There's a race to the bottom in the home entertainment world, created by the lower pricing for set-top boxes, the near ubiquity of built-in "smart" features for new televisions, and not least, Google's own low-priced efforts with the Chromecast. Compared to the rock-bottom pricing of gadgets like the Chromecast, the Amazon Fire TV Stick, and the market-dominating Roku boxes, Android TV is in a pickle. Stand-alone ATV units start at around $100, which is more expensive than the Roku you might buy (or the apps that come free with your TV), and less expensive than the home game console you might already have. Read More
Google unveiled the Mi Box with Android TV way back in May at Google I/O. Then for months, nothing. We were starting to wonder if the device would ever come out when it began appearing on Walmart shelves last month. Now, the Mi Box is official. It's going on sale today on Mi.com and at Walmart for $69. Read More
The Xiaomi Mi5 was only released a couple of months ago, but the Chinese company is already refreshing it with some improved specifications. In addition, Xiaomi has announced a larger version of the Mi5s, the aptly-named Mi5s Plus. (Does this naming scheme remind you of a certain fruit company's?) Both handsets sport excellent internals and great price tags. Read More
According to a helpful commenter who provided this photo, a Walmart (location unknown) is currently selling Xiaomi's not-actually-out-yet Mi Box. The price? $69. Not bad at all - great, even. Xiaomi has not indicated when it plans to release the device specifically, but if this is any indication, you can probably guess "pretty soon."
So, it may not be a bad idea to call up your local Walmart and see if they made the same mistake - this could be more widespread than we know. And at $69, that's an easy impulse buy, am I right? Read More
The mobile payments solution market is quickly becoming crowded and complicated. Depending on the country you live in, the device you carry, the smartphone OS it runs, the bank you get your cards from, and maybe even your operator, chances are you have to use a very specific payment solution. And vendors, banks, developers, are left to figure out a way to make it work for the largest number of customers.
Chinese users with a Xiaomi phone will have one more option now: Mi Pay. Launching today with China UnionPay, a large payment network similar to Visa and Mastercard, Mi Pay supports credit cards from 20 banks and debit cards from 12, including Bank of China, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, China Construction Bank, Bank of Communications, and China Merchants Bank, as well as public transportation cards from six cities (that's another known payment method in China). The Mi Wallet app can tie up to 8 cards to one Xiaomi device and its users will also benefit from promos and rewards. Read More
Straight after the global release of MIUI 8, Xiaomi is back with its newest device: the Redmi Note 4. Featuring a 5.5-inch 1080p display with 2.5D curved glass, a 4100mAh battery, and a full metal unibody design with chamfered edges, it's pretty clear the Chinese consumer electronics company is hoping that this one will be a big seller.
Other specifications include a 10-core MediaTek Helio X20 processor with clock speeds up to 2.1GHz, an 'ultra-fast' fingerprint scanner, and a 13MP f2.0 camera. 16GB will cost ￥899 ($135), while the 64GB model will cost a wallet-clenching ￥1199 ($180). It also has expandable storage through a hybrid SIM/storage tray, supporting up to 128GB microSD cards. Read More
The developer community is always eager to break barriers and make it easier for you to do almost whatever you want with your device, provided you have a lil' know-how and the patience to read a lot of documentation and follow steps to the letter... or maybe the juvenile carelessness to try and hope it'll work from the first go.
And the first step to doing things your way on your phone is by installing a custom recovery, with TWRP being the most famous now — well, it is indeed superbly maintained and its developers are always on top of new devices. Exhibit A: TWRP is now available for the very new Galaxy Note7. Read More
MIUI splits opinions among Android users - some say it's great, a welcome refinement of the platform, and some say it's a bit too close for comfort aesthetically to Apple's iOS. Whichever way you see it, you should know that MIUI 8 is now out, with the Global stable ROM available for download over on the MIUI forums for supported devices, which are listed below. The 8th version of the Chinese OS was announced back in May with the Mi Max, which David said was gigantic in his hands-on first impressions.
MIUI 8 seems like an evolution of the Android-based operating system, with new features such as 'scrolling screenshots' and an all-new gallery app. Read More
Some folks prefer to run a custom ROM on their phone than stick with the stock software. I'm one of them. But you need a good custom recovery in order to get the job done. That's why it's good news whenever we see more devices gain support from the TeamWin Recovery Project. Read More
Midrange devices are really the perfect target for something like TWRP. They're capable devices, but they usually suffer from intolerably bloated interfaces and/or get updates way too late or not at all. A custom recovery is the starting point from which any enterprising user can start flashing mods and custom ROMs onto their device to get over any of the previously mentioned hurdles.
And so it's nice to see TWRP come to 3 Android phones that count somewhere in the midrange category. The first is the MediaTek version of the Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 (the Snapdragon version got TWRP a couple of months ago). Read More