Jelly Bean - Featured Articles

Apple and Google settle with employees over antitrust no-hire case

Apple and Google settle with employees over antitrust no-hire case

The giants of Silicon Valley have bowed to their employees and settled an antitrust case brought against them over back-room deals to not hire from each other. The settlement, first reported by Reuters, brings to an end a legal battle that could have cost Apple, Google, Intel, and Adobe billions...
Hulu's app for Android now controls Hulu on your Xbox One and PlayStation

Hulu's app for Android now controls Hulu on your Xbox One and PlayStation

Building on its Chromecast remote control support, Hulu Plus will now let you control video playback on your Xbox One, PS3 or PS4 from your Android device. Once your Hulu Plus app is updated on your console of choice, you'll notice that it will show up under the "cast" button menu just like a...
Using the Motion Launch gestures on the HTC One M8

Using the Motion Launch gestures on the HTC One M8

By popular request from a few folks in the office, here's a quick look at how the Motion Launch gestures work on the HTC One M8. You'll see some helpful pop-ups for this when you first use the phone. If you want to turn the gestures off, go to Settings>Display and gestures>Motion Launch...
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A brand new version of HD Widgets is on the way, and if you're interested in signing up for a beta group you can have it a week earlier than everyone else. The fourth iteration of HD Widgets is the first major update to the app in a year, and it's bringing a new interface for customizing your widgets as well as new styles and options for what goes on your home screen.

HD Widgets has over one million users already, and is trusting those who sign up for its beta program with an early look so that it can work out the last-minute bugs in the app before a wide release on May 1st. If you're the customizable widget type and want to take an early look, head to the source link below.

Source: HD Widgets Beta

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We've already seen how doubleTwist makes it easy to listen to your music and watch video over AirPlay devices from your Android phone or tablet. Today the company has decided to release an update that allows rooted users to stream Google Play Music to AirPlay devices as well. They also wrote a blog post to tell us how they are making it work.

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AT&T

AT&T reported its first quarter 2014 results, showing impressive growth in revenues, handset sales and customer acquisition for the quarter. While AT&T operates businesses outside of its wireless division, we're going to focus on this portion. For the quarter, AT&T posted $17.9 billion in revenue including handset sales, up 7 percent year-over-year, leading to $5.1 billion in operating income, up 8.1 percent.

On the customer side, AT&T added 625,000 postpaid customers, its largest first quarter gain in five years. It also added 693,000 "connected devices," but saw prepaid customers dip overall in the quarter mostly due to the loss of over 200,000 reseller subscribers. Of those additions, 311,000 were for postpaid smartphones, while 313,000 were tablets.

AT&T sold 5.8 million smartphones in total for the quarter, making up 92 percent of all postpaid phone sales — which first quarter record. This leads to 78 percent of AT&T's postpaid customers now using smartphones, up from 74 percent this time last year. In terms of connectivity, 57 percent of AT&T's postpaid smartphone subscribers have an LTE-capable device.

One interesting note on the growth was that AT&T says 40 percent of the gross smartphone additions and upgrades came by way of its AT&T Next device installment plan, up from just 15 percent last quarter. Additionally, about 45 percent of all postpaid subscribers are now on a Mobile Share plan, with a full 81 percent now being on some form of usage-based billing (i.e. not unlimited) plan.

Source: AT&T

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Previous contractual obligations may see Google getting involved in the current patent lawsuit trial between Samsung and Apple. According to testimony by a Google lawyer today, the contract associated with bringing Google apps to Samsung's devices has Google pick up some of the defense associated with patent lawsuits that go against Samsung. Although exact terms of the licensing agreement between the companies aren't known, indications are that at least some of Apple's complaints against Samsung have enough to do with Google's software that it has to be involved with the court case.

On Samsung's side, statements from its representatives indicate that the company isn't entirely sure whether or not Samsung will have to call in assistance from Google in defense of the case. Throughout the course of this case Samsung has called several Google employees to testify in its defense, including lead Android engineers, according to Recode. Samsung still denies that any of its products infringe on the patents in question in the case.

Source: Recode

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Link Bubble is an awesome app that helps you surf the web better. In a nutshell, it can preload links from other applications so you aren't waiting for things to load in the foreground. We went over it all here, be sure to have a look if you're not familiar.

Today's update makes a great app even better.

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Surround shot

Get immersed in Photo Spheres

We love Photo Spheres. They're fairly easy to take, and with the right subject and a little careful planning they can be spectacular. And now that even more phones can take them — thanks to OEM solutions and the Google Camera app — there are even more people taking and sharing them.

A great place to check them all out is the Google + Photo Sphere community. You'll find pictures from amateur and pro photographers, and spend hours looking at the images. As a bonus, there's a great Tips & Tricks section to get you on the way to being a contributor.

So grab your new phone, or your old phone with a new app, and hit the Photo Sphere community up. If you like to take pictures, we promise you'll be glad you did.

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Welp, dedicated Droid DNA owners, here it comes. Quite possibly the last major update you'll get for the Verizon Droid DNA. Android 4.4.2 and Sense 5.5 are incoming and should be available starting April 24. (That's this Thursday.) Also on board is Sense 5.5. Not a bad update for an aging phone. Enjoy, folks.

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These are supposedly screenshots from the upcoming LG G3, showing a flat and bright user interface. Procured by Digital Trends, we also can see a new element they're calling LG's "concierge" that suggests things like an umbrella when rain is in the forecast. The images themselves were originally 2,560 x 1,440, which would seem to also confirm the QHD display rumored to be coming with the G3.

