Need for Speed

We live in a fast paced world . We like speed in everything.  We are so used to speed around us that slow drivers on the road, slow billing lines in the super market, slow learners, slow internet… they all drive us crazy!

Of all the slow things, nothing is more frustrating than a slow internet! In fact, slow internet is worse than no internet. 2015-08-20_22h30_38

How many times it has happened that the webpage you so desperately want to check will just not load. All you will see is an hour glass timer spinning for an indefinite period of time or the loading circle just continuing to rotate which means that the page is loading. But the webpage would just not load, no matter how many times you stab the refresh button!

Or you want to download a song or an app, and the message you will get is “63 hours 37 minutes remaining”!!

Being connected with the world has become a necessity. So, when emails continue to lie in the outbox or pictures/status updates  fail to get uploaded on Facebook or tweets refuse to fly to the Twitter land or a whatsapp messages refuse to get downloaded, it is so infuriating and is a true test of your patience.

But not anymore. Airtel has rolled out 4G services, nationwide across 296 cities . It is introduced specifically to handle mobile internet and data more efficiently, allowing faster and more reliable mobile connectivity.

If  I have access to such unbelievable speed, OMG!… what would I do… I think apart from dying of happiness, high speed internet would mean that…

Downloads would be a breeze. There would be no dozing off while looking at the screen as songs, games or videos or apps gets downloaded,  because all the downloads and even uploads would happen in a matter of few seconds and at a much faster rate than ever before.

Entertainment on the go. Live TV or videos could be enjoyed without the irritating buffering, anytime, anywhere! Aur Dikhao… Aur Dikhao… button would spoil us for choices as one browses through the various pages of the online shopping portal.

Conversations would flow effortlessly. Face to face conversations across the miles would not encounter the issues of stuttering, blurry or frozen images. There would be no time-lags and delays and no waiting for a few seconds before the other person speaks. One could talk for hours without getting disconnected or disturbed.

Gaming would be fun. When playing online games, due to poor speed, the pings could be really low, along with huge lag spikes and one often gets disconnected from the steam all together. This can be so frustrating and kill the joy of playing a good game. But with high speed, playing online with multiple players would be so exciting and fun.

Remote working. High speed internet would enable the use of a wider range of applications that will stimulate more efficient ways of working, such as allowing people to work remotely and exploit cloud services via their mobile devices.

It is time to join the Airtel 4G revolution and all one needs is a smartphone that is configured to work with a 4G network, a 4G sim and 4G plan which is available at 3G prices.

Given the pace of our life, we have a need for speed. So, it makes sense to get the advantage of faster, superior and uninterrupted connectivity with Airtel 4G. I am going for it! Are you?

Digital Parenting with eKAVACH

Today, kids have access to mobiles, laptops and tablets from a very early age. They stay connected with the digital world not only for education, but also for entertainment, gaming and social networking. Internet is loaded with content that is informative and educational for the children. But, it also has content that can get them into trouble. They can access some nasty websites deliberately or accidentally, through social media they may come in contact with dangerous strangers or may go through cyber-bullying too. Also there could be some more unknown risks which may harm children. As parents, it is very important for us to be vigilant of our children’s online activities and safeguard their interests.

Today, Parental Control apps that can be installed on smartphones and mobile devices are becoming more and more common. I came across, eKAVACH which is an advanced digital parenting app. I am checking out the eKavach app as a part of an activity at BlogAdda

I downloaded the eKAVACH Parent app and asked KG to download the Child app, but we realized that eKAVACH is currently available for use across Apple and Android platforms only and KG uses a BlackBerry phone. So, asked my sister to download the eKAVACH Child app and she added the name of the child as Aman. (This is a fictitious name)

Once the accounts were created on both the phones. We started exploring it.

 Screenshot_2015-04-04-16-09-19 In the settings there are 4 sub categories viz·

  • Application
  • Internet
  • Notifications
  • My Family Time

 

On selecting the Applications, a list of various Applications viz AntiVirus, Dictionary, Facebook, Messenger, CamScanner, Whatsapp and other System Applications which are installed on the Child device, appear. A parent can Allow/Block these apps and also set specific time during which these apps can be accessed.  2
 3 The Internet has 3 sub categories:·

