Intel Plans to Bring 3D Scanning to Tablets and Smartphones

Intel has been developing technology that brings 3D scanners to tablets, and plans to include the feature in consumer models by 2015. Next, the company expects to place the same technology in smartphones, in addition to incorporating 3D scanning cameras onto drones. The idea is, after scanning, Intel’s RealSense will produce a 3D model that the user can then manipulate with software or send to a 3D printer. At New York’s MakerCon, the company demonstrated the technology. Continue reading Intel Plans to Bring 3D Scanning to Tablets and Smartphones

Apple’s Open Letter Explains Privacy Tips, Security Methods

Following the iCloud security breach involving controversial celebrity photos, Apple is trying to regain consumer trust by encouraging users to utilize their new and pre-existing security features. The company revealed how it encrypts messages and offered tips for protecting user data in a newly-launched website. In the open letter, Apple CEO Tim Cook takes a swing at Google for monetizing users’ private data and reassures Apple users that their data is safe from the government. Continue reading Apple’s Open Letter Explains Privacy Tips, Security Methods

Nest and Google are Aiming to Design Smarter Home Devices

With Google’s vast resources, Nest CEO Tony Fadell is hoping to bring home appliances and consumer electronics together in a new line of sleek connected home devices. The plan is to develop a line of smart refrigerators, TVs, light bulbs, thermostats, smoke alarms, and security cameras that can all interact with each other. In typical Google fashion, Nest wants anybody to be able to connect to their hardware, so they released a developer program for other companies. Continue reading Nest and Google are Aiming to Design Smarter Home Devices

Microsoft to Pay $2.5 Billion for Mojang, Maker of ‘Minecraft’

Microsoft has agreed to purchase Mojang, the Swedish company responsible for developing the world-building computer game “Minecraft.” The $2.5 billion cash deal, expected to be completed later this year, will bring the immensely popular title — and the Stockholm-based Mojang team — to Microsoft Studios, which publishes blockbuster game series such as “Fable” and “Halo.” “Minecraft” is currently the most popular online game on Xbox, and the top paid app for iOS and Android in the U.S. Continue reading Microsoft to Pay $2.5 Billion for Mojang, Maker of ‘Minecraft’

Bigger is Better for New iPhones: Online Orders Top 4 Million

The global trend in smartphones is larger screens, and it looks like consumers are already responding to the larger sizes of the new iPhones. Apple announced yesterday that early orders for the iPhone 6 (4.7 inches diagonally) and iPhone 6 Plus (5.5 inches) have exceeded four million in the first 24 hours of availability via online ordering. That figure is about double the number of early orders the company received online for the 4-inch iPhone 5 two years ago. The new iPhones will hit store shelves this Friday. Continue reading Bigger is Better for New iPhones: Online Orders Top 4 Million

Facebook Aims to Connect the World, Starting With WhatsApp

While WhatsApp will continue to be an independent app, its acquisition by Facebook should help it reach up to three billion users, suggests Mark Zuckerberg. WhatsApp had 450 million users around the time that Facebook agreed to buy it for $19 billion, but has now reached 600 million. Facebook currently reaches around 1.3 billion people, which is half of the world’s Internet connected population. The company is focusing on spreading Internet access around the globe. Continue reading Facebook Aims to Connect the World, Starting With WhatsApp

Amazon Update Brings Prime Instant Video to Android Phones

Amazon announced yesterday that it plans to make Prime Instant Video available to all Android phones in the U.S., U.K. and Germany. An update to the Amazon app for Android will enable users to stream movies and TV shows available through Prime Instant Video. However, users will first need to install or update the Amazon app, and then use in-app tools to install the Amazon Instant Video player app. Users will also need to enable a phone setting that allows installing of apps from outside the Google Play store. Continue reading Amazon Update Brings Prime Instant Video to Android Phones

