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4 years ago

Moto X 'Skip' unlocking accessory now available for $20

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Unlock your phone via NFC with a tap on this wearable accessory.

Motorola has just put up an odd Moto X accessory for sale called the "Skip" which unlocks your Moto X when you take it out of your pocket. The "wearable accessory" clips onto your shirt or pants near where you keep your Moto X in your pocket, and unlocks the device via NFC when you swipe past it. Yup, that's all it does and Motorola is asking $20 for this accessory to boot.

A support document showing setup and troubleshooting information for the Skip indicates that it's simple to set up by tapping your Moto X to it once and following the settings prompts. But we're still unsure how this is any notable amount faster to unlock your phone than pulling it out and hitting the power button with your thumb. Presumably you'll have to hold the phone for some amount of time over the NFC antenna in the device to make sure it works.

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4 years ago

Chromecast app update aims to fix discoverability issues

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OK, folks. If you've got a Chromecast but have had issues getting it to connect to certain devices, it's time to update your Chromecast app. Google's put forth some new code that should fix some discoverability problems.

Looking through our ever-busy Chromecast forums, it looks like this should help out a few folks. Have at it.

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4 years ago

LG G2 will have wireless charging in Europe ... well, sort of

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Verizon wireless charging exclusive seems to stretch beyond U.S. borders.

It was a bit of a letdown to hear today that Verizon had locked up the exclusive on wireless charging with their own logo-laden LG G2, but luckily there's hope for the billions of people in this world not on Verizon. LG has confirmed with Pocket-Lint that the manufacturer will be making an accessory available to give wireless charging capabilities to the handset, at least in Europe.

Now this seems a little odd for Verizon to have a worldwide exclusive on wireless charging, but we have to at least give a small bit of credit to LG for making something else available. (Naturally, we would have preferred if LG didn't cave to such a crazy demand.) Unfortunately at this time LG was unwilling to confirm the pricing or release date of such accessory, even as the phone gets ready to go on sale next month.

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4 years ago

Google Translate adds Hindi and Thai handwriting input, camera input for four more languages

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Further expanding the methods of communication with a single app.

Android is an operating system that is truly global, and Google is expanding the capabilities of Google Translate today to reflect that by adding important new languages. First are two new languages that can be used for handwriting recognition, and those are Hindi and Thai. It's especially important for handwriting recognition for languages such as these because they have a non-Roman character set that is difficult to use on a standard keyboard layout.

Today's update is also expanding the capabilities of Google Translate's "camera input", which reads languages you capture from physical objects with your phone's camera, to Afrikaans, Greek, Hebrew and Serbian. With these new capabilities in Google Translate for six more languages, Google is adding to an ever-expanding list of foreign languages that can help people communicate whether they're traveling or hosting travelers themselves.

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4 years ago

Google and Microsoft fight over Youtube app, again

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Windows Phone Youtube app claimed to violate Google's terms of service, nonfunctional in the meantime.

Google and Microsoft haven't been the best of friends lately, and the latest incarnation of this broken relationship is Google shutting down the Youtube app on Windows Phone yet again. If you'll recall back to the first time the companies clashed over Youtube, Microsoft had pretty much done a one-off app after being frustrated with Google's lack of Windows Phone development.

Now after re-releasing an official app after collaboration with Google, Microsoft has seen the same fate. A statement by Google indicates that Microsoft is still breaching the terms of service for creating a Youtube app, even though Google was involved in the development:

"Microsoft has not made the browser upgrades necessary to enable a fully-featured YouTube experience, and has instead re-released a YouTube app that violates our Terms of Service," says a spokesperson. "It has been disabled. We value our broad developer community and therefore ask everyone to adhere to the same guidelines."

Microsoft, naturally, doesn't see things the same way. Posting to Microsoft's TechNet blog, David Howard seems to think that Google is taking an unfair look at Microsoft in order to focus on Youtube for Android and IOS. Together with the recent quarrels over Gmail and Google Maps, we're unfortunately in for a long road of fighting between Google and Microsoft.

Source: MicrosoftWPCentral

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4 years ago

GIF Chat launches on Android, offers looping video clips and text messaging

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Another way to show off your 6-second video skills.