  • Categories
  • Site Filtering
  • Internet Timings
The Internet Categories has 32 parenting appropriate web categories. There are age appropriate permissions on these categories.These categories are labeled as Adult, Aggressive, Arts, Automotive, Criminal Activities Dynamic, Family and Parenting, Fashion, Hobbies and Interests, Lifestyle, Malicious, Religion, Uncategorized etc. A parent can Allow/Block appropriate internet categories. 4
 5 In Site Filtering, parents can specifically enter the website that they want to allow or block.
Site Filtering also has a list of all websites accessed by the child  segregated by time stamp viz Today/ Yesterday/ Last 7 days. For example, the sites shown in the pic were accessed by my sister for the testing of this app. Parents can block specific sites accessed by the child from this feature.  6
 7 In Internet Timings, parents can monitor day-wise and hour-wise internet usage. May be we dont want them to access internet at late night or when at school etc.
My Family Time is a feature that allows the parent to set the wake-up, lunch, dinner and sleep time for the child. Once set, internet and application access will not be available for that time. This allows a child to take a break from the device.  8

Apart from these features, there is a Child’s Device Heartbeat which enables the parents to ensure that the child is within their reach. On specific intervals , say every half an hour or every hour, the eKAVACH  Child will send a ‘heartbeat’ to the parent device along with the location.

After exploring the app, the next step was to test the app.

My sister searched for ‘Adult Jokes/Risque Pics’, and I immediately got a message that a blocked category, Miscellaneous/Dynamic was accessed.  But it allowed my sister to access the content, both on the web as well as in Images. Though when she typed the word ‘Porn’, it said, ‘Cant load search results’.

 9  10  11  12

 So, it is not actually fool proof and may be some aspects of it need to be ironed out. Or may be the parents can block the specific site when they get an alert about it. But beyond a doubt, an app like this is a big step towards safeguarding our children from the threats of the cyber world.

My sister who was acting as a Child in this app testing, raised a point about this app invading a child’s privacy and that it may foster a sense of mistrust between the parent and the child.

I believe, the idea is not to invade the privacy of the child but it is to monitor for red-flags that only adults with years of experience can recognize. By appropriately monitoring and blocking sites that could pose a threat, we can ensure that our child never falls in the trap of ugly and dark problems that internet can put them into.  With apps like eKAVACH , we can recognize the threat and take timely corrective actions.

Askme.Com Foodies Meetup

Last weekend, Askme.com, organized their first ever Foodies Meetup in Jaipur! I went for the meet with my blogging buddy Chicky Kadambari and sister Aashima. The venue chosen for the meet was Oopper Restro Lounge.

The idea was to Discover. Eat. Share.

Discover all about Askme.com and tips and tricks of Food Photography.

Askme.com, which is termed as the Bapp of all apps is a disruptive new age consumer brand.ask-me-app It offers a platform that seamlessly ties search, classified (post an ad), deals (buy now) and commerce. It helps users to have access to hyper-local information 24×7. I liked the concept of communities on Askme. At present there are 6 communities on Askme.com, which are very informative and interesting. They are related to Travel Wellness, Education, Interiors, Weddings and Fashion.

Jaipur Photographer’s Club conducted a 45-minute food photography workshop. Food Photography is in my bucket list so, I was keenly looking forward to learn the basics, tips and tricks when clicking food. Though 45 minutes is too short a time for this vast subject, but it was wonderful to gain some insights from the professional photographers.

Eat the yummy food that they served at Ooper Restro Lounge. The food was good, the service was prompt, the decor was contemporary. The lighting inside was a bit of a dampener, though. It was so dark inside with minimal lighting, thank God for the light from the LCD projector!

2015-03-21 16.02.45

Share the experience on our blog. It was a wonderful experience to network, learn and grow. Met bloggers from Jaipur for the first time and it was awe-inspiring that one of them,  earns in lakhs per month from his blog. And he was kind enough to share his experience too.

Askme Foodie Meet

This is the group pic of all of us at the meet. Did I tell you that Aashima and I won a box of Ferrero Rocher chocolates for answering a few questions. And we all got a coffee mug as a memento. Thank you Askme.com and Jaipur Photographer’s Club!

ABC of Staying Safe

Given the times we live in, the crimes against women are on the rise. No woman feels safe and this is because the crimes against women cut across the boundaries of culture, education, age, religion,  socio-economic status… Though Jaipur is a fairly safe city, still crimes against women do occur here.

