Few people probably saw this one coming. Microsoft Windows has long faced off with Mac OS X on the desktop, and while only a distinct minority adopted Apple's platform, the conflict has captured the interest of the tech industry for years. Open source advocates have even entertained the idea that Linux desktops would one day topple Microsoft's empire. Far fewer people speculated that it would be a mobile operating system that would start to replace Windows on desktop machines.
You remember the ASUS Transformer Prime, don't you? World's first Tegra 3 device? One of the first tablets to use Ice Cream Sandwich? A name somewhat reminiscent of a Hasbro toy? Back when ASUS was still calling every machine "Eee"? For some reason, it took the indefatigable CyanogenMod team several months to get CM 10.1 (Android 4.2) ready for the metal-clad TF201, but nightly builds have finally started appearing on the download page.
Samsung is busy showing off its three Galaxy S4 variants and incredibly ugly glasses onstage in London, but one of the biggest announcements of the day was almost glossed over in the introduction of the premiere event: the much-rumored Galaxy NX. This Android-powered version of Samsung's dSLR and Micro 4/3 camera competitor is aiming to bring Android integration to the higher end of the consumer camera market. While Samsung is still talking it up at the event, at least one random YouTube user has managed to do a full video review of the device.
NVIDIA doesn't want to take any chances with its first portable gaming product. After receiving feedback from prospective customers when the initial $349 price for SHIELD was revealed, the MSRP has been lowered to $299 - a big deal for cash-scrapped gamers and hardware junkies alike. Those who have already pre-ordered the hardware will be charged the new price (with whatever funding source they specified) when it ships. NVIDIA has also officially set next Thursday, June 27th as the launch date for SHIELD.
As I was digging through the latest build of Google Play Music, I noticed something strange: lots and lots of YouTube stuff. "That's odd," I thought, "What does YouTube have to do with Play Music?"
Oh, right, music videos!
Sure enough, there's some fairly revealing text included, too:
<string name="finding_videos_for_track">Finding related videos for the track...</string> <string name="no_videos_for_track">No videos found for the track.</string> <string name="youtube_video_details_hd">%1$s | %2$,d views | HD</string> <string name="youtube_video_details_nonhd">%1$s | %2$,d views</string> <string name="youtube_video_duration_hms">%1$02d:%2$02d:%3$02d</string> <string name="youtube_video_duration_ms">%1$02d:%2$02d</string>
While listening to music, you'll be able to tell Play Music to hunt down the YouTube video for that song.
If style and power meets rugged and durable is what you're looking for in a smartphone, then you'd be hard pressed to find something that fits the bill better than Samsung's just-announced Galaxy S 4 Active. It takes almost everything that makes the GS4 great and wraps it in a water- and dust-resistant shell, bringing high-end specs to those who need a ruggedized device that can handle nearly anything that comes its way.
If you're looking for an audio-focused smartphone and some sweet speakers to use it with, have we got a deal for you. Today the AT&T website published one of its occasional package deals, a 32GB HTC One plus the Beats Audio Pill Bluetooth speaker for $99.99 together. Naturally you'll need to sign a new two-year contract with AT&T in order to take advantage of the price, but even if you don't care about the portable speaker at all, it's $100 off the base price of one of the best Android smartphones around.