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Friday, April 22, 2016

The Chinese government decided to ban two iTunes products which may be detrimental to Apple’s continued success in the country, its second-largest market after America. China wants to encourage local products and business that rival Apple’s iTunes Movies and iBooks Store, which is why Apple users in the region won’t be able to purchase or rent movies and buy books from Apple anymore.

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The two stores were launched in China just six months ago, after obtaining regulatory approval from the government. But now, the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television, demanded these services would be shut down immediately, The New York Times reports.

Apple has confirmed the decision. “We hope to make books and movies available again to our customers in China as soon as possible,” a spokesperson said.

As the Times explains, the move isn’t necessarily surprising for China, which seeks not only to promote local businesses over foreign, especially U.S.-based ones but also to control the kind of content its citizens can access. So far, this policy did not affect Apple’s growth in the country or its operations. But it looks like Apple won’t be an exception any longer, as regulators may intensify scrutiny into Apple’s business.

“They are interested in protecting the content that the Chinese people see, policing its national security and favoring indigenous giants such as Huawei, Alibaba, and Tencent,” New-York based advisory firm Rhodium Group’s founding partner Daniel H. Rosen told the Times. “[China] is strongly disinclined to accept the dominance of foreign players on the Internet, not least those from the United States.”

According to local media, President Xi Jinping of China conducted a meeting on Tuesday on the country’s Internet policies. Leaders from Alibaba and Huawei were present.

“China must improve management of cyberspace and work to ensure high-quality content with positive voices creating a healthy, positive culture that is a force for good,” he said, according to news service Xinhua.

Chinese customers spent $59 billion on Apple products last year, the Times reports, with the iPhone being a hit product in the country. This explains why China is so important for the company. Reduced access to Apple’s online services, including movies and books, might pose a problem, especially if China decides to ban other iTunes products in the region.

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Crossy Road on Android has got a fun little update that a lot of you should appreciate. The game now supports local multiplayer.

Now, up to four people can join in the same game over a local Wi-Fi network and play against each other. The one who goes the farthest wins. The gameplay is similar to that on the Apple TV version, where you can push other players into traffic or water, and even block them from moving, which makes this a bit more fun than just moving forward.

The multiplayer is only available on Android for now. Unfortunately, it does not work over Bluetooth, so you have to be connected to a common Wi-Fi network. Other than that, this is a fun new addition and a great way to inject some life into a familiar game.


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First details regarding of the upcoming 3rd generation Moto E have surfaced thanks to import documents on Zauba. Codenamed "Affinity", the phone is listed to have a 5" display and a price of just $78.

While it's clear that this price isn't the device's retail one, it's an indication that the "Affinity" is a low-budget device. The current Moto E (2nd gen) sports a 4.5" display, so the upcoming model will presumably grow in size.

Presumably, the Moto E (3rd gen) will be larger in order to accommodate a fingerprint scanner. As a Lenovo exec said earlier in January, all 2016 Moto devices will have fingerprint scanners. Hopefully, the latest Moto E won't be an exception.

Recent information suggests that Motorola prepares to announce the Moto G5 and G4 Plus on June 9. We wouldn't be surprised if the Moto E (3rd gen) too gets a place under the spotlights then.


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Xiaomi has announced that it will launch its own mobile payments service. The Chinese smartphone manufacturer - which is the biggest player in its home market - will partner with the country's national bank card association China UnionPay for the service.

According to the company's CEO Lei Jun, Xiaomi Pay - or whatever it will be called - will be a Near Field Communication (NFC)-based mobile payments solution, just like Apple Pay.

Currently, the Chinese mobile payments market is dominated by local players such as Alibaba and Tencent. Another well known Chinese smartphone vendor Huawei, as well as international companies like Apple and Samsung have also already launched their payments services in the world's biggest smartphone market.


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Thursday, April 21, 2016

Microsoft has released its Q3 fiscal 2016 earnings report, revealing that it sold only 2.3 million Lumia phones in the quarter.

The figure is down 73% compared to the same quarter last year, when the Redmond, Washington-based company sold a total of 8.6 million Lumias. Compared to last quarter, when the company sold 4.5 million Lumia units, the number is down around 50%.

