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Computex Taipei 2013 - ROCCAT have unveiled something they're calling a first in the history of PC gaming with their new Power-Grid technology. Power-Grid allows you to use your smartphone to control both your games, and your computer, and is free to get you started.
ROCCAT's Power-Grid will allow you to connect, monitor and control your game and PC in real-time, with the app featuring four control displays, or "grids". There are four grids at play, with the first three preloaded with a bunch of essential gaming tools while ROCCAT have left the fourth one completely customizable. The three grids are made up of the "Incoming Center", "Stats Control", "Sound Control" while the fourth is free.
Incoming Center routes all outside voice and text communication - be it Skype, Facebook or TeamSpeak - to your smartphone for easy viewing. This way, gamers can continue to get their game on, without their PC disturbing them with updates, which they can quickly check on their smartphone.
Stats Control allows gamers to view their PC's vital data - such as CPU load, hard drive space and network traffic - all from their smartphone. The third preloaded grid is Sound Control, which lets gamers set and adjust all aspects of their gaming audio from their smartphone. Gamers can tweak audio settings in Skype to provide in-game music or with their media player together, or independently.
During Google I/O this year, Google launched a new music streaming service to go head-to-head with Spotify, Pandora, and others. Unfortunately for iPhone users like myself, the streaming service isn't accessible on iOS...at least not yet. A Google executive has come out at the D11 conference and said that it will "soon" be available for iOS users.
Google's Sundar Pichai has stated that All Access is due for iOS in a "couple weeks," which is a bit vague. A Google spokesperson was even more vague, offering just that "Google Play All Access is coming to iOS this summer." Pichai added, "[T]he teams are working like crazy to do it."
This is good news for iOS users as you have to sign up before June 30 to get the reduced $8 per month introductory rate. After that, All Access will set you back $10. All Access is currently only available in the United States, though you can expect Google to work to expand that.
We first saw Spotify's Discover service back in December and now the music streaming giant has began rolling out the music discovery page to its users. The new page allows users to "Discover and Sample" new music, something that was previously hard to do.
"With the Discover page, we're making good on our promise of helping you choose what to listen to when faced with millions of songs," Spotify Chief Product Officer Gustav Söderström said in a statement. "We've made your listening experience more personal, more social, and more current."
The new Discover Page will include the following features:
- New personalised recommendations every day based on the music you love
- New releases from the artists you follow
- All the music and playlists shared by friends and trendsetters you follow
- Find out when an artist you love is touring near you - the information will just bubble up through recommended shows from Songkick
- Related Music: play a song and get instant recommendations on what to play next
As of this writing the "Discover" page is available to all Spotify users on the web-based app, and the company says that it will "gradually" roll out the new feature to desktop and mobile apps in the coming weeks.
A Plex refresh for Android has been in the works for sometime now. The popular media streaming application gets an entirely new look for Android while the 3.2 version for iOS gets some bug fixes.
The refresh provides a much more polished and elegant interface while improving access times to larger libraries. The initial 3.0 release had a bug forced the app to require a MyPlex account as well not allowing the remote control widget to function properly. iOS users have had Plex 3.0 for some time now and the 3.2 update brings forth some tangeable improvements including speedier media access, fixes for Plex Sync. Other improvements include letting the iOS app serve as a remote playback target for other Plex equipped devices.
As a user of Plex for some time now, this update is a most welcome one. I love Plex's ease of setup and use and the ability to not only stream content hosted on local servers, but the ability to watch web based content from hundreds of free sources such as Revision3. I will be covering how to set up Plex in an upcoming how to article in which we will build a small form factor home media server, so stay tuned to TweekTown for that.
Sky have had their mobile apps reportedly hacked by the Syrian Electronic Army, with Sky now advising all users to remove their apps from devices. Sky TV have said that their Android applications have been hacked, and have now been removed from the Google Play Store.
You can see from the above image that the description for the Sky Go app says "Syrian Electronic Army Was Here". Twitter has been a source of information as usual, with the Sky Help Team stating: "UPDATE: All Sky's Android apps were hacked and replaced... please uninstall it, And we will let you know when it will be available".
So if you're running a Sky TV app, you might want to remove it from your device completely and only reinstall once Sky have given the all-clear.
