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TweakTown News Posts - Page 85

Apple drops $30 million to buy talk radio app Swell

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jul 28, 2014 12:04 pm

Fans of talk radio may be familiar with the app called Swell. It's rather like Pandora, but specifically for talk radio and the company behind the app had raised $7.2 million from investors. Word has surfaced from multiple sources that Apple has now purchased Swell for about $30 million.

 

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Apple has been on a buying spree of late with the massive $3 billion purchase of Beats and another purchase of a book recommendation service called BookLamp. Swell is an app designed to make it easy to listen to talk radio and podcasts in your car.

 

With Apple purchasing Swell, the app will be shut down this week. That is definitely not good news for fans of the app, but Apple is likely to integrate the tech into one of its existing apps. Odds are Swell tech will be used to replace Apple's own Podcast app. A large portion of the Swell team will be joining Apple.

Bose files a patent infringement lawsuit against Beats

By: Roshan Ashraf Shaikh | More News: Audio, Sound & Speakers | Posted: Jul 28, 2014 11:42 am

Sound system and headphone manufacturer Bose has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Beats Electronics relating to noise-cancellation technology. According to Bose, Beats infringed upon five of its patents on purpose, and made a claim that the company is now incurring losses in sales as a result.

 

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Bose also filed a complaint with the International Trade Commission in the hopes that they can stop Beats from selling their headphones in the United States. According to the company, Beats which was acquired by Apple for $3 billion, is using the infringed technology patent in its Studio and Studio Wireless lineups. Bose mentioned that its active noise reduction technology was originally designed for the military during the 1980s and later was designed for consumers in 2000.

 

Beats didn't comment on the issue, but Bose's representatives said that they are committed to protecting its investment, customers and also to defend its patent. The lawsuit is filed in US District Court of Delaware.

Windows Phone update to bring support for smart cases and big screens

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jul 28, 2014 11:20 am

Windows Phone users have a new update that is in the works that will be landing in the coming months. The update is currently known as Windows Phone 8.1 GDR1 and it brings with it some nice features. We already know that this update will bring folder support.

 

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In addition to that feature, the update will also add in support for smart cases along the lines of the HTC Dot View case and the LG QuickCircle case. The update will allow the makers of phones running the OS to specify what app runs when the case is closed and what happens when the case is opened.

 

Another feature that will come with the next update is support for larger screens. Screens as large as 7-inches with resolution of 1280 x 768 and support for 1280 x 800 for devices that have software navigation buttons will land in the update. Other things included in the update are improvements for voice over LTE, better Bluetooth music, and more. Exactly when the update will land is unknown at this time.

Google photographs Liberty and Ellis Islands for Google Maps

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jul 28, 2014 10:27 am

Google has been mapping tourist locations around the world for years now and puts the images it generates into virtual tours you can take via Google Maps. Reports have come in that indicate Google is now getting ready to make tours of Ellis Island and Liberty Island available for virtual tours.

 

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Google has reportedly been collecting images of both islands in preparation to add the content to its online maps service. The images were taken by a Google backpack wearing man named Alberto Elias according to the NYT. The reason it's taken so long to get access to Liberty and Ellis islands is that the National Park Service operates them and a long process has to be worked through to gain access to the islands.

 

The Trekker backpack has 15 cameras along with GPS and a laser system on top that is used to measure the distance to objects. Liberty Island is a heavily visited landmark and the faces of those in the images will be blurred out before they are put online.

Smartphone battery life could double with next-gen lithium cells

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jul 28, 2014 4:29 am

Battery life in our smartphones and tablets is something that needs drastic improvement, but it looks like we see the light at the end of the tunnel with some new technology thanks to researchers out of Stanford.

 

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These researchers have developed a new lithium battery that could double smartphone and tablet battery life, something that enables denser, more efficient lithium within the battery's anode. This is done by using a nanoscopic carbon shield that keeps the unstable chemical stable, but when uncontrolled, drains the battery life much faster.

 

The result of this is that we have a battery that lasts much longer, but will not degrade as quickly, and on top of that - it will be much safer. Stanford's Steven Chu, who was previously the US Secretary of Energy, says that smartphones powered by these advanced lithium cells could have two to three times the battery life that smarpthones do now. He also said that automakers could build cheap electric cars, that still have a decent range on them.

