The One App You Need To Achieve Your Savings Target In 2016

The concept of wealth creation through savings for the proletariat is something I tweeted against. Nevertheless savings, must be of immense importance to the proletariat, probably even more than those who earn above average. It’s also very difficult to save when disposable income doesn’t even appear capable of matching monthly expenditures. The habit of saving was also one of the most difficult to learn; it was only until last year that I personally exceeded my savings targets for the first time. Everything I did in full doesn’t include using an app, but I believe if I discovered this app earlier last year, I would have really achieved more with savings.

  
The Wallet … this app is not your ordinary expenses tracker, or budget app, or anything most of those other apps promise but don’t deliver … this app is actually an ordinary app with “extraordinary” utilities. If you hate tracking expenses or if you feel that tracking expenses is boring and hard to keep up, this app makes it easier. This app will tell you where your money is coming from, how you’re spending it, how fast you’re spending it, where you spend the most, what you spend on the most etc. It has a “Debts” hub, where you keep track of all records of those you lend to and those you borrow from, fusing the figures effortlessly into your cash flow. What makes this app my favorite is how it reports to you. It doesn’t have complex diagrams which only make sense to PhD Finance holders, it uses user chosen colors to tell you exactly what you need to know about your expenditures and earnings.

  
Widening your income streams or generating more is a sure way to making savings easier, but the way this our economy is currently setup, if that’s proving to be so much of a challenge in the interim, knowing what you spend on and realising which expenses can be controlled is a good way to start. I have been in the position of not knowing what I used my money for: I’ll feel I had so much yesterday and wouldn’t know how I disbursed it. That has completely changed with this app. Inputting data immediately is the best as the app gets the opportunity to capture more data; where exactly you made the expenditure (has Google maps services imbedded) and the time of the expenditure. So the where becomes very useful … let’s assume you check on reports at the end of the month and you realise that you spent more at Smoothy’s, I believe such an information will become useful.

  
The only downside is that, users who have used the app on both Android and iOS claim that features on Android is far more advanced, intuitive and superior to that on iOS. I believe with time, the developers will push updates to rectify the difference.

Until then, happy budgeting. Visit www.budgetbakers.com to learn more 

Wallet on Android https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.droid4you.application.wallet

Wallet on iOS https://appsto.re/gh/ltJI9.i

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How To Update Your HTC One M8 to ANDROID M

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It was all joy when I got the update notification. HTC has more than kept its promise to make updates available to HTC One devices (M7 will not receive Android 6.0) three months after Google releases it. If you have an HTC One M8 and haven’t received the OTA update notification for Android 6.0 Marshmallow yet, then you can check the status of your update by going to http://www.htc.com/us/go/htc-software-updates/. But if you have a factory unlocked version or a developer edition, then you should have received the update by now. Quickly check for updates by going into Settings > About > Software updates > CHECK NOW.  If you get the feedback that “There are no updates available for your phone,” then it’s obvious your device is not factory unlocked or a developer edition.

However, it doesn’t mean that the story ends here for everyone using an HTC One M8 which is not factory unlocked or a developer edition (and can’t seem to want to wait till a career is done certifying and testing the update). Mine was actually locked to a network but I managed to learn how to convert it into a developer edition for it to get recognized by HTC servers as one. I wrote about how to do that for a tech site (setuix.com) last year so I will direct you there for all the steps you will need. If you have a factory unlocked version or a developer edition, then all you need to do is to go to HTC to download the RUU which was available last year in December.

  1. Back up all user apps and data using Helium by following these STEPS
  2. Download and install HTC drivers on your windows device, then enable developer options and android debugging by following these STEPS
  3. Now unlock your bootloader by following these simple STEPS
  4. Then root your device (chill, you I am not going to recommend a custom ROM) by following these STEPS
  5. After rooting, S-Off your device by following these STEPS
  6. Then now, change the CID and MID of your HTC One M8 to either a factory unlocked version or a developer version by following these STEPS
  7. Now go HTC’s site and download the RUU for factory unlocked version or developer version HERE. This is the Android 6.0 RUU.

Enjoy the goodness Android M brings!

My 2015 in Tech & 2016 Tech Wish list

SMARTPHONES

I’ll start off with my good old HTC One M8! This guy is a rock! I got it in 2014 … never used a screen protector for it, never got a case for it (bought an HTC Dotview case but never used it) … and it still looks fairly used. One thing I have to acknowledge though: I rarely drop my phones, no matter how slippery, but anytime I dropped this guy (irrespective of the surface) I picked it up with confidence.

My Samsung Galaxy Note 4 LDU was a gift from my good friend Amanor. It was usually in my backpack because it is huge (5.7 inches display) and couldn’t take a sim. But it was a good buddy at home, where it could hook onto the router and feel “all able.” I also migrated all my high-end Android games (Leo’s Fortune, BADLAND, Modern Combat 5 & N.O.V.A 3) onto this guy and it’s huge display & battery took mobile gaming to a different level.

