HP Slatebook x2 launched on HP web site with availability in August


HP has officially launched the HP Slatebook x2 on their web site for U.S. customers. The convertible tablet device is listed as being available in August 2013 with a starting price of $480. The Slatebook x2 is an Android tablet that comes with a detachable keyboard similar to the ASUS Transformer line of devices. The Slatebook x2 is also one of the first devices to hit the market with NVIDIA’s new Tegra 4 processor. Read more

Microsoft releases Office Mobile for Android smartphones


Microsoft has released an Office Mobile for Office 365 Subscribers app to the Google Play store which may benefit some users of the ubiquitous office suite. “May” is the key word as the app can only be used by those with an Office 365 subscription. In case you are not familiar with Microsoft’s Office 365 model, it offers users the ability to use the office suite for a monthly fee of $10, or $100 per year if paid in advance, versus laying out the cash to buy the full office suite. If you have an Office 365 subscription, the app will let you view and edit Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files. Read more

Asphalt 8: Airborne trailer surfaces, show some extremely impressive new gameplay


Asphalt is an extremely popular racing franchise for mobile devices that’s really come close to blurring the lines between console gaming and mobile gaming in its last few iterations. Now that we’ve gotten a look at the trailer for Asphalt 8: Airborne, it’s safe to say that trend is going to continue.

The trailer shows off the stunning graphics that the series is known for, as well as a few new gameplay tricks, including launching your car off of objects on a track and pulling off stunts in the air. Realistic? Probably not. Awesome? Definitely. It’s also coming with a brand new physics engine, 180 events, and 47 cars to test drive. Pretty impressive for a mobile game, right? Also, if you’ve managed to pick up a new Nexus 7, Asphalt 8 is optimized to run on its uber-high-resolution screen. Excited yet? Check out the video below to really get a feel for what they’re adding. Read more

MoDaCo.Switch for Galaxy S 4 passes original funding goal


The MoDaCo.Switch for the HTC One is awesome, there’s no denying that. Seamlessly switching between a carrier skinned ROM and vanilla Android on the fly is a feature that most people would love to have on their phones. Considering it was done on the HTC One, though, it would only be fair to extend that to the Google Play Edition of Samsung’s Galaxy S 4, right? If you’re an S 4 owner, your wait is (almost) over. The MoDaCo.Switch developers started an Indiegogo campaign to raise funding to bring the switch to the S 4, and in less than five days, they hit their £1,000 goal.

There’s still a few days left to go in the campaign, so if you want to chip in a bit extra to get early access to betas as they come available (or a cool T-shirt) you can hit the link below to throw some money at your computer monitor. Who’s excited to get this running on their S 4?

source: Indiegogo

Moto X to include pixel binning for video recording, will combine 4 pixels into 1 perfect pixel


Last week we got a chance to see Motorola’s Clear Pixel technology on the new DROIDs. You can read more about Clear Pixel here, but it’s more a less a way to capture more light, which also improves the speed of the sensor. In contrast HTC’s UltraPixel also captures more light, but it’s achieved at only 4MP, whereas Clear Pixel can achieve similar results with 10MP. We all know that megapixels don’t make the picture better, but when it comes to cropping, it’s much better to have 10MP as opposed to 4MP. The difference seems to lie in the microns. The Galaxy S 4 has 1.1 micrometers pixels, and the HTC One has 2.0 micrometers pixels, which is astounding. The Moto X falls somewhat in the middle at 1.4 micrometers pixels. This allows for more megapixels, but with the same low light performance as the HTC One.

However, pictures is only part of the story as we can expect a very high quality video camera as well. Word is that the Moto X has a special camera module that has x4HD video capture, which bins 4 pixels together to create one perfect pixel. This is basically similar to Nokia’s oversampling technology in which they bin 7 pixels into 1. It can also shoot 1080p video at 60 FPS and be played back in slow motion at 30 FPS. On top of all this, you get 3D audio recording with three different microphones.

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New Chromecast app developed allowing for streaming of local media


As expected, the recently released Chromecast was taken apart, put back together, rooted, hacked, and investigated deeply by tons of developers this past week, as the device became available to the public in limited quantities.

It looks like some good has already come out of it, as Koushik Dutta has already built an application that will allow users to stream local media from their phones straight to their TVs via Chromecast.

