Sunday, March 31, 2013
Those of you using Skype in Windows 8 will be happy to know that Microsoft's just bumped the app to version 1.6. It's been a few months since the last update, and this revision brings more features to the table, including contact blocking and a slew of performance tweaks. You're now able to block users, with an option to remove or report the offending party. Speed and reliability have been improved, especially when loading contacts, and a number of bugs have been fixed, including one where the outgoing video was not always displayed after switching cameras. The update's available in Windows Store, so what are you waiting for
SOURCE: Skype Blogs
When constructing computer circuits, most folks start with silicon and metal, but not the researchers at Stanford. The boffins in Palo Alto want to build computers out of living tissue, and to that end they've created a biological transistor, called the transcriptor. Transcriptors substitute DNA for semiconductors and RNA for the electrons in traditional transistors -- essentially, the transcriptor controls the flow of a specific RNA protein along a DNA strand using tailored combinations of enzymes.
Friday, March 29, 2013
BMW announces compatibility with four new iOS apps, removable in-car LTE router, we go hands-on Hands-on
announced iOS integration for Audible, Glympse, Rhapsody and TuneIn Radio and we couldn't help but swing by to check them all out. This integration (which also will work on Connected Minis) entails an update to those existing iOS apps. In other words, you won't need a dedicated BMW app nor second versions of these individual apps. You can use the ones you already know and love.
Join us below for a little more information on how that works, and a look at the company's in-car LTE router that's also on display.
It’s only been six months since cloud data warehousing companyTreasure Data launched its services, but they’re already reporting some impressive growth figures. Treasure Data achieved month-to-month profitability last year, and they’re well on track to achieve a 500 percent increase in revenue this year. They’ve also amassed 50 high-profile clients, which include a leading social gaming company, a mobile advertising platform based in France, and some other Fortune 500 companies – unsurprisingly, Treasure declined to name names.
We weren't kidding about that influx of FCC filings: the Verizon edition of Samsung's Galaxy S 4, the SCH-i545, has passed through the US regulator's approval right on cue. The device on display ticks all the checkboxes we'd expect, including LTE on both Verizon's main 700MHz band and the carrier's recently acquired AWS frequencies.
Hang around in the tech industry long enough and you or someone you know will be heard saying, “that’s so crazy it just might work.” Two years ago, if you’d have told me that an open-source, P2P currency would soon be a thriving, billion-dollar market, I would’ve told you that you were on a lonely bus headed to CrazyTown, U.S.A. But today, Bitcoin officially became a crazy idea that’s actually working.
Facebook just invited press to an event at its headquarters on April 4th to “Come See Our New Home On Android”. Sources tell us it will be a modified version of the Android operating system with deep native Facebook functionality on the homescreen that may live on an HTC handset. The evidence aligns to say this is the Facebook Phone announcement people have been speculating about for years.
I’ve long believed that touchscreens leave a certain something to be desired when it comes to playing games, and if a new (and very curious) report holds true, Apple may feel the same way. According to PocketGamer.biz’s Jon Jordan, Apple has been meeting with developers on-site at this year’s Game Developers Conference in San Francisco to talk about a forthcoming Apple game controller.
With the 2013 season looming just around the corner, it's only natural for Major League Baseball to make sure its various applications on different platforms are all ready to go come this weekend. And as it did with MLB.tv on Xbox Live a couple days ago, MLB's now also updated the At Bat Android and iOS apps, leaving behind the spring training features from last month and making room for ones that are tailored for this year's Opening Day and forward.
Back when the Razer Edge pre-orders kicked off, on March 1st, the company wasn't quite clear as to when exactly the device would commence shipping to early adopters, only going as far as saying it would be later that very month.
Constant, close contact with your friends. That’s the promise of a “Facebook phone.” The modified Android OS and mobile homescreen replacement that sources tell us Facebook will unveil April 4th pushes your social life to you so fetching it isn’t interruptive. The news feed brought us ambient intimacy, but Facebook’s homescreen could turn that social graph awareness into a sixth sense.
Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Oracle continues on its acquisition trail to build out a more full-service operation targeting the carrier market. Today it announced that it would acquire Tekelec, a provider of network signaling, policy control, and subscriber data management solutions. It says it plans to integrate Tekelec’s solutions into its Communications portfolio, and specifically with products from Acme Packet, a business that specialises in so-called session border control solutions, to help transfer packets of data securely across IP networks.
Monday, March 25, 2013
Back in August 2011, CyanogenMod founder Steve Kondik was hired by Samsung due to the man’s expertise of the Android platform and its customization powers. However, after only a year-and-a-half on the job, Kondik has decided to leave the company, but not before sharing some thoughts on Samsung’s new GALAXY S 4. His words were mostly praises, but he created a little thunder when talking about the company’s TouchWiz user interface.
