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20 hours ago

Plex's forums hacked, user data being held ransom

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Streaming service Plex's forums have been hacked, and the hacker is holding the data ransom in exchange for Bitcoin. Plex has announced that the hacker was able to gain access to IP addresses, email addresses, hashed and salted passwords as well as private message. Payment information is not stored on Plex's servers, so that information is still secure.

The streaming service refused to pay the ransom, and has reset the passwords of all affected users. Plex uses a SSO (single sign-on) authentication, so if the hacker were to reverse-engineer the hashed passwords, he or she would be able to gain access to a user's Plex.tv account as well.

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23 hours ago

Microsoft drops patent suit against Kyocera over technologies in its Android phones

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Microsoft announced today that it has struck a deal with Kyocera to expand their patent licensing agreement, putting an end to a patent infringement suit that Microsoft brought against Kyocera earlier this year over technologies used in its Android phones.

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1 day ago

New in the Android Central app: Samsung Multi Window support, and bug fixes!

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Coming soon to an Android phone or tablet near you — it's the latest version of the Android Central app! In this latest release we're introducing a new feature, Multi Window support for Samsung devices, that should help you get all the news and information you want from Android Central while also keeping up with other things on your devices.

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1 day ago

The Nexus 9 is finally a tablet you should buy

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Nexus 9

More than eight months after we first got our hands on the HTC-manufactured Nexus 9 tablet, we're finally ready to officially recommend it as an Android tablet that's worth buying.

We've reviewed a lot of devices here. More phones than I can remember. A whole bunch of tablets. But things got a little weird in the fall of 2014 with the release of the Motorola Nexus 6 and the Nexus 9 tablet. And the source of that weirdness was Android 5.x Lollipop.

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1 day ago

Marcelo Claure's comments to John Legere about Jump OnDemand aren't wrong

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Claure and Legere

John Legere has made quite the name for himself by speaking his mind and using PG-13 language in places you don't usually see C-level executive for major companies doing so. He routinely pokes at the competition on Twitter, frequently calling out other mobile carrier CEOs and mocking decisions they've made recently. It's usually fairly entertaining, especially when it's clear one of these companies is rolling out a lamer version of a plan Legere's team has just finished deploying.

As you'd expect, the other CEOs rarely respond — lets be honest, some of them probably don't actually use their own Twitter accounts — but last night that changed. Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure — whose time would be better spent not screwing people out of video streaming — fired back at Legere in an unfortunately childish way, but in doing so made a valid point about T-Mobile's new Jump On Demand service.

John Legere

If you listen to our podcast, you've heard some words already on the "amped" version of the Jump program. T-Mobile started out with an upgrade path worthy of the Uncarrier hashtag and turned it into a leasing program in a continued effort to strip away the things that made the original program so impressive. You gain the ability to upgrade three times a year, but you lose the included Premium Handset Protection and Lookout Premium that were included in the previous version. You also never truly own your phone, which means if you downgrade your service plan out of the list of qualifying T-Mobile plans or you decide to cancel altogether you have to either return the phone and pay the remaining payments for the hardware. There are also additional costs associated with having a credit score T-Mobile deems unacceptable, which have to be paid up front as a down payment on the device you're leasing.

While there have been some great changes through this movement, Jump On Demand is just about as far from Uncarrier as you can get.

Perhaps most important of all is the point Claure made on Twitter. The current advertising for Jump puts the iPhone in the spotlight for $15/month with an eligible trade-in. What isn't mentioned anywhere is the increase in cost when you Jump from one device to another. If you jump from an iPhone 6 to a shiny new Nexus this fall, for example, that $15/month goes away and will actually be closer to $27/month. While it's true you're still paying less than you would if you bought a phone outright on this plan, you still have to pay the balance if you want to own the phone and you still need to pay the extra $8/month to get the protection plan. Remember, if you take a broken phone to them and try to Jump, you'll be sent away. A single phone is now costing you $35/month after your first Jump.

Jump On Demand

If you've got great credit, zero interest in owning your hardware, and really love T-Mobile's service, Jump On Demand still isn't a great idea. When you compare Jump prices after this promo trade-in period to the regular monthly Equipment Installment Plan, you see there's not a lot of difference there. T-Mobile started the Uncarrier movement by shouting from the rooftops about fixing a broken, stupid industry. While there have been some great changes through this movement, Jump On Demand is just about as far from Uncarrier as you can get. What's worse, it's being carefully marketed as a cure-all to folks with uncontrollable gadget lust, when in fact it's a different color collar to tether you to your carrier.

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1 day ago

Free App of the Week in Google Play: Thomas's Musical Day For Percy

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Google has been making a different app free each week in its Family section of Google Play, and this week's free app is Thomas's Musical Day For Percy. The app, which is normally $4.99, is free from July 2 through July 9.

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1 day ago

Best heavy duty cases for LG G4

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Best heavy duty cases for LG G4

The best rugged cases for the LG G4 must withstand the rigors of your daily environment — inside or out.

Not every case out there can hold up to the extremes of a busy lifestyle, where drops are commonplace and expected throughout your daily routine. Like it or not, heavy duty cases are important for those of us who require extra layers, screen covers, and sturdy belt clip holsters to get our LG G4 through to the next day.

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1 day ago

Getting to know Nest Cam

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Nest Cam

Nest has now fully absorbed Dropcam and graduated its core products and services into the Nest ecosystem, and the result is Nest Cam and Nest Aware. If you've ever seen or used Dropcam services, you should feel right at home with this upgraded piece of technology. As connected cameras go, there's a lot to explore an appreciate with Nest Cam, and the Nest Aware software that powers the experience is well worth taking a look at as well.

