Report: The man behind Samsung’s ‘The Next Big Thing’ is now an HTC employee

Screen Shot 2014-04-13 at 2.57.06 PM

According to a report from Bloomberg, HTC has recently hired Paul Golden. If you haven’t heard of Golden, you’re probably familiar with Samsung’s Galaxy brand that he helped create during his role as Chief Marketing Officer at Samsung.

Bloomberg mentions that “two people familiar with the matter” say that Golden was recently hired as a contractor for HTC. Golden is working as an adviser and reporting to HTC’s chairman Cher Wang. At the moment, there aren’t any long-term employment plans for Golden, but his three-month contractor position could definitely become beneficial for HTC.

Read more

Google reportedly holding an internet scavenger hunt that guarantees a shot at I/O tickets

Screen Shot 2014-04-17 at 5.17.20 PM

With Google I/O 2014, Google switched to a lottery-based system for selling tickets. This means that anyone can register for a spot in the draw, but only a select number of people will get the opportunity to shell out $900 for a ticket. This, of course, means that no one is guaranteed entry into the event. It wouldn’t be Google if they didn’t throw some fun into the process. Only this time, the fun guarantees an entry into I/O (via Android Police).

Google has placed a handful of goog.gl links throughout its Developer sites, including within images, texts, and even the source code of pages. Unfortunately, each link is only valid for one spot, and Google doesn’t remove them when they’ve been claimed. So more than likely, any link you find has already been claimed.

Read more

‘Easy Unlock’ feature could soon come to Chrome OS, automatically unlocks your Chromebook if your phone is nearby

nexusae0_EasyUnlock1_thumb

Android Police has spotted a new feature in the Chrome OS dev channel that could one day allow users to unlock devices running Chrome OS by simply having their phone near the computer. The feature, which is still in a very early beta, is dubbed “Easy Unlock.” With this feature, your Chromebook could sense when your phone is nearby and Easy Unlock would automatically unlock the Chromebook, preventing the need to enter your password.

Read more

Moto G now available from Republic Wireless for $149 sans contract

Moto-G-Republic-Wireless

The 8GB variant of the Moto G is now available to buy from Republic Wireless for $149 without a contract. The North Carolina-based MVNO’s “hybrid calling” service is a mashup of VOIP calls via WiFi and roaming powered by Sprint’s CDMA network. If 8GB of storage isn’t enough to support your arsenal of apps, the carrier is also pushing the 16GB Moto G for an additional $30.

Read more

Facebook rolling out new location-sharing feature for Android called Nearby Friends

Facebook Nearby Friends

Facebook announced today it will be rolling out a new social feature to its mobile app called Nearby Friends. The feature allows Facebook users to occasionally receive notifications when common friends are in similar locations similar to features offered by Foursquare and Google Latitude/Google+.

If you turn on Nearby Friends, you’ll occasionally be notified when friends are nearby, so you can get in touch with them and meet up. For example, when you’re headed to the movies, Nearby Friends will let you know if friends are nearby so you can see the movie together or meet up afterward.

Read more

Try before you buy: Google launches home try-on program for Glass

glass email

Google is allowing potential Explorers to try Glass before they shell out the $1,500 to actually buy the device, according to a Reddit user by the name of clide. He posted various images of a home try-on kit, as well as the above email he received from the Glass customer support representatives.

Spencer Kleyweg of GoogleGlassFans called the above number and received the following information about the program: Read more

Video: Amsterdam firefighters testing Google Glass for future use

A visitor is testing the new Google Glasses at the international fair for digital economy 'NEXT Berlin 2013' in Berlin, Germany, 24 April 2013.  NEXT Berlin 2013 is an international trade for which serves as a platform of digital innovations from the worl

What’s cooler than using Google Glass to plan your next vacation? How about saving lives? Firefighters in Amsterdam are in the process of reviewing Google’s famous wearable tech for use on the job. A crew recently put together a concept video showing examples of Glass being used to check safety equipment, identify a vehicle involved in an auto accident and the process of guiding a fireman through using the jaws of life.

