seriously it takes the security and privacy of its users and also how it intends to deliver its promise of keeping their online activities safe, secure and fast. NordVPN utilizes the state of the art AES 256- bit double encryption together with tunneling protocols like OpenVPN, PPTP, IPSec, and L2TP to provide the best security possible. Hotspot Shield uses the obsolete AES-128 encryption protocol as well as the Catapult Hydra tunneling protocol.

Kill Switch and DNS Leak Protection: A kill-Switch is a vital part of the security infrastructure of the best VPN services. In situations where there is a failure in a secure connection, a kill-switch quickly terminates such a connection and protects users from any likely attack.

Both Hotspot Shield and NordVPN have a Kill-switch. However, Only NordVPN has a smart DNS and a DNS leak protection which also reinforces its security system and makes it one of the best in the industry.

Support

Hotspot Shield VPN is compactable with all the major operating systems such as Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android. NordVPN is compactable with Android, iOS, Mac, Windows and Linus devices.

In addition, NordVPN allows users up to 6 simultaneous connections while Hotspot Shield allows for 5 connections at once.

Log Policy

The best VPN companies have a strict no log policy which implies that the activities of users are not monitored or tracked. Both NordVPN and Hotspot Shield have zero-logs policies.

Streaming and Torrenting Services

A VPNs ability to bypass geo-locked contents and allow users access to premium contents from any part of the world is truly one of its most prized features. Hotspot Shield and NordVPN allow users access to contents from popular sites like BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Amazon Prime and many others.

Both Hotspot Shield and NordVPN allow Torrenting but only NordVPN has dedicated Torrenting servers.

Split Tunneling

Many VPN service providers allow user’s access to a split tunneling feature that hides their connection while they perform certain tasks online. Hotspot shield provides this service for its users through its Chrome browser extension; NordVPN does not have this feature.

Money Back Guarantee: This feature ensures that short-term users or first-time users can easily get a feel for the services offered by their favorite VPNs before getting a subscription. Both NordVPN and Hotspot shield offer a money back guarantee service. NordVPN offers a 30-days money back guarantee while hotspot shield offers an amazing 45-day money back guarantee.

Security and Privacy

In terms of security of users, Hotspot shield appears to be lagging behind as it uses the obsolete AES -128 encryption with the relatively unknown Catapult Hydra protocol as opposed to the AES-256 and several encryption protocols (OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP) utilized by NordVPN and many of the best VPNs services today.

Both VPN service providers have a Kill-switch and a no logging policy which is particularly helpful in offering users the much-needed anonymity and privacy. Howbeit, the free plan of Hotspot shield has a partial privacy policy as users have to deal with ads.

Customer Support System

The best products and services in any industry have a very good customer support system that ensures that users’ queries are promptly and efficiently solved at all times. Hotspot shield utilizes the ticketing customer support system which implies that users have to generate a ticket, fill a form, submit and wait for a period of time before their queries are addressed. NordVPN has a more robust customer support system that makes use of several channels such as the 24/7 live chat, e-forms, email and also their website.

Performance

In terms of performance, Nord VPN utilizes more than 3500 servers in over 100 countries worldwide while hotspot shield users only have access to about 2500 servers in 25 countries.

While most VPNs affect browsing and streaming speeds, overall, the speed test conducted on both VPNs showed that they are really stable and reliable. They both compete favorably with each other in terms of speeds. Average speeds of 90 Mbps in places in Europe, 80Mbps in Asia, and 70Mbps in the US were recorded from their servers. Despite being the smaller VPN Company in terms of the number of available servers Hotspot shield appears to be providing a premium service for its users in terms of speed.

Price System

One of the first things people consider in any market is the prices of products and services in relation to the value or utility they can derive from them. In this regards, Hotspot shield offers users four packages/plans. It’s a one month plan cost about $12.99, the 6-months plan costs $8.99/mnt, and the 1-year plan costs $5.99/mnt and lastly, the lifetime plan costs just $119.99. Potential or first-time Hotspot shield users can take full advantage of its free plan as well as its very generous 45-days money back guarantee service.