With that in mind, lets wander through this updated Nest Cam experience and see what is happening behind all the buttons.

For the uninitiated, Nest Cam is a web-enabled security camera with a powerful app and web interface to communicate with the camera from wherever you are. The camera can be a private security system for yourself, or a public camera that can be shared with the world. It has a speaker baked into the camera casing, so you can speak through your web or app interface and whoever is on the other end — kids, pets, someone breaking into your house and stealing your laptop — can hear you. Unlike its predecessors, Nest Cam is a 1080p camera with a UI that supports optical zoom and a night-vision mode that will kick in automatically if you tell it to. It's also incredibly easy to set up and use. As indoor security cameras go — this thing isn't waterproof, so don't try to stick it outside — it's one of the better overall experiences out there.

Powering the other features in the Nest Cam lineup is Nest Aware, which comes with a pair of monthly ($10 for 10 days of video history, or $30 for 30 days) or yearly ($100 or $300) subscription options depending on your needs. Nest Aware adds computer vision to Nest Cam, using cloud computing to sharpen and enhance the image you are seeing, especially when you use the app to zoom in on something in the room you are monitoring. The enhance button on zoom shows almost immediate results, and can be incredibly useful for things like facial recognition should the worst happen. Nest Aware also allows you to set custom zones in the room you are monitoring, like a door frame or a window, and the Nest app will notify you if there's any motion in those zones. When motion is detected, the app will create a special icon in the video timeline, so you can instantly tap and see what was happening at that time.

Nest Aware's services also come with aforementioned online storage options, allowing the camera to store either 7 or 30 days of video in the Nest app. Through this, users are able to create and export video clips of things they caught in the recording. The app lets you export up to an hour of enhanced recorded video at a time, but also lets you create timelapses from your video feed. These clips are stored on the Nest service until you decide to download or share them, and several social networking hooks are baked in to the service.

Nest Zone Aware

There's a lot to like about Nest Cam, just like there was a lot to like about its predecessors. The subscription options that power most of the good stuff is a little off-putting for a lot of users, but it's also pretty useful. Ultimately it's the cost of computer vision and cloud computing, which are critical components in making these feature work as seamlessly as they do. The folks at Nest have a long history of adding features year round, however, so whether you're already impressed with the service or on the fence it's clear there's always going to be something new around the corner.

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1 day ago

Pelican Protector and Voyager cases for the Galaxy S6 and S6 edge

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Pelican Protector and Voyager cases for the Galaxy S6 and S6 edge

Most people need basic phone protection, then there are people who need Pelican cases.

The Pelican name is associated with protecting valuables — particularly electronics and camera gear — against basically anything you can think of, and its Protector and Voyager phone cases bring that idea down to your Galaxy S6. The two cases each offer something different, but are both a step above any "average" cheap case you can throw on your phone.

Extra protection, a specialized look and a name that you can trust is what you get with Pelican cases — here's what they look like for the Galaxy S6 and S6 edge.

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1 day ago

ARCHOS announces the 50d Helium, a 5-inch device availble in July for £99

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ARCHOS has announced its latest device, the 50d Helium, which is set to release later this month and carry a price tag of £99.99. This 5-inch Android 5.1 smartphone features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 with 1GB of RAM and 8GB of storage.

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1 day ago

AT&T pushes out small update for the Samsung Galaxy S5

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AT&T is currently pushing out an update for the Samsung Galaxy S5, which bumps the device from version OC4 to OF2. Unfortunately, AT&T has not provided a list of changes that are made in this update, but we do know that it is still based on Android 5.0.

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1 day ago

Chevrolet is adding Active Phone Cooling to some future models to keep your phone from overheating

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Chevrolet is adding a new system to its upcoming 2016 Impala and Malibu lines called Active Phone Cooling. This system will come with vehicles that are equipped with wireless charging, in an effort to ensure that phones stay cool and don't overheat.

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1 day ago

Subway Surfers runs its way to Rio de Janeiro

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The popular free-to-play endless runner game Subway Surfers keeps getting new content. The latest update brings Jake and his crew to the party city of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil:

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1 day ago

Swappa's phone valuation experience now exists in app form

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There are plenty of ways to sell your phone when you decide you're ready to move on to something new, and since some of us experience to urge to swap phones a whole lot more often than others there's usually some research needed to determine the best price to list your hardware. Researching this kind of thing can often be a lot of work, since listings usually disappear as soon as the transaction is complete, and in many sites there are private conversations that can have a significant effect on the final price tag.

The folks at Swappa have been doing this whole third-party smartphone and tablet sales thing for a while now, and one of the best tools on their website is the record of what devices have sold for in the past. That experience now exists in app form, so you can quickly see what your phone or tablet would be worth when considering selling it. The app is called Swappa Price, and as the name suggests it's all about letting you know what other devices have sold for on Swappa. Like the Swappa site, you can break things down by carrier, unlocked, and if you've decided you're interested in buying or selling based on that information you can tap either of the big friendly buttons in the search results and be taken to the Swappa site.

It's fairly simple stuff, but for folks who are constantly buying and selling phones and tablets in the search of something new this app can reduce a lot of the research time. Enjoy!

Download: Swappa Price (free)

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1 day ago

Anki Overdrive fuses together track racing and video games, available September 20

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Anki has announced that Overdrive will start shipping in the US, UK, Germany and Canada on September 20. The battle-racing game will commence shipping to retailers on the day, blending together robotic racing and video games. You'll be able to control physical supercars through the power of mobile devices and compete against friends and family, or even AI commanders.

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