Google Gives Developers An Early Look at Android O

Google today announced the first preview of Android O, the unnamed next version of its core mobile operating system. This early version of Android O brings with it a handful of new features that clearly target developers and device makers more so than end users. The primary consumer-facing function is a picture-in-picture viewer for Android phones (this feature is already available to Android tablets). Developers will be able to take advantage of a new background limiter, which can control how much power apps are allowed to consume when running in the background. Android O takes a new stab a notifications with what it calls notification channels. These will let users manage which types of notifications are allowed from individual apps, including new visual groupings that make it easier to see what’s going on. The new Autofill API will let developers of apps such as password managers choose autofill defaults across keyboards. Adaptive icons for the home screen will automatically change based on system preferences so they can adapt to different phones and user interfaces. Android O adds new support for Bluetooth audio codecs, such as Sony’s LDAC codec. Other features include: in-app pinning of shortcuts and widgets; support for Wi-Fi Aware; XML fonts; wide-gamut color apps; new WebView APIs; expanded accessibility options; improved support for multiple displays; and changes to the MediaPlayer, including new support for the MPEG2_TS codec for media streaming. Developers can install this first Android O preview on their Pixel, Pixel XL, Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X, Pixel C, and Nexus Player, but will have to do so manually via their computer. Google says Android O will see at least one more developer preview before the company releases a consumer beta of the operating system. Google didn’t suggest when the final version of Android O might be ready, but it typically releases new Android operating systems in the fall.

Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News

Samsung Smart Assistant Bixby To Arrive with Galaxy S8

When Samsung launches its next flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S8, later this spring, it will also start rolling out the first applications to work with its new intelligent digital assistant, Bixby.

Bixby will be “fundamentally different from other voice agents or assistants in the market,” Injong Rhee, executive vice president and head of research and development for Samsung’s software and services division (pictured above), said in a blog post yesterday.

After last year’s $5 billion-plus loss on the Galaxy Note 7, a smartphone prone to overheating and fires, Samsung could probably use a solid product success. Bixby could provide one way for the company to differentiate its artificial intelligence capabilities from competitors like Apple’s Siri and Google Assistant.

Rhee noted that Bixby will eventually be added to all of Samsung’s appliances, including TVs, washers, dryers, refrigerators, security cameras and smart-home devices.

Machines that ‘Adapt to Us’

Bixby will provide users with a “deeper experience” than those offered by other digital assistants because it is complete, context aware and cognitively tolerant, according to Rhee.

That means it can handle any task normally enabled by touch commands, work seamlessly across different interaction modes and understand voice commands given in many different ways. Those capabilities will help address the problem of today’s devices becoming increasingly difficult to operate and understand, Rhee said.

“Technology is supposed to make life easier, but as the capabilities of machines such as smartphones, PCs, home appliances and IoT devices become more diverse, the interfaces on these devices are becoming too complicated for users to take advantage of many of these functions conveniently,” he said. “Samsung has a conceptually new philosophy to the problem: instead of humans learning how the machine interacts with the world (a reflection of the abilities of designers), it is the machine that needs to learn and…
Source: Mobile Tech Today

Girding Up for a Potential Net Neutrality Fight

Some tech companies are gearing up for a fight over Obama-era rules that prohibit broadband providers from treating some web services — ahem, their own — better than rival services.

These rules made the Federal Communications Commission a tough overseer of telecom.

But the new FCC chairman, appointed by President Donald Trump, is a fierce critic of these rules, which are known as net neutrality. The regulation bars broadband providers from blocking or slowing down websites and from charging internet companies like Netflix or Hulu for faster access to customers, a practice known as “paid prioritization.” It also confers broader powers upon the FCC to investigate companies’ practices.

It’s widely expected that Congress or the FCC will undo or weaken these rules, though no formal plan is on the table yet.

Vimeo, a New York-based video sharing site that is part of billionaire media mogul Barry Diller’s IAC/InterActiveCorp, is one of the most vocal proponents of net neutrality. Vimeo’s general counsel, Michael Cheah, spoke with The Associated Press recently about what the company sees coming. Questions and answers have been edited for clarity and length.

Q: Why are you defending rules before anyone has made a move against them?

A: We wanted to show our support. If and when it does become a point under challenge, we will help organize.

Q: What response do you expect from the tech community?

A: When people have something to lose, you get more people on board. You have a greater incentive for people to dig in and fight this. From private conservations I’ve had, there are companies big and small that do care about this. They are waiting to act.

Q: Net neutrality got a lot of public support in 2014. Do you expect similar support when immigration, health care and other issues are already making headlines?

