Seven hundred million is a big number. 700 million of almost anything is a lot, but when you're talking about users, it's the kind of number that makes investors and analysts start to drool. It's also the amount of monthly users that popular alternative messaging app WhatsApp now has, at least according to an announcement by CEO Jan Koum. For context, Facebook initialized a purchase of WhatsApp last February (finalized in October) for approximately 22 billion dollars, when the service reportedly had "only" 450 million users.
When Fuhu announced the 20- and 24-inch Big Tabs, we all kind of chuckled and gave them a pass. Surely kids would like huge tablets, right? I think so. But now things are just getting out of hand - the company just announced 32, 43, 55, and 65-inch Big Tabs. Tablets the size of TVs. It's insanity, I say.
All of the Big Tab XL models are capable of doubling as TVs (thankfully), which makes them a little more justifiable.
A messaging service is only useful so long as a certain amount of your contacts use it along with you. So we'll refrain from making jokes at BlackBerry's expense (not a small effort, mind you) or pointing you towards alternatives like Hangouts or WhatsApp. If you use BlackBerry Messenger, and your friends and/or associates do too, pointing out other options isn't going to do much for you. But here's something that will: BBM is getting Android Wear support!
There may be a major trade show happening this week, but it's still Update Wednesday. Google has updated its 'Google' app (formerly known as Search) to version 4.1. We are still digging around for new features, but we've already found a few goodies and put the APK up for your enjoyment.
First up, there's a new space in settings called "Now Cards," which - as the name suggests - gives you control over the cards Google presents to you.
AT&T has announced that it's taking the concept of rollover minutes or texts and applying it to data starting January 25th. This will only affect Mobile Share Value plans, but it will impact new and current customers alike.
The policy shift likely isn't coming out of the goodness of the carrier's heart (teehee, as if carriers have hearts). Instead, this looks like a calculated response to T-Mobile's recent decision to start rolling unused data over into the next month.
The developer dashboard has been updated, and there's some big movement this month. In the post holiday window, KitKat is up a healthy 5.2% and Gingerbread drops another 1.3%. One thing you won't see on the chart is Lollipop. Android 5.0 still hasn't hit the 0.1% threshold to be included in the data, just like last month.
The Amazon Fire Phone was never a bad phone per se, it just didn't come to market at the right price. At $199.99 with a two-year contract, the handset came in as an upstart thinking it had what it took to compete with the heavy hitters. Today, it's available at the more humbling price of $189 total.
That's not a bad deal at all for an unlocked GSM device with a 4.7-inch display, 2.2GHz quad-core processor, 2GB of RAM, and a 13MP camera, especially when you consider the lack of a contract.
You most often see MediaTek chips in budget smartphones and tablets, but they could soon be showing up in another place—your watch. The company has announced the MT2601, an ARM system-on-a-chip designed with Android Wear in mind. This isn't one of those "later this year" things either. The MT2601 is already in mass production and ready to go.