Order the Google Pixel 2: Verizon | Best Buy | Shop: Black Friday 2017


4 years ago

Developer Affairs: The agony and ecstasy of app stores - Talk Mobile


Back in the day, what mattered when picking a smartphone - be it a Nokia N-something, an aging Palm Treo, a BlackBerry with proper answer and end buttons, or a stylus-driven Windows Mobile brick - was the quality of the built-in applications. The features of the email program or the to-do application or whether or not the calendar integrated with Exchange were the driving forces.

4 years ago

New York Times changes non-subscriber access in its Android app


The New York Times is changing access to its stories in its Android application. Previously, non-subscribers could only read from the "Top News" section of the app. Starting June 27, non-subscribers can read three stories a day from any of the more than 25 sections in the app. You'll also be able to browser the section fronts and article summaries. 

The Times is offering a 7-day, all-access free trial if you download the current version of the Android app.

More: NYT subscription rates; Press release

Read more and comment

4 years ago

NVIDIA Shield price dropped to $299, availability date set at June 27


Preorders also will see the $50 discount

NVIDIA dropped a serious stunner about the Shield this morning, announcing a new $299 price tag and general availability starting June 27. According to a post on their official blog, they got great feedback from everyone who has used the device, but there was one common sentiment amongst the early testers -- if the Shield were priced at $299 it would be even more amazing. So that's what they did.

Everyone who has already preordered will be charged the new lower price when their device ships, saving $50 off the originally advertised price of $349. That's a lot of great Tegra-optimized games from Google Play, or maybe a nice dinner to make it easier to tell the wife you just spend $300. Any way you slice it, everyone loves saving $50.

Source: NVIDIA

Read more and comment

4 years ago

Being mobile-ready: Google Hangouts will kill every webinar platform out there


With what we now know about the pace of mobile broadband penetration and mobile computing power, it’s pretty safe to say that people are going to rely more and more on mobile technology to do their work. And communicating with others is a big part of doing work.

Call them what you like, but Internet-based meetings and presentations are a big part of how businesses and entrepreneurs, both large and small, communicate. I’ve been paying attention to this market for a while and right now I think we’re watching Google deliver a crushing blow to every other major platform.

Most readers probably know about Google Chat, which eventually morphed into Google Hangouts. Initially these hangouts were limited to 10 people and could not be broadcast to the world. Then, before we know what hit us, Google announces the ability to do “live on air” hangouts. You can still have a bunch of people together in a meeting, but you’re simultaneously broadcasting the whole thing to the world through the power of YouTube.

Amazing. Simply amazing. If you’re paying attention to Talk Mobile then you’ve already seen Phil, Dan, Kevin, Rene and Marcus using the tool. Is it as good as the Skype-based technology Mobile Nations has been using previously? Not yet, but you they’d all agree it‘s improving much faster.

What does this have to do with mobile? A couple of things. First, many audience members who want to watch online meetings will be on mobile devices. Because YouTube already works beautifully on mobile devices it gives Google a leg up on the competition. Also, I think it won’t be long before the actual presenters in webinars are starting to use mobile devices to capture video.

Read more and comment

4 years ago

Verizon Galaxy S3 receiving OTA update once again


Small bugfix update will hopefully address issues caused by the previous OTA

Following up on a previous update -- software VRBMD3 -- that caused a whole bucket of issues for some Galaxy S3 owners, Verizon is pushing out a small OTA tonight that will hopefully address them. The update, which a few members in our forums are pulling down as we type, is small but will hopefully fix what has been a rocky rollout of VRBMD3. The new software version, VRBMF1, doesn't have an official changelog or support documentation available just yet, but we'll be keeping our eyes out for it on the Verizon support website. Expect details on the update to hit as it rolls out to a larger number of users over the next couple of days.

Read more and comment

4 years ago

Logitech to provide Harmony Ultimate Hub as a stand alone product, turns your Android into a universal remote


Logitech released availability and pricing information for the Harmony Ultimate Hub as a stand alone product this evening, and the device is expected in August 2013 and will retail for $100. The Ultimate Hub is used in conjunction with an Android app to turn your Android or iOS device into a universal remote.

The Hub, which is designed to sit in and among your home entertainment equipment acts as a bridge, allowing commands sent over Wifi from your device to be output ar IR/RF commands to operate video and audio components, like the ones commonly found in living rooms all over the world. Those familiar with the current Harmony line of universal remotes know that programming can be entered to control just about any device.

In addition, Logitech has announced that they will not be selling off the Harmony line of products, saying a surge in momentum since unveiling the Harmony Ultimate makes retaining ownership in the best interest of their shareholders.