The group messaging app space is full of great choices, but GIF Chat is trying to get in on the craze with its own set of features. Walking the line between apps like Snapchat which only do short video clips and fully-featured voice, video and text chat apps like Viber, GIF Chat offers group chatting with up to 6-second looping video as well as text chatting.

Given it's name, GIF Chat naturally focuses on the video aspect of the service, with plenty of features for recording and editing videos. Using either front or rear cameras, you can collect up to 6-seconds of video, select the playback speed and even set how many times it will loop — 1 to 10 times or never — before disappearing.

GIF Chat launched on iOS last week and is cross-platform compatible with the Android version, which is also a nice feature. The app is free and displays ads at the bottom of some pages from time to time, and there's no indication of whether or not there will be a paid, ad-free version. Ready to try another group messaging client? grab a download from the Play Store link above.

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4 years ago

In pictures: Huawei Ascend P6 vs. Apple iPhone 4S

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Is it borrowing designs, or just inspiration? Some of the similarities are surprising.

It's no secret that there are design similarities between the Huawei Ascend P6 and the iPhone, but how similar are they? Well naturally the screen sizes and operating systems differentiate them pretty well, but there are certainly many points where the likeness between the two is uncanny.

Particularly, you can see almost exact similarities with the metal banding around the sides, the camera and speaker grille at the top of the phones. The similarities go further with an iPhone 5, which is simply taller and thinner and therefore looks more like a typical 16:9 Android phone to begin with.

Stick with us after the break for a full gallery of the Huawei Ascend P6 with an iPhone 4S.

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4 years ago

'Dots' game comes to Google Play, Amazon Appstore

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Another great and simple puzzle game makes its way to Android.

Popular iOS game "Dots" is making the move to Android today, and its bringing with it a new game mode as well. Well-known and enjoyed for its simplicity, Dots has basic puzzle-style gameplay based on connecting dots with the swipe of a finger to build up bonuses and points. The standard gameplay gives you 60 seconds to connect as many dots and get the most points.

New to the game in its move to Android is a "Moves" mode, which gives you a limited set of moves rather than a limited amount of time. It's another way to think of the game that's a little more relaxed. The game is free in both Google Play at the link above, as well as the Amazon Appstore for Kindle Fire owners at the source link below.

Source: Dots (Amazon Appstore)

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4 years ago

The cloud isn't all silver linings – sometimes it rains - Talk Mobile

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Put everything in the cloud, they said. Sync your files, back up your phone, put it all online, they said. It'll be great, they said.

And then the cloud stopped working. It was temporary, but for a while, everything stopped. Your email didn't come for a few hours. Your music was out of reach. That file you desperately needed for your presentation only came up as a 404. The cloud was gone.

4 years ago

Where is Google Maps Street View available? A whole lot of places, with more to come

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Cars, backpacks, trolleys, snowmobiles and trikes are slowly mapping the world from a first person point of view.

We know Google has been hard at work mapping the entire world with a combination of different satellite footage, but how much of that area is also covered by first person Street View imagery? On its "About Street View" page, Google has published a map that pretty granularly shows off where it has collected Street View imagery, and the number of places currently mapped may be surprising.

The interactive map (which can be zoomed, but in only partially) shows blue shaded areas where someone has personally driven, rode or walked with Google's Street View equipment to provide high-res 360-degree pictures of the area. Most of the U.S., Canada, Europe, Australia, Korea and Japan are mapped, naturally, but so are more obscure ares like small island chains far into the ocean.

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4 years ago

This new Weather app from Yahoo! makes every day beautiful

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If you appreciate beautiful, full-bleed graphics in an app that performs as good as it looks, the all-new updated Yahoo! Weather app is one you'll want to have a look at. Checking the weather on our phones is one of those things nobody needs to do —getting up and looking outside would be good for anyone — but most of us do it. It's convenient, and lets us see what the skies and temperature are like in places where we're not. Maybe you're traveling and need to know whether to pack an umbrella or which jacket to take, or you're wanting to know the forecast of the place you're going. Or maybe you just like being able to check something as trivial as the weather through your expensive smartphone. We never judge.