Microsoft also revealed that the sales of non-Lumia units stood at 15.7 million units, down from the 24.7 million figure it reported the same time last year. Talking of phone revenue, it was down $662 million, which is a drop of 47% year-on-year.


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Huawei's sub-brand Honor has announced that its 5X smartphone will start getting the Android Marshmallow update soon, although no specific date was revealed. The announcement came in the form of a tweet from the brand's US Twitter handle.

Running Android 5.1 Lollipop, the Honor 5X launched in the United States back in January this year, carrying a $200 price tag. It has been available in gold, silver, and grey color options from HiHonor, Amazon and Newegg.

The device landed in Europe just a few days after its US launch. There, it was priced at £189.99, €229.99, or CHF 229.90, depending on the region/country.


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In an effort to further improve its service, Facebook has yet again updated it News Feed ranking algorithm. The social networking company says that the algorithm will now also take into account the amount of time users spend reading/watching stuff they click from their News Feeds.

"We are adding another factor to News Feed ranking so that we will now predict how long you spend looking at an article in the Facebook mobile browser or an Instant Article after you have clicked through from News Feed," Facebook said in a press release.

"We will not be counting loading time towards this — we will be taking into account time spent reading and watching once the content has fully loaded. We will also be looking at the time spent within a threshold so as not to accidentally treat longer articles preferentially."

The update has started rolling out, with the company saying that the process will take a few weeks to complete.


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Xiaomi has announced that its Redmi Note 3 smartphone will be available for purchase in India without any registrations next week - the open sale will kick start on April 27 at 2PM.

The announcement came in the form of tweet from the Chinese company's India unit. The tweet contains a link to, suggesting that the open sale will only be hosted on Xiaomi's India website.

As for the device, it was launched in India last month, and has only been made available through flash sales until now. It's powered by Snapdragon 650 SoC, sports a 5.5-inch 1080p display, and comes in 2GB/16GB and 3GB/32GB memory configurations, with the former costing INR 9,999 ($150) and the latter setting you back INR 11,999 ($180).


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Samsung has started pushing out a minor update to its latest flagship smartphones - the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge - in India. Weighing in at 1.06MB, the update includes some bug-fixes as well as stability and performance-related improvements.

This update to the latest Galaxy phones follows the one that the South Korean company started pushing out earlier last week, bringing touch and stability-related improvements as well as shape correction for skewed photos and latest Android security patch.

Given that this new bug-fixing update has just started rolling out, it may take sometime before it hits your handset. Meanwhile, if you're feeling impatient, you can head to the Settings menu on your device to check for it manually.


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Sprint has started rolling out Marshmallow update to Samsung Galaxy Note Edge and Galaxy S5 Sport units on its network. The update brings Android version 6.0 to both devices.

The Note Edge update also includes latest Android security patches as well as some other bug fixes. The updates are being rolled out in phases, with the Note Edge process completing on May 2 and the S5 Sport process wrapping up on May 11.

In case you haven't received the update notification yet, you can also manually check for the update by heading to the Settings menu on your handset.

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If you enjoyed Star Wars: The Force Awakens when it came out in theaters last December, chances are good that you picked up either the Blu-ray or the Digital HD version of the film when it came out earlier this month.

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Unfortunately, despite all of the deleted scenes and bonus features on the home release, there’s no commentary to speak of, which is why Will Sasso of Mad TV fame decided to provide a track of his own on Instagram this week.

Oh, and he did the track as Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Sasso, who might be best known at the moment for his Ten Minute Podcast, has always been an outstanding impersonator. Former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is one of his best known characters, making regular appearances on his Vine and Instagram account, as well as a guest on his podcast.

Why exactly we needed a Schwarzenegger commentary track for The Force Awakens I’ll never know, but now that we have it, I never want it to go away. You can watch the short video below, but there’s some NSFW language, so you might want to put on a pair of headphones before you start watching:

Hopefully we’ll get more commentary after Rogue One launches later this year.

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While there’s no denying that Tesla’s vehicles are forward-thinking and beloved by multitudes of owners, there’s also no denying that early production models of Tesla vehicles tend to have more than their fair share of kinks and usability issues. We saw it previously with the Model S and now we’re starting to see an increasing number of reports detailing problems with early production models of the Model X.

