Friday, October 17, 2014

Friday is for AT&T Customers

It’s Friday!!!

This app choice today is inspired both by AT&T and by the fact that it’s payday. Payday usually means we've got to take a look at our bills, and make some payments. Sometimes our smaller bills, like a cell phone bill, can be harder to remember. Why is that? I was going to say “cam be harder to remember because..” and then I realized I don’t know why- it just is!

Anyway. The app I am featuring today is the MyAT&T app. It’s an all inclusive payment, FAQ, customer service type app.

With it you can see your data use; This is huge! Especially with shared plans, if you want to see who the culprit is that is constantly going over the data, you can do that! If you want to check when payment is due and whether it not it was submitted, you can do that! Also, what’s great is there’s a tab for store locations & appointments. This is SO useful if you find yourself at work, suddenly your phone stops working and you want to go to the closest location nearest you but you have to be back by the time your lunch break is over, you can do that! Just call the store, let them know you’re coming in; or simply make an appointment for what is available through the app and you know you won’t be waiting long!

Check out this app and all it’s fun features, I promise it will come in handy! Better yet, stop by one of our Car-Tel Stores and allow us to install and demo the whole thing for you!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Scary Surprise!

Happy Hump Day Err’body!

Welcome back to our App series where I will give you my favorite app pick of the week. It’s a beautiful Wednesday here in Haddon Heights, NJ and we are half way through the week! Are you enjoying this weather as much as I am? This past weekend I kicked off my Halloween activities by going to a local farm that does an awesome scary hayride, corn maze, haunted houses production. They really stepped up their game this year so I was impressed. I am a little bit of a chicken when it comes to scary things but I still enjoy the adrenaline-pumping scary adventures of haunted houses.

So, to that end, my app pick this week is a scary one! Haunting Melissa is an app that is more like a movie. This is done in a miniseries with a new one being released sometime soon- the description says this fall so it could be any day now!

The reviews on this app are outstanding; my experience with the app has proven it is well done and so it’s not surprise that it was created by the producer of The Ring! I encourage you to download this app, turn the lights off, and get fully immersed in the scary story of the Haunting of Melissa!

Here is the link to the itunes download, unfortunately this is an apple only app but, it works on mobile and tablet devices.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Football Fans Fan Favorite

Ok everybody! We’re kicking off this week AND our first app pick of the week with an ode to Monday Night Football. It’s that special time of year where it’s acceptable to yell at your electronic devices while wearing another person’s name on your shirt. Unfortunately, there are too many games on at the same time to watch them all and so I’ve come up with a solution for you.

My app pick this week is for ESPN ScoreCenter. (iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows).

While you all might have thought this was an obvious choice for managing your NFL intake, I would like to argue that this app is worth noting simply because it is the best. Most sports fans have it; most sports fans that just got a Smartphone for the first time need to download it! This app has live updates, video highlights, breaking news and personalized alerts. Plus this is a FREE app and accessible on ALL platforms.

You should download it now and tell me what you think! Do you have another favorite NFL app? I’ll be looking for responses and check in next week!


Thursday, September 25, 2014

App-Happy People!

Cause I’m H-App-Y!
I know, slightly corny but, it makes a good point. Car-telians are application-obsessed and we want you to be too! With the new look of our blog and a link to our Facebook page, we want you to get the FULL Car-tel Communications experience. We are re-introducing is ourselves with this post by telling you a little about our new project….

Once a week I will post my app pick of the week and tell you everything you need to know. I’ll tell you what the app is all about, which operating system it works on, why I love it so much and if there is a fee involved. And once a month I will post a video tutorial on my favorite app of the month!

Leave your favorite app in the comments section and I’ll be sure to check it out!

-       Lindsey 

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Festival Fun!

Festival Applications for the Masses!!
This summer is all about music festivals and the only way to easily make through a 4-day concert binge is to use applications on your smartphone that help keep you prepared and informed. In the spirit of going to Firefly Music Festival this weekend, I would like to share with you all the applications that I will be using to make it through t weekend.

Which one are you all going to? Are you more into a small gathering like Camp Jam? Or EDM music so maybe you hit up Wakarusa? Or are you a festival pro hitting up Bonaroo this year? The music festival scene has really blown up in the last few years which is great for people who love music and who are learning to spread their musical wings. If you like concerts, good food and drinks, an experience you’ll never forget then I highly encourage you to check out a festival near you…. And that’s pretty much everyone, right?

So here are the applications I will be using to help with everything from taking pictures/videos, finding my friends when we’ve inevitably split up, and of course, saving battery.