There are a lot (as in a whole lot) of apps out there that show you the weather, but Yahoo! has found a way to stand out from the crowd. Using high-resolution pictures from Flickr —a company Yahoo! owns — that show the location and current conditions as a backdrop, the weather never looked this good. I've been playing with the update here for a couple hours, and I'll tell you that looking at the weather in Berlin is better when the background is a gorgeous picture of the Brandenburg Gate in the background. The same goes for a sunset picture of the National Mall in Washington, DC. Of course not all locations are going to be covered, so if you live somewhere out-of-the-way like, for example, Bunker Hill, West Virginia, you'll have a generic image.

The app is also really feature-rich. The settings cover everything from unit types (Celsius or Fahrenheit) to persistent notifications and alerts. You can add as many locations as you like, and of course your current location is always available. Add in things like 10-day forecasts, 24 hour forecast, the chance of precipitation, wind and pressure numbers, the moon phase, UV patterns, sunrise and sunset times, an interactive map and a set of widgets of all sizes and you've got the recipe for an app everyone will like. There's even a lock screen widget if your Android supports them.

The app is free, and if you're already using the Yahoo! Weather app you'll be getting an update notification soon. If you're not, and want to give it a try, grab it via the Google Play link above. We've got a whole slew of screenshots of the UI and settings after the break.

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4 years ago

HTC One now available on C Spire

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The HTC One is now available on C Spire. The regional carrier that covers a good portion of the Southeast is the latest carrier to offer one of our favorite phones to its customers. 

C Spire will sell the HTC One at the standard $199 price point with a new 2-year service agreement and will offer the phone in all retail stores, online as well as through its telesales group. The carrier has also said that it will be pre-installing a few apps, including Text CS and WiFiON. 

The more that the HTC One is available the better, so this is great news for C Spire customers who have been waiting for the phone. 

Source: C Spire HTC One

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4 years ago

Red HTC One launching exclusively on Sprint tomorrow with NextRadio

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If you're on Sprint and have been considering the HTC One but have not yet pulled the trigger, you will have another option starting tomorrow — "glamor red." The only options up until now have been silver and black (or gold, if you want to drop some serious cash.) The red HTC One is exclusive to Sprint customers in the U.S. and will be available for the same price of $199.99, with a 2-year agreement. 

What's more, Sprint is offering a "buy one, get one free" deal on the HTC One until Aug. 30.

Customers also get NextRadio access, which means the FM radio app will come pre-installed on your new HTC One. It's an app that allows you to browse radio stations, interact with those stations and purchase songs that you like. It differs from other apps because rather than using data, it goes through your phone's FM tuner, which means the battery usage isn't as great. 

Sprint customers, have you been waiting patiently for the red HTC One? And if you're not on Sprint, are you tempted by this color option?

More: The red HTC One in pictures

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4 years ago

LG G2 coming to Canada across most carriers

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Rogers, Bell, TELUS, SaskTel, WIND, and Videotron will all have the G2 available this fall. 

Following on announcements for the UK and US, Canadian carriers have chimed in with their plans for the upcoming LG G2. The big guys like Rogers, Bell, and TELUS are all going to get it, but you'll also see the LG G2 available on regional providers like WIND, SaskTel, and Videotron. There's no information on specific dates or prices, but the end of September seems to be a likely launch window. Only TELUS has a landing page in their store right now, but no doubt the others will be showing up soon.

For those unfamiliar, the LG G2 is turning a lot of heads with its super-slim bezel, high-brightness display, and a unique hardware button placement. If you're thinking of getting one, be sure to check out our hands-on video from the launch event last week. Any Canadians in the house thinking of snagging the G2 this fall?

Source: LG Canada

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4 years ago

Verizon LG G2 comes with wireless charging in addition to logos

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Wireless charging feature 'exclusive,' according to VZW pre-registration ​page

Looks like a preponderance of carrier logos won't be the only unique thing about Verizon Wireless' LG G2. According to the operator's pre-registration page, it'll include "exclusive wireless charging" in addition to all that juicy Verizon branding. Presumably this means if you pick up a G2 on AT&T, T-Mobile or Sprint you'll have to charge with a microUSB cable like a Neanderthal.

There's no information on which wireless standard will be used on the Verizon G2, but the last few LG phones to support this feature (the Optimus G, Nexus 4 and certain versions of the G Pro) have all used the Qi standard.

It's also not the first time Verizon has nabbed exclusive wireless charging on a major handset — last year it scooped the feature for its HTC 8X, leaving AT&T 8X owners charging the old-fashioned way.

Source: Verizon; via: Engadget

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