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Following up on the big jump from XE12 to XE16 last week that brought Google Glass up to running KitKat, a small bugfix update to XE16.1 is now hitting the wearable. We have no official word on what the update brings, but given the relative instability we've noticed on Glass since the XE16 update we're not surprised that a quick point released bugfix update was required. As far as user-facing changes go we don't immediately notice anything, so let's hope there are some good under-the-hood changes being made.

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Withings has announced a new health band called Pulse O2. It does all of the usual stuff, like monitor steps, heart rate, elevation, distance traveled, sleep habits, and estimates calories burned, but the really cool feature here is the ability to monitor the oxygen level in your blood. That information is estimated from the infrared heart rate monitor, then beamed to your phone through a companion app. The device itself can be mounted in a wrist strap, a clip, or carried around separately.

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Nest Thermostat

You can now buy a Nest Thermostat through Google Play. Price is the same as other retail outlets — $249 — and it'll ship in 1 to 2 business days, Google says. And for every thermostat sold today, Google will plant a tree. Because Earth Day. It's also available in the UK for £179.

The Nest Thermostat is a "learning" device that connects to the Internet (and other Nest products). It's got a 1.75-inch display, controlled by a metal ring on the outside of the thermostat. Nest learns your temperature preferences, when you're home or away, and is aware of the outside weather, and adjusts itself accordingly. It's not a cheap device, for sure, but promises to pay for itself in savings.

Not available still is Nest Protect, which was pulled from market because of software issues with the combination smoke/carbon monoxide detector.

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HTC One M8 FIXIT

The HTC One M8 is a great phone, but it's not perfect. And we, in our infinite wisdom, have some ideas.

There's no such thing as a perfect phone. You can justify this, defend that. Some flaws are subjective, others are like a bad scab in an unfortunate place, unable to be ignored. Fortunately, today's high-end phones are more good than bad. But, no, they're not perfect. And for as much as we love the HTC One M8 — and make no mistake, it's right up there with anything else we'll recommend this year — we've got some ideas about how HTC could "fix" its flagship device for 2014.

If you've yet to come across the phone — we're sure these people exist somewhere — here's the rub: The HTC One M8 continues the design trend we first saw 2013's HTC One M7. That is, aluminum unibody design with some sweeping curves. Large, 5-inch, 1080p display. It's powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor with 2GB of RAM and is running Android 4.4.2 with HTC's Sense 6 user interface atop it. It's got a relatively low resolution "Ultrapixel" camera — just 4 megapixels — but you get a bunch of cool features to play with after you've taken the shot.

And with that, here's how we'd "fix" the HTC One M8.

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The L90 is coming to T-Mobile on April 30, and the L70 is on MetroPCS now

As expected, MetroPCS and T-Mobile has taken the wraps off two affordable LG handsets: the Optimus L90 and the Optimus L70. We had an inkling that we’d be seeing these two hitting store shelves soon. The L90 will be available on T-Mobile starting April 30 for free with $9.95 monthly installments, while the L70 is on MetroPCS right now for a scant $49.

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American carriers are making progress in being more open and customer-friendly — particularly T-Mobile — but Sprint is preparing to take a significant step forward by ensuring that the devices they sell to customers are able to be SIM unlocked. Eventually. In 2015. In an FAQ on Sprint's unlocking policy, the company states that they are "working to ensure that all devices developed and launched on or after February 11, 2015 are capable of being unlocked domestically."

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Samsung Galaxy S5 remote

The Samsung Galaxy S5 features an infrared emitter at the top of the phone which can control your TV and other home electronics. The app, Smart Remote, requires a little bit of setup but is ultimately very useful in reducing the number of controllers you need to keep around in your living room, not to mention keeping track of what’s on at any given time.

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A quick heads up for you folks running the Moto X on Republic Wireless — it looks like your Android 4.4.2 update is available as of today. Folks on Republics' forums are noting the update, which includes a new dialer and updated Google Hangouts (to say nothing of the latest update to Hangouts, we suppose). Head into your system settings and take a look.

Source: Republic Wireless; Thanks, Winston!

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Because swiping is too simple and gestures have already come and gone, Amazon's upcoming (but still unannounced) smartphone will rely heavily on tilt features to interact with its user interface, according to BGR. No new images of the UI were shown, but BGR references a number of use cases — and that traditional menu buttons aren't even a part of apps. This ... should be interesting.

Source: BGR

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One more little nugget out LG's new G Watch promo page, from which we got our first look at the champagne gold and white version.

It looks like you'll be charging it through some sort of dock, judging by the connector we see on the back of the watch. LG also reiterates that it'll be water-resistant (no surprise there) and that the face will be "always on," never mind that you don't actually see anything on the face in most of LG's pictures. (Hey, Android Wear's still not final or anything.)

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Cruzerlite Bugdroid Circuit Case for Samsung Galaxy S5

How can you not love the Cruzerlite Bugdroid Circuit Case for the Samsung Galaxy S5? Take one part simple TPU case — great for taking the brunt of the occasional bump and fall, as well as standing between your phone and anything that's trying to scratch it — and one part awesome Bugdroid graphics, and that's what you've got here. Just simple, easy protection for your Galaxy S5.

There's not much more to it than that. There are cutouts for all the places you need access to — the camera and heart-rate sensor, speaker, buttons, microphones and the like. You get a little bit of extra grip thanks to the fit and finish of the case. It's easy to put on, but not so easy that you have to worry about it falling off or anything.

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Rumors have been swirling for some time now that Samsung would release a high-powered version of the Samsung Galaxy S5 with a super-dense screen and presumably high-powered processor to power it — and now we're getting our first form of confirmation (albeit not official from Samsung) on the device. The "Galaxy S5 Prime", we called it. These rumors began surfacing long before the Galaxy S5 announced, primarily that we would see a phone with an absurd 1440x2560 "QHD". Today we've got some new details care of SamMobile about where Samsung's going with this mythical device.

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