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Netflix for Android gets updated, now faster with smoother navigation

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Apps | Posted: Oct 17, 2013 2:09 am

Today Netflix rolled out version 3.0 of its app for Android. This update features a completely redesigned user interface that is refined, faster and easier to navigate. Overall, the layout is very similar to what we are use to seeing, but the entire skin is sharper, and more crisp.

 

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Netflix redesigned the backend of the app from the ground up and as a result, things are more responsive. When you touch the screen, your touch is instantly recognized, and the screen scrolls like you would expect. Netflix has also improved compatibility with Chromecast and the service feels much more snappy now when casting to your Chromecast. Netflix is slowly rolling the new app out over the next few days so if you have not gotten the update yet, be patient and it will arrive soon.

ReportTT: Apple cuts orders for new iPhone 5C units by 20-percent

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Oct 17, 2013 1:09 am

A new Report from Reuters is cluing us in on how well Apple's iPhone 5C is doing. According to the article, demands for the iPhone 5C has not been as high as Apple had expected. It appears that Apple fans like the 5S much more than they do the 5C, which has led to Apple cutting production by 20-percent on the plastic bodied 5C.

 

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While Apple may not have expected this, many industry analyst saw it coming the moment Apple released the pricing on the device. Investors and consumers widely expected the 5C to retail in the $199 range off contract, with a contract version in the $50-99 range for a 32GB model. This aggressive pricing was needed in order to take hold in the emerging markets, but apple failed to see that, and the result appears to be a plastic phone that may very well be a total flop.

Square launches Square Cash, a service to send money via email

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Apps | Posted: Oct 17, 2013 12:11 am

Today Square officially launched its cash by email service known as Square Cash. The new payment system functions much like Google's Wallet service in that you can transfer money to friends, sellers, or even strangers simply by sending an email. Square has been beta testing this with a few users now for several months and it has been met with rave reviews.

 

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The service works by composing an email to the person you want to send money to. The sender must CC cash@square.com and only place the amount of money they wish to send in the body. If the sender has a credit card on file with square and the email address matches up, then the transfer will go through. The recipient must also have a debit card or bank account on file for the transaction to complete. The company has also released native apps for Android, and iOS that facilitate the process on mobile as well.

Oregon Scientific debuts new MEEP! X2, and Android tablet for kids

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Oct 16, 2013 11:09 pm

With tablets growing in popularity, it only makes sense that we begin to see more feature rich versions for children begin popping up. Today Oregon Scientific launched a completely redesigned version of its MEEP! Android-based tablet for kids. The MEEP! X2 is a Wi-Fi enabled tablet that is both liquid resistant and shockproof.

 

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Oregon Scientific says that the MEEP! X2 features front and rear cameras, bluetooth connectivity, and runs an dual-core ARM Cortex 1.2GHz processor. 1GB of RAM is present and a microSD slot is included for added storage. The tablet runs Android 4.2 and has been designed with the ruggedness in mind that is needed to survive multiple trips to the playground and being tossed around in both the car and playroom.

 

Oregon Scientific has built in parental controls into the operating system as well as online which allows parents to have complete control over what content their kids see and what they can access. Going the extra mile, the company has also built its own app store which features over 800 kid-friendly apps that can be downloaded to the MEEP! X2. The device is available at Toys-R-Us stores now and retails for $149.99.

BenQ launches a new 27-inch full HD monitor

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Displays & Projectors | Posted: Oct 16, 2013 10:09 pm

Lovers of large monitors will be happy to hear that today, BenQ unveiled a new 27-inch monitor that features full HD resolution and a decent contrast ratio. The all new EW2740L is the latest addition to the EW40 series of monitors offered by the company and features a native resolution of 1920x1080-pixels.

 

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BeenQ says that the monitor uses a VA Panel display that allows for flawless streaming that provides for flawless streaming from any MHL-compatible device. The display also has a flicker-free backlighting system that provides relief from eye strain. The monitor features a contrast ratio of 3000:1 and a 4ms GTG response time. Input connections include D-Sub, and dual HDMI with the display being backed by a three-year warranty. The new EW2740L retails for about $400 and is available now.