Read more

MLB At Bat iOS and Android apps add Chromecast support for Premium subscribers

Chromecast-MLB

Google announced today on its Chrome blog that Major League Baseball is adding support for its $35 Chromecast streaming stick through the MLB At Bat app for Android and iOS. That means that users with the app and an MLB.TV Premium subscription will be able to stream live and on-demand video content from the app (or from a browser tab in Chrome through MLB’s site) to a Chromecast connected TV. You’ll also be able to use the phone or tablet you’re streaming from as a second-screen experience to “check scores, stats and news” while watching the game on the bigger screen:

MLB.TV is the latest live streaming service to come to Chromecast, so now MLB.TV Premium subscribers can invite their friends over to watch live, out-of-market games. While casting a game to the big screen, use your phone or tablet to check scores, stats and news from around the league. You can even choose between home or away broadcasts to steer clear of the opposing team’s announcers when your guys are on the road.

The updated apps are rolling out today for the MLB At Bat app for Android and iOS on Google Play and the App Store, but the Chromecast feature will require an MLB.TV Premium subscription to get started. Those cost $129.99/year or $24.99/month in comparison to the regular $19.99/season or $2.99 month At Bat subscription and offers “every 2014 Regular Season out-of-market game LIVE or on-demand in HD” across platforms. 

Read more

Full comparison: Samsung Gear 2 Neo vs Samsung Gear Fit (video)

newshotOut of the three smartwatches recently released by Samsung, the Gear 2 Neo and Gear Fit seem to be questioned the most. Both of these device are priced at $199 and offer similar features, but which one should you buy? Take a look at our full comparison video between these two wearables to find out.

If you’re looking into the Gear 2, you may be surprised to find that the extra $100 will only get you a camera and a slightly different (metal) build quality on the face of the watch. When compared to the Gear 2 Neo, everything else is identical. With that being said, the best options you should consider are the Gear Fit and Gear 2 Neo.

Read more

AT&T rolling out KitKat to LG G Flex starting tomorrow

img_0687

AT&T has just announced that it will update its variant of the LG G Flex to Android 4.4.2 tomorrow, April 17th. The update includes all the features we’ve come to expect in a KitKat update.

After updating, you should see a new full-screen “immersive” mode, as well as restyled notification and navigation areas. Battery performance should also drastically improve with the update, as should general OS performance, or so says AT&T. Other new features include cloud printing, Tap & Pay for NFC payments, the ability to choose a default SMS app, colored emoji support, and improved music controls from the lock screen.

  • New full-screen mode
  • Restyled status and navigation bars
  • Battery performance improvements
  • Enhanced processing speed

The update comes in at 686MB and will begin to rollout tomorrow. You can check for the update by heading into Settings>General>About phone>Software update>Update now.

Read more

YouTube for Android updated with UI tweaks, ability to Cast live streams to Chromecast

YouTube-for-Android

Google’s Update Wednesday continues today with an update to YouTube for Android. The update bumps the app to version 5.6.31 from 5.5.27 and includes a couple of significant changes. The biggest new feature is the ability to cast live videos from the YouTube app to your Chromecast. The process works just as it does on the desktop and the quality is fantastic. Of course, this would have been very useful during the live streams from the Coachella music festival last weekend, but there’s still the second weekend with which to use it. This will also be incredibly useful for watching live streams from Google I/O on the big screen.

The Watch Later interface has also been updated to fit in with the rest of the app’s interface, as opposed to the image-heavy interface in the previous version. You can now see at least four videos without scrolling, while you were previously limited to two on the same screen.

The update is rolling out now, albeit very slowly. If you’d like to bypass Google’s staged rollout, head over to Android Police where they have the APK available for download.  If not, keep an eye on the Play Store for it to hit your device.

Read more