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Saturday, March 28, 2015

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Pebble Time concludes Kickstarter campaign, pledges exceed $20 million

Posted: 28 Mar 2015 02:47 PM PDT


Late in February, the successor to the very popular Pebble smartwatch was announced. Just as the original, the Pebble Time found its home launching through a Kickstarter campaign. Consumers could make pledges and receive units of their own for less than the future retail price. We knew that the Pebble Time would be successful on Kickstarter. After all, the original Pebble was backed by nearly 70,000 people. The Pebble Time surpassed that mark with 78,471 backers and a pledge total reached $20,338,986. This means that the Pebble Time holds the title as the most funded project in Kickstarter's history.

Backers will start receiving Pebble Time units in May.

Source: Pebble Time (Kickstarter)

Come comment on this article: Pebble Time concludes Kickstarter campaign, pledges exceed $20 million

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HTC One M9 pre-orders shipments to start Monday, March 30 in U.S.

Posted: 28 Mar 2015 12:52 PM PDT

HTC has sent out emails to people in the U.S. who have pre-ordered the HTC One M9, informing them that the first shipments of the smartphone should begin on Monday, March 30.

Android Central received the following email from HTC concerning the shipment status of the HTC One M9

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Hands-on: Amzer Double Layer Hybrid Case for the HTC One M9

Posted: 28 Mar 2015 12:37 PM PDT

Good protection adds a kickstand to make better use of the screen and those speakers.

Here's a quick look at the Amzer Hybrid Case for the HTC One M9. It's got a soft silicone underlayer that fits up against your phone and protects the back, sides top and bottom while still giving full access to the ports and buttons. And on top of that goes a rigid plastic shell for the more serious protection.

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VLC For Android 1.2 Adds Audio Playlists And Better Android TV Support, Plus A Few Bug Fixes

Posted: 28 Mar 2015 12:01 PM PDT

unnamed The popular Video LAN Client may finally have a stable release for Android, but that doesn't mean it can't be improved. The 1.2 update adds support for audio playlists, which was apparently missing from the previous releases. Unfortunately due to the limitations of M3U files (the default playlist type for the desktop version of VLC) it's tricky to simply copy your playlists from your computer to your phone. You'll probably need to set them up manually in the app, as below.

Read More

VLC For Android 1.2 Adds Audio Playlists And Better Android TV Support, Plus A Few Bug Fixes was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Thrustmaster Score-A Controller Review: A Serviceable Gamepad That's A Few Notes Shy Of A Recommendation

Posted: 28 Mar 2015 12:01 PM PDT

I have been hunting for an ideal Android game controller for a long time. I've tried tons of them: tiny, retro, travel-oriented, and full-size. None have hit that perfect combination of portability and utility (for as much as "utility" can be applied to a gaming accessory) that makes it a recommendation for everyone. Thrustmaster, a minor player in the gaming accessory market, has had its Score-A Bluetooth controller that's specifically designed for Android available at retail for a while now.

Read More

Thrustmaster Score-A Controller Review: A Serviceable Gamepad That's A Few Notes Shy Of A Recommendation was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Future Shop in Canada to end, some locations to rebrand under Best Buy

Posted: 28 Mar 2015 10:54 AM PDT

Future Shop parent Best Buy is consolidating, with some stores closing, other rebranding.

Best Buy outlined its plans in a statement released today, saying it had conducted a review of its Canadian operations before making these changes. Roughly half the locations will survive the cuts.

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T-Mobile begins shipping Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 edge and HTC M9 phones to pre-order customers

Posted: 28 Mar 2015 10:37 AM PDT

T-Mobile has sent emails to people who have pre-ordered the Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 edge and HTC One M9, alerting them that shipments have started for the smartphones.

Android Central has received a tip about these shipments from one of our readers and we have independently confirmed T-Mobile has started shipping the Galaxy S6 and S6 edge.

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A closer look at the ZTE Blade S6

Posted: 28 Mar 2015 10:22 AM PDT

While many of us are excited about the Samsung Galaxy S6, there's another S6 phone worth talking about. During a media event last night in New York, the ZTE Blade S6 caught our attention. It's powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 octa-core processor, running the latest Android 5.0 Lollipop operating system. It's currently available online globally in selected markets for $249.99 USD.

Let's take a look.

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The HTC One M9+ has shown itself again

Posted: 28 Mar 2015 10:13 AM PDT

In yet another leak, the HTC One M9+ has made an appearance, this time with some official-looking press images. The images confirm what we already know about the design of the device. It will be constructed of aluminum and feature a Duo Camera setup on the back with the main camera clocking in at 20 megapixels. The front of the device remains the same, but with the addition of a fingerprint scanner beneath the screen. To fit it in, HTC split the bottom speaker into two parts, flanking the oblong fingerprint scanner.

This leak carries a different color scheme than the last one, with a charcoal base and gold accents that make it look mighty fine. Specs-wise, the rumors are pointing towards a 64-bit octa-core MediaTek processor, 5-inch QHD (2560×1440) display and 3GB RAM, improving upon the One M9. So far, the device seems to be headed to China, with no word on an international release. HTC China is holding an event on April 8 that should reveal more about the One M9+.

HTC One M9 Plus (2)

Source: @upleaks (1), (2)

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The HTC One M9+ has its design showcased in latest leak

Posted: 28 Mar 2015 10:11 AM PDT


Renowned leaker @Upleaks has posted a couple of press renders clearly showing the design of the much-anticipated upscaled variant of HTC's flagship smartphone of 2015, the One M9.

