Tag - Fring
Fring in the middle of Wednesday updated its free Android (Market) and iPhone (App Store) apps to officially launch group video calls. The feature lets owners of either platform make a call between themselves and as many as three others at the same time. Chats are cross-platform and will work on 3G, 4G, and Wi-Fi as long as the bandwidth can keep up.
Fring on Tuesday hoped to one-up other mobile video chat options by starting a semi-public beta for group video calling. The test lets Android and iPhone users speak to three other users in real time. It should work cross-platform and won't carry charges, a slight dig at Skype's charging for group video calls on the desktop.
Fring, the company that brought video calling to iOS, Android and some Symbian S60 smartphones, this weekend announced it has launched Dynamic Video Quality (DVQ) technology. This will optimize video bit and frame rates based on the network's bandwidth during a call instead of dropping the call altogether. A DVQ indicator symbol will pop up when network strength isn't at its best and call quality needs to be downgraded.
Google's next release of Android, better known by its Gingerbread codename, may make video chat an important staple of its design based on a leak on Monday. What may become Android 3.0 has received only a single blurry photo from a Nexus One but word that it should use the same video format as behind Gmail's feature. The technique described by Phandroid could theoretically let Android users talk to Gmail desktop owners and not just other mobile devices.
Yahoo's Americas mobile VP David Katz in a discussion today promised that it would bring a version of Yahoo Messenger with 3G or 4G video chat to smartphones. Those with an iPhone 4 as well as Android phones with front cameras, such as the Samsung Epic 4G or T-Mobile's new myTouch, will have the option of a two-way chat regardless of which network they use. It uses the same transmission format as the desktop app and should let owners make video chats between mobile and the desktop.
Apple may be stepping up the release of a camera-equipped iPad to get it out ahead of time, sources claimed on Friday. Although it only just launched in April and supplies have just caught up to demand, AppleInsider understood from a "proven" contact that the tablet was in late testing. If finished on time, it could be ready as soon as the holidays but would arrive no later than the first quarter of 2011, which ends in March.
Toshiba after months of teases confirmed its launch into the mobile tablet space through the Folio 100. The 10-inch tablet runs a heavily modified version of Android 2.2 and is one of the first major shipping devices to use NVIDIA's Tegra 2. The dual-core ARM chip is powerful enough to play 1080p over a mini HDMI output but is still efficient enough to give the tablet a meaningful, if short, seven hours of battery life.
Google today sent notice of a special event at its Mountain View campus on Thursday to unveil a "couple of cool new mobile features" that may bring video calling to Android. While the company has so far only said that mobile product lead Hugo Barra will lead the event, sources suggested Tuesday night that it may be video chat integrated with the mobile OS. A second option raised by AllThingsD may be a clone of Find My iPhone that would help Android owners track, lock down or wipe a lost handset.
Fring on Monday accused Skype of anti-competitive behavior after it blocked the use of Fring for Skype chats. The freeze came after Fring said it had to temporarily stop Skype to accommodate the load from iPhone 4 video chats. The app developer accused Skype's team of being "cowards" by not letting the service come back to Fring and of trying to "muzzle competition" by forcing users to run Skype's official app.
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Cirrus creates Lightning-headphone dev kit
Apple supplier Cirrus Logic has introduced a MFi-compliant new development kit for companies interested in using Cirrus' chips to create Lightning-based headphones, which -- regardless of whether rumors about Apple dropping the analog headphone jack in its iPhone this fall -- can offer advantages to music-loving iOS device users. The kit mentions some of the advantages of an all-digital headset or headphone connector, including higher-bitrate support, a more customizable experience, and support for power and data transfer into headphone hardware. Several companies already make Lightning headphones, and Apple has supported the concept since June 2014. http://bit.ly/29giiZj
Apple Store app offers Procreate Pocket
The Apple Store app for iPhone, which periodically rewards users with free app gifts, is now offering the iPhone "Pocket" version of drawing app Procreate for those who have the free Apple Store app until July 28. Users who have redeemed the offer by navigating to the "Stores" tab of the app and swiping past the "iPhone Upgrade Program" banner to the "Procreate" banner have noted that only the limited Pocket (iPhone) version of the app is available free, even if the Apple Store app is installed and the offer redeemed on an iPad. The Pocket version currently sells for $3 on the iOS App Store. [32.4MB]
Porsche adds CarPlay to 2017 Panamera
Porsche has added a fifth model of vehicle to its CarPlay-supported lineup, announcing that the 2017 Panamera -- which will arrive in the US in January -- will include Apple's infotainment technology, and be seen on a giant 12.3-inch touchscreen as part of an all-new Porsche Communication Management system. The luxury sedan starts at $99,900 for the 4S model, and scales up to the Panamera Turbo, which sells for $146,900. Other vehicles that currently support CarPlay include the 2016 911 and the 2017 models of Macan, 718 Boxster, and 718 Cayman. The company did not mention support for Google's corresponding Android Auto in its announcement. http://bit.ly/295ZQ94
Apple employees testing wheelchair features
New features included in the forthcoming watchOS 3 are being tested by Apple retail store employees, including a new activity-tracking feature that has been designed with wheelchair users in mind. The move is slightly unusual in that, while retail employees have previously been used to test pre-release versions of OS X and iOS, this marks the first time they've been included in the otherwise developer-only watchOS betas. The company is said to have gone to great lengths to modify the activity tracker for wheelchair users, including changing the "time to stand" notification to "time to roll" and including two wheelchair-centric workout apps. http://bit.ly/2955JDa
SanDisk reveals two 256GB microSDXC cards
SanDisk has introduced two 256GB microSDXC cards. Arriving in August for $150, the Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Premium Edition card offers transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s for reading data. The Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card can read at a fast 100MB/s and write at up to 90MB/s, and will be shipping sometime in the fourth quarter for $200. http://bit.ly/294Q1If
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE