android en HTC Launches Desire 510 Smartphone, Keeps Mum on 64-bit Capabilities <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/htc_desire_0.jpg" alt="HTC Desire 510" title="HTC Desire 510" width="228" height="219" style="float: right;" />HTC doesn't seem to care that its Desire 510 rocks a 64-bit chip</h3> <p><strong>You can add the Desire 510 to HTC's family of smartphones</strong>. HTC announced the LTE device, which sports a 4.7-inch display powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 processor. In case you're not familiar, the Snapdragon 410 features four Cortex A53 CPU cores clocked at 1.2GHz and an Adreno 306 GPU. It's a speedy chip, but perhaps what's most interesting is that it's a 64-bit capable part, though you wouldn't know it from reading through HTC's press materials.</p> <p>Though the Snapdragon 410 is both 32-bit and 64-bit capable, <a href="" target="_blank">HTC isn't making any noise</a> about the latter. It's probably of little benefit in the grand scheme of things (this is a budget phone, after all), which is likely the reason why HTC isn't celebrating the phone's 64-bit goodness, though it's also a bit odd since it's the first 64-bit Android smartphone.</p> <p>In any event, the HTC Desire 510 also features 1GB of RAM, 8GB of internal storage, microSD card slot, 4G LTE radio, 3MP front-facing camera, 5MP front-facing camera, 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, USB 2.0, 2100mAh battery, and Android 4.4 KitKat covered with Sense 6.</p> <p>The HTC Desire will begin shipping in September in the U.K. for £149 (around $245). It will ship to other parts of the world, including the U.S., sometime later.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> 64-bit android desire 510 Hardware htc smartphone News Thu, 28 Aug 2014 17:26:06 +0000 Paul Lilly 28438 at Android L May End Up Called Lemon Meringue Pie...Mmm, Pie <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/android_lmp.jpg" alt="Android LMP" title="Android LMP" width="228" height="151" style="float: right;" />Would you like a slice of Lemon Meringue Pie with your KitKat?</h3> <p>Fact: Bears eat beets. Bears. Beets. Battlestar Gallactica. Another fact -- every version of Android since v1.5 has been named after a sweet dessert, in alphabetical order (Cupcake, Doughnut, Eclair, and so forth). As it stands, the next version of Android is currently codenamed L, and we can think of a bunch of desserts that start with that letter. However, <strong>there's evidence to suggest that Google with run with Lemon Meringue Pie for Android L</strong>.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><em>Android Police found</em></a> multiple official sources in code and documentation that list the next release as "LMP," which strongly suggest Google is baking Lemon Meringue Pie. It makes sense considering Google dropped Key Lime Lime at the last minute in favor of KitKat. Pie lovers are still owed a slice of pie, and it appears they'll get it with the next Android release.</p> <p>You can find references to LMP is in the Android SDK, which mentions the current preview builds of Android L available for the Nexus 5 and Nexus 7 labeled as "lpm-preview-release." An LMP reference is also found in the Wi-Fi certification for HTC's "flounder" (Volantis) tablet, which points to LMP firmware.</p> <p>Fun fact (not about bears): Before Key Lime Pie was tossed aside for KitKat in Android 4.4, the release was known as KLP in internal documents.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> android android l Google lemon meringue pie operating system OS Software News Mon, 25 Aug 2014 18:36:03 +0000 Paul Lilly 28412 at China Plans to Build an Operating System to Replace Windows and Android <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/chinese_windows_7.jpg" alt="Chinese Windows 7" title="Chinese Windows 7" width="228" height="165" style="float: right;" />China's own operating system could be ready by October</h3> <p>After banning Microsoft's Windows 8 software for use on government PCs, <strong>China is now reportedly planning to cook up its own operating system</strong>. The home brewed OS could see a launch as early as October, and it would have the full backing of the Chinese government. China's motivation in building an OS of its own is to alleviate concerns that imported software from the likes of Microsoft, Google, and Apple could have spying mechanisms built into the code base.</p> <p>According to <em>Reuters</em>, China's OS would debut on desktop devices before expanding into smartphone and other mobile categories.</p> <p>"We hope to launch a Chinese-made desktop operating system by October supporting app stores," Ni Guangnan, head of an of an official OS development alliance, told the <em>People's Post and Telecommunications News</em>, <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Reuters</em> reports</a>.</p> <p>China banned the government use of Windows 8 back in May. Shortly after, China began investigating Microsoft for anti-trust violations.