How to pay for your friends’ WhatsApp subscription

WhatsApp now has a new feature with which you can buy subscription packages for your friends. I’m not quite sure whether this is a new feature or it has been seen ages.

I’m using an unreleased WhatsApp APK that I pulled off from the WhatsApp website to hide my Last Seen, status and profile photo. And, this APK has this feature.

If the users find these features useful, these features should appear in the markets soon.

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Pay for a friend on WhatsApp

Getting back to the topic, purchasing a WhatsApp subscription package for your friends is easy. You can purchase for any contact that you have on your WhatsApp contacts list. You cannot purchase the subscription package for more than one friend at once.

Is this feature useful?

This feature should be useful for those who do not have a credit card that works with Google Wallet or PayPal. You can also use this to gift subscription packages to your dear ones on their special days.

If you plan on changing your number, you can take your account information along with that.

How to purchase for your friends?

  1. Go to More > Settings > Contacts > Pay for a friend in the app.
  2. Choose a friend and make payment for 1, 3 or 5 years package using Google Wallet, PayPal or the payment URL.
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Purchase screen on WhatsApp

Once the payment is made, your friend will be notified about this. Note that if your friend is using Android, BlackBerry or BlackBerry 10, he’ll see the updated expiry date immediately. If your friend is using iPhone, Nokia or Windows phone, he’ll have to restart the device to see the new expiry date.

If you are unable to purchase for your friend at some time, you may try again after some time. Or maybe purchasing for that friend isn’t available at that time.

Related : Facebook buys WhatsApp for $16 billion

If you wish to get this feature immediately, instead of waiting for official market rollout, you can download the new APK in the WhatsApp website.

Paytm brings new user interface, ‘Fast Forward’, new billers

Paytm is the leading mobile, data recharges and bill payments service in India. It has a new user interface, a new feature called Fast Forward and new billers now.

#1 New user interface

The user interface has been revamped completely, is simple and shows everything necessary in one single page. The Paytm logo has also been given a revamp.

#2 ‘Fast Forward’ for quick recharges

There is no denying that having your Paytm cash loaded helps you make recharges within seconds. Patym cash has been useful till date and is still in use.

Online Recharge- Online Prepaid Mobile

Fast Forward is a new option in the recharge section that helps you make recharges in one click. After you enter the recharge details, enable the Fast Forward option, available below in the recharges section, to immediately make the recharge. You should make sure that your Paytm cash is loaded, or you will face troubles.

#3 New Billers

Paytm has a couple of new billers now. They are :

  1. Mahanagar gas service
  2. 2 new landline billers – MTNL and Tata
  3. 5 new electricity billers – BSES, Tata Power, Reliance energy, MSEB

And also, Paytm has waived the additional fee placed on postpaid bills for a short time now.

LG Nexus 4 to be available in India by November

Yesterday Google made the Nexus 4 phone official in a blog post. LG is manufacturing the Nexus 4 phone. It will be initially available on 13th November in U.S, U.K, Australia, France, Germany, Canada and Spain.

Asus has already confirmed the Nexus 7 being available in India possibly in the month of November. LG India officials have reportedly confirmed that the new phone Nexus 4 will also be made available in India by November end.

The phone is priced very competitively at $299 for its 8GB unlocked version. Even with duties and taxes, LG could price it in India for around Rs. 20,000 and it will be a very competitive price for such a powerful phone with the latest stock Android version on it.

Why LG Nexus 4 in India is very likely?

Samsung last year had let down a lot of Android users who expected it to roll out Galaxy Nexus in India. Unfortunately Samsung shelved any plans for a Nexus phone in India (if there were any in the first place) possibly to not have it clash with its Galaxy S3 launch.

LG itself does not have a phone that sells as well as Galaxy S3 in India. So it makes sense for LG to roll out a very competitive and in-demand phone in India.

Use Gmail’s Canned Response Feature on Your Android Phone

If you are using Gmail for managing your work like I do, then you might have heard about Gmail’s canned response feature. It is a feature which allows users to send a pre-defined reply to similar emails.

For example, if someone asks for my contact details via email, I usually reply with a canned message. It saves me time and does not require me to type the same email over and over again.

Unfortunately, canned response feature is not available on my Android phone’s Gmail app.