How can women feel safe? How can the crimes against women be stopped? I don’t know, if we have answers to the above questions. But we can certainly take responsibility of our safety. Here are the tips to stay alert and safe… the ABC of staying safe…

Awareness is half the Battle Be aware of your surroundings. Don’t let your guard down at any point of time, when alone. You must know where you are and what’s going on around you.
If things seem even a slight unsafe, get out of that place immediately.
Be Bold Look and act confident. Be alert. Use common sense. Always stride along like you know where you’re going.
Respond with a stern voice. Threaten and/or raise your voice to gather a crowd.
Carry Sharp Objects Your safety comes first and it is in your own hands.
Apart from pepper spray, you can also carry a sharp object in your bag at all times.
A pocket knife is handy, and helps you to injure and distract the culprit.
A safety pin in a crowded place is very useful too
Defend Yourself
In a fight for life and death- nothing- is off limits. You must completely overwhelm your attacker both physically and mentally to be successful in surviving.
Break fingers, scratch eyes, slap ears, cut throats, kick groins and knees, stamp the tops of his feet, scratch, bite, spit and scream.
Do not give up or give in to fear…turn your body’s fear into rage and use it against the attacker.
Escape This is always your best option. Run away, yell for help, throw a stone on a car window – do whatever you can to attract attention. And if the attacker is after your purse or laptop bag etc, throw them one way while you run in the other direction.
Family and Friends, First Let your family and friends know about your whereabouts, in case you are late or going to an unknown place and/or with unknown person. Even if there is any change of plan, call home immediately and let someone know where you are.
GPS Based Safety Apps
Download the new GPS based safety apps on your smartphone. The apps like Smart Suraksha helps you to establish contact to get immediate help.
Have a Plan Every attacker has two fears: getting caught or getting hurt. You must have a plan to ruin his plan. Fight verbally, yell or scream – do whatever you can to save your life. Every circumstance is different. Think on your feet and plan for a way out.

Instincts, Trust Them 

Trust and make good use of your ‘gut feel’ or ‘intuition’ or ‘sixth sense’ in each & every place and situation.
If you feel something weird about a situation, get out of it. If you have a sense of dread about walking into a dark area, avoid it.
Don’t ignore or brush aside these instincts which are all telling you to act and flee.
Just Stay Safe PLEASE!!!!!

I am sharing my Smart Suraksha Tips at BlogAdda.com in association with Smart Suraksha App.

Linking this post to the Ultimate Blog Challenge and October’s NaBloPoMo.

Images Courtesy : Google Images

Stay Safe, Please

  • When a third year law student was raped, struck 14 times with a motorcycle helmet, and finally strangled with a wire, at her residence, I wish she had a Smart Suraksha with her.
  • When a 23-year-old physiotherapy student was savagely beaten and gang-raped in a moving bus last year, I wish she had a Smart Suraksha with her.
  • When a 25-year old woman TV journalist was found shot dead in her car while returning home after work, I wish she had a Smart Suraksha with her.
  • When a foreign national was found murdered in mysterious circumstances in a guesthouse,  I wish she had a Smart Suraksha with her.
  • When a 35-year old woman is beaten up daily by her husband and harassed by her in-laws over dowry, I wish she had a Smart Suraksha with her.
  • When a 16-year old is pushed into the flesh trade against her wishes and is beaten up, is ill-treated and kept in captivity, I wish she had a Smart Suraksha with her.
  • When a girl is harassed, lynched and exiled  and later killed by her family because she brought ‘dishonor’ to their family, I wish she had a Smart Suraksha with her.
  • When a old woman is tied up with metal padlocks and chains for around 10 years in the basement of her home by her son, I wish she had a Smart Suraksha with her.
  • When a 20 year old is scared to go out for a stroll in the park adjacent to her home, after dinner, I wish she had a Smart Suraksha with her.
  • When a woman is nervous about traveling alone in a public transport, I wish she had a Smart Suraksha with her.
  • When a woman is jogging on a lonely track, I wish she had a Smart Suraksha with her.

Given the times we live in, the crimes against women are on the rise. No woman feels safe and this is because the crimes against women cut across the boundaries of culture, education, age, religion,  socio-economic status…

As they say, safety is in your own hands. So apart from carrying pepper sprays or being proficient in self defense, women should have another savior in the form of Smart Suraksha.

image

Smart Suraksha, a mobile application, that can track your whereabouts and at a single touch will send an SMS to the pre-listed 5 contacts simultaneously and also the police.

You can download Smart Suraksha App on your phone from Google Play Store here.

Yes, use this app as a weapon that can prevent you from becoming an unfortunate victim.

Stay safe with Smart Suraksha.

I am participating in the Seeking Smart Suraksha contest at BlogAdda.com in association with Smart Suraksha App.

ss-winners-announced

Linking this post to the Ultimate Blog Challenge and October’s NaBloPoMo.

