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4 years ago

Google Offers receives a facelift in latest update

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Cleaner, faster interface that's easier to navigate

Google's coupon and deals app, Google Offers, is getting a nice update today to modernize and improve the interface throughout the app. The new main screen of the app is separated into three tabs — Browse, Featured and My Offers — that can be navigated between simply with a slide. Each tab is scrollable, and the Featured tab will of course have the most content. Scroll down to the bottom and you can switch between offers displayed in your own location or a different city.

The new interface continues into the individual offers, which follow more of the modern "cards" UI that Google has been putting into many of its apps today. The offers are still information-rich, with details on the store, the coupon, and where the nearest store that accepts the coupon is. The latest update also lets you redeem offers without a network connection — something we're suprirsed wasn't included before.

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4 years ago

Riptide GP2 update splashes its way into Google Play

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New vehicles, female riders and a new game mode round out a very nice update

Vector Unit has sent the big update for Riptide GP2 that players have been waiting for, bringing a new multi-player game mode, a new high-end hydro-jet, female riders and some touch interface changes. They've been teasing the new features on their Google+ page, and the sizable fan base (including yours truly) has been looking forward to the changes.

The new Scorpion looks pretty awesome, the long-time-coming female character avatar looks like you would expect any female player in an action game to look (for better or worse) and the interface changes — including a new method for manual acceleration — are welcome. But the big news is the new VR Challenge game mode, where you can challenge your friends on 14 different tracks to see who gets the best time.

I've long been a fan of the Riptide GP series, and this update looks like a real winner so far. Grab it from the Google Play link above.

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4 years ago

Aviate isn't 'spying' on anyone, it's just being sloppy with your data

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Storing your location and installed apps in plain text is at issue here, not collecting that data in the first place

A lot of fuss is being made about the Aviate launcher the past couple days, with things hitting a fever pitch today. Besides the endless requests for invite codes on every social media site known to modern man, it's come to light that the launcher is sharing the data it collects on you with the world. Sort of.

Let's back up a tad. Aviate is a launcher that reconfigures itself — the apps it thinks you need to see right this second — depending on where you are. It's been in private beta for a while, and opened up to more users this week.

The to-do is that your location and list of installed apps are available via a publicly accessible API — but only if you know your unique device identifier. That's not good, but it's not necessarily the end of the world, either.

The good news is that Aviate has said this is something they are fixing, and have made it a top priority. (Update: Looks like the web access has been killed, as promised.) In the meantime, here's what you need to know if you're going to use the app.

Source: +Arvid Gerstmann (1), (2)

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4 years ago

Announcing the 'Weekly Photo Contest: Panorama' winner!

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A whole lot of beautiful scenery was on display this week

Another weekly photo contest has come to a close, and after seven days of entries we saw an awesome amount of turnout for this one. The prompt this week was "panorama," which opens up the topic structure again and gave everyone a chance to explore a way of taking pictures that is outside of the norm.

After going through nearly 300 entries across 25 pages in our forums, we had to bring it down to just one winner this week. We saw a lot of great entries this week, but we think we found one that hit the spot just right. Hang around after the break and see who was picked as the winner this week.

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4 years ago

T-Mobile announces the Samsung Galaxy Light

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Alcatel OneTouch Evolve also launches today

T-Mobile US has announced plans to launch the Samsung Galaxy Light, a new entry-level 4G LTE handset. Looking like a cross between a Galaxy S3 Mini and Galaxy S4 Mini, the Galaxy Light packs a 4-inch WVGA display, a quad-core 1.4GHz processor and 1GB of RAM, and runs Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean. There's 8GB of internal storage, expandable via microSD card, and the phone ships with a 1800mAh battery and a 5-megapixel camera.

So nothing much to write home about, but T-Mo should be targeting a low price point for the device when it launches at some undisclosed point in the future.

Meanwhile today sees the launch of Alcatel's affordable OneTouch Evolve on T-Mobile — yours for $28 down, with 24 monthly payments of $3.

