Viber – Take the free way

viberToday, the free calls over the internet became more and more popular. And while there are plenty of programs that allows you to do so, it’s quite hard to choose. But of course, you go for the most featured and light program that you can find. That’s what I like the most about Viber.

First of all, it’s all cross platform. I know, it’s not the only one who has multiple platform support, but its features are making Viber a complete fast and free communication app. It’s fast, because it’s light, simple and efficient. While other programs offer you this and that function, Viber developers managed to get most of the features, well, the most useful ones, into one program. So, you have high quality voice calls, free text (even group text), photo messages and location-sharing with Viber users. Nothing of these requires registration. The application will detect automatically your contacts who are using Viber, and is working great on 3G connection or wifi without major differences. Anyway, be careful because the usage of 3G will use your data plan and can generate extra costs.

Viber-for-PC

As I mentioned before, it’s a cross platform software. So, except for linux, you can have Viber on almost any device using Windows, MacOS, iOS, Android, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, Nokia (Symbian) and Samsung Bada.

I was testing the Windows and Android versions. Well, I wanted to check the Video Call feature, which so far is a beta feature, between these platforms. On Windows I have the feature, marked as beta, but on Android is not. So, I can make a voice call between these platforms, but so far, the Video call feature doesn’t seem to be available on the mobile device. Location sharing is also a bit tricky. You only have a small purple arrow that will share your location with the person you are texting, if you activate the arrow. You can open the location in Maps, and let your GPS guide you to meet. Available on mobile device only.

If you want to install the windows version, you must first activate Viber on a mobile device, because Viber will use your telephone number as an identifier for the desktop version of the program. By using the desktop version of Viber you will get the advantage of getting all your viber contacts from your phone instantly on your desktop version.

The application is great for free calls. We all know how expensive the calls/messages with other countries are, so, it’s a good and efficient way to talk free with all your friends from all over the world.

Download Viber

 

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BitTorrent and Sync

bittorrentBitTorrent Inc. has released a new application that allows users to securely sync folders to multiple devices using the BitTorrent protocol. The free application has no storage limits and can serve both as a public backup system and a shared drive. BitTorrent Sync is especially efficient for groups who need to share many large files over the Internet.

The latest release form BitTorrent Inc. is an exciting and innovative application that provides users with the ability to synchronize their folders to a wide range of devices, simply by implementing the BitTorrent protocol. What are the benefits of this new application? Well, for one there are no limitations when it comes to storage – which gives users the multiple benefits of using Sync for shared drive purposes and as a public backup system. Essentially, this means that users with the desire and the need to share files across various devices have access to a practical, speedy and reliable form of distribution.

btsync.jpg

If this sounds a tad familiar though, that’s because it is. BitTorrent is using similar technology to that of certain cloud services like Dropbox, iCloud, and Skydrive. The difference, however, is pretty clear. This is simply that there isn’t any third-party that has access to the files that are being shared, the storage is effectively unlimited and transfer services are rapid. It’s about time that BitTorrent introduced a productive way to backup and synchronise files across various devices – as BitTorrent have never really enjoyed this kind of service until now.

Sync implements a peer-to-peer platform. This means that users of the program will rely on each other for the sharing of their files, as opposed to any centralized infrastructure. This will add to the already rapidly growing peer-to-peer market that has dominated the Internet. Statistically, peer-to-peer transfers take up over 40% of the data being transferred across the net. With the cost effectiveness of this platform, more and more content owners and distributors are taking advantage of it – meaning its market domination is only likely to grow.

Legal issues surrounding peer-to-peer transfer are complicated, as the files being transferred will often make reference to copyrighted content – this means that the implemented peer-to-peer platform is often said to be synonymous to piracy. BitTorrent has established a completely decentralized network with the intention of transferring files in an effective and practical way – which raises problems in relation to existing laws within the market. The law has raised issues in terms of the liability of the BitTorrent protocol. Regardless, the amount of users making use of peer-to-peer sharing networks continues to grow.

