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Having the ability to pay for goods or services without your wallet is convenient on its own right. For Samsung smartphone users, they can go to any store to buy goods and pay them with Samsung Pay successfully most of the time. But, how about other Android users? Can they only bite their fingers in jealousy?
Fortunately, there are a bunch of other alternatives on the Play Store that lets you do the same thing. They will most likely share the same functionality, although each of them will have their own unique features that may or may not suitable for certain people. Who knows, Samsung owners themselves may also be hooked in one of these apps once they’ve tried it.
Here are some of the most popular and high rated payment systems. You can say they are the competitors to Samsung Pay.Google Pay
Google Pay is the perfect replacement for Samsung Pay since it’s developed by the owner of Android OS itself, Google. The app also shares similar functionality. You can book a trip, buy foods & snacks, or buy tickets without having to directly use your cards using NFC, i.e., no need for any contact whatsoever.
Finding nearby supported shops is also possible. You can also use your card’s benefits, if there’s any, without having to use the actual cards such as gift cards or loyalty cards. Security protection is also one of the most important aspects that Google boasted about. Well, at least, it should be comparable to Samsung’s in terms of safety.
One important thing to note is that both apps support different regions. Countries like the US, Canada, Singapore, Australia, and some other regions are supported by both services. As for other countries, you can see a tendency. Samsung Pay generally supports most of the economically crowded Asian countries—except for Japan, surprisingly, while Google Pay focus its platform on European countries and only supports a handful of Asian countries such as India and Japan. To get more details, see the list on Wikipedia for Samsung and Google.
In summary, for those who haven’t be able to use Samsung Pay due to region restriction, you can potentially do so now with another alternative which is Google Pay that shares more or less the same functionality.PayPal
PayPal is a little bit different. While we can pay for goods and services using the app, the service is more geared towards users that wish to send & receive money. You can send money to people you know for free if the sender and recipient live in the US, either to PayPal balance or directly to a bank account. Otherwise, if you want to make an online purchase, PayPal offers Purchase Protection to make sure the transaction can be done without any issue.
PayPal can also issue a cash card that lets you transfer money from bank to your PayPal account, access PayPal balance, shop at any stores that accept MasterCard, and withdraw funds from ATMs around the globe. With PayPal, you can also set up a seller account for your business. It supports decent payment processing for large and small purchases so sellers can easily keep track of their sales. PayPal is accessible in more than 200 countries. That way, you can most likely use the service wherever you go.Payoneer
This particular app is quite popular for companies and freelancers alike. The platform offers users the ability to pay and receive money either locally or globally from business partners, customers, or clients. In a way, it’s very similar to PayPal, although Payoneer is more business-oriented.
To make things easier, Payoneer also provides the user an option to order a prepaid MasterCard that can be used to see the account balance on a certain currency. You can use this card for online purchases, stores, or ATMs that support MasterCard. It’s pretty much the same as the PayPal Cash Card.
With Payoneer, your account may accept multiple currencies including USD, EUR, GBP, and JPY. Furthermore, the service can be used in hundreds of countries, making the service perfect for those who travel a lot.Final Words
Some other apps have similar purposes to any one of the services mentioned above. For instance, there is Amazon Payments that offers means to process eCommerce transactions, giving the users identical experience that exists at chúng tôi There’s also Litecoin that includes online payment in the form of cryptocurrency. Paytm is also a viable choice for folks who live in India or Canada. For iOS users, there’s also Apple Pay, although it’s not available for Android phones.
If needed, you can try each of these apps and see which one is the most suited for your needs.
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Your computer’s built-in calculator app is acting like an old pocket calculator and that’s kind of weird.
The word processor on your computer doesn’t pretend to be a physical piece of paper, insisting that you draw words instead of typing. The contacts app on your computer doesn’t force you to turn virtual pages or limits the number of entries that begin with a particular letter. Why, then, are stock calculator apps insisting on being an on-screen recreation of an electronic device from the 60s, with all of the same limitations?