Thankfully now there is an Android App which allows users to copy to clipboard the canned message and paste it in while replying on the Gmail app.

How Gmail Canned Reponses works!

  • Download Gmail Canned Responses on your Android phone from this link.
  • The app will prompt you to use OAuth authentication to get connected with your Gmail account, where you have stored your Canned responses.
  • Now a list of your canned responses will show up on the app. Select one from the list and the message is copied to the clipboard of your phone.
  • Now go back to using your Gmail App and while replying, and paste the canned response.

Unfortunately, canned response is still a feature in Labs section of Gmail preferences. This means it is still a beta product and that explains why it has not been yet included in the official Android app for Gmail.

Try out Canned Responses and drop in your comments.

Link: Canned Gmail Responses (Android)

Related: Check out 10 Gmail Tips 

Ustream’s new iPhone app lets you broadcast live videos on to Facebook


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Ustream is one of the best websites to live stream videos or watch webcasts on the internet. If you have ever dreamed of
broadcasting live videos on to your Facebook, they’ve got you covered – Broadcast For Friends, their new iPhone app let’s you do just that.

Apparently, this app is one of its kind, aiming to make live video broadcasting dead simple. To get started, you need the iPhone app (which is still not released for public), and authorize it through your Facebook account.

Your live video can be public or just restricted to your friends. Just after you stop broadcasting the video, a copy of it gets saved on to Facebook which can be handy.

The app also lets you add filters to the video you’re broadcasting, there are over ten of them. Your friends’ likes and comments pop up on your phone, in real-time.

You can broadcast your video either through Wi-Fi or even 3G, and you don’t need any Ustream account to do so.

So, if you use an iPhone, head on to the launch page where you can signup to get notified when the app is launched.

Link: Broadcast For Friends

Adobe to discontinue downloads of Flash Player for Android from Playstore

As Adobe has confirmed last year, Flash is being discontinued on mobile platforms, and from tomorrow, you can no longer download the app from Playstore.

Steve Jobs has made his views public on Flash, long ago and Android has been the only big mobile platform for Adobe, since then.

Flash is not all that bad, but Adobe has failed at making it more secure and stable, especially on low powered devices. HTML5 on the other hand, is very light, stable and is based on open standards.

flash-player

Even Adobe has been pushing HTML5 a lot lately, with tools like TypeKit, Dreamweaver etc., which is a good thing.

Apparently, if Adobe doesn’t do something with Flash on desktops, we’ll definitely see a day even that getting replaced with HTML5. But, that’s not going to happen so fast, with lot of content on the web being flash-based (videos, ads, etc.).

It’s already a big task for Google to update Chrome every week or so just to fix Flash security issues – because Flash is bundled with Chrome.

If you already have Flash installed on your Android, you will still get regular (and annoying) updates, and if you can’t live without Flash, you can get the .apk easily from XDA or similar Android forums.

Will the Stylus Define Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 Tablet?

Samsung has launched a new tablet, called Galaxy Note 10.1 (not to be confused with Galaxy Note 2 phone which will be launched later this month). The tablet is released in Germany and UAE at the moment and expected to be made available in other countries soon.

The tablet market has a few newsmakers this year, which include Google’s Nexus 7 and Apple’s New iPad (or iPad 3). With Galaxy Note 10.1, Samsung is probably pitting it against Apple’s New iPad.

Will Stylus work with Galaxy Note 10.1?

Before the iPad, most people were obsessed about using the Stylus. The idea was to sell tablets to executives to take down notes. Fact was the stylus has never really been a great product to take down notes in digital formats.

This image of the Galaxy Note 10.1 seems to suggest the device can read what your write down (which would be great for students). It also would be a much easier way to write down short notes or reminders.

But look closely and the letters on the tablet are not in the natural cursive style of writing. I have not used the Note 10.1 so will not be able to comment on its ability to leverage the stylus.

Unless a tablet with a stylus which really manages to replicate the feel of writing with a pen, it would still not be much of a game changer. Even smartphones with touch screens replicate with small vibrations, the feeling of pressing a button on the screen.

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 Tablet Details

Display and Dimensions: 10.1 inch WXGA (1280X800) LCD screen. The tablet weights approximately 600g.

