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10,000 Samsung Gear S smartwatches sold in South Korea on the first day

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The Samsung Gear S, a Tizen-powered smartwatch with its own voice and data connection, launched about a week ago in its home country of South Korea and apparently passed 10,000 sales on Day 1. The 3G-enabled smartwatch went on sale on November 5 through local carriers SK Telecom and KT.

This number doesn’t include sales from other regions where the Gear S launched. Read more »

Facebook Messenger reaches 500 million monthly active users

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This year Facebook split off the chat functionality from its main app into a separate Messenger app, which pretty soon became a mandatory download for those who use Facebook for chatting. Despite the bombardment of 1-star reviews from unhappy users, the Messenger app reached 500 million downloads in late August.

Now, the social network has announced that the app gets 500 million users each month. Read more »

Sony demoes early build of Android 5.0 Lollipop on Xperia’s Z1 through Z3

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Sony has committed to bringing Android 5.0 Lollipop to its Xperia Z family and today it revealed the first step – an early development version of the new OS running the Xperia Z1, Z2 and Z3.

The software is not suitable for daily use, but will give developers a chance to start working on their projects sooner. Read more »

New wrist straps let you change the look of the Samsung Gear S

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The Samsung Gear S is available only in Black or White but now the you can add a splash of color to it with five Wrist Straps. There’s also the Bangle Strap, which only comes in black and white, but is wider than the original strap, so it still gives the smartwatch a makeover.

The Wrist Straps have narrow bands that go around the body of the Gear S watch so they add color to its otherwise black face (even the White model has a black front panel). Read more »

Opera Mini 9 for iOS brings video compression to eliminate buffering

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With dropping prices for mobile data and faster speeds with increasing LTE coverage, Opera Mini and its compression technology has been fading in recent years. Opera is still kicking around though and it just released Mini version 9 for iOS with what the team thinks is a compelling feature – video compression.

Currently 53% of the global mobile data is taken up by streaming videos, so it’s a big market. Read more »

Samsung Galaxy Note Edge hands-on

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Samsung is looking for applications for its bendy Super AMOLED screens and while it was mostly for show on the Galaxy Round, the Galaxy Note Edge challenges the rule of flat-screened UI of smartphones with its unique Edge screen.

The right side of the screen bends around to the side of the device and while it’s technically a part of the screen, it acts as a separate, utility screen. Read more »

Amazon Prime users now get unlimited photo storage

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Amazon increased the price of its Prime service early this year but it keeps adding new features to make it worth the $100 a year. The latest addition is that Prime members get unlimited photo storage for free.

Photos go in the Amazon Cloud Drive where they can be viewed on various smart devices – from smartphones to certain Smart TVs from Samsung and LG and, of course, through Amazon’s Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. Read more »

Microsoft rebranding Nokia apps, memories.nokia.com to shut down

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Microsoft is discontinuing the Nokia brand for its smartphones and is in the process of renaming Nokia-branded apps to “Lumia”. Some apps have already been rebadged but for some it’s a little harder – Nokia Cinemagraph used to host shared images on memories.nokia.com, but that’s shutting down and “memories” will be deleted come January.

Cinemagraphs stored on your phone will not be affected but if you have any on the Nokia site you’ll have to manually download a copy. Read more »

Kyocera Proteus prototype is a bendy smartphone that can turn into a bracelet

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We’ve seen bendable screens from both Samsung and LG but Japanese tech company Kyocera has been working on the problem since 2009. Kyocera’s concept is called the Proteus, which will be a smartphone that’s bendy enough to turn into a bracelet.

AMOLED seems to be the popular choice of display tech here, but Kyocera wants to take it further and create a bezel-less display with a physical keypad that appears and disappears on demand. Read more »

HP and Michael Bastian introduce MB Chronowing smartwatch

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Smartwatches are in and HP wants a piece of the action. Instead of going for an established, feature-rich platform, HP went for style and partnered with Michael Bastian for a more classic watch look and durability.

The base model features a 44mm stainless steel casing, three exchangeable straps, 5ATM (50m) water resistance and a week of battery life. Read more »

Xbox One will get a $50 price cut in the US starting November 2

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If you are waiting for Black Friday for a good deal on the Xbox One you’ll be pleased to hear that you can get a discount in a few days – starting November 2 Microsoft will offer its current-gen console at $350, $50 off its regular, Kinect-less price.

For the more expensive bundles (with extra storage and custom console/controller design) you can save up to $150. Read more »

UPDATED: Apple iPad Air 2: will it bend?

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“The iPhone 6 Plus bends in your pocket!” This sort of titles are still fresh in our minds and now more Apple products have launched – the new iPads. So, will the super-thin Apple iPad Air 2 bend? You can probably guess the answer but someone recorded the test on video to the tune of €490 (at least I’m hoping he wasn’t using a 64GB iPad for this).

The video is 1 minute and 5 seconds long – that’s €7.54 a second! Read more »

Dutch Samsung Galaxy Alpha ad features Doutzen Kroes

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The Netherlands division of Samsung Mobile has enlisted the help of Dutch model/actress/Victoria’s Secret Angel Doutzen Kroes to promote the Samsung Galaxy Alpha.

The campaign kicks off with a 20 second “Your Style, Your Galaxy Alpha” video ad and some Doutzen branding on the Dutch Galaxy Alpha product page. Read more »

ABI: Chromebook shipments expected to double this year

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The Chromebook may have gotten a slow start but is experiencing a continued period of growth. Shipments in Q3 increased by 67% compared to the previous quarter and are on track to double year-over-year, according to analyst firm ABI Research.

The analysts draw comparisons to the short-lived explosion of netbooks but say that a cost effective laptop that’s versatile and functional is something consumers want. Read more »

Samsung talks about the Galaxy Note 4 and Note Edge design

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Samsung designers have opened up about the Galaxy Note 4 and Note Edge design for an inside look of how Samsung’s latest flagships came to be. The fourth generation, say the designers, is focused even more on the combination of digital (the flagship specs) and analog (the S Pen experience) and aims to deliver a “warm and emotional” design.

The addition of a metal frame was done at the request of users but the designers were against adding metal for metal’s sake. Read more »