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Google's new family plan for Google Play Music for $14.99 per month

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Apps | Posted: Sep 30, 2015 9:36 am

In its continued fight against Apple and Spotify, Google has just announced its new family plan for Play Music. Google's family plan for Play Music costs $14.99 per month and allows for six different profiles so that each member of the family can have music recommendations based on their individual tastes.




Apple's Music family plan is also priced at $14.99, and also allows for six people in the family to join in on the fun. But Spotify on the other hand, provides just two accounts for $14.99 per month while $35 gives you access to six accounts. Google Play Music has opened up for business in 58 countries on both Android and iOS.


You can stream music from Google Play Music from your smartphone, tablet or PC to your Chromecast - even the new Chromecast Audio - and to your Android TV, and more.

Samsung's Milk Video service has bombed, will shut down in November

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Apps | Posted: Sep 29, 2015 11:35 am

Samsung's huge advertising push for its video service 'Milk Video' has done nothing for the South Korean giant, with the company announcing that Milk Video will disappear next month. The music service, Milk Music, will continue to live another day, though.




The company posted an updated Play Store app description, which was a pretty crummy way of letting the world know. Samsung said: "Thank you for using Samsung Milk Video. While we remain committed to providing premium entertainment services, we have decided to end support for the Samsung Milk Video app as of November 20, 2015. To continue enjoying streaming entertainment, please use the Samsung Milk Music app available at:".

Instagram surpasses 400 million users

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Apps | Posted: Sep 24, 2015 1:37 am

Instagram hit their 300 million user milestone late last year, but they've added a huge 100 million users in the last 9 months to reach 400 million users in total now.




The photo-focused social network is an interesting beast, especially under the wing of Facebook. Instagram has noted that 75% of these active users are coming from outside of the United States, but can it continue this huge growth? Facebook acquired Instagram back in 2012 for $1 billion, but that deal feels like nothing when you consider the social network slapped down $19 billion to acquire WhatsApp in 2013.

Taxi lawsuit dismissed, told to compete technological advances, Uber

By: Chris Smith | More News: Apps | Posted: Sep 12, 2015 4:25 pm

With Yellow Cabs being combatant against the rise of Uber and other similar applications, a lawsuit was launched to have this method of transportation banned from use. However, Queens Supreme Court Justice Allan Weiss recently ruled that for-hire vehicles requested through an electronic medium may continue operate alongside Yellow Cabs - effectively ensuring Uber is safe to live another day.




Addressing the case at hand, the judge wrote that "any expectation that the medallion would function as a shield against the rapid technological advances of the modern world would not have been reasonable," adding "in this day and age, even with public utilities, investors must always be wary of new forms of competition arising from technological development."


The lawsuit was filed by four Queens credit unions who each have stakes in Taxi medallions. Their lawyer, Todd Higgins, told media that this ruling is "a stunning abdication of leadership and responsibility that will haunt New York City for years to come," adding "a catastrophe is unfolding, as an entire industry continues to be illegally destroyed, while elected officials allow it to happen on their watch."

Continue reading 'Taxi lawsuit dismissed, told to compete technological advances, Uber' (full post)

Microsoft doubles its ownership of Android lock-screen apps

By: Chris Smith | More News: Apps | Posted: Sep 12, 2015 9:32 am

The recent investment of buying Double Labs, the creators of Echo Notification Lockscreen, has seen Microsoft gain ownership of two Android lock-screen apps. These apps allow users to alter lock-screen notifications and various other features, with this new purchase adding to Microsoft Garage's already-produced Next Lock Screen app, released in 2014.




Echo sets out to set up a new push notification system for users, enabling categorization of notifications and further controlling which ones will perform certain measures, like turning on the phone screen, or providing further notifications at a later time or different location. A possible application for Eco would involve disabling personal Facebook Messenger notifications so they don't annoy you whilst at work or turning off work email push notifications during at-home hours.


Microsoft's plan for acquiring Echo is reportedly due to CEO Satya Nadella's push towards making personalized computing experiences, wanting to further allow software to be modified to the tastes of each user.

Android app holds you ransom for $500, after snapping a photo of you

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Apps | Posted: Sep 9, 2015 2:32 am

There's an Android app going around that is holding people ransom, but not before it snaps a picture of the user. Adult Player is a porn app that secretly takes a picture of the user through their front-facing camera, after which it locked the users device and demands $500 to unlock it again.