Processor: The tablet will run on 1.4 GHz Exynos Quad-Core Processor.

Operating System: Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Memory: The tablet has three versions 16/32/64 GB user memory with 2GB RAM.

You can look up the complete specs list of Galaxy Note 10.1 here.

Video on Galaxy Note 10.1 Features

What are your views on Galaxy Note 10.1 tablets? Do drop in your comments.

1Tap Quick Bar- Customize Your Android’s Notification Bar

Notifications bar is one of the best features Android has, which does exist in iOS, but is not so feature filled. For example, whenever you get a notification in Android, a small icon pops up on the status bar and you can swipe to dismiss notifications. 1Tap Quick Bar is an app that allows you to customize the notification bar.

1Tap Quick bar

I keep my home screen as minimal as possible, with only two icons and no clock widgets. But this can prove to be a hassle, as I will need to go to app drawer every time for launching any app.

This can be solved with 1Tap Quick bar, which lets you add a quick bar to the existing notification bar and you can add app shortcuts/settings/system tasks to the quick bar (it’ll be shown as a ‘Ongoing’ task in the notification bar).

There are many system settings like Wi-Fi, GPS, Auto rotate etc., which can be added to your quick bar with ease. The app is pretty slick with the Holo theme.

As you can see in the image, I’ve added a camera icon to the quick bar which is a much needed feature in Android (i.e. quick access to camera) – so the next time I want to take a snap, I can just pull the notification bar and access the camera app.

The free version of the app lets you add only one quick bar, but that’s enough for me. You got to pay for adding more bars, but that’ll make your notification bar messy.

Link: 1Tap Quick bar

Related: 5 Gorgeous Andoird Apps You Cannot Miss

Samsung Galaxy Note 2 Launch on 29th August [Expected Specs]

Samsung might be locked into a long protracted courtroom battle with Apple, but it is not showing any signs of slowing down. According to Reuters, Samsung will be launching Galaxy Note 2 at a event in Berlin on August 29.

Samsung’s recent Galaxy SIII phone has been a big success and as a phone, has received good reviews. So expectations from Galaxy Note 2 will be high.

Samsung Galaxy Note 2 Expected Specs

Expected Specs for Galaxy Note 2

Here is a list of some expected specs for Galaxy Note 2.

DISPLAY: 5.5 Inches Screen, Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen with support for multi-touch.

CAMERA: The device is expected to have two cameras. The primary camera should be 13MP with autofocus and LED Flash.

OPERTATING SYSTEM: Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean)

HARDWARE: The unique part of this phone is its support for stylus. It should have a Quadcore processor.

MEMORY: The phone is expected to come in two versions of internal memory which are 16/32 GB. It should also have 1.5 GB RAM.

I have always felt that Galaxy Note is the sort of device which could not decide on weather it wanted to be a tablet or a phone. But then the people buying these phones are also undecided about wanting a fancy smartphone or a tablet. Galaxy Note 2 will find it difficult to escape comparisons with iPhone 5, which is expected to be launched in September.

What are your expectations from Samsung Galaxy Note2? Do drop in your comments.

Related: Why you should and should not buy Galaxy Note?

Hike wants to be the Indian WhatsApp

WhatsApp is very popular among Indians and that’s one of the reason why people who buy blackberries just for BBM, are decreasing. The fact that WhatsApp is cross platform, has hugely contributed to its success. It’s everywhere, even on S40 devices.

But wait, here comes Hike, a new messaging app specially targeting Indians.

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So, how is Hike different from WhatsApp? In WhatsApp, you can send messages to your friend only if he has the app installed, but with Hike, you can send messages to even non-Hike users. That sounds nice, but messages to non-Hike users can be sent only by spending your Hike credits, and you get 100 Hike credits refilled every month (for free).

You can get more credits by referring your friends to the app, and also the app can’t send messages to phones with DND on. As you’ve guessed, Hike-to-Hike messaging is unlimited and international, just like WhatsApp.The app sports a sleek design and the way it links your Hike account to your phone number, instead of tumbling with usernames/pins is nice.

It uses your address book itself as a way to add buddies and they also aim to be spam-free, providing an easier way to block spammers.

The app is now Android-only, but they plan to make it available on all the major platforms – that includes iOS, WP, S60 and Blackberry.

Link: Hike