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Briefly: Virgin Media iOS app update, Goat Simulator on mobile

09/17, 6:13am

Virgin Media updates iOS app with new look, bug fixes

British cable company Virgin Media has overhauled the iOS version of its TV Anywhere app. Engadget notes the app now uses a purple color scheme and some updates to bring it in line with iOS 7 and iOS 8, making the app appear more modern. The app update also precedes an upcoming makeover of Virgin Media's TiVo set-top box interface, with the addition of the Opera app store and an additional "What to Watch Now" function set to be added in October.

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Apple publishes guide for Android data transfer to iOS devices

09/16, 7:05pm

Company confident that new larger iPhones will attract switchers

With its combination of more and better apps, better security and now large-screen mobile devices, Apple is expecting the new iPhone and iOS 8 to help persuade more Android users to move up to iOS, and to that end has published a document on its website guiding switchers on how to move content from their Android device to the iPhone. The expectation isn't based on hubris: surveys have shown that at least a third of Android users would consider switching to the iPhone 6 family.

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Moto X reported to have 'Pure Edition' with stock Android onboard

09/12, 4:46pm

Unlocked, unbranded version of updated Moto X said to be on the way

Motorola will be bringing out a version of its updated Moto X with a stock installation of Android, according to a report. Just like the Google Play Edition of the original Moto X, the 2014 edition of the smartphone is said to have a "Pure Edition" on the way, with the device believed to ship unlocked, unbranded, and without any extra software typically loaded onto smartphones by carriers.

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Google launches the first wave of Android apps on Chrome OS

09/11, 5:49pm

Four Android apps brought to Chromebook operating system, more on the way

People waiting for their favorite Android applications to work on Chrome OS might not need to wait much longer. Today, Google announced the first set of Android apps available for Chromebooks. The move makes good on a demonstration from Google I/O, which teased the idea of Android apps running on Chrome OS through an app runtime.

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Briefly: Google Play refund extension, Skype for Windows Phone update

09/11, 5:42am

Google officially extends app refund window from 15 minutes to 2 hours

Google has extended the opportunity to receive a refund from purchases in the Google Play Store to two hours. Android Central notes the support page for the store has been updated to show the upgraded refund period for apps and games, up from the previous 15-minute limit. It is understood that Google offered the longer refund window to some customers over the last few weeks, and has only just made the policy official recently.

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Google Voice integration in Hangouts rolls out on Android

09/10, 11:36am

Addition to Hangouts signals impending end of Google Voice

Google Voice is being integrated into Google Hangouts on Android, in what appears to be an an attempt by the search company to streamline its messaging services. Previously only available in the iOS version of Hangouts, the Android app now gives the option of making or receiving voice calls, text messages, and the ability to access voicemails on Google Voice.

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Amazon adds Instant Video streaming to Android store app

09/09, 8:02am

Prime Instant Video requires separate app installation from Amazon appstore

Amazon has finally started to allow Android users to stream content from Amazon Instant Video. An update to the main Amazon app gives the option to view shows on the service, with the app also including the ability to browse the Amazon Appstore, though subscribers are made to complete a number of tasks in order to get Prime Instant Video streaming.

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Chromecast gets 1080p Chrome tab, Firefox Android beta streaming

09/08, 3:29pm

Update adds TV queuing for YouTube videos, Firefox for Android streams to Chromecast

A few new features have come to the Chromecast on the heels of another update to the streaming device. The recent update to the Chromecast pushes a few updates, but Google has announced additions to the beta Google Cast extension. Mozilla also revealed that it added second-screen capabilities for Firefox for Android, utilizing streaming devices like the Chromecast to do so.

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ComScore: Apple continues to gain share in US smartphone market

09/05, 8:56pm

Share gain seen coming from Android, even as new iPhones imminent

Apple continues to be the market leader in smartphones in the US, the latest three-month study from ComScore MobiLens shows. As of the end of July, the iPhone line had gained a full percentage point of share over its position in April. Arch-rival Samsung also grew its share of the US market, but by somewhat less at 0.7 percent change. Drops from other Android makers such as HTC, Motorola and LG seem to have given Apple a boost, even as the debut of new iPhones draws near.

