Tech News

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Update - 305



Posted: 26 Mar 2012 01:42 PM PDT
For those of you charitable folks who recently purchased the Humble Bundle 2 game pack you will be pleased to hear that a new game has been added to the mix. Supporters now have access to the game Snuggle Truck and will also be thrown in for new contributors as well. That brings the game pack to a maximum of six games based on how much you contribute. In order to qualify for the sixth game, Swords and Soldiers, you must contribute more than the average donation which was $6.42 at the time of writing this.
Snuggle Truck is much more fun that it sounds and is best described like this:
Snuggle Truck is a trials-style, 2D challenge-platformer. Players race a pickup truck filled with stuffed animals to the finish line, while rocks, bumps and other hazards conspire to throw the player’s precious cargo out of the vehicle. The game includes a level editor and access to thousands of user-created levels.
Whats more, Android backers will eventually get access to the satirical version of the game called Smuggle Truck. It’s basically the same game except with a controversial twist – immigration. You can look for this unedited version of the game to be announced to Humble Bundle supporters sometime in the near future. In the meantime, jump past the break for a link to further details and a demo video of Snuggle Truck in action. 
Click here to view the embedded video.
source: Humble Bundle






Posted: 26 Mar 2012 01:32 PM PDT
One of the primary benefits of the Android Operating System that keeps the true tech-geeks hooked is the the near infinite customisation available. From day one, as soon as you switch your Android device on for the very first time you’re presented with wallpapers, live wallpapers, widgets, icons, folders, menus, custom launchers, all of which you can tinker and tweak until your heart’s content. For the average consumer that’s more than enough to keep them going, but over at XDA Developers, they’re far from average, and like to customize every nook and cranny available… and some that aren’t.
There are thousands of boot animations out there in cyberspace ranging from the dull, carrier branded logos to the mesmerising and colourful Nexus splash variations. So here’s a question, why should you be stuck with whichever boot animation your phone comes pre-loaded with? The answer, you don’t have to be. D4rKn3sSyS from XDA Developers created a Boot Animation Manager tool for Windows that makes the process as easy as pie. Follow the instructions below to get started.
  • Ensure your phone has root access
  • Fire up any computer running Windows with Java installed
  • Download Boot Animation Manager from here
  • Connect your phone via USB
  • Drag and drop the animation that you’d like to install
  • Preview it
  • Backup your original boot animation
  • Push your chosen animation to you device
  • Restart your device and marvel at your new boot animation!
So what are you waiting for folks? Get searching for an animation that floats your boat or perhaps it’s time to get really creative and design your own.
source : XDA




Posted: 26 Mar 2012 01:09 PM PDT
Sega just announced that Phantasy Star Online 2 will be coming to the PC and PS Vita, but it will also be hitting Android and iOS. It will be a little different though as in it won’t have the same online cross-platform gameplay, but focus instead on social game elements, simpler controls, and character creation. Basically, the Android version can transfer data to either the PC or Vita version. The understanding is that you will be able to play the game on your Android device, but it will be solo gameplay, and the progression will transfer to the PC or Vita, which are the actual online games.
Phantasy Star Online 2 will be free to play and transaction based (freemium). The PC version will be out this summer and the Vita version will be out in early 2013. We are hearing that the Android version will release some time in between, which has a Winter release written all over it.
source: droidgamers





Posted: 26 Mar 2012 12:53 PM PDT
Finding the best Twitter client has been somewhat of a goal of mine and being that there aren’t very many options to chose from makes it pretty easy. At this point I have found that Boid is my most favorite twitter app but unfortunately even with all of its recent updates still lacks widgets. There is also another up and coming hopeful that I have been keeping an eye on that goes by the name “Carbon For Android.” From what I have seen already, they have a pretty awesome app in the making and I am dying to get my hands on it.
Over the past few months the folks at Carbon for Android have been providing Google+ followers a glimpse at what they have in store and their most recent demo video shows the app nearing completion. From what I can tell without even using this app is that it’s going to be a winner. Just the way in which the ICS themed app transitions between tabs and users is simply beautiful and unique all in its own. You gotta check out this video after the break and let me know what you think. (If you look close you will see the Talk Android handle too! Carbon obviously knows their stuff :-) )
Click here to view the embedded video.
Looks pretty sweet, huh? Now lets hope they managed to incorporate a scrolling widget somewhere in there too!




Posted: 26 Mar 2012 12:15 PM PDT
With all the talk about NFC, how about the ability to pay merchants by simply telling them your name? One of the most popular mobile payments service providers, Square, just reintroduced the Card Case app as Pay With Square. Card Case has actually been around for a while, but now it’s a whole lot better. With Pay With Square, the biggest change is the ability to automatically open a tab when you arrive, which means you never have to touch your phone. All you have to do is tell them your name and your done. You will also be able to find supported merchants quicker, save them to your favorites, and easily share them with your friends.
Hit the break for a demo video and download links

Click here to view the embedded video.

