Google testing new grid interface for promotions tab within Gmail

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In a blog post on the official Gmail blog, Google has just unveiled a new design for the promotions tab within the web Gmail interface. The promotion tab was originally introduced last year when Google switched to a categorical tabbed design. Currently, the promotions section looks the same as the other categories within Gmail, but with this change, the design will switch from being list-based to a grid. instead of just subject lines, the grid view will pull in images from the email and make it easier to see exactly what the message is promoting. The grid view also makes it easier to scroll through a lot of messages by introducing infinite scrolling.

Promotional mail has a lot of images, from pictures of snazzy new shoes to photos of that rock-climbing gym you’ve been wanting to try. But right now, those images are buried inside your messages—and with only subject lines to go on, it can be a challenge to quickly pick out the deals and offers that interest you most. To help you find what you’re looking for faster, you can now sign up for a new field trial for Gmail that lets you view the Promotions tab in a more visual way.

To sign up for the grid view, head to g.co/gmailfieldtrial and if you’re selected, you’ll have the option to switch between the grid a list views with ease.

New HTC One (M8) for sale online in US & Canada today, 7 countries before end of April

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After unveiling its new flagship second-generation HTC One, the company just announced availability for the device on stage at its event in New York. The device will arrive in the US and Canada in the first couple of weeks of April through all major carrier partners, but starting today at 1PM EST you can pick one up online through HTC as previously revealed. It will also be available through select Verizon stores starting today.

The company announced the phone will be coming to a handful of countries before the end of April including Australia, Taiwan, UK, Germany, France, China, and the US. HTC didn’t mention a timeframe for the 100+ countries and 230+ carriers shown in the image above, but it did say the new HTC One M8 would be “the single largest product rollout in HTC’s history.”

Sense 6 will arrive for the last generation HTC One lineup, including the One mini and Max, this Spring. In addition, HTC Advantage is getting the free screen replacement program (as well as the latest version of Android promised for two years) that was previously rumored.

If you’re planning on picking up the new HTC One today, you can do so here starting at 1PM EST.

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HTC unveils the new HTC One (M8), here are the official specs

We’re live from New York at HTC’s unveiling of the new HTC One (M8) and the company has now officially unveiled the new flagship smartphone. The company has spent the starting of its presentation talking about the HTC One’s high-quality metal construction that it described as “like a premium watch,” as well as the new Gunmetal Gray Hairline Finish pictured above. It also shared a few specs for the device (below) before moving on to its new customized version of Android, Sense 6 (or 6th Sense).

One of the big announcements for Sense 6 is that HTC is opening up its Blinkfeed homescreen to developers with a new SDK releasing today. Foursquare will be the first partner to support the feature and will publish, for example, lunch recommendations into the Blinkfeed homescreen, while Fitbit will display activity milestones in the feed. HTC is hoping other app developers will follow with support.

We have most of the hardware specs below (no huge surprises), but HTC also spent a lot of time talking about small tweaks you might not see in the specs list like much improved sound quality through a combination of redesigned speaker chambers and software tweaks. HTC also mentioned some big improvements for the camera including a new camera switcher (pictured in the gallery below) with new “dual capture”, “selfie”, and “customizable manual” shooting modes. The M8 also features a 300 millisecond focus time that’s 50% faster than the previous generation.

Sales for the new HTC One (M8) will kick off today in the US and Canada. Details on availability for other countries and carriers are available here.

Check out the official specs from HTC and some shots from the event below:

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HTC site says new One (M8) goes on sale at 1PM EDT today, 4 colors, all major carriers

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HTC’s event is about to kick off at 11AM ET, and it looks like the company just revealed that its new flagship second-ten HTC One (M8) smartphone will go on sale starting 1PM EDT today. A page for the device on HTC’s online store not only confirms the device goes on sale at 1PM, but also that Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint will all be partners at launch. Purchases through HTC’s site will get free express shipping and the company is also giving away 65GB Google Drive storage for two years with every purchase. The page also makes mention of the Google Play Edition we told you about earlier and four color variants including “gun metal gray, silver, gold, and black.”

It’s unclear if the new HTC One will be available at 1PM through all carrier partners or just HTC’s site, or if the Google Play Edition will launch alongside the standard model. You can catch HTC’s livestream of the event here at 11AM ET or stay tuned to 9to5Google for all the official details.

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Watch live as HTC unveils the new HTC One (M8) at 11am ET [Livestream]

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In case you’ve missed the countless rumors and leaks on tech blogs in recent weeks, HTC is about to unveil its second generation HTC One that has up until now mostly been referred to as its codename “M8”. If you want to watch the live event taking place in New York in just over an hour from now at 11am ET, it looks like you’ll be able to do so through what appears to be a live stream on HTC’s website here.

It looks like there won’t be many surprises at the event— there’s already a full video walkthrough of the device online— but we’ll at the very least get confirmation of specs, a look at new software features, and hopefully details on pricing and availability. If the rumors are right, HTC might stick with the One branding and simply call the device The New HTC One. In addition to the livestream, we’ll be on hand at the event to bring you updates as they happen on 9to5Google.com.

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Fleksy adds cloud personalization and rewards to its Android keyboard

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Fleksy is out today with version 2.0 of its Android keyboard bringing a new list of features with it.

