Saturday, 4 May 2013

Waze - Amazing GPS Smartphone Navigation

Basic Waze directions
Do you have a smartphone, with data, and fall under the following categories, while driving; get lost frequently, have a bad sense of direction, hate being stuck in traffic, want to be aware of pulled over cars and police officers? Well, you are in luck! After thoroughly testing this app, I bring to you a great review.

Waze is an application for your Android, Apple and, some, Blackberry devices. It is also 100 per cent free! This amazing app took me from my house to my girlfriend's place with no hassle. I was warned one time for a police officer, three times for pulled over vehicles and it re-routed me away from rush-hour traffic when possible. It made me feel confident about being on the Q.E.W. and where I was going.

It works because of you. No, there is no joke, here. It works because people communicate through the app. Through an easy combination of 2-3 buttons, you can report debris on the road, pulled over vehicles, police vehicles (stopped, moving or hidden) and traffic delays. Waze is amazing because it also gives you spoken directions in distance and the street name. On top of all this, when i was in Toronto, a fellow Wazer messaged me asking for directions. How useful is that for all you shy people who don’t want to physically ask someone for directions? I guess you can say that Waze brings social media to a new level.

This app is growing around the country (Canada) and I cannot wait for you to be involved. It is easy to sign up; in fact, I used my Facebook account because I didn't want to go through any hassle.

Live map with Wazers and notifications
I understand this is a short blog post; however, you need to experience it for yourself. It will only benefit you. Here are some facts that I found while using Waze:

  1. Only used three megabytes of data for a one hour drive.
  2. It is easy to use and straight forward.
  3. There is a button that you can select to guide you back to your parked car.
  4. People are friendly and everyone helps each other.
  5. Automatic recalculate based on traffic experiences of other Wazers.

Now, go to your app store, download Waze and get started.

Thursday, 25 April 2013

Home Media Streaming

Ever wonder how to put your downloaded videos onto a television without hooking up your computer? Or maybe you followed a previous blog post of mine, packed up your DVD collection and have everything stored onto an external hard drive or USB drive. This post is sparked by my Uncle Jim who is a great man...but not the best with computers. He asked me how to put Netflix on his television without hooking up his laptop and to answer his question; there are many ways of doing so. And here it is, the top two media streaming devices that you will find...the Apple TV and the Western Digital TV Live (WDTV).

With the Apple TV you are apple to put your mac screen directly on your television and do some amazing things. NHL actually has an app, followed by a subscription, in which you can watch almost any game on your TV through your internet connection and there is a Netflix app as well. The Apple TV has a library in which you can rent/stream movies from an online iTunes database. This makes it a lot easier and cheaper than renting a film. You can also stream media from your Mac and PC's onto your TV, except they have to be a specific format. Apple loves MP4 formatted movies and the Apple TV does not let your stream other video formats. However, it does take everything from your iTunes on your computer which is a great organization tool. This makes it a lot easier to play music when people are over, as you do not have to worry about re-creating playlists on the device. Overall, without getting into a full review, the Apple TV is an amazing product even though it has its limitations. The extra features are handy, but are really only if you have a mac. The WDTV is a very competitive product.

The WDTV is amazing as you can get some apps such as MLB TV and Netflix with it. It makes for a great media streamer from macs and pcs on the same wireless network. The best part is that you stream a lot easier because it is not file format specific like the Apple TV and this means less converting. Basically, download a video or rip one as an mkv format and put it into the folder that is connected to your WDTV. I like this concept because some formats such as flv and avi are popular and readily available, but they take some time to convert to MP4. It is not the best music player in the world, as it cannot connect to iTunes directly, however, it will read many formats that the Apple TV will not. It is bad when it comes to making playlists and playing them on the WDTV, but if you want to do this, copy a playlist onto an usb stick and put it into one of the two available USB ports, this is a very large advantage as Apple TV does not have this feature. This means you can also put external hard drives into it as well to make it easier to play your movies. The WDTV also makes your regular external hard drive and USB sticks networkable and you can use it like a network storage device. Pretty handy if you ask me; think of all the room you can save on your pc and macs this way.

The short end of it is that the WDTV is more powerful with more features like USB ports and file compatibility. However, Apple TV is stronger with Apps and the Mac features, if you are a mac owner. If you are looking for video and Netflix, grab the WDTV; as it will play more with less hassle. If you are looking for the all-around multimedia experience and playing a lot of audio through your home stereo, purchase the Apple TV; just be aware that it doesn’t have USB ports and your computer must be on at all times.