These apps, which you can call notepad calculators, allow you to write down equations and see the answer in real-time, while also offering features like natural language parsing, unit conversations, and even built-in connections to work out things like currency values. These tools allow you to type “16 tablespoons in cups” and get an actual answer.
(That’s one cup, in case you were wondering).Numi
Numi is one of the first notepad calculators I noticed and my personal favorite. You can do straightforward number crunching by using the app as a normal calculator—just type out the operation and you’ll see the result. But Numi also supports natural language, so when you type “6k divided by 12,” you’ll also get a correct answer.
According to the developers, Numi supports every unit of distance, length, area, and volume you can think of, percentages, time zones, currencies and cryptocurrencies, and various trigonometry functions. So, for example, the platform can figure out what is 3 inches in centimeters, what’s 5 percent of 123, how much is $20 in Euros, or what’s the price of one Bitcoin. There’s a lot more to dig into here, too, including the ability to set variables early in the document and use them later.
Numi is free to download for macOS. The full version, including unlimited notes and iCloud syncing, is available for a one-time payment of $20.Parsify
Parsify is very similar to Numi but is also available to non-Mac people. You can write equations and use natural language in the left panel, and results will show up on the right. This platform also supports tabs, which means you can have several documents open at once.
According to the Parsify docs this application supports unit conversions, currencies and cryptocurrencies, and time zones. As with Numi, you can use “prev” to pull in the solution to the previous line and set variables early in the document to pull in later.
Parsify is free to download for Windows, macOS, and Linux, but limits files to only five lines. The full, unlimited version will set you back $29.Evaluator
Evaluator is different from the other apps on this list. You can have it running in the background, and summon it by hitting the keyboard shortcut, Alt+Space. A small window will pop up in the middle of the screen ready for you to crunch up some numbers.
Evaluator doesn’t offer as many bells and whistles as the above apps—there’s no currency support and it can’t handle natural language. But it makes up for this by always being ready and being the fastest number cruncher in the west.
Evaluator is free to download for Windows and macOS.Numpad
[Related: The best retro-cool and versatile calculator watches]
Open the site and you’ll see the documentation right away, which you can even edit to learn about all of the platform’s functionality. Numpad can do basic math, unit and currency conversion, percentages, and more. There’s even support for calculating dates—for example, you can type “25th December 2023 – 80 days” to find out when 80 days before Christmas is. The app also supports the keyboard shortcuts you use in the text editor Vim and Emacs, if you’re interested in that sort of thing.
Numpad is free and available on the web.Other ways to quickly crunch numbers
Actually, you don’t need a dedicated app to do quick calculations. Here are a few other ways you can let machines do the heavy lifting for you:
Google search. Type and search any equation to get the answer, including things like unit or currency conversions.
The Windows start menu. Open the start menu and type any equation to see the result show up in the right-side panel. It’s a little laggy but it works.
Spotlight on macOS. Type command + space bar to bring up the default search tool and type any equation to instantly see the answer.
Voice assistants. If you’re the kind of person who prefers to do math out loud, the Google Assistant, Alexa, and Siri can all answer basic math questions.
That’s a blow for many people who use (and love) the service. Not only is it a simple way of storing your photos in the cloud, it’s also great for finding photos thanks to Google’s powerful search, as well as for showing you photos from ‘this day’ in past years.
You can carry on backing up photos and videos to Google Photos for free, but now they’ll start using up your Google storage until it’s full.
When that happens, the backups will stop, and you’ll have to decide what to do. The obvious option is to pay for more Google storage. As standard you have 15GB, but you could pay a small monthly fee (£1.59/$1.99) for 100GB, or £2.49 / $2.99 for 200GB. If you want to store your whole family’s camera rolls, the 2TB Premium plan could be the one you need, but it does cost £79.99 /$99.99 per year.
However, you can share any paid-for plan with your family. And while it may sound crazy, paying for Google Photos is the best alternative to (free) Google Photos for most people!