A: Is this a top-tier issue?…
Source: Mobile Tech Today

Apple Updates iPad Line and Launches Red iPhone 7

Apple has updated its iPad line, dropping the “Air” branding as it boosts the specs on its mid-tier product. The new hardware launches alongside another color for the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, and an unusually timed announcement of a new video app, Clips.

Starting at [$329] for a 32GB model with wifi only, and rising to [$459]for a 128GB model with 4G, the new iPad, an update to the iPad Air 2, solidifies Apple’s intentions to split the line into three: an expensive iPad Pro, available in two sizes, for those needing a laptop replacement; a cheap iPad mini for those needing a small portable tablet; and the iPad sitting in between the two.

The new iPad sees its innards bumped from an A8X chip to the A9, previously used in the iPhones 6S and SE. The more-powerful A9X chip, introduced for the two sizes of iPad Pro, remains exclusive to that product line. Following the lead of the Mac lineup, Apple also dropped the “Air” branding from the series.

Other than the speed boost, most features in the iPad remain untouched: the device has the same camera specs as its predecessor, the same screen specs and the same rated battery life. But the differences between the iPad Pro and iPad are more stark, particularly in form factor: the retention of the eight megapixel camera means the new iPad doesn’t have the unsightly camera nubbin that graces its more expensive sibling. Perhaps not coincidentally, Apple’s tagline for the product is “Flat-out fun.”

Alongside the iPad, Apple also announced a new color, red, for its iPhone 7 devices. Some of the proceeds from sales of the device, alongside other red products sold by Apple, will go to supporting the Product Red initiative to fight HIV and Aids. The company has also doubled the storage…
Source: Mobile Tech Today

No Electronics on Some U.S.-Bound Jets from Mideast, Africa

The U.S. government is ordering passengers on nonstop, U.S.-bound flights from a handful of mostly Middle Eastern and North African countries to pack electronic devices other than cellphones in their checked baggage.

Senior Trump administration officials said that starting Tuesday morning airlines flying directly to the United States from 10 airports in eight countries could allow only cellphones and smartphones in carry-on bags for U.S.-bound flights. Other electronics, including laptops and tablets, will be indefinitely banned from the passenger cabin.

The officials said the airlines were to have 96 hours to implement the security order or face being barred from flying to the United States. The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the security ban despite President Donald Trump’s repeated insistence that anonymous source should not be trusted.

The electronics ban affects flights from international airports in Amman, Jordan; Kuwait City, Kuwait; Cairo; Istanbul; Jeddah and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; Casablanca, Morocco; Doha, Qatar; and Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates. About 50 flights a day, all on foreign carriers, will be impacted. The officials said no U.S.-based airlines have non-stop flights from those cities to the United States.

The officials said the decision was prompted by “evaluated intelligence” about ongoing potential threats to airplanes bound for the United States. The officials would not discuss the timing of the intelligence or if any particular terror group is thought to be planning an attack.

The ban would affect laptops, iPads, cameras and most other electronics. Royal Jordanian Airlines tweeted about the ban Monday, telling passengers that medical devices would also be allowed onboard with passengers.

Details of the ban were first disclosed by Royal Jordanian and the official news agency of Saudi Arabia.

In its statement, Royal Jordanian said the electronics ban would affect its flights to New York, Chicago, Detroit and Montreal.

Source: Mobile Tech Today

Google Search App Gains Tappable Shortcuts

Google today said an update to its mobile search app should make it quicker and easier to find basic information via tappable shortcuts that are positioned underneath the search box. The shortcuts let people perform instant searches for a variety of items, including entertainment, sports, weather, food, news, and more. The shortcuts appear on the home screen of the Google search app on Android and iOS devices, as well as in mobile browsers. Google says Android users will have access to more shortcuts, such as flights, currency converters, attractions, hotels, and others. People will be able to customize the shortcuts and results based on their preferences. Google says it will automatically add tappable search shortcuts for big and current events as they come and go. Google Search is free to download from the Google Play Store and the iTunes App Store.

Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News

PeerApp Using MTN for Faster Mobile Content, Higher Quality

Johannesburg, South Africa — March 21, 2017 — PeerApp, a leading global provider of local content-delivery solutions , which cuts network costs and boosts customer satisfaction for mobile, telco and cable operators, today announced that South Africa-based multinational mobile operator, MTN Group, has chosen PeerApp’s award-winning local content delivery solution for its operations in various geographic regions.

With mobile consumption of media and entertainment growing in leaps and bounds, MNOs are in need of solutions that can keep up with the demand for real-time mobile media and entertainment. The PeerApp solution accelerates content delivery, bringing content close to vast numbers of subscribers, offloading the network and maintaining high-quality content delivery.