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IFA: Panasonic displays Toughpad FZ-E1 and X1 rugged tablets

09/04, 10:15am

Similar Panasonic hardware runs Windows 8.1 or Android

Panasonic today launched what it says is one of the world's most rugged five-inch handheld tablets with data and voice capabilities at the IFA electronics show in Berlin, Germany. The Toughpad FZ-E1 with Windows Embedded 8.1 Handheld and FZ-X1 with Android share the same ruggedized hardware, and are aimed at mobile workers in transportation and logistics, public sector and emergency services, utilities, retail, manufacturing and aviation.

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IFA: Asus demos Android Wear-powered ZenWatch

09/03, 7:56am

New watch features 'premium' materials, Android Wear, wireless charging

Asus Corporate Vice President Eric Chen today went on stage at a pre-IFA 2014 event to announce the company's latest lineup of innovations, including Asus ZenWatch, the company's first wearable device produced in partnership with Google. Asus ZenWatch is the first wearable device from the company, is powered by Android Wear, and features a version of the Asus ZenUI user interface developed specifically for the product.

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Lenovo launches Tab S8 as its first Intel-based Android tablet

09/03, 5:06am

Intel Atom processor used in Lenovo Tab S8 with Burst Performance Technology

Lenovo kicked off its IFA device launches, by revealing its first Intel-powered Android tablet. The Lenovo Tab S8 uses a quad-core Intel Atom Z3745 with 2GB of RAM, with the processor's Burst Performance Technology said to help provide more processing power when it is required, in turn saving on battery life when performing lower-impact tasks.

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Google invitation to event in India may be Android One device launch

09/01, 3:04pm

Event country, timing suggests first Android One devices due this month

Google has sent out invitations to an announcement event due to be held on September 15th in India. Though not specifically hinting at a product or service, it is believed the event will involve the launch of the first Android One smartphones, a program Google introduced in June to provide low-cost Android mobile devices to emerging markets.

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Hands-on: Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5

08/31, 2:18am

Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5 delivers the best tablet display yet

As with its smartphones, Samsung has thrown everything it can at the wall when it comes to tablets to see what eventually sticks. However, even though Samsung holds the title as the largest single Android tablet maker, it hasn't made the same sort of inroads against Apple in the tablet space as it has with its Galaxy smartphones. It has launched tablets in all shapes and sizes, with multiple models and sizes targeting the low-end, middle and high-end segments making it a challenge for consumers to navigate. Its latest high-end model, the Galaxy Tab S 10.5, however, looks as though the company may finally have its formula right in its never-ending battle with Apple.

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Briefly: Wipeout 2 for iOS and Android, Spotify Connect updates

08/30, 12:04pm

Action platforming game Wipeout 2 available for iOS, Android

Activision Publishing has released its action platforming game Wipeout 2, available for iOS and Android devices, as well as for Kindle Fire. Based on the competition TV series "Wipeout," players dodge environmental hazards and challenge to complete each level as fast as possible. Players can choose from 10 playable characters, including Zombie, Pirate and Popstar, with 150 themed obstacles and 135 new levels. Free to download, Wipeout 2 is available on iTunes, Google Play and the Amazon App Store.

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Company compiles Apple's Swift for use with Android, Windows .NET

08/29, 8:37pm

Now possible to use the same language for apps for all three mobile platforms

A compiler company called RemObjects has created a new front end for its own Elements compiler called Silver that allows developers to write code hooking into APIs and frameworks outside iOS, letting them write native apps for iOS and Android. The project has also been made to work with both the Fire IDE and .NET, allowing Windows Phone developers to use Swift through the Visual Studio IDE. While not a universal write-once-run-anywhere solution, Silver could prove to be a boon for small developers who want to create Android and Windows Phone versions of their iOS apps written in Swift.