</p> <p>Tensions are also high between China and Google, with the former saying the latter has too much control over China's smartphone industry through Android.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> android china Google microsoft operating system OS Privacy Security Software Windows News Mon, 25 Aug 2014 17:10:02 +0000 Paul Lilly 28411 at Fuhu Unveils Ginormous 20-inch and 24-inch Nabi Big Tab Tablets for Kids <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/nabi_big_tab_hd.jpg" alt="Fuhu Nabi Big Tab HD" title="Fuhu Nabi Big Tab HD" width="228" height="205" style="float: right;" />A massive tablet for the little ones</h3> <p>At first glance, you might think <strong>Fuhu's 20-inch and 24-inch Nabi Big Tab HD tablets</strong> were built for Shaquille O'Neal. After all, who else but a 7-foot 1-inch massive specimen would such giant slates be for? Turns out Fuhu designed the large size tablets specifically for kids, an interesting target audience for what the company claims are the world's biggest Android tablets made for sharing.</p> <p>"We are so pleased to introduce the nabi Big Tab line of products and are excited about the implications as a new category of family tablets. We were simply amazed at how Big Tab's larger format transformed our interactions with our children, family gatherings and made the tablet experience easier for seniors," <a href="" target="_blank">said Jim Mitchell</a>, CEO. "We are hopeful, that everyone will fall in love with Big Tab like we have."</p> <p>Fair enough - we won't begrudge Fuhu's attempt to modernize family time, though consumers will be the ultimate judge if there can be a category such as this one. We're skeptical, considering the asking price -- $449 for the 20-inch model and $549 for the 24-inch version, both of which cost more than a PlayStation 4, Xbox One, or Wii U.</p> <p>The 20-inch version boasts a 1600x900 resolution and the 24-inch features a 1920x1080 display, both with 15-point capacitive touch support. Both also feature an Nvidia Tegra 4 quad-core processor, 16GB of onboard storage, and removable carrying frame.</p> <p>Fuhu's selling point (behind the big size displays) is the software. Lots of kid friendly games, entertainment, and educational apps come bundled with the Nabi devices.</p> <p>Both models will launch this fall.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> android fuhi Hardware mobile nabi big tab slate tablet News Tue, 19 Aug 2014 17:42:49 +0000 Paul Lilly 28378 at Nvidia Shield Tablet Review <!--paging_filter--><h3>Updated: Now with video review!&nbsp;</h3> <p>Despite its problems, we actually liked <a title="Nvidia Shield review" href="" target="_blank">Nvidia’s original Shield Android gaming handheld</a>. Our biggest issue with it was that it was bulky and heavy. With rumors swirling around about a Shield 2, we were hoping to see a slimmer, lighter design. So consider us initially disappointed when we learned that the next iteration of Shield would just be yet another Android tablet. Yawn, right? The fact of the matter is that the Shield Tablet may be playing in an oversaturated market, but it’s still great at what it sets out to be.</p> <p><iframe src="//" width="620" height="349" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>We've updated our review to include the video review above.</strong></p> <p>At eight inches, the Shield Tablet features a gorgeous 1900x1200 display, which shares the same resolution as Google’s flagship <a title="nexus 7 review" href="" target="_blank">Nexus 7</a> tablet. At 13.1 ounces, the Shield Tablet is about three ounces heavier than the Nexus 7 but still a lot lighter than the original’s 1 lb. 4.7 ounces.&nbsp;</p> <p>Part of the weight increase with the Shield Tablet over the Nexus 7 is due to the extra inch that you’re getting from the screen, but also because the Shield Tablet is passively cooled and has an extra thermal shield built inside to dissipate heat. It’s a little heavier than we like, but isn’t likely to cause any wrist problems. On the back of the Shield is an anti-slip surface and a 5MP camera, and on the front of the tablet is a front-facing 5MP camera and two front-facing speakers. While the speakers are not going to blow away dedicated Bluetooth speakers, they sound excellent for a tablet. In addition to the speakers, the Shield Tablet has a 3.5mm headphone jack up at the top. Other ports include Micro USB, Mini HDMI out, and a MicroSD card slot capable of taking up to 128GB cards. Buttons on the Shield include a volume rocker and a power button, which we found to be a little small and shallow for our liking.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u154082/shield_tablet_exploded_view_black_bckgr.jpg" alt="Nvidia Shield Tablet guts" title="Nvidia Shield Tablet guts" width="620" height="349" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>The guts of the Nvidia Shield Tablet.