 

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Turn your laptop into a WiFi hotspot with mHotspot

Getting access to the internet is increasingly important in today’s always on, connected world. This is one of the big reasons why I like apps like mHotspot. It turns any Windows 7 /8 laptop into a Wi-Fi hotspot; and it’s free.

mHotspot converts your Windows 7/8 laptop into a virtual Wi-Fi router and creates a secure Wi-Fi hotspot without installation of additional networking components. With it, you can share your single internet connection with multiple devices. You can share your existing LAN, Ethernet, Data-Card, 3G/4G, or Wi-Fi connection with devices like laptops, smartphones, PDAs, tablets etc. No additional router or external hardware is required.

mHotspot

If you’re out and about and have a mobile broadband capable laptop, this application is a must have. It quickly and easily creates a mobile hotspot that you can share with all of your internet capable devices. This can be very important to those that need to give access to friends using other devices. The only issue that may be encountered with this is that it uses bandwidth from your existing mobile data plan.

While this can also be great for those times when you need to access the company network from your personal laptop while at work, it does require an existing internet connection in order for it to work. The interface is simple and easy to use, and its free price tag makes it a must have for nearly everyone.

Download mHotspot

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Watch, share and host videos and files online in streaming with Cacaoweb

Cacaoweb is a free open-source plugin enabling users to upload, download, share and watch host videos and files online, bypassing any time restrictions for unpaid viewing. It makes use of data streaming so viewing can commence before the download is completed.

Downloading the software is straightforward, and can be done either before or after the content has been searched for and identified. Cacaoweb has its own content search engine and selecting a file or files to play will check for the software and prompt to download the app if it is not already present. It can be used in conjunction with other software components, for example, catalogues of hosted movies, which then install cacaoweb.exe and play the selected video.

Cacaoweb is entirely free to use and seems to perform well, although videos can freeze for a short time. The website is arranged clearly and elegantly.

The software runs on Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X. It can be used to integrate large files, music or video to other websites; all the APIs and instructions are freely provided. You can control cacaoweb instances through HTTP calls. File uploading is to the cacaoweb P2P network. There are features around maintaining file metadata, for example, the title, year of release, season, episode, language and price information can all be maintained, however, once uploaded a file cannot be removed. There is a support forum, wiki and a GitHub for the control of its software revisions.

Download Cacaoweb for Windows | Download Cacaoweb for Mac

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Capture, burn, convert, copy and share digital media with Toast Titanium

Having a Mac usually means having a lot of multimedia on your PC. Having a lot of multimedia on your PC usually means you’re going to need a tool to help you capture and preserve it. That’s one of the reasons why I really like Toast Titanium. It’s one of the premier multimedia tools available for your Mac.

Toast is the fastest way to capture video from your AVCHD camcorder, with no lengthy imports. You can use just about any HD video source. With it, you can create stunning Blu-ray video or HD DVD discs for playback on compatible set top players as well as your PC.

Toast allows you to edit video clips. You can trim start and end points, remove unwanted segments in the middle of video clips before export, or even apply audio effects. You can capture any streaming Internet audio on your Mac, without interference from other apps or system sounds. Toast’s MusicID automatically adds artist and title tags to captured music for easy syncing to your iTunes library.

Capturing streaming web video is just as easy with Toast. You can save streaming video from your favorite web sites and then burn the content to DVD for viewing on your big-screen TV. Toast can even send it automatically to iTunes for syncing with your favorite iDevice.

You can digitize and restore your LP’s and tapes, without the pops, clicks and hisses. Toast’s audio filters and tools help you clean up your audio and then burn it to CD or DVD, or send to iTunes for syncing with your iDevice. Ripping audiobook CDs to iTunes, with chapters, pause/resume support and variable playback speeds is also easy with Toast. You can convert for enjoyment on iPad, iPhone, or your favorite on-the-go-device with just a few clicks.

Toast Titanium is THE audio and video editing and capture application for your PC or Mac. There are very few apps out there, in my opinion that are better at these tasks than Toast. It’s that good. The biggest problem, however with this app, is its price. At $79.99 as of this writing, it’s a bit on the pricey side unless you do a lot of audio-video editing on a regular basis or have a large project ahead of you, like converting your VHS-based home movies to DVD.

