22
Aug
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The newest incarnation of Gameloft's racing franchise, Asphalt 8: Airborne has hit Google Play. In addition to the standard race mechanics, this title will encourage players to pull off high-speed aerial stunts. Yeah, it is not a terribly realistic racing game.

Gameloft is really piling on the pretty with this one. The environments are huge, and there are more reflections and lighting effects than you can shake a gear shift at.

22
Aug
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The QWERTY-equipped smartphone is a dying breed. The LG Enact is the only one running Android that has come to Verizon all year, and it's not exactly looking to set the world on fire. After a pair of leaks, it's now available on Big Red for $19.99 with a two-year contract or $349.99 unsubsidized.

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What can twenty bucks get you? Aside from the slide-out keyboard, you get a 4-inch, 800x480 LCD screen, a 1.2Ghz dual-core Snapdragon 400 CPU, 8GB of storage plus whatever you put in the MicroSD card, a 5MP rear camera, and a skinned version of Android 4.1.

22
Aug
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HTC fans who prefer Verizon (or who have no choice), your long wait is over. After months of rumors and teases, the HTC One flagship is finally available on Verizon, the last of the four major American carriers to get the phone. It turned up on the Verizon web store early this morning right on schedule for $199.99 on-contract, or $599.99 if you want it "free" and clear.

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Verizon's One is identical to those on AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint, except for the obvious CDMA and LTE radio bands.

22
Aug
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After an eye-popping pitch for a futuristic, dual-booting smartphone-desktop hybrid, the Ubuntu Edge secured the world record for crowdfunding on August 15th, with $10,266,845 pledged. It's since been boosted up to $12.8 million, but unfortunately, that's a far cry from the $32 million that the Canonical company asked for. The Indiegogo campaign has failed, no sponsors will be charged, and no money will be collected.

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Say what you will about Canonical and founder Mark Shuttleworth's outlandish goal, but the conceptual hardware and software for the Ubuntu Edge is the stuff that smartphone dreams are made of.

21
Aug
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Anyone who played video games in the late 80s and early 90s probably lost at least one frustrating afternoon to the original Contra. This run-and-gun shooter was the archetype for innumerable games that were to follow. Now Contra has been spruced up and deployed in Google Play to taunt you all over again.

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For anyone who hasn't experienced Contra, it's a (mostly) side-scrolling shooter with a ton of power ups and no mercy whatsoever.

21
Aug
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There is a new Google Search update rolling out, and it's bringing a bunch of new functionality to Google Now. There are new cards for car rentals, concert tickets, commute sharing, NCAA football, updated transit, new TV info, and better reminders. It's like we're drowning in cards here.

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21
Aug
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The Chrome team is pushing out an update to all the good little Chromecasts of the world. This one doesn't come with any changes to the UI or new features, but it does promise to improve the stability for Google Play Movies playback, and should make Chromecast devices discoverable on more networks. You won't need to do anything to get this installed on your end, the OTA will automatically download and install when it's your turn.

21
Aug
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Mozilla UI Engineer Lucas Rocha, in a post to his blog earlier today, announced Firefox's "biggest UI change … since [its] first native release back in June last year."

The UI update, Rocha explains, includes a completely redesigned and rewritten Awesomescreen, which combines the interactive and functional aspects of the start page and the old Awesomescreen into one page with super-smooth swipable tabs. For those who aren't familiar with Mozilla's mobile browser, the Awesomescreen allows users to quickly get a handle on their bookmarks and browsing history.

21
Aug
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EA isn't letting its mega mobile racing franchise stagnate. The latest update to Real Racing 3 is version 1.3, adding iconic muscle cars from Dodge and Shelby. Four cars have been added to the roster: the 1969 Dodge Charger RT, 1971 Dodge Challenger RT, 1966 Shelby AC Cobra 427 (I think - going by a screenshot and some Wikipedia sleuthing), and the 1967 Mustang Cobra GT500.

According to the What's New text, there are also new events, new difficulty settings, tweaks to car physics and cameras, and "additional social networking options." Posters on the FireMonkeys developer forum say that means Google+ integration, as a G+ sign-in option has been added to the Settings page.

21
Aug
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Motorola hasn't been shy with the apps as of late. They've published a handful of new ones in the last few weeks, most of which are exclusive to the multi-carrier Moto X and the new family of DROIDs for Verizon. The Skip app went live just a few hours ago, but the latest is possibly the phones' most visible feature, Touchless Control. It lets the new Motos react to voice while the phone screen is off with the command "OK Google Now."

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Don't get excited: the app is absolutely and emphatically only for the Moto X, DROID Mini, DROID Ultra, and DROID MAXX.

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