</strong></p> <p>All of this is running on the latest version of Android KitKat (4.4). Nvidia says that it will update the tablet to Android L within a few weeks of Google’s official release. If Nvidia’s original Shield is any indication of how well the company keeps up with OS updates, you should be able to expect to get the latest version of Android after a couple of weeks, if not a months, after release. Regardless, the Shield Tablet is running a pretty stock version of Android to begin with, the main difference being that Nvidia has pre-loaded the tablet with its Shield Hub, which is a 10-foot UI used to purchase, download, and launch games.</p> <p>Arguably, the real star of the tablet is Nvidia’s new Tegra K1 mobile superchip. The 2.2GHz quad-core A15 SOC features Nvidia’s Kepler GPU architecture and 192 CUDA cores along with 2GB of low-power DDR3. K1 supports many of the graphical features commonplace in GeForce graphics cards, including tesselation, HDR lighting, Global illumination, subsurface scattering, and more.</p> <p>In our performance benchmarks, the K1 killed it. Up until now, the original Shield’s actively cooled Tegra 4 is arguably one of the most, if not <em>the</em> most, powerful Android SOC on the market, but the K1 slaughters it across the board. In Antutu and GeekBench benchmark, we saw modest gains of 12 percent to 23 percent in Shield vs. Shield Tablet action. But in Passmark and GFX Bench’s Trex test, we saw nearly a 50 percent spread, and in 3DMark’s mobile Icestorm Unlimited test, we saw an astounding 90 percent advantage for the Shield Tablet. This is incredible when you consider that the tablet has no fans and a two-watt TDP. Compared to the second-gen Nexus 7, the Shield Tablet benchmarks anywhere from 77 percent to 250 percent faster. This SOC is smoking fast.</p> <p>In terms of battery life, Nvidia claims you’ll get 10 hours watching/surfing the web and about five hours from gaming with its 19.75 Wh battery. This is up 3.75 Wh up from Google’s Nexus 7 equivalent, and from our experiential tests, we found those figures to be fairly accurate if not a best-case scenario. It will pretty much last you all day, but you'll still want to let it sip juice every night.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u154082/shield_tablet_shield_controller_war_thunder.jpg" alt="Shield Tablet review" title="Shield Tablet review" width="620" height="343" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>The new wireless controller uses Wi-Fi Direct instead of Bluetooth for lower latency.</strong></p> <p>Of course, if you’re going to game with it, you’re going to need Nvidia’s new wireless Shield Controller. Sold separately for $60, the 11.2-ounce Shield Controller maintains the same button layout as the original Shield controller, but feels a lot lighter and is more comfortable to hold. While most Android game controllers operate over Bluetooth, Nvidia opted to go with Wi-Fi Direct, stating that it offers 2x faster response time and more bandwidth. The extra bandwidth allows you to plug a 3.5mm headphone into the controller and also allows you to link up to four controllers to the device, which is an appreciated feature when you hook up the tablet to your HDTV via the Shield Tablet’s <a title="shield console mode" href="" target="_blank">Console Mode</a>. Other unique features of the controller include capacitive-touch buttons for Android’s home, back, and play buttons. There’s also a big green Nvidia button that launches Shield Hub. The controller also has a small, triangle-shaped clickable touch pad which allows you to navigate your tablet from afar. One quibble with it is that we wish the trackpad was more square, to at least mimic the dimensions of the tablet; the triangle shape was a little awkward to interface with. Another problem that we initially had with the controller was that the + volume button stopped working after a while. We contacted Nvidia about this and the company sent us a new unit, which remedied the issue. One noticeable feature missing from the controller is rumble support. Nvidia said this was omitted on the original Shield to keep the weight down; its omission is a little more glaring this time around, however, since there's no screen attached to the device.</p> <p>The controller isn’t the only accessory that you’ll need to purchase separately if you want to tap into the full Shield Tablet experience. To effectively game with the tablet, you’ll need the Shield Tablet cover, which also acts as a stand. Like most tablets, a magnet in the cover shuts off the Shield Tablet when closed, but otherwise setting up the cover and getting it to act as a stand is initially pretty confusing. The cover currently only comes in black, and while we’re generally not big on marketing aesthetics, it would be nice to have an Nvidia green option to give the whole look a little more pop. We actually think the cover should just be thrown in gratis, especially considering that the cheapest 16GB model costs $300. On the upside though, you do get Nvidia’s new passive DirectStylus 2 that stows away nicely in the body of the Shield Tablet. Nvidia has pre-installed note-writing software and its own Nvidia Dabbler painting program. The nice thing about Dabbler is that it leverages the K1’s GPU acceleration so that you can virtually paint and blend colors in real time. There’s also a realistic mode where the “paint” slowly drips down the virtual canvas like it would in real life.