Following up on a Consumer Reports piece which lambasted the Model X for having one too many usability issues, Fortune highlights an early Model X owner whose experience with Tesla’s crossover SUV has been nothing short of an exercise in frustration.

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Meet Byron Deeter, a venture capitalist with an apparent affinity for EVs. As one of the first owners to get behind the wheel of Tesla’s Model X, Deeter was more than willing to put up with a few minor frustrations here and there. And with good reason, most early adopters are reasonable enough to realize that sometimes the price one pays for getting in on the ground floor are a few kinks that still haven’t been ironed out.

Unfortunately, Deeter soon discovered that the kinks that came with his Model X were a bit more serious than he could have ever anticipated.

Deeter’s first problem was that the driver’s door wouldn’t open from the outside, prompting him to first open the passenger door and then reach across. Then the driver’s side door wouldn’t close.

“I could manually close it, but the car couldn’t sense that the door was shut, so the electric control wouldn’t latch,” says Deeter. “Yesterday, I literally drove to a meeting holding the door closed.”

Deeter later power-cycled the system, which cured the problem until he got back in the Model X this morning. He resigned himself to another day of driving with one hand on the driver’s side door, but as he backed out of his driveway, the emergency brake kept automatically engaging. He’d drive a few feet, be forced to stop, put the car in park and then reverse … before the entire thing began again. And, to make things even worse, the driver’s side window would no longer close all the way.

As Deeter explains it, the problems with his Model X quickly transitioned from minor frustrations to legitimate safety problems.

“It’s definitely a reminder that quality control with human mobility and safety is critical,” Deeter said to TechCrunch. “In this case, Tesla did push out some software and maybe some hardware that wasn’t quite ready for prime time.”

In a statement on the matter provided to TechCrunch, Tesla said they remain committed to fixing problems as quickly as they can.

“We are committed to making the world’s most reliable cars,” Tesla said. “While we have seen some issues with early Model X builds, the issues are not widespread, and we are working closely with each owner to respond quickly and proactively to address any problems. We will continue to do so until each customer is fully satisfied. This commitment is one of the reasons why 98% of our customers say they will buy another Tesla as their next car.”

Indeed, that’s perhaps the most interesting tidbit to take away from this saga: no matter what problems appear to plague Tesla vehicles, Tesla owners, by and large, never seem to regret their purchase.

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Lots of us have ridden on planes before, but how many of us could really explain how airplanes lift themselves off the ground and stay in the air? Well don’t worry, because a neat animation explains everything you need to know about what makes a plane take off and maintain altitude for hours at a time before landing.

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If you’re familiar with the intricacies of flying, you’ve probably heard the terms drag, thrust, lift, weight, pitch, yaw, and many others. But do you understand how they work?

A YouTube clip posted by the Rocket Science channel that’s just over six minutes long explains these concepts, and they show how they affect every stage of a flight, from take-off to turning and stabilizing the aircraft once it’s in the air to landing. It’s all pretty simply laid out, and it doesn’t sound like rocket science – pun intended.

Check out the full clip below.

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Early on, it was believed that the FBI paid upwards of $15,000 for a software hack that enabled them to access data housed on the iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino terrorists. However, recent remarks from FBI Director James Comey reveal that the FBI likely paid a whole lot more.

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While speaking at a security conference in London on Thursday, Comey was flat-out asked how much the FBI paid for the specialized hack it acquired from a mysterious and still unnamed company. While not divulging a specific figure, Comey provided enough information to suggest that the FBI paid well over $1 million for the hack in question.

News of Comey’s remarks were first reported by NBC News earlier today.

Asked Thursday at a security conference in London how much the FBI paid for the tool that cracked Syed Farook’s phone and ended a California court battle with Apple, Comey said, “A lot, more than I will make in the remainder of this job, which is seven years and four months, for sure.”

The FBI director is paid about $180,000 a year. So multiplying that by 7.3 years yields a figure of about $1.3 million. FBI officials were not immediately available to confirm the figure.

Notably, we’ve yet to learn how the FBI ultimately accessed the iPhone used by San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook. Nonetheless, the FBI, in subsequent weeks, has been more than willing to provide their assistance to other law enforcement agencies seeking to access locked iPhones.