Download Toast Titanium for Mac

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Quickly and easily create industry compatible PDF’s with Nitro PDF Pro

Creating PDF’s is pretty common place now-a-days. There are a number of different products that you can download and install to quickly “print” to PDF. Having in one is important, as sharing information in a non-editable format is often important.  However, sometimes, you need to edit those PDF’s you get. It’s at times like those that I really like using Nitro PDF Professional. It’s on my short list of must have Windows apps.

Nitro Pro lets you quickly create, convert, combine, edit, sign, and share 100% industry-standard PDF files. It’s easy-to-use PDF tools make working with digital documents pain free. You can save time and effort with easy-to-use PDF creation tools that don’t require you to open a file before converting it.

One of Nitro PDF Pro’s best features is its tight integration with Microsoft Windows. This integration means you can create PDF files the way you prefer, such as drag and drop, right click, or within the application. The conversion process is very easy.  You simply drag files from within Windows Explorer or the Desktop into Nitro Pro. Its integration also extends to Microsoft Office.  You can print to PDF from the ribbon toolbar in Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.  If needed, Nitro PDF Pro also supports batch convert collections of different files – like reports, spreadsheets, drawings, and presentations – all in one task. It’s easy to combine documents into a searchable, easy-to-share PDF file.

Read full review | Download Nitro PDF Pro

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Remember things big and small from your everyday life with Evernote

One of the most important things that you can do with your mobile device, your computer or laptop is take notes. If you’re a student, educator, or business professional, then you know what I’m talking about. Keeping track of action items, assignments, lesson plans, etc., is something that everyone has an interest in. That’s one of the reasons why I like Evernote. This multifunction tool has specialized functionality in order to keep you organized.

Evernote makes it easy to remember big and small things from your everyday life, using your computer, phone, tablet and the web. With Evernote, all of your notes, web clips, files and images are made available on every device and computer you use, anytime, anywhere. All you need is a connected device and available bandwidth. Evernote does the rest.

With Evernote, you can remember the things that YOU like. You can instantly save everything cool and exciting you see online. You can snap a photo, record some audio and save it to a note and have that note, with that cool content sync to every one of your connected endpoints. As such, you can take notes anywhere. If you’re always on the move, your notes and important information should be too. With Evernote, those important items are on every computer, phone and device you use.

Since notebooks sync instantly, Evernote makes it easy to work with remote friends and colleagues. You can share your notes and collaborate on projects with friends, colleagues and classmates regardless of their location, time zone, etc.  Evernote can be used to bring project information and teams together regardless of who is working on which parts, and can centralize all your information.

Read full Review | Download Evernote for WindowsDownload Evernote for Mac

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Create professional-looking movies and demos from your computer screen with Camtasia Studio

I create training materials all the time. Part of what I do for my day job occasionally requires me to train end users in some kind of computer based process or procedure. It doesn’t happen all that often, but when it does, I’m glad I have tools like Camtasia Studio. It’s a screencast tool for Windows.

Creating a great screencast happens in three simple steps: Record, Edit and Share.

Camtasia Studio’s flexible recording options allow you to capture a full screen or a window or region. You can add in music tracks, a spoken, vocal track, or your computer’s audio.  You can also include picture-in-picture video with your web camera. If you’re using PowerPoint to give a presentation that you want to record for use by invitees who couldn’t attend the initial presentation, Camtasia’s toolbar inside PowerPoint makes it easy to record your presentations, either live or from your desk.  TechSmith’s exclusive SmartFocus technology keeps track of where the action happens on your computer screen during your recording. It then produces a video that zooms in on the parts you need to show.

Once you have your content recorded, Camtasia Studio allows you to spruce it up.  You can easily create callouts by adding a graphic over your video to direct the attention of your viewers. You can also link to an external webpage or jump to a part of the video.  If you’re stuck for the right graphic to use, Camtasia Studio comes stocked with professionally-designed assets you can drag-and-drop into your video. You can also the store your callouts, title slides, and other assets for re-use and sharing later.

After you have your screencast created, the final step is sharing it with your audience.  You can share to YouTube and Screencast.com, TechSmith’s video hosting service.  You can also produce videos in a variety of formats including, MP4, FLV/SWF, M4V, AVI, WMV, MOV, RM, Animated GIF and MP3 (for audio only).

Read full review | Download Camtasia Studio

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