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AfterDawn: News

T-Mobile offering a free year of Netflix to Galaxy S6 buyers

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 25 Mar 2015 13:49

T-Mobile offering a free year of Netflix to Galaxy S6 buyers T-Mobile USA CEO John Legere has confirmed today that the carrier is offering a full free year of Netflix if you purchase a new Samsung Galaxy S6.

Normally, a Netflix account costs $8.99 per month so a year free is a pretty nice deal.

The upcoming Galaxy S6 will sell for over $600 unlocked and T-Mobile does not have contracts but does offering monthly financing.

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AfterDawn: News

HP drops Beats audio and partners with Bang & Olufsen

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 25 Mar 2015 13:10

HP drops Beats audio and partners with Bang & Olufsen After years of using Beats audio technology for its PCs and tablets, HP has dropped its old partner and teamed up with Bang & Olufsen.

The move makes sense since Beats was recently acquired by Apple, a rival in the tablet and notebook space.

HP says the companies will "custom tune" audio for each PC model, depending on hardware and software specs.

Omen, Spectre and Envy models will get the Bang & Olufsen brand right on the computer, while lower-end Pavilion PCs and tablets will see the 'B&O Play' brand label. Additionally, HP will sell B&O accessories.

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AfterDawn: News

OpenTable for Android now allows you to pay for your meals direct from the app

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 25 Mar 2015 12:37

OpenTable for Android now allows you to pay for your meals direct from the app OpenTable has added a mobile payments option to its popular restaurant booking app for Android users, a few months after iOS users.

Because of OpenTable's integration into the house software of the restaurant, including reservation and seating assignments, the new update will also let the host know when a user wants to pay via app so that the server can also be advised.

There are over 30,000 restaurants that use OpenTable, currently.

For app users, you simply open the app, click on the image of their check and swipe to pay with an attacked card. For the time being, splitting is not yet supported.

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AfterDawn: News

Microsoft makes Office free for all devices smaller than 10 inches

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 25 Mar 2015 12:21

Microsoft makes Office free for all devices smaller than 10 inches The world's most popular productivity suite will now be free for all devices under 10 inches in size.

Kirk Koenigsbauer, Microsoft CVP for Office 365 Client Apps and Services, said that editing and viewing docs on smaller screen devices will remain free as those devices are personal compared to anything above 10.1-inches, which it considers 'professional.'

"Currently, we are also using screen size to delineate between professional and personal use," Koenigsbauer wrote. "Based on our research, we are classifying anything with a screen size of 10.1 inches or less as a true mobile device: You're probably using it on the go, when it's not practical to use a larger computing device such as a PC or a Mac. You probably aren't using a mouse or a keyboard, instead navigating via touch interface. It's probably not a "pro" category tablet that is used for design or presentations."

Update: Microsoft reached out to inform us that the Office 365 subscription will allow you to create, edit and view documents from your mobile device.

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AfterDawn: News

Sony PlayStation 4 system update 2.50 available tomorrow including suspend/resume and external backups

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 25 Mar 2015 11:58

Sony PlayStation 4 system update 2.50 available tomorrow including suspend/resume and external backups After a long wait, Sony PlayStation 4 owners will get their system update to version 2.50, bringing a plethora of new and highly awaited features.

The update is codenamed 'Yukimura' and Sony says it will streamline the PS4 experience.

Here is a full list of the updates:

Suspend/Resume -- Supported by nearly all of your PS4 games, you can jump in and out of your games with just the press of the PS button. Quickly switch from Rest Mode to powered-up so you can pick up where you left off.
•Back-Up and Restore HDD to USB -- Back-up and restore your hard disc drive data associated with users on your PS4, including settings, saved data, screenshots and video clips as well as games, patches and download data, to and from an external USB drive.
•Find and Connect with Friends -- "Yukimura" adds to an already robust set of social tools, bringing several updates to continue making PS4 the best place to play with your friends, including: •Facebook Friend Finder -- Using your linked account, you can expand your network by searching and connecting with your Facebook friends.
•Improved Friend requests -- Friend requests and Real Name requests can be sent together in one step when adding a friend on PS4.
•Streamlined Party process -- The process to create a Party has been streamlined with a reduction in the number of steps required.
•Find Friends who play your games -- Easily view what friends are playing on each game detail page with a real-time "Friends Who Play This" section, which also highlights which friends are currently online and playing it, and if you own the game, allows you to jump directly into the game.
•Join Friends directly from news feed -- A new tile will be added on your What's New feed where you can see what your friends are currently playing, enabling you to join in the game if you own it.