Then an iPhone 6 made a late entry in October: a gift from my boss. Those close to me know me as a hardcore Android fan, but I was super excited to have this device. I still struggle with apps to fill the 64GB of space, but I’ve found joy in Apple Music and Go To Gold 2 (a Chinese puzzle exclusive to iOS). It has been my go to guy for taking pictures because of its great camera. The Twitter app on this guy is also awesome I must admit.

SMARTPHONES’ ACCESSORIES

My Motorola 4000mah Portable Power Bank with a built in cable for Android devices was the messiah whenever/wherever any of my devices ran out of juice or when dumsor struck. I acquired it for a little over $20 on Amazon this year and it has “over” paid off!

When the key with the remote controls of my car got misplaced, I had little option than to ensure that the spare doesn’t suffer the same fate. The HTC Fetch has done me a lot of service. Connected to my HTC One M8 (& hooked to the key), it beeps every time I leave it behind or when the connection to the phone has been lost. If I can’t locate my key within Bluetooth range, I just tap the app and it beeps!

When it comes to earphones and headphones, I’m a Sony-head, though the iPhone’s earpods are also ok. Sony MDR-XB250 headphone and MH410c earpiece ensured that I enjoyed my music OTG and during workouts.

LAPTOP

The slim, metal body Dell Inspiron 7548 (standard version) comes with a full HD display, 1TB HDD, 8GB DDR3 and Intel  Core i5, clocked at 2.20 GHz. I tweaked mine to 12GB DDR3 and 128GB SSD, using the 1TB it shipped with as an external drive. Running Windows 10, the device remains my best ever!

WEARABLE TECH

I only have one; the Pivotal Tracker 1 by Pivotal Living. This fitness band sells for less than $15 on Amazon but does almost everything the very “high end, over priced” ones do. I will give it a review this year so the less I say now, the better.

2016 WISH LIST

ROBIN! Nextbit’s Robin! I am working on pre-ordering that “smart smartphone” as it ships just this February. That’s low-key ditching HTC … but honestly, it was a very disappointing 2015 for HTC, especially with the A9. If they wow me this year, well … **fingers crossed** (the Oliver Twist in me is also keeping an eye on Sony’s 4K display devices … if the 2016 releases are dope enough, we may have to just increase the budget for gadgets *pensive*)

Will I upgrade my iPhone 6 to 7? Certainly!

I also hope to acquire a good camera.

Afehyia pa!

[SOLVED] DELL Backup & Recovery Error … Creating Factory Recovery Media

An error occurred while creating the factory recovery media” is the feedback you’ll get when your Dell Backup & Recovery app does not successfully create a bootable backup; when you try to create a factory reset image, or when you try cloning an SSD for a hard disk upgrade. I personally experienced the error when I tried changing the HDD in my Dell Inspiron 15 7548 to an SSD. After a couple of fruitless troubleshooting, I did the following. You can also give it a shot if you are also experiences the same issue(s).

Make sure that your Dell Backup & Recovery app is updated to the most recent version

1. Open Windows Explorer, clicked on My Computer (This Computer)

2. Locate “Manage” on the Ribbon. If you don’t see the ribbon, tap or click the “Expand the Ribbon button in the upper right or press Ctrl+F1 (Ctrl+F1 doesn’t work for me).

3. When the “Computer Management” dialogue box opens, locate “Disk Management” on the left pane, under “Storage.”

4. If there is any “unallocated disk space” on the directory you’re trying to clone, or have the bootable backup on, delete it and format the disk to NTFS with default allocation size. This is also to say that the hard disk you’re trying to use for the backup should have no partitions.

5. Safely remove the formatted disk and plug it back into the computer. Re-do the backup.

Leave a comment if there are any further issues.

Backward Compatibility: XBOX One & 360

Sony please are you listening?! This is great news for all XBOX One owners: they can now slot in their 360 discs and enjoy! That simple, nothing else is required. If you purchased your game from the XBOX Marketplace, this works for you as well. You can download your old games onto your new console without any extra heartbeat. This great feature comes later this year, but if you are an XBOX One Preview member, call this Christmas in June: you get to experience this great feature from today!

This means you can now enjoy playing online with friends who have not upgraded to XBOX One. PlayStation really needs to copy this, seriously. It’s only natural to ask myself why I purchased a PS4, but I never had XBOX 360 anyway so no biggie. However, most friends are still on PS3 and I’m really relishing the opportunity to play with them online. The hardware barriers should be breached already, and Microsoft has really been kind to XBOX owners.

Sony, I’ve got my eyes on you!

Windows 10: Who Gets It & When?

I would want to believe that Microsoft finalized Windows 10 last week. If you’re excited as I am, let’s get to who is to get it and when.