&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u154082/shield_tablet_shield_controller_trine2_0.jpg" alt="Shield tablet review" title="Shield tablet review" width="620" height="404" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>The Shield Controller is a lot lighter and less blocky than the original Shield Portable.</strong></p> <p>But that’s probably not why you’re interested in the Shield Tablet. This device is first and foremost a gaming tablet and even comes with a free Android copy of Trine 2. Trine 2 was originally a PC game and it’s made a great transition to the Shield Tablet. While the game was never known to be a polygon pusher, it looks just as good as it ever did on its x86 debut.&nbsp;</p> <p>With gaming as the primary driver for Shield Tablet, you may wonder why Nvidia didn’t bundle its new controller. The company likely learned from Microsoft’s mistake with Kinect and the Xbox One: Gamers don’t like to spend money and getting the price as low as possible was likely on Nvidia’s mind. Of course, not everyone may even want a controller, with the general lack of support for them in games. Nvidia says there are now around 400 Android titles that support its controller, but that’s only a small percentage of Android games and the straight truth is that the overwhelming majority of these games are garbage.&nbsp;</p> <p>Nvidia is making a push for Android gaming, however. The company worked with Valve to port over Half Life 2 and Portal to the Shield and they look surprisingly fantastic and are easily the two prettiest games on Android at the moment. Whether Android will ever become a legitimate platform for hardcore gaming is anyone’s guess, but at least the Shield Tablet will net you a great front seat if the time ever arises.</p> <p>Luckily, you won’t have to rely solely on the Google Play store to get your gaming fix. Emulators run just as well here as they did on the original Shield and this iteration of Shield is also compatible with Gamestream, which is Nvidia’s streaming technology that allows you to stream games from your PC to your Shield. Gamestream, in theory, lets you play your controller-enabled PC games on a Shield.</p> <p>At this point, Nvidia says Gamestream supports more than 100 games such as Batman: Arkham Origins and Titanfall from EA’s Origin and Valve’s Steam service. The problem, though, is that there are hundreds more games on Steam and Origin that support controllers—but not the Shield Tablet’s controller. For example, Final Fantasy VII, a game that we couldn’t get to work with the original Shield, still isn't supported even though it works with an Xbox controller on the PC. When Gamestream does work, however, it’s relatively lag-free and kind of wonderful. The one caveat here is that you’ll have to get a 5GHz dual-band router to effectively get it working.&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><iframe src="//" width="620" height="349" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Nvidia Shield Video demo.</strong></p> <p>Would we buy the Shield Tablet if we owned the original Shield (now renamed the Shield Portable)? Probably not. If we were looking for a new tablet and top-notch gaming performance was on the checklist, the Shield Tablet is easily the top contender today. We’d take it over the second-gen Nexus 7 in a heartbeat. While we understand why Nvidia decided to separate the cover and controller to keep the prices down and avoid the Kinect factor, we think a bundled package with a small price break as an alternative would have been nice. All things considered though, consider us surprised. The Shield Tablet is pretty dang cool.&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>$300</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Update:</strong> The original article incorrectly labled the Shield Portable benchmarks with the Nexus 7 figures. The issue has been resolved and both benchmark charts are listed below.&nbsp;</em></p> android Google Hardware KitKat maximum pc nvidia portable Review shield tablet wireless controller News Reviews Tablets Mon, 18 Aug 2014 21:36:57 +0000 Jimmy Thang 28263 at Microsoft: We Have No Current Plans to Port IE Over to Android or iOS <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/ie_windows_phone.jpg" alt="IE on Windows Phone" title="IE on Windows Phone" width="228" height="221" style="float: right;" />"Oh no!," cried a single Android user</h3> <p>You can run Microsoft Office on multiple platforms, and the same goes for some of the other products and services the Redmond outfit offers, such as OneDrive and Skype. With that kind of attention being paid to cross-compatibility, might we expect Microsoft to release its Internet Explorer browser on other OSes as well? Not in the near future. As it stands, <strong>Microsoft isn't planning to port IE over to Android or iOS</strong> in the mobile space.