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AfterDawn: News

TomTom returns to Android market with 'free' GO Mobile navigation app

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 25 Mar 2015 11:46

TomTom returns to Android market with 'free' GO Mobile navigation app TomTom has unveiled their new Android navigation app, GO Mobile, a "free" app that includes high-end features seen in TomTom's GPS devices.

The app allows drivers to navigate up to 75km per month for free, with 'premium' navigation and real-time traffic info.

"The TomTom GO Mobile app for Android is made for drivers who want to experience the best of TomTom on their smartphone," says Corinne Vigreux, Managing Director, TomTom Consumer. "We entirely rethought our Mobile solution so every driver has the chance to try navigation with TomTom Traffic. Now all Android owners can avoid the traffic jams and get to their destinations faster, every day."

Most notably, TomTom GO does add the ability for offline maps, which is great if you reach a deadzone data area and speed camera warnings.

To upgrade to unlimited navigation, the in-app purchase will set you back €19.99 for a one year subscription or €44.99 for three years.

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AfterDawn: News

YouTube to take on Twitch with plans to relaunch livestreaming service for gaming videos

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 25 Mar 2015 11:32

YouTube to take on Twitch with plans to relaunch livestreaming service for gaming videos According to multiple sources, YouTube is planning to relaunch its livestreaming service in an effort to take on Twitch, with the platform focusing on live gaming video and esports.

"Gaming and esports in particular are going to be a big driving force for the new-look YouTube Live," one source said. "There'll be huge opportunities for established streamers and organizations soon and I would say that the record numbers of esports viewers are only going to grow when Google start promoting and partnering with these events."

Google first used YouTube to livestream events in 2010, including Indian Premier League cricket matches, but popularity waned after an initial spike. By the end of last year, there were no more live streaming events on YouTube.

Twitch, which is the undisputed leader in the live gaming industry, was a target for Google last year but Amazon ending up purchasing the company for $1 billion.

Reportedly, Google has already hired 50 engineers with streaming backgrounds and the company is expected to officially launch the service at E3 in June.

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AfterDawn: News

Salt Lake City is the next lucky city to get Google Fiber gigabit Internet

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 25 Mar 2015 11:19

Salt Lake City is the next lucky city to get Google Fiber gigabit Internet Google has announced that Salt Lake City, Utah is the next lucky city to get access to Google Fiber Internet and TV.

The Internet service, which offers 1 gigabit download speeds that are on average 40 times faster than average cable connections, is currently only available in 7 regions.

Google says the city is now being fitted for fiber-optic cables and the build out is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

Earlier this year, Google began rolling out cable in Atlanta, Charlotte, Nashville and Raleigh-Durham. Google Fiber is already live in Kansas City, Austin and Provo.

Read more here.




AfterDawn: News

Google working on new Gmail feature to allow payments right from email

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 25 Mar 2015 11:09

Google working on new Gmail feature to allow payments right from email Google is reportedly working on 'Pony Express,' a new feature for Gmail that will allow users to receive and pay their bills without leaving their email inbox.

Internally, the company is calling the service "the future of paper mail" and it could roll out before the Q4 this year.

How does the service work? Reports say users will need to provide lots of personal information about themselves, including full social security numbers, and their identities will be verified by a third-party. Once that is completed, you will be able to receive bills right to your inbox (Gmail or Inbox), and pay them, as well.

It appears you will be able to pay via credit/debit card and also link up a bank account.

Finally, Pony Express allows you to forward bills to others to split the balance, for example if you live with roommates and they help split that electricity or cable bill.

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AfterDawn: News

RadioShack is selling your personal data

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 24 Mar 2015 23:33

RadioShack is selling your personal data Earlier this year, RadioShack declared bankruptcy after years of declining sales and failed attempts to rebound.

Besides selling physical locations, trademarks and other inventory, the company is also selling off 65 million names and physical addresses in addition to 13 million email addresses - personal data that could be greatly valuable to a top bidder.

Reportedly, RadioShack's largest creditor, Standard General, has won the bid for the assets including the personal data but a judge still has to approve the purchase and there is a chance that the data could be a problem in trying to close the auction.

