Reflections from a Samsung Mob!ler

This will be my last official post as a Samsung Mob!ler 2010 and I am taking the opportunity to reflect on the experience and share some of my thoughts.... who knows if I'll return in 2011..!

Confused curiosity

I was pleasantly surprised and equally curious as to why I had been chosen to be a Samsung Mob!ler. My understanding was that I would be given some high end Samsung mobile phones and would be asked to write about various aspects of them. With considerable money invested into the program I wondered Why me?’ Granted I have a keen interest in Mobile Phones and a wide social network base but I wasn’t a techno expert, far from it. When we were given tasks from writing about the operating software to testing out the Camera, this curiosity turned into a little confusion; just what was in it for Samsung?

Seeking Purpose

Prior to starting our Mob!iler missions I sought to clarify just how our posts should be framed. Were we to be critical of Samsung? Who was reading our posts? Was the idea to promote Samsung products? Were the Mob!lers an extension of the Samsung marketing wing? Or were we more Research and Development? It seemed the ball was really in our court to shape the missions as we like; to be as critical or as promotional as we’d like to be. Whilst I accepted this, I guess I was seeking a sense of purpose which seemed to be missing somewhat throughout.

Mission (is)Possible

Over the weeks we were given various ‘missions’ where we were asked to review (writing or video blogging) features of the latest Samsung Mobile Phones as well as the newly released Samsung Galaxy Tab. The missions were quite general and presented to us fairly informally, with little instruction; thus there was a lot of variety in the quality and length of each of the Mob!ilers posts. For many of the missions (such as reviewing “Google Android” or “Samsung Bada” operating software) I felt that there was sufficient information already online, both technical and layperson orientated. So again I wondered what was the real point of us writing these reviews? I thus tried to give my blog posts a degree of uniqueness, giving my own personal perspectives and throwing a bit of humour in for good measure.

Saving the Best till last

Of all the missions we were given, the best for me was the last. We were asked to write about what sort of applications we would like to see produced on the Galaxy Tab or for smartphones in general. Finally I thought! My ideas and thoughts would be heard on a senior level, and maybe even shape the future development of applications offered by Samsung. This would be an almost dream job for me; offering creative direction. It plays to my strengths; I probably put most effort into that last mission by doing a lot of research/planning/posting onto other forums. What would be even more rewarding would be to see some of the Mob!lers ideas, not necessarily my own, be taken on board. I guess I liked this task best because I had a clear objective/aim and an audience (at least in my head) that I was writing to.


It’s a shame that the Mob!iler journey is coming to an end. I’ve enjoyed approaching the technology with a critical mind and have built up a little online bubble of people following my posts online. I would have hoped to have met more people from the Samsung team and exchange some thoughts and ideas in person. I would definitely be interested in future collaboration and hope that this is not entirely the end of the road for the Samsung Mob!lers! I guess we’ll see one way or another!

All in all I am grateful to Samsung for providing me with this great opportunity. I’ve met some cool people, am the new owner of some really cool gadgets and who knows may even get the opportunity to visit a really cool part of the world!

Signing out, yours truly

My Top Three Dream Apps... (and a whole lot more!)

One of the best things about being a Samsung Mob!ler is being able to give constructive feedback and reflections and knowing that they will get listened to. So it is with great enthusiasm that I approach this week’s task to write about what sort of Applications I’d like to see on the Galaxy Tab/Galaxy S/Smartphones in general.

I’m a very creative person, and always have a million and one ideas, however I’ve learnt over the years not to let my creative juices overflow and to take the perspectives of other people. I enlisted the help of our friends at XDA developers and began a thread for people to feedback their thoughts. With 2000+ views and over 50 responses it seems like I’m not the only one who has ideas about what sorts of Apps we’d like to see on the new generation of smartphones/tablets. (Check the link:

Whilst there were a handful of complainers (as can be expected), there were also some really good ideas of very practical applications that I hope can one day become a reality. So below I’ve described my top three ideas and also taken from the comments made on the XDA forum and listed them too!

1.       Message Bureau
This has been bugging me for too long! Various 3rd parties have attempted to address this issue, but no one has done it effectively yet. It’s very simple, our Sms/text messages should be as accessible as our emails. They should sync up to our online accounts (Gmail for example.) You should be able to save them, label them, back them up, restore them, access them on numerous devices, search through them etc. I know there’s apps out there that seek to do this, I’ve tried many but they are very basic and there’s just so much potential here. Google/Android/Samsung/Someone needs to sort this out!! It should just be a standard feature.

