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Zoe app now to be hosted locally, will remain for HTC devices only

Posted by wicked September - 1 - 2015 - Tuesday Comments Off

When HTC opened up their Zoe video creation app to Android users who were not rocking HTC devices, some Android users were pretty excited because of the collaborative nature of the app. It allowed your friends to add media to your video and to even remix other videos. But they weren’t probably prepared for the number of people who would be using their app, leading to crashes, performance issues, and user dissatisfaction. Now they’re updating the app, but it brings a good news, bad news situation.

The good news is that your Zoe videos will no longer be hosted on the cloud. This means when you’re creating your video and your network connection suddenly becomes wonky, then you won’t lose what you’re editing, like what usually happened before this update. So it means, the videos you make will be created and hosted locally on your device using its GPU and and onboard CPU so it’s much more stable. If you want to share it with others, then you’ll have to do it the old-fashioned way by uploading to your media sharing social networks.

But the bad news is that, since the creation and hosting will be done locally, then non-HTC devices will not be able to use the app anymore so they can focus on developing hardware for what they know best, as stated in their press release. So by September 30, not only will their cloud services shut down entirely, but you’ll only be able to make and share a Zoe through a supported HTC device.

The other good news for HTC users is that the update has also brought a few goodies like the maximum length now for videos is 3 minutes instead of just 30 seconds. You will be able to include as many clips as you want as long as it’s within that time frame. If you have a supported HTC device, you should update your Zoe app now.

SOURCE: Zoe

Users angered by Cheetah Mobile’s purchase of QuickPic

Posted by wicked September - 1 - 2015 - Tuesday Comments Off

Developers know by now that they should beware of the wrath of the annoyed Android users, as they can easily make or break you with their Google Play comments. If they like you, they really really like you, as popular photo gallery app QuickPic understands since they’ve been the darling of apps in their product line. But if they hate a certain developer, and it’s a hate that isn’t unfounded, then they will really hate you, as QuickPic quickly found out when they were sold to one of the most unpopular and widely hated developers out there.

When fans found out that Cheetah Mobile bought QuickPic, negative comments lambasting the move, the new owner and even the app which they previously loved, flooded its Google Play Store page. Take note that nothing has changed yet for the app, as far as we can tell, and yet people are already hating on it. Why, you ask? If you’re not aware yet of who Cheetah Mobile is, then we’d be glad to enlighten you, and this will explain why a lot of Android users are already prejudging the app under new management.

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If you’ve ever downloaded an app that seemed very similar to some popular apps only to find out that it was kind of an imitation app that is “dripping with adware”, then more than likely, this has come from a developer like Cheetah Mobile. A lot of the ones that they churn out are duplicates of features of most Android phones, fooling some users into thinking this might be an improved product, only to find it useless, pointless, and it even slows down your device.

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So you may understand why users are up in digital arms, so to speak. Maybe this time Cheetah is trying to have a sense of respectability by buying a legit app that is loved by many. But given their business practices, it’s highly unlikely they will leave the app alone. Let’s wait and see, but don’t get your hopes up.

VIA: Android Police

Google Maps updated with enchanced navigation UI and new popular times chart

Posted by wicked September - 1 - 2015 - Tuesday Comments Off

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Google has just updated its official Maps application in the Play Store. In terms of added functionality, this upgrade brings improvements for the navigation user interface and a new popular times chart, which displays the most popular operating hours for businesses listed on the service.

The full changelog can be seen below:

  • Enhanced Navigation UI
  • Popular Times chart
  • Easily add a missing business to the map from the sidebar
  • Bug Fixes

To install the update on your smartphone, simply open up the Play Store, toggle the hamburger menu by swiping in from the left-hand side of the screen, select ‘My Apps’ and click on ‘Maps’. Then all that’s left for you to do is hit the update button.

 

Come comment on this article: Google Maps updated with enchanced navigation UI and new popular times chart

HTC Zoe App update hits the Play Store

Posted by wicked September - 1 - 2015 - Tuesday Comments Off

Android Apps_HTC Zoe_update_083115_7A new update for HTC’s Zoe app has rolled out in the Play Store for select HTC One users. This update will include a new smart trim feature and longer clips.

The new smart trim tool allows users to shorten their video clips within the app. HTC has also raised the limit of seconds per Zoe from 30 seconds to a whopping 3 minutes or 180 seconds. For people who use the app on a daily basis and shoot Zoe’s all the time, this will be a welcome enhancement. You can download the update at the link below.

