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Monday, October 10, 2016

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Google confirms Pixel IP53 rating, don’t get it too close to water

Posted: 10 Oct 2016 03:04 PM PDT

Many companies making their devices weatherproof these days, like Apple making the iPhone IP67-rated and Samsung making the new Galaxies are IP68-rated, it's almost a feature consumers expect these days. It's great not having to worry that a small dunk in water won't ruin your expensive smartphone.

Unfortunately, Google has confirmed that the Pixel devices are only IP53-rated. This rating is for ingress protection: the first number defines dust protection and the second defines water protection. The first number being 5 means that dust cannot enter in sufficient quantities to affect usability. The second number being 3 means that the Pixel can survive a spray at 60 degrees for 5 minutes.

The IP53 rating basically means it won't take much water to cause damage to the Pixel, so if your Pixel takes a dunk, you'll probably have to say goodbye to it. We wouldn't be bringing a Pixel near water on a regular basis, and we sure wouldn't take it into the shower, either.

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Cyanogen announces Modular OS program, offering parts of Cyanogen OS to manufacturers

Posted: 10 Oct 2016 02:06 PM PDT

Cyanogen OS is a great operating system that allows tons of customization, but I don't think many people expected it to take off in the mainstream. Manufacturers using an aftermarket ROM that they have little control over just doesn't sound logical.

However, Cyanogen Inc. has announced the Modular OS program, which aims to boost adoption of Cyanogen OS features without requiring the entire Cyanogen OS stack to function. The dynamic modules and MODs will allow manufacturers to integrate parts of Cyanogen OS into their own ROMs and skins.

This is a good way to entice manufacturers to start using Cyanogen OS features. With a solid base of features developed over the years, it may be a good resource for some manufacturers that want to focus on hardware. The company claims that "increased demand for lower-priced smartphones, coupled with the specifications arms race, has left manufacturers focused on scale and efficiency while compromising investment in software and services."

This announcement also came with a leadership change. Lior Tal is now CEO, while Kirt McMaster will be an Executive Chairman of the Board and Steve Kondik will be the Chief Science Officer.

This could be the chance for a struggling company to succeed, though it's still hard to imagine manufacturers taking Cyanogen Inc. up on the offer. Nonetheless, we hope to see the company succeed. What do you think?

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Humble Mobile Bundle 21 is live with Goat Simulator, _PRISM, Door Kickers, and more

Posted: 10 Oct 2016 12:23 PM PDT


The latest mobile Humble Bundle is available, and that means now is your chance to get a bunch of great games for next to nothing. The bundle currently includes seven games, and as usual, more will be added in a week.

There are three tiers in the 21st Humble Mobile Bundle. If you pay $1 or more, you get Westport Independent, _PRISM, and Sage Solitaire. The next level unlocks if you pay above the average price at the time of purchase (currently $4.80).

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Humble Mobile Bundle 21 is live with Goat Simulator, _PRISM, Door Kickers, and more was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Sprint, Best Buy halting sales of replacement Galaxy Note 7

Posted: 10 Oct 2016 12:03 PM PDT

Over the weekend, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless all confirmed that they would be halting sales of the Galaxy Note 7 and that owners could replace their device with any other phone.

Now Sprint has officially confirmed that it is ceasing sales of replacement Galaxy Note 7 units as well, adding that customers who have a Note 7 can head into a retail store and return their device or exchange it for another phone altogether.

On top of that, Best Buy has also confirmed that it is stopping sales of the Galaxy Note 7 as well. Best Buy says that Note 7 owners can return or exchange their device for a different phone.

As a result of replacement phablets catching fire across the globe, Samsung has decided to temporarily halt production of the device, and carriers have stopped selling the phone. While Samsung is not opening up on what's still causing these issues, the best decision at this point for owners is to simply return the Note 7 and move to another phone.

The consensus here is straightforward: You should return your Galaxy Note 7 at this point, whether that's for a refund, or to get into a different phone.

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[Deal Alert] League of Stickman Zombie, djay2, and Lost Journey all down to $0.10 (some valid in US too)

Posted: 10 Oct 2016 09:32 AM PDT

dime_reverse_13There have been more $0.10 sales in the Play Store as of late, but most of them are not available in the US. Today there are three top apps and games on sale for this low, low price, and two of them are valid in the US. Available in most markets (including the US) are League of Stickman Zombie and Lost Journey. The non-US sale is for music app djay2.

We've seen the dreamy puzzler Lost Journey drop to $0.10 before and it was quite popular.