2.       Photo/Picture editing
I’ve not used the iPad/iPhone apps but word on the blogsphere says they’re pretty impressive. With the beautiful 7inch screen the Galaxy Tab should be offering comprehensive digital picture/photo editing suites. The Tab should be the portable canvass that every artist can carry around with them. I’d love such an app to use multi-touch, various painting tools, picture effects etc. A kind of Photoshop-lite that’s easy and fun to use but at the same time, something that could produce some mini-masterpieces with.
3.       Microsoft Office Android Edition
Something in the depths of my soul tells me the right people somewhere in the world are already talking about this. The Galaxy Tab/Galaxy S come with “ThinkFree Office” which allows you to edit Word, Powerpoint and Excel documents but the level of editing is still very basic; I still need to lug around my Laptop for editing documents. But there’s no reason why we can’t have a fully functional Office Application, we have the hardware just need that dream App to be produced!

Some more ideas that have been suggested, some goldmines here:
  • -          Music editing app
  • -          Voice recognition
  • -          A more spruced up and fully integrated Calendar app
  • -          A more customisable Daily Briefing app
  • -          Google Books Mobile App
  • -          A stock Android Task Manager App (with Switch to function)     
  • -          Copy and Paste functions in email (and elsewhere!)

There’s also been some hardware suggestions for the Galaxy Tab Two. So throwing them in for good measure:
  • -          DVB TV tuner
  • -          Trackerball/optical pad
  • -          Better camera on the Tab! (C’mon Samsung)
  • -          Super AMOLED screen
  • -          More internal memory (It’s pennies really)
  • -          Flashing LED
  • -          A Touch sensitive back cover that you could ‘soft click’ (my idea)
  • -          FM Radio Transmitter
  • -          Virtual Laser Projector Keyboard (my idea)
  • -          Earpiece (so you can make calls like a normal phone, look a bit silly, but good option to have!)
  • -          USB connector/(or include a dock as standard)
  • -          More sensitive touch screen – Sensitive enough to recognise fingerprints! (my idea!)

What do you think? Your thoughts and suggestions most welcome!!
Thanks for reading!

Meeting the CEO of Google, Eric Scmidt

Life as a Samsung Mob!ler has it's ups and downs.

For our latest task we were asked to dream up the ideal Application for a mobile phone or tablet device. I've spent the past week or so putting the new Samsung Galaxy Tab through its paces. It's a mobile phone/Tablet not too different to the Apple iPad, a little less known but a lot more cooler (and portable!) The tab is run by Google Android Software and any application would have to fit in with their system.

So with a million and one ideas buzzing in my head, and knowing I have the ear of some very senior people at Samsung (and who knows who else!) I decided to take a little power nap.

And then... it happened. There I was advising the CEO of Google, Eric Scmidt, about my new application for Android... I had called it Google Ice.

Unfortunately I was rudely woken up by a friend calling from the United States. I guess I should be thankful as had I not been woken up mid-dream I may never have remembered anything! I hadn't had enough time (in my dream) to outline all my plans to Google, but I do remember I had a marker pen and was drawing all over the screen of my Galaxy Tab. Really not sure why.

So, thank you Samsung for facilitating my introduction (even if it was only a dream) to Eric Scmidt. Maybe one day you'll introduce me to him in person ;)

But for now, if anybody here has any grand plans for a Mobile Phone Application, I'm all ears (as are Samsung!)

N.O.V.A HD. – Next Generation Gaming with the Galaxy Tab

N.O.V.A HD. – Next Generation Gaming with the Samsung Galaxy Tab

The 20 man (and-women!)-strong team of Samsung Mob!ler’s have each been gifted a Samsung Galaxy Tab and we’ve been putting it through its paces over the past week or so. Our first task has been to check out the gaming potential that the Galaxy Tab has to offer, and I’ve focused this post on N.O.V.A. - the outstanding 1st-person shoot ‘em up style game from Gameloft.

I must say from the outset that I framed the Galaxy Tab as a mini-computer/multi-media/internet/email/phone sort of device, i.e. not something I would play games on so much; maybe just some basic freebie stuff. However N.O.V.A has surpassed my expectations and blown my mind open to just what the Galaxy Tab can offer.

With graphics and gameplay on par with (if not greater) that that of a PSP, the Galaxy Tab and  N.O.V.A make quite the match. Bringing back memories of the classic N64 Goldeneye, the game comes alive on the Tab’s 7inch TFT HD display. It runs smoothly with no lagging or glitches. There’s an ominous storyline throughout the game, and you get to watch a series of videos and radio messages as you follow the story of a retired marine called back into duty following a surge of alien invasions.

Gameplay and Controls

Whilst there is a degree of repetition throughout, N.O.V.A makes for a challenging and entertaining game. The controls are intuitive, simple to grasp and really put you ‘in to’ the game.  There is a virtual touchscreen analogue stick that moves you about and the direction you ‘face’ can be controlled both via the touchscreen (anywhere on the screen) AND controlled gyroscopically with the Tab’s accelerometer. This means you can look around the game environment by moving the phone up and down and literally point and shoot the bad guys. With buttons to fire, reload, throw grenades, switch weapons as well as well as a host of other interactive (and customisable) features, N.O.V.A can really suck you into the game. With the gyroscope in full action you’ll look like quite the crack –pot playing this on the train or bus, but just think how much fun you’d be having at the same time!

