The Umbrella app provides security advice for activists and journalists in hostile environments

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While most of us use our smartphones to organize our daily lives, staying in contact with friends and loved ones through instant messaging and social media outlets, playing games or watching Netflix, smartphones can often be a useful tool for activists and humanitarians in a hostile environment. But how does one safely report on the latest bout of political violence or expose a government cover-up? The London-based group, Security First, has developed an app called Umbrella, aimed at making it easier and safer for activists to carry out their work.

GFXBench listing reveals specifications of Amazon’s rumoured $50 tablet

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While Amazon recently laid off some of its engineers after the Fire Phone failed to set the world alight, there has been persistent rumours that the global retailer is developing a budget-friendly tablet that could be priced at just $50. Amazon has so far declined to either confirm or deny the existence of such a project, although it has allegedly been spotted being put through its paces on GFXBench under the ‘Amazon KFFOWI’ moniker.

[TA Deals] Save 87% on the Android Marshmallow Mobile Developer Course

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If you have a great idea for a smartphone or smartwatch app, but you don’t know how to bring it to life, then this course may be just what you need. The Android Marshmallow Mobile Developer Course on offer from Talk Android Deals will help you learn how to code, developing impressive new apps for both smartphones and wearables from scratch along the way. Best of all, the course is now discounted to just $24.99, a whopping 87% saving!

Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0 takes just 35 minutes to reach 80 percent charge

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Charging your handset overnight used to be part of our nightly routine, but now? Not so much. Thanks to Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 2.0 technology, we can charge our devices whenever we want, and still have enough juice to make it through the day. And it’s going to get even better because Qualcomm has just announced Quick Charge 3.0 that will allow smartphones to go from being as dead-as-a-doornail to 80 percent charge in just 35 minutes.

Qualcomm Snapdragon Flight dev platform lifts off in drone reference

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Qualcomm may best be known to smartphone phone fans for their processors powering so many devices. However, the company does get into other areas, sometimes on the back of the same technology powering smartphones. Today they revealed their latest robotics project, the Qualcomm Snapdragon Flight development platform. Qualcomm says the technology will enable manufacturers to build consumer class robots and drones, which they showed off with a reference design for a new 4K flying camera.

[TA Deals] Save 87% on the Android Marshmallow Mobile Developer Course to make smartphone and wearable apps

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So, you have an idea for a fantastic new app for your smartphone or wearable device, but you aren’t a developer and the idea of coding sends shivers down your spine because it’s the great unknown. No worries. Why not take a look at the Android Marshmallow Mobile Developer Course on offer from Talk Android Deals, where you can learn to develop impressive new apps for both smartphones and wearables from scratch.

Sony adds binaries for 64-bit devices

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Sony has uploaded a new set of operating system binaries for their first 64-bit devices based on Android 5.1 Lollipop. The new files will work on the Sony Xperia Z3+, Xperia Z4 Tablet and the Xperia Z4 Tablet WiFi. All of these devices are based on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor. With these files uploaded to the Sony AOSP for Xperia web site, the custom ROM community will be able to more easily produce customized, AOSP based ROMs.

Vulkan API promises significant graphical improvements for Android gaming and 3D graphics

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3D graphics have been moving very quickly in the mobile space, getting increasingly competitive with traditional home video game consoles and the like. That trend will continue now that Vulkan, a 3D rendering API, is coming to Android to improve the graphics experience on mobile devices.

Vulkan is a much more efficient API than Open GL ES that Android currently uses, offering a significantly lower CPU overhead and better tools for developers. A video showcasing a horde of gnomes was created to really show off the difference between the two APIs, and it’s incredibly apparent how much better Vulkan should be for mobile gaming. 

Chris Lacy’s Link Bubble gets an update to v1.5 along with a change of ownership

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Link Bubble users will be happy to note that the app has received a substantial update to version 1.5, with features such as drop down elements, domain redirects as well as a Material Design overhaul making an appearance. Link Bubble’s creator, Chris Lacy, has also taken the opportunity to announce that Link Bubble and another of his apps, Tap Path, along with all related assets, have been sold to an as yet unnamed buyer. Join us after the break for the update’s changelog as well as more information on the change in ownership.

Looking for something new to spice up your home screen? Check out Zoopreme Widgets by Erik Blue

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Spicing up your homescreen to your liking has always been one of Androids selling points. The sky, along with your imagination, is always the limit when it comes to decorating your Android device. Thankfully, we have plenty of talented and artistic developers out there that create beautiful widgets and skins for our devices. A new Zooper Widget theme that I recently stumbled upon certainly has that creative style that I think you all can appreciate. The app is called Zoopreme and is available on the Google Play Store for $1. If you’re already familiar with Zooper Widget Pro, then this will be very easy to apply.