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CyanogenMod becomes a company, gets $7 million in financing, aims to release a ROM installer on the Play Store

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The best-known custom Android ROM, CyanogenMod, has turned from a hobby project to a proper company as Steve Kondik (the man who started it) announces the foundation of CyanogenMod Inc.

The baby-faced company has reportedly secured $7 million in funding and is looking to become the third ecosystem behind regular Android and iOS (watch your back, BlackBerry OS and Windows Phone). Read more »

BBM arriving on Android and iOS this weekend

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Good news for those who have been waiting for BBM on iOS and Android (yes, all four of you). BlackBerry has finally announced the dates when you will be able to download the app for your iOS or Android device.

Android users will be getting their hands on BBM first on September 21. iPhone users, meanwhile, will have to contain their enthusiasm for a day longer, and can download the app on September 22. Both apps will be available for free from their respective stores. Read more »

Google enables bandwidth compression feature in Chrome for iOS, invitations only

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Google has enabled a data compression feature on Chrome for iOS, which cuts data usage by up to alleged 50%. The feature has been available for the beta version of Chrome for Android, and now it is making a first, limited appearance for iOS as well.

The way the data compression works is this – you request a web page in Google Chrome, it then goes through Google’s servers where it gets compressed and this is the version of the page you get. It’s the same, but up to 50% smaller in size. Read more »

Apple will offer the last compatible version of apps to users with older devices

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With most of the Apple community eagerly waiting for the release of iOS 7 tomorrow, the Cupertino giant showed that it has not forgotten the users of older iOS hardware. Users of Apple devices which will not receive iOS 7 will be automatically offered the last compatible version of the iOS apps they are trying to download going forward.

The new feature will activate when users attempt to download an app which is no longer supported by their firmware. Read more »

Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 8.0 and 10.1 will support multi-user functionality in the nearest future

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Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 8.0 and 10.1 comes with Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean on board, but unfortunately, both the slates does not come with all the goodies of the 4.2 version. It looks like Samsung omitted the multi-user capabilities for both the tablets in its final software.

However, Samsung has will be adding support for the multi-user functionality on both the tablets through their upcoming respective software updates. Read more »

BlackBerry Messenger for Android leaks in APK form, doesn’t do anything yet

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BlackBerry’s BBM messaging platform has leaked for Android today on the XDA Developers forums. The app itself, while functioning, is pretty much useless as it fails to register with BBM servers and thus still doesn’t do anything.

The app is reported to currently be able of running only on whitelisted devices, which we presume are dev units inside the BlackBerry HQ. Read more »

Jolla announces that Sailfish OS can run on Android phones and tablets, supports Android apps too

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Jolla just announced that its Sailfish OS has reached two-fold compatibility with Android – it can run Android apps but also the OS itself can run on Android phones. This is major news as it solves the two big problems facing any upstart OS – it’s difficult to get hardware manufacturers to make devices for it and difficult to get devs to make apps for it.

By the looks of it, if a maker wishes to have a spin, it could put Sailfish on a phone or tablet that was designed with Android in mind. Read more »

Siri graduates out of Beta after nearly two years in existence

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It has been nearly two years since Apple debuted its virtual personal assistant Siri on the iPhone 4S and ever since the service has been labeled as Beta. As of September 18 that’ll be no more and Siri will finally enter its first final version.

Apple’s official rollout of the final version of iOS 7 also marks Siri’s update for all devices that support it. Siri’s graduation marks a new look inspired by the major redesign of iOS 7. Gone are the fancy graphics and in is a more flat, organized way of displaying information. Read more »

Twitter 5.0 Beta hits Play Store beta testers, goes for a more Holo UI with swipeable tabs

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Twitter started its own Google Play beta testing campaign and now the handful of people that registered for the early beta releases on Google+ (now closed) can get to experience the latest version of its Android app.

The latest release – Twitter 5.0 beta for Android brings a significant (and welcome) UI overhaul that changes the fixed clickable tabs for swipeable ones that you can rearrange through the side-accessible menu. Read more »

Sony Xperia Z1 gets rooted prior to release

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While the launch of the new Sony Xperia Z1 flagship is still a week away in most markets, some enthusiastic early developers in China have already figured out a way to gain root access to the device.

The process is surprisingly simple and involves using the tool found at 360-Root, connecting your Xperia Z1 via USB, and clicking the ‘Root’ button. The tool is all in Chinese, but you can’t really get it wrong. Read more »

Symantec: 1000 fraudulent apps submitted to the Google Play Store in August alone

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A recently published report by software security company Symantec shows that August has seen a peak of fraudulent apps for Android being submitted to the Google Play Store.

In fact, close to 1,000 scam apps have been published in August alone, which in total have been downloaded “at least” 8,500 times as per Google Play’s own statistic. However, Symantec says that this number is actually close to 10,000 as the statistics aren’t always showing the latest data. Read more »

Dryft keyboard for tablets makes typing easier by tracking your fingers

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A new keyboard interface designed for tablets aims to let you type easier and quicker by automatically repositioning the keyboard under your fingers, wherever they may be on the screen.

This is helpful because you no longer have to locate the row of buttons where you usually rest your fingers on traditional hardware keyboards, allowing you to type more intuitively. Read more »

PayPal announces Beacon, a Bluetooth USB dongle that will accept your smartphone as a hands-free payment method

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Meet the PayPal Beacon, a USB dongle, powered by Bluetooth Low Energy that will await PayPal customers in participating stores, recognize their PayPal identity by pairing to their smartphone’s PayPal app as they walk in and even let them automatically pay for their goods, no hands required.

The first participating stores are Booker, Erply, Leaf, Leapset, Micros, NCR, PayPal Here, Revel, ShopKeep, TouchBistro and Vend, but more are expected to crop up as 100 developers are poised to get the dongle and API early. The PayPal Beacon is expected to become wide-spread starting Q4 of this year. Read more »

Google revamps its Gmail for featurephones client

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The fact that featurephones are rapidly losing popularity hasn’t prevented Google from revamping its Gmail application for these phones in order to improve the performance and user experience.

Accordingly, Google is rolling out a new update that brings a new look that’s faster and easier to use. Read more »

The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Multi Vision is an awesome new feature you would probably never use

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The features that Samsung has baked into the TouchWiz user interface on the Galaxy Note 3 are so many that the company has issued a 16-minute official hands-on video just so they can go over the key ones. However, on that video there is one really innovative feature missing. And it’s awesome – that’s Multi Vision.

Multi Vision on the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 allows you to stack up several devices and get a bigger resulting screen area for your content. But really? It’s sounds way cooler than it’s useful, because… you know… who has four of these just lying around? Read more »