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Motorola Spotlight Player releases 3rd interactive animated story

Posted by wicked November - 21 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off

For Moto X users who have the Motorola Spotlight Player, a video app exclusive to them, waiting for the newest featured animated film has been tedious, but maybe some would say worth it. The third feature has finally arrived on the device and is a beautiful coming-of-age short animated film that hearkens back to the age of hand-drawn animation, but with an interactive element that is possible through Motorola’s technological advances on its flagship device.

Duet is a 3 and a half minute film, directed by Glen Keane, a former Disney animator who has been in the industry for 38 years, working on legendary films like The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast, and Tangled. And his Disney background is quite obvious in this short feature, and we say that as a big compliment. It’s not just an animated film though, as he shares how the engineers from Google’s Advanced Technology and Projects (ATAP) helped shape the technological aspect of the film. Instead of a linear story that tells how love develops between Mia and Tosh, they used a sort of double helix format where the interactions at different points in their lives are told in “arcs that spiral around one another.”

Unlike most films that you can just watch, the Spotlight Stories actually ask the users to journey with the stories by giving them power to interact by twisting and turning the handset while watching the film. Keane shares that this is not an easy thing for a filmmaker, since the natural instinct is to control everything to be able to tell your story. But virtual storytelling is a different thing and this is something that the guys at ATAP have been successful with their first two offerings, Windy Day and Buggy Night.

While of course you need to have a Moto X to be able to watch the Spotlight Stories and other future projects, there are ways to watch Duet without owning one. However, since you’ll only be able to see it on YouTube or other video sights, the whole point of its interactivity and non-linear storytelling will be lost. But on its own, it’s still pretty compelling stuff to watch, especially if you’re a fan of the Disney school of animation. Moto X users will already have gotten the notification that the film is available for viewing (and interacting) while non-Moto X people will have to be satisfied in looking for “bootleg” versions of the film.

SOURCE: Motorola

New SwiftKey update brings speed, Indo-Aryan languages

Posted by wicked November - 21 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off

SwitfKey has definitely been busy. Today it announced an update that may not be major in version number or appearance but is quite the big thing in experience. The new SwiftKey promises to be faster, coming quickly when you need it and quickly getting out of your way when you’re done. It has also expanded its roster of supported languages to 81, adding 12 new languages from Indo-Aryan regions to that ever-growing list.

Virtual keyboards, fancy as they are, shouldn’t be the center of our attention when in use. They should be comfortable to use and quick to come and go as the case may be. That is why SwiftKey has been hard at work at improving the core performance of their app. In this latest update, the developers promise several speed ups across the board. The keyboard appears 15 to 20 percent faster, both from a fresh install and from subsequent uses. It also disappears 20 to 30 percent faster, so you have less waiting time after you’ve finished typing. The keyboard also refreshes itself faster, so switching between fields is 15 to even 50 percent quicker.

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Keyboards are also only as good as the languages they support and while English might be the lingua franca, there are many users that would prefer and even need to use their native tongues. That is why virtual keyboard makers are on a race to support as many languages as they can. For this round, SwiftKey has added 12 more to its team, coming from Indian and Indo-Aryan languages. These include Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Oriya, Punjabi, Tamil, Telugu, Nepali, and Sinhala. But this language support isn’t just your ordinary keyboard language support either. Instead of just switching between keyboard languages, SwiftKey actually allows you to use multiple ones in what they call the “multilingual typing” feature.

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The SwiftKey update is now available on Google Play Store and should be rolling out to users already. Those who haven’t tried it yet, the keyboard is free to download and use, as SwiftKey switched to a freemium business model in June.

SOURCE: SwiftKey

Telegram 2.0 update brings Material Design and more

Posted by wicked November - 20 - 2014 - Thursday Comments Off

A major new update has been published for the Android app Telegram bringing a full redesign and Android 5.0 material design. Every screen of the app was updated to make it consistent with Android 5.0 design standards and animations. Support for the new standards was also added for older Android devices.

Along with the design update comes some new features as well with instant full text search allowing you to find any message sent or received. Developers promise that search is faster than what is offered in Gmail and other apps.

Users also get some new privacy settings including the ability to control the Last Time Seen notifications. It can be turned on for everybody, contacts only, or turned off. There is also a way to share that information only with specific people or to not share it with certain people.

Another new feature is the ability to set your account up for self-destruction. If you stop using Telegram and don’t login for six months, the account will be deleted. All messages, media, contacts, and any other data stored in Telegram will disappear. The self-destructing accounts can be set to destroy themselves in 1 month to 1 year. The updated app is available to download now.

SOURCE: Telegram

Cisco comes up with Project Squared, a productivity collaboration app

Posted by wicked November - 19 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

Cisco announced an ambitious new app today which they call “Project Squared”, a tool used over the cloud for communication, productivity and collaboration. The tool is robust enough to not care what sort of mobile device or platform you’re using – it works smoothly on all of those, giving users the ability to have meetings (video and audio) and share content on a single app.