First, download the application associated with the music festival you are attending. For example, Firefly music festival created an application that is interactive enough to want to use it but not so overwhelming that you refuse to open it. On this app, and I’m sure likewise for the other festivals, you will see the lineup and schedule, the map of the grounds and names of the stages. Icons identifying bathrooms, food/water stations and the extra that they offer such as a beer garden or merchandise table. These are critical since they allow for live updates and you don’t want to be the person waiting for a show to start after not having got the message that band relocated to another stage!

Next, the Find My Friends application. This is something that all of your friends can join, even non-smartphone users, whoever they are. Essentially, you all join a group and this application allows you to see the exact distance between you. So when you wonder off to the merchandise table and forget where your friends are posted up at, this application will tell you how to get back.

Victorinox Festival Ready is the swiss army knife of festival applications, literally. Made by Swiss Army knife, this app spotlights the following great features:  3D Navigation, sound flare, ticker messaging, torch, live weather, packing checklist, camping tips, and festival protect range. This app is on point.

Then we have a less intense application for those photo inclined individuals. I always imagine I’ll take a lot of pictures when I’m out at an event like this however, I get home and realize yet again I’ve barely taken any pictures and half of them are blurry. Well, with Camera+ I will no longer have this problem. This application has a stability feature to prevent blurry photos as well as the burst feature to take several pictures in one shot so you avoid missing the best one. There are also built-in filters so need to take a square photo just to filter through Instagram.

Lastly, we have Easy Battery Saver. Without this application, how will I be able to use all of the other super cool applications I’ve already downloaded? Sometimes I’m skeptical of these applications because I don’t want to put in the time to decide what not to use however, with this app things are automatically adjusted to preserve battery life. I’m optimistic, at least, that this will help m have battery left for when the headliners come on at 10pm.

So there you have it, folks. Apps to boost your festival experience. What do you think? I hope you all take what you’ve learned here today and down load some of these great applications to use on your next music festival adventure!

To all my fellow Fireflyer’s.. see you soon!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Preparing for the Best Vacation Yet!

Hello, Spring!
I know it’s been Spring, officially, for a while now but, it hasn’t exactly felt like it. Between the largely varying temperatures and the down pour of rain we’ve been getting this week, I think it’s time to plan a vacation. What do you think? Summer is right around the corner and that means the kids are off from school, we’re all feeling eager to soak up the sun and I think a little getaway is just what we need.
Maybe you’re thinking a weekend trip or beginning to plan a month long excursion across Europe but either way you are going to need some help with this often tricky task. HAVE NO FEAR, CAR-TEL IS HERE! We’re going to provide some really helpful and interesting applications for travelers that can guide them to making the best decisions from start to finish in planning a trip.
One application that will work for everyone, no matter the type of trip they’re taking, is TouristEye. TouristEye gives you the option to choose cities you want to visit and build a customized daily itinerary of the places you want to see. Not only that, you also get to find out about transportation bookings, lodgings as well as travel events.