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Snap and Flash!

Nikon Coolpix S9300

Let's Pick a Camera!

Spring is almost here and, for some people around the world, it is already summer. This means many vacations, fun times at the beach, hiking, outdoor parties, bon fires, night events and the list goes on. You are going to want to take pictures and chances are you will use your phone. But there will be a day when you want to take nice quality pictures with a little bit of zoom because there is going to be that image out in the distance that is beyond your cellphones reach. So I guess you can say you will be in the market for a camera. In this post, I will talk about what kind of camera is suitable for different situations. Oh, and before we continue, your tablet is NOT an acceptable camera because it is just too big. If you are using your tablet as a camera, then I suggest you pay attention...please.

The Basics

Sony Cybershot DSCW610
Your phone will probably be fine for the quick snappy pictures, especially if it is over 5 megapixels (MP). Don’t forget, your camera probably doesn’t have optical zoom (the lens does the moving for the zoom).
Your phone will then use digital zoom (the computer zooming for you). This creates a pixelated or blurry effect when you go to print images or crop them later on. If the image you seek to take a picture of is off in the distance, you are going to need something better. If you want something with a little bit of zoom then I recommend 3-5x optical zoom. Never use digital because it will make your pictures blurry. There are many affordable and basic point and shoot cameras out there that will do this for you. And just an FYI some still use AA batteries. Recommendation: STAY AWAY! They are lousy at holding a charge for a long period of time (150ish pictures), they get bulky and you will have to replace them every 10-12 months. Lithium batteries tend to be expensive but they last about 300 pictures and I’d recommend replacing them whenever you feel like it. I have one that has been lasting 5 years and that’s not a joke.

Mini Zoom

The basics won’t cut it and you need some zoom. That is not a problem considering these cameras have come down in price and size over the past couple years. I have seen cameras with 16x optical zoom that are as small as the basic cameras for $200 CDN. This is great because you can still carry it around with ease and grab an object within 50 feet with ease. If I may say so, it sounds perfect for concerts. There are some that are not so thin because they use AA batteries. I repeat, STAY AWAY! This will not be repeated again, I promise. In all honesty, the main difference between here and the basic camera is that zoom cameras have more range as compared to basic cameras because size can be very comparable.


Canon SX500is
I call this set the biggies because they are bigger than the other two categories. These cameras generally start with 26x optical zoom and have many features to play with. You can change lighting, shutter speed and a lot more functions. This type of camera is recommended for the family. Why? Because they are a lot better for sports, distance and can do higher end video recordings. The issue is that they are bulky and do not fit in pockets. However, if you have a big purse you can probably fit them in there. These cameras do take better pictures then the smaller cameras. Once you learn how to master this, it is on to the professional grade cameras, Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR).

All-in-all, I would recommend you go with a zoom camera. They are small, compact and have a decent zoom for the price. They are more than the basic ones, but not that much. So here we go, the cameras I would recommend you purchase this summer season. I picked these three for the following reasons:
  • One from each category
  • Lithium batteries
  • They all use an SD memory card
  • The lens quality is what makes the picture and they have great lenses

My recommendations:

  1. The basics – Sony Cyber-shot 14.1 MP DSCW610
  2. The zoom – Nikon COOLPIX 16MP S9300
  3. Biggies – Canon PowerShot 16MP SX500IS

Before you go, I think you need to know why you don’t need a new camera. If you camera is a few years old and is over 8 MP, then you can already print up to 8x10 inch pictures. If you really desire the HD video recording then I understand. If your images are getting “dirty,” purchase a camera cleaning kit from a retail outlet because you probably haven’t cleaned it before. Now go on out and have fun. Don’t forget to price match if you can! 

Thursday, 28 March 2013

My Ink is too Expensive/I Think my Printer is Broken

HP Officejet 8500 Pro

You can never go a day in a sales associate position in the tech world without hearing “I need a new printer.” Why you ask, because they always break and they are not likely to last past two years. So whether it be now or later, you will be asking yourself what kind of printer you need that is cheap on ink or if you should just go laser.

