RadioShack to offer Sprint HTC One for $199.99+$50 Google Play gift card, T-Mobile offering free car kit on $99 down

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PhanDroid has received a promotional flyer from RadioShack that shows the price of the upcoming HTC One for $199.99. The interesting part about the flyer is that RadioShack offers a $50 Google Play gift card with the purchase of an HTC One on a 2-year contract. The flyer doesn’t give any word on a release date, but the HTC One is expected to launch sometime in April.

T-Mobile on the other hand offers a deal of its own: Order the HTC One online and receive a free car kit. The kit allows you put your phone on your car’s windshield or dashboard to use as a GPS. T-Mobile offers the HTC One for $99 down plus an extra $20 a month.

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Bing vs. Google: Competition gets turned up on April Fool’s Day (Video)

While Google has played several light-hearted April Fool’s jokes today, Microsoft’s search engine Bing took things to the next level by pretending to be Google.

To see the somewhat harsh joke, go to Bing’s website and then search for “Google.” A Google-like search page will appear with the header “Bing.” The fake search page features floating squares that criticize Google, but it most notably changed Google’s “I’m Feeling Lucky” button to “I’m Feeling Confused” with link to a blog post that fully explains the joke. 

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According to Bing.com’s blog:

So today we’re running a special test, where if you visit bing.com and enter a certain telltale query, you’ll get something a little more bland. We decided to go back to basics, to the dawn of the Internet, to reimagine Bing with more of a 1997, dial-up sensibility in mind. We may see some uptick in our numbers based on this test, but the main goal here is just to learn more about how our world would look if we hadn’t evolved.

So, Microsoft has basically slammed Google’s look and deemed it dated. Yeah. Way to keep things light, Redmond. Don’t worry, though: Google has lashed back.

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Google April Fool’s Day Roundup: ‘Nose’ scent search,YouTube closing, Gmail Blue, Treasure Hunt Maps, Google+ Photos +Emotion, SCHMICK, more

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Google has begun its yearly unveiling of April Fool’s Day jokes with some clever new ideas that probably come up in strategy meetings throughout the year.

Google Nose. Searching a query on Google and clicking the ‘Nose Beta’ button can only find this ‘service’. The service isn’t real of course, but you can read about its features on Nose’s homepage. Funniest bit?

Don’t ask, don’t smell: For when you’re wary of your query – SafeSearch included.

More Google jokes are on the way… Read more

Best Buy to give Samsung Apple-style store-in-store facilities

Geek.com reports that Best Buy plans to introduce Samsung ‘store-in-store’ facilities: an area of the store devoted exclusively to Samsung products and with specially trained staff on hand to demonstrate features.

Apple is so far the only company to be featured in this way:

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An unspecified number of Best Buy stores are said to introduce the Samsung areas to coincide with the launch of the Galaxy S IV.

Ouya Android-based gaming system gets reviewed, begins shipping to backers, June 4 retail launch

We’ve discussed the Ouya before. It was initially an incredibly well-funded ($8.5 million from 65,000 backers) Kickstarter Game console project based on Android that costs $99. The hardware is similar to a Nexus 7 with a NVIDIA Tegra 3 processor, 1GB of RAM, and 8GB of internal storage (expandable via USB), but that outputs to a 1080p display.

Along with games (which are all free to try), Ouya allows streaming apps such as Twitch.tv, Crunchyroll, iheartradio, TuneIn, XBMC, Plex and Flixster, so your $99 is getting some solid features right off the bat.

Reviews are in today, and it appears that it is still a little rusty but has serious potential.

Hit up reviews at VergeWiredCNETAllThingsD, and others.

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Facebook smartphone with HTC launching soon, ad campaign in the works

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Follow years of rumors and speculation, Facebook is finally readying an entry into the mobile phone market. The social network is again hooking up with HTC which will design the hardware. The two companies have been working on a major marketing campaign in Southern California in recent weeks.

According to people familiar with the development of the marketing campaign for the Facebook/HTC phone, the advertisements are designed to focus on the potential user of the device, not on the hardware or software. As a nod to this phone being a much expanded version of the Facebook application found on iOS and standard Android devices, one of the tag-lines for the device is “more than just an app”.

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Google: Sorry, we can’t run a coherent Google Glass contest and need some invites back

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Google began sending invitations on Tuesday to the 8,000 winners of its #ifihadglass contest but admitted roughly a day later that it would revoke invites for applicants who didn’t follow the rules.

The Internet became abuzz yesterday with criticism over who did or didn’t win a pair of space-age spectacles, and Google eventually also realized it messed up when doling out the invites.

In a Google+ post yesterday, Project Glass announced, “It’s become clear that a few applications that don’t comply with our terms have slipped through the cracks, and we’re going to have to disqualify applications like these.”

To become one of the winners in the Glass Explorer program, individuals —absolutely no businesses, etc.— could apply by posting what they would do if they had Glass. The posts had to start with the #IfIHadGlass hashtag on Google+ or Twitter and could not exceed 50 words.

A long list of other requirements also warned applicants to comply in order to win. Google demanded entries, for instance, could not feature language considered “derogatory, offensive, threatening, defamatory, disparaging, libelous or contain any content that is inappropriate, indecent, sexual, profane, indecent, tortuous, slanderous, discriminatory in any way.”

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Google opens ‘Google Shopping Express’ same-day delivery trial to Bay Area residents

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Google just launched a new experiment called Google Shopping Express, a local, same-day delivery service, to a small number of people in the Bay Area.

The official Google Commerce blog has the story:

As a tester, you will be able to shop online, in a single place, from retailers such as Target, Walgreens, Staples, American Eagle and Toys“R”Us/Babies“R”Us — along with locally distinct shops such as San Francisco’s Blue Bottle Coffee, and the Bay Area’s Palo Alto Toy & Sport and Raley’s Nob Hill Foods, and get your items delivered that same day. So hopefully, no more trips across town for simple errands.

As previously reported, and according to Google’s announcing blog post, Tom Fallows leads Google Shopping Express as its Product Management Director.

Those who live in the San Francisco Bay Area that would like to test the new experiment can sign up online today. Google also said it is still working on a long-term pricing plan, but early testers get “six months of free, unlimited same-day delivery.”

“The pilot will expand as we work out the kinks, so please stay tuned,” Google added.

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Google’s Tim Bray on three years at Google and the downside ‘if Google becomes evil’

Tim Bray turns 3 at Google this week. His post on his time is a thoughtful one.

On Google turning evil for real:

Being Evil · There’s no there there. Near as I can tell three years in, Google really wants you to be online all the time (signed in if possible) and put everything in the cloud and use our search engine and and enjoy those experiences and not get hacked, and that’s about it. The money we make falls out of those things.

The interesting question isn’t “Is Google evil?” (answer: not particularly) but “What’s the downside if Google suddenly becomes evil?” Because the chance is nonzero that when our founders die or get bored, MBAs with desiccated souls will be in command, and not really understand why it matters that people have decided, by and large, to trust us.

Fortunately, there’s a firewall: the Data Liberation Front, which strongly limits the evil that an evil Google could do. It’s simultaneously a useful utility and the canary in the coalmine. People should pay attention to it.

Bray’s one of those people I trust to fall outside of corporate-speak and tell it like it is. If I were Google, I’d open an office in Vancouver. Yesterday Read more

Google Maps adds live transit data for 7 NYC subway lines, Salt Lake City’s UTA, and Washington DC’s Metrorail

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Google Maps updated on Wednesday with live information for public transit systems in New York City, Salt Lake City, and Washington D.C.

The Google Lat Long blog announced the news, detailing how seven New York City MTA subway lines and Salt Lake City UTA buses and trains will now boast live departure times. The Metrorail in Washington, D.C. is also offering real-time service alerts for unplanned delays, scheduled track work, etc., via Metro’s Control Center on Google Maps.

“With these updates – part of the millions of live transit schedule updates we process every day – you get instant access to the latest information right on Google Maps, making trip planning a cinch,” Google Maps explained in its blog post.

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