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Play Store Download Link

Come comment on this article: HTC Zoe App update hits the Play Store

Google Play Services updated with support for Android Pay

Posted by wicked August - 31 - 2015 - Monday Comments Off

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Earlier today, Google started pushing out an over-the-air update for its Play Services application via the Play Store. In terms of added functionality, this upgrade bumps the version number up to 8.1 and shows initial signs of support for Android Pay.

A new option can be seen in Play Services called “Tap & Pay”, which is the subject for the screenshot on the right. This will allow users to Android Payselect between Android Pay when it launches and the already accessible Google Wallet, thereby giving users the choice of payment platform which best suits their needs.

However, since Android Pay isn’t available just yet, users won’t be able to input and save their card details, but they can still register their Google account to work with the service and choose their preferred payment method.

It’s also worth noting that Android Pay won’t be compatible with all devices as the service requires NFC to function. If you’re unaware of how the payment platform works, you simply open up the Android Pay app on your handset and tap it against a supporting terminal to make a payment.

In order to protect its customers bank accounts from malicious hackers, Android Pay gives users a virtual account number thus keeping safe their actual one from being used and falling into the wrong hands.

Google claims that the service will work with over 700,000 retailers in USA conflict free with existing debit and credit cards — so, upon release, you should just have to enter your card details, and you’ll be good to go.

Are you excited for the release of Android Pay? I know I certainly am. Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

Come comment on this article: Google Play Services updated with support for Android Pay

Vine incorporates more music elements for posts in latest update

Posted by wicked August - 28 - 2015 - Friday Comments Off

There have been several Vine superstars that have gone on to make music records. Some musicians have used the video sharing app to get more followers and sell records as well. One of the most common comments in vines is “song?” whenever they get interested with the music used. It’s easy to see that music is a big part of Vine’s social identity, so it’s about time that they added more audio-centered features. The latest update does just that.

Looping sounds on the videos has been one of the most distinctive features of Vine, and they now bring it to another level with Snap to Beat. You now can choose from among the songs in Vine’s database or from your own to create perfect-looping music for your videos. Tap on the music note in the Details section after you’ve chosen a song. The Snap to Beat will tell you how much of the song you should use to make a great seamless loop and then trim your video to fit the clip, which is kind of the reverse of what usually happens.

But if you want to edit the audio separately, you can also turn off the Snap to Beat feature so you can have more control of what sounds and in what parts should be included in your clip. Vine is also now adding a Featured Tracks section so you can discover new music to add to your clips or to listen using other music streaming services. And if you want to know what song is playing on a clip, no need to wait on the creator or the other commenters. Just tap on the music note on the Vine and you’ll see the info you want.

Lastly, Vine is now added to the Billboard Social 50 chart, so that the most popular vines get the chance to be discovered by a wider audience. The Vine update is now rolling out to Android devices through the Google Play Store.

SOURCE: Vine

Waze now cautions drivers approaching dangerous intersections 

Posted by wicked August - 28 - 2015 - Friday Comments Off

A lot of drivers nowadays rely on navigation apps to help them reach destinations faster or drive around unfamiliar areas. Waze is one of the more popular ones available for mobile and so 5 major cities in the US are now partnering with them to caution drivers as they approach dangerous areas, based on data from the waze itself and from the local governments. This will hopefully eventually remove those areas from that category as fewer incidents should occur there.

The 5 cities involved in this project are Boston, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, and Washington D.C. Obviously, these are some of the busiest in terms of population and automobile traffic, in the country. The dangerous areas and intersections were determined not just from the data from Waze, but also from The City of Boston, City of Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT), New York Police Department, San Francisco Department of Public Health and the District Department of Transportation in Washington, D.C.

With the pooled data from these agencies and Waze itself, they determined the areas where there were high collision rates, high injury rates, a high number of vehicle to vehicle incidents, vehicle to bike incidents, and vehicle to pedestrian incidents. When you approach any of these areas, Waze will warn you with a voice and graphic notification and reminder to drive safely while approaching.

This is a pretty neat idea, and hopefully, this will go beyond just those five cities. And also, we hope that drivers will not get distracted with the notifications, therefore resulting in an incident or accident.