Previously, the Hub was only available as part of a more expensive package with a bundled smart remote. Now, users who would just rather use their phone can save a little money. The full press release is after the break.

Read more and comment

4 years ago

A broken Falcon Pro is just the start of the Twitter pain


If you paid for a Twitter client after August 2012, it's time to accept that you might eventually lose your $2

It's time to start facing the long, hard facts, folks. The writing has been on the wall for some 10 months now -- since Twitter announced the API v1.1 changes that would significantly change things for developers of third-party clients, essentially putting a hard cap of 100,000 new user tokens. (Twitter said "you'll need our permission if your application will require more than 100,000 individual user tokens," but it doesn't sound like it's granted that to any of the apps we use.)

Since that announcement last fall, we saw Tweet Lanes (and others) all but shut down. (Update: Yes, we understand Tweet Lanes went open-source.) Falcon Pro debuted in November with that 100,000-token limit held over its head, and it ran into that wall in February 2013. A new version was released a few days later, requiring users to buy it sign in again -- and pay about a dollar more if buying for the first time -- and starting that vicious cycle once more.

This week, Twitter shut it down. Regular users are pissed. The folks in the newly formed Falcon Pro beta community are pissed. It's not fair to users. But neither should it be unexpected.

Read more and comment

4 years ago

Optimus G successor will use Snapdragon 800 processors


LG and Qualcomm tonight announced that the follow-up to 2012's LG Optimus G flagship smartphone will use the Snapdragon 800 processor. The as-yet unnamed phone (it's not been publicly announced, anyway) is expected to be announced later this year.

The continued partnership isn't unexpected -- the original Optimus G was one of the first out of the gate with the Snapdragon S4 Pro. The Snapdragon 800 promises a 75 percent performance increase over that system, sporting the Krait 400 CPU and Adreno 330 GPU, LTE Advanced capability and Ultra HD video capture, playback and display.

Read more and comment

4 years ago

Qualcomm targets emerging markets with 6 new additions to Snapdragon 200 line


We tend to focus on the top-tier "super" phones here, but we should never forget that the important market is made of the people who don't yet have a smartphone in areas where technology is only beginning to penetrate. Labeled "emerging markets" by the media, these areas are filled with folks who might not want nor be able to afford $700 smart phones. 

The folks making the phones, and the people like Qualcomm who build out the components know how important this sector is. They want people to have devices they can afford, and while it's more of a business decision than a humanitarian one, they do what is necessary to deliver products that will make an impact. We're seeing more evidence of that today from Qualcomm.

In a press release they just sent out, they have announced six new variants of the Snapdragon 200 chip, ready for use in phones and other devices that won't break the bank. Complete with an Adreno 302, the new chips will offer enough horsepower to perform all the standard tasks one would need a smart phone to do, on the networks people need them to be on. The configurations are complete with support for HSPA+ 21 and TD-SCDMA 3G networks, and will come in standard, Dual-SIM Dual-Standby, Dual-SIM Dual-Active and Tri-SIM Tri-Standby configurations. Of course, they're designed to fully support Android as well as Firefox OS and Windows Phone.

These aren't chips that will make their way into devices in the west, but they are a key to both the company's success and pushing technology to people who don't yet have access to it. That makes them important even if we don't feature them in headlines every day. Hit the break for the full press release.

Read more and comment

4 years ago

Google promoting Google Play Music when connecting to Starbucks free Wifi


Logging into free Wifi at Starbucks? Now you'll be shown a free trial offer for Google Play Music All Access

Starting this week, Starbucks and Google have partnered up to offer customers that connect to its free Wifi promotional deals to check out content from Google Play. For some time now Starbucks has been partnering with different companies -- most recently The Wall Street Journal -- to advertise on their free WIfi login page, offering different deals or showing promotional videos before you were able to log on. At many Starbucks locations customers will now see an advertisement (shown above) for Google Play Music All Access, promoting the features of the service and offering a click-through to a free trial. 

Clicking through offers customers a full browser page where they'll see the merits of the service and give them a chance to start the same 30-day free trial that has been offered since the service's introduction at Google I/O. It also offers the same $7.99 discounted price when signing up before June 30th, but doesn't seem to offer any special deal beyond that for Starbucks customers. The page also offers users a chance to check out the rest of Google Play -- Books, Magazines, TV and Apps -- in a nicely stylized format.

Read more and comment

4 years ago

This week's sidebar poll: Does Google Play have all the apps you want?


Does Google Play cover all your wants and needs in the app department, or are you left wanting? Tell us in this week's poll

Kevin, Phil and the gang have been talking apps and app stores all week in Talk Mobile. They're sharing some pretty deep insight into the way apps, and the buying and selling of them, and most important of all -- availability.