There are two myths that are around today and that is that laser printers are more efficient than inkjet printers and it is cheaper to buy a new printer than a cartridge. I’d also like to point out that the cost of the cartridge does not reflect the printer you are going to by, or it shouldn’t at least. You need to find out the number of pages within that cartridge. I have seen them range anywhere between 150 sheets per cartridge (SPC) and 2500+SPC. This does hold true for inkjet cartridges. But before we get to these points, we need to determine how much you print to find something that is right for your lifestyle.

There are three classes of printers, in my opinion; 1) home use, 2) business/school and 3) big business. People in education print out a lot and yes, this means students as well. The home use person will print approximately 10 pages per week while the business/school use will print more like 50+ sheets per week. This may not sound like a lot, but it does in fact add up. If you are in the big business category, more than 250 sheets, then you may want to look into higher end printers or re-evaluate your printing because you can create PDF documents in place of paper. Establish where you are and then aim for a cartridge that will last you two months at minimum.

If you are looking for a solid recommendation, I would encourage Hewlett Packard’s (HP) line of Officejet printers, specifically the 8500 series. The black XL cartridge can last up to 2,300 sheets for about $43 CND. This is better than most, if not all, retail store laser printers. They also have the capability to do higher quality prints and have four cartridges. Running one black and three separate colours saves you money down the line. When one empties, you just replace that one. Just a little word of advice; never EVER get a tri-colour cartridge, they just aren’t worth it.

When looking for a printer, do not forget to look for something with a scanner, wireless networking and one that is compatible with mobile devices. The HP Officejet 8500 series printers are all capable of doing this. They may start at about $220 , but they do go on sale as I have seen one go for $149. Before you think that is too much for a printer, you could pay $50 for a printer that does 500 SPC for $30; that simply doesn’t make sense. By the time you spend $120 on ink (about 2000 pages and black ink only), you have now spent $170 on the printer and cartridges also come half full with the original purchase. Going with an HP Officejet 8500 series, you would have spent $190 and have 300 more pages to go. Once you purchase the next cartridge, you will have already saved $80.

I hope you learned a bit about printers with this post. Keep in mind that the price of the printer reflects the cartridge. See below for more tips about printer maintenance and some features you should all have.

The Printer List:
  • Keep your printer turned on, it will help with the life of the cartridge and the printer.
  • Purchase a printer with four or more cartridges.
  • Purchase a printer with wireless and/or wired networking
  • Get something that is compatible with your smartphone and tablets
  • Don’t be cheap, get a good one or you will spend more money than you think.

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Oh, Hey Big Purple Elephant

Ok, I know what you have been thinking throughout all these previous posts, when will the issue be tackled, Mac vs. PC. It is simple, what do you use the computer for?

As a consumer, you are probably frustrated, and as a sales associate, I have to ask the question. Mac computers are excellent for video editing, graphic design and, in the past, battery life. The MacBook line has amazing specifications and is sometimes seen as overpriced. Remember that most have great quality parts. I am not saying it is going to last you forever. A computer is a computer and it is mass-produced. In addition, they use the same processors as some PCs do and other technology is now interchangeable. I must say though, if you want a beautiful and breathless quality screen for photo editing and new HD video editing, go with the MacBook pro with Retina Display. It is expensive but worth it to an extent. I should clarify, by photo editing I mean using Adobe Photoshop for more than just the basics and use it literally every day. I have outlined the basics to a Mac, now here is the PC side of things.

PCs are strong computers especially when it comes down to business side of things. They make amazing word processing computers and typically come with more storage than Macs for the price. PCs also have more software available to them when it comes to legitimately free software (freeware). Most of my blogs are based on free software because people need to know it is out there. Why pay for something you will never use?  There are many math-orientated programs designed for PC as well like SPSS, which formulates data from surveys for you. Many programs are also available on PCs such as the Adobe Suite, QuickBooks and Simply Accounting. Business thrives on PCs because of the abundance of available software. Now the next question I usually get is about running PC on a Mac.

This is possible, and there are ways to get Mac on a PC. That is not entirely legal so I won’t be telling you where to get the information for a Hackintosh. Oops, spilt the beans on a common name for a PC with Mac OSX on it. So there are two ways to put Windows on a PC and it is either virtual/parallel or onto the hard drive as an OS directly.