As can be seen in the image above, the design of the M9+'s chassis is extremely similar to the standard One M9, with only a few minor alterations. One being a second UltraPixel camera on the back of the device. Another, a fingerprint scanner beneath the screen on the front.

If recent speculation is anything to go by, the One M9+ is set to pack a 5.2-inch Quad HD display, a high-end octa-core Mediatek CPU, 3GB of RAM, a 20-megapixel rear-facing camera, a 5-megapixel front-facing shooter and a 2,840 mAh non-removable battery.

As with all leaks and rumors, we have to take the alleged design and specifications with a large pinch of salt until HTC provides us with some solid evidence regarding what it has in store for its next flagship phablet, but thankfully we don't have to wait too much longer until we find out as the Taiwanese company has a press event scheduled for April 8.

Source: Twitter

Come comment on this article: The HTC One M9+ has its design showcased in latest leak

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Create your own Sense 7 themes for the HTC One M9 using their handy web tool

Posted: 27 Mar 2015 07:50 PM PDT

HTC Themes landing

If you've got a little time to kill this weekend, why not create a theme for the now available HTC One M9? HTC recently launched a handy web tool which allows anyone — both novices and pros alike — to build their own Sense 7 theme. The site is pretty intuitive and easy to use, while at the same time providing enough customizable UI elements that you can take it as far as you'd like.

HTC Themes 2

You can pick different wallpapers (or your own) for placement on several HTC apps: home screen, lock screen, app drawer, Dot View app, or messaging apps — then tweak all the colors and icons to your liking. From there, you can even change up the sounds and font, then save everything to your account and post online for other Sense 7 users to download. Veteran themers can try out HTC Themes' Maker Pro section to really get in depth.

According the landing page, HTC Themes will soon have its own app for theme creation on the go, although it's currently linking to the BlinkFeed app on Google Play. In either case, HTC Themes is something to check out while you debate picking up an HTC One M9.

[HTC Themes]

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YouTube is now teasing Android users with 4K 60fps K-pop videos

Posted: 27 Mar 2015 06:47 PM PDT

YouTube 4K 60fps 2

Technology moves fast and the folks at YouTube are doing their best to stay ahead of the curve. In recent months, we've seen Google take new steps to fortify YouTube with a handful of new features and enhancements to keep bleeding edge viewers happy.

By now you've heard virtual reality is gearing up to become the next big thing in tech. Although actual VR content is scarce, YouTube recently launch 360-degree 3D videos viewable through the Android app and Chrome web browser. And while most of us are still watching movies/TV shows on our 1080p televisions, love it or hate, we're now seeing smartphones move to higher-resolution 2K displays. With that, Google added a 1440p option in the YouTube for Android app.

Today, YouTube is now going 1-step above normal 4K steaming, where they're now experimenting with 4K resolution video running at a blistering 60 frames per second. It's enough to bring anyone desktop PC to its knees, with our 3 month old MacBook Pro stuttering and freezing like it was on dial up.

Unfortunately for Android users — as with the rest of YouTube's 60fps content — this is desktop only for now. Not that we would even stream at 4K/60 on our smartphone (the Snapdragon 810 caps at 1080p/120) but 2K would be nice. We're not sure how much longer this will be the case, but can Android users get a little 60fps love, Google?

Check down below for a few more YouTube videos running at 2160p/60fps (or check out the 6 video playlist here ). That Star Citizen video is really impressive.

My pants after watching K-pop in 4K/60fps

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Chrome scrolling is about to get much smoother thanks to a new API

Posted: 27 Mar 2015 06:22 PM PDT

It looks like scrolling is about to get a tad smoother in Chrome. Google said it will soon integrate Microsoft's Pointer Events API into the browser.

While there's no timeline for when the API will be implemented, the end result should be less jank when scrolling through a website in Chrome.

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Plex version 4.0 update brings a revamped UI, increased access to Android TV and more

Posted: 27 Mar 2015 05:28 PM PDT

Deal: Pick up Limbo for only $.99 in the Google Play Store (normally $4.99)

Posted: 27 Mar 2015 04:12 PM PDT

Your top Galaxy S6 questions from the forums answered!

Posted: 27 Mar 2015 03:37 PM PDT

We have a Galaxy S6 and S6 edge in the house, and that means we spent the last two days in the forums answering all of your burning questions on the phones.

As we expected, questions flooded in by the dozens, and before we knew it there were nine pages of questions and answers in a single Android Central Forums thread. That's pretty awesome, as it both answers your questions specifically and also gives us a feel for what you all want to know about these phones going forward. While there's a big wealth of information in that forum thread now, we wouldn't blame you if you didn't have time to read through every page.

That's why we're going to break out some of the most common questions members asked yesterday, and answer them completely right here and now. Read along and see your top Galaxy S6 questions from the forums answered.

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Google fires back over recent reporting on leaked FTC documents

Posted: 27 Mar 2015 03:37 PM PDT

Google has fired back at The Wall Street Journal today over what it says are inaccuracies in its recent reporting on a leaked FTC document.

At issue is a Wall Street Journal report from last week based on an inadvertently released FTC document that detailed the agency's conclusions in a 2013 antitrust case against Google. In its response, Google's SVP of Communications and Policy, Rachel Whetstone, argues that the report contained several inaccuracies concerning both the FTC's final decision and Google's efforts to influence legislation in Washington.

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