Among those challenging the purchase are the Texas and Tennessee attorney generals and major carrier AT&T, who previously partnered with RadioShack to market phones and does not want data of its customers getting into the hands of a rival carrier.

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AfterDawn: News

Twitch sees unauthorized access to some of its user's accounts

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 24 Mar 2015 23:11

Twitch sees unauthorized access to some of its user's accounts Popular game video streaming service Twitch reached out to its users yesterday to inform them of a minor breach in which some user accounts were accessed by unauthorized parties.

Reads the blog post:

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AfterDawn: News

Supercell's revenue doubles as 'Clash,' 'Boom Beach' remain wildly popular

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 24 Mar 2015 22:31

Supercell's revenue doubles as 'Clash,' 'Boom Beach' remain wildly popular Supercell, the private Finnish gaming startup, has revealed their 2014 earnings today.

The gaming company saw its revenue grow to $1.7 billion in 2014, up from $850 million in 2013 (when considering the euro currency was stronger), and profits are an incredible $565 million, up from $267 million in 2013.

Supercell has had a string of hits including Clash of Clans, Boom Beach and the more family-friendly Hay Day. Clash of Clans, for example, has been the top grossing game for iOS and Android for over two years now.

Clash and Boom Beach are so important to the studio and so successful that Supercell has been releasing commercial ads for the games, including one for the Super Bowl that is estimated to have cost up to $10 million.

Supercell is so efficient, that they only have three active games right now and just 150 employees. Other gaming companies like Rovio have more employees and Candy Crush hitmaker King Digital has 1200 employees.

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AfterDawn: News

Cyanogen raises another $80 million in its fight against Android

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 23 Mar 2015 23:00

Cyanogen raises another $80 million in its fight against Android Cyanogen, the mobile operating system startup looking to take down Google has raised another $80 million from venture capitalists.

The company says it will use the funds to hire developers and to "accelerate the development" of its open OS platform.

"We're committed to creating an open computing platform that fundamentally empowers the entire mobile ecosystem from developers to hardware makers, and most importantly, consumers around the world," said Kirt McMaster, CEO of Cyanogen Inc. "We're excited to have the backing of an amazingly diverse group of strategic investors who are supporting us in building a truly open Android."

"We invested in Cyanogen because we're big proponents of what they're doing in opening up Android and supporting global and local ecosystem players,"
said Sandesh Patnam, Technology Sector Lead of Premji Invest. "Cyanogen is well positioned to become the 3rd leading mobile OS, and we're excited to back them in growing their business on a global scale."

With the new funding, Cyanogen has now raised $110 million.

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AfterDawn: News

The WonderCube adds external storage, flashlight, stand, phone charger and more into a tiny 1 inch cube

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 23 Mar 2015 22:12

The WonderCube adds external storage, flashlight, stand, phone charger and more into a tiny 1 inch cube While many cool tech projects have appeared on crowdfunding sites like Indiegogo and Kickstarter, there are only some that reach beyond the niche and appeal to a wide range of consumers.

One such project is the new WonderCube, a tiny piece of hardware that promises "8 mobile essentials in One Cubic Inch."

The WonderCube combines a built-in Lightning or microUSB cable, a stand, a microSD slot and an LED torch all-in one, which allows for emergency charging, syncing to PCs, and more, all from a tiny cube that fits on your keychain.

Take a look at the WonderCube here, as it campaigns at $49 ($20 off expected retail):

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AfterDawn: News

HTC seemingly backtracks on word that older One (M7) would not get newer Android updates

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 23 Mar 2015 21:46

HTC seemingly backtracks on word that older One (M7) would not get newer Android updates Last week, HTC broke the news that their old HTC One M7 phone would not get the update to Android 5.1 unless you had the Google Play Edition.

The decision was not too surprising since HTC guarantees Android updates for just the first two years of a device's life, but there were still a large amount of M7 owners who were saddened at the news.

When the phone launched in 2013, it started with Android 4.1.2 and currently runs Lollipop 5.0, which is a lot more than can be said for other devices released in the last two years.

HTC's Mo Versi did change his tune a bit after the backlash, explaining "I heard you all on M7 5.1 for Carrier versions. Many of the fixes are already in our current SW, but understand your concerns. Stay tuned."

That's not a guarantee the phone will get the update, but it's better than nothing.

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