5 days ago

Xiaomi may launch its smartwatch along with a new mid-range phone on March 31


The Chinese handset manufacturer has announced that it will launch new products on March 31 to commemorate its five-year anniversary.

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6 days ago

YouTube to reportedly take on Twitch with game streaming push later this year


Google is reportedly planning a reinvigorated push for its live streaming platform that will go live later this year and focus on game streaming and esports.

Called YouTube Live, the service would go up against popular streaming service Twitch, which has already amassed the lion's share of the game streaming market.

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6 days ago

When to use HDR for photos on your Android

HDR camera interface

Shooting in HDR isn't a cure-all solution, but it can definitely make up for shortcomings in your camera.

It's clear to see smartphone cameras have come a long way in just a couple of years, but what you may not realize is that a lot of the advancement can be attributed to software. When dealing with small camera sensors and lenses, like those on your Android, it takes finely-tuned processing to get a great-looking image from the data collected. It's true for casual snapshots in auto mode, but it's particularly true for HDR photography.

While HDR can't fix every problem with taking photos on your Android phone, it can certainly help your little camera produce appealing images that you'll really want to show off. HDR isn't a silver bullet, though — it really needs to be used in moderation for the best results. Let us show you when to flip the switch to HDR and when to go natural.

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6 days ago

This week's sidebar poll: Which eBook app do you use most?

Reading is for more than beaches and parks now; you can read anywhere you bring your Android.

Reading, as they say, is fundamental, and reading has never been easier to do.

Thanks to eBook readers, apps, and scores of eBook collections — free or paid — you can have a whole library in your pocket anywhere in the world. And while you could be spending your time on your smartphone or tablet buying and playing your way through another conquest on Clash of Clans or zipping around reddit or Twitter looking for funny cat pictures, reading books on your smartphone is often overlooked endeavor that you may want to consider picking back up. And as we dive into Reading on Android this week, we want to see what reading app our readers are using to read their ebooks electronically.

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6 days ago

Google's reportedly working on a way to pay bills from inside Gmail


Google may be working on a new service, code-named "Pony Express", that could allow Gmail users in the future to both receive and pay online bills directly from the email service.

The report comes from leaked documents that were first reported by Re/code. They show how Gmail "Pony Express" users will first have to provide personal information to a third party that then confirms their identity.

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6 days ago

The joys of reading on Android

books on Android

Smartphones and tablets have become the default browsing and quick-read device for many people, but diving into entire books is often another matter entirely.

Much in the same way the best camera is the one you have with you at all times, if you're a constant reader the thing you're most likely to do all of your reading on is whatever you have with you at all times. This isn't universally true, which is why Kindles are still crazy popular and bookstores still exist, but it's quite common to find someone on their lunch break at work or in a car waiting to pick up kids reading entire books on a smartphone. It shouldn't be too surprising nowadays, especially with the incredibly high resolution displays and wealth of bookstores and reading apps in the Google Play Store today.

In fact, with so many options out there it may not be all that easy to choose a service that best suits your needs, let alone even be aware of what options are out there for you to take advantage of. With that in mind, we're going to take a look at all of the reading options for Android and take a quick tour through the features that make these apps and services special.

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6 days ago

Trippy running game 'Fotonica' sprints onto Android


If you're craving some trippy vector-styled running action, you may want to check out Fotonica which which just made the jump from iOS to Android.

Fotonica tasks you with running and jumping your way through a world of colorful, vector-style graphics at crazy speeds.

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6 days ago

Action Launcher's massive update adds awesome new live wallpaper API


Action Launcher has been updated to version 3.3, bringing new features and tons of fixes along with it.

The extremely popular launcher replacement, Action Launcher, has received an update that brings along new features while fixing some existing bugs. One of the big new features here is shortcut and gesture support. Gestures can be set for various taps on the home button or an empty space on the screen, along with vertical and horizontal swipe configurations as well. With this you can set it so you can triple tap your home button to bring up the camera, or swipe up to access Google Search.

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6 days ago

The ultimate guide to Google+

Google+ is a vast platform that most don't quite fully understand the value of.

This is everything you need to know about Google+, in one handy guide.