Microsoft and Google kiss and make up, said to be working on YouTube app for Windows Phone that serves ads, coming in 'the coming weeks'
Good news for Windows Phone users! Microsoft and Google have apparently kissed and made up and are now working jointly on a YouTube app that follows the YouTube API guidelines. The new app will serve ads using YouTube's iFrame API and is due out as soon as next month.
Microsoft and YouTube are working together to update the new YouTube for Windows Phone app to enable compliance with YouTube's API terms of service, including enabling ads, in the coming weeks. Microsoft will replace the existing YouTube app in Windows Phone Store with the previous version during this time.
Windows Phone users should ultimately be the winners from this agreement as they will gain a polished YouTube app. It's not clear exactly what brought the two companies together or what Microsoft had to provide to Google to get them to play ball. Microsoft needs a YouTube app to make Windows Phone a viable mobile platform.
We'll let you know when the newly polished YouTube app is released for Windows Phone.
We promise you, Instagram did not randomly delete your account last night. Instead, the popular photo sharing app suffered a glitch that prevented some users from logging in. Users, however, jumped to conclusions and the hashtag #Dontdeletemyaccount made its rounds, ultimately being used on over 500,000 photos.
Today, Instagram has issued an apology and explanation: "Yesterday we experienced technical issues that caused people to be unable to access their accounts for a short period of time. We restored access as soon as the issue was brought to our attention, and we're sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused you."
Rumors swirled that Instagram was deleting accounts to clear server space or punish users who violated the company's Terms of Service. It's highly unlikely, for future reference, that Instagram or any web company would randomly delete user accounts. Next time, wait a few days as it's most likely a glitch.
Google have updated the Chrome beta for Android, which has reached version 28 (28.0.1500.21) and includes a bunch of requested features as well as a new code base. Chrome users on tablets will now enjoy the same full screen experience that was included in version 27 for smartphones.
This means that the toolbar and omnibox disappear as you scroll down the page, which is very useful to use more of the screen. Automatic translation of pages not in the device's native language is now available, which desktop users have enjoyed for a while now. Here are the full details of the new version:
- Google Translate: When you come across a page written in a language that isn't in the same language as your phone or tablet, look for the translation bar
- Fullscreen on tablets: Simply scroll the page to dismiss the toolbar
- Support for fullscreen API
- New graph showing your estimated bandwidth savings when you use the experimental data compression feature
- Mobile friendly error pages
Today Amazon.com announced that its Appstore is now available in nearly 200 countries worldwide, and features apps for Macs, PC's and Android based devices such as Amazon's Kindle Fire. Alongside this announcement, Amazon said that the Kindle Fire will release to over 170 new countries in June.
"We are thrilled to be expanding the reach of our global app distribution to nearly 200 countries. We think our customers will love the app selection we have to offer and also find features such as Free App of the Day and personalized recommendations very helpful as they discover and explore new apps and games," said Mike George, Vice President of Apps and Games at Amazon. "By further expanding the distribution of apps to millions of customers around the world, we are continuing to make it easy for customers to enjoy their Amazon apps on Kindle Fire and any Android device."
To celebrate this expansion, the Amazon Appstore is bringing back one of its most popular Free Apps of the Day, "Fruit Ninja," along with "Cut the Rope: Experiments." These will be available, for free, on May 23 and May 24. For those not in the know, the "Free App of the Day," is a program in which Amazon offers a paid app for free every day.
Pandora and Facebook have had a very friendly relationship for years now and now both companies are taking it to a new level with a purpose built app for Facebook's Timeline. The new app will let users share what they are listening to on their timeline, similar to how Spotify handles things.
The new functionality is being integrated into Pandora's iOS and Android apps as well as Pandora.com and will let users automatically publish their listening habits to their Facebook Timeline. Pandora users will be able to specify which stations they share on the social network, as well as which artists and tracks they would like to appear on the wall.
In a statement, Pandora's Tim Conrad, had the following to say:
"While we've offered social features that allow you to explicitly share your Pandora stations and music discoveries to Facebook for some time, today's update makes sharing effortless. This means it's easier than ever to discover new music from friends' listening activity in your Facebook News Feed or by checking out the music section on their profile."