The Now On Tap portion of Google Search, still limited to Marshmallow and the Android N developer preview, is getting some new bells and whistles. A few readers tipped us off about the ability to select text in any app, activate the Now On Tap gesture, and get results only about the selected text. It's a great way to narrow the text recognition portion of the tool (which bowed earlier this year) down to only what you want. As we were preparing to report on the new feature, Google went ahead and announced it in a blog post, along with some other neat additions. Read More
You know how you still don't have Google Fiber in your area, even after offering to relinquish your immortal soul to Google? Well, there's about to be yet another reason to be sad about that. Google is preparing to add Cast support to all existing Google Fiber TV boxes. However, there are some weird restrictions. Read More
Are you there WordPress? It's me, Michael. Look, I've been trudging through your serviceable interface on seven different websites, day in and day out, for half a decade now. And while I think that it's really cool that you're adding the ability to update my Gravatar icon from the mobile app, we need to have a serious discussion about your image tools. Specifically, about the mind-numbing, head-bashing, eye-gouging awfulness of your image tools. No? We're going to talk about passwords instead? Ugh. Fine. Read More
Notifications are the bread and butter of our Android experience. Something happens, we get a notification. It could be as urgent as a new email from our boss telling us that we missed a comma in a post (stuff like that has been known to happen when your boss is Artem) or as ordinary as a new Twitter mention or a shipping status change on an order or a new episode available of your favorite series. The difference between how you act on these notifications is huge. You can instantly tap to check a notification or, if you're on Android N, directly reply to it, you can dismiss it without a second look because it's not something you care about all that much, or you can leave it hanging in your notification shade as a reminder to check later. Read More
Koush has really kicked Vysor development into high gear after MPEG-LA came calling to demand its pound of flesh, and that's good for anyone who needs to manage a mess of test devices. Vysor now has a Share All feature, which makes it a snap to set up a device farm for testing. Yes, this is part of the paid version of the app, but it's cheaper than enterprise plans at a cloud testing service. Read More
We last reported on the Turing Phone four months ago when the company announced it had dropped Android for Sailfish OS on its ultra-secure smartphone. At the time, TRI (Turing Robotics Industries) claimed the phone would ship in April. Well, April and May have come and gone, but what hasn't come yet is an actual phone shipped to customers.
Turing hasn't posted on its only active social media presence, Facebook, Read More
in twenty days now (correction: a recent comment reply now says the phone will come by "the end of June," which I will believe when someone actually gets a phone), after promising new photos and videos of the phones there "in the next two weeks" on May 11th.
Last month, we shared with you the news that WhatsApp was working on group invite links, as evidenced by many translation strings that were sent to active users who participate in localizing the app for different languages. The feature seemed to allow users (probably moderators) to create a link to join a group and then share it via other apps, print it as a QR code, or write it to an NFC tag. That would thus open up WhatsApp groups to a more public audience, not requiring the moderator to have the invitee's phone number to add them to the group. Read More
Last year, Google announced a new version of its account management hub with a vastly better interface and a few nifty extras. Now that it's been live for a year, Google is celebrating with some new features. First and foremost, there's a streamlined UI for finding your devices, but that's not all that's awaiting you in the My Account hub. Read More
Microsoft is about to hit it big with one of China's top smartphone manufacturers: Xiaomi. It has announced today a multi-faceted deal with the company including sales of patents, cross-licensing arrangements, and software pre-installation, expanding its OEM partnerships and its services' worldwide reach while also providing Xiaomi with the support it needed to enter more markets.
Microsoft will be selling 1500 patents to Xiaomi — it's not clear whether these came from the Nokia acquisition, its many other acquisitions, or ones that it originally filed for. Regardless, according to Wang Xiang, senior vice president at Xiaomi, this should beef up Xiaomi's arsenal of patents and should, theoretically, make it easier for the company to enter Western markets with lesser friction from other patent holders. Read More
USB-C seems to get more widely used with every passing day - ASUS's new ZenFones all have USB-C charging ports - and that is no more apparent than when SanDisk, a major manufacturer of storage devices (until Western Digital acquired the company last month) announces new USB-C flash drives, with a normal USB-A port on the other end for convenient movement of files.
The new flash drives, catchily named "SanDisk Ultra Dual Drive USB Type-C flash drives," are faster (thanks to USB 3.1), reversible, and have multiple purposes, according to the vice president of SanDisk product marketing at Western Digital, Dinesh Bahal. While more and more smartphones are using the connector to charge the battery, very few laptops have USB-C ports at the moment, making a full-size USB a necessity, at least for the time being. Read More