WeChat App Review

OVERVIEW
  • Social Messaging App with 200 million users worldwide
  • imageSocial app on iOS store across 24 countries
  • Only app to offer Video/Audio calling and voice messaging
  • Developed and launched by Tencent.
  • Tencent is the largest internet company in APAC with almost 800 mn monthly active users. It is the third largest Internet Company globally in terms of market capitalization.
  • International (iPhone) WeChat launch: October 27, 2011
  • Current supported languages: 17 languages including English, Hindi, Chinese, Thai, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Spanish and Portuguese.
  • Current supported mobile platforms: iOS, Android, Symbian (V3 & V5) and Windows. Blackberry version launching soon.
  • Current supported networks: Wi-Fi, 2G, 3G and 4G data
  • Latest version (4.3) of WeChat was released in Sep 2012 which supports Video & Audio Calling, Group Voice Messaging, Moments (sharing including text, photo, video & URL).
  • Manually, if you know their WeChat ID
  • Contacts in the Phone
  • Facebook Friends : If you link your Facebook to your WeChat, it will scan your Facebook friends and list the friends who have also linked WeChat and Facebook account together.
  • QR Code : You can also connect with people using the QR code (Quick Response Code) similar to that of PIN Barcode in a BlackBerry.

REVIEW
WeChat is a free mobile communication and social networking app for Smartphones with features like Video/Audio Calling, Push-to-Talk Voice Messaging, Group Chat-text & voice (up to 40 people) and Location based friend-discovery social features.

Download

It’s free to download & install from iOS App Store, Google Play Store, Nokia Store and Windows Marketplace. It’s a huge 14 MB file, so took a bit to download as had to delete a few other apps from the phone.
Once, the app is downloaded, it’s a dream. All the features are simple and easy to follow and navigate, which makes it very easy to use.

Add a Friend

You can add a friend who is using WeChat App …

  • Manually, if you know the WeChat ID of your friend
  • Phone Contacts who also use WeChat app
  • Facebook Friends : WeChat app can sync with your Facebook Friends who also use WeChat app
  • QR Code : Just scan the QR (Quick Response) code of your phone with that of your friend, just like the PIN barcode in BlackBerry
You can chat with people in your phonebook who also have WeChat app by either Text Messaging or Voice Messaging. Now, the best feature of this app is ‘Hold to Talk. So, if you are lazy/tired to type your chat message, you can just use “Hold to Talk” option and talk to your friend. The message is immediately delivered and your friend can click on the message received and listen to what you have to say. This voice messaging is a smart way to chat, without a doubt.

You can have a group chat too, wherein you can have up to 40 people in your chat group.

You can also send a lot of emoticons, Emoji  in your message and there are custom Emoji Art too, which add that extra zing to the conversation.

Apart from Emoticons, you can also send Images, Videos, Friends (Contacts) and Location to your friends in the chat which are the regular features seen in other chatting apps too.

Shake is an innovative feature to connect with people. All you have to do is shake your phone, and the app searches for people who are shaking their phone at that time. So, when I used this feature, my phone found 3 people who were shaking their phones and they were H Xiangtan who was some 4042 Kms away from me, S Zaozhuang was 4016 Kms away and Yunnan R was 2805 kms away from me. Incidentally, all these 3 people were from China, where this app was developed.

Connect with New People

Look Around is another feature which gives you data of people who are not your contacts but on WeChat. In using this option, I got some 80 contacts who were at a distance ranging from 800 meters to 10 kms from my location.You can sort the WeChat users by Location, so you can ‘View females only’, ‘View males only’ or ‘View all’. So, if you are keen to chat with virtual strangers, this is the app for you, though personally, chatting with unknown people is not my kind of scene so I am not going to use this feature!

Drift Bottle is another unique feature of WeChat. Remember, earlier people used to put a message in a bottle and throw it into the sea and hope that somebody gets it. Drift Bottle is exactly this. You write a message and stuff it in the bottle and throw it into the WeChat sea. Somebody will get it and then you can communicate with that person!

Moments
In Moments, you can record daily highlights and share with WeChat contacts. You can also upload a picture from your phone, or take a photo instantly and upload it to WeChat with a caption. Your contacts from the WeChat can post comments to this picture and even Like it. Like is shown with a Heart.

Broadcast Message
In this feature, you can deliver a message to many recipients at once. The recipient will see the message as part of a normal one to one char with you. The best is that the recipient list will not be disclosed. So you can use this feature to do mass marketing of a message/event/information etc.
In short, WeChat app is a complete mobile social networking site by itself and a innovative application for instant messaging which allows to make new friends too.

Rating : 4/5

This review is a part of the Product Reviews Program at BlogAdda.com. For free download of WeChat App and more details visit http://www.wechatapp.com
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