Once you’ve found a show you’re interested in and want to watch offline, perhaps on your commute or on a long flight, select it and then tap the Download icon next to the episode you’re after. You will then see a blue progress bar along the bottom of the app. Once downloaded, you’ll see a blue icon next to that episode.
You can find your downloaded shows by navigating to the menu and tapping My Downloads. Simply press play and watch away.
If you have enough space on your phone or tablet and some time before you’ll be disconnected from the internet, you might want to download in Higher video quality.
To do so, go to the menu and scroll down to App Settings. Under Downloads, tap Video Quality and choose the option that suits you.
Samsung has updated it’s A series phones for 2017, which comprises the A3, A5 and A7. The bestseller is the A3, which is the smallest of the three models with a 4.7in screen like the iPhone 7. We’ve put the new Samsung Galaxy A3 through its paces to find out how it compares with its predecessors, rivals and bigger siblings to help you decide whether or not to buy it. Read on for our full Samsung Galaxy A3 review.
The new Samsung Galaxy A3 is available to buy now priced at £279. Its bigger counterparts, the A5 and A7, are priced at £399 and £499 respectively.
There are rivals available that come close to matching the specs and performance of the Galaxy A3 with a lower price tag, some of which we’ll talk about later in this review, but if you’re set on a Samsung phone we think this is a good option, particularly when you consider its good-looking design.
Plus, we expect the price of the A3 to drop quite significantly quite quickly, so, if you’re willing to wait, the price tag will likely soon be more appealing.
The first thing that struck us about the new A3 and its bigger siblings is its design, which now looks even more like Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S7 thanks to its slightly curved back and rounded edges that feel brilliantly comfortable in the hand.
We’re not the biggest fans of the shiny back because it soon becomes covered in fingerprints, but the lighter colours tend to hide those quite well so we’d recommend avoiding the black model if that’s something that bothers you. The model we reviewed was gold and we found that it did really well at hiding the fingerprints. There’s also a blue model and the Carphone Warehouse exclusive Peach Cloud option too.
The Galaxy A3 has actually increased in thickness in this latest update. Last year’s model was 7.3mm and this year’s measures 7.9mm. It’s a tiny difference though so you’re very unlikely to notice, and we think 7.9mm is slim enough.
That extra thickness could in part be due to the small battery bump and the addition of a fingerprint sensor, which is new for the A3 this year.
Samsung has also moved the phone’s speaker from the bottom of the device to the right side after last year’s move from the back to the bottom. This time the idea is that the position of the speaker means you’ll never cover it up, whether you’re playing a game or watching a video and it works brilliantly. It’s a great move.
One of the most exciting things about the A3’s design and build is its new IP68 waterproof rating like the Samsung Galaxy S7, which is a real boon for the clumsy like us and will put your mind at rest if you’re out and about with your phone in the unpredictable British weather. This rating makes the A3 waterproof up to 1.5 metres for 30 minutes, so you could even take it into the pool on holiday if you’re feeling brave enough.
The Galaxy A3’s 4.7in screen hits the sweet spot for us when it comes to screen size. Most flagship phones these days have a screen that’s 5in or bigger, but we prefer the portability of the 4.7in screen size and find it to be a good balance between being usable, enjoyable for gaming and videos, and a comfortable fit in the hand, pocket or bag.
The screen itself is Samsung’s HD Super AMOLED display, which the company describes as 2.5D due to its slight curve at the edges. Super AMOLED screen tech is our favourite of all phone displays thanks to its vibrant, slightly oversaturated colours and excellent contrast. This screen hasn’t changed since last year’s models and is still HD at 1280×720 pixels, but due to the smaller screen size this still offers a pixel density of 312ppi. It’ll be sharp enough for most users, but it’s worth noting that there are phones with lower price tags that offer better screens, including the upcoming Moto G5 with its Full HD (1920×1080 pixels) screen.
Samsung Galaxy A3: Specs & hardware
Beneath that screen is the tech that powers the A3, including its 1.6GHz Exynos 7870 Octa-core processor. That’s an improvement over the 1.5GHz Exynos 7578 quad-core processor in last year’s model and is paired with 2GB RAM over 1.5GB too.
We found the phone to be responsive and speedy even when opening apps including the camera, but we know from experience with previous A series phones from Samsung and other phones with mid-range processors that it’ll likely slow down a bit once you start eating through storage.
We put the A3 through its paces in our benchmark tests to find out how it compares with rivals. We found that it managed a score of 3297 in the multi-core Geekbench 4 performance test, which is similar to scores achieved by the likes of the Honor 6X. It’s much, much lower (and therefore slower and less powerful) than flagship rivals but that’s to be expected.
In the GFX graphic tests, the A3 scored similarly to its 2016 predecessor, with 19fps for the T-Rex onscreen test and 10fps for the Manhattan test. That’s again very similar to the Honor 6X.
There’s 16GB of internal storage in the A3, but there is now also the capacity to add up to 256GB thanks to the microSD card slot, which is an improvement over last year’s 128GB max. You’ll likely never need quite that much, but most users will want to add a microSD card of some size to the phone as you’re left with a lot less space once all of the preinstalled apps are taken into account.
