Cheat Sheet Q&A
Topic: The difference between Android and iOS apps
Hi – I was listening to you this morning when you explained about the possibility of being hacked on Android phones. I have resisted getting a smart phone for a long time. I am about to trade my flip phone for an Android because of the bigger screen. Maybe I should go with an iPhone instead. Can you explain to me again the problem with hacking on an Android?
Bottom Line: Well we actually have two different ideas coming together in this question. There is a significant difference between having a smart phone being hacked and obtaining malware and/or viruses via apps downloaded from an app store. If you want to protect your device from being hacked you’ll want to ensure that it isn’t “jail broken”. That means that the factory specifications of the phone have been alerted (this has been commonly done to move a phone from one mobile service provider to another that it wouldn’t otherwise work on). In general any new smart phone you purchase should be just fine with regard to being hacked. The more common issue is malware and/or viruses obtained through apps. This is where there is a distinct difference between the Apple and Android based app stores.
Apple’s app store is controlled by Apple itself. That means that in order to have an app accepted into Apple’s app store, the app developer has to submit the app to Apple. Apple then tests and vets the app and decides if they’ll allow it into their store. Because of this process it’s not possible to obtain malware or a virus from an app downloaded from the Apple app store.
Android is an open source platform for app developers. What that means is that if an app developer creates an app that will load on an Android device, they can load it into the Android app ecosphere without vetting. Some people prefer this option because there are more app options and no subjectivity. The flip side is that while the Android app store will take action to remove an app after it’s identified to contain malware, it’s always reactionary, meaning that the damage has already been done to those who had used an affected app.
So what should you make of this?
If you stick to apps from vendors you know and can trust you should be just fine. For example the Publix app is just as safe on Android devices as it is on Apple devices. So if you stick to apps from companies you know you can trust you’ll be just fine regardless of which phone you go with. That being said if you’re interested in an iPhone but want a bigger screen – wait a couple of months and you’ll have that option. Apple is about to release iPhones with bigger screens.
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New way of looking at a college degree... Best ROI of any investment class per year:
Bottom Line: The New York Federal Reserve released ROI information regarding college degrees vs. no college degrees, in a way in which it had never been disseminated previously. They took the average annual earnings (with a degree and with no degree), factored in the cost of the college for the average degree holder and projected them across the average length of one’s career. Here’s the result:
- The average annual ROI for a college degree over one’s career is 14-15%
To put that in perspective, if a college degree were an investment class, it would be the best investment class by a margin (the stock market is best at 9% average annual rates of return).
Toyota is about to release ground breaking fuel cell technology in Japan:
Bottom Line: Some people may be inclined to use words like evolutionary and revolutionary almost interchangeably. In today’s technological age it’s understandable but I take the term revolutionary very seriously. Very few advances will ever achieve the threshold of revolutionary.
In my view every automotive advancement since the consumer automobile was invented in the 1890’s have been evolutionary in nature. Until now. No joking… Toyota has created a hydrogen fuel vehicle that has passed crash testing and will be made available to consumers in Japan next year.
It a Prius that’s been equipped with hydrogen fuel cell capabilities. It’s price tag at the onset isn’t cheap. It’s set to sell at the equivalent of $70,000 (US) and will be made available in April of 2015. If next year’s launch in Japan goes as planed you can expect Toyota to bring the hydrogen fuel cell car to the US within a couple of years.
While I’ve been a big fan of renewable fuel options for automobiles I’ve never thought that plug-in electric cars were ever going to be the effective path forward for the automotive industry. We expect to be able to refuel in a few minutes – not hours. The hydrogen fuel cell tech is the best possible outcome. It’s eminently renewable. It doesn’t pollute (at all). In fuel cell form you’d be able to fuel up at equipped service stations as quickly as you fuel up with gas right now.
This truly could be the biggest development in automotive technology since the creation of the automobile itself…
A close look at the current state of Palm BeachCounty real-estate:
Bottom Line: All week we’ve heard about the national real-estate landscape. So how does Palm BeachCounty compare? Thanks to the Treu Group I have the latest information. Here are some highlights from May:
- Single family home sales: 11.4% higher year over year (vs. -5% nationally)
- Single family home prices: 6.9% higher year over year (vs. +5.1% nationally)
- Days on market: down 29% to an average of 56 days on market
So generally the news continued to be positive and it’s clear that PBC is still out performing the housing market nationally. That being said there could be some moderating of these numbers as we wade through summer. Why? Inventory on market jumped in May in PBC:
- Inventory increased by 23% year over year
- Months of inventory increased from 4.9 months to 6 months worth of inventory
Six month worth of inventory is parity between a buyers and sellers market. That’s not a bad thing by any means but it does indicate that we’re shifting from a seller’s market into a neutral housing market locally. I’ll keep you posted…
How much we spend on booze:
Bottom Line: So if you’re an adult who consumes alcohol how much do you think you spend on booze? You may be surprised:
- The average adult consumer of alcohol will spend $28 per week or more than $1400 per year on alcohol
So if you and your spouse are both average alcohol consumers you’ll spend nearly $3000 per year on alcohol alone. That’s pretty significant right? Now I’m the last person who will give you a hard time about this as I have a glass of wine with dinner most nights (and generally two on the weekend). That being said it’s easy for booze driven budget creep to occur.