NordVPN offers users a monthly subscription at $11.95, a 1-year subscription that costs $5.75/mnt, and a 2-year subscription that costs $3.29/mnt. While it has no free plans it offers users a 30-day money back guarantee.

Conclusion

Hotspot shield and NordVPN performed exceptionally well on the various test we carried out on them. While NordVPN appears to be the all-around better service of the two in terms of features, robust encryption protocols, and excellent customer support etc, we were quite impressed with the performance of hotspot shield in terms of speed, security and privacy.

Posted in VPN | Leave a comment

7 Data Analysis And Visualization Libraries For Python

This blog post covers seven popular data analysis and visualization libraries for Python. We’ll start with the SciPy stack, a set of libraries that offer powerful algorithms and data structures for doing scientific computing. In addition, we’ll cover more recent libraries geared at web designers and novice data scientists.

Python has become the language of choice for many new data scientists. According to Iflexion company experts, the reason Python development is popular among data scientists is that the language is easy to learn and comes with a bunch of great tools. Think of Anaconda, a free and open source distribution of both Python and R that comes with an installation of the Jupyter Notebook application. This is a handy application that lets you store code, data, plots, and commentary in a single document and uses a web browser for opening code documents that can be downloaded, edited, and shared.

Image source: https://www.kdnuggets.com/2018/05/poll-tools-analytics-data-science-machine-learning-results.html

Data analysis and visualization with Python

Let’s have a look at what is meant by data analysis and visualization. Both data analysis and visualization are important steps in the data science workflow. Data scientists collect data to answer questions and test hypotheses. After that, they need to communicate their findings to the decision-making team in an effective and engaging way. With so many visualization types available (pie charts, line plots, scatter plots), a data scientist is required to be an expert in the field and choose the visualization that communicates the message best.

The same goes for Python visualization libraries. The following is only a small sample of what’s available: the libraries that make up the SciPy stack form the basis for many other Python data science libraries and are must-know for any data scientist.

Python libraries for data analysis

The SciPy stack consists of five basic Python libraries that are distributed together as a tool for data analysis and visualization: NumPy, SciPy, Pandas, iPython, and Matplotlib. In this post, we’ll cover only four of them, as iPython nowadays serves as the backend of the Jupyter Notebook application and as an interactive Python shell.

NumPy is a library for scientific computing. As we’ll see below, Pandas uses NumPy’s functionality as the basis for its own data objects. NumPy offers a data object called NumPy array that can be used for storing and manipulating data in multidimensional arrays and matrices. This data object speeds up your calculations drastically when compared to working with Python lists.

Pandas takes NumPy’s functionality one step further, enabling you to work with tabular data that uses rows and columns, as well as separate rows with multiple columns. The first is stored in a DataFrame object, the second in a Series object. You can read and write many different file formats with tabular data into Pandas, including Excel spreadsheets. The amount of functionality offered by Pandas for slicing, summarizing, and presenting data is impressive. Like the Seaborn library discussed below, it is excellent for working with tabular data.

Finally, the SciPy extends the NumPy library, offering a set of submodules for scientific and technical computing based on NumPy arrays.

Choosing a Python library for Data Visualization

There are many Python libraries available for data visualization. They can be categorized using the following attributes: platform, functionality, and level of use. Platform refers to either desktop or web-based: because Python is by default a desktop environment (even though you’re using a web browser in case of a Jupyter Notebook), your visuals cannot be directly or easily embedded in an external webpage. Some more recent libraries were written with this concept in mind, enabling you to transfer them easily in a web environment, for example, using JSON.

Functionality refers to the amount and type of functionality offered by a library. The idea is that new visualization libraries extend the functionality available in older libraries, and if a certain type of visualization is not supported by one library, it can often be found in a newer one. Finally, the level of use refers to high or low-level libraries. High-level libraries are easier to use, however, they offer less flexibility than low-level libraries.