Virtual will be a pain. It is like opening safari but inside the window is a full operating system. Typically this is done to use very minor programs, like all the freeware software I talk about and some business applications. If you install it directly to the hard drive, it is the exact same as running a PC. This is possible because Macs now use hardware like PCs.

Lastly, hardware quality and battery life are now very comparable. This has become a myth over time because PCs have evolved and have introduced Ultrabooks. An Ultrabook is a laptop made with power, portability and battery life in mind. Most of them are similar to Macs in this case. The hardware in a Mac and a PC is very similar. Many PCs and all Macs use Intel processors, which I recommend to everyone because they are more reliable than AMD chips. These processor/chips are the brain of the computer. Other parts are easily swappable between Mac and PC laptops as well. Both systems are also amazing for word processing, spreadsheets and presentations.

Therefore, when looking for a computer, pay attention to what you want to use it for and make the right decision. If it is graphic design, go buy a Mac, if it is for virtually anything else, go buy a PC. If you want to talk about viruses, refer to a previous post of mine, and remember that it is not about viruses anymore, it is about internet security where Macs are equally prone to such threats.

Side note: I honestly don't have a preference, I purchase what I need and I do not do any graphic design or video editing. Just some simple Photoshop, internet surfing and word processing.

Monday, 18 March 2013

The Best Video/Audio Download Tool

Ever wonder how to rip a video from YouTube or just rip the audio. You may use the popular YouTube downloader, but it is very limited. Do you have software to burn a video to a disc or convert your videos directly to iPod/Xbox or any devices format? Well here you go! This is a review of the free software called Freemake Video Converter.

One program and it does many different things. Freemake is the best in my mind. I have used YouTube downloader, but it does not do nearly as much. I use Freemake to convert video to different formats such as avi, mkv or mp4 as well as converting to make it playable over my network and onto my Xbox 360. It is simple to use. It is so simple that you do not need a tutorial on it. I kid you not; it is that simple. If you want to burn to a disc or convert a file, click and drag it into the program and then select what file you want to convert it to. If you are downloading from YouTube, copy the URL and click the “Paste URL” button in the program. If you want to make a video into a music file, do the same thing but convert it to MP3.  

Do not forget to browse for the folder that you want to convert and save it. This box will pop up. If you want it to go straight to iTunes, simply click the “export to ITunes” box and then convert.

Unfortunately, this software is only available for PC for now. Sorry mac lovers, your time will come. You can download it from this website here. Be sure to download the Freemake Video Converter, as it will do almost everything that Freemake offers without the need of everything else.

Now that I taught you how to get music into iTunes from YouTube, you can now enjoy my previous post on creating iPhone ringtones a lot easier. Don't be afraid to use this for your BlackBerry's and Androids. Use Audacity to cut those files. Another tutorial to come in the near future perhaps?

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Make Free iPhone Ringtones

Hey everyone! Just a quick tutorial post that goes with the posting coming up. This is for all of you iPhone users stuck with the basic ringtones and ones you have to buy. Have fun making your own!

Friday, 8 March 2013


Ok, now that I got your attention I am going to say why your data on your computer is not safe. I don’t mean it is being hacked or someone has access to it. I am talking about backing up your information properly.

So I was checking out some blogs before I wrote this one, this doesn't happen often because I've been through many scenarios in my retail and personal days. I came across Scott Hanselman’s Blog and liked his rule of three…a little bit. First of all, I respect his post and you should take his advice as it is valid. Secondly I have my own rules I like to go by.

  1.  A back up is not stored only one device/computer.
  2. Rate how important it is and decide what the best method to back it up on is.
  3. If it is that important, back it up on MULTIPLE devices (two computers do not count).
  4.  Don’t cheap out! It is your information so keep it safe.

Forms of back up
  1. Cloud storageInformation that is stored on the internet on a server that has security built in. Some you have to pay for, others are free and some are both (depending on the size).
  2. External Hard drive (HDD)
    It has moving parts and is generally connected to your computer via USB. This is ideal for big items as they range from 500GB to 3TB, on average.
  3. USB Stick/Flash Drive
    A small device running that is not mechanically driven. They are small in size and memory. They can be considered more reliable than external HDDs but you don’t get your bang for your buck in terms of memory size.
  4. Disc Storage (DVD)
    There are different types of disc storage (CD, DVD and Blu ray). DVD is the most common and holds 4.7GB per disc. They can cost as little as 20 cents per disc and are not electronic. They are small in capacity size and hard to physically store sometimes.