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Posted: 26 Mar 2012 08:29 AM PDT
 
We know you all are getting antsy for the upcoming HTC One X smartphone for AT&T, especially after hearing a lucky few already have their hands on the actual device. Naturally some of you were waiting for some benchmarks and now you have them. While not featuring the Tegra 3 beast found in the international version, you’ll notice the Snapdragon S4 chip is a screamer. In fact— you’ll note that the phone crushes the competition… and it’s not even close. You’ll find the smartphone scored well over 2000 in the task-intensive Vellamo benchmark test, while scoring a stunning 4,952 in the Quadrant benchmark test. Guess those Snapdragon S4 benchmarks ran earlier in the year weren’t a fluke folks.
Ladies and gentlemen, if there wasn’t a reason before to covet this device, seeing these scores should make you change your mind. The wait shouldn’t be too much longer for the awesome smartphone. Hit the break for an additional benchmark screenshot.

source: pocketnow
via: AC Forums




Posted: 26 Mar 2012 07:55 AM PDT

We all know Android devices are powerful, really powerful. However, Android owners will always encounter resistance and claims from competing platforms such as iOS or RIM to stake a claim of arguing its devices are more effective and powerful than their Android counterparts. Returning to the competition party is the Windows Phone platform. Although wildly unpopular and continuously dwarfed by its competition, the platform has its eyes on taking back the lost marketshare while giving Android specifically a run for its money. Microsoft created an interesting phone competition called the Windows Phone Challenge (also called Smoked By Windows Phone) which essentially tests to see if an Android or iPhone owner’s device is faster than Windows Phone-based devices. A casual challenger decided to go out and test the challenge for fun.
Sahas Katta who is a Galaxy Nexus owner, but admitted fan of Window Phone’s design went out to his local Microsoft Store and test the Windows Phone Challenge with some not so surprising results. When tasked to show weather for two different cities, the Galaxy Nexus beat the Windows Phone. In fact, the Microsoft Store assistant going against Katta had two weather tiles pinned to her start screen, yet Katta was clever enough to have his weather widgets pinned to his homescreen while disabling the lockscreen on his smartphone, enabling him to show his information within a moment of pressing his power button. The Microsoft Store employees who witnessed the competiton were perplexed and ultimately unwilling to identify Katta as a winner of the competiton, giving the excuse of Katta needing to show the weather for “two different cities in two different states” to qualify as a winner. In case you’re a non-believer— it’s possible to replicate Katta’s results too: remember Android has a native option to disable the lock screen and all you need to download is one extra third-party weather widget. Talk about being a party pooper.
All was not completely lost though. Ben Rudolph of Microsoft who was one of the key figures responsible for the Smoked By Windows phone competition took notice of the embarassing situation for Katta and offered his kind words of apology:
Naturally Katta had his own post:
“If anyone from Microsoft would like to have a rematch, I would be happy to smoke a Windows Phone with Android, again.”
Well said Katta. Well said.
UPDATE:
Looks like they are going to make things right as Ben Rudolph sent the following tweet a little while ago
Hey @sahaskatta , @Microsoftstore & I want to make things right. So I’ve got a laptop & phone (& apology) for you. Email me!
and also followed up again with this tweet:
I stand behind #smokedbywindowsphone wins (and losses) 100%…even when I’m not the one doing the challenges. And always will!
source: The Verge





Posted: 26 Mar 2012 07:15 AM PDT
With the recent release of CyanogenMod 7.2-RC1, the most famous Android ROM developers just released two videos. The first is an introduction to 7.2 and the other is an overview of the settings. In the introduction video they show you all the cool lock screen features and various other settings. Pay attention because it’s done in a rapid-fire fashion. In the settings overview video, they cover the settings layout, anonymous statistics, system update, and changelog.
Hit the break for both videos

Click here to view the embedded video.

Click here to view the embedded video.




Posted: 26 Mar 2012 06:57 AM PDT
Those of you living in the UK won’t have to wait much longer for HTC’s most anticipated devices of the year. Reports are coming in that both the One X and One S are officially up for preorder with mobile giant Vodafone. It will be offering the One X in both grey and white for free on contracts of £41 or more per month, which gets you 900 minutes, unlimited text messaging and 1GB of monthly data. The phone can also be found for as little as £26 per month, though customers would have to pay a hefty £299 upfront to get the device at that rate.
The One S will be available for free on contracts of £36 per month, which will snag you 600 minutes, unlimited text messaging and 1GB of monthly data. The phone is also available for as little as £26 per month, but like the One X— customers will need to pay £199 upfront in order to get the phone at that price.
The fact that both Beats Audio-powered devices are now available for preorder means the official release is imminent for both smartphones. Let’s hope Vodafone doesn’t make interested buyers wait too long for the latest and greatest iteration of HTC’s new and improved Sense UI.
source: Vodafone UK




Posted: 26 Mar 2012 06:36 AM PDT
You gotta love the development community for Android. It’s amazing what things they come up with. The latest is from RootzWiki and is for all the AT&T Samsung Galaxy S II Skyrocket owners. Your wait for Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich is over. Well not technically. This is a leaked build that you can manually install. This is definitely an official build, but not the final version so please keep in mind there will most likely be issues. It’s at least fairly recent with a date of March 14, but your guess is as good as mine as to how ready it is for prime time. Anyways, if you’ve got the guts, head over to the source link and give it a shot or join in on the discussion.
source: rootzwiki

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