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4 years ago

How to turn off BlinkFeed in Sense 5.5

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The option to turn off BlinkFeed is good to have — but you'll be missing out on a great feature

One of the more radical changes HTC brought in its Sense 5 user interface was the addition of BlinkFeed, a somewhat customizable news reader built into your home screens. In fact, it was meant to serve as your home screen, showing you the latest from your favorite news sources, Facebook and Twitter. 

And as you'd expect, BlinkFeed was polarizing. New features can be hard to sell, especially when it comes to forcing them onto a home screen — and doubly so when there's no way to turn them off. Sure, you could just install a new launcher — or just ignore BlinkFeed in the first place — but that wasn't really the point for many.

But starting in Sense 5.5, which debuts on the new HTC One Max, you'll be able to easily turn off the BlinkFeed pane.

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4 years ago

EE announces Pay As You Go LTE plans, tiered data speeds

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'4GEE Extra' plans and larger mobile broadband allowances coming too

British mobile operator EE has announced some sweeping changes to its range of 4G LTE services today, including new Pay As You Go 4G plans, a new two-tiered approach to LTE speeds and larger allowances for mobile broadband customers.

EE's new prepaid 4G plans for smartphones start from £5 per 30-day period for 100MB of data, increasing through to £30 for 10GB. Anyone with a data bundle greater than 2GB will get EE's fastest "double speed" data rates. Other PAYG customers will get standard speeds of up to 30Mbps. PAYG calls and texts are being charged separately, starting at £3 for 100 minutes and £2 for 400 texts.

The PAYG plans will debut alongside new, cheaper LTE-capable phones, including the £129.99 Alcatel One Touch Idol S, though EE says all its 4G devices will be available to prepaid customers too. To sweeten the deal, anyone signing up from the Oct. 30 launch date through until Jan. 31, 2014 will receive a one-off 10GB data allowance. A Christmas promotion will also give PAYG customers 2014 minutes to use in the new year.

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4 years ago

Feedly updated with speed improvements, new widget

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Feedly 17 also includes new 'discover' section, Galaxy Gear support

RSS reader Feedly emerged as one of the major players in the news-reading world following the demise of Google Reader earlier in the year. And now the Feedly app for Android has undergone a major overhaul, bringing improved performance across the board, as well as new features and an updated home screen widget.

Feedly says the new version of the app boasts 300% faster start times, as well as a new, more fluid scrolling experience. There've also been some visual changes, with fonts being re-tooled for easier readability. And a long-standing gripe — the auto-refresh feature when switching back to the app — has been addressed too. What's more, there's a new "discover" section within the app, populated with some of the day's most popular stories.

Other changes include new Facebook SDK integration and support for Samsung's Galaxy Gear smartwatch. (A reference to Android 4.4 KitKat support being added was quickly scrubbed from the changelog — make of that what you will.)

In any case, Feedly users can grab the latest version of the app from Google Play right now. Hit the link up above to get downloading.

Source: Feedly Blog

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4 years ago

Android 4.3 update for T-Mobile HTC One rolling out in 'next few days'

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HTC continues Android 4.3 rollout right on schedule

Joining in on a long line of Android 4.3 updates for different variants of the HTC One, T-Mobile's version is ready to receive its own update. President of HTC America Jason Mackenzie gave us the tip that the update would be hitting T-Mobile HTC Ones this week, and now we have confirmation again from him.

Taking to Twitter once again, Mackenzie says that the update has passed through T-Mobile's certification process, and will hit devices in the "next few days." If the previous rollouts are any indication it should start notifying users very soon. Seeing it on your own device yet? Let folks know in the comments.

Source: @JasonMacHTC

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4 years ago

Niantic kicks off global Ingress event, #13Magnus

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Big Ingress parties are happening in 35 cities right through to December

Last weekend Niantic started off a major series of events in their location-based game, Ingress. The mostly-autonomous branch of Google working on this (and who also brought us the Field Trip app) started a little something called Operation #13Magnus in L.A., San Jose, and Bangkok, and plans to have more events across the world all the way up to December 14. 

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4 years ago

Mystery Google display case appears at Best Buy (Update: Nexus 10)

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This finely crafted case would be a great place for a new phone or tablet to sit

This seemingly well-built Google branded display case was spotted by a reader in a Houston, Texas area Best Buy store. We received no other information, and really can't say what it might be for.