Popular Data Visualization Libraries

The following Python libraries are recommended for performing data visualization:

Matplotlib is the most popular library for plotting and is part of the SciPy stack. It was first released in 2003 and offers a wide range of graphs such as histograms, line plots, 3D plots, and more. It integrates really well with Jupyter Notebooks so you can use it inside code cells to directly show the results of your analysis. The Matplotlib homepage has a gallery that shows what you can do with it, so it’s helpful if you’re not sure yet which type of data visualizations fits your data and message best. It offers a lot of flexibility to developers.

Seaborn is built on top of Matplotlib. It integrates really well with Pandas and is meant to simplify doing data visualization. This is why it’s often used in data science tutorials in favor of Matplotlib. It also works well with visualizing pandas DataFrames, unlike Matplotlib.

Bokeh is not part of the SciPy stack and takes a different approach than the first two libraries. You can use it to create interactive plots and transform them into JSON so data can be presented to a web browser. This can also be visuals made with Matplotlib or Seaborn. With Bokeh, you can build complex statistical plots quickly using little code, but it has relatively fewer visualization options when compared to D3.js, a popular open-source JavaScript multipurpose language.

Another interesting option is Plotly, an online collaborative data analysis, and graphing tool. Python users can download a free Python API that gives access to all of Plotly’s functionality from Python, both online and offline.

Conclusion

In this blog post, we covered seven popular Python libraries for data analysis and visualization. We started with the SciPy stack, consisting of powerful libraries such as Numpy and Pandas. These are all indispensable libraries that offer mathematical and numerical algorithms, in combination with powerful data objects that optimize complex and large computations.

Because Python offers separate libraries for data analysis and visualization, many additional libraries are available for added functionality. The most popular visualization library is Matplotlib, which has been around for fifteen years now and is part of the SciPy stack. However, beginning data scientists might prefer Seaborn, a library built on top of Matplotlib that simplifies creating a great variety of data visualizations.

Posted in Programming | Leave a comment

Use Your Devices Wisely Because They Are Here To Stay

How To Protect Our Devices

Technology is designed to keep us connected to each other, to our families and friends, to our entertainment lives, and to our workplace. Devices like smartphones, iPhones, tablets, smart watches, notebooks, etc., are our everyday tools which we use to enrich our lives. But if we use them daily, how do we keep them physically protected from bumps, breakage, scratches, and dust?

The same brand manufacturers that provide our devices have also created protection for them. They have created protective products for iPhones and other devices we can’t live without. Companies, like BodyGuardz, have created the best screen protectors, phone cases and full-body protective skins for iPhone Xs smartphones and more.

In addition to protecting our devices, online tech magazine sites help consumers choose the right devices for their usage. Do you want to learn more about products like techie apps, software, security, cloud computing, windows, Macs, phone iOS systems and much more? See sites that provide up-to-the-minute information on new releases and how they operate.

Protect Your Personal Information

There are other protective measures for our devices that help to keep our personal information protected. Many online tech magazine websites talk about how portable our devices are, yet we must also take steps to remain safe in a world of cyber-security.

Protective measures that can be taken for security sake can include the following:

1. Password Protection

creating passwords or pins is almost an oxymoron now, but tips and tricks must be used to stay safe. Don’t use personal information to create passwords. Don’t get lazy and create the same passwords for all your other sites. Reusing passwords has become the top reason why people have been a victim of .

2. Lockout

New technology has a built-in lockout feature that locks your device automatically if someone other than yourself attempts to enter fraudulent entry codes. You can set the lock-out feature with the number of attempts that you want it to lock based on someone trying to get your information.

3. Encryption

Many hand-held devices contain data encryption security.

4. Auto-wipe

In addition to the lockout feature, there is auto-wipe. When an unauthorized person attempts to use your device, the auto-wipe option will automatically erase all your data. You, however, can reset it to its original default settings.

Technology Enhances Our Lives

New technological devices will involve even greater benefits for our lives than they do today. Our future in technology is introducing driverless cars, robots, interactive appliances, and other amazing devices. Advanced technology at our fingertips changes how we live our lives from just a couple of years ago.

Using modern technology in our work life allows us to work from home with mobile devices and downloadable apps. We are no longer confined to a physical space. Even in a brick-n-mortar building, we can move around with a mobile device to conduct business around the world. Research tells us that if a business is to remain viable, they must incorporate new technology.

