Asus has already teased a shadowing image of its first smartwatch in advance of next week’s IFA event in Berlin. SlashGear noticed that the Google Android Wear partner offered more device details on its official Facebook page with a sketch of the watch, along with some handwritten notes. Unlike the first two Android Wear watches, it looks like the Asus model has some style: A sandblasted backside as well as a polished satin watch frame and genuine leather strap, for example. As the Android Wear market gets crowded, I wondered how new entrants would make their products stand out. Looks like Asus has a potential answer: Make watches that actually look nice.
Google continues to use its Google+ social network as a way to backup and share photos and videos taken on mobile devices. The latest feature is an dead simple way to upload videos from Google+ to YouTube. Read more »
Eyefi, the company that lets you pop a Wi-Fi enabled SD card into a traditional DSLR camera, has built an If This Then That integration that will make it easier to dictate how and where photos are shared. Pics taken from the DSLR get sent to the Eyefi cloud, where a user can then add tags that will trigger the IFTTT recipe. So one might tag a photo #social, and the recipe would share it on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. It apparently works in reverse too. If you want to get a snapshot from your smartphone into the Eyefi cloud just tag it #eyefi (or whatever) on Instagram and it gets stored in the Eyefi cloud.
T-Mobile is determined to find the right tablet plan to lure more 4G slates to its network. On September 3 it will start matching its customers’ smartphone data allotments on tablets for $10 a month. Read more »
Does a $100 price cut on Surface 2 signal the beginning of the end for Windows RT? It’s easy to think so but there are few reasons that Microsoft’s RT strategy might not be done quite yet. Read more »
The Q20, a phone that combines the classic button-heavy Blackberry approach with the modern BB10 operating system, may not come out in 2014 as previously expected. Read more »
Verizon is the last major U.S. carrier to get the VoLTE ball rolling but the wait is nearly over. Soon, the company will introduce Advanced Calling 1.0 with video calls and HD Voice across its LTE network. Read more »
California finally passed a kill switch law for cell phones. Here’s a quick explanation of how it works, and why not everyone is thrilled about it. Read more »
LG’s G3 Stylus phone may look a lot like the G3 flagship, but looks aren’t everything. The phone adds a digital pen for note taking while using lesser hardware all around — particularly in the 5.5-inch display and its 960 x 540 resolution. Read more »
Opera for Android has increased its user numbers 73 percent year-on-year, even though its share of the Android market actually appears to be falling. Read more »
This week’s podcast includes a bit about user interfaces for the smart home and wearables, as well as a deep dive into the industrial internet. Read more »
Mobile networks track loads of information about our locations, and it’s becoming easier and easier for governments to get ahold of that info with new surveillance technologies. Read more »
Ball boys at this year’s US Open will be wearing a connected sport shirt made by Ralph Lauren using OMsignal technology. Here’s how they’ll work. Read more »
Google updated two of its Google Apps for iOS on Monday while also adding a third new title. Docs and Sheets get the updates that the Android versions gained in June: The ability to open Microsoft Office docs and spreadsheets. Google Slides is new for iOS, bringing an option to create presentations on Apple iPhones and iPads. It too has Office compatibility support. Google’s strong support for iOS continues to make it very easy to use Google services, even if you prefer Apple’s hardware: One reason I’ll very likely I’ll buy a new iPhone later this year to complement my Android handset.
Last year, Motorola debuted Skip with the Moto X: An NFC clip to unlock your phone. This year, it appears the second edition of Skip will be a Bluetooth key fob for even more features. Read more »
As Sprint tinkers with its family plans to encourage prepaid customers to go postpaid, T-Mobile is tweaking its entry-level prepaid plan. The barebones $40 Simple Starter plan is a good deal for light data users, but its 500MB cap means it wasn’t an option for many. On Monday, T-Mobile announced a $5 add-on which brings the LTE data cap up to a more reasonable 2GB. After that’s used up, your data gets shut off unless you buy a one-day 500MB bucket for $5 or a seven-day 1GB plan for $10. T-Mobile warns the plan is subject to change, and it will be available starting on September 3.
