The day has finally come, true believers. The OUYA console is real, it's on sale, and you can have one of three online retailers send one to your doorstep. The $100 gaming SoC-in-a-box got its celebrated start on Kickstarter, but as of today you don't need to be among its backers to buy one. The OUYA storefront, Best Buy, and Target are all allowing orders to go through at the moment - Gamestop and Amazon are also retail partners, but the former isn't allowing you to add the item to your cart, while the latter is showing "out of stock."
All the US and Canadian stores list the OUYA at $99.99, while UK gamers can pick it up for the same price in pounds. Read More
Believe it or don't, there were smartwatches before the Pebble and its host of contemporaries. While it's debatable that Sony's second-gen watch was the best of them, it was certainly among the most high-profile watches, and the company has returned to its old stomping grounds now that the segment has exploded. The SmartWatch 2 (stylized "SW2") includes a bigger, denser display, a revised software suite that more naturally mimics Sony's Android phones, and embedded NFC. The SmartWatch 2 will be available in September for an undisclosed price.
The hardware itself looks like a tiny Xperia phone, right down to the Android-style capacitive navigation buttons and the side-mounted power control (right where the winder on a real watch goes - nice touch). Read More
Sony is getting into the plus-sized phone game in a big way. Today they've officially announced the Xperia Z Ultra, a super-sized handset that follows the design principles of the original Xperia Z. Nearly all the specifications (with the exception of the camera) have been boosted over the current Sony flagship, starting with a downright massive 6.44-inch 1080p screen. Other highlights include a Snapdragon 800 quad-core processor clocked at 2.2Ghz, (labeled as "the world's fastest") a super-slim 6.5mm body, and a water- and dust-resistant design.
The screen is definitely the star of the show here. Sony calls it a TRILUMINOUS Display, incorporating technology from the Bravia television line, including the X-Reality video-enhancing software. Read More
When the flagship Xperia Z launched with Android 4.1, Sony promised that an update to the latest version was coming. Now they're making good: XperiaGuide reports that the Jelly Bean 4.2.2 rollout started yesterday, for at least some users of generic phones (C6603) in Spain and Hong Kong. The updated software needs to be flashed via Sony's PC Companion software. The new build is labeled 10.3.A.0.423, exactly the same as the update that started for the Xperia ZL four days earlier. XperiaBlog says that carrier-customized versions have also landed in Austria, the Czech Republic, and the Netherlands,along with an update for the generic Taiwanese model (C6603). Read More
Welcome to the roundup of the best new Android applications, games, and live wallpapers that went live in the Play Store or were spotted by us in the previous 2 weeks or so.
This edition focuses only on new games. The app roundup is coming up soon.
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widgets, which include ratings and pricing info.
Looking for the previous roundup editions? Find them here.
Tiny Token Empires
Today's roundup is presented by Tiny Token Empires from HeroCraft. This game has an interesting mix of genres: the city and empire building is reminiscent of a Civilization-style game set in 2000 B.C. Read More
Pebble smartwatch owners have been without a reliable way to receive notifications for Google instant messages since Hangouts was launched at Google I/O, at least if they rely on first-party solutions. Today's update to the official Pebble app changes that, with native support for the Hangouts app for both messages and video Hangout requests. If you've remained faithful to the older Google Talk app, it's still supported as well.
Other changes are sparse: the official changelog mentions only the standard stability tweaks and some developer-side improvements. Feedback from reviews in the Play Store are positive, and on my own Pebble unit, things are working just fine. Read More
The CyanogenMod team has announced the release candidate phase of CM 10.1 is over – the final version is going to drop later today. If your device has been getting the RC builds, you can expect a final version of this popular ROM to be waiting for you in the morning.
Devices that haven't been updated to release candidate builds up to now won't be part of this first push. That includes Tegra 2 phones and tablets, as well as some Samsung Exynos devices. The CM team will provide a status report on these devices later in the week. Read More
Need more proof that a Nexus 7 refresh is on its way? The deals are just flowing in. Adorama has knocked $50 off the price of a new 32 GB Nexus 7, bringing the beefier version of the tablet down to just $199. This price is part of a special email promotion, and it's quite lower than the $230 price point the tablet currently goes for at the site. The Nexus 7 may no longer be the peppy little device it used to be, but it's still a good deal for the money.
If you're willing to forgo a new device for a lower price, a refurbished 32GB Nexus 7 is available on eBay for $20 less. Read More
Privacy Guard, the feature formerly known as Incognito Mode for apps, will make its way into CyanogenMod starting tonight. Steve Kondik, Mr. Cyanogen himself, has merged the ability to enable Privacy Guard support into all future nightly builds. Just to be clear, this new feature is not included in the 10.1.0 RC or stable releases currently available. Only those who like to walk on the wild side are getting their hands on this feature right away.
As the former name puts quite clearly, Privacy Guard enables users to run specific apps in what is essentially an incognito mode. The option can be enabled in the App Info panel. Read More
The portable Bluetooth speaker market has exploded lately, with new offerings seemingly popping up everyday. Despite this, the guys at Killer Concepts couldn't find something that had all the features they were looking for, so, like any logical human being would, they set out to create their own. The end result was the Rocksteady XS, a speaker that claims to be "louder, clearer, and longer lasting" than the competition. The original iteration brought some interesting features to the table, including a removable/replaceable battery; it also has pause/play/forward/reverse controls directly on the front of the unit, which is something all BT speakers should offer. Read More