For those of you who are planning a road trip, there are some really great applications that will boost your experience and ensure you don’t miss anything along the way.
Triposo offers you the best travel guide for your phone, all you need to do is just download the country guide and it will work offline. The guide includes detailed city maps of top cities which will be great for those long stretches of highways where internet connection is sparse.
MTrip uses augmented reality to display tourist attractions in your area, and it guides you to each tourist attraction with directions. mTrip also allows you to share your trip with friends over Facebook or email, with personalized e-postcards.
Waze lets join forces with other drivers nearby to outsmart traffic jams, save time and money off gas prices using Waze, a community-based traffic & navigation app.
NextExitHistory is an application that lists all of the historical landmarks in your area. By using the GPS in your phone the app will show you what attraction is near you and how to get there!
Anyone planning on flying this year has probably heard a bunch of confusing information on when to fly, the best time to purchase your flight tickets and sometimes you don’t want to be bothered with tips and tricks because you’re making a last minute booking. So, to make life a little easier, take a look at these flight booking applications.
Travelocity with detailed information on flight and other forms of transportation, Travelocity helps you look for the best option and time to travel, as well as hotels and good deals near your current location. All these can be done with a simple search, with quick booking facility.
GateGuru it provides you with real-time flight statuses, airport wait times, even structured list of airport food, as well as shops based on over 30,000 reviews and tips from fellow travelers.
Skyscanner lets you compare over 1000 budget and scheduled airlines in seconds, and buy air tickets directly from the airlines or travel agents for the best deals.
Priceline is the application pick for last minute travelers. Remember those catchy commercials where they shout “Priceline Negotiator!” with William Shatner? Well for someone looking to book last minute this bidding tool is a great option. Place an offer for a flight or hotel and if accepted you’ll be on your way with a price you are comfortable paying. Because its last minute, any open seat bids are usually accepted for the airline can at least make some money.
For the international traveler, there are many obstacles to overcome to ensure you have as little mishaps as possible. Everything from language, currency, and each country’s travel regulations, there is a lot to consider before heading abroad. A few of the applications we have chosen to feature are going to help with a few of often difficult tasks to master.
Google Translate can translate typed or handwritten words just as easily as it can spoken words. Its hosts a dictionary for easy word or phrase look-up and even allows you to save those translations for offline access.
Word Lens is a nifty app that will superimpose your language of choice over images written in another language. Using your camera, Word Lens will show a German street sign in English!
Currency- Simple converter is a clean and simple interface that will handle over 160 types of currency conversions. You will have offline access and can even check back six months to get a history of the average currency ratio.
My TSA provides airline passengers with 24/7 access to the most frequently requested airport security information on any mobile device.  Using this app can save passengers time and money by sharing helpful tips to prepare for security before getting to the airport, including knowing what items can and can’t go through security in checked or carry-on baggage.
Well, there you have it, folks. These are some of the applications that are going to help you make the most of the vacations you have planned this summer. There are a million and one applications out there and there is something for everyone. Don’t be afraid to download a free application and try it out even if you’re not sure if it will fit your needs- they’re designed to help you make the most of your smartphone so get exploring!

Happy Travels!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

New Phone Face Off!


Today we're going to do a cell phone face-off between the HTC One (M8) and the Samsung Galaxy S5. These are heavy hitters in the Andriod world with both exceeding expectations in their own ways. It's really going to be interesting to see how the launch turns out for both of these phones as they will be available to the public on the exact same day, April 11th. I must say, as an iPhone user, I was highly impressed upon being given a training on both of these phones and it definitely tempts me to switch to droid when I'm ready for an upgrade but, we'll see if I can muster the guts to sever ties with Apple when the time comes. 

Here is a list of some major pros and cons for both and I will include some links at the end to fully comprehensive reviews that you might also find really useful in helping you decide which is the one for you!
HTC ONE (M8)                                                                                      SAMSUNG GALAXY S5
Larger screen than M7
Fingerprint security system
Extreme Power Save Mode
20% improved battery life
Fitbit compatible
Water resistant
Improved camera software
Kids mode

Less impressive design than M7
SHealth still not 100% accurate
Camera produces soft and muddied photos
Rear facing speaker not ideal for music playback
No multitasking window option
Plastic case

This by no means is comprehensive so, if you are looking for an extensive comparison click here for a fantastic article I found on Gotta Be Mobile. Also, I really like this video review of the Samsung Galaxy S5 and this video for HTC One (M8) if you’re more of a visual learner.
In order to decide which phone is for you, you have to decide what is more important to you in a phone. Camera or audio? Do you have a Fitbit device you want to get more use out of? Or maybe, you have kids that sometimes play on your phone so Kids Mode is great for you. It’s all about individual preference but, ultimately, both of these phones are fantastic and would be great to have.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Spring is near..Time to be productive!

Hey guys!
It’s almost halfway through March already, can you believe it? I hardly can. As spring approaches it reminds us all to come out of the winter hibernation and get productive! This month we are all about applications and accessories that allow us to be more productive in our daily life. Productivity means different things for everyone, right? So with that said, this month we want to address how to be more productive in a small business, as a college student and young professional, and with accessories that help everyone increase the functionality of their wireless devices.
The first step to being productive with your smartphone is what?... Having it be charged! We can’t use our phones in the ways we want to if we don’t have a fully charged battery. Recently, you might have heard of some horror stories about people getting injured or houses catching on fire due to electrical fires stemming from the use of a cell phone charger. The charges responsible for these accidents are not Apple approved and therefore are not 100% compatible with your phone. Why? Because Apple runs tests on chargers to promote optimal charge in a short amount of time. For example, an apple charger should charge you phone which is at 0% battery to 100% battery in approximately 45 minutes. Non-Apple-approved chargers will have less strength causing you to need to leave your phone plugged in for long periods. This length of time could lead to overheating of the wires and in effect, melt your phone. We did a little experiment with a cheap charger bought of Amazon to see how it would hold up to charging an iPhone. Check out the picture below and you’ll notice it did in fact melt the wires and could have potentially caused a fire. Pretty bad, huh?

