There comes a point in any phone's life when it just wants to put its futon a couch and rest for the night. It has worked an entire day and it deserves to be a lazy boy after all those tweets, messages, photos, calls, and the millions of other things you made it do. If you have no Ikea what I'm talking about, you should go check out Phoniture, seriously, you otto-man. It may look like a regular couch stand for your phone, but trust me, it gets way bedder.
It's a wireless Bluetooth speaker, a microphone, and a cradle. There are a bunch of cables involved and the detachable ottoman's battery life only lasts 3.5 hours for Bluetooth music playback — you can't escape these two deap-seated problems.
After a long period of fundraising and secretive planning, Jet.com has officially launched to the general public. Founded by Quidsi founders and former Amazon employees, the new retailer values one thing over everything else: have the lowest prices on the web and be the lowest by a noticeable margin. While that may sound like the same thing everyone promises, Jet.com has a truly interesting way of making it happen. If Amazon is the Wal-Mart of e-commerce, Jet.com will be more like the Costco.
Check out the YouTube video above for a quick rundown of how it all works. First of all, Jet.com will be a members-only venture.
Sony is ready to take its Android phones to the next Lollipop level. The company is sticking to its previous word that the Z series devices will start getting Android 5.1 in July and is starting the roll-out today with the Z3 and Z2 series. So consider yourself lucky if you have an Xperia Z3, Z3 Compact, Z3 Tablet Compact, Z2, or Z2 Tablet, because you're among the first Sony owners to get Android 5.1... well, if we don't count the GPE Z Ultra.
You'll obviously get all the benefits of Android 5.1, like better volume control and plenty of design and usability tweaks, but Sony has also added a few improvements to its own software.
It's one thing to claim you have an open approach and another thing to make it easier to use your competitor's product. Google is putting their money where their mouth is as they release a Google Drive plug-in for Microsoft Office, though there is still some work to do. While on one hand you can see this as a way to help users avoid Docs, Sheets, and Slides, it also provides feature parity with Drive's own competitors OneDrive and Dropbox, both of whom enjoy deep integration with the office suite.
At this point, the plug-in only works on Windows and users are reporting that it doesn't function on the Office 2016 pre-release versions which will launch very shortly alongside Windows 10.
Vertical videos are terrible for many reasons, but we may have to come to terms with the fact that people just won't stop recording videos vertically. This inescapable foible of humanity is made slightly less galling by a new feature in YouTube 10.28 (which you can grab from APK Mirror). Vertical videos are now displayed properly (i.e. vertically) when made full screen - something we didn't quite notice until today.
The Galaxy S6 Edge may be the prettiest and most futuristic device ever made by Samsung. The two things that really set it apart from the normal S6 are the sexy curved screen on the front, and the sizeable price bump of $100 or more.
Today though, you can pick up the S6 Edge for considerably less than a standard S6. Ebay has the unlocked AT&T version of the S6 Edge on sale for the lowest ever price of $599, a full $70 less than the last time we posted about it. Cheaper and sexier? Nice.
Being unlocked, this device will work just fine on AT&T and T-Mobile as well as many other GSM carriers.
Pixate is a tool that helps designers prototype native mobile applications without pulling their hair out. Now it's a part of Google.
The first immediate impact of this acquisition is that Pixate Studio is now free to use. You can go download the software to a Windows PC or Mac right away to create interfaces for your Android or iOS device. Then, if you want to share your prototypes with teammates online, Pixate's new cloud plan goes for $5 a month or $50 a year. The desktop software integrates seamlessly with cloud accounts.
The app updates from the last week seem to be all about where you are, where you've been, and where you're going. It has only been a few days since Google Play services 7.8 began rolling out with a couple of location-related bits hidden inside, and now a new version of Maps is hitting the scene with a host of new features centered around our location history. We can now look back through the places we've visited, when we were last at certain spots, and the routes we've taken.
Nokia, in their continuing withdrawal from the mobile phone and software industry, appears close to selling off their best remaining asset in that market: HERE Maps. According to a report by Bloomberg, Nokia will sell their mapping technology and know-how to Germany's three biggest automakers, BMW, Audi (owned by Volkswagen), and Mercedes-Benz. Though they typically compete against one another, each shares common concerns about Google's market position and privacy policies.
The report estimates the asking price of HERE to be nearing $4 billion USD, though the final offer may be closer to $2.5 billion. While that sounds like a big number, HERE is a product of Nokia's acquisition of NAVTEQ for $8.1 billion in 2008.
Don't think I'll find where a show is available online? Just watch me. There's an app or two for that, and now that JustWatch has brought its search engine to Android and iOS, there's another one. And it's capable of searching through Amazon Instant Video, Crackle, HBO Now, Hulu, iTunes, Netflix, Play Movies, PlayStation, Showtime, Vudu, Xbox, and a couple other online streaming services.
JustWatch's grid layout looks like those of the services it interacts with, and it feels like a natural companion, like the modern-day equivalent of a TV guide. You can create a watchlist without having to create an account or provide any credentials.