Nest thermostats add compatability with third-party home automation products

Nest privacy

It was only a matter of time before the now Google-owned Nest Learning Thermostat (and smoke detector) became even more integrated in the “Internet of things.”

Now, the device can be paired and controlled with other home automation products, including Pebble smartwatches (to check and control the temperature in your home), ivee (voice-controlled home manager) and Life360 (an app used to check the location of family and friends and can adjust the temperature when people enter and leave your home).

WallyHome, a device that checks for water leaks, is also on the list of compatible products, as is Rachio, which controls sprinklers in the house for fires. Expect more and more products to become compatible with Nest, as Google is looking for more partners to expand the capabilities of its device.

Source: Engadget

MetroPCS offering entry-level Alcatel Onetouch Pop 7 tablet

Alcatel onetouch

If you’re a MetroPCS customer and in the market for a new, cheap tablet, there’s a pretty good deal available available for you right now.

The prepaid carrier (through T-Mobile) is offering the Alcatel Onetouch Pop 7 tablet for $149 (plus tax) on a pretty inexpensive data plan. For $10/month, you can get unlimited data, which siphons off 1GB  of data to the Pop 7 tablet. If you add the device to an existing plan, you’ll get a $5 monthly discount off your bill. Here are the rates for current subscribers, straight from MetroPCS/T-Mobile’s press release..

  • $10 / month: Unlimited data with first 1GB of high-speed data at up to 4G speeds
  • $20 / month: Unlimited data with first 3GB of high-speed data at up to 4G speeds
  • $30 / month: Unlimited data with first 5GB of high-speed data at up to 4G speeds

The tablet itself isn’t much in itself — a 1.3 GHz dual-core processor, 7-inch display, 8.9 mm thin, Wi-Fi/4G/Bluetooth and Android 4.2 Jelly Bean — but it still isn’t a bad deal for prepaid customers looking to expand their tech arsenal.

Hit the break for the link to the press release.

Source: MetroPCS/T-Mobile

Sony reportedly launching 12-inch tablet in 2015

Sony_Logo_01_TA_CES_2014

According to sources to DigiTimes, Sony will be launching a 12-inch tablet in quarter 1 of next year. Several other vendors are also developing large-size tablets for launch in the first or second quarters, according to Taiwan-based supply chain makers. The sources say that Sony’s tablet will be high-end and come with a stylus. 

Large-screen tablets are all the rage these days, with Samsung releasing its 10.1-inch Pro series earlier this year, and Microsoft releasing its Surface Pro 3.

Source: DigiTimes

Samsung Galaxy S 5 to get Android 5.0 Lollipop in December

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When Android 5.0 Lollipop launches soon, Nexus devices will be the first to receive the latest version of Android. From there on out, it is up to hardware manufacturers to work on updating devices. Owners of flagship devices should expect to see a software update before anyone else. HTC is committed to pushing Android 5.0 to within 90 days of its launch, but Samsung has not given a timetable.

A new report claims that the Galaxy S 5 will get the software update in December. This would be for the global version of the device; therefore, United States owners of the Galaxy S 5 should expect it early in 2015. If you are eager to know what Samsung has in store for TouchWiz with Android 5.0, take a look at this leak.

Source: SamMobile

Amazon launches App Store in main Android app

The Amazon logo is seen on a podium duri

Before now, the only way to download apps from the Amazon Appstore was to download the apk for the Appstore online, and then download apps. Last month, however, Amazon launched the functionality to download apps through the official Amazon app. All you have to do is head to “Shop by Department,” and you’ll find a new category called “Apps & Games.”

Source: TeleCrunch

How to beam files and photos from one phone to another with the new Android Beam in Android Lollipop

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Android Beam debuted in Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, which was kind of cool at the time, but not all that useful. With Android 5.0 Lollipop, Google has upped the game by adding Android Beam to the Share menu and allowing you to send files, documents, or even photos from one phone to another phone by simply touching the two devices together. It will even work for files or photos that are stored in the cloud, as in not physically on your device. Assuming both devices have NFC, and at least the sending device has Android Lollipop or higher, it’s quite easy to do.

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Inbox by Gmail shows up in Chrome Web Store

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Earlier this week Google introduced a new alternative to email clients, and their Gmail platform in particular, with the launch of a new product called Inbox. The app is supposed to represent a new way for processing email and tasks and has been described as a melding of Gmail and Google Now. Inbox has also proven to be very popular with technology early adopters as people clamor for invites to be able to try out the new platform. If you are fortunate enough to already be in on the Inbox fun, you may want to head over to the Chrome Web Store to grab the desktop web client for Inbox. Read more