So the solution to this is not necessarily that you have to use an Apple charge but, that you go to a reputable source, like Car-tel Communications, and purchase a charger that has been tested for use on an iPhone. If you have another smartphone it is just as important to get a charger that is universal and approved for your type of phone. This might sound dramatic but if for no other reason to have a proper charger, your phone will charge more efficiently if you have the right accessories.
Next up are our application picks to promote productivity! As I mentioned we have selected a few that would help people who are in different places in their career and these apps will boost their networking and business efforts.
When you’re starting your job search you should absolutely create a LinkedIn account. Admittedly, I first did not understand the point of LinkedIn, the scope of its features and so on. However, I now use this application and social media on a daily basis. You will have your resume in a public sphere so, automatically, more visibility. You will be able to find people who you already know and use their list of contacts to find someone who you might a build a mutually beneficial business relationship with. The application is intuitive with a clean design and is great to check periodically instead of your Facebook page.
Parking Meter Pro is a fantastic application for someone going on business lunches, interviews, giving p presentation and more. It actually helps you plan ahead for where to find parking, remember where you parked and alert you before you meter runs out so you know to get back to your car before a traffic cop spots you.
Lastly, I really like the app ScanBizCards Business Card Reader. It’s one of the only OCR applications that accurately store the information from the business cards you scan into your phone. A unique feature of this app is that it allows you to send your business card to someone else so you’re never without your cards when you make an unexpected business connection!
I hope you will find these things as useful as I have! Now, go on and get moving people, Spring is around the corner!

Monday, February 10, 2014

February is for Lovers!

Happy Valentines Day, Car-tel Lovers!

This month is all about love and romance, right? Well, maybe for some that means love for their significant other but, for us it's a love for all things cellular! It's not too late to come up with a really personal and sweet valentine for your secretly admired and here is how you can do it. 

The Red Stamp application is your ticket for the LoVe TrAiN come February 14th. This app allows you totally customize your valentine with design, print, colors, pictures and more. Of course it's available to send via text or email but for you old school Casanova's out there get this- it even allows you to have it signed, sealed and delivered in the mail to your sweety for a nominal price!

Next up on this love fest, is an application that our staff has picked. Flipagram is a digital flipbook that you compile pictures to make a video and set to music that you like. This is a great gesture for Valentines day for everyone. Whether its your first Valentines day together or your tenth, Flipagram is a sweet and modern way to look back on all your memories.

Lastly, we want to tell you all about an amazing new phone from LG, called the G Flex. This phone is super cool and a great gift for your tech-lovin' valentine. First of all, it's called the Flex because the phone is actually (kind of) flexible. It has a curved shape to fit the shape of your face and if you want to straighten it out, you just lay it face down and apply pressure to the back of the phone. This actually takes the curve out of the phone! Some other great features are the dual screen option; with this you can watch a video on Youtube and text your friend at the same time. That was actually enough to sell me on this phone but, that's not all this phone does! It's got a polymer backing which can self-heal minor scratches and dings. Because it's motivated by heat, simply apply light or body heat to the scratched surface and the polymer will expand enough to heal the scratch. I mean if thats not cool, I don't know what it!

Also- everyone NEEDS to come in to your local Car-tel Store to find out how we can save you money on your existing monthly plan. We have some seriously loveable new options for smartphone users and all it takes is for you to come in and ask. See you soon!

Until next time, folks!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Sports Savvy


This week on the blog we are gonna hook you up with apps that keep you Sports Savvy. Its a big week in sports with the Superbowl on Sunday February 2nd and the Olympics starting Friday, February 7th so we want you to be in the loop with all things sports. Now, if your team didn't make the Superbowl or you're forced to watch the game but you're really not into it don't worry because there is an app for everyone these days, and we have the best ones below! 

For the Olympics lovers, this week we are featuring apps that keep you in the know on when certain events will be televised, who will be competing, and of course, the results. Unfortunately for our athletes, there is a lot of talk about security concerns during the Olympics so, we've provided an app that will you keep you informed on the happenings in Sochi as well. 

For the Superbowl: 

Superbowl XLVIII- NFL Official Program- The National Football League presents the Official Super Bowl XLVIII Interactive Game Program. The app has everything you need to know about the AFC Champion Denver Broncos and NFC Champion Seattle Seahawks plus video highlight recaps for every week of the 2013 season!