Google+ is the social backbone of the Google platform and a pretty decent social network for the millions of users who inhabit it. Thanks to its ties to Hangouts, Google+ can also become your own personal podcast, meeting space, or impromptu concert. Google+ Photos's freedoms and features have attracted photographers from around the world, and its simple editing tools and ability to share beautiful, full-size photos both with your friends and with the world have made it one of the better photo services out there today.

Even if you're not looking for a new social network, that little red logo for Google+ does a lot of things for you. You use it to log into websites without filling out the same 20 questions every time you want to comment on a blog. It unifies your experience across the Google platform, from commenting on YouTube videos to leaving a bad review on the Play Store or Google Maps to bringing in results from your circles whenever you do a Google web search.

And here's how to get the most out of it.

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6 days ago

How cases will affect wireless charging and Samsung Pay on the Galaxy S6


Samsung's wireless everything strategy doesn't seem to have a downside yet, but it's still early.

There are a lot of reasons to be excited about the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 edge. The curved display on the edge and overall improved design with Samsung' latest Galaxy generation takes this brand to new heights, but more than that there's an opportunity to be truly wireless with this phone. The dual Qi/PMA charging solution baked into the back and Samsung's integrated payment solution are the closest thing to being able to comfortably leave the house with just your phone that we've seen yet. As we've seen in the forums this week, that wireless freedom raises some natural questions regarding accessories. Specifically, if you've got a thick case on your Galaxy S6 or Galaxy S6 edge, will wireless charging or Samsung Pay even be an option.

The short answer is no, but as is often the case when things like wireless charging and digital payments are involved it's a little more complicated than that.

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6 days ago

Top 5 accessories for HTC One M9


It's time to start considering what HTC One M9 accessories will best suit you and your lifestyle.

Pairing your HTC One M9 with accessories that enhance your overall experience is important in more ways than one. You never want to be restricted by battery life, storage space or constantly worry about dropping your device. We get that.

Whether it's a case, backup battery or quick charger — we're here to guide your decision in the right direction. This brief list of our top accessories for the HTC One M9 will bring you up to speed on what's available and what's popular. Jump past the break to get started.

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6 days ago

Facebook's 'On This Day' lets you take a nostalgia-filled trip to the past


Facebook announced a new feature for the social platform called "On This Day" that let's users take a nostalgic trip down memory lane.

The feature works much like the Timehop posts you've no doubt seen on your Facebook news feed, surfacing things that you either posted or were tagged in from a specific date in the past.

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6 days ago

Owner of Three UK will purchase O2 for £10.25 billion


Three UK owner Hutchison Whampoa has agreed to purchase O2 UK from Telefónica for £10.25 billion.

Talks between Hutchison Whampoa and Telefonica began in January of this year.

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6 days ago

Lollipop update for Samsung Galaxy Note 3 on AT&T starts rolling out


Samsung Galaxy Note 3 owners will be happy to know AT&T has pushed out the Lollipop update.

Following the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 earlier today, the Galaxy Note 3 on AT&T has also begun receiving its Lollipop update. The update, which is just over 1GB in size, will bring the phone up to Android 5.0.

Build number LRX21V.N900AUCUE0C1 has only just started rolling out, so you may not see the update notification just yet. Over the next few days the update should hit your phone, but if you want to check for an update now you can easily. To check for an update, open your devices settings menu go to the 'General' tab, then scroll to system update and tap on update now.

Discuss the AT&T Samsung Galaxy Note 3 update in the forums

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6 days ago

Futurology 1.1: Smaller, higher-capacity batteries are closer than ever before


Recent advancements in Lithium Sulfur and Lithium metal anodes pave the way for smaller, safer batteries with higher capacities.

Back at the start of the year in our Smartphone Futurology series, we discussed the technology behind the battery in smartphones and what's to come in the future. This article is a quick update to that piece, looking at some of the recent developments in batteries based on Lithium chemistry — like the ones powering the vast majority of smartphones.

We'll take a closer look at what reduces your phone's battery life over time, and how high-capacity technologies like Lithium Sulfur batteries and Lithium metal anodes are closer than ever to becoming practical. Join us after the break.

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