Now as for what the FBI unearthed once they gained unfettered access to Farook’s phone, reports indicate that nothing relevant was found. As the story goes, the FBI had an 18-minute gap in their timeline of Farook and his wife’s activities and they needed access to the iPhone to ensure that no third-party individuals were contacted.

All the same, Comey said that the high price the FBI paid for the iPhone hack “was in my view worth it.”

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The unprecedented demand for Tesla’s Model 3 is the automotive world’s biggest story this year. In short, Tesla has now received 400,000 reservations for a car that most people won’t be able to drive for at least another two years. This has spooked other car companies that no longer see Tesla as a joke and that are now scrambling to get their own all-electric vehicles onto the market.

All of this has led many to compare the Model 3 to Apple’s first iPhone — that is, it’s something that fundamentally changes people’s expectations for what they want from a product. Despite this, there are still a lot of questions about whether Tesla can really deliver.

RELATED: How Elon Musk became an industry icon and a tech hero: an illustrative guide

Even though Tesla’s Model S has proven to be a hit with both its owners and with professional critics, Tesla owners do have gripes about the cars’ fit and finish, as well as some of Tesla’s design choices. More troubling, however, is that early impressions of Tesla’s Model X haven’t been nearly as positive and Tesla recently had to recall its shipped Model X SUVs because of a design flaw in the form of a faulty locking hinge on the last row of seats.

Given that Tesla is having these kinds of issues on cars that it’s producing on a small scale, it’s fair to ask whether Tesla will be able to ensure quality when it starts trying to fulfill the 400,000 reservations that have been made for the Model 3.

Bloomberg has posted a chart that shows just how often Tesla has delayed its shipments and it’s not a pretty picture:


Again: Tesla has experienced big problems with delays despite the fact that it hasn’t been making a lot of cars. How is it going to handle such a rapid expansion?

The question here isn’t whether Tesla has disrupted the car market and has forced manufacturers to embrace all-electric vehicles, because it clearly has. The question is if Tesla can fulfill its immense promise and stay ahead of what is going to be truly formidable competition.

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If you use an Android device and you aren’t happy with the phone’s default notification system, you can either wait for Android N to further improve it or install Nevolution right now. Currently in beta, Nevolution wants to improve notifications beyond what’s currently available from your average Android app by taking advantage of everything Google has to offer.

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The app lets you change the order notifications appear on the screen, and even bundle the notifications together so they take up less space. Furthermore, Nevolution lets you turn off heads-up alerts if you want.

The app also wants to make everything look good in the processes, and there are various notification modes to make the most of your available screen real estate. You can choose to view more text from each notification and as Gizmodo noted, there’s an awesome Elastic List mode that adapts to the available display space.

The modes can be activated and deactivated at will, depending of your preferences. Users can even customize notifications for chat apps like WhatsApp and WeChat — for example, WhatsApp might get one notification per conversion while WeChat notifications let you peek at every new message as new notifications arrive.

Nevolution definitely improves your notifications experience on Android, but let’s not forget that Google is also making several big changes to the notifications system in Android N that cover both functionality and the user interface. As a result, Nevolution might be just a stopgap solution until Android N rolls out. Ars Technica has a great rundown of the new notifications features coming to Android N.

As for Nevolution, a video showing the app in action follows below and the beta is available right now from the Play Store for free. Mind you, some bugs are to be expected and the app only works with Android 4.3 or later.

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T-Mobile loves to brand itself the “Un-carrier” but a new lawsuit alleges that it’s doing something very carrier-esque by charging customers sneaky early termination fees despite the fact that they never signed onto any service agreements. Per Top Class Actions, the suit is alleging that while “T-Mobile attracts customers by touting ‘no contract’ cell phone service plans without any hidden fees,” the company actually “has a practice of unlawfully seeking the entire amount under the device contract as immediately due” whenever a customer leaves T-Mobile early.

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This has actually always been the case with T-Mobile ever since it announced that it would ditch two-year service agreements. If you buy a device through T-Mobile, you have the choice to either pay for it outright or to pay for it in monthly installments over the span of a couple of years. So while T-Mobile isn’t going to charge you any fees if you leave their service if you’ve already paid off the cost of the device, you will have to pay off the cost of the device in its entirety if you leave before you’ve paid it off.