On the face of it, Project Squared seems to be a sleek new alternative to WebEx, the collaboration software that Cisco bought for USD$3.2B in 2007. If you’ve used WebEx, then you probably would attest to the clunkiness of the software in today’s mobile surroundings. Granted, it did the job before tablets were a thing, but it surely is in need of a replacement.

Project Squared is that replacement, or so Cisco would like you to think. This new product works across platforms – that in itself gives users access to communications and work/task sharing wherever they are. The app uses a “room” metaphor, where you can create multiple rooms with different members depending on the purpose of your meeting.

The cherry on top? It’s this – Cisco is offering the app as a free download for Android, iOS, Windows and Mac starting today. We have to admit, this is a pretty nice move by Cisco, going the way most modern apps do. Give us a shout out if you’ve tried this out.

Download: Google Play Store
SOURCE: Cisco

LastPass update: Auto Fill helper for easier website and app sign-ups

Posted by wicked November - 19 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

As you get to download more apps and sign up for more services on the web, password managers are becoming essential not just to help you remember them but also to keep all your accounts secure. LastPass is one of those offering its services and the latest update to its Android app adds another functionality that will make it more convenient for you to sign up and sign in whether on the app itself or on a website.

Version 3.3.10 of LastPass now brings you the App Fill Helper which will help you fill in the important credentials and log-in details on any app or website. It will appear on the edge of your screen so if you need it, it is very accessible already and if you don’t need it, it’s also easy to disable it. You can drag it to both sides of the screen of your browser or several selected apps. To use it, just tap the box and it will show you the matching log-in details. However, there are some sites that don’t allow you to use auto fill-in programs, but LastPass will instead give you easy copy-paste options.

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The update also adds more apps and websites to its long list of pages so you’ll be able to log in to them easily. It’s also added more browsers, both desktop and mobile where you can use the app, which includes Chrome, Opera, Yandex, Silk Browser and Javelin among others. LastPass has been known to be one of the most manageable and secure password managers, as it has the ability to help you generate strong passwords and at the same time, help you manage them so you don’t have to memorize them (unless you have a photographic memory that you won’t need an app for that).

To be able to use the Auto Fill Helper, you need to be subscribed to LastPass’ Premium service for just $12 a year. But if you want to try it out first before committing, you can use their two-week trial. Otherwise, you can directly upgrade to premium after downloading from the Google Play Store through an in-app purchase.

SOURCE: LastPass

Fleksy beats Guinness World Record again, drops Android price

Posted by wicked November - 19 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

Fleksy keyboard has been a favorite of some Android users because of its speed and accuracy. It recently beat a Guiness World Record for the “fastest time to type a text message on a touchscreen device”. It’s not exactly Fleksy for Android but rather the app installed on an iPhone 6 Plus but still, it’s Fleksy.

Avid Fleksy user and typing champion Marcel Fernandes Filho beat his previous 18.19 seconds by 1.19 seconds on the new iPhone phablet. Using Fleksy, Marcel set a new record for typing speed at 17.00 seconds. He typed the following phrase:

“The razor-toothed piranhas of the genera Serrasalmus and Pygocentrus are the most ferocious freshwater fish in the world. In reality they seldom attack a human.”

Because of this good news, Fleksy has dropped the full Android version by 50 percent. The Fleksy keyboard app is now down to $1.99 and ready for download. Fleksy simply wants to improve people’s typing experience so it’s giving a discount on the paid app. The developer is hoping more people will take advantage of Fleksy.

So what makes Fleksy better than the other keyboards? Its autocorrect is more powerful and accurate, it features a gesture support for typing actions, and it comes with easy access to emoji. Fleksy also comes with different keyboard size options and themes for a more personalized typing experience.

Download Fleksy from the Google Play Store

SOURCE: Fleksy

Samsung launches brand new Milk Video app for Galaxy owners

Posted by wicked November - 19 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

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Samsung has just launched a new, exclusive application for Galaxy owners in the United States. The South Korean company claims that its new service, called Milk Video, will make “it easier than ever to find and share the best and most talked about online videos.”

The firm has teamed up with a selection of the industry’s top online video providers, including Condé Nast, Funny Or Die, Red Bull, Vevo and VICE, in order to supply appropriate content and exclusive videos for Milk Video users.

“Personalized at its core, Milk Video will learn and refine its content recommendations with every use. By understanding what consumers watch, who they choose to follow, who they like or repost as well as which videos are dismissed, Milk Video will deliver the content that is relevant for each user,” writes Samsung in a post on its official blog.

Users will also have the facility to follow friends, companies and other users within the application — they will receive a notification whenever a new, popular video is uploaded to the service by the people they’re following.

Be sure to check out the full gallery of in-app screenshots below.

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Play Store Download Link

Milk Video™ is a video discovery service that makes it easier than ever to find and share the best and most talked about online videos. At launch, entertainment brands and networks will be contributing content and unveiling exclusive material for the service, including Condé Nast, Funny Or Die, Red Bull, Vevo and VICE, among others.