What to back up to?

It really doesn't matter what you use to back up. Just realize that it is good to have different forms for your important information. Here is what I do:

Pictures, family movies, Microsoft office files (important files), and any other very important/irreplaceable information – DVD, External HDD, Cloud storage (
  • Just pictures – DVD, 64-128GB flash drive, cloud storage
  • Just movies – External HDD
  • Just office documents and small files – 8GB flash drive, DVD

Movies to me are not that important because they can always be re-downloaded or ripped from DVD and Blu rays (see other blog post for how to rip DVDs). But for the cost of my internet per month and a hard drive, one back up wouldn't hurt. All my important information is backed up three times because it is important.

I hope you find this blog post insightful and getting you to think about backing up your information. I have seen too many people rely on external storage as a primary drive and have it fail. Technology is not full proof, KEEP A BACKUP!

Oh, before you go, look at my friend Deanna's blog, she gives great insight on money management for students. Some of it relates to everyone as well. She gives great tips as I refer to her quite often.

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Router Purchasing Guide

Ever have a problem with your internet and think that maybe it is time for a new router? I am at my girlfriend's place for reading week and I can’t get onto the internet. My laptop is connected but the internet does not decide to work. I can restart the computer or the router and it will work again only for another device to do the same. This means you need a new router.

When looking to purchase a router you should ask yourself the following questions: how many devices do I have connected at the same time, do you play video games on the computer or game console and do I stream from the internet or Netflix. These questions are important because they depend how much you spend on the router. One thing when it comes to routers, you get what you pay for. You will not be for quality (how long the unit will last), you purchase features and what it can handle.

Below you will find a list of what to look for in a router and terms you will come across. Happy hunting.

Signs of a dying wireless router:
  • When you keep unplugging and plugging it back into the power source
  • Wireless devices keep disconnecting
  • Everything is getting slower
  • The range isn't what it used to be

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Undelete Your Mistakes

Have you ever deleted a document, picture, video, song or anything else on your computer or storage device and wished you could get it back? Ever tried Recuva?

Recuva is undelete software from Piriform. They provide a free version and two separate paid versions. I love free stuff so I experimented with the free version.

In order to test this, I put some files onto a USB stick a few days ago. I deleted the files, ejected the stick and got lazy and left it in my bag. So I decided to actually try the software again, that being the day this blog is published. I added more files, deleted them and ran Recuva. Make a note that I forgot about the first 20 files I put on their a few days ago, and some from months prior (no joke I’m serious about that too). After I ran the scan I was in shock. Most of my files have been recovered. I’m talking videos, pictures, music, word documents and Photoshop files. For the most part, they reappeared. I found that this was amazing and should let you know what you need to download, Recuva.

Recuva is simple to use, take my word for it. I may be a techy but I know what is easy to use for the average Joe. Why are you still here? Shouldn’t you be making sure you have Recuva by now? Download it here. And if you do not believe me, check out this blog on undelete software with other options.

Things to know:

  1. If you delete a file and want it back right away, be sure to not create new files onto the drive from which you have deleted stuff from. This lowers the recovery chance.
  2. If you want to try this, do it with duplicate files.
  3. This is no excuse to as why you do not have a backup hard drive for all your pictures.

Friday, 15 February 2013

The Truth on Internet Security Software

No matter what you are doing on the web you always need some type of internet security software. There are so many choices to choose from and people are upset with paying that yearly subscription for three computers. Technology is growing rapidly today and some people don’t have just computers; tablets, macs, and smartphones are used for all sorts online activities. Let’s be honest, in this topic, you get what you pay for.

Some things that are free are your best friends, antivirus/security software is not that cut and dry. There's the free stuff, where you don’t get internet security protection and then there are the paid ones where you get the option to have internet security for up to five devices. When looking at this you need to understand a few things: all free software protect you from viruses and the majority do not protect you from the major threats.

I urge all my friends (this includes you), to get Norton 360 or Norton 360 Multidevice. Multidevice allows you for up to five devices for up to one year. It is the best software I have ever used and do not regret it. It has made some major improvements since 2008 and is my choice and recommendations without a doubt. Best protection from security threats such as phising (false web pages), banking protection and spyware threats. If you must go with the free antivirus programs that do not protect you from the security threats, read up here on some reviews. But honestly, go with Norton 360. It tunes up your computer, has real-time antivirus and internet security protection and is the best I have ever used… EVER!

