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AfterDawn: News

Verizon could be finally getting the Nexus 6

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Feb 2015 15:05

Verizon could be finally getting the Nexus 6 Three months after T-Mobile users got their hands on the Google reference device, Verizon subscribers may finally be on the verging of getting the Nexus 6 themselves.

Thanks to leaked in-store marketing materials and a promo video leaked accidentally by Verizon, it appears the Nexus 6 could be headed to the U.S.' largest carrier on March 11th.

At launch, the phone will have VoLTE and Lollipop 5.1 but no other noticeable differences.

Check out our review here: Review: The Massive Nexus 6 is the Perfect Device for Android Lollipop

Source:
Phandroid




AfterDawn: News

Swatch unveils first smartwatch/fitness tracker, marketed for volleyball players

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Feb 2015 14:20

Swatch unveils first smartwatch/fitness tracker, marketed for volleyball players Popular Swiss watch maker Swatch has introduced its first smartwatch today: The Swatch Touch Zero One.

The company had announced last month that their first smartwatch was coming, but what we are seeing is different than what most expected. The watch is being marketed to beach volleyball players, and many of the features of the watch itself for created with volleyball in mind.

For your money, you get a curved touchscreen, built-in backlight, tap and swipe gesture controls and Beach Volleyball functions like a step counter, a "power hit" counter and "power clap" counter. The watch will be able to differentiate between attack hits, low hits, high hits and 'high fives.' The Power Hit counter will rate the hit on a scale of 1 to 100, with professionals likely to see 80s or higher.

The watch syncs with your Android and iOS phone, acting as a fitness tracker not unlike other watches and bands like the Fitbit.

Unlike other current smartwatches, the battery will last for "months," says the company. If accurate, that would be a huge selling point. Keep in mind that it is unclear whether the watch uses Bluetooth or NFC, and whether it can sync texts, phone calls and other notifications.

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AfterDawn: News

Netflix beats anti-trust class action suit stemming from DVD rental business in 2005

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Feb 2015 14:05

Netflix beats anti-trust class action suit stemming from DVD rental business in 2005 Though we would forgive you if you forgot, Netflix used to be a DVD-by-mail rental company before becoming a streaming giant.

In 2005, Netflix acquired Walmart's failed DVD-by-mail service, which had 60,000 subscribers in exchange for promoting Walmart's online DVD sales and for a cut of revenue made off of previous Walmart subscribers.

After the deal, class action lawsuits were filed, alleging that the deal kept prices artificially high. At the time, Blockbuster was offering a 3U plan (3 discs out at a time, unlimited per month) for $15.99 while Netflix was charging $19.95 for the same deal. The suits alleged that Netflix would have dropped their prices to match had it not been for the Walmart deal.

Walmart decided to settle the suit for $27 million in 2011, meaning all 1.2 million claimants will receive a gift card for $12. Netflix, on the other hand, took the battle to court and has now beaten the charges since the subscribers could not adequately prove they were injured by the deal.

Read the ruling from 9th Circuit chief judge Sidney Thomas:

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AfterDawn: News

Hands-on with the new HTC One M9 leaks a day ahead of official release

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Feb 2015 13:29

Hands-on with the new HTC One M9 leaks a day ahead of official release A hands-on video for the new HTC One M9 has leaked today, a day ahead of the phone's official unveiling at Mobile World Congress.

Over the past week, nearly all details of the phone have been leaked including press shots and full spec sheets but the video does confirm a few features.

The power button has been moved to the side, the design is two-tone, and the Ultrapixel tech camera has been moved up front for better low-light selfies.

Other than the changes, the phone looks very similar to the critically acclaimed HTC One M8 which was released last year.

Take a peak at the hands-on here before the announcement tomorrow:

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AfterDawn: News

Pirated HD copy of 'Fifty Shades of Grey' hits the Web, sans explicit scenes

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Feb 2015 13:18

Pirated HD copy of 'Fifty Shades of Grey' hits the Web, sans explicit scenes Just a day after legal services in China began streaming a censored version of the film, a pirated copy of 'Fifty Shades of Grey' has hit the Web.

Tencent's QQ.com streamed the censored film in HD, which was promptly ripped and packaged for download. As with other Web rips from Chinese sources, there are large hardcoded Chinese subtitles.

Most people who want to see the movie likely want to for the explicit sex scenes that made the book popular, so this release is not for them. Downloaders have called the film a "PG-13 version," as Chinese censors took a knife to it.

By all accounts, there are about 6 minutes worth of scenes missing.