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[Deal Alert] League of Stickman Zombie, djay2, and Lost Journey all down to $0.10 (some valid in US too) was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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HTC Halfbeak smartwatch with Android Wear leaks in new images

Posted: 10 Oct 2016 09:04 AM PDT

HTC has been rumored to be putting together an Android Wear-based wearable since 2014, when the first renders of the device allegedly found their way online. The rumor mill then went quiet until September of last year when it was again rumored that HTC was planning on launching a smartwatch into the market.

Of course, HTC has been an Android Wear partner ever since the wearable platform was announced, so it's to be expected that the company had something in the works. Now, thanks to new images that surfaced over on the Chinese social network Weibo, we may have finally received a first look at what HTC had been working on.


The device in question is called the "Halfbeak," and we can see the front and the back of the device. HTC branding is present on the undercarriage, as is an Under Armour logo. The Halfbeak codename appears in the device's "About" screen as well, seemingly confirming this is indeed the long-gestating wearable.

That display is rumored to be 360×360, there are some physical buttons along one side of the wearable. Unfortunately, the source of this report says that this particular model has been shelved.

What do you think of this HTC Android Wear smartwatch?

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Samsung will pause Galaxy Note 7 production as carriers halt sales and exchanges

Posted: 10 Oct 2016 09:04 AM PDT

Last week, a Samsung Galaxy Note 7 caught fire while on board a Southwest flight and forced the crew and passengers to evacuate. Since then, other units around the globe have caught fire, including one in Minnesota where the owner was forced to go to the hospital.

Over the weekend, following scattered reports that replacement Galaxy Note 7 units were catching fire just like original models, carriers in the United States started responding. AT&T, Verizon Wireless, and T-Mobile have all confirmed that they are halting sales for the Galaxy Note 7 and that they will not be issuing replacement Note 7 units.

Now, Samsung has told the Wall Street Journal that it is "temporarily adjusting the Galaxy Note 7 production schedule in order to take further steps to ensure quality and safety matters." The company didn't elaborate any further, but as it stands, it sounds like they are halting production of the phablet for now.

As it stands, Samsung and the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) are trying to determine if the devices that recently caught fire are replacement Galaxy Note 7 units, despite independent reports apparently confirming they are. The CPSC also points out that a full refund is still a possibility following the first recall of the Galaxy Note 7.

It's worth repeating: If you have a Galaxy Note 7, whether it's an original model or a replacement unit, and you don't feel safe, return it.

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YouTube v11.39 auto-fills replies with the names of parent commenters [APK Download]

Posted: 10 Oct 2016 06:54 AM PDT


YouTube pushed out a small update over the weekend, bumping the version number up to 11.39. By all appearances, this is a pretty small one. Aside from the typical bug fixes and a few minor visual adjustments, there's one notable feature people have been requesting for a while. Replies to comments are now auto-filled with the name of the user you're replying to.

What's New

Unofficial Changelog:

  • Replies to comments are auto-filled with the parent commenter's name

Auto-filled replies

2016-10-10 10.49.102016-10-10 10.49.222016-10-10 10.49.26

The specific change is fairly straight-forward.

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YouTube v11.39 auto-fills replies with the names of parent commenters [APK Download] was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Top 5 most popular Android apps from last week: Trip Tracker, Ivy

Posted: 10 Oct 2016 05:08 AM PDT

Every week we cover new Android apps with Fresh Meat on Wednesday, followed by Android Gaming on Thursday and Top 10 App Updates on Friday. When Monday rolls around, we look back to see which apps were the most appealing to our audience. Read on for the five most popular Android apps from last week. These apps are ones that are most likely new and haven't appeared in the top five list more than three times.

1 . Photobooth


App info: Photobooth is a utility for joining multiple photos together into a single image for easy sharing online. You can import photos from the gallery or capture new pictures directly from the camera to create a custom photostrip in just seconds.


2. Trip Tracker

Trip Tracker

App info: Trip Tracker, a Microsoft Garage project, is a free app that automatically records your drives, runs, walks, and bike rides. The app works in the background, and will auto detect when your activity has started.


3. Ivy (Sidebar, Widgets, RSS)


App info: Ivy does what no other sidebar launcher does. Ivy provides more than just quick access to your next app. Ivy provides a comfortable place to spend time in between apps. Your home away from the homescreen.


4. Taskbar


App info: Taskbar puts a start menu and recent apps tray on top of your screen that's accessible at any time, increasing your productivity and turning your Android tablet (or phone) into a real multitasking machine!


5. Legend of the Skyfish

Legend of theSkyfish

App info:  Legend of the Skyfish is a beautiful action adventure puzzle game with a unique weapon and tool – a fishing pole! Follow the intrepid Little Red Hook on her journey with the Moonwhale to defeat the monstrous Skyfish.


Note:  To ensure that all apps receive a fair chance to make the list, we will retire any app that has made the list for three consecutive weeks.

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