What we can say is now another has popped up on Google+, and those pedestals are commonly used for phones. We don't know if this is Nexus device related, but we're pretty sure it's something interesting. 

Anyhoo, here it is for your discussion.

Update: Sometimes, it pays to bring a little attention to something. This is one of those times. Several anonymous sources have come forward to clear things up on these. There are two different styles you may be seeing in your Best Buy store. One (not pictured here) is larger and has a display area for Chromebooks. I've seen those here locally. These smaller ones are designed to hold the 2013 Nexus 7, the Chromecast, and the 2013 model ASUS Nexus 10 — which they say will be in Best Buy stores this month. 

Thanks, Anon!

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4 years ago

Verizon deploying LTE on AWS spectrum in major markets

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New spectrum along with carrier aggregation to improve Verizon's LTE offerings soon

Following its nearly $4 billion purchase of AWS spectrum last year, Verizon is ready to start putting it to work for its LTE network in major markets across the U.S. The spectrum, which is also used by T-Mobile for its own network, will give Verizon more real estate to roll out its network to capable handsets. While Verizon isn't disclosing which markets are receiving the upgrades at this time, users have already pegged New York City as one of the markets.

When Verizon does get around to using up its AWS holding in the largest markets, the carrier will be able to offer 20x20MHz LTE — essentially more lanes on a highway for cars to drive on. The number of devices actually capable of using LTE on AWS spectrum is limited, but Verizon says that those with the appropriate hardware will receive software updates to take advantage soon.

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4 years ago

Verizon Moto X soak test invites are happening

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Big Red's Moto X may be preparing for the big camera update

Verizon looks to be joining the Moto X update party, if today's soak test invites mean what everyone thinks they mean. T-Mobile, Sprint and AT&T have updated their Moto X devices to a newer build that fixes a few bugs, enhances a few things, and most importantly makes the camera about a million times better and we've all been waiting to hear when it would hit Verizon.

With soak tests starting shortly, it shouldn't be too long — provided the testing goes well. Of course, there's always a chance that this is a different update, that may be better or more minor (we hate to call any update "worse") than what the other carriers have, but we seriously doubt it.

If you're a member of the Moto feedback network and are using a Verizon Moto X, be on the look out for an invitation of your own. If you're not a member, but have always wanted to be, click here to get the party started and join.

Thanks, anonymous folks who sent this in!

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4 years ago

Two new Nexus 7 commercials continue 'Made for what matters' campaign

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Great commercial spots highlight Google Now, Hangouts and Google Play Books

If there's one thing that Google is great at as of late, it's commercials for its products. Whether its showing off the power of Gmail, Google Search or its Nexus devices, it always knows how to hit your emotions in the right way. The latest two commercials, titled "Study Hall" and "Best Friend" keep up its "Made for what matters" series of commercials, showing what you can actually do with the Nexus 7.

The first commercial, shown above, is a short 15 second spot showing a college kid using Google Now for reminders and search, as well as buying a book through Google Play.

Hit the break for the second commercial spot, and have a box of tissues ready — Google knows how to tug at the heart strings to sell a tablet.

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4 years ago

Humble Bundle with Android 7 now accepting donations

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Six new multi-platform games, and more to come

Yet another bundle of games is going up for sale in a "pay what you want" system with the Humble Bundle with Android 7. This time around the games aren't mobile-specific, but they all come with Android versions alongside their Mac, Linux and Windows counterparts. As is always the case with the Humble Bundle, you pay whatever you would like, and receive four great games:

  • Ticket to Ride
  • Greed Corp
  • Incredipede
  • Anodyne

And if you give over the average, you'll receive two more games as well:

  • Worms Reloaded
  • The Bard's Tale

More games are on their way as well, which you'll receive at no extra cost if you donate over the average at the time of purchase — currently $6.81. Proceeds go to benefit charity along with the game developers, and over $70,000 has already been raised. If you want to check out this group of games, hit the source link below.

Source: Humble Bundle

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