13
Mar
reader

"We're living in a new kind of computing environment," says Urs Hölzle, SVP Technical Infrastructure and Google Fellow in a new post to Google's official blog. The search giant has resolved to make a second sweep at spring cleaning that began two years ago. After this round of cleaning is complete, the total number of features and services Google will have closed will number 70.

In the post, Google announces the closure or deprecation of eight features and services, but buried four items deep is the one that will probably affect the most users: Google Reader.

13
Mar
mobilefuns4cases-2 (1)

With the Galaxy S IV launching tomorrow, it seems like Samsung is unable to stunt the flow of the internet leak machine (unlike last year): more Galaxy S IV case designs have shown up on the web today, and these ones seem to match up with some of the more convincing leaks we've seen thus far.

mobilefuns4cases-2 (1)

The new cases bear a striking resemblance in shape and camera / speaker / port layout to the leaked Chinese photos of what is allegedly a Galaxy S IV.

13
Mar
so many androids

Imagine, if you will, that every man, woman, and child in Europe owned an Android device. That still wouldn't account for every device that's been made, sold, and activated, according to the latest blog post from Google CEO Larry Page. In the same message that revealed Andy Rubin would be leaving his position as the head of Android development, Page mentioned almost in passing that Android had surpassed 750 million activated devices, including smartphones, tablets, and various other gadgets.

13
Mar
500x_shutterstock_59545093

Oh, LG. Sometimes I really do wonder if you come up with the good ideas first, or if it really is like everyone else sort of thinks it is. Korea's #2 smartphone producer just sent out a press release announcing LG Smart Video, a new feature in the Optimus G Pro. So, if you've heard about the Smart Pause feature that was recently discovered in some screenshots from a Galaxy S III Android 4.2 ROM, it's that.

13
Mar
Pop-up_ads
Last Updated: March 14th, 2013

According to Android developer Jared Rummler and a number of other sources, Google has begun purging known ad-blocking software from the Play Store today.

Popular app AdAway was among those removed, and received notice that its app was in violation of section 4.4 of the Play Store Developer Distribution Agreement.

13
Mar
nexttrial

Many moons ago – way back in December of 2012 – the GO Launcher team released a new thingy called Next Launcher. As its name suggests, it's a launcher. The next one, even. It was to take the place of Go Launcher, which was essentially defunct on Android 4.0+.

But Next came with a price. A $16 price, to be exact. And honestly, not many people want to shell out nearly $20 for any app – much less a launcher they can't try first.

13
Mar
celltower

According to Verizon CTO Nicola Palmer, the company's gargantuan hoard of AWS spectrum will be put to use beginning this summer as part of the carriers' ever-growing LTE network.

Spectrum isn't the world's most exciting topic, but if you're concerned about making an informed choice when you choose your carrier, it's definitely the kind of news you should be looking out for. Verizon currently operates its LTE network exclusively on Band 13 (in the 700MHz range), a band it controls nationwide.

13
Mar
bwr

I've been a big fan of Battery Widget Reborn since we first covered it back in July of 2012. In fact, it's been installed on every device I've owned (or tested) since then. Why? Because it looks good, brings a lot of info to the table, and is constantly updated with new features.

One of my other favorite widgets is the more-recently announced DashClock Widget. There's a lot to love about it, too – like the fact that it supports extensions, making it infinitely customizable.

13
Mar
Kindle Fire HD - 8.9, Front

Whether to combat flagging sales or reflect lower component prices, Amazon dropped the price of its Wi-Fi 8.9" Kindle Fire HD today by roughly 10% - down to $270 for the 16GB model. The price of the 32GB model dropped by $30 as well, to $300. The LTE model received a much more substantial 20% cut, and now costs $400 - $100 less than the price it debuted for.

kf

The Kindle Fire HD 8.9 isn't exactly old news - it began shipping only 5 months ago in the US, and $300 for the entry-level model was scarcely believable even at that time.

13
Mar
nexusae0_gavel_thumb1

A French image processing company by the name of DxO Labs has filed a DMCA takedown request targeting 12 GitHub repositories containing device-specific code for ROMs, most of them maintained by CyanogenMod team members. The notice is vague, only citing:

[3] I have a good faith belief that the file downloads identified below (by URL) are unlawful under these copyright laws because among other things, the files circumvent effective access controls and/or copyright protection measures;

[4] Reason:

Content Type: "Custom Firmware" files

Violation(s): Trafficking a device that circumvents effective access controls and/or trafficking a device that circumvents effective copyright protection measures.

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