</p> <p>That revelation came by way of a <a href="" target="_blank">Reddit Ask Me Anything (AMA) session</a> featuring engineers from Microsoft's IE platform team. At one point in the conversation, Microsoft's Charles Morris fielded a question about whether IE would be ported to Android or iOS where there's much more market share to exploit.</p> <p>"Right now, we're focused on building a great mobile browser for Windows Phone and have made some great progress lately. So, no current plans for Android/iOS," <a href="" target="_blank">Morris said</a>. "We are committed to improving our own engine. We love the fact that the web was built on multiple competing (yet interoperable) platforms and believe that this is how it is going to move forward into the future!"</p> <p>It's somewhat of a curious decision for Microsoft. The company's Windows Phone platform is losing ground, having dropped to a 2.5 percent share of the smartphone market last quarter, versus Android and iOS, which collectively account for more than 9 out of 10 smartphones.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> android browser IE Internet Explorer ios microsoft mobile windows phone News Fri, 15 Aug 2014 19:25:50 +0000 Paul Lilly 28358 at Nvidia Tegra K1 Claims Fame as First 64-Bit ARM Chip for Android <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/tegra_k1.jpg" alt="Nvidia Tegra K1" title="Nvidia Tegra K1" width="228" height="163" style="float: right;" />Android enters the 64-bit ARM era</h3> <p>Say hello to <strong>"Denver," the codename for Nvidia's 64-bit Tegra K1 System-on-Chip (SoC), which also happens to be the first 64-bit ARM processor for Android</strong>. The new version of Nvidia's Tegra K1 SoC pairs the company's Kepler architecture-based GPU with its own custom-designed, 64-bit, dual-core "Project Denver" CPU, which Nvidia says is fully ARMv8 architecture compatible.</p> <p>So, what's special about this chip besides a 64-bit instruction set? Nvidia designed Denver to offer the highest single-core CPU throughput and industry-leading dual-core performance. Each Denver core (and there are two) sports a 7-way superscaler microarchitecture and includes a 128KB 4-way L1 instruction cache, a 64KB 4-way L1 data cache, and a 2MB 16-way L2 cache that services both cores.</p> <p>Using a process called Dynamic Code Optimization, Denver optimizes frequently used software routines at runtime into dense, highly tuned microcode-equivalent routines stored in a dedicated 128MB main-memory based optimization cache. This allows for faster access and execution, which translates into faster performance, in part because it lessens the need to re-optimize the software routine.</p> <p>Denver will also benefit Android platforms with new low latency power-state transitions. This is in addition to extensive power-gating and dynamic voltage and clock scaling routines based on workloads. The end result is more efficient power usage, which allows Denver's performance to rival even some mainstream PC-class CPUs at significantly reduced power consumption, <a href="" target="_blank">Nvidia says</a>.</p> <p>If you want to dig even further into the architecture, you can get more details <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> 64-bit android ARM cpu denver Hardware nvidia processor tegra k1 News Tue, 12 Aug 2014 17:32:21 +0000 Paul Lilly 28334 at HP's 14-inch Slatebook Running Android is Now Available for $430 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/slatebook.jpg" alt="HP Slatebook" title="HP Slatebook" width="228" height="169" style="float: right;" />Android-based laptop could be held back by high price tag</h3> <p>For those interested in a laptop running Android, the <strong>HP Slatebook is now available on Amazon for $430</strong>. It's a 14-inch notebook running Android 4.3 Jelly Bean and powered by an Nvidia Tegra 4.0 processor running at 1.8GHz, 2GB of DDR3L RAM, and 16GB solid state drive. The configuration is along the lines of a Chromebook, though the pricing is in the low-end spectrum of Windows laptops.</p> <p>That may ultimately be a deal killer, especially since there's more you can do with a Windows laptop that costs about the same. Nevertheless, HP is banking on there being customers who find appeal in running all of their Android apps on a notebook as opposed to a smartphone or tablet PC.</p> <p>The 14-inch display boasts a 1920x1080 resolution and 10 points of capacitive touch. Other features include 802.11n Wi-Fi, two USB 2.0 ports, a single USB 3.0 port, HD webcam, Bluetooth, and a 3-cell battery good for up to 9 hours run time. It measures 13.54 inches (W) x 9.45 inches (D) x 0.63 inches (H) and weighs 3.71 pounds.</p> <p>Intrigued? Find out more on <a href=";camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00KB3K6G4&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=hothard-20" target="_blank">Amazon</a>.