SOURCE: Waze

Trekkies rejoice! Star Trek themes now available on Swype keyboard

Posted by wicked August - 28 - 2015 - Friday Comments Off

Before all your Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings or Game of Thrones fandoms, one of the most die-hard group of geek fans out there are the Trekkies or those who love the Star Trek universe. And while fanboying/fangirling is now more mainstream than ever, that hasn’t doused the ardor of these fans, even though some weren’t that happy with the reboots. Another way you can aim to please Trekkies is by giving them digital bonuses, and now virtual keyboard Swype has done that very thing with their latest update.

There are a lot of things happening in this latest update, but what will catch the eyes of a lot of geeks are the 19 new Star Trek keyboard themes. And this isn’t just any imitation theme but a duly licensed undertaking, featuring characters and images from various incarnations like Star Trek™: The Original Series and Star Trek: The Next Generation™. You do have the most beloved characters like Captain Kirk, Mr. Spock, Sulu, Data, Worf, etc. The themed keyboards can actually help you pretend that you’re one of the crew members aboard the Starship Enterprise.

But for non-Trekkies, there are some other goodies for you in this Swype update. There is now an emoji keyboard which predicts and suggests emojis when you’re talking to your loved ones and mention words and phrases related to any of the existing emojis. So sometimes, you wouldn’t even need words to talk to them.

The phrase-prediction capabilities have also been enhanced so you now have multiple options. There is also predictive number entry that can detect if you’re trying to enter numbers but are instead accidentally keying in letters. The update to Swype is now available on the Google Play Store. Also, the Star Trek themes aren’t free and costs $0.99-$1.99 each.

SOURCE: Swype

Instagram not so square now,allows portrait and landscape orientation

Posted by wicked August - 28 - 2015 - Friday Comments Off

We’ve gotten used to cropping our photos into a square and viewing them as well in this format ever since Instagram came into our lives. But sometimes it gets frustrating, especially if the photo or video looks better when in landscape mode, especially if it’s that of a sprawling mountain range, the glorious sunset on a beach, or even those panoramic shots which some smartphones can take. But now Instagram has finally relented and is now allowing users to post their images and videos in formats other than the square one.

The photo sharing social juggernaut announced that starting today, you can choose to post your photo or video in both portrait and landscape orientations. This means no need to use third-party cropping apps anymore, no friends will get cut out of pictures (unless you really don’t want to include them in there), and that the media we post won’t feel so cramped anymore, if they’re not meant to be square.

So before posting the photo, all you need to do is tap the format icon and then choose portrait or landscape. The full-sized photo will appear on your friends’ or followers’ feed, so get ready to reorient your eyes again. But in your profile grid, the photo will appear as a center-cropped square, if you choose the landscape format. This new option is especially beneficial for video on Instagram, as most of them are meant for widescreen rather than the square we’ve been forced to use for the past years.

Another new thing in the update is that all filters, including intensity adjustments of filters, can be applied to videos too. The update is rolling out to Google Play Store today.

SOURCE: Instagram

Camera360 overhauls app, brings “Inspiration” and “Discovery”

Posted by wicked August - 27 - 2015 - Thursday Comments Off

There are tons of camera and photo editing apps competing with each other, and developers are constantly looking for something that will make them stand out, as well as constantly updating their product to keep up with consumers’ varying needs. One of the most popular ones out there is Camera360, and their version 7.0 not only redesigns the app itself, but brings two features that not a lot of their competitors have: Inspiration and Discovery.

At the center of this redesign and overhaul is still its Camera function, with a new User Interface while still continuing to bring users the features that they’re used to. What’s new is that it now integrates multiple modes, including more than 10 “selfie filters” that have been created to bring out “the most beautiful you.” The new design aims to make the user experience more “natural, smooth, and simple”, while at the same time, giving you powerful editing tools.

The “Inspiration” section meanwhile is where photographers, both professional and aspiring, can share stories behind their photos, like how they were able to achieve this effect or angle. You yourself can also share your tricks and secrets (well, those you want to share) so you can inspire others in your network as well. The “Discover” section is where you can have a little more fun with your mobile photography, by discovering other ways of taking photos or editing them into other formats like photo movie, poster camera, etc.

If you don’t have Camera360 yet, you can download it for free from the Google Play Store. If you already have it, check the page if the update has already rolled out to you.

SOURCE: Camera360

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