When it comes to connectivity, the A3 now charges via USB-C like Samsung’s Note 7. USB-C will soon be the norm for all phones rather than the current MicroUSB, but it does mean there’s a slightly annoying transition period to deal with first as you’ll need to get used to the new cable and potentially new adapters for your accessories too.
The battery has increased in capacity slightly over its predecessor, now 2,350mAh rather than 2,300mAh. It’s still non-removable, but it does offer fast charging. We found that the battery would last more than a day on one charge.
The A3 also has NFC, 802.11ac WiFi, Bluetooth 4.2 and GPS.
Samsung Galaxy A3 2017 review: Camera
The Samsung Galaxy A3’s rear camera is still the 13Mp f/1.9 snapper with an LED flash that we got with last year’s model. There’s autofocus but still no optical image stabilisation, which means you’ll need to keep a steady hand to capture the best shots.
We weren’t blown away by the camera (take a look at some test shots above) and we found that we sometimes had to take two or three pictures to get a crisp shot, but overall they’re reasonably sharp and offer realistic colours. There are various shooting modes to choose from too, including Pro, Panorama, Continuous Shot, HDR, Night and more, as well as plenty of Instagram-like filters.
The major camera improvement goes to the front-facing camera, though, which is now 8Mp rather than 5Mp.
When it comes to video, the A3 is capable of capturing 1080p video at 30fps.
Samsung Galaxy A3 2017: Software
The A3 now offers Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow, with Samsung’s TouchWiz UI overlaid but nothing particularly notable and there are some features missing that you’ll find on Samsung’s flagship models like Multi-Window View, Pop-Up Window modes and more.
Samsung Galaxy A3 vs A5 vs A7
Taking a quick look at how the A3 compares to its bigger siblings now, you’ll find that there are some quite big differences although they do come at £100 a time. Take a look at the table below for more details.
It’s a common misconception that Windows comes complete with Microsoft Office for every user. However, there are ways of getting Office, including Word, on Windows 10 for free, plus iOS and Android. See also:How to use Excel
Microsoft’s current strategy for Office means that you can download its mobile apps for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for free on a wide range of devices including Android and iOS. You can download these apps for iOS, Android and Windows 10 using the links below.
What you can and can’t do with free Office apps
While these are free for any Windows 10 device, they don’t simply allow you full access to all the functions.
If you’re using a PC or laptop you’ll only be able to read documents and will need an Office 365 subscription to create and edit. However, those of you running Windows 10 on a device with a 10.1in screen or smaller (so, many tablets) can use the apps fully including creating and editing.
Being able to view documents isn’t much use so for anyone on a PC, laptop or tablet with a screen bigger than 10.1in then you’ll want to use an alternative to Microsoft Office if you don’t want to pay. An Office 365 Subscription will cost you from £5.99 per month.
Before we look at some alternatives, remember that you can use Office Online if you have a Microsoft account, and that isn’t limited to only PCs or laptops running Windows 10. This is essentially Office but you just use it entirely in your web browser. You can also try Office 2016 for free.
Best Office alternatives
There are various alternatives to Microsoft Office out there that are completely free.
Our recommendation is LibreOffice which is a full suite that’s regularly updated and allows you to open and save documents in Microsoft formats. You can download LibreOffice here.
Should you happen to dislike Libre Office, you can also check out free alternatives such as WPS Office, Free Office and Google Docs which is now simply a part of Google Drive.
Blizzard’sStarCraft(plus itsBrood Warexpansion) is one of the most notable games in history. It’s the definitive real-time strategy genre, and its sequel continues to garner fans and players in the esports scene. This summer, you can revisit the classic title withStarCraft: Remastered.
To bring the new version up to today’s presentation standards, Blizzard updated the game’s visuals and audio. Specifically, the game will now support up to 4K resolution. In terms of the overall campaign, the studio will also add new illustrations throughout cutscenes in an effort to “enhance storytelling.”
Those who prefer online play will find a new matchmaking feature in addition to the ranked ladder system. That means the game will be connected to Blizzard’s current online network so that it takes full advantage of additional updates. Other features include support for eightadditional languages (on top of the five languages included in the first game) and cloud saves for keybindings, replays, custom maps, and your overall campaign progress.
Blizzard also announced that the original game and expansion will receive an update later this week. On top of fixes and improvements, version 1.18 will add an observer mode, the ability to create your own keybindings, “modern anti-cheat measures,” and improvements to the game’s overall compatibility with Windows 7, 8.1, and 10. As a final treat, Blizzard’sStarCraft Anthology, which includes the original game and the expansion, will be free to download and play when the update is released.
Blizzard hasn’t announced a specific release date forStarCraft: Remastered, although it did say that the game is set to come out this summer. It will be playable on both Windows and Mac OS.
We can let out our spare rooms and rent our cars, but what about the processing power going spare in our PCs? Golem aims to put it to use, offering up compute cycles to companies, academics and anyone else who needs spare processing power, while letting us earn a few extra pounds from our under-used machines.
What is Golem?