The initial decision by Microsoft was to update all Windows 7 and above: pirated and genuine. That would have sent the wrong message obviously; who should spend blocks acquiring a software when pirated versions will also receive updates anyway? Those who acquired previous versions legitimately will also feel they’ve been subtly foolish … then Microsoft pulled the plug on that decision. An ardent Windows user myself, the excitement about Windows 10 has called for some in-house cleaning and upgrades. My Dell Inspiron’s memory has been upgraded to 12GB (the new DDR3 which uses less power), and there are plans of replacing the 1TB HDD it shipped with, with a 512GB SSD.

To get Windows 10 via update when it becomes available on 29th July this year, you must have already reserved your “update spot” by signing up for the update via the Get Window 10 (GWX) app. The app cannot be installed like any other .exe file (to the best of my knowledge). If you don’t have it yet, run your Windows Update program (genuine Windows only). Once the GWX app has been successfully installed on your computer, you should find a white windows icon on the right hand corner of your taskbar. Let me show you mine 🙂

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However, recent reports suggest that not everyone (whether you reserved an update via GWX or not) will be able to upgrade to Windows 10 on 29th July. The update will be episodic, with the 5 million+ Windows 10 Insiders currently previewing the OS getting the update first. It’s only after those chosen 5 million have their share, before those of us who have reserved an update can look to getting ours. Simply put, don’t over expect an update on the 29th if you’re not an Insider currently previewing the OS. But then again, from now until 29th is a long ride. Microsoft can surprise us all.

What we’re to expect in Windows 10 is public knowledge. What not to expect has however, not seen much light. There are some minor tradeoffs to updating from Windows 7 or 8.1. The update means saying bye bye to the Hearts game, the windows Media Center (which was useless in 7 anyway) and no DVD playback software “yet” (VLC got our backs). Then there’s that annoying [because data doesn’t come cheap in Ghana] default “automatically download updates,” which cannot be changed in the Home Editions (Pro and Enterprise users can chill).

Fingers crossed, 29th should come already!

The Trotro: Drivers Strike & Where Not To Sit

The DVLA issued some directives which didn’t go down well with most public transport drivers. They seem not to understand why all passengers in Trotros and taxis should wear seat belts and for drivers to attain a certain minimum level of education before they are allowed to drive. Achieving the first immediately might be problematic, but the latter is necessary; I don’t see why anyone should be allowed to drive if the person cannot read. The strike (which shouldn’t be violent) is obviously affecting us all. I was late to work today … already Trotros are scarce on Monday mornings so the impact of the strike was really felt by passengers. I stood jaw-dropping at some point. People were entering the Trotro through the windows; passengers were willing to pay more, even if they were to be packed like sardines. Sigh … The hustle is real.

Just so we’re all on the same wavelength on the subject … “Trotro is a crowded, but efficient and inexpensive, minibus used for short distance travel.”GhanaWeb. This definition may need some amendments in recent times; yes it’s a crowded minibus used for short distance travel, but it’s no more cheap, neither is it efficient. Some trotros are convenient I must admit. Some are spacious with clean seats and neatly dressed mates. Some drivers even decorate theirs with some noisy LCD screen, thrilling passengers to some free Lil Win/Agya Koo movies. Even though I personally dislike the noise, it tends to keep the atmosphere in the bus calm, as the talkatives stay mute. One engrossing truth about the Trotro is that at least, two out of ten times of being on it, you’ll get down regretting and swearing not to take it again. But chaley, “you dey deceive your body.” If you don’t have your own car, your Trotro days haven’t ended and you may want to keep an eye on the paragraph below, just to make sure you’re being shrewd about making your short trips comfortable (thank me later).

In a 207 (Mercedes Sprinter), avoid the front seats. Avoid it! Irrespective of being next to the gear or door. Just avoid it! Next to the gear is hell in a minibus! You’ll have limited space for your legs, long or short. The heat from the engine (which is located around that side) can make you nauseous [don’t ask me how]. The very first seat on the first row (from right to left) is also a no no! If you are not lucky, and you leave your hand holding anywhere near the right side of the car, you’ll get down without a finger. Avoid the second seat [which is next to the mate] on the second row. Don’t be deceived … if the fumes from the mate’s armpit doesn’t give you catarrh, he’ll sell his seat and overload the row. On the third row, avoid the seat right behind the mate. If it’s time for him to take the fare, he’ll inevitably lean on you (and we all know how rare neatly dressed mates are). Avoid the back seat if you have long legs; you might have to share the space for them with a spare tire. Look, I love babies, I love children (we all do, right?), but please avoid sitting next to the mother of three who’s willing to pay for only one seat (unless you’re willing to help her carry one of her children at least). Finally, avoid the mechanic brother who failed to change into something decent before joining the trotro. Trust me, their working gear can indelibly stain a black wool.

If your trotro days haven’t ended (mine will end soon … not the “soon” in Jesus is coming soon please) then you might wanna share some places we must all avoid in the Trotro by leave a comment.