“When T-Mobile attempts to recover the entire accelerated amount, it knows it has no right to seek this amount,” the class action suit alleges. “Thus, T-Mobile has a practice of illegally accelerating contracts and attempting to collect illegal charges from consumers that are not owed.”

Whether this suit is successful may come down to how well T-Mobile has covered its bases in its device purchase agreements. If T-Mobile explicitly tells device buyers that they’ll have to pay off the entirety of the device immediately if they leave T-Mobile before paying off their installments, it will be tough to see how this is all that deceptive.

Then again, this lawsuit is alleging T-Mobile has specifically violated the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act and the Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act, so a case could also hinge on whether T-Mobile’s marketing has deceived consumers into thinking its ditched all contracts when in reality it’s just ditched all service contracts.

BGR reached out to T-Mobile and the “Un-carrier” declined to comment.

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In celebration of the Hubble Space Telescope’s 26th birthday, NASA astronomers have highlighted an image of a massive star blowing a bubble into space. The Bubble Nebula, as it is known, sits 7,100 light-years from Earth.

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“As Hubble makes its 26th revolution around our home star, the sun, we celebrate the event with a spectacular image of a dynamic and exciting interaction of a young star with its environment. The view of the Bubble Nebula, crafted from WFC-3 images, reminds us that Hubble gives us a front row seat to the awe inspiring universe we live in,” said John Grunsfeld, Hubble astronaut.

NASA says that the star forming the Bubble Nebula is 45 larger than our own sun. Gas on the star gets hot enough that it can fly into space at over 4 million miles per hour, sweeping up cold gas in front of it and forming a bubble.

Although the nebula was originally discovered by William Herschel in 1787, the Hubble Telescope was able to photograph it “with unprecedented clarity” in February of this year. The blue you see in the image above (and the video below) corresponds to oxygen, the green to hydrogen and red to nitrogen.

You can see a video representation of the aforementioned stellar bubble in the video below:

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It’s time to stop watching everyone else have all the fun with quadcopter drones and get one of your own. And what’s the only thing better than one drone? That’s right, an entire army of drones just waiting to do your bidding. Different quadcopter models have different features, so real drone fans will always have multiple models. And thanks to all the killer Amazon deals on quadcopters, you can build your drone army without breaking the bank.

Below you’ll find five drone models that are trending right now on Amazon, and they start at just $29.95 with free Prime shipping. The models below are all great but if you want to check out even more drone options, here’s Amazon’s page of its best-selling quadcopter drones.

Estes Proto X Nano R/C Quadcopter, Red: $29.95 with free Prime shipping

Estes Proto X Nano R/C Quadcopter, Black: $29.95 with free Prime shipping

Dromida Ominus UAV Quadcopter RTF, Green: $59.98 with free shipping (select price from “other sellers”)

Dromida Ominus UAV Quadcopter RTF, Red/White: $53.99 with free Prime shipping

Traxxas 6608 LaTrax Alias Quad-Rotor Ready-To-Fly Helicopter: $99.95 with free Prime shipping

Follow @BGRDeals on Twitter to keep up with the latest and greatest deals we find around the web

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Yesterday Huawei started teasing the launch of its next Honor-branded device. The Honor V8 will become official at an event on May 10, and it will emulate the dual-camera setup of the recently unveiled P9. This will consist of two 12 MP units. The Honor V8 has also been rumored to come with the Kirin 950 chipset, 4GB of RAM, and a fingerprint sensor. Today rumors out of China paint a clearer picture.

The handset will apparently have a 5.5-inch 1080p touchscreen, an 8 MP selfie camera, a 3,000 mAh battery, and a USB Type-C port. Its price in China should be around CNY 2,000, which at the current exchange rates means $308 or €273.

Finally, from the same Chinese sources comes news that an Honor 8i will be unveiled at the same event. This will be the successor to the Honor 7i from last year, and it will allegedly keep the unique flip camera design of its predecessor, while still being aimed at women.


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The upcoming fourth generation of Motorola's Moto G smartphone has been leaking a lot lately, which could mean it's getting ever closer to being officially introduced.

It turns out that may actually be the case. At the launch of the ZUK Z2 Pro today, Lenovo CEO Yang Yuanqing said Motorola will be outing a new and exciting device on June 9.