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AfterDawn: News

Uber got hacked, in May of last year

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Feb 2015 13:06

Uber got hacked, in May of last year Disruptive taxi startup Uber has admitted today that the company had a security breach, in May of last year.

In its release, the company says there was a one-time access to Uber's database by a third party, and that 50,000 current and former drivers were affected.

Names and driver's license numbers were stolen, but Uber says it is unaware of any fraud or other misuse of the info.

The company broke down the events as they know it:


•On September 17, 2014, we discovered that one of our databases could potentially have been accessed by a third party.
•Upon discovery we immediately changed the access protocols for the database and began an in-depth investigation.
•Our investigation revealed that a one-time unauthorized access to an Uber database by a third party had occurred on May 13, 2014.
•Our investigation determined the unauthorized access impacted approximately 50,000 drivers across multiple states, which is a small percentage of current and former Uber driver partners.
•The files that were accessed contained only the name and driver's license number of some driver partners.
•To date, we have not received any reports of actual misuse of any information as a result of this incident, but we are notifying impacted drivers and recommend these individuals monitor their credit reports for fraudulent transactions or accounts.

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AfterDawn: News

Rumor: Next Nexus devices to be built by Huawei

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Feb 2015 12:22

Rumor: Next Nexus devices to be built by Huawei According to new sources, Google is considering partnering with Chinese OEM Huawei for the next Nexus flagship devices.

Every year, Google launches a Nexus smartphone and a Nexus tablet, each serving as reference devices for the latest iteration of Android. For 2014, Motorola built the Nexus 6 and HTC built the Nexus 9 tablet.

Neither Google nor Huawei has confirmed the rumor.

Despite being unknown outside of China, Huawei brought in nearly $12 billion in revenue last year from Android smartphone sales.

It will be interesting to see which way Google decides to go for 2015.

Source and mockup image:
SlashGear




AfterDawn: News

Take a look at the waterproof Sony Xperia M4 Aqua

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Feb 2015 12:02

Take a look at the waterproof Sony Xperia M4 Aqua The Sony Xperia M4 Aqua has been leaked ahead of the Mobile World Congress event, showing off the company's waterproof flagship.

If the rumors are correct, the device has a 720p 5.2-inch display, 2GB RAM, a 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon 610, 16GB internal storage, Android 5.0 and dual 5MP/13MP cameras.

From what has leaked we can see a familiar Xperia design, including a dedicated camera button.

Take a look here:

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AfterDawn: News

Samsung shows off 128GB UFS 2.0 memory for new smartphones

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Feb 2015 11:47

Samsung shows off 128GB UFS 2.0 memory for new smartphones Samsung has announced it has begun mass producing 128GB Universal Flash Storage (UFS) 2.0 embedded memory chips for next-generation smartphones.

"With our mass production of ultra-fast UFS memory of the industry's highest capacity, we are making a significant contribution to enable a more advanced mobile experience for consumers,"
said Jee-ho Baek, Senior Vice President of Memory Marketing, Samsung Electronics. "In the future, we will increase the proportion of high-capacity memory solutions, in leading the continued growth of the premium memory market."


According to Samsung, UFS "memory utilizes 'Command Queue,' a technology that accelerates the speed of command execution in SSDs through a serial interface, significantly increasing data processing speeds compared to the 8-bit parallel-interface-based eMMC standard.

As a result, Samsung UFS memory conducts 19,000 input/output operations per second (IOPS) for random reading, which is 2.7 times faster than the most common embedded memory for high-end smartphones today, the eMMC 5.0. It also delivers a sequential read and write performance boost up to SSD levels, in addition to a 50 percent decrease in energy consumption. In addition, the random read speed is 12 times faster than that of a typical high-speed memory card (which runs at 1,500 IOPS), and is expected to greatly improve system performance."

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AfterDawn: News

Chinese streaming sites backtrack on promise to play uncensored 'Fifty Shades of Grey'

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Feb 2015 11:36

Chinese streaming sites backtrack on promise to play uncensored 'Fifty Shades of Grey' A number of Chinese streaming sites have backtracked on their promise to stream the uncensored full version of 'Fifty Shades of Grey,' citing 'special reasons.'

The movie, which features sexual bondage and has been a hit across the globe, set February box office records in the U.S. The book on which it is based upon, was a best-selling hit, as well.

LeTV.com, iQiyi.com and QQ.com had each said on Weibo that they would stream the film but just posted apologies. "We pray that everyone won't have to watch a 'big-head' version when it becomes available," LeTV said, referring to recent films and TV shows that censor out low necklines by zooming in on the women's faces during scenes.