Vidmind Debuts Next-Gen STB, TiVo Readies New 24TB DVR

Israel-based Vidmind plans to unveil the second generation of its Android set-top box this week at IBC in Amsterdam. The company hopes to attract cord cutters with an offering that combines over-the-air broadcast TV with live streaming and on-demand content. Meanwhile, TiVo has announced its 24TB TiVo Mega, slated for launch early next year. For $5,000 you can record six shows at once and store up to 4,000 hours of HD programming (or 26,000 hours of SD content). It also includes free TiVo service for life. Continue reading Vidmind Debuts Next-Gen STB, TiVo Readies New 24TB DVR

Millennials Represent the Largest Number of Smartphone Users

Millennials have more smartphones than any other age group in the U.S., currently at 85 percent. Statistics show that nearly 43 percent of these users opt for iPhones while 52 percent prefer Android devices. The choice to use Android is based on cost rather than software or hardware. Millennials spend 37 hours per month on their phones, most commonly engaged with social networking, entertainment and messaging. Users 25 to 44 use the most apps, an important statistic for developers. Continue reading Millennials Represent the Largest Number of Smartphone Users

YouTube Feature Enables Fans to Donate to Content Creators

In order for online video producers to make money, YouTube offers a feature that allows viewers to donate to their favorite artists. Independent content creators are the major source of revenue for YouTube, and while some of them do make money through pre-roll ads, it is not enough for many. Now, Google offers Fan Funding so viewers can essentially tip their favorite video creators. The feature works in both the browser and the Android app, and all transactions are processed by Google Wallet. Continue reading YouTube Feature Enables Fans to Donate to Content Creators

Google Settles with FTC, Will Refund $19 Million to Customers

The Federal Trade Commission announced yesterday that Google will refund consumers at least $19 million for unauthorized charges that resulted from their children making in-app purchases on Android mobile devices. The FTC alleged that Google was guilty of unfair commercial practices since 2011 by making it relatively simple for children to make purchases from the Google Play store without permission. As part of the settlement, Google will also be required to modify its billing practices. Continue reading Google Settles with FTC, Will Refund $19 Million to Customers

China Creates Own OS to Kick Dependence on U.S. Systems

China could have its own operating system in place by October to take on imported systems currently offered by tech giants such as Microsoft, Google and Apple. Initial reports suggest the system would first appear on desktop computers and then later expand to smartphones and other mobile devices. According to Ni Guangnan, who heads a development alliance created in March, the domestically built software could replace desktop operating systems within 1-2 years and mobile systems within 3-5 years. Continue reading China Creates Own OS to Kick Dependence on U.S. Systems

Hyperlapse: Produce Time-Lapse Videos with Instagram App

A new app from Instagram makes it possible for users to create high-quality time-lapse videos from their iPhones. Amateur photographers simply click a button to start and stop recording, and then use a single slider to adjust the speed of the frames. The new app relies on data from the smartphone’s built-in gyroscope to perform the image processing, making the videos appear less shaky. Hyperlapse is currently available on iOS, while an Android version is being planned. Continue reading Hyperlapse: Produce Time-Lapse Videos with Instagram App

Rockbot: Universal Music Invests in Social Jukebox Service

Universal Music Group, largest of the major music labels, just closed an investment deal with Rockbot, a virtual jukebox service that provides music to bars, restaurants and other locations. Through Rockbot, businesses can play licensed music while customers use a mobile app to check in and interact with the songs. One perk is the ability for customers to vote on which music will be played. Rockbot expects to use the new funding to expand its reach throughout the U.S. Continue reading Rockbot: Universal Music Invests in Social Jukebox Service

Facebook Hires WaveGroup Sound as In-House Design Team

Facebook has hired the team behind WaveGroup Sound, a California-based company that specializes in audio production for games. The company has produced tracks for “Guitar Hero,” “Rock Band” and “Dance Dance Revolution,” and has also produced sound for a variety of startups, hardware devices and mobile apps. The WaveGroup team will serve as the full-time in-house sound design team for Facebook. The group is expected to focus on sound for Facebook’s external apps. Continue reading Facebook Hires WaveGroup Sound as In-House Design Team

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