Would it surprise you to know I've only ever owned three of Google's Nexus phones? I bought the Nexus One for AT&T back in 2010, received a Nexus 5 as a holiday bonus from Artem (he gave one to everybody on the team) in 2013, and bought an AT&T Nexus 6 in 2014. While the Nexus One will always be the phone I remember as my first smartphone, it wasn't actually a great smartphone, and the Nexus 5 and I didn't really have much of a chance to connect / for me to by annoyed by it (I broke it a few months after receiving it). Read More
Sony Mobile, despite its lackluster presence here for the past few years, is gradually re-entering the US market. The Japanese company's latest flagship, the Xperia XZ, went up for pre-order a little over a week ago, and it's now available for purchase. Unfortunately, at $700, I don't see the XZ helping Sony's dwindling smartphone business much. Read More
A few days ago, Garmin announced its newest wearable for kids: the vivofit jr. Despite the name being in lowercase, it sounds like a pretty neat device. Garmin claims that it is water-resistant, comfortable, durable, and that it has more than a year's worth of battery life. Like other fitness trackers, the vivofit jr. will monitor the child's steps, sleep, and physical activity. Read More
Meerkat might be the app that started the live-streaming on phones trend. Released early last year, it quickly rose in popularity - even to the point of dominating that year's SXSW conference. But alas, Meerkat was not long for this world, and has officially been taken offline.
Life on Air, the company behind Meerkat, announced the shutdown on Twitter two days ago. The official reason for Meerkat's demise is for the company to focus on Houseparty, a group chatting application. Co-founder of Life on Air, Ben Rubin, spoke to TechCrunch about the shutdown: Read More
The Text-to-speech app doesn't see many major updates throughout the year, but when it does, there's often something interesting to see. Version 3.10 began rolling out yesterday and it comes bearing a pair of new settings to intelligently alter volume based on existing audio playback and to control the intonation of synthesized voices. As always, we've got a link below to grab the latest apk if you aren't among the first to get it straight from Google. Read More
It may have taken an extraordinarily long time, but OnePlus is finally sending out stable Marshmallow OTAs to the OnePlus X, the company's budget phone, in the form of OxygenOS 3.1.2 (and now 3.1.3). Although OnePlus did begin offering Marshmallow in the form of the OxygenOS 3.1.0 Community Build over a month ago, it had a few bugs that needed to be weeded out. At last, 6.0.1 is ready for prime time on the X. Read More
The Dolphin emulator is an impressive feat of software engineering. Starting as a GameCube emulator, it later added compatibility for Wii games, due to the similar architecture. Over the years, Dolphin has gradually improved game compatibility; they recently reported that every single retail GameCube game boots. Even accessories like the Wii Remote and Wii Balance Board work perfectly, and experimental Android builds of Dolphin have been in development for years.
Dolphin on Android still isn't as usable as other console emulators, but the fault mostly lies with current Android hardware. Even the Nvidia Shield console, one of the most powerful Android devices on the market, can't run games at full speed. Read More
It's no secret that Android is heavily integrated with Google search. Google Now (soon to be Google Assistant) is the primary voice assistant, and Google search is included on every device with the Google Play Store. According to Reuters, Google also pays device manufacturers to keep Google as the only search application on Android devices, and the European Union isn't thrilled.
EU antitrust regulators are ordering Google's parent company, Alphabet, to cease providing incentives to keep Google search installed exclusively on Android devices. A 150+ page EU document outlines the issue, stating that Google "cannot punish or threaten" manufacturers for not complying with its conditions. Read More
Although the HTC 10 is quite a nice flagship, many laughed at the Taiwanese company for pricing it at $699. However, HTC's website is now offering the 10 in any carrier model and any color for $549. That's $150 off MSRP, and it makes the 10 a much more compelling buy. Read More