Other new technology affects our domestic lives. As parents, we use to ask our children about who their friends were and about their movements outside the home. Today, we can find our children on the Internet and follow their activities. Teachers once gave children notes to take home to their parents. However, today, through our mobile devices, teachers can keep students and parents informed through mobile educational platforms.

Speaking of communications, we can now text, email, Skype, Facebook, Twitter anyone within a matter of seconds. To pay bills, all we have to do is create an account with a vendor and pay online. To bank, we don’t need to drive to our local banking institutions, we can bank online. Even our children are learning new ways to play with current tech devices that emerge them into 3-D and virtual reality environments.

Living in the 21st century, we are witnessing a worldwide explosion of advanced technology that we don’t seem to be able to live without. New technology can order our food, help to think for us, ease our physical well-being at work, interpret our medical ailments, and more. Let’s embrace this new futuristic lifestyle by keeping our information protected, keeping our devices protected, and enjoy the perks of technology.

Posted in Security | Leave a comment

Why Some Mobile Video Games Don’t Turn Out On Android

Android is a great platform for enjoying games on, with the many great devices to play on, the great controllers available, and the sheer number of games to choose from which includes various genres like racing, arcade, online casino etc.  that are available. But even with so many games, if you compare to iOS, there are some notable omissions. Some games just never release on Android or are very delayed. While buying an Android device means that you’re going to get some great games no matter how you shake it, you’re bound to miss out on some gems. So, why do so many games get delayed or just never arrive on Android?

Android’s Piracy Problem

The piracy on Android train continues to roll on, with developers continually favoring iOS as a result. And there doesn’t appear to be much being done on Google’s end to quell the piracy fears, either. Android apps are distributed in an APK (Android application package) file. Hackers can crack these APKs, bypassing security checks that look to see whether the user bought the game. Unlike the locked down iPhone, where it is much harder to work around the core software, Android is open source and code accessible. Hackers then distribute the apps on select sites and torrent listings. Users then “sideload” the cracked APKs onto their devices by asking Android to allow installation from unknown sources. If people aren’t buying premium apps, developers won’t make money charging premium prices. While the Google Play store led on global app downloads in the third quarter of 2017, with 90 percent more than iOS, iOS store revenue beat out Google Play by 80 percent, according to a verge report.

Positioning of iPhone and Android devices

iPhones are positioned as ‘premium’ smartphones on the other hand, Android has a host of smartphones targeting the lower end of the buyer-spectrum, while all the flagship iPhones have been successful, many low-end Android phones have failed in the last few quarters. This clearly shows that iOS, due to its strong brand positioning, is a ‘safer’ platform for developers to create apps for.

Money

Nobody gets into business for charity and app development business is no different to it. The apple app store is the only host for apps for the IOS market. That keeps a tight control on security. Through app store, most of the apps being sold are through purchases and in-purchases. The IOS market is not driven by advertisements. A developer can see direct revenue for his work through the feedback of serious buyers. This market is not driven by advertisements for revenue.

Support

With Android being open source it is practically impossible for app developer to ensure quality for all devices where with Apple it is easily possible. During the building and mobile app testing phases, developers have to check whether their software is optimized for every popular Android device. A lot of time-consuming research needs to go into this. In contrast, an iOS app needs to be optimized for the latest iPhones, iPads and iPod Touch. This makes the job of coders as well as UI/UX designers a lot easier.

Posted in Gaming | Leave a comment

Why Is My Credit Score So Low

When you are checking out at your favorite store, you may be asked if you want a store card.  Sometimes this comes with free gifts or a good coupon.  Even if you have cash in hand it can be beneficial to do the purchase through the store options for these advantages.  You find yourself completing the application with just a simple push of a button and then the ultimate betrayal…you’re not approved.

For some reason, maybe one of which you’re not even aware, your credit score is not acceptable enough for the store to take the risk on you.

This can be such a stressful event.  You will need to get to the bottom of this because this is a number that follows you all throughout your life.  It can fluctuate frequently and must be watching. This is important to your financial future.