Unfortunately he didn't go into more detail, but given the increasing number of leaks about the Moto G4, we assume it can only be this model that will be announced. That said, do keep in mind that we might see two G-branded models this year - a vanilla, smaller G4, as well as a bigger Moto G4 Plus with a fingerprint scanner embedded in a physical Home button located underneath the screen.

Spec-wise nothing has transpired yet, but if the new Moto G does get official in early June then we expect some prototypes to be spotted in certain benchmark databases pretty soon.


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Amazon is upgrading its most basic Kindle Fire tablet today, if ever so slightly. The 7-inch device now gets three additional color versions you can pick from when buying one. Aside from the existing black model, it's now also being offered in blue, magenta, and tangerine hues.

What's more, a new iteration with 16GB of built-in storage has been revealed. The 8GB model will stay on sale for $49.99, while the new SKU with double the storage is priced at $69.99.

Everything else about the tablet has remained the same. This is still one of the cheapest slates out there, but do keep in mind that it runs Fire OS, Amazon's forked version of Android.

The Kindle Fire has a 7-inch 1,024x600 touchscreen, a 1.3 GHz quad-core processor, a 2 MP rear camera, a VGA front-facing camera, 1GB of RAM, and a microSD card slot.

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So far, the LG V10 has received its update to Android 6.0 Marshmallow internationally, but also for units sold by both Verizon and T-Mobile. And now it's finally time for those V10 handsets sold by AT&T to taste the latest version of Android too.

According to a report, the rollout of the Android 6.0 Marshmallow update for AT&T's V10 has already commenced. As this is a staged over-the-air outing, it may be a few days before every AT&T V10 out there receives that coveted update notification. If you're impatient, you can of course manually check for the update by going to the About phone area in Settings.

The new software comes as a 1GB download, so make sure you're on Wi-Fi before grabbing it (and have enough battery left). Marshmallow brings with it new features such as Now On Tap, Doze Mode for improved battery life, App Standby, as well as a revamped permissions system. All of these things should be found inside this release for the V10, along with bug fixes.


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Gamers haven't been forgotten at Acer's event today. Specially for them, the Taiwanese company unveiled two new computers.

First off, the Predator 17X laptop, one that can be used with both the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive VR headsets. It comes with a 17.3-inch screen that can go up to 4K resolution. If you go nuts with the configuration options, you can also choose an Intel Core i7-6820HK processor, 64GB of DDR4 RAM, and three SSDs in RAID 0. You get customizable RGB lighting for the keyboard, and the device has the full Nvidia GTX 980 graphics card, and not the 980M as you'd expect to see in a laptop.

It has a triple fan cooling system, and it obviously supports overclocking. The Predator 17X weighs a whopping 4.5kg and it has 3-hour battery life. It will launch in China first in May, and will reach Europe and North America in June. Pricing will start at $2,799.

Next up, the Predator G1 desktop is billed as "portable", though you probably won't be taking it on road trips with you. It can be configured with up to a 6th gen Intel Core i7 CPU, 64GB of RAM, Nvidia Titan X graphics, and a 512GB SSD + a 4TB HDD.

The G1 is ready for your VR experience of choice, naturally so given the specs. It will be priced from $2,299. It will be out in Europe in June, and in North America and China in July.

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New Windows-powered 2-in-1s and laptops aren't everything that Acer has announced at its event today. Also present was the new Acer Chromebook 14 for Work, a device which the Taiwanese company claims is the fastest Chromebook on the market.

That's seriously doubtful given the specs of Google's newest Chromebook Pixel, but Acer seems to believe in what it says. The odd thing is that the company hasn't actually revealed the detailed spec list for the new Chromebook, so we can't really assess these claims.

All Acer's willing to disclose about the Chromebook 14 for Work is that it features 12-hour battery life, an Intel Core i processor, and that it has a spill-resistant keyboard and overall rugged design which complies with military specs and lets you drop the laptop from 45cm without worry. It can also withstand up to 60kg of weight being placed on top of it.

The Chromebook 14 for Work is the first laptop to use Corning's new Vibrant Gorilla Glass, which can be customized with various images. This is also Acer's first model to be compliant with Google's Chrome for Work program. The laptop is probably only going to be sold through enterprise channels. Pricing and availability information hasn't been announced yet.