But if you were never that bothered about the service itself and are determined to find an alterative, here are five options, one of which is ‘free’.1. Back up to your computer
If you don’t mind the inconvenience, you can set a reminder every so often to copy the photos and videos you’ve taken on your phone to your PC or laptop. As long as you have plenty of spare hard drive space, this is the cheapest option since you already own the storage.
If storage is lacking, you could buy an portable USB drive and copy the photos and videos via your computer to that drive instead.
It’s not the greatest alternative, and becomes labour intensive if you have to do all your family’s devices.2. Buy a NAS drive
These are essentially hard drives that attach to your home network and become your own ‘personal cloud storage’.
The good ones, including those from Synology, have mobile apps which will back up photos and videos from your phone(s) to the NAS automatically. Synology’s DS Photo app for Android and iOS can do this.
It’s a much more convenient solution to connecting phones to a computer. NAS prices start at under £100/$100 but you’ll usually have to buy the hard drives separately.3. Use an ‘on-the-go’ USB drive
If a NAS seems too expensive and too much hassle, a simpler option is a USB drive which can plug into your phone and backup its camera roll. One example is SanDisk’s iXpand Flash Drive Luxe.
It comes in capacities up to 256GB and has an iOS app which can automatically back up your photos and videos when you plug it in. It isn’t the best app ever, and certainly no substitute for Google Photos, but it does mean you have a back up of your camera roll which you could also copy to a computer, albeit one which has a USB-C port, since the drive has no standard USB connector or an adapter.
If you have only Android phones, you may be better off with an OTG flash drive since they’re cheaper for an equivalent capacity. Indeed, SanDisk’s own Ultra Dual USB Flash Drive (which has micro- and full-size USB connectors is under £20/$20 from Amazon.4. Use a cloud storage service
If you pay for Google One storage, that covers all Google services, not just Google Photos. So you can use it to store documents and files as well. But if you’re against the idea of a subscription, there are cloud services which offer a one-time payment for lifetime access, a bit like buying an online hard drive.
An example is pCloud, which has an app that will automatically back up photos and videos to your cloud storage when you take them.
So it really depends upon whether you value the way Google Photos surfaces your photos, or if you simply want them stored safely somewhere that isn’t eating up your phone’s storage space.
If you are tempted by a lifetime cloud storage deal, pCloud offers 500GB for a one-off payment of £159 or 2TB for £309.
For £4.66/$6 per month,
The benefit is unlimited storage, so you can upload your entire photo library and not worry about how long it will be before your storage is full.6. iCloud
This is mainly because the Photos app on iPhone is already very good at displaying and searching for photos, and has several AI-boosted features which do useful things such as automatically creating highlights videos.
iCloud seamlessly works in the background to store those photos and videos without taking up space on your iPhone. Apple still only offers a paltry 5GB for free – the stingiest of all cloud services – but the prices to upgrade to more substantial figures are reasonable – and certainly in line with the costs for Google One storage.Related articles for further reading
Paperless is here to stay — and for very good reasons, too!
Here, I want to explore five of the best digital alternatives to traditional Christmas greetings cards and show you how paperless can make this festive time of the year even more memorable.
If you are looking for seasonal inspiration for family or for work, check out these digital choices to complement or replace the paper card this Christmas.1. E-Cards For All Occasions
Probably the biggest direct competitor is the electronic card (or e-card). There are many paid and free e-card services available online, but creating your own from scratch using email clients like Microsoft Outlook and Apple Mail are my preferred choice.
This gives you the chance to get creative and have fun with family, friends or colleagues, and really gives Christmas that personalized touch.
For those of you with family and friends overseas, or for people working away during the festivities, e-cards can also provide an instant means to say something special at the right time.
For business purposes, you can also use affiliate tracking software to make sure your message was received and fuel further conversation.
Here’s an example of e-cards in action. In this case, it was the team at Vertical Leap (my place of work) getting festive and donating to Save the Children Christmas Jumper Day:2. SMS From Santa
For younger members of the family, what better way to say Merry Christmas than with a call or SMS direct from Santa Claus? Santa can chat directly to your children or even text your phone with a personalized message.