My Fleksy Cloud enables Android users to sync personalization features between devices including its new language algorithm based on your writing style.

Fleksy 2.0 also introduces a new badge system for reaching achievements. The badge system offers an element of gamification to mastering the Fleksy keyboard, and achievements can unlock new themes and extend the free trial period.

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Sony says it won’t move to Google’s new Android Wear platform for SmartWatch

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When Google introduced its new “Android Wear” developer kit earlier this month, it also announced a list of partners working with the new stripped down version of Android for smart watches and wearables. However, Sony, one of the Android device makers that already has Android smartwatch products on the market, was not on that list. Today we find out that’s because Sony plans to stick with its own version of Android on wearables rather than move to Google’s new “Android Wear” vision for the hardware.

Head of Sony Mobile US Ravi Nookala confirmed the news to Cnet:

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HTC confirms Google Play Edition for new HTC One ahead of this morning’s unveiling

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Ahead of this morning’s official unveiling of the all new HTC One in New York, the company has confirmed that a Google Play Edition of the device will be on the way (via AndroidPolice). No word if it will get a release alongside the regular version of the device, but we’ll know for sure in a few short hours. The confirmation comes from a description for the new HTC Gallery app that notes “Support for HTC One(M8) Google Play Edition is limited to HTC Photo Edit.” 

The new HTC One (Codenamed M8) is the successor to HTC’s successful flagship HTC One smartphone from last year and has experienced a long list of leaks in recent months leading up to today’s unveiling. Yesterday we got a look at the device next to the previous generation in a lengthy comparison video.

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LG shows off its upcoming ‘G Watch’ in new image, 240ppi 1.65inch screen rumored

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LG has posted an image of its upcoming smartwatch on Twitter, perhaps trying to deflect attention away from the Moto 360. The watch will run on the Android Wear platform, but unlike Motorola, LG has opted to use a traditional square screen for the ‘G Watch’.

Other than teasing that the device is ‘coming soon’, LG is still reluctant to release detailed specifications about the device. However, the Wall Street Journal is reporting some more concrete technical specifications according to ‘a person familiar with the matter’. The Journal says that the device will feature a 1.65 inch display with a resolution of around 240 pixels per inch.

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Roku for Android updated w/ new interface, search enhancements, more

Roku this afternoon has released an update for its Android (and iOS) companion remote app. The update includes quite a few tweaks and new features, and bumps the app to version 3.0. First off, the app as new, much cleaner design that Roku says is significantly faster and more easy to use. The update also now lets you control any Roku on your home WiFi network, much like Apple’s Remote app on iOS. You previously had to login into the Roku account associated with each set-top box to control it.

One of the coolest new features is the ability to search within the app for a movie, show, actor, or director. The Roku app will search within all channels and show you where you can watch the content you searched for. The new search feature for now is only supported “on US-based Roku players firmware 5.4 or later” and on all hardware except the Roku 2450x or 2500x.

  • All New Visual Design – The UI features a new, modern look.
  • Search on your mobile device – Enter a movie, show, actor, or director, to explore and see what’s available. Choose from the available services and jump right into the Channel, ready to watch.
  • Control any Roku player on your network – Use the remote control, or play photos, music, or video with Play on Roku.
  • Bug fixes and other enhancements.

The Roku app for Android is available on the Play Store now.

 

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Google takes Glass to next level with fashion partnership, teams up with Oakley/Ray-Ban parent company Luxottica

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Google has just announced that it has signed a deal with with Ray-Ban and Oakley parent company Luxottica to work together on creating a series of frames compatible with Google Glass. Google also notes that the retail channels of Luxottica will make distributing Glass to the mainstream public even easier.

Unfortunately, details about availability and specific designs remain sparse, as Google notes several times that this announcement is simply to inform customers that the two companies are working together, not that they have any product to release. At first, Google says it plans to work with Ray-Ban and Oakley, but will eventually expand into Luxottica’s other brands, which include Vogue-Eyewear, Persol, Oliver Peoples, Alain Mikli, and Arnette. The first designs are expected to feature “avant-garde design,” which implies something more stylish than the bland offerings Google has now.

Google hopes that this partnership will make Glass more appealing to the general public, as people associate the Ray-Ban and Oakley names with style and high-end eyewear. The deal will also offer even more customization options.  “Between frames, shades, and colors, there are over 40 different ways for Explorers to make Glass their own today,” Google said, “but that’s not enough.

Earlier this year, Google announced its own in-house designed frames, dubbed the Titanium Collection. Wetley also announced its own prescription frames, and was first to the market. You can read a FAQ about the partnership from Google below:

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HTC One M8 gets another thorough video walkthrough, compared to its predecessor

The guys over at TechSmartt have gotten their hands on the upcoming HTC One M8 and have posted a thorough hands-on look at the phone. The video also compares the device to the (about to be) old HTC One, clearly demonstrates the camera software, and showcases some benchmarks. HTC clearly has not had an easy time keeping this upcoming phone a secret as this is one of several hands-on videos already on the web. The phone will officially be announced tomorrow (we’ll be live at the event), and here are some of the specifications we’re expecting:

 

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