Take cash out of an ATM, and play Doom at the same time

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jul 28, 2014 3:39 am

I can finally say I've seen everything, even with all of the crazy stuff that comes out of Japan. Someone has got Doom running on an ATM - yes the same Automatic Teller Machine that dispenses you cash.

 

 

Contrlling it was an entire new game, something that looks quite hard to do. Doom on an ATM required an Australian guy, using an OEM PC and display, with an i-Pac controller for mapping the side buttons. Even the PIN was used for controlling the game, something that would be incredibly hard to get used to. We've all see the PC master race, but what about an ATM master race?

Continue reading 'Take cash out of an ATM, and play Doom at the same time' (full post)

More leaked shots of the Sony Xperia Z3 find their way online

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jul 28, 2014 3:00 am

Sony has been doing good things with its Xperia smartphones, but it isn't competing with the numbers that Samsung, Apple and now even LG are pumping out. Its latest venture, the Xperia Z3, hasn't been officially announced, but this hasn't stopped the teases of the smartphone coming out.

 

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@evleaks is at it yet again with some images that he is saying is the purported Xperia Z3, something that looks similar to the Z2. The Z3 drops the silver trim, and is slightly thinner than the already thin Z2. We can see that the button placement remains the same, with the power button and dedicated camera shutter on the right hand side of the phone.

 

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The latest rumors have the Xperia Z3 packing some serious heat: a 5.15-inch 1080p display, 2.4GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor, Adreno 330 GPU, 3GB of RAM, 16GB of internal flash storage, the impressive 20.7-megapixel rear-facing camera backed up by a 2.1-megapixel selfie shooter. All of this swims around with Android 4.4.4 KitKat, and Sony's usual sprinkle of UI on top.

Mad Max: Fury Road releases first trailer at ComicCon

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Celebrities & Entertainment | Posted: Jul 28, 2014 1:45 am

'Mad Max: Fury Road', fast shaping up as one of the most eagerly awaited releases of 2015 has finally revealed its first trailer on the final day of San Diego Comic Con. Featuring plenty of action, explosions and Tom Hardy, the 2 minute extravaganza proves that the 'Happy Feet' films haven't softened Director George Miller too much.

 

 

The long gestating project, which wrapped principal photography back in December 2012 serves as both a sequel and a reboot to the original 'Mad Max' series, which launched the career of Mel Gibson back in 1979.

 

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'Mad Max: Fury Road' stars Tom Hardy as Max Rockatansky along with Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley is scheduled for release in May 2015.

Crytek says that it is going through a 'transitional phase'

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jul 28, 2014 1:32 am

Crytek has been going some tough times lately, not paying its employees on time, key talent leaving, and more, but the German studio behind CryEngine and Crysis has finally made a formal statement to GamesIndustry.

 

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The company said that it "has been in a transitional phase" as it changes from being a developer to an online publisher, something that requires considerable sums of money. Crytek said that it has secured the money required, and is better prepared for the long term, but added that "we won't be communicating further details about our developments and progress".

Continue reading 'Crytek says that it is going through a 'transitional phase'' (full post)

Google rumored to be working with Motorola on next-gen Nexus handset

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jul 28, 2014 12:50 am

We don't really know what is going on with the new Nexus, with LG saying that it will not be making the new Nexus, and with all of the news of the Android Silver program, we truly don't know what to expect. That was however, until the latest rumor popped up that Motorola - which Google sold to Lenovo - would be constructing the new Nexus for the search giant.

 

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Android Police has the hot rumor in its hands, giving it a "confidence level" of 6.5 out of 10. The rumor is that Motorola is working on a new smartphone with Google that goes by the codename of Shamu. Shamu will reportedly be aimed at major US carriers, as well as other large carriers throughout the world, carriers that most likely already handle the Nexus 5.

 

Shamu will reportedly feature a large 5.9-inch screen with an unknown resolution, and something that makes this rumor stand out: a fingerprint sensor. We are meant to be expecting this new smartphone in November, which should be an interesting time for a smartphone release. We'll have more information on the new Nexus as it materializes.

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