Battlefield 4 will have a 12GB footprint on Xbox 360

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Gaming | Posted: Oct 16, 2013 9:10 pm

Xbox 360 users with slow internet connections may want to schedule their first Battlefield 4 round a bit later than they had previously thought. Today EA released a blog post that suggested that players will need to download an extra 12GB of content to their hard drive in order to get the best gameplay experience possible.

 

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Those who do not care about quality, can simply stick to the 2GB install to play file, but EA says that for the optimum experience, users will need to install an additional 6.6GB file for multiplayer, and another 5.8GB file for singleplayer. This will ensure that customers have the highest resolution textures, maps, and file system updates. This will most likely apply to PS3 players too, but PC gamers, need not worry as you will install all the high-resolution files from the beginning anyway.

Apple receives approval to build its "spaceship" campus in Cupertino

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Current Affairs | Posted: Oct 16, 2013 8:14 pm

After over 2 years since Steve Jobs first pitched the new radically designed campus to the Cupertino City Council, Apple has finally been given the greenlight on its new home. Reports are coming out today that state that the City Council voted unanimously to approve the project.

 

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"Steve transformed Apple into one of the most innovative companies in the world and we understand the responsibilities that come from carrying his legacy forward with this project," said Dan Whisenhunt, Apple's head of real estate and facilities. "We've designed it with the same care and attention to detail as we do with all Apple products."

 

The new campus has often been referred to as a "spaceship" in the media, and once completed it will house more than 12,000 Apple employees. The campus is said to cost upwards of $5 billion and will be one of the "greenest" corporate headquarters on the planet. No mention was made on when construction would begin, or when it will be finished.

What is 3D NAND? Jim Handy launches new series to educate us

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Storage | Posted: Oct 16, 2013 7:05 pm

Many of you will remember when Samsung launched its V-NAND 3D NAND product back in August. Samsung has said that 3D NAND is the future of storage and it fundamentally changes the way NAND flash is manufactured. As with any cutting edge technology, wrapping our head around how this new NAND flash works is a little tough.

 

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Fortunately, our friend Jim Handy of Objective Analysis has taken it upon himself to educate the world on what 3D NAND is, why it is needed, and how it is made. Handy has started a new series on his personal blog, The Memory Guy, that will span over 9 weeks and will educate us on everything 3D NAND. Handy has posted an overview of the series and we highly encourage you to head over to his blog and check it out!

Samsung unveils high-efficiency Green Memory Solutions at MSF 2013

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Storage | Posted: Oct 16, 2013 5:30 pm

Early this morning, Samsung announced its fifth generation of green memory solutions that greatly reduce energy consumption and save customers money. The unveiling came at the company's Memory Solutions Forum that is being held today in Seoul Korea and were presented under the theme of a "New Memory Paradigm."

 

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"With the introduction of these innovative memory solutions that maximize IT investment efficiency, we have set the stage for sharply strengthening the value of advanced memory," Executive VP of Sales, Young-Hyun Jun, said in his keynote. "We will continue to benefit society with the introduction of green IT technology in cooperation with our global partners to lead the global IT industry in creating greater shared value for customers."

 

 

Samsung says that the new memory solutions are optimized for the next-generation of data centers which feature cloud computing that is based around big data. Samsung offered three new green solutions to the market including DDR4, PCIe SSDs and a combo of the two technologies. These solutions have been designed to achieve dramatic improvements in performance and energy savings over existing IT technology.

Continue reading 'Samsung unveils high-efficiency Green Memory Solutions at MSF 2013' (full post)

Intel delays Broadwell production to 2014, cites defect density issue

By: Charles Gantt | More News: CPU, APU & Chipsets | Posted: Oct 16, 2013 4:31 pm

During IDF back in September, Intel announced its new 14nm Broadwell processor and said that we should see it begin to ship to OEMs sometime around the end of 2013. Unfortunately, that will not be the case. During the company's quarterly earnings call, Intel said that Broadwell has been delayed until the first quarter of 2014.

 

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The delay is due to a recent issue with defect density in the silicon wafers that were being produced. Intel says that this issue has been fixed and yield levels are back up to an acceptable number. Some analyst speculated that the delay was actually due to an excess of Ivy Bridge inventory to which CEO Brian Krzanich replied "absolutely not." From the beginning, Broadwell has been expected to go retail in 2014, and a setback of three months is not that big of a deal.

Continue reading 'Intel delays Broadwell production to 2014, cites defect density issue' (full post)

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