Extra features

There’s various little extra ‘bits’ to N.O.V.A that begin to explore just what potential gaming on the Galaxy Tab could be like. Whilst these are not fully developed, they show a lot of promise. Some of them include:

- There are mini ‘hacking’ games, which are essentially little puzzles that you work through and unlock ammo/progress in the game.
- There are some cool features where you have to interact with the environment in a really intuitive way. This could be sliding an arrow to make the lift move, or spinning/moving parts of the walls/doors to open them. I guess you have to see this live… Check out the video!!
- Multi-player mode – Connect over wifi and play death matches with strangers across the world or just play with your friends over a local network! This is an amazing facet to the game, very fun and very addictive!


There’s a lot of ‘wow’ factors to N.O.V.A, as I’ve advanced through the game it opens up various new tasks, weapons, and  ‘missions’ from sniping to drive-by’s.  I just didn’t expect this level of gaming to come from a tablet. Really impressed.
There’s still a degree of repetitiveness to the game with the same sort of ‘baddies’ appearing and attacking you in the same predictable way. It thus becomes a bit too easy sometimes. There’s a good amount of detail given to the terrain/environment, although this could easily be expanded upon and is largely wasted.
All-in-all, this is a game you just have to see in action! Better still, head down to a Mobile shop and put it through your paces yourself! You will be impressed and I just can’t wait to see what else is in store for the Samsung Galaxy Tab!

Psx4Droid working FULL screen on Samsung Galaxy Tab

Here's a Pic to whet your appetite...! Fully functional Playstation on your Samsung Galaxy Tab!
Crash Bandicoot 2 on Psx4Droid playing full screen on the Galaxy Tab... Video coming soon!

Plays beautifully..!!

The Samsung Galaxy Tab!!

This morning I excitedly popped out of bed, got ready and made my way to a local Carphone Warehouse shop to test out the new Samsung Galaxy Tab.

(Not my hands FYI!)

It’s the first serious competition to Apple’s popular iPad, and the first in what sounds like a new series of Tablet devices from Samsung.  It’s packed full of features, making it an uber cool and handy piece of kit. Essentially it’s somewhere between one those of mini Laptop/Netbooks and a fancy smart phone.

The size of the device has been the centre of much debate; it’s around 4.7 inches wide by 7.5 inches high, making it considerably more portable than the iPad, but still something that you’d struggle to fit in your jeans pocket.  The device was usable both with one hand and two, and had a good weight to it, not too heavy and not too light.

What stood out for me was how easy it was to use; interaction was smooth and fast with little lag. With the Google Android Froyo operating software I was able to run multiple applications at the same time with no observable change in performance.  The built in games, Asphalt 5 and NOVA were outstanding and showed just what potential the device has to over.

N.O.V.A - Amazing shoot em up style game on the Galaxy Tab

It seems the hardware could quite easily have been notched up a gear or two. Whilst the camera software is good, it’s only a meagre three megapixels and if the screen boasted Samsung’s latest AMOLED display technology the Galaxy Tab would really be quite the steal.  I sense it  won’t be long till the Galaxy Tab 2 or equivalent is released by Samsung, I’ve also read that software updates for the operating software are already in the pipes.

Still the Galaxy tab is a fantastic way to browse the internet, explore new games and applications, watch movies/videos as well as make phone calls from! It comes with a decent size of memory and an expandable slot for more.  The proof however, is in the pudding… Looking forward to receive my own Galaxy Tab very soon and I’ll update you all on the ins and outs of what the this amazing new piece of technology can offer!

A is for App!

Taking the spotlight from the giant smart phone manufacturers have been the plethora of innovative and exciting applications (or Apps for short) that have been produced for the new generation of mobile phones. Incorporating the Bada operating software, the new Samsung Wave has been a playground for developers with thousands of inspired Apps having been made available both for purchase and free download. Featured here is one such App showcasing a glimpse of the ingenuity and potential that Apps have to offer.


Ever been so engrossed typing something on your phone that you bump into something/someone, lose track of your way or generally endanger yourself and/or others? Well you wouldn’t be alone! That’s where SmsCamera comes in use!

Rather cleverly it switches on the phone’s camera and allows you to type over the image it produces. In other words as the App describes itself: “you are able to see anything ahead of you while typing and walking.” The text that you type floats over the camera image… that way you can type and see what’s happening in front you (/the camera lens of the phone.)

Here’s a screenshot of the App in action:

Whilst there’s no substitute for simply looking up and being safe and sensible, the App does have some genuine application. I mean who decided that we type onto a blank screen? Why accept the status quo? Aside from the drain on the battery, this App can be pretty useful when you’re rushing around and trying to send that all important text; letting you type away whilst keeping an eye of what’s ahead of you. What’s more is that there is a degree of customisation within the App. Text can be either black or white and can be copied into either a text message or an email.

A definite score for the Samsung Wave, and a little glimpse into just what Apps can do!