Verge Stories September 2, 2014

xperia-z3-compact

We’ve previously seen AutoCAD models, but Ausdroid has obtained what it says are two press shots of the Sony Xperia Z3 due to be launched at IFA in Berlin on Thursday. It has also listed specs which tally with those we posted this weekend: a 4.7-inch display 720×1280 display, a 2.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 and 3GB of RAM.

The photos show four colors: black, white, a kind of mint green and a fourth color that looks more like orange in one shot and red in another (below) …  expand full story

Verge Stories August 6, 2014

front

This is what the Moto 360 wireless charging dock looks like, according to Italian site Gadget.net – and it certainly looks persuasively real. Assuming you can choose to show the time as well as the charge state, the dock effectively turns the smartwatch into a bedside clock while it’s charging overnight.

The blue circle around the outside of the watch face shows the charge level. Looking at the rear of the dock, we can’t see any detail, but it’s likely that it’s some kind of USB connector …  expand full story

Verge Stories July 15, 2014

Hand holding

Google’s vision (sorry) of smart contact lenses that monitor glucose levels in diabetics are one step closer to reality as it signed a commercial licensing deal with Alcon, the eyecare division of the pharmaceutical giant Novartis.

The lens uses sensors to measure the glucose content of tears and transmit that data to a smartphone app that automatically alerts users if their levels are too high or too low. Google reported back in January that it has completed several clinical trials, and that it would be partnering with other companies to manufacture the devices …  expand full story

Verge Stories July 2, 2014

office

If you have an Android tablet and would like to try out a pre-release version of Microsoft’s Office for Android tablet app, The Verge reports that the company is looking for beta-testers.

Sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans tell The Verge that the company is currently preparing a private beta test for the Office Android tablet version, and is accepting participants through a special pre-release program …

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Verge Stories November 14, 2013

Europeans get to use in-flight gadgets too, as EASA mirrors FAA ruling (Update: 3G & 4G too)

Photo: huffpost.com

Following the FAA ruling permitting the use of portable electronic devices during all phases of flight, the European Aviation Safety Authority has announced that it too will be issuing the same guidance by the end of the month.

This will allow passengers on European airlines to use tablets, smartphones and ebook readers from gate to gate, provided that they are placed in Airplane mode at the gate.

American airlines wasted no time in implementing the FAA guidance, so here’s hoping for similar speed for those of us on the other side of the pond.

Update: The EC has now also approved both 3G and 4G network use on board aircraft. This would allow airlines to install mini base stations in their aircraft, with signals relayed via their own on-board radio equipment. I’m desperately hoping airlines won’t allow voice calls …

Via The Verge

Verge Stories September 14, 2013

HTC Rezound Launch Event

The Verge has learned that HTC has laid off about a fifth of its America division. It seems affected employees were informed yesterday, with the cuts affecting multiple departments. The Verge says the company has confirmed that layoffs have taken place, but would not offer more detail.

The Verge has also managed to get a hold of a letter to employees from Jason Mackenzie, the president of HTC America. He is quoted as calling this the “the most difficult day” of his career. He said that this measures are part of a broader plan to “simplify our organisation” and “sharpen our teams focus”. The full statement is included below.

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Verge Stories September 13, 2013

google

Google is currently split-testing a new Google homepage layout. The redesign is not drastically different to tradition, but Google seems to be testing a different look for its persistent top-bar. As shown, the black strip as well as most of the shortcuts to other Google properties have been removed. In this version, the only shortcuts in the top navigation are links to Google+, Gmail and Google Images.

Notably, this design uses the flatter logo previously seen in the new Chrome for Android beta. At the time, The Verge said a source refuted claims that this is a new logo, saying that the flatter look was only meant for places where the traditional logo would not display well, such as when printed onto banners. However, this homepage redesign shows that Google is at least considering to use this new logo as their main branding in the future.

Verge Stories September 11, 2013

The Verge has a great behind-the-scenes look at Motorola’s Moto X factory in Texas that is currently pumping out around 100,000 units of the new flagship device per week. We reported this morning that Motorola is currently shipping a disappointing 100k units a week, so it’s not that surprising to learn that around 200,000 square feet of the factory is not being used.

To accomplish this, Motorola partnered with Flextronics to refab a factory in Texas formerly used by Nokia. In a mere six months, the factory was completely updated and transformed to Motorola’s specifications, which including the hiring of 2,500 workers to make it run. Motorola did not actually make a final call to do manufacturing in the US until late 2012, but the factory was operational by August 6th of this year. The factory currently puts out about 100,000 devices per week, but Motorola says that it’s possible to scale it to tens of millions of units. Given that more than half of the over 400,000 square foot factory floor sits unused right now, that’s not too hard to believe.

