WhatsApp has come a long way since its origins as an instant messaging client in 2009. By this time 2013, over 300 million people were running the app, and that was before Facebook decided to pay $19 billion for the service. By the beginning of this year, it had reached 700 million. Read More
Seven hundred million is a big number. 700 million of almost anything is a lot, but when you're talking about users, it's the kind of number that makes investors and analysts start to drool. It's also the amount of monthly users that popular alternative messaging app WhatsApp now has, at least according to an announcement by CEO Jan Koum. For context, Facebook initialized a purchase of WhatsApp last February (finalized in October) for approximately 22 billion dollars, when the service reportedly had "only" 450 million users.
WhatsApp still hasn't caught on in North America, at least not to the extent that it has in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. Read More
If you're a fan of the CyanogenMod family of custom Android ROMs, then you're in extremely good company. According to CyanogenMod's official statistics page, the ROM and its derivatives are now running on just over 10 million Android phones and tablets. Those statistics come from CyanogenMod users who voluntarily report activity via the built-in CMStats function, so the actual number of devices could be higher. CyanogenMod's head honcho and Cyanogen Inc. CTO Steve Kondik announced the news on Google+.
A few things to note: these numbers are for devices, not users, since one user with multiple smartphones or tablets running CyanogenMod will be counted twice. Read More
Samsung's ChatON comes pre-installed on a good number of the world's Android devices, and while many of you would take that as reason alone to overlook the app, a good number of other people take the time to check it out. 100 million, apparently. Samsung's happy to announce that its instant messaging platform has doubled the number of users it had back in May. Their excitement is understandable, considering the app first launched in October of 2011. Suffice to say, it took much longer to get the first 50 million users than the second.
ChatON comes pre-installed on most Galaxy devices, and given how Samsung has been selling these devices like gangbusters, a solid number of Android users lay eyes on the app icon at least once, even if they never give it more than a passing glance. Read More
Update: The update is now live in the Store – find it by hitting the widget at the end of the post.
Last month, Google announced they'd be killing off Google Reader this July. Yes, in just a couple of short months, one of the most beloved RSS resources in existence would be kaput. Google says it decided to pull the plug because of dwindling use numbers. While there were plenty of discussions about Google's real motivation (everything from well-reasoned examinations of the situation to cries of "EVIL!"), there was something more important happening behind the outcry – there were people stepping up to fill the gap in as seamless and timely a fashion as possible. Read More
Recently, Google quietly began to test auto translation for app reviews in the developer console. Today, the company publicly announced that same feature and began rolling it out to all devs. Now, when they log in to their control panel, they can see the reviews in their preferred language, along with the original text. Neat.
Of course, this still isn't a replacement for native fluency, but it should aid developers in troubleshooting problems that users on the other side of the language barrier discover. This, coupled with replies to reviews, enables a high degree of communication between devs and users, which can only be a great thing. Read More
YouTube announced something fairly incredible yesterday: it now has more than 1 billion unique visitors to the site every single month. That's a LOT of people, almost half of everybody around the world with internet access, in fact.
What's even more interesting is how people are reaching the site. A post on Google's AdWords Agency blog took a look at how the current generation, or 'Generation C', accesses content on YouTube, and found that a lot of the traffic is coming from smartphones, as opposed to traditional PCs. When looking at the current generation, they found a 76% increase in smartphone traffic, year-on-year, with only a 33% increase in traffic from desktops. Read More
Winning a $450 bounty and the hearts of Droid RAZR/MAXX users, Dan Rosenberg has found a successful root method for the phone's 4.1 JellyBean OTA, which began rolling out last Christmas Eve.
Some readers are likely familiar with Mr. Rosenberg's work, as he's rooted everything in sight from the Droid RAZR/MAXX HD to the RAZR M, all the way back to the LG Spectrum. As a security researcher, he's even given (and published) a helpful presentation on rooting and modding for the security conscious.
Not only can Droid RAZR/MAXX owners now root their Jelly Bean powered handsets, they can do it with ease – the process is as simple as connecting the phone and running a .bat file. Read More
Android 4.2 is here, and with it comes proper support for multiple users on tablets. According to Cam, it's easy to setup and intuitive to use, too. Unfortunately, it doesn't work on phones at this point (presumably because of a Nokia patent).
At this point, we do have to address the pink elephant in the room here: it's likely you don't have 4.2 yet. And if the Android Platform Distribution numbers are any indication, most devices probably won't get 4.2 until mid-2014. Read More