NFL On Location Superbowl- This app is designed for guests attending the Superbowl. Stay up to date with event details for NFL On Location hospitality venues on Super Bowl Sunday, receive push notifications for any changes specific to NFL On Location Super Bowl guests, and acess interactive maps and event programming information.

Super Ads: Superbowl Commercials- The Super Ads iPhone app features over 200 Super Bowl commercials, including NEW 2012 ads, commercials from 2006-2011, and all-time popular ads spanning the last four decades. The app enables users to view the best Super Bowl commercials from an iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad device. Browse fan favorite Super Bowl commercial videos by year or look up ads by the company or brand name. Users can also share their favorite ads via Email, Facebook, and Twitter.

Feeling sporty yet? Here are the best apps for following the Olympics!

Sochi 2014 Guide- Mobile Guide to the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi will make your Games unforgettable and full of bright impressions. You'll be able to stay up to date, to know the accurate schedule of competitions and other events, to follow the Olympic and Paralympic Torch Relay, to purchase tickets, to plan a trip, to navigate in Sochi and at sports venues with the interactive map, to share experiences with friends and much more. Sochi 2014 Guide is your encyclopedia of the Games!

Sochi 2014 WOW- The app that is named WOW for Wireless Olympic Works and offers one of the easiest ways to keep track of what’s happening at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games. Furthermore, with the official Olympic app, you can design and personalize the info stream to match your interests and passions. This app is for android users.

NBC Sports Live- The app will live stream an abundance of live sporting events that air on NBC, NBC Sports Network and the Golf Channel, including NHL Regular-Season and Stanley Cup Playoff games, PGA TOUR, U.S. Open (golf), Notre Dame Football, French Open (tennis), Premier League (soccer), Major League Soccer, Formula One, IndyCar, Triple Crown horse racing and the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.

Sochi 2014 Winter Games Schedule- Add schedules including live results to your iPhone calendar so you’re always up to date. Add all competing athletes of your country or schedules per sport. In short, this is the #1 app to keep you fully informed during the winter of 2014!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Resolution Helpers!

Happy New Year, everyone!

It's about halfway through January of 2014, how are we all doing on our New Years Resolutions? Some of us might be really diligent and doing exactly what we said we would, others of us might be struggling to stay on track. And, if you're like me, you might not have exactly started on your goals yet. But, lets not get down on ourselves! Today we are going to be reviewing some smartphone applications that will help get us started and stay on track so we can end up where we want to be. Whether your resolution was to quit smoking, lose weight, volunteer more, be more financially savvy or keep in touch with friends and family, there is an application for it! Sometimes we hear about an app and think 'But am I really going to use it?'. I think the answer is yes! If you think about how many times a day you go into your smart phone and check your Facebook newsfeed, you might be able to find some time to check your Calorie counter app or your money manager app. You have to commit to your goal and these applications are your tools to do that! Lets check it out....

My New Years Resolution is....

To Quit Smoking: LIVESTRONG MyQuit Coach.
Why we like it: This application is really customizable to your lifestyle. We all know some tricks and tips are not "one-size-fits-all" and this app gets that. Whether you want to stop cold turkey or just cut down on your nicotine intake, this app allows you to incorporate you particular lifestyle with the change you want to make.

To Lose Weight: MyFitness Pal
Why we like it: This is the fastest and easiest-to-use calorie counter for iPhone. With the largest food database, amazingly quick food and exercise entry, this is hands down the best app out there. I've used this myself and I felt more in control and conscious of my daily food intake, and I really saw results. Guess I should take my own advice, and get back on it!

To Volunteer More: VolunteerMatch
Why we like it: VolunteerMatch is an organization that connects you to almost 100,00 nonprofit organizations that could use your help. With the app, you can search for opportunities in your area, share your plans with friends, save ideas for later, and even read reviews from other volunteers about their experiences.

To Be Financially Savvy: BUDGT
Why we like it: Financial tracking can be complicated and scary for most of us, so the reason we like this app is because its simple, clear, and it works. Create and manage your monthly budget with your income, monthly expenses and other categories you customize on your own. Colorful infographics help you make sense of your money.

To Spend More Time with Family: Cozi
Why we like it: We are all busy and sometimes writing our schedules on the calendar in the kitchen doesn't always help keep us connected. With Cozi, you invite your family members to access and edit a family calendar, shopping list, to do lists, journal of special moments and no one is left out. Its a great way to know what everyone is up to so you can find some time where you can all come together at the same time, same place.

Leave your comments below and tell us how you are doing after using one of these apps!