Saturday, 9 February 2013

Photoshop 101

Adobe Photoshop CS5 Logo
Adobe Photoshop is one of the most frustrating programs that people want to use. It is also the best photo editing software you can use, in my opinion. I have been using Photoshop since grade 10 in my Communications Technology class at St. Paul Secondary School in Niagara Falls. Here I was taught all I really know about the program. It was a tough start, but I got through it. This post is to make that tough start easier. This cheat sheet will explain what tools do and what you would use them for.

However, as I get more and more excited about writing my blog, I find new websites that help me do my job a lot easier. In my mini tablet blog, I mentioned a website called Make Use Of. This site is amazing because it also gives you a second opinion on reviews and many different cheat sheets for all kinds of software. What I am going to do is provide you with the same concept. Here we have the explanation to the cheat sheet. The PDF below will explain the tools shown in the cheat sheet. If you are more interested in the features of Photoshop CS6, click on this guide

Friday, 8 February 2013

Backgroundless Image

Documents can be a pain when it comes to pasting images. Think about having a signature on an electronic resume or a title for your blog. Websites do not always give you the best tools and sometimes you have to do things on your own. This is where software comes into play.

I use adobe Photoshop for these tasks, but I suggest beginners use adobe Photoshop Elements. Elements can run you about $129 CDN but it is about $670 cheaper than Photoshop. Both are Mac and PC compatibility (please check system requirements before purchasing the product to check if your computer is compatible). Before starting the tutorial, you should know the different file types. The one we will be focusing on is Portable Network Graphics (PNG or png).

This file type allows you to save an edited image with a transparent background. I find PNG files to have higher quality than JPEG but lower compatibility with some devices. The following steps are what I took to get my friend Erin’s blog title up and running without a background. Check out her blog here.

Thanks Linda for the guest blog post. If you, or anyone reading this, needs technology advice, tutorial or faces issues, please visit or email me at

Thursday, 31 January 2013


BlackBerry Z10 - Picture Credit goes to Colin Peters

The New BlackBerry Z10

As I said in my last post, I played with the BlackBerry Z10 the other day and I thought that it was amazing. Well, the truth be told, it is!

The BB’s specs are off the charts compared to their previous models. The processor they chose is even competitive to phones like the iPhone and HTCs. Just to confirm with some people, yes this is the same chip used in the Samsung Galaxy SIII.

There is one issue I have with this phone and that is the apps. It comes with amazing apps to start such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Docs to Go (trial). However, other apps will not be developed like the ones on iOS and Android operating systems. Think of this in the same light as Windows 8; the numbers of apps were low the first day it came out, but they continued to grow and still are to this day. This has to be the only downfall that I see as of right now.

To sum up this post, I wish I had played with the phone a bit longer. I was impressed with everything about it from the physical layout and design, all the way to how basic apps it comes with operate and layout. If you decide to get one soon then I suggest you learn one feature: put your thumb on the BlackBerry logo and push up to get back to the home screen. Go try one for yourself; it is an amazing smart phone. Congratulations BlackBerry, you did it when nobody else thought you could, including me.

Do not forget to catch the blog on twitter where you can be the first to find out about my latest blog posts: @eztechspot. And when you are finished with this post check out my friend Colin’s blog. It is called Invest for Rest and it is about investing and giving amazing insight for first time investors  Check it out at

The following chart is the specs layout for the BB Z10:
Thanks to BlackBerry for providing the specs on

War of the Biggers: Three Way Tablet Battle

I just talked about which smaller tablet to purchase. However, what if you want something bigger? There are many choices when it comes to tablets. This post is going to focus on three different tablets; the iPad fourth generation, Acer Iconia W510 and the Samsung Galaxy Note.

The specs will be listed below; for now, here is my 5-star chart on the tablets:

Cutting to the chase, the Acer Iconia is my favourite choice because it has a full-blown operating system and is a fair price for the better processor, 64 GB of storage and a killer rear-facing camera. Windows 8 is designed for touch screen devices and still has its own app store, many of the apps being free as well. The iPad is great but it is lacking a better processor, more ram and the fact that iOS has a lot of paid apps, but they are better quality. The Samsung is an amazing tablet because it already comes with a word processing app. However, Microsoft Office 2013 will also work on many mobile devices.