General Motors is set to unveil the new 2014 Cadillac CTS during the 2013 New York Auto Show. The New York Auto Show is the next major auto show to be held in the United States. We’ve known for a while that vehicle would make its official debut at the show and GM has already offered up information on its new V-6 engine that will find its weight under the hood.
Earlier this month, Digg announced plans to build a replacement to Google Reader after the search giant revealed plans to shut down the service on July 1. Many people were excited for Digg, but were they really going to come through with an alternative? It turns out the company is pretty serious about it and has revealed further plans for its Google Reader replacement.
This week the folks at Sony Mobile Communications have ushered in the Xperia ZL for a full United States release, making sure to note that it is their most compact 5-inch offering ever. In fact, they make sure to say that this 5-inch display-toting beast is the most compact 5-inch smartphone in the world, coming complete with a 13 megapixel camera on the back and powered by their lovely Mobile BRAVIA Engine under the hood. What’s that mean for you? It means the best Sony-made smartphone ever pushed to the USA is on it’s way now!
Windows Phone Blue, Microsoft’s upcoming update for Windows Phone 8, popped a minor leak over the weekend, but now Tom Warren over at the Verge has had a chance to go hands-on with an early version of the new OS version. The key features appear to be smaller Live Tiles, like those introduced with Windows Phone 8, as well new UI features and more built-in apps. Microsoft is said to be adopting a strategy of more frequent, smaller updates to Windows instead of waiting years between more dramatic changes.
As a result of the hiring of a new chief marketing officer back in November, HTC has said that they’re dropping their “Quietly Brilliant” slogan and will be ramping up its marketing efforts by becoming more aggressive as competition gets more heated. The company is said to become more outgoing with its marketing and advertising campaigns.
LinkedIn’s New Search Aims For More Engagement With Autocomplete, Unified Results And Improved Alerts
Professional social network LinkedIn today is announcing an upgrade to its search features — one of the first big overhauls that the search function has had in years, with new features including improved autocomplete and suggested phrasing by way of a new algorithm; unified searches across different product categories; and an improved ability to save searches.
Telecommuting isn’t anything new. Many companies around the world allow employees to work from home, but a new initiative from one Congressman in particular calls for the ability for Congressmen and Congresswomen to attend hearings, debates, etc. from their home districts, without having to fly out to Washington DC every time.
Continuing its investment in original content, Amazon today announced it is greenlighting “Zombieland,” a new comedy series based on the Columbia Pictures movie of the same name, which will be made available for free to Amazon Instant Video and LOVEFiLM UK subscribers. This is the seventh original comedy series added to Amazon Studios’ lineup, which also includes six children’s pilots, previously announced.
Perhaps poor marketing is holding back Wii U sales for Nintendo. As Spike TV’s GTTV host Geoff Keighley noted on Twitter, a new campaign from Nintendo is using flyers to show just how awesome the Wii U is.Except, instead of going after console rivals Nintendo decided to aim its attack at its own, older-generation console the Wii. To be fair, the Wii is probably the strongest competitor to the Wii U, yet the consoles treat gaming very differently. The Wii is a family, group console, bringing people together, while the Wii U essentially lets you take your single-player game where ever you want, even if a family member wants to watch a movie with you.
Windows Blue is a case in point: it suggests a relatively incremental update to Windows 8, yet some of its revelations are already causing quite a stir. Neowin now reports that Internet Explorer 11, as contained within the leaked build, identifies itself to host websites as "Mozilla... like Gecko." Confusing, right? Perhaps, but it's not really as underhand as it sounds, as you can see from the full line of code in the picture above.
As for us, we were lucky to finally get some quality one-on-one time with the Samsung Galaxy S4 and run a few proper tests. We were impressed at the announcement event, and the S4 looks quite comfortable with the weight of expectations. But millions of people will settle for nothing less than the ultimate upgrade, and the stakes are rarely higher than that.
Monday, March 11, 2013
Mere days before Samsung unveils its newest phone, a Chinese forum post has offered some purported shots of the Galaxy S IV. Now it's worth mentioning from the outset that Samsung plays a good game of subterfuge. It masked the Galaxy S III ahead of its reveal last year in a blockier plastic frame and it could be that this phone, with a very Note-esque face and outline, is also a filler ahead of the final reveal.
Just when we had gotten used to the idea that the PS Vita's price drop in Japan would not be followed by a similar one here, Joystiq reports many Sony stores are offering the 3G bundle at a discount. While not all the stores contacted had the lowered $199 price, most of the ones that were still open at this hour did.