He made the announcement yesterday on his G+ page.

Wrote my first Chromecast app. Send anything in your gallery to your TV via the standard share button. Images and movies (at full framerate). It works like magic.

Also looking at sending music and playlists.

He later reveals that he is looking into working on a desktop application or Chrome extension which will allow for the same streaming of local media, but on the computer.

This definitely makes Chromecast even more useful for a ton of people, however the application cannot yet be distributed to the public because of Google’s policy with its Beta SDK, which states that written permission from Google is required before releasing the app. If Google sends it through to the Play Store, this will be good news for everyone.

Check out his demonstration video after the break. Read more

Google launches ‘Glass Creative Collective,’ provides five film schools with three sets of Glass each


Google’s most recent initiative, the Glass Creative Collective, strives to bring Glass to education— more specifically, film schools. Google has announced that it will be lending three sets of Glass each to five film schools, including The American Film Institute, CalArts, Rhode Island School of Design, UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television, and USC. The goal is to allow students to experiment to create an immersive experience with Glass, and find new ways that the product can be used in the film industry.

Here’s what Google had to say about it all on their +Google Glass page.

We’re really interested to find out how Glass will contribute to the craft of storytelling, specifically through film. So, we reached out to various film schools, including The American Film Institute, California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television and University of Southern California. They’ll start exploring how Glass can be used in production, documentary filmmaking, character development and things we haven’t yet considered …

Via: 9to5 Google
Source: Variety

Google to bring 10x faster WiFi to 7,000 Starbucks in the U.S.


A lot of people spend a good amount of their day in coffee shops such as Starbucks to enjoy a nice cup of Joe and free WiFi. However, the speeds are usually not anything to brag about. Well Google just announced a partnership with Starbucks in that they are going to speed that internet up a tad for 7.000 stores in the U.S. We are talking 10x faster speeds than what’s available now. In fact, they are hoping to make it 100x faster for those stores in Google Fiber cities.

There is only one catch and that is that it will take about 18 months to hit all the stores. Depending on where you live, you might be waiting for a bit.

Google and Starbucks seem to have a pretty nice partnership. Last month, they announced that customers who are connected to Starbucks WiFi can enjoy Google’s Play Music All Access for free, which is a very nice perk.

source: Google

Could Lenovo be the manufacturer for the next Nexus 7? LG? Samsung?


It’s only natural that we’re already talking about the third-generation Nexus 7, only a week after the second-generation version of the device was released.

It would be fair to assume that Asus would undeniably be the manufacturer of the next Nexus 7, assuming the success of the most recent Nexus 7 outperforms the first. However, some recent reports would suggest otherwise.

A rumor leaked the other day which threw the name “LG” into the conversation for the “N7-3.” It wouldn’t be a huge surprise, as the company has manufactured other Nexus devices in the past (Nexus 4), but to ditch Asus in the Nexus 7 series would be a surprise. Samsung’s name was thrown into the conversation as well, which also makes sense, considering the company is literally running the OEM market right now for Android devices.

The next bit of news is a bit more surprising— Lenovo’s name popped up as well. Numbers suggest the company is doing well overseas, but can you even name two devices Lenovo has made available to the United States, or at least has sold in high quantities? No doubt the company has done a good job in what it has tried to accomplish, but it hasn’t really extended its reach to the point where we could expect them to make the next Nexus 7.

Who would you guys like to see build the next Nexus 7 device? Would you hope Google remains loyal to Asus? Would you prefer them to move over to LG or Samsung? What about Lenovo?

Source: VR-Zone

Samsung responds to juicing benchmark allegations


Late last night we reported that Samsung might have been trying to force their benchmark scores to look a little better on the Galaxy S 4. It was found that the phone would run at higher frequencies when running benchmark apps. Samsung has chimed in on the matter and claims that the phone will run at higher frequencies for apps used in full-screen mode but also demand substantial performance. Benchmark apps would be included in this, but so would S Browser, the Gallery, Camera, and the Video Player. Samsung actually lowers the GPU frequency to 480MHz for certain gaming apps that could cause an overload. When using the other apps I mentioned, the GPU speed goes back up to 533MHz. This move is more for providing “optimal performance” for customers, not to increase benchmark results. Hit the break for their full statement.

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