Sorry Apple, I love the iPad’s retina display, but your apps end up being higher priced with no office software. I may add the expandable memory option is also a big downfall.

Next blog post, as of now, will be a nice review of the Blackberry Z10. Here is a shot of the Blackberry van in Toronto where I saw and played with it for the first time. And don't forget to follow the twitter portion of my blog @eztechspot.

Blackberry Van on Bay St., Toronto, On.
Better View of Blackberry Van Display

Specifications chart

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Mini Tablet Stand-Off

You are out looking for an eReader but quickly discover that for an extra $100 dollars you can get yourself a tablet that uses both major eReader applications: Kobo and Kindle. The hard part is deciding what to get and what to focus on. Ideas that come to mind are portability, screen size, resolution, memory size, speed and apps.
I sell tablets on a regular basis and compare these two products consistently. The one thing they both lack is expandable memory; meaning you cannot add a micro SD card for extra storage space. Now that that is out of the way, I put together a 5-star rating system chart that will give you an idea on how I rated these tablets. If you want to be a bit more tech savvy, I inserted the chart at the bottom of the post.

These tablets have about a split score, depending on what you think of the screen size and how that would be in your eyes. The Nexus 7 is a more powerful unit with a lot clearer of a display, as well as vibrant in colour. Oh and we cannot forget price. The iPad mini is dominant in multimedia streaming, battery life and weight. I have done some research from a recent post on and they say that the iOS apps are better quality, but the Android OS has more free apps.
The result
The Nexus 7, in my opinion, is a clear winner. I view small tablets for portability, power and multimedia. If you are really about a rear-facing camera or if you have other Apple products, than you will look at the iPad mini as your winner simply for interconnectivity reasons. However, if you don’t use your calendar app, the interconnectivity will not make a big difference.
Research more by looking at the Make Use Of’s review. They have some other opinions. In addition, be sure to check out my friend Geoff Bassett’s blog about relaxing music. His blog is called Audio Ambrosia

Specifications Chart

Friday, 25 January 2013

From Disc to Digital

You have an iPod touch, tablet, laptop, multimedia streaming devices (i.e. Apple Tv or WesternDigital TV Live) and you still are puzzled how to get your Blu-rays and DVDs onto them. Have no fear a tutorial is here.

In today’s world, many DVDs are coming out with a digital copy, this you will see on the case content. What you don’t always see on the case is how long the digital copy is valid for. I just purchased the X-Men Trilogy a few days before the 2013 New Year and the digital copy expired September 22, 2010. Now you’re stuck. What do you do? Rip it of course.

Firstly, I encourage you to look at your laws in order to determine if this is legal in your country. Some allow you to do this for personal use only. Secondly, you are going to need some software and hardware. For DVDs, if your computer has been built in the last five years, you should be ok. Blu-ray Disc will need a Blu-ray reader. Be sure you use the "Presets" in Handbrake if you are unsure of what to use. One day I will get to using Handbrake.

Once I find software that is compatible with Mac I will do my best on inserting a guide for you.

There is one part where you will be waiting for a while. When this is happening, check out my friends blog. Her name is Courtney Charette and she is exploring the Niagara area. Her blog is called Rediscover Niagara.

What you will need to start this project:

A PC (sorry Mac users, the decryption software just isn't available unless you pay for it. I am also a fan of freeware software)

Thursday, 24 January 2013

A Guide to EZ Tech Spot

I have been building and diagnosing computers for the past 11 years. Most of my knowledge has come from working in a retail environment. I have worked for two computer businesses, one being a university tech shop and the other being a major retail chain. I do enjoy helping friends and family with any computer problems they may have. I have found that most customers have difficulty comprehending and looking for information on technology. My goal is to help you receive the knowledge and understanding of different technology so you will be informed.

This blog will be a resource guide to the retail world. Topics that will be covered will be a combination of how to guides, suggestions, and information. Products being covered will endless and welcome any suggestions. You can email any suggestions to me here. I will simply state pros and cons, what I recommend and why. Based on questions based in comments and emails, I am more than willing to add a sequel post. Here is a list of the topics I will touch upon: tablets (both big and small), cloud storage services, free software reviews, wireless routers, custom building computers and lots more.