MC10 might be best known for its wearable electronics aimed at athletes, but the company also makes a medical diagnostic sticker called a biostamp. Its creator (and MC10 co-founder), John Rogers has refined that design so that it's no longer an elastomer sticker -- now he can apply the biostamp's thin, stretchy electronics directly on human skin, and bond it with commercially available spray-on bandage material.
Sunday, March 10, 2013
If the diminutive Optimus L3II is too small for you, and the L7II too big, today's porridge could be just right: LG's Optimus L5II is now available. Following in the footsteps of L3II, this 4-inch dual-SIM smartphone will make its debut in Brazil, eventually trickling out to unspecified markets in Central / South America, Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. The handset's 1Ghz processor and 512MB of RAM will be powering Jelly Bean of course (Android 4.1.2, specifically), layered in the latest LG UX specific tweaks: Quick Button and Safety Care. The launch of the L Series II's middle child rounds out the second generation lineup, leaving LG to focus on matching the previous generation's sales record. Looking for the official details? Read on for the full press release.
This coming week, we’re likely to get a peek at Samsung’s next generation Galaxy flagship smartphone, and by most accounts, it’ll have an auto-scrolling feature that can use head movement cues to detect when you’re paying attention to what’s on the small screen, and when you look away. There’s no word on just how specific it will be, but others are prepping tech that detects eye movement with a high level of accuracy to determine not just when someone’s facing a screen, but also where exactly their attention is focused.
Since launch just a few weeks ago, email management app Mailbox has been a pretty big hit — so big that more than 1.25 million people have signed up for the waiting list. The downside to that early success is that new users are added to a waiting list as Mailbox tries to keep up with demand. The company has processed about 500,000 applications so far, but it expects the number of people on the waiting list to increase according to its current growth curve.
The CEO of both Tesla and SpaceX, Elon Musk, took the stage yesterday at SXSW to discuss several things, including a couple of new projects SpaceX is working on. SpaceX is currently working on building rockets that are reusable. The rockets are what Musk says is one of the roadblocks that is holding back humanity from the future of space travel. The cost of making the one-time use rockets is what’s stopping many businesses from joining the industry.
There’s no doubt that Facebook is the most popular social network around, even if teens are losing interest in the service. Facebook has announced that its 1 billion+ users have shared over 400 billion open graph actions back to the social network so far, a number that many Facebook marketers love to see. These figures were announced prior to its event being held at South by Southwest (SXSW).
Elie Bursztein, a Google developer, reported several vulnerabilities in Apple’s App Store that could lead to extreme privacy breaches and attacks on users. The reports, made back in July 2012, led Apple to enable HTTPS for its App Store. By having HTTPS on, users are protected from the various types of attacks that Bursztein pointed out. It also helped that Bursztein made the attack codes public in order to light a fire under developers to enable HTTPS for their apps.
A Seattle dive bar has decided to ban the use of Google Glasses at its location. The bar, called 5 Point Cafe, says that the use of Google Glass in its bar would be a violation of its customers’ privacy. Dave Meinert, the owner of 5 Point Cafe, stated that “People want to go there and be not known… and definitely don’t want to be secretly filmed or videotaped and immediately put on the internet.”
The term "phablet" has always been, at best, a relative descriptor. It kicked in with the release of the original Galaxy Note even though the voice-enabled Dell Streakhad beaten that product to market. And while the portmanteau raises the question of whether there is any meaningful difference between a phone and tablet other than size, all it means is "a big phone."
We've seen plenty of the upcoming BlackBerry Q10 at this point, but some new images of what looks to be an early developer unit have surfaced. The images show the black Q10 but oddly it has a rubberized battery door that is more similar to the that of the BlackBerry Z10. We've seen (and fondled) the Q10 multiple times now and never seen a battery door like this, so we don't expect that it will show up anywhere unless it gets offered up as a third-party replacement for the OEM door.
(Reuters) - Iranian authorities have blocked the use of most "virtual private networks", a tool that many Iranians use to get around an extensive government Internet filter, Iranian media quoted an official as saying on Sunday. A widespread government Internet filter prevents Iranians from accessing many sites on the official grounds they are offensive or criminal.
Saturday, March 9, 2013
If Google is awarded the right to manage the domain registrations for .search, .app, .blog and .cloud, there is now a good chance that it won’t just use them for its own services and will open them up for non-Google properties, too. Last year, when ICANN opened up the first phase of the registration process for new generic top-level domain names, Google accounted forabout 100 of the over 1,900 applications ICANN received.
After months of speculation that its backer Jabbar Internet Group were shopping around for a sale, the leading Middle Eastern daily deals site Cobone has been acquired by investment firm Tiger Global Management. The size of the deal remains undisclosed, though my understanding is that the figure of $40 million that’s been touted building up to this sale isn’t far off the mark.