Mozilla is ready to tackle the phone market in India with its newest Firefox OS handset launching this week. The specs are meager for the $33 price and web-based software making it a tough sell against competing Androids that run native apps. Read more »
As much as we like to think of the internet of things as something linked by standards, it will be a hodgepodge of trapped sensor data for quite some time. Read more »
As QHD-resolution displays become more common, the question becomes when the increased resolution becomes indistinguishable. An LG engineer said it designs its displays to be used at 8-10 inches, which is closer than the 12-inch distance previously commonly used to define a “retina” display. Read more »
Huawei has taken over the no. 3 smartphone sales spot in the world and has no plans to changes its strategy of using Google Android. Windows Phone hasn’t been profitable for the company which also sees Samsung’s Tizen play a lost cause. Read more »
Next week you’ll have not one but two round Android Wear smartwatches to choose from. LG has a fully-circular G Watch model that one-ups the Moto 360 and looks far more appealing that the company’s currently available wearable device. Read more »
Mobile device companies want you using as many of their products and services as they can get away with forcing you to use. But if you want to live a cross-platform life, here are a few tips. Read more »
Only have $300 to spend on an off-contract phone? If you don’t mind a large handset, Huawei’s Ascend Mate2 is worth the look. It has some advanced features, a solid camera and a massive battery along with LTE support. Read more »
Samsung was among the first key hardware partners to produce both Chromebooks and the chips that run them. These days the maturing Chromebook market has turned to more vendors and different chips to power the Chrome OS laptops. Read more »
While the world looks towards Cupertino in September for signs of a new iPhone, developers will have an eye on Europe as Google stops listing apps that offer in-app purchases as “Free”. Read more »
Might a new version of Android bring a new Nexus tablet? It’s looking more likely that HTC is building the reported Nexus 9 for Android L. More Moto X+1 images leaked this week and Asus is ready to enter the Android Wear market. Read more »
The idea of a payment card with a programmable magnetic strip sounded great when Coin debuted it last year. Unfortunately, those who pre-ordered won’t be getting their Coin this summer; the device launch is pushed back to Spring 2015. Read more »
Picking the perfect sneakers for your particular stride isn’t as easy as it sounds but runScribe can help. The small sensor attaches to your shoes and measures 13 different datapoints about the way you run, which can help prevent injuries. Read more »
A judge ordered Typo to stop selling a keyboard for iPhone because the product appeared to violate BlackBerry’s patents. Ryan Seacrest’s company kept selling them anyways, a court order shows. Read more »
Nearly 2 out of 3 U.S. smartphone owners don’t download a single app in a given month. Isn’t this the age of the mobile app economy? It is, but most of the growth is long over at this point in the cycle. Read more »
Vodafone’s share price rose Friday on rumors of a takeover bid by AT&T. We’ve so been here before — AT&T promised back in January that it wouldn’t launch a bid for the subsequent 6 months. China Mobile is also reportedly interested in buying a stake in Vodafone. On top of that, AT&T is also reportedly considering buying Ireland’s Eircom as a way into Europe, and Vodafone itself was rumored to be considering a bid for T-Mobile US, so y’know, it’s probably worth seeing what actually happens before getting too excited. One thing that has happened, though, is that Vodafone just stumped up $96 million to take over Greek fixed-line provider Hellas Online.
As a farewell gift on his trip to retirement, noted tipster @evleaks has one more leak left to share: The Moto X+1 for Verizon. The images match up with earlier rumors and whispers of a larger Motorola handset, very likely with a higher resolution screen than the 720p display found on last year’s Moto X. Aside from the overall size bump, the speaker grilles are larger and there appear to be two of them, suggesting the possibility of stereo front-facing speakers. In keeping with what helped make the Moto X a popular phone, the successor model looks to be running a mainly stock, skin-less version of Android.
With so many little moving parts to the machine that makes iPhones, a supply issue can easily affect production schedules. Reuters says a display challenge could impact early availability of the iPhone 6. Read more »
iOS users with Brazilian accounts can no longer download the anonymous messaging app, but Google and Microsoft are reportedly not yet complying with the interim injunction. Read more »
Need a portable phone battery that isn’t bigger than your phone? Check out Charge Ninja, a low-cost credit-card sized battery with keychain cable that’s enough to get you through the rest of the day when your handset battery dies. Read more »
Two-thirds of the employees at Chapters Health System opted to pick an HP Chromebook 14 over a Windows laptop or iPad, which has made the IT department happy. There are cheaper Windows laptops coming to compete but they don’t address reasons people pick a Chromebook. Read more »
Beacon provider Estimote is getting deeper into the context business with Bluetooth-enabled stickers called Nearables that will let your smartphone know more about it’s environment and enable developers to build powerful new experiences. Read more »
According to a new report from OpenSignal, 21 percent of Android devices are running 4.4 KitKat, but those users are mostly clustered in the United States and Western Europe. Read more »
The iPhone 6 is expected to debut next month and we already know that it will support Wi-Fi calling. Voice over LTE might not be far behind as Apple is seeking experience engineers to help add VoLTE support. It could be a software update away. Read more »
Watch for the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 to debut next month. While waiting, take a peek at these reported benchmarks for Samsung’s new 64-bit Exynos chip expected to power the large-screened phone. Read more »