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At its grand event today, Acer has announced the Aspire S 13, a new laptop that wants to compete with the 13-inch Apple MacBook Air, but also Dell's XPS 13. And it wants to do all that while being significantly cheaper than its competitors.

The Aspire S 13 will have a 13.3-inch Full HD IPS display, which can optionally be touch-enabled. You can configure it with up to 8GB of RAM as well as up to a 512GB SSD, and an optional battery will make it allegedly last a whopping 13 hours on a charge (the default power pack only nets you 9 hours of usage). Powering the thing are Intel's 6th generation Core processors (you can choose between i3, i5, and i7), and it will have a USB Type-C port, two 'normal' USB 3.0 ports, HDMI, and an SD card slot.

It will be offered in Obsidian Black or Pearl White, when it goes on sale in May starting at $699. The Aspire S 13 weighs just 1.4kg and it's 14.4mm thin.

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Acer is holding a pretty big event today, and one of the things it's announced is the Switch Alpha 12, a "detachable PC" as the Taiwanese company calls it. It's a 2-in-1 device that can be used either as a tablet or as a laptop, and it runs Windows 10 as you'd expect.

The Switch Alpha 12 has a 12-inch 2,160x1,440 touchscreen, and it's powered by 6th generation Intel Core processors (a choice of i3, i5, or i7). You can configure it with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, as well as Intel's RealSense 3D camera.

The device is fanless despite using proper i-series chips from Intel, and that's because it features a newly designed liquid cooling system to keep its innards at the required temperature.

It has a built-in kickstand (as can be seen in the promotional images), and the keyboard will be bundled with it, so no need to pay extra for that. Optionally you'll be able to pick up the Acer Active Pen stylus with 256 levels of pressure supported. The whole Switch Alpha 12 (including keyboard) weighs only 1.25kg.

The Acer Switch Alpha 12 will start at $599, and should become available in June.

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Acer held a press event today in New York and announced a couple of laptops and a smartphone - the Acer Liquid Zest Plus.

Acer shared some of the key specs of the Liquid Zest Plus on stage - a 5.5" HD display, a 13MP camera with something they call tri-focus, and a massive 5,000 mAh battery capable of quick charging. Tri-focus means the snapper relies on all types of AF used today - laser, contrast and phase detection.

We managed to find some more specs of the device - it runs on MediaTek's MT6735 chip with a quad-core 1.3GHz Cortex-A53, Mali-T720 GPU and 2GB of RAM. There is 16GB storage, a wide-angle 5MP selfie snapper, and Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS.

The Liquid Zest Plus will be available in the USA soon for $250, which is a nice price for such a device.

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Android N is yet to be officially named later this year, but it was already detailed last month. It offers multi-window (split-screen) multitasking, improved Doze mode, better notification handling among others.

The Android N Developer Preview was seeded to Nexus 6, Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, Nexus 9, Nexus Player, and Pixel C in early March. The Preview even saw its first firmware update in mid-March.

Surprisingly, Sony made the Android N Preview available to the Xperia Z3 model earlier today. If you own the D6603 or D6653 flavors of the Xperia Z3, then you can easily install and run Android N. Here is how:

  • Connect your compatible Z3 device to a computer with a USB cable.

  • Xperia Companion will open automatically.

  • Make sure you have Xperia Companion version 1.1.24 or later. If not, download the latest version from here.

  • Hold down the ALT key on your computer and click on Software repair on the home screen, then follow the guide.

  • You’ll be asked to disconnect and turn off your device, then to reconnect whilst holding down the volume down key to start the software flashing.

  • You can return to factory settings at any time by connecting back to Xperia Companion and following the Software repair.

The Android N Developer Preview lacks the Xperia launcher, so you should have that in mind before installing. Plus - it's recommended to install it only if you are a developer and know what you are doing. Bugs and issues may and will occur, so it's not recommended to use an Xperia Z3 running on Android N as your primary phone.

That being said, feel free to share your experience in our comments section.

Source | Via

Source :

JerryRigEverything has come up with somewhat a standardized durability test for smartphones and he does it quite often. He first tests the scratch endurance of the shell, then the flame resistance of the screen, and finally - the bend test.