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Nokia Here maps app heading to Samsung Galaxy phones, Gear S

08/29, 1:29pm

Here mapping app for Android exclusive to Samsung

Nokia has made a deal with Samsung to provide Here Maps to its Android devices, as well as items running Tizen. Here for Android will be exclusive to Samsung's Galaxy smartphone line as a free download, while Tizen devices such as the Gear S smartwatch will be able to display maps on their small displays, as well as providing turn-by-turn navigation.

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Hands-on: OnePlus One '2014 Flagship Killer'

08/27, 7:43am

OnePlus One looks set to cause a major headache for the likes of Samsung

OnePlus is an ambitious new OEM out of China founded in late 2013 with designs on conquering the smartphone market. Its first handset is the audacious OnePlus One, which recently started shipping to the US and select European markets. Interestingly, instead of jumping into the market with a 5-inch smartphone, the company's first effort is a 5.5-inch phablet that it is marketing as a 'Flagship Killer.' With its intentions clear, is it possible for a company to come from out of almost nowhere to steal the title of most wanted Android phone from the likes of tech titans like Samsung?

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Reports of Verizon's return to app sales refuted by carrier [u]

08/20, 4:18pm

New store has to deal with complexities of multiple carriers, hardware vendors

[/strong]Updated with Verizon statement[/strong] Verizon is allegedly in discussions with other carriers and Android device manufacturers to launch its own app store. According to sources familiar with the matter, the carrier is building up the store, similar to the shuttered V Cast, as a response to reductions in revenue-sharing arrangements with Google through the Google Play store. Verizon has since denied the claims, without providing much information about the report.

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Brazilian judge orders deletion of Secret app from mobile devices

08/20, 7:30am

Apple, Google, Microsoft required to delete Secret from customer phones or face fines

A Brazilian judge has ordered Apple, Google, and Microsoft to remove Secret, an app used for anonymously sharing information with others, from citizen's phones. The unusual ruling requires both Apple and Google to delist Secret from the App Store and Google Play, with Microsoft ordered to do the same for the Windows Phone-equivalent Cryptic, as well as deleting it remotely from mobile devices in the country.

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Nabi debuts line of 20- and 24-inch kid-friendly Android tablets

08/19, 11:07am

New tablets feature curated content for children, full Android for adults

Creator of the kid-friendly Nabi tablet, Fuhu has now unveiled the Nabi Big Tab HD 20-inch and Nabi Big Tab HD 24-inch, the world's biggest Android tablets. The very large form-factor tablets are designed around "social interaction, communication, collaboration, and socialized learning," according to the company.

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Best Buy leaks specifications list for Moto 360, confirms $249 price

08/18, 5:44am

Texas Instruments processor claimed to power Moto 360

More details for the Moto 360 have surfaced, ahead of its expected launch early next month alongside two smartphones. A product listing for the Android Wear smartwatch appeared on the Best Buy website before being pulled from view, and provided not only a full list of specifications for the wearable device, but also confirmed that it will launch at $249.

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Good Technology reports jump in government, financial use of iPads

08/12, 10:34pm

Apple's iOS very slowly losing ground, but still overwhelmingly dominant in enterprise

A new report from Good Technology on enterprise mobile use has shown that Apple's iOS continues to be the overwhelmingly dominant choice of systems for corporate mobility, with some 88 percent of all business app activations and 90 percent of tablet activations on the platform. However, Android apps climbed to 12 percent of app activations, a gain of four percentage points from the previous quarter, while Android devices climbed to 32 percent of activations versus iOS' 67 percent.

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Briefly: Squarespace's Android releases, Skype for Windows updated

08/12, 7:15pm

Squarespace releases Blog and Note apps for Android

Website design platform Squarespace has released two new apps in beta format for Android users today, entitled Blog and Note. Originally launched for iOS, Blog facilitates Squarespace site management from a smartphone or tablet, and Note is a minimalist note-taking app.

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OnePlus One OTA update adds Android 4.4.4, camera app function

08/11, 8:53pm

Clear Image function in OnePlus One camera app creates composite from ten photographs

OnePlus has started to roll out an over-the-air update to the OnePlus One smartphone, upgrading the device to Android 4.4.4. The staggered rollout, which should reach all device owners by the end of this week, fixes a number of bugs in the firmware and updates Android itself to a more recent version, as well as introducing a new function to the camera app called Clear Image.