The aforementioned site did say it would release the uncut version for premium subscribers.

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AfterDawn: News

Don't forget to pre-order the $75,000 diamond Apple Watch now

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Feb 2015 11:10

Don't forget to pre-order the $75,000 diamond Apple Watch now Even though the Apple Watch is at least two weeks away from launch, luxury design company Brikk has already announced a line of Apple Watches that cost as much as $75,000.

We are a couple of weeks away from learning the pricing and availability of the different models of the Apple Watch, but many have speculated that the high end 'Edition' model will cost $10,000.

Brikk has placed 30 different models of the smartwatch up for pre-order, starting at $7500, and each watch is a teardown of the original which is then "rebuilt with luxury materials" including diamonds.

Besides the diamonds, you can choose from 24-karat yellow gold, 18-karat pink gold, and 950 platinum and you can also choose between the standard 38mm face or a larger 42mm for extra money.

At the very base price, you get the Lux Watch Standard with a leather strap and a single row of 0.5 carat diamonds. The $75,000 model gets you a titanium band and 11.3 carat diamonds on the face and strap. The top model requires a non-refundable $10,000 deposit. It even comes with an "aluminum zero" case with carbon fiber and suede interior.

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AfterDawn: News

Apple sued again over patent infringement

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 27 Feb 2015 23:51

Apple sued again over patent infringement Swedish telecom hardware maker Ericsson has sued Apple for patent infringement, filing a complaint with the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC).

Apple allegedly refused Ericsson's offer to have a court ruling determine licensing terms between the companies.

Ericsson's patents are related to the 2G and 4G/LTE standards used in all of Apple products and Ericsson wants an injunction on the affected products and also damages.

The previous licensing agreement expired a month ago. At that time, Apple filed a lawsuit claiming that the patents were not essential to the industry's standards, and that Ericsson was charging exorbitant royalties fees.

If Ericsson wins, Apple will have to pay at least $250 million a year in royalties, depending on how many iPhones are sold.

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AfterDawn: News

Panasonic unveils awfully named 64-bit smartphone

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 27 Feb 2015 23:27

Panasonic unveils awfully named 64-bit smartphone Panasonic has unveiled their first 64-bit Android smartphone, the awfully named Eluga U2.

The device runs on Android 5.0 Lollipop, has a 5-inch 720p IPS display, a 64-bit quad-core Snapdragon 410 processor, 2GB RAM, 16GB internal storage and a 2500mAh battery. The cameras are 5MP/13MP, providing clearer selfies than most existing phones.

Most importantly, the phone will be priced at $250 unlocked when it launches, although it is unclear if it will ship outside of Asian markets.

Paired with the recently announced Lumix CM1 and its DSLR-esque, it appears that Panasonic is back in the game.

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AfterDawn: News

Google+ primed for spinoffs with Photos and Hangouts likely to go first

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 27 Feb 2015 23:04

Google+ primed for spinoffs with Photos and Hangouts likely to go first Google SVP and head of Android and Chrome Sundar Pichai has said today that some popular products may soon breakaway from Google+, starting with Hangouts and Photos.

Currently you need Google+ to have access to the other products but that could change soon. "I think increasingly you'll see us focus on communications [Hangouts], photos, and the Google+ stream as three important areas, rather than being thought of as one area," Pichai noted.

Hangouts, which allows users to chat, video chat and send photos, is popular among Gmail and Android fans but has nowhere near the popularity of WhatsApp or even Facebook's own Messenger service. That's okay, says Pichai: "Things like WhatsApp are a great example of success that others have had on Android, which we see as welcome innovation on the platform. In the aggregate, we also care about building great services for people. At that level, we view communications as an important area. But that doesn't mean the answer is always a vertical service. We do have products like Hangouts which we will invest in and evolve. But we also care about the platform in these areas, how we evolve the platform so we support others to do these innovations as well."

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AfterDawn: News

Sony Xperia Z4 ready for primetime with 2K display

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 27 Feb 2015 22:31

Sony Xperia Z4 ready for primetime with 2K display Sony has confirmed that its oft-rumored Z4 tablet is ready for primetime, with launch expected on March 3rd during the Mobile World Congress event.

Posted on their on Xperia Lounge app before getting pulled, the device has a "stunning 2K display" (likely 2048 × 1536 resolution), "the latest ultra fast processor" (likely the Snapdragon 810) and "industry leading battery performance" (hopefully 12 hours+).

The teaser of the design shows a thin device with curved edges, familiar to owners of the Z3 Compact.

We will know the full specs and prices next week.

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