Sunday, December 10, 2017

Air Transfer

As I mentioned in my Back and Forth post I'm using an iOS app Air Transfer to copy photos from the iPhone to my Windows laptop.

Here's my workflow.

I launch Air Transfer.


On my laptop I browse to the URL that Air Transfer presents. It pretty much never changes.


On my laptop I click on the link to take me to the Camera Roll.


I select the photos that I want to transfer to my laptop. The free version of Air Transfer lets you select 10 photos at a time. The upgrade to the Pro version is $1.99.


I click on the Download link.


Air Transfer then creates a zip file and downloads it to my laptop.

When the download is complete I go back to the iPhone, double-click the home button and swipe away Air Transfer.

Then I launch Apple's Photo app and delete everything on the Camera Roll.

Done.

Why don't I use Google Photos? Actually I do. But Google Photos recompresses the photos so I don't use this copy for archive. I use the Google Photos copies for casual sharing.

Why don't I use Dropbox? Actually I do. But not for photo transfers. Dropbox renames the files. I prefer to maintain the original file name.

For a thorough comparison of Google Photos and Dropbox revisit my Dropbox vs Bluetooth vs Google Photos post. Think of Air Transfer as the iPhone equivalent of using Bluetooth on Android.

Here is one of the screen captures from the app store:


Here's what mine looks like:


Because there is no slider for WiFi Transfer you must swipe away the app. I asked the developer about his. He replied quickly.
I am currently overhauling the internals of the App.
The on/off switch was temporarily eliminated in current version.
To disconnect Air Transfer, you can either shutdown the WiFi of iOS or terminate Air Transfer.
The on/off function will be available in later updates.
A similar app is File Hub. It has a lot broader set of capabilities than Air Transfer but includes a Wi-Fi transfer service. I didn't stick with File Hub as it requires a web password on each execution. If you're using a public Wi-Fi this is absolutely necessary but on my home Wi-Fi this was just a nuisance.


Sunday, December 03, 2017

Contactless Payments

One day on my deals feed was this gadget:
The post said "We can all afford to be paranoid at this price."

Should we really be paranoid?

So I went to wikipedia.
The examples and perspective in this article may not represent a worldwide view of the subject. 
Contactless payment systems are credit cards and debit cards, key fobs, smart cards or other devices, including smartphones and other mobile devices, ...
Mobil was one of the most notable early adopters of this technology, and offered their "Speedpass" contactless payment system for participating Mobil gas stations as early as 1997.  

What does that really mean for you and me?

Not much.

Remember that opening statement from wikipedia: "The examples and perspective in this article may not represent a worldwide view of the subject."

Here are some valid concerns but it's from the UK.

Here is a North American-centric view of contactless payment systems.

"Nothing to see here, move along".

But remember that wikipedia also said: "...including smartphones and other mobile devices."

But smartphones and other mobile devices won't fit in the little case.

Not to worry.

Although these are "contactless" they are based on NFC. Although NFC is contactless there is always another layer of security, e.g. TouchID for Apple Pay.