Google buys a lot of companies, and the deals don't always make a lot of sense from the outside. However, the acquisition of messaging client Emu totally jives with Google's priorities lately. Emu uses context clues in your messages to automate actions—sound familiar?
Last night, YouTube received what looked like a substantial update v5.9, and, of course, I rushed to start digging through the APK in hopes of finding all sorts of under-the-hood changes. Imagine my excitement when I saw the following new string buried, among other things, inside res/strings.xml:
Music Pass! Onboarding! Tutorial! Video!!one1 Of course, I clicked it. Did you?
Wait, don't. Because you'll get rickrolled, just like I did.
If you're a Google Shopping Express user, you may have recently received an email requesting that you participate in a survey about the service. Among the questions were many about pricing, including one which displayed the following chart detailing plan pricing options for the quasi-beta delivery system. The survey asks, essentially, if you'd be OK with this sort of cost structure - $90 per year (or $8 a month) for unlimited free "regular" and alcohol deliveries over $15, and $8 per order (rather than per store) of refrigerated goods under $150.
Kickstarter projects appear in any number of shapes and sizes. FreeWavs smart earphones come in at the small end of things. These wireless buds aim specifically at the more active people among us who are tired of cables getting tangled and holding them back, their adrenaline-pumping heavy metal music drowning out the environment around them, and having to carry around so many gadgets to monitor their fitness levels. Now the project has narrowly managed to reach its $300k Kickstarter funding goal with just a day remaining, gathering pledges from over 1,400 people.
Earlier today, someone decided to post to the Android issue tracker complaining about the lack of multiuser support for smartphones. Within a few hours, a developer at Google responded and closed the issue, remarking that "the development team has implemented this feature and it will be available as a part of the next public build." Sounds pretty definitive to us.
The "next public build" is the only ambiguous part of this statement, though that Googler is almost definitely referring to the "L" release of Android scheduled to land some time later this year.
The HTC One M8 is one of the more desirable Android phones available at the moment, and if you're looking to find a good deal on one, "qualitycellz" (may not a be a real name) is happy to oblige on eBay. The seller has at least a few refurbished AT&T-branded One M8 models going for $449.99, a full $220 off of the new retail price at AT&T. You can have any color you want, so long as you want silver.
The rumors that Sprint was moving on from the Hesse era were true. After seven years at the helm of the Now Network, Dan Hesse is stepping aside so Sprint's parent company SoftBank can bring in someone new. Its choice is Marcelo Claure, the founder and current CEO of SoftBank subsidiary Brightstar.
We've been wondering when conventional watchmakers would jump into the smartwatch game. Timex, a company that's no stranger to advanced wrist-mounted functionality, appears to be the first. They've adapted some of the technology first seen in the Qualcomm Toq developer device into the IronMan One GPS+. This watch combines the features of GPS watches that have been popular with runners and bikers for years with typical "smartwatch" functions like email alerts and an MP3 player.
Users of Pushbullet are getting some new stuff today, but not all of them. Today's update is to the Firefox extension, which has fallen behind the Chrome add-on recently. The new v23 extension for Firefox brings it up to par with the Chrome version and makes it a bit prettier.