It also spoke with Motorola CEO Dennis Woodside about why bringing assembly to the US was crucial for the Moto X’s MotoMaker customizations features.  expand full story

Verge Stories October 10, 2012

Carphone Warehouse’s inventory system lists ‘LG Nexus 4’, possible Oct. 29 unveiling (Photo)

The Verge just posted a tipster-sent picture of LG’s widely speculated Nexus smartphone entered in the inventory system for mobile device retailer Carphone Warehouse.

The Android-equipped handset, listed as the “LG Nexus 4,” apparently comes in both black and white color options. In a separate report, The Verge also claimed, upon citing renowned French newspaper Le Figaro, the LG Nexus 4 will unveil Oct. 29 and land in France by December.

Rumors on the device previously pegged a mid-November launch for the United States, while leaked photos and specs have painted a pretty picture as to what the Optimus G-derived smartphone might feature and look like.

Get the full report at The Verge (1, 2).

Report: Office 2013 for Android to release ‘sometime after’ March 2013 (Update)

A Microsoft executive just revealed native Android and iOS versions of Office 2013 would launch next year.

Microsoft Product Manager Peter Bobek spoke at a media event in the Czech Republic this morning and subsequently confirmed with local website IHNED that a consumer version of the native apps will release around March 2013.

The Verge later read a press release from Microsoft’s Czech Republic office, although it did not provide a copy for publishing, and verified the news. The release allegedly further noted a business variation would go public in December 2013, as well.

Microsoft has widely been rumored to launch an iPad app for its Office suite for quite some time, especially after The Daily published a supposed image of the app running on an iPad earlier this year. Office 2013 for Android will presumably allow users to read and edit Word, Excel, and PowerPoint documents on both tablets and smartphones.

Get the full report at The Verge.

UPDATE 1: IHNED contacted 9to5Google to provide a correction of its original report: “The timeline for Office for iOS and Android is not [a] March release, but release sometime after March.”

UPDATE 2: According to Microsoft Corporate Vice President of Corporate Communications Frank X. Shaw:

[tweet https://twitter.com/fxshaw/status/256089501049450496]

Verge Stories August 17, 2012

OnLive closing? Company says ‘of course not’

Update: While OnLive provided the same statement (below) to Kotaku as they did to Joystiq, a new report from Kotaku, citing a source inside OnLive, claimed the company is about to file for bankruptcy and layoff most of its employees:

The source says that everyone at the company knew things were tight. This morning, an all-hands meeting was called at 10 a.m. this morning where CEO Steve Perlman said that OnLive would be filing for ABC bankruptcy in the state of California—a status that affords them a level of protection from creditors. Perlman also said that the company as it stands now would cease to exist and that no one would be employed by OnLive. A subset of employees would be brought on to the company created from the remains of OnLive.

[tweet https://twitter.com/onlive/status/236537627526979584]

OnLive’s Director of Corporate Communications Brian Jaquet has shot down rumors that the game streaming service is closing its doors after several media outlets reported the story earlier today. A report from The Verge, citing video game developer Brian Fargo and emails from former OnLive staff members, claimed the game-streaming service would shut its doors and lay off staff immediately. Emails obtained by The Verge’s sister site, Polygon, claimed a new company would be formed. However, current OnLive employees would be let go for the time being:

“I wanted to send a note that by the end of the day today, OnLive as an entity will no longer exist,” reads an email forwarded to Polygon. “Unfortunately, my job and everyone else’s was included. A new company will be formed and the management of the company will be in contact with you about the current initiatives in place, including the titles that will remain on the service.”

Speaking with Joystiq, Jaquet confirmed OnLive is not shutting down:

“We don’t respond to rumors, but of course not… The exciting news is that the first VIZIO Co-Stars (Google TV stream players) with the OnLive app built-in have just arrived in customer homes,” he continued, “and our second of three ‘Indie Giveaway Weekends’ is going on now. OnLive users can get a free copy of the award-winning games Space Pirates and Zombies and SpaceChem.” So it sounds like OnLive is still open for business.

When asked about possible layoffs, Jaquet confirmed: “The OnLive service is not shutting down.”

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Verge Stories November 16, 2011

Following a lengthy interview in October where he gave us insight into the future of Android and Google’s view on iOS and Windows, Android’s head of user experience Matias Duarte sat down with The Verge to discuss his work on Android and more specifically, Ice Cream Sandwich. During the interview Duarte elaborated on his competitor’s design choices, where he says iOS looks cartoonish and explains if it were “put on a website or magazine, you’d laugh at it, it would look childish”. Host Joshua Topolsky also calls him out for saying Windows Phone looks like “bathroom signage in an airport”, to which he didn’t comment.

Matias gave a few demos using a Galaxy Nexus, including one of live video chat effects like blurs and warps that alter your face in real-time. He also explained his view on photography features calling traditional features of point and shoot cameras such as white balance “crap”, saying “if it’s not immediately obvious, it’s something the machine should be taking care of for you”.

Duarte also defended Google’s choice to create the new Roboto font for ICS, which he also recently explained in a blog post, as well as addressed the controversy of ICS’s Face Unlock feature (which was recently tricked using a photo). expand full story

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