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> <div style="width: 100%; max-width: 600px; margin: 0 auto;"><iframe src="//" width="600" height="400" frameborder="0" scrolling="no"></iframe><br /> <div style="text-align:center;"><a style="font:10px/14px arial;color:#3d3d3d;" href="" target="_blank">Included RAM and Processing Speed of Cheap Laptops | FindTheBest</a></div> </div> android Hardware hewlett-packard hp laptop notebook slatebook News Mon, 04 Aug 2014 16:20:53 +0000 Paul Lilly 28284 at Effort to Transition Chrome to BoringSSL Underway <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="" alt="Chrome" title="Chrome" width="228" height="228" style="float: right;" /></h3> <h3>BoringSSL is a fork of OpenSSL</h3> <p>An effort is currently underway to switch Google Chrome over to <strong>BoringSSL, an OpenSSL fork the search engine giant announced last month</strong>. Weaning the world’s most popular browser off of the two cryptographic software libraries it currently uses (OpenSSL on Android and Mozilla NSS on all other platforms) is proving somewhat difficult at this early stage, though.</p> <p>There have been a number of issues ever since developers first began adding <a href="" target="_blank">BoringSSL</a> code to Chromium earlier this month. Just take a look at this recent <a href="" target="_blank">revision note by Google engineer David Benjamin</a>: “This is a reland of r284079 which was reverted in r284248 for components build issues. That, in turn, was a reland of r283813 which was reverted in r283845 because it broke WebRTC tests on Android. That, in turn, was a reland of r283542 which was reverted in r283591 because it broke the WebView build.”</p> <p>“This [the switch to BoringSSL] is a much larger change than its diff suggests.” Benjamin wrote further. “If it breaks something, please revert first and ask questions later.”</p> <p>Follow Pulkit on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a></p> android boringssl chrome chromium cryptographic software library heartbleed libressl mozilla nss openssl Security News Mon, 28 Jul 2014 05:33:49 +0000 Pulkit Chandna 28248 at VIA Toughens Up Android, Launches Ruggedized Viega Tablet <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/via_viega.jpg" alt="VIA Viega" title="VIA Viega" width="228" height="132" style="float: right;" />Not your ordinary Android slate</h3> <p><strong>VIA today unveiled its new Viega ruggedized Android tablet</strong>. Armed with a 10.1-inch display, the Viega features IP65 certification and rocks a durable design that protects it from spills, rain, dust, shock, vibration, drops from up to two meters, and more. It has tempered glass to prevent cracks in the panel from cutting your workday short when you're out in the field, and an "extra long-life polymer batter pack" that's good for up to 9 hours of runtime.</p> <p>A 1.2GHz dual-core ARM Cortex A9 SoC with NEON technology runs the show, Other specs include 1GB of DDR3 RAM, 16GB eMMC flash, optional 2MP front and 5MP rear cameras, micro SIM slot, microSD card slot, two micro USB ports, micro HDMI output, Wi-Fi, 3G, GPS, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC support, stereo speakers, and Android 4.2.</p> <p>"As more and more enterprises seek to increase productivity and improve customer service by equipping their staff with mobile devices, they are quickly learning that it is critically important to deploy customized solutions built to withstand the demands of their target environments rather than standard off-the-shelf products," <a href="" target="_blank">said Epan Wu</a>, Head of the VIA Embedded Platform Division, VIA Technologies, Inc. "With its rugged design, enhanced security features, and customization support, the VIA Viega addresses this need and provides the longevity support that enterprise level customers require."</p> <p>No word yet on when the Viega will be available to purchase or for how much.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> android enterprise Hardware mobile rugged slate tablet VIA viega News Tue, 15 Jul 2014 14:43:56 +0000 Paul Lilly 28166 at Google Talks Android L, Set-Top Box, and More at I/O Developer Conference <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/google_io_1.jpg" alt="Google I/O" title="Google I/O" width="228" height="128" style="float: right;" />It's shaping up to an Android world</h3> <p><strong>Google's I/O developer conference kicked off today</strong> and much of the talk so far has been about Android, Android, and more Android. That's not surprising, or even a bad thing, especially if you're a fan of the open-source platform. Based on the keynote, Google wants to expand Android into just about every facet of your life, from your living room to your car and everywhere in between.