With all of the activity surrounding YouTube Red, including a brand new YouTube Music app, it seems like a good time for a Play Music update. Version 6.1 just landed and aside from a mysterious new "Auto-offline" feature and a bit of cleanup in the Settings screen, it looks like a pretty typical bug fix release. However, the teardown tells a different story. It looks like this version also brings support for the recently announced family plans and Android Wear speaker support. As usual, we've also got a download link at the bottom if you can't wait for the apk to roll out to your account. Read More
The first gen Android Wear devices are getting a little long in the tooth, but in the electronics world, with age comes a dramatic drop in price. The smartwatch I have worn daily for the past 9 months is the Sony Smartwatch 3, and I have to say, I don't really feel any need to replace it.
The watch has great battery life, WiFi, GPS, and while the transflective display isn't the prettiest, it sure is functional for outdoor use. The water resistance and silicone band keep me from worrying about damaging it while working in the hospital and MicroUSB charging makes it the easiest Android Wear device to top off when out of the house. Read More
Virtual reality is posed to be the future of gaming for folks who like wearing goggles that close them off to the world. While you wait as the necessary tech rolls out to consumers—and for your bank account to grow—you can get a taste without much investment. Wizard Academy is an educational action game you can play using Google Cardboard. Read More
As part of Google, Motorola garnished a reputation for speedy updates. These days the company has a new owner, and those OTAs don't seem to come out as reliably as they used to. But Motorola hasn't gone back on its promise to bring Marshmallow to something, and now it's beginning its rollout for the 2015 Moto X Style and the 2014 Moto X, according to Senior Director David Schuster. Read More
If you want a top end phablet with a stylus, you can't find one with better specs than the Galaxy Note 5. You also can't find it cheaper anywhere than you can on eBay right now. The N920C unlocked international version is on sale for $550, over $200 less than the asking price at T-Mobile and AT&T.
This version of the device has very broad GSM band support. The antenna is compatible with all the following frequencies.
- 2G Network: 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
- 3G Network: 850 / 900 / 1900 / 2100
- 4G Network: LTE 2100 (B1), 1900 (B2), 1800 (B3), AWS (B4), 850 (B5), 2600 (B7), 900 (B8), 700 (B12), 700 (B17), 800 (B18), 800 (B19), 800 (B20), 800 (B26)
The seller will ship the device for free anywhere in the US. Read More
Around this time last year Verizon released a self-branded tablet called the Ellipsis 8, a larger variation on the original 7-inch Ellipsis. We had some fun speculating on its corporate origins. But thanks to lots of discounts and package deals, there are actually a ton of these things in the hands of consumers, including some of my Verizon-using family members. So here we are again, with another, bigger Verizon whitebox tablet. This time it's a ten-inch slate called the (wait for it) Ellipsis 10. Read More
I'm not even a particularly big Starcraft fan, but I kind of really really want this light-up Protoss pylon USB charger a lot. It has all the key features of an excellent novelty USB charger: pretty lights and a reference I get. And Protoss pylons are just kind of cool looking. The only image does appear to maybe be a render - or at the least, a generously edited photo - so buyer beware on the actual quality of the product here, because it doesn't have any reviews yet.
Also, at $40, that's one hell of a pricey dual-port charger, and only one of those ports is 2.1A, the other is rated at 1A. Read More
Things are heating up for Android Wear lately. Earlier this week, a new version of the Android Wear companion app began rolling out to make preparations for the next OS update. There's now an update to the Google app in the Beta channel which follows up with some interesting changes of its own: a new Wear-specific app that places the Google Now stream into a distinct card on watches. A teardown also shows some interesting new experiments for continuous queries and text-to-speech. There's even a small tweak for the Google Now Launcher.
The Google Now Card
Views of the new Google Now card and the first page to the right. Read More
Today, the Bluetooth SIG announced a series of improvements on the Bluetooth standard's "technology roadmap" in 2016 would offer enhanced range, speed, and mesh networking capability for the wireless communication protocol.
It's not clear if these changes will be part of a new standard (like Bluetooth 4.2 and beyond) or if there will be improvements applicable to older specs as well. In addition, we don't know if any of these improvements would require changes to the Bluetooth hardware itself, or whether both host and device must support the spec to see any kind of benefit. It's not even clear when we'll be able to expect devices with the improvements. Read More
Google quietly unveiled a new YouTube Music app when it rolled out YouTube Red last month, and we've been waiting ever since to see it become available in the Play Store. Well, today's the day. Google has officially announced its new YouTube app dedicated entirely to music. Read More