There are mitigating factors that play into where your DTI (debt to income) ratio comes from.  Some of the factor that kill your credit are:

  • High Debt
  • Late Payments
  • Missed payments
  • Low diversity
  • Short credit history

Some of the listed items you can control and/or correct with a little work.  Try to figure out what went wrong and start there.  If it is a missed or late payment you may can possibly contact that particular business and get it corrected.  If it is the other instances then take some time to work on it.  Make smart purchases paid off as soon as you have the cash in hand and make sure they are properly credited to either your account or balance.  Follow the path to what went wrong and take the steps necessary to correct them, make them a more acceptable level.

Once you know what happened, stay up to date with the three major credit bureaus.  Transunion, Experian, and Equifax are the bureaus.  You can make an account to check your score and report.

If you don’t have the time to check them all, you can use a company that can help you improve your credit score. Different purchase and lenders will require different scores. The better your credit range the lower your interest rate. Always try to keep the debt low and the income high to achieve a good score.

Remember once you know your number and know how it got there be vigilant not to let the same mistakes happen again.  This is an ever-changing number throughout your life and has implications in most all you want or need.

Larger purchases, like for a vehicle or a home will require stronger credit profiles. Stay in charge of your debts, loans and payment history. A missed or late payment will greatly impact your score and is takes longer to fall off your report.

Also, decide how bad you want or need the item your credit will be checked for. When you check your score, it is considered a soft inquiry and doesn’t do any harm. When lenders check your credit, it is considered a hard inquiry. You are only allowed a few hard inquiries per year before you start to get points deducted. The takeaway is that you need to be responsible with your credit to get a good credit score.

Posted in Finance | Leave a comment

How To Wipe Out Facebook Malware

With more than 2.23 billion users, Facebook is the No. 1 social network site in the world by leaps and bounds. That sort of popularity is fantastic for business, but is also exposes the social media giant to all sorts of troublemakers. Some are harmless, but others are out to exploit as many profiles as possible for the purpose of illegally-made profit.

Facebook is a playground for cybercriminals and hackers seeking to exploit vulnerabilities. The average Facebook user has 338 friends connected to their profiles, which means the perfectly executed virus could be replicated 338 times without the hacker having to lift a finger. Even more dangerous it that Facebook has a huge number of apps connect to it every day. That makes it a prime target for fake apps to get attached to user profiles.

How to Avoid Facebook Malware

The best way to avoid Facebook malware is to have a heavily skeptical eye for anything that comes your way when using the social media giant. Claims for get-rich schemes, invitations to join groups that seem scandalous or illegal, friend requests from people you don’t know your people using a false name, and attempts to sign into your account that you didn’t authorize all fall under this category. These attempts are no more real than when you get the email from the son of the deposed king of Nigeria asking you to help him move $3 million to his Swiss bank account. If you’re confused about some of the messages you’re getting, you can also consult Facebook’s own guide to malware, which gives you an indication of what sort of offers you will typical see on the social media juggernaut. This should help you pick between fake and real. Your best bet to avoiding Facebook malware is to have a strong antivirus software running on your computer at all times. While no antivirus software is perfect, those rated the highest will be able to identify when nefarious apps are trying to install something on your computer without your permission. If you’re looking to upgrade your antivirus software or in the market for the first time, see the positives and negatives of some of the leading brands.

How to Remove Facebook Malware

If malware has followed you home from Facebook, you need to act quickly to remove it from your computer before it does more damage. A good first step might be to post on Facebook that your account may have been compromised and warn others about how the malware got onto your account, if you know the root cause.

From there, backup all your data so that if things get hairy, your vital information will be safe. Your next step is to disconnect your computer from the Internet. If you’re using an Ethernet cord, unplug it. If you’re on a wireless network, turn the computer’s WiFi off. This slow or stop a lot of malware activity on your computers, since most of it is reliant on Internet communication to activate.

Now boot your computer in safe mode and install an antivirus kit to seek out and destroy the malware that has compromised your computer. This will allow the software to search your system without the malware being able to respond and eliminate it altogether.

Posted in Security, Tips and Hacks | Leave a comment