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Briefly: Square adds appointment booking, Dropbox for Android update

08/11, 7:13pm

Square register service adds appointment booking feature

Square has announced today that the register service has added an appointments feature. Square Appointments aims to manage users' appointments, and is available to all business owners -- even those who do not use Square Register -- for a free 30-day trial. Users of Appointments can request to create a booking through a web form that automatically adds itself to the shop's calendar. Pricing for the service is $30 per month for individual sellers, $50 for business owners with two to five employees, and $90 for unlimited staff usage.

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HTC A11 photographs, Windows Phone M8 specifications leak

08/11, 8:29am

Twin leaks point to two HTC smartphone launches in coming months

A pair of leaks for HTC smartphones have surfaced, for Android and Windows Phone devices. One leak includes photographs of the A11, a variant in the Desire range said to use a 64-bit system-on-chip, while another appears to reiterate earlier rumored specifications for a version of the HTC One M8 running on Windows Phone instead of Android.

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Google staring down potential Android bundling complaint in EU

08/08, 2:22pm

EU companies polled about Google's Android policies and deals

Antitrust actions against Google in Europe seem to be growing. European Union regulators have sent out questionnaires to those possibly impacted by Google's decisions about Android policies, and are requesting "any written or unwritten" exclusivity deals that the search engine giant has made with wireless carriers, developers, and other companies.

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Sony ends PlayStation Mobile Android support, no more certifications

08/06, 6:56pm

Support no longer offered as Sony transitions to content for PlayStation Vita, Vita TV

Sony announced today that it would no longer be supporting PlayStation Mobile for Android going forward. In a statement on the PlayStation Japan website, Sony outlined that support for the program ends with Android version 4.4.2 (KitKat). Users that haven't updated to Android versions past 4.4.2 will still be able to access the PlayStation store, play games and re-download titles.

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Android overtakes iOS in global online usage tracking

08/04, 1:01pm

Usage begins mirroring device ownership

For the first time, global usage of Android devices has surpassed that of iOS, according to Net Applications tracking data. iOS slipped from 45.61 percent in June to 44.19 percent in July, while Android advanced from 43.75 percent to 44.62. Windows Phone has made some more marginal progress, growing from below the 1 percent mark in April to 2.49 percent.

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Microsoft sues Samsung over unpaid Android patent royalties

08/02, 12:23pm

Samsung claiming MS/Nokia deal negates 2011 licensing agreement

Microsoft has launched a lawsuit against longtime licensee Samsung, alleging that the Korean company has stopped paying royalties for Android-related patents. According to the court filing and Samsung itself, Samsung stopped making the payments from the 2011 lawsuit-ending agreement after Microsoft entered into a deal to purchase Nokia.

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Briefly: Telltale's The Walking Dead Season 3, Blood Bowl on tablets

07/31, 5:28pm

Popular narrative-based game returns for third season, release date unknown

During last week's San Diego Comic Con, Telltale Games, the developer of narrative-based adventure games like The Wolf Among Us, announced that it would be producing a third season of its popular The Walking Dead game. Details on the next season of the title are scarce, as it was only mentioned during a panel for Skybound Entertainment, The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman's imprint. The game likely won't be out anytime soon, as the company still hasn't wrapped up season two of The Walking Dead. It's also looking to release narrative games in the same style with Tales from the Borderlands and Game of Thrones.

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Crowdfunding Critic: Oaxis InkCase Plus

07/31, 3:30pm

Campaign funds a second low power screen for Android devices

It's time for Thursday's edition of Crowdfunding Critic. Every Tuesday and Thursday here on MacNN and Electronista, we're going to look at crowd-funded projects that we find interesting. Keep in mind that we aren't specifically endorsing anything, or telling you that there aren't any risks in funding a prospective project, we're just pointing out projects we found that we like. Please do your research before investing! Today's selection brings an underused technology, E-ink, to smartphone cases -- the InkCase Plus by Oaxis.