Talk Mobile is a great way to see and discuss the general mobile atmosphere, but let's drill down a bit and focus on Android for this one. Google Play has over 700,000 apps. A lot of those apps are live wallpapers, themes, icon packs, and widgets. Those are all important, and we're not discounting them at all, but they're not exactly what we think of when we talk about apps. But even then, chances are Google Play has a whole lot of stand alone programs that will run on our phones and tablets, and our choices are pretty good. But can it ever be good enough?

Have you ever wanted an app to do something and couldn't find a solution in Google Play? Or maybe an app you really want is exclusive on another platform. Here's you chance to be heard. In the sidebar to the right, as well as after the break, you'll find a poll where you can tell everyone if you've been able to score everything you want on Android. Be honest, and be sure to participate.

For the record, I had to vote no. I want an accessory and accompanying app to plug my guitar into the Nexus 10 and use it as an amp. I know why this isn't easy to do, but I still want it badly. Maybe one day.

Read more and comment

4 years ago

Boost Mobile carrying LG Optimus F7 for $299 starting June 27


Mid-range specs meet LTE connectivity at an acceptable off-contract price point for the prepaid market

As rumored, the LG Optimus F7 is making its way to Boost Mobile with a $299 off-contract price and mid-range specs. This is the budget prepaid carrier's fourth LTE device of the year, and looks to be very similar to the version recently launched on U.S. Cellular. The Optimus F7 is squarely in the mid-range of specs, with a 4.7-inch 720x1280 display, 1.5GHz dual-core (Snapdragon S4 Plus) processor, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of storage and 8MP/1.3MP cameras. Naturally, the Optimus F7 is running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean with LG's customizations and bundled apps.

The Optimus F7 will be available starting June 27th for $299 without a contract, and when paired with one of Boost Mobile's $55 unlimited plans can be a real cost saver over the alternative high-end devices.

Read more and comment

4 years ago

Spring cleaning: Win a Sony NSZ-GZ7 Google TV player

I'm finally seeing some daylight as the pile of stuff in my office gets smaller, but there is one last thing that needs to go -- a Sony NSZ-GZ7 Google TV set-top box. Almost a year after release, it's still one of the most capable Google TV units we've tried (and we've tried a bunch), and there is still plenty of life left in this one even after daily use for almost a year.

To win, you need to enter, and that's easy enough. Leave a comment below. At midnight Pacific, I'll shut the comments down and pick a winner. We use the email you registered with here at AC to contact you, so make sure it's valid and that you check it from time to time. 

Tomorrow, I'll announce all the spring cleaning winners here on the blog. Good luck!

Read more and comment

4 years ago

Feedly launches 'Feedly Cloud' sync platform, new web interface


Press RSS reader, among others, also updated to support new Feedly services

Feedly, one of the leading Google Reader replacement services, announced major restructuring of its services today with a new cloud infrastructure and web interface. Posted on its official blog, Feedly unveiled what it calls "Feedly Cloud", a scalable infrastructure it says is ready to replace Google Reader. The new Feedly Cloud provides several benefits, the first of which is one-click import from Google Reader -- new users to the service can now simply pull everything over seamlessly from their Google account and start using Feedly right away.

Existing users will simply have to make sure that they have the latest version of Feedly installed, and their accounts will be migrated to Feedly Cloud over the next few days. Additionally, the new service allowed Feedly to create a stand-alone web interface (found simply at cloud.feedly.com) that works in all major browsers without plugins or extensions.

Read more and comment

4 years ago

Ematic FunTab Mini 2, another kid-focused tablet


A simple, tough tablet for children that comes in at just $69

Ematic is launching another tablet in its "FunTab" line of kid-focused devices, this time in a smaller form factor with the Mini 2. Just like its other devices, the FunTab Mini 2 is designed from the ground-up with young children in mind, with software and hardware that is designed to be simple and robust. The Mini 2 runs a software layer called "Zoodles Kid Mode", giving them access to a small set of games and tools that are fun and educational. It also provides parents with easy tools to watch their child's progress after the fact.

This 4.3-inch "tablet" of sorts is designed to take a beating with big bezels and rubberized grips along the sides, keeping it safe from the inevitable bumps it will endure. Inside there's a mild set of specs like a 1.2GHz processor, 512MB of RAM and Wifi, but what really matters is the ability to hand a tablet like this to your kid and not worry about it from a hardware or software standpoint. The FunTab Mini 2 is available now for just $69 at both TigerDirect and Amazon.

More: Ematic

Read more and comment

Show More Headlines