Adult Player has not been approved by Google Play, and can only be downloaded from a website. US security firm Zscaler says that Adult Player's ransom message sits on the smartphone's screen at all times, reappearing if the smartphone is rebooted. Zscaler said: "This ransomware acts as a porn app named 'Adult Player' and lures victims who assume it is a pornographic video player". Zscaler added: "When the victim starts using it, the app silently takes a photo of the victim, which is then displayed on the ransomware screen, along with the ransom message. The app demands a ransom of 500 USD".


Zscaler says this is the second porn-focused ransomware they've discovered and is particularly nasty as it pops up once a smartphone has been rebooted. It completely locks the user out of the own smartphone, forcing users to pay the $500 to remove the block from their smartphone. Adult Player can be removed, but Zscaler says that it is quite difficult to do so. The security firm added: "The ransomware is designed to stay stagnant on screen and does not allow the the victim to uninstall it. Rebooting the device does not work in such cases as ransomware app becomes active immediately after reboot, which leaves no scope for the victim to get into device "settings" and uninstall the ransomware".


If you, or anyone you know has installed Adult Player and need to get it off, Zscaler provides full instructions on how to remove it here.

WhatsApp is now home to 900 million users

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Apps | Posted: Sep 5, 2015 7:14 am

WhatsApp is continuing to grow, with the Facebook-owned messaging giant now having a huge 900 million active monthly users. This is up 100 million from five months ago, where WhatsApp sat at 800 million active monthly users.




The company said back in January that it had 700 million users, adding 100 million users to its system just three months later. At this rate, the Facebook-owned company should hit 1 billion users before the New Year. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg congratulated WhatsApp CEO Jan Koum, where she said: "900 million people now use WhatsApp every month to stay in touch with family and friends around the world. Congratulations to Jan Koum and everyone at WhatsApp on reaching this incredible milestone and for still finding time to make us all laugh".

Re-live the old days with PAC-MAN 256 on your mobile

By: Chris Smith | More News: Apps | Posted: Aug 21, 2015 12:28 pm

Developed by Hipster Whale and BANDAI NAMCO Studios Vancouver, PAC-MAN 256 is now out on Android and Apple iOS devices in a bid to celebrate the 35th anniversary of this legendary title.




With bonuses added including a 'glitch' and power-ups that enable stealth, tornado's, laser beams and more - this rendition also includes the classic colorful ghosts and collectible fruits we all know and love.


Continuing on the PAC-MAN legacy is something that Matt Hall from Hipster Whale is most excited about, saying a recent press release that "Now the day is here people can play our tribute to the PAC-MAN legacy."

Continue reading 'Re-live the old days with PAC-MAN 256 on your mobile' (full post)

MilestonePod app is updated to include even more metrics for runners

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Apps | Posted: Aug 13, 2015 9:15 pm

The MilestonePod from Milestone Sports has recently been upgraded, providing users with a detailed in-depth look at health and performance. Users can now track workouts and see metrics that include mileage on a wearer's shoes, calories burned, pace, distance, cadence and stride length.




The MilestonePod is available for $24.95, and doesn't require owners to carry anything else with the device. Once placed on a shoe, it collects data that can be wirelessly connected to a Bluetooth-enabled device to access workout data.


"For the first time, runners and walkers can receive detailed feedback and information about their personal running style that can help them make changes to not only meet their goals but to also mitigate preventable injury and pain," said Jason Kaplan, CEO of Milestone Sports.

Continue reading 'MilestonePod app is updated to include even more metrics for runners' (full post)

McDonald's is now rolling out its mobile app across the country

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Apps | Posted: Aug 12, 2015 10:15 pm

McDonald's is now rolling out a mobile app to some customers in the United States, which features a loyalty program for the restaurant's drinks, special deals, and more. A customer can earn a free drink after five McCafe drink purchases, if they use the app.




The company will rollout the app nationwide by October, if everything goes according to plan with limited testing, according to McDonald's. Ideally, the mobile app could pave the way for increased use of different ordering and payment opportunities while inside McDonald's restaurants.


McDonald's CEO Steve Easterbrook admitted the company is "a little behind some others" when it comes to mobile app rollouts.

Continue reading 'McDonald's is now rolling out its mobile app across the country' (full post)

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