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Long-standing Android 'Fake ID' bug gives malware root access

07/29, 9:10am

App masquerading as Flash, others, can break Android sandboxing

Mobile device researchers Bluebox Security have discovered a serious flaw in Google's Android operating system that dates back to version 2.1, and is still present (albeit weakened) in the new 5.0 preview. The "Fake ID" security flaw allows a fake app to include an invalid security certificate, claiming that it is an app with sandbox-breaking privileges, in essence, giving the malicious app root access to the phone and all its contents.

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LG shows Tab Book hybrid notebook running Android instead of Windows

07/29, 7:09am

South Korean release for combined Android notebook, tablet from LG

LG has revealed a version of its Tab Book, a combined tablet and notebook, running on Android instead of Windows 8.1. The new Tab Book 11TA740 uses an 11.6-inch Full HD IPS display which can slide up and uncover a physical keyboard, with the Android device weighing 1.05 kilos (2.3 pounds) and measuring just 16.7 millimeters (0.65) thick when used as a tablet.

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Closer look: Android L preview

07/26, 9:13pm

Android L focuses on look, feel, performance rather than features

Google's Android L preview has been made available to developers and any other interested users who own a Nexus 5 smartphone or Nexus 7 tablet. It marks the first time that Google has released an early preview of the latest version of its mobile OS, while is also the first major revamp of the Android UI since Android 4.0 'Ice Cream Sandwich,' which was released three years ago. In that time, Android has become the most widely used mobile operating system in the world. However, despite its popularity, it has slipped somewhat on the technology front with Apple iOS making the leap to 64-bit in August last year. Android L seeks to redress this by adding an all-new 64-bit runtime (ART), coupled with other system enhancements designed to improve performance and battery life.

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Gameloft early access contest for Modern Combat 5 results in piracy

07/23, 6:50pm

Publisher activates anti-piracy measures after thousands of plays turn up online

It turns out that winning an early access to game isn't enough to satisfy every fan, as mobile developer Gameloft recently learned. In a contest that gave fans access to Modern Combat 5: Blackout before its expected July 24 release date, one of the lucky winners decided to crack the game and upload it for illegal distribution. Afterward, thousands of players turned up in the game before its release on Android, iOS and Windows 8 devices.

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Microsoft updates Skype for Android, reveals Amazon Fire Phone app

07/23, 6:40pm

Skype update allows linking of phonebook with Microsoft account

Microsoft has made a few changes to Skype for Android, adding the option to connect the smartphone's address book to the service. At the same time, Microsoft has revealed it is releasing a version of the messaging app client for Amazon's Fire Phone, one which will take advantage of the smartphone's home screen and graphical effects.

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Google to battle Rockstar Consortium after judge denies dismissal

07/23, 3:49pm

Patent lawsuit over notifications asked to be tossed based on Supreme Court ruling

Google has stepped into the ring for another patent dispute in East Texas, this time involving its Android operating system, Samsung and the Rockstar Consortium. Last November, the consortium filed a complaint with the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, claiming that Samsung phones using the Android operating system infringed on seven patents that Rockstar holds. The patents in question include messaging and notification systems found on mobile devices, but Google asked to have the case thrown out.

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Briefly: Google Play Store upgrade, Cortana prepares for China launch

07/23, 5:23am

Google rolls out partial Material Design upgrade of Play Store app

Google has started to roll out its rumored changes to the Play Store, in an update to the Android app. Version 4.9.13 brings a number of smaller tweaks, reports Android Police, along with refreshed app and content pages which uses Google's Material Design rules, including an increased use of images and iconography. A future update is expected to roll out Material Design to other aspects of the store.

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Wacom's Bamboo Paper app now available for Android, Windows 8

07/22, 3:23pm

Previously released for iOS in August, turns tablets into notebook, sketchpad

Those looking for a note-taking solution or a sketchbook for Windows 8 and Android-based tablets have a new option to look at today. Wacom has expanded the availability of Bamboo Paper, adding tablets beyond the iPad, including the Kindle Fire, Surface 2 and Galaxy Tab 4, to the mix. Bamboo Paper was originally launched for iOS devices in August.

