You think you know pinball, right? There are hundreds of variations on the game, thousands of themed layouts to freshen up the experience, and millions of dollars in IAPs to unlock this ball or that theme or that bonus. But PinOut is different, and the first sign is that it comes from the same guys that gave us Smash Hit, Does Not Commute, Granny Smith, and other beautifully and thoughtfully designed games: Mediocre.
Unlike what their name might make you expect, Mediocre's games are fantastic and PinOut is no exception. Somehow, the game is both dark in its environment yet vibrant with its neon colors, both retro in its music and menus yet modern with its 3D graphics and layered platforms. Read More
It's rare for our David Ruddock to call anything "absolutely stunning," let alone a blue and slightly orange phone of all things, but Samsung managed to extract that statement out of him when he had some hands-on with the Galaxy Note 7 (RIP). And David wasn't the only one to think that. So what's Samsung to do with this splendidly concocted color now that it can't market and sell it on the Note 7? Well, it's releasing it for its other flagship device, the Galaxy S7 Edge.
And it is a beaut. Behold. Read More
For years, Google's Nexus line could be counted on for one thing, an unlockable bootloader. While carriers have occasionally had limited freedom to defile customize certain models sold through their service, owners were at least free to either modify the stock software or completely replace it with custom builds.
It goes without saying people were more than a little disheartened to learn Google's second attempt to team up with US carrier Verizon lead to yet another disappointing result: the Google Pixels sold through VZW have non-unlockable bootloaders. In fact, there are at least two carriers selling non-unlockable Pixels. The other is EE Limited (formerly Everything Everywhere) in the UK. Read More
I'm sure many of you, like myself, use Google Chrome as your main browser. Chrome was built from scratch, with the exception of its engine (which was WebKit at the time), to be for the modern web. The internet is no longer a series of text-only pages with images, and Chrome was built with modern web applications and security in mind.
If you don't know, a rendering engine is the part of a web browser that displays content. Chrome and Opera use Blink, Safari uses WebKit, and so on. Firefox's engine, called Gecko, has been around for ages. In fact, it was originally developed for Netscape Navigator all the way back in 1997 to replace their existing rendering engine. Read More
Launcher app shortcuts, those neat little pop-ups for compatible apps that allow quick access to deeper app functions, are currently restricted to Android 7.1 on the Pixel phones and dev previews. As for everyone else, the tireless developer of Nova Launcher has you covered. Version 5.0 still isn't up in the public Play Store, but the beta version has been adding bits and pieces of Pixel Launcher functionality. The latest update includes the much-celebrated launcher app shortcuts. Read More
Qualcomm has announced that it plans to acquire NXP Semiconductors for $47 billion USD, including debt, which will be the largest semiconductor deal ever. NXP, for those of who don't know, is a large player in the automotive, IoT, and security chips market. For reference, its chips are behind 14 of the top 15 most-popular infotainment systems. Read More
Here's a blast from the past: Google's new phone is having trouble pairing or staying connected to Bluetooth in many cars. In 2015 we went through this with the Nexus phones on Marshmallow, and this year it's the Pixel with 7.1. Google is aware of the issue, and is actively investigating. Read More
What's waterproof, great sounding, affordably priced, and shaped like a flying saucer? The UE Roll Bluetooth speaker, which is currently on sale at BestBuy for $45, the lowest price I've seen for it yet.
The Roll is an awesome little device, with a surprising amount of punch for its size and a form factor that makes it easy to carry in a backpack or purse. I reviewed the Roll 2 earlier this year and was very impressed. It's one of my go-to speakers any time I travel due to its impressive sound, portability, and durability.
The model on sale today is the first gen Roll, but it's nearly the same device as the Roll 2. Read More
Sony just announced today that its PlayStation Vue streaming service is coming to Android TV. If you do not know what Vue is, it might just seem like another streaming option. It is actually more akin to Dish's Sling TV with live TV channels, sports networks, and HBO and Showtime across a variety of price tiers. Additionally, the "PlayStation" moniker might give the impression of requiring Sony's PlayStation 4 game console — it actually doesn't. For all of the cord cutters out there, this is just another good option in a growing market. Read More