</p> <h3>Android L</h3> <p>One of the most exciting developments is that of Android "L," the next version of Android (it may still end up being called Lollipop), and its underlying Android Runtime (ART) software layer. Through ART, Google claims Android apps will run roughly twice as fast as they do currently. The best part about that is developers don't have to do anything different with existing apps.</p> <p>"All your app code gets the performance for free," Android Engineering Dave Burke said, <a href="" target="_blank">according to <em>CNET</em></a>.</p> <p>ART also works on 64-bit chips, though not just ARM-based processors that are so prevalent in mobile today -- it also supports 64-bit x86-64 parts from Intel and AMD, along with the MIPS64 architecture from MIPS.</p> <p>Just as iOS recently underwent a major design change, so too will Android with its "L" release. You can expect a flatter aesthetic, rounder elements, softer edges, simplified shapes, smooth transition animations, the illusion of depth through elevation and shadows, and more.</p> <p>On the feature end, you'll be able to interact with notifications from the Lock screen, which will be sorted by relevance and importance rather than chronologically. <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Endgadget</em> has more</a> on what you can expect.</p> <h3>Android TV (Set-Top Box)</h3> <p>Google has some unfinished business in the living room. As was previously rumored, Google is releasing a set-top box to compete with the likes of Apple TV and Roku. It's called Android TV but unlike the company's failed Google TV platform, it will have an added focus on gaming.</p> <p>According to <a href="" target="_blank"><em>The Verge</em></a>, search is baked into the Android TV experience, as is content from the Google Play Store. It will provide recommendations based on what you watch, and you'll even be able to control the software with an Android Wear-enabled smartwatch.</p> <h3>Android Auto</h3> <p>With your living room and mobile devices covered, Google switched gears to automobiles and discussed Android Auto with a redesigned interface built specifically for cars.</p> <p>"Android Auto will make it easier and safer to use the connected services drivers want in a card," Google's Patrick Brady said, <a href="" target="_blank">according to <em>ArsTechnica</em></a>.</p> <p>Things like navigation, communication, and music will be front and center so you don't have to fiddle around looking for the appropriate app. It's also voice enabled, allowing you to keep your hands on the wheel and eyes where they should be -- on the road.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> android android l Google google I/O open source Software News Wed, 25 Jun 2014 18:34:15 +0000 Paul Lilly 28071 at Microsoft's First Android Phone (Nokia X2) Focuses on Affordability <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/nokia_x2.jpg" alt="Nokia X2" title="Nokia X2" width="228" height="135" style="float: right;" />Nokia X2 rolls out globally in July for 99 euros</h3> <p>The day has finally come that Microsoft released an Android handset. Of course, we knew this day was coming, the wheels of which were set in motion when Microsoft acquired Nokia's mobile division. Still, it's a bit surreal. That said, <strong>Microsoft's launch of the Nokia X2</strong> isn't about dominating the Android space with a high-end handset, but about introducing the "next billion" people to the mobile Internet and cloud services.</p> <p>This is an entry level device from head to toe. The Nokia X2 has a 4.3-inch display with an 800x480 resolution powered by a Snapdragon 200 dual-core processor clocked at 1.2GHz and 1GB of RAM. It also features a 5-megapixel rear-facing camera with autofocus and flash, 0.3-megapixel front-facing camera, and an 1800 mAh battery that's good for up to 10 hours of talk time on 2G, up to 13 hours of talk time on 3G, and up to 23 days of standby time.</p> <p>Microsoft is being careful not to overly promote the Android brand. While Microsoft is <a href="" target="_blank">quick to point out</a> that the Nokia X2 "provides access to a world of Android apps and popular Microsoft services," the OS is referred to as the Nokia X Software Platform 2.0, which we hear is based on Android 4.3 Jelly Bean.</p> <p>The Nokia X2 will launch as a dual-SIM device available in glossy orange, black, and green in July for 99 euros. Later on Microsoft will add glossy yellow, white, and matte gray color options to the lineup. All of these seem destined for developing regions rather than places like the U.S. where Microsoft would prefer you purchase a Lumia handset.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> android Hardware microsoft mobile nokia x2 smartphone News Tue, 24 Jun 2014 15:33:31 +0000 Paul Lilly 28061 at Kill Switch in iPhone is Working, Microsoft and Google to Follow Suit <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/activate_iphone.jpg" alt="Activate iPhone" title="Activate iPhone" width="228" height="201" style="float: right;" />iPhone thefts are down as a result of kill switch technology in iOS 7</h3> <p>One of the debates in the mobile phone industry is whether or not so-called kill switches can actually reduce smartphone theft. Well, early indications suggest that they do. <strong>Authorities in New York and San Francisco -- two locations where smartphone theft is a growing epidemic -- say they've seen a drop in iPhone robberies</strong> since Apple implemented its Activation Lock feature in iOS 7.