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It looks like Google might have a trick up its mobile OS sleeve when it finally unveils Android 4.4 KitKat, which might just be enough to move you away from some of the biggest messaging clients available on Android.
Android Police has secured some screenshots of what it is alleging to be Android 4.4 KitKat, which show off some settings that will enable SMS and MMS within Hangouts. This might not turn out to be true, but we should expect Google to really start a fire in KitKat that will have everyone talking. Enabling SMS and MMS capabilities within Hangouts would definitely be a step in the right direction for Google.
Twitter announced this morning that it had updated its app for Windows Phone and includes a very cool new lock screen feature. Version 3.0 of Twitter for Windows Phone brings forth the largest set of feature update and additions since the app hit the Windows app store.
The most notable new feature is the ability to set Twitter as your lock screen agent. Known as Peek, this new feature lets users simply wave their hand over the device to wake it up and see the last tweet that was received. Additionally users can now select their favorite Twitter accounts to receive tweet updates from, as well as customizing the app with either a light or dark theme.
Other updates include the ability to pin keyword searches to the home screen, set language preferences, and set interesting tweets to appear on the lock screen. You can find out more information and download Twitter for Windows Phone at the sources listed below.
Google Play has been updated, giving it an injection of HBO content. This includes individual episodes of some of the hottest shows on TV right now, or you can purchase entire seasons of shows.
The HBO shows include nearly all of my favorite shows: Game of Thrones, True Blood, Boardwalk Empire, The Newsroom, Veep, Girls and The Wire. Prices range from $2.99 per episodes to $34.99 for an entire season of your favorite, or new soon to be new favorite show. Some episodes can be picked up for $1.99 a piece, or just $14.99 per season.
Google Play will continue to add more HBO content going into the future, but for now this is a great addition.
Over the past year or so, the buzz surrounding Beats Audio's music streaming service has risen and fallen several times. With the project seeming so volatile, many industry analyst speculated that it may never get off the ground, but today new life appears to have been injected into the service.
During a recent interview with The Next Web, Beats COO Luke Wood, said that the streaming service would launch "within the next few months." He went on to say that the service would be available on the web as well as Android, iOS and Windows 8, with support for the latter arriving later than the previous two.
It also appears that the service will be titled Beats Music, rather than the "Daisy" moniker we have heard tossed around so much over the last 18 months. Wood said that the company is focusing heavily on the playlist side of things, and that the service would differ greatly from traditional streaming services like Pandora and Spotify.
If you're one of those lucky people in the Twitter beta testing group, you would know that there was an update tonight which has a new user interface. Twitter has changed the basic interface of its app, making it more simple to use.
The left edge slide-in drawer is gone, and the scrolling tabs at the top of the page have been replaced by a simple three tab design: Home, Discover and Activity. Notifications and messages have been moved, which now feature their own distinct buttons in the top action bar, with number badges indicating unread counts.
If you want to compose a new tweet, that's now at the bottom of the app, where you'll also be greeted with new buttons to add a picture, launch into the camera, or directly into the tweet and start typing.
It looks like Instagram is finally unleashing its ads to its application, with the Facebook-owned company announcing it will start pushing ads onto users' Instagram feeds.
Instagram will do this to grow its revenues, and it says it will make sure that "any advertisements you see feel as natural to Instagram as the photos and videos many of you already enjoy from your favorite brands." Instagram also said that the ads that will be "be enjoyable and creative in much the same way you see engaging, high-quality ads when you flip through your favorite magazine."
Google is looking to take on Apple and its new iTunes Music service later this month when it launches its Google Play Music service on iOS. With mixed reviews coming in about iTunes Music, this new offering on iOS from Google could do quite well.
Google is said to be testing the service on iOS internally at the moment, and should have all the bugs worked out and ready to launch by the end of October. Personally, after having tried out Google Play Music, and being a Spotify subscriber for over a year now, I feel that neither service live up to the quality and quantity of music Spotify is serving up.
Google seems to constantly be updating its various services, with the Mountain View-based giant updating its hotword for voice search to "Ok Google," similar to its "Ok Glass" for its wearable Glass device.
The "more beautiful" search results are hitting users now, where users can add "notable people" to the list of items that Google Now keeps you updated on. You'll see a button on their card when you search for them, like the image above.
The series finale of Breaking Bad was a huge success for AMC, as was the entire series, and today the franchise just added another notch to its bed post. Spotify has announced that "Baby Blue" by Badfinger, the song that played during the finale has seen its popularity grow by more than 9000-percent.
The song sold just over 5,000 downloads on Monday night alone which is said to account for a 300-percent boost in sales. Baby Blue was recorded in 1971 and was launched on Apple Records, a record label owned by the Beatles. Until now it fluctuated in popularity with peaks coming a few times a decade, but nothing close to the levels it has seen after being featured on Breaking Bad.
Since the release of iOS 7, many users have been reporting issues with iMessage not receiving or sending messages. Some users are even reporting that their messages are being marked as sent, only to have them pop up as failed several hours after sending.
There have been a few workarounds, with the most popular simply being to restarting the device. Other fixes include resetting the network settings, or even resetting the phone all together. None of these settings seem to fix the issue for more than a few minutes which indicated that the issues are on Apple's end. Luckily, the company says that it is working to fix the issue.
"We are aware of an issue that affects a fraction of a percent of our iMessage users, and we will have a fix available in an upcoming software update," Apple said in a statement.