Xiaomi Mi 5 uses two Gorilla Glass 4 pieces on its front and rear side and their scratch resistance is on par with the rest if the flagship crop. Its camera is protected by a sapphire piece, which is resistant to scratches, too.

The aluminum is rather easy to scratch - that's for sure. But as it turns out the Mi 5 lacks a secondary metal chassis to hold the insides and uses a cheap aluminum for the one and only frame. The consequences? Watch the video below.

As it turns out the Xiaomi Mi 5 is one of the easiest-to-bent smartphones out there due to the single and lower-grade aluminum frame that's supposed to hold everything in place.

We are not great fans of bend tests, because every phone is bound to break when plenty of force is applied, but this test sheds some light on why the Mi 5 is cheaper and lighter than other competitors.


Source :

Saturday, April 16, 2016

You can start Windows PowerShell from the Start menu, from the Taskbar, from the Search or Run box, from a Command Prompt window, or even from another Windows PowerShell window.
And you can start multiple instances of Windows PowerShell (or Windows PowerShell ISE) on a single computer.

How to Start Windows PowerShell

On Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, and later versions of Windows, to start Windows PowerShell from the Start menu, click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories, click the Windows PowerShell folder, and then click the Windows PowerShell item.
On Windows XP and Windows Server 2003, to start Windows PowerShell from the Start menu, click Start, click Programs, click Accessories, click the Windows PowerShell folder, and then click the Windows PowerShell item.

How to Start Windows PowerShell ISE

Windows PowerShell Integrated Scripting Environment (ISE) is a new host application that lets you run commands, and write, test, and debug scripts in a friendly, syntax-colored, environment.
In Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, and later versions of Windows, to start Windows PowerShell ISE, from the Start menu, click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories, click the Windows PowerShell folder, and then click the Windows PowerShell ISE item.
In Windows XP and Windows Server 2003, to start Windows PowerShell from the Start menu, click Start, click Programs, click Accessories, click the Windows PowerShell folder, and then click the Windows PowerShell ISE item.

How to Start Windows PowerShell with All Modules

In Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2, you can use a task to start a Windows PowerShell window that includes all the commands that are available to you from optional modules and snap-ins, including those that would not otherwise be added by default. The window also has the privileges of your Administrator account.
For more information about Windows PowerShell modules and snap-ins, see Using Modules and Snap-Ins, How to Import a Module, and about_Modules.
To start Windows PowerShell with all modules, use either of the following procedures.
  • In the taskbar, right-click the Windows PowerShell icon, and then click Import All Modules.
Click Start, click Administrative Tools and then click Windows PowerShell Modules.

In Windows Server 2008 R2, the Windows PowerShell icon is pinned to the taskbar by default. However, you must start Windows PowerShell one time to make the Import All Modules task appear.
In all supported versions of Windows, you can add all available modules to a Windows PowerShell session. Start Windows PowerShell and, at the Windows PowerShell prompt, type:
get-module -listAvailable | import-module

How to Start Windows PowerShell with Administrator Privileges

In Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2, you can use a task to start a Windows PowerShell window with all the privileges of the your Administrator account. Typically, this is not necessary, but there are a few commands that require these privileges.
In the Windows taskbar, right-click the Windows PowerShell icon, and then click Run Windows PowerShell as admin.
To start Windows PowerShell (or Windows PowerShell ISE) with Administrator privileges in all supported versions of Windows, use the following procedure.
  1. Click Start, click Programs, click Accessories, and click the Windows PowerShell folder.

  2. Right-click the Windows PowerShell item (or the Windows PowerShell ISE item), and then click Run as administrator.

How to Start Windows PowerShell with Other Options

Windows PowerShell has numerous options that let you start a customized Windows PowerShell session, including options that use a particular console file, run with a particular execution policy, exclude your Windows PowerShell profile, run a particular command or script, or use a single-threaded apartment, among many others.
To view these options, in a Command Prompt (Cmd.exe) window, or in an existing Windows PowerShell window, type:
powershell -?
To start Windows PowerShell with a particular option, use the parameter for the option. For example, to start Windows PowerShell with the RemoteSigned execution policy, type:
powershell -executionPolicy RemoteSigned

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