</p> <p>Looking at data in the six months before and after Apple implemented the feature, police said iPhone theft in San Francisco dropped 38 percent. Those in London -- another place where smartphone theft happens far too often -- fell 24 percent. As for New York, robberies involving Apple products dropped 19 percent, and those involving grand larcenies went down 29 percent in the first five months of 2014 compared with the same time frame in 2013, <a href=";_type=blogs&amp;_r=0" target="_blank"><em>The New York Times</em> reports</a>.</p> <p>Police have long believed that this type of antitheft technology would discourage crooks from stealing smartphones, and the data up to this point shows they're right. However, kill switch technology might not deserve all the credit. There are other factors at play, such as an increased effort on the part of law enforcement and tech companies to educate consumers on additional security measures to protect their handsets -- things like setting up passcodes.</p> <p>Regardless of the debate, the industry is moving forward with kill switches. As it stands, both Google and Microsoft have plans to implement antitheft technology into the next version of their respective mobile operating systems. Between the three platforms -- iOS, Android, and Windows Phone -- almost every new device will have a kill switch.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> android Google iOS 7 iphone kill switch microsoft mobile Security smartphone windows phone News Thu, 19 Jun 2014 15:20:23 +0000 Paul Lilly 28035 at BlackBerry Inks Deal with Amazon to Offer Android Apps on BB10 Handsets <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/blackberry_android.jpg" alt="BlackBerry Android" title="BlackBerry Android" width="228" height="171" style="float: right;" />Can Amazon fix BlackBerry's app problem?</h3> <p>Desperate times call for desperate measures, and for BlackBerry, that means opening up your ecosystem to run Android apps -- some of them, anyway. <strong>BlackBerry announced today that Amazon Appstore will be available with the launch of the BlackBerrry 10.3 operating system this fall</strong>. The deal will give BlackBerry users access to more than 240,000 Android apps, including popular titles like Netflix, Pinterest, and Minecraft.</p> <p>"Making the Amazon Appstore available on BlackBerry 10 devices will help BlackBerry continue to meet two essential needs: greater app availability for our smartphone users and enhanced productivity solutions for enterprises," <a href="" target="_blank">said BlackBerry Executive Chairman and CEO John Chen</a>. "We’ve listened to our customers and have taken this important step to deliver on their needs, while executing on our strategy."</p> <p>BlackBerry has tried various different strategies up to this point to try and regain relevance in the mobile space. However, consumers have continued to show a much stronger preference for Android and iOS. By tapping into Android, BlackBerry has a shot at reclaiming lost customers.</p> <p>The other upside for BlackBerry is that this deal frees itself up to focus on enterprise applications.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> amazon android apps bb10 BlackBerry mobile smartphone Software News Wed, 18 Jun 2014 15:39:15 +0000 Paul Lilly 28026 at Google Maps Android App Breaches 1 Billion Downloads Mark <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="" alt="Google Maps Android" title="Google Maps Android" width="228" height="137" style="float: right;" /></h3> <h3>Only the second Android app to do so</h3> <p>Seeing as how Google’s many apps are a staple on most Android devices, it’s not surprising that some of the most downloaded apps on the world’s most popular mobile platform come from the search engine giant’s stable. It was only last month that it became the <strong>first company to have an Android app with over 1 billion downloads</strong>, and now it has two.</p> <p>The Google Maps Android application, which debuted in late 2008 and became the first app on the platform to reach the 50 million downloads mark in 2011, <a href="" target="_blank">has now amassed over 1 billion downloads</a>, making it only the second app to do so after Gmail. </p> <p>With many other Google-developed apps, including Search, Text-to-Speech and YouTube, not too far behind, we expect Android’s 1 billion downloads club to remain an all-Google affair for quite some time to come.</p> <p>Follow Pulkit on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a></p> android Gmail Google google maps play store News Mon, 16 Jun 2014 05:37:42 +0000 Pulkit Chandna 28007 at