MTN says PeerApp was selected following thorough testing, and based on its market leading status as well as its proven technology.

“We have seen an increase in subscribers acquiring smart mobile devices, and in the consumption of video and other heavy content. The PeerApp solution will optimize the customer broadband experience on the MTN network. By utilizing this solution, MTN is enabling customers to download content faster, thus improving the customer experience and network efficiencies,” says Navi Naidoo, Network Technology General Manager at MTN Group.

The PeerApp approach improves subscriber Quality of Experience (QoE) by eliminating buffering and stalls, simultaneously increasing operational efficiency and opening service delivery and monetization opportunities for mobile network operators.

“We see a trend where subscribers flock to the operator who can deliver video content with good QoE,” Kiran Pande, RVP Sales of PeerApp, affirmed. “PeerApp gives MNOs a competitive advantage as it keeps up with the exploding demand for mobile content delivery.”

About PeerApp Ltd.

PeerApp cuts network costs and boosts customer satisfaction for Communication Service Providers (CSPs) and enterprise networks. Our broad suite of solutions spans Content Localization and Caching, Live Streaming Delivery, Application and Data Acceleration, Smart Traffic Management,…
Source: Mobile Tech Today

Apple's New Clips App Offers a Fun Way to Create Videos

Apple today announced Clips, an app for the iPhone and iPad that lets people piece together photos, videos, and music for sharing on social networks. One of the core features is called Live Titles, which lets people create animated captions by using their voice, rather than typing. Clips includes effects such as comic book filters, speech bubbles, shapes, and animated posters to add personality to videos. Apple is pitching the app as an easy-to-use alternative to iMovie. It doesn’t require timelines, tracks, or complicated editing tools. Instead, users need only touch a single button to shoot photos or videos from within the app, or pull content directly from the camera roll. Dozens of music soundtracks are included and they will automatically adjust to match the length of the video clip. Apple says videos created in the Clips app can be shared directly to most social networks, such as Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Vimeo, and others. Clips bakes in support for Apple’s own iMessage, as well, and will automatically suggest sharing options based on the people who appear in the videos. Clips will be available for free to most iPhones and iPads in April.

Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News

Elretron wants you take you back in time

Elretron wants you take you back in time
Pah, modern technology. Who needs that eh? The guys at Elretron want you to take a journey back to the age of typewriters, when we had mechanical keyboards that went “Clack, Clack, Clack”.

They’re just about to put their idea on Kickstarter and pricing is said to be $79 for an earlybird buyer or $99 for a normal buyer. The retro vintage mechanical keyboards will be launched on the site in April with the “Penna” being their first product. It features a macro functionality, “sentence memory”, a 5-device Bluetooth memory and it’ll run for 6 months on 2 AA batteries.

The plan is to launch 4 colours – matt black, baby pink, olive green and pure white. There will also be two types of keycaps – chrome or diamond-shaped ones. There’s even a bar on the side of the keyboard to record macros and words.

Elretron tell us..

Ever seen slim and glittering mobile phone or tablets with a keyboard that fits the desk perfectly?

Probably not. We’ve been waiting long for a beautiful keyboard, and when we couldn’t any more, we started this project to make what we wanted

More beautiful design than even mobile phone itself, design that embraces retro styling, the feeling of mechanical keyboard, keycaps to reduce typos dramatically, multipairing for many devices, and even availability of macro for setting keys at your will,

We, ELRETRON INC, are finally introducing PENNA, our dream come true that took three years in the making

Elretron wants you take you back in time

Interesting idea this, and you can see how a tablet or handset can be propped up in the device, but I’d love to know if this is enough to tempt you away from your ultra-mobile swiping and on-screen keyboard-pressing. In the office it would look all-kinds of cool though 🙂

Head to the Elretron website for more detail or to subscribe for updates.

The post Elretron wants you take you back in time is original content from Coolsmartphone. If you see it on another news website, please let us know.


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    Source: News

  • Apple Improves Storage Options for iPhone SE

    Apple today gave the iPhone SE a modest update thanks to improved storage capacities. Beginning this week, the iPhone SE will be available in 32 GB and 128 GB versions. These replace the 16 GB and 64 GB models. The refreshed 32 GB iPhone SE starts at $399 and will be available online and in stores starting March 24. Other than the storage boost, the iPhone SE’s other specs remain unchanged. Apple first released the iPhone SE about this same time last year. It has a 4-inch display and relies on the same design Apple used for the 2012 iPhone 5 and 2013 iPhone 5s.

    Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News