In this example from chúng tôi text messages will be sent over the festive season, and throughout the week building up to Christmas day.
This can be great for checking children have been good, reinforcing what they are hoping for from Santa, and making Christmas morning extra special for you and your family.
Here’s an example of the type of personalizing that can be achieved to make your children feel truly special this Christmas:3. Video Greetings
Depending on how tech savvy you are, video greetings can be a fantastic way to wish people well over the holiday season.
Basic video greetings can be recorded and send from mobile to mobile, or you may wish to use some of the paid-for retail offerings. Examples of this include MoonPig and VideoGram, although many other alternatives are available (including free options).
Here’s the video explainer from MoonPig:4. Audio Greetings
Saying (or even singing) your seasonal messages can be fantastic means to share personality this time of the year.
An audio message can be an easier option for the less technical savvy, and can be attached to emails, sent via SMS, or included as part of a digital or traditional card or message.5. DIY Digital Photo Collages
From static images to photo slideshows and more, collages can be an excellent way to get everyone involved with the festive fun.
They are quick to create, provide lots of follow-up opportunities – including personalized gifts – and enable you to create whatever your imagination can come up with. It is also a great way to humanize your brand.
Almost every mobile phone includes app functionality for creating collages, as do most basic office applications.
Here’s some my work team showing a basic collage for Christmas:Conclusion
At this time of the year, wishing colleagues, friends, family members and loved ones good will, regardless of the medium, is a great thing to do.
With the growth of digital alternatives to the traditional paper greetings cards, e-cards, audio, and photo collages, give you an immediate method to communicating when it is likely to matter the most. Whatever your medium, make sure your messages are well received this Christmas time.
Merry Christmas to you all and a happy New Year!
With the recent release and popularity of Apple Pay, it’s important to consider how it works and whether or not it offers an opportunity for your business. Apple Pay is a system developed by Apple that allows iPhone, iPad, and Apple iWatch users to store all of their credit cards and payment information on their mobile device. Apple claims his is actually a more secure way of paying than your traditional methods and that all of the user’s cards can be accessed in one convenient location.
Sounds pretty good, right?
With more and more people signing on to using Apple Pay for their one-stop shopping liaison, it is important to consider some of the ways that this system may impact your business plan directly. Start with a breakdown of what Apple Pay is more specifically and what it can be used for, and then you can start getting into ways this impacts businesses, as well as e-commerce sites specifically.What is Apple Pay?
As mentioned above the Apple Pay system is a digital wallet that allows users to keep track of all of their payment cards (credit or debit cards) in one place. The caveat is it is only available to users of the: iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6S, 6S Plus, Apple Watch-compatible devices (iPhone 5 and later models), iPad Air 2, iPad Pro, and iPad Mini 3 and 4.
Apple does not specifically require people work only with their terminal system, but will also work with Visa’s PayWave, MasterCard’s PayPass, and American Express’s ExpressPay terminals, so there is a lot of flexibility even though it is an Apple-specific system.
For now, I will address Apple Pay as a business tactic for in-person purchases or through an app available through the App Store, while making some suggestions on how you can incorporate or promote this service in your online environment.What Apple Pay Offers Your Clients
At this point, Apple Pay is really all about offering a service to your clients. It is convenient for them to operate and use, and knowing that your store has Apple Pay is bound to get them excited.
However, excitement aside—the Apple Pay readers are generally around $300-500, which can be a hefty cost for small businesses. Right now the system is being used by a great deal of corporate merchants including grocery stores, boutiques, restaurants, and hotels.
The entire list of Apple Pay retailers can be accessed here on Apple’s site. Some e-commerce businesses (again, mostly larger corporations at this point) are also able to use Apple Pay when users make a purchase using their site’s application.
On American Express’ Open Forum discussed whether or not Apple Pay was going to be worthwhile for small business. They mentioned 20% of Americans would likely have access to Apple Pay by the end of the year, that shoppers like the idea because it boosts their data security—but that ultimately the spread of Apple Pay is pretty uncertain, and it may not be worth the investment just yet.