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Amazon Wallet app for storing gift cards, store cards surfaces

07/22, 2:08pm

Mobile app from Amazon stores retailer card details, no mobile payments by card yet

Amazon has quietly launched an app to help people manage gift cards and loyalty cards with stores. The Amazon Wallet app for Android and the Fire Phone is able to store membership cards for retailers on the smartphone, allowing shoppers to digitally carry all of their store cards and gift cards without having to also bring along the physical versions.

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Briefly: Twitch for Android update, Comments added to Photo Spheres

07/22, 8:06am

Twitch overhauls Android app interface, adds user profiles

Game streaming service Twitch has updated its Android app to version 3.0. The app has received a visual upgrade with an updated user interface, while the addition of user profiles provides more details about individual channels and the option to chat on channels which are not broadcasting yet. The app also allows viewers to access offline channels, an improved search, and the option to swipe between channels and users.

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Google CEO upset by Samsung investing in Tizen instead of Android Wear

07/18, 7:34am

Meeting between executives concerned Android Wear, Tizen use in smartwatches

Google is unhappy by Samsung's choice to use Tizen for its main smartwatch platform instead of Android Wear, according to a report. CEO Larry Page is said to have spent time earlier this month with Samsung Vice Chairman Jay Y. Lee in a "tense private meeting" over the smartwatch software issue, with Samsung allegedly spending more on devices running Tizen than Google's new Android offshoot.

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Amazon executive confirms Instant Video Android app on the way

07/17, 10:58am

Android Amazon Instant Video app, 4K video mentioned by marketing director

Amazon is said to be preparing to launch an Android app for Amazon Instant Video for non-Kindle Fire tablets. An executive allegedly confirmed the long-awaited app for normal Android devices is "imminent" to a report, a move which would finally bring the video streaming service in line with competitors, such as Netflix, in providing a cross-platform video streaming experience.

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Chrome 36 update improves notifications, fixes stability, performance

07/16, 4:24pm

Linux gets better Chrome App Launcher

Google has issued Chrome 36 updates for Windows, Mac, Linux, and Android users. The new version is mostly a maintenance release, making stability, performance, and security fixes. It does however implement several cosmetic changes across desktop platforms, for instance improving rich notifications with a "flatter" look, and giving Incognito mode a new tab page (below) that's cleaner and easier to read. Likewise, the Chrome App Launcher for Linux has been revamped.

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Google search results now warn iOS, Android users about Flash content

07/15, 4:02pm

Designed to save time wasted on incompatible content

Google has implemented a change to the way mobile search results are displayed, warning users if a website uses Adobe Flash. On devices running iOS or Android, results may now show a tag saying "Uses Flash. May not work on your device." Below this are links letting users "try anyway" or learn more about the problem.

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Nvidia's next Shield device rumored be an Android powered console

07/14, 3:22pm

BBC points to the newest Shield being powered by K1, utilizing same software

The BBC has learned through anonymous sources that the next iteration of the Nvidia Shield could be used to play Android and stream PC games in a new way. The rumored device looks to build on existing technology surrounding the Shield, including the use of the GeForce Experience and GameStream to stream games from a host computer powered by an Nvidia GPU.

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Google Play Store makeover image leak hints at Material Design use

07/14, 7:02am

Android L UI design appears in alleged Play Store upgrade screenshots

Google may be preparing a visual upgrade to the Play Store, if leaked screenshots are to be believed. The images, apparently taken from within the Android app, appears to show a greater emphasis on screenshots, video stills, and other graphical elements to create a large background, while the core app information and pricing details are made more apparent to the viewer via a central placement on a white background.

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Samsung relaunches Android app store, second try called 'Galaxy Apps'

07/12, 3:23pm

New offering attempts curated approach at apps for Galaxy-series devices

Samsung is rebranding its mostly quiescent app store. The Korean manufacturing giant has announced "Galaxy Apps," a new version of its app store for Android devices. The refreshed offering will be available to all users of Samsung smart devices, and will be divided into three major divisions -- best picks, top, and "For Galaxy."

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