It’s Airbnb for your computer: a worldwide, distributed supercomputer. Rather than let strangers into your spare bedroom, you can let them into your PC. If you need resources, you buy the processing power; if you have spare resources, you can offer them for rent .
Similar ideas have been trialled for charity. Julian Zawistowski, the CEO of developer company Imapp, said there were “a lot of inspirations [behind Golem], but perhaps [email protected] and BOINC are the most important ones”. These schemes let volunteers hand over processing power – the former to hunt for aliens; the latter for research into climate change and disease.
What can you use Golem for?
The public alpha currently only supports a specific type of rendering (Blender), but a first release is planned for next year and Golem will be capable of any type of processing in the future.
Is it secure?
The trading is managed by blockchain, the distributed ledger technology developed via Bitcoin, so transactions will be secure. In terms of data, Zawistowski said all computation is done in a sandbox and transfers can be encrypted. “It’s as secure as any public cloud,” he said.
How much could I make?
It depends on your PC’s processing power: a laptop may only earn a few dollars, while a gaming rig could earn much more.
Time to retire!
Not so fast – you’ll be paid in Golem Network Tokens (GNT), a digital currency á la Bitcoin that you’ll have to trade for spendable cash.
That’s less interesting.
It isn’t all about money. There’s power in the idea, particularly its potential to rebuild the internet in a truly decentralised way If the network is big enough, it could offer an alternative structure, letting services be run and content delivered in a distributed way rather than via corporate data centres.
So it’s Golem versus Google, then?
It’s unlikely to usurp the big players, but it’s in keeping with the original idea of the internet to have decentralised nodes for sharing data. This would let users set up services or distribute content without middlemen such as Google – but that’s a long-term goal.
Kano, an education-focused company, had a huge hit on Kickstarter with its original Computer Kit, promising to provide everything you could need to “build your computer bit-by-bit”.
The truth is somewhat different. Inside this, Kano’s second Computer Kit Bundle, you’ll find that the computer you’re “building” is actually a fully assembled Raspberry Pi 3 single-board computer, with only power and its microSD card required to get it up and running. The bundled full-colour manual – which Kano dubs a “storybook” in keeping with its desire to engage children – walks you through the “building” process using simple terms and clear illustrations. Insert the microSD card, snap together the two halves of the included case, and then the most daunting step: connect the power cables for a small speaker and amplifier that’s set into the lid of the case onto the 5V and ground pins of the Pi’s general-purpose input-output (GPIO) header. After that it’s simply a case of inserting the bundled wireless keyboard’s USB dongle into a free slot, plugging the speaker into the 3.5mm audio-visual jack, and connecting power and a display.
It’s the need to provide your own HDMI-compatible display that Kano addresses with the second half of its bundle: the Screen Kit. Emblazoned with the promise that you’ll “make an HD screen,” it’s more accurate to say you’ll snap the pre-assembled screen into a plastic stand, fasten a PCB with buttons onto the rear of the case using the supplied sticky hook-and-loop tape, connect a linking wire, then snap your cased Kano to the rear before connecting USB power and a short HDMI cable.
Initially, then, the Kano experience is underwhelming, even allowing for the accessible nature of the “storybooks” and their occasional divergence into theory and foundational knowledge. Thankfully, this feeling is soon swept away when you power up the kit and are greeted by Kano OS, in what looks like an EGA DOS prompt from the 1980s.
For younger users, this part will require adult supervision: the first boot walks the user through basic Linux terminal concepts, changing directories and running a program, using a Matrix-themed hook. When the program is executed correctly, the terminal is replaced by a top-down 8-bit-style roleplaying game reminiscent of Nintendo’s finest, in which the player must progress towards the goal to load Kano OS proper.
Following this, and directly on subsequent boots, the Kano OS interface appears. Available in an icon-heavy default and more traditional desktop environment flavours that are switchable at will, this provides quick access to the bundled software as well as a means of managing a user account. This can be tied into Kano’s cloud servers for achievement tracking and software sharing.
The bundled software is heavily slanted towards coding. Many of the default apps are prefixed with “make” to emphasise this practicality, using a Scratch-inspired drag-and-drop interface suitable for younger programmers. Make Art, as the name implies, offers a turtle-style artistic experience; Make Apps is more open-ended; Make Minecraft works around the bugs of the Alpha-status Minecraft Pi Edition to allow users to easily build their own programmatic creations within its blocky world.
The jewel in the crown is Kano’s Story Mode. An extended version of the RPG from the initial boot introduction, this guides the player through various computing concepts in a way that’s both endearing and engaging. There’s an equivalent for the command line, too, dubbed Terminal Quest.
Sadly, all this – and the bundled stickers for customising your Kano cases – fails to justify the cost of the kit. At US$299 for the bundle, or $149 each if the Computer Kit and Screen Kit are bought individually, the Kano kit is considerably more expensive than a Raspberry Pi 3, official touchscreen and accessories – and lacks their touch capability.
Kano’s decision to release the Kano OS, built on Debian Linux, as a free download that can be installed onto any Raspberry Pi means that, for less than half the price of the Kano kit bundle, you can have a touch-enabled version lacking only the storybooks, stickers and built-in speaker. That makes it tough to recommend.