On that note, I want to make some recommendations in the next section for small businesses and e-commerce sites who are thinking about incorporating Apple Pay into their business plan.Apple Pay Advice Small Businesses, Franchises, and E-Commerce Sites
Promote Apple Pay on your Website: Make sure you post that you have Apple Pay at your store locations on your website, that way site visitors know that they can use their contactless payment at your location. (This may sway them to shop with you over a competitor).
Develop a Mobile App: If developing an app is within reason, now is really the time to consider it. There are several developers and companies that can help you develop an application that would work well with your small business or e-commerce store, and relevant to this article, would also allow you to use Apple Pay.
Take it to Social Media: If you are going to make an investment in the Apple Pay system for the convenience of your customers, make sure you let them know about it! Take some time to launch social media announcements.
Newsletters and Other Email Marketing: It is a good idea to indicate the Apple Pay logo at the end of newsletter and email marketing. Again, you are paying to have this system, so you want to let as many customers know as possible so that people can truly benefit from the service. I recommend placing the “We Offer Apple Pay” logo somewhere around your social media links.The Takeaway
If you are going to take the time and effort (and funds) to incorporate Apple Pay into your business plan, I highly recommend you do so strategically. At the end of the day, this is something you are doing to benefit your customers, and thereby increase your business, so there is absolutely no reason not to make it clear that you offer the service, particularly if you are a small business owner.
There are so many passwords to keep track of these days, we all need some help—an app to help us manage them all. KeePass is often highly recommended, but is it the best password manager for you?
We’ll go through the challenges you may have with the program, and list some good alternatives.
But first, let me say that KeePass has a lot going for it. It’s open-source and very secure. In fact, it’s the application recommended by a number of important security agencies:
the German Federal Office for Information Security,
the Swiss Federal Office of Information Technology, Systems, and Telecommunication,
the Swiss Federal IT Steering Unit,
the French Network and Information Security Agency.
It’s been audited by the European Commission’s Free and Open Source Software Auditing Project and no security issues were found, and the Swiss federal administration chooses to install it on all of their computers by default. That’s a huge vote of confidence.
But should you install it on yours? Read on to find out.
Why KeePass Might Not Fit You
With all of that going for it, why should you hesitate to install it on your own computer? Here are some reasons that it’s not the best app for everyone.
User interfaces have come a long way in the last decade or two, and a number of password managers have had substantial improvements made to the way they look and feel. But not KeePass. Both the app and its website look like they were created last century.
Using chúng tôi I found a screenshot of KeePass from 2006. There’s no surprise that it looks quite dated.
Compare that to the screenshot you’ll find on the website today. It looks very similar. In terms of the user interface, KeePass hasn’t significantly changed since it was released in 2003.
If you prefer a modern interface, with all of the benefits it brings, KeePass may not be for you.
KeePass Is Very Technical
Ease of use is another thing expected of apps today. For most users, it’s a good thing. But technical users can feel that ease of use gets in the way of the functionality of an app. They’re the sort of users that KeePass was designed for.
KeePass users have to create and name their own databases and choose the encryption algorithms used to protect their data. They have to decide how they want to use the app and set it up that way themselves.
If the app doesn’t do what they want, they’re invited to create plugins and extensions that add those features. If they want their passwords on all of their devices, they have to come up with their own solution to sync them. They may find that it takes more steps to accomplish something compared to other password managers.
To some people, that sounds like fun. Technical users may relish the level of customizability that KeePass offers. But if you prefer ease of use, KeePass may not be for you.
KeePass Is Only “Officially” Available for Windows
KeePass is a Windows app. If you only want to use it on your PC, then that won’t be an issue. But what if you want to use it on your smartphone or Mac? It is possible to get the Windows version running on your Mac… but it’s technical.
Fortunately, that’s not the end of the story. Because KeePass is open-source, other developers can get hold of the source code and create versions for other operating systems. And they have.
But the result is a little overwhelming. For example, there are five unofficial versions for the Mac, and no easy way to know which one works best. If you prefer apps where the developers provide an official version for each operating system that you use, KeePass may not be for you.