“The promise of Milk is a well-designed mobile experience that makes it easy to discover the content you want. We did this first with Milk Music, and now, we extend this promise with Milk Video,” said John Pleasants, Samsung EVP, Media Solutions Center America. “Samsung is committed to giving our customers the best software and services to enhance their device experience. We’re partnering with some of the best brands in new media to deliver great content across our consumers’ passion points: music, comedy, lifestyle, and entertainment.”

The beautiful, simple design makes browsing effortless — searching is a thing of the past. Personalized at its core, Milk Video will learn and refine its content recommendations with every use. By understanding what consumers watch, who they choose to follow, who they like or repost as well as which videos are dismissed, Milk Video will deliver the content that is relevant for each user. In addition, users can follow friends, brands and other users within the app. Sharing with friends outside of the app via Facebook®, Twitter® or email offers another option for others to see what you’re enjoying on Milk Video whether or not they have Milk Video.

According to a recent ComScore study, it was reported that over 80 million Americans view video from their mobile phone each month. With the brilliant displays and high resolution screens of Samsung’s family of premium Galaxy devices, consumers will have an unrivaled mobile experience for viewing the new premium service.

Download Milk Video now through Google Play®. Milk Video is compatible with Galaxy Note® II, Galaxy Note® 3, Galaxy Note® 4, Galaxy Note® Edge, Galaxy Mega™, Galaxy S® III, Galaxy S® 4, Galaxy S® 4 mini, Galaxy S® III mini and Galaxy S® 5 devices.

 

Come comment on this article: Samsung launches brand new Milk Video app for Galaxy owners

Opera Max now updated for Lollipop, available in more countries

Posted by wicked November - 19 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

It was in December 2013 when Opera came out with Opera Max, an app that promised to lower the data consumption of mobile users who are constantly browsing on their smartphones and tablets. Now, coming to the app’s first anniversary, it has been updated for Android 5.0 and has added a bunch of new countries and territories where the data consumption app can be used.

If you are a resident of these territories, then you can now give Opera Max a try. Included in the new countries’ list are Albania, Australia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cambodia, Hong Kong, Japan, Laos, Liechtenstein, Macedonia [FYROM], Myanmar, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Serbia, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan.

Also, Opera Max has now been updated to work seamlessly with Android Lollipop. There are also a number of fixes in the update, including a resolution to IPv6 traffic in previous versions. The VPN usage permissions have also been tweaked, with users now able to just confirm VPN approval once for Opera and no longer have to reapprove the app every time their device restarts.

The app uses VPN technology to compress the data flowing into your phone, but we are not avid fans of it, so we ask you. Have you used Opera Max? What do you think of the app? Does it work for you the way it advertises that it does? Tell us about it in the comments section.

Download: Google Play Store
SOURCE: Opera

Nokia Z Launcher for Android now on Google Play

Posted by wicked November - 19 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

Hey, did you know Nokia is getting some more Android lovin’? Actually, it’s more like the other way around: Android is getting a lot of Nokia stuff these days. Nokia may not be getting back into the handset business and will focus on other important stuff but an Android tablet by Nokia has recently rolled out. The Nokia N1 was introduced a couple of days ago complete with the Nokia Z Launcher homescreen.

The new Nokia Z Launcher has been in beta mode the past months but it’s only now that the app is available in the Google Play Store. Nokia was excited to announce that the app now also runs on rooted devices as requested by the beta-testers and those active in Nokia’s forum.

The former top phone manufacturer updated the app to make it faster. Nokia tried to make small speed improvements on specific handsets including finger tracking latency. The company also made better prediction by bringing context and improvement to algorithm data. Response and recognition time of the Scribble feature have been improved too.

Nokia Z Launcher Beta 2
Nokia Z Launcher Beta 3
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Nokia Z Launcher App is available for download from the Google Play Store

Z Launcher is available on Android mobile phones running 4.1 OS

SOURCE: Z Launcher

Amazon app update: Lollipop and Android Wear support

Posted by wicked November - 19 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

A few weeks after retail giant finally combined their Appstore and their shopping app under one happy place available on Google Play Store, another update is making it possible to enjoy the whole Amazon experience, not just on your smartphones but on wearable devices as well. Not only have they prepared support for Google’s major update, the Android 5.0 Lollipop, but now Android Wear users can also use their smartwatches to interact with stuff they’d like to purchase on the online retail store.

This means that all those who have a smartwatch running on Android Wear and an Amazon account (or create one if you don’t yet) can now do some shopping through their wearable. To begin using it, you only have to use the activation phrase “start Amazon”. You can make a voice search for what you’re looking for on the app, then afterwards add them to your wish list. In fact, you can do the buying from the comfort of your smartwatch, if you’re comfortable with that sort of thing.

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Since Google has started rolling out the Lollipop update to some devices, apps (well those that haven’t yet) need to offer support for the latest major Google upgrade. The Amazon app update has now made sure it is compatible with all devices running on Lollipop and the software builds. The usual and important big fixes and updates are of course also in the can with the latest version of the Amazon app.

No need to wait for Amazon to roll up the update. If you haven’t been automatically updated yet, you can head over to the Google Play Store to manually force the update.

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