KeePass Lacks Features
KeePass is quite full-featured and may have most of the functionality that you need. But compared to other leading password managers, it is lacking. I’ve already mentioned the most significant issue: it lacks synchronization between devices.
Here are a few more: the app lacks password sharing, the storing of private information and documents, and auditing of the security of your passwords. And password entries offer little customization.
By default, KeePass can’t fill in web forms for you, but third-party plugins are available that offer this functionality. And that raises one of KeePass’s strengths—savvy users can add the features they need.
Dozens of plugins and extensions can be downloaded from the official website that allows you to backup your passwords, use color codes, generate passphrase, create password strength reports, synchronize your vault, use Bluetooth key providers, and more.
Many technical users will love how extensible KeePass is. But if you prefer the features you need to be offered by default, KeePass may not be for you.
9 Alternatives to KeePass Password Manager
If KeePass isn’t for you, what is? Here are nine password managers that may suit you better.
1. The Open-Source Alternative: Bitwarden
KeePass isn’t the only open-source password manager available—there’s also Bitwarden. It doesn’t offer all of the technical benefits that KeePass does, but it’s much easier to use, and a better solution for many users.
The official version works on more platforms than KeePass, including Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS and Android, and your passwords will be automatically synchronized to each of your computers and devices. It can fill in web forms and store secure notes out of the box, and if you like, you can host your own password vault online.
But there’s a limit to what you get for free, and at some stage, you may decide to subscribe to one of Bitwarden’s affordable paid plans. Among other benefits, these allow you to share your passwords with others on your plan—whether that’s your family or workmates—and receive comprehensive password auditing.
If you prefer open-source software and also value ease-of-use, Bitwarden may be the password manager for you. In a separate review, we compare it in detail with our next suggestion, LastPass.
2. The Best Free Alternative: LastPass
If KeePass appeals to you because it’s free to use, have a look at LastPass, which offers the best free plan of any password manager. It will manage an unlimited number of passwords across an unlimited number of devices and offers all of the features most users need.
The app offers configurable password auto-fill and syncs your vault across all of your devices. You can share your passwords with an unlimited number of users (paid plans add flexible folder sharing), and store free-form notes, structured data records, and documents. And, unlike Bitwarden, the free plan includes comprehensive password auditing, warning you of which passwords are weak, repeated, or compromised. It even offers to change your passwords for you.
If you’re looking for the most usable free password manager, LastPass may be the one for you. Read our full LastPass review or this comparison review of LastPass vs KeePass.
3. The Premium Alternative: Dashlane
Are you looking for the best-in-class password manager available today? That would be Dashlane. It arguably offers more features than any other password manager, and these can be accessed just as easily from the web interface as the native applications. Personal licenses cost around $40/year.
It offers all of the features LastPass does, but takes them a little further, and gives them a little more polish. They both fill in your passwords and generate new ones, store notes and documents and fill in web forms, and share and audit your passwords. But I found Dashlane provides a smoother experience with a more polished interface, and it only costs a few dollars a month more than LastPass’s paid plans.
Dashlane’s developers have worked hard over the last few years, and it shows. If you’re looking for the most elegant, full-featured password management out there, Dashlane may be for you. Read our full Dashlane review.
4. Other Alternatives
But they’re not your only options. Here are a few more, along with the subscription cost of the personal plan:
KeePass is the most configurable, extensible, technical password manager that exists. It’s distributed under the Free Software’s GPL license, and tech geeks are likely to find it perfect for their needs. But other users are very likely to struggle with the application and would be better served by an alternative.
For those who prefer to use open-source software, Bitwarden is the way to go. The free version is also distributed under the GPL, but some features require that you obtain a paid license. Unlike KeePass, Bitwarden places an emphasis on ease of use and covers the same range of features as other leading password managers.
If you’re open to using closed-source software, there are quite a few other alternatives. LastPass offers a very full range of features in its free plan, and Dashlane arguably offers the most polished password management experience available today. I recommend them.
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