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Samsung Pay has been in customers’ hands for a while now, including Verizon customers that thought it might not ever come to the carrier. And there have been various promotions offering free stuff to sign up for the service. The latest is courtesy of Samsung and is open to everyone that can use the service.
If you have a Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 edge, S6 edge+, or Note 5, register for a Samsung Pay account and add a bank card to become eligible for a Samsung wireless charging pad. Then hit the source link to start the process of getting one for free! The deal is limited to 200,000 chargers and ends on November 8th, so you better hurry!
Unfortunately, you probably won’t get your charger immediately. It seems that those who participated in similar promotions before are still waiting on their chargers since they’re currently backordered. And if you’ve already gotten one, you aren’t eligible this time around.
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Apple’s second application for Android happens to be far more useful than its first. Move to iOS is an app that assists in moving away from Android, so you can imagine that a lot of Android fans didn’t have particularly positive feelings about it. But this one is pretty good.
Beats Pill+ is an app to control the Beats Pill+ speaker, though you probably guessed that. It has some cool features, like an amplify mode for two speakers to play the same audio, and a stereo mode so two speakers play their respective channels. It also allows another person to connect to the speaker and play music with you.
Little extras are a charge indicator and the ability to rename the speaker. Despite the iOS user interface, it looks to be a pretty decent app. There may be some compatibility issues that need to be fixed, but if you have one of these speakers, hit the source link to download the companion app!
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Bluetooth earphones are a new thing for me. I never really thought about it, but the concept of having no cords to get tangled in while jogging or doing chores sounds absolutely fantastic. But they have had significant drawbacks in the past, like battery life and weight. How do a budget pair of earphones stack up these days?
Bluetooth version: 4.1
Supported profile: Headset, Hands-free, A2DP, AVRCP, Apt-X
Battery life: 7-8 hours
Where to buy: Inateck, Amazon US ($10 off with 5QQAWHVN), Amazon UK (£5 off with 99XZX57W)
These Inateck BH1001 earphones are made up of two large earbuds and a short cable in between, with a controller on one side of the cable. The earbuds have magnets inside them, which is meant for a pretty cool feature I’ll talk about later. On the ends are double seal tips that come in two sizes. On one side is a small cover for the micro USB port.
The controller has a multi-function button that turns the earphones on and off — as well as other functions — right by a mic and a status LED. The other side has volume buttons, which adjust volume independently of your device volume. Long pressing them changes the track.
These Inateck BH1001 earphones are built fairly well. The earbuds are made entirely of plastic. The plastic is of decent quality, not fantastic but pretty good. This has the benefit of making the earphones really light, which is critical for comfort. There is no creaking or bending to speak of.
The wires are a bit thin, which may not be good for long term reliability, but they seem well built enough. All the buttons are nice and solid, and the micro USB port cover isn’t flimsy. For the price, I’m very impressed.
Did you expect sub-$40 Bluetooth earphones to sound good? No? Well, the Inateck BH1001 do. Once you get a good seal in your ears, the sound really is nice. The bass is surprisingly substantial and thumpy, and the mids and highs are very clear even at high volumes.
The balance of the sound, as with any budget audio product, could use some work. This isn’t an audiophile product, nor should you expect it to be for $33. But it’s far from bad, providing highs, mids, and lows without any one of those getting drowned out.
Overall the sound quality is plain good. I enjoyed listening to these earphones quite a lot.
As I’ve stated before, in-ear style earphones don’t fit very well in my ears. Yes, my ears are weird. But these fit pretty well and stay in my ears for fairly long periods of time! It takes a while to make a proper seal for proper sound and fitment, but once they’re in, they stay in. The plastic construction keeps them lightweight, which means they don’t feel particularly heavy in your ears.
The cable is supposed to be behind your neck, which means it doesn’t pull on your ears either.
The rated battery life for the BH1001 is 7-8 hours, depending on where you look. And in my testing, it has lasted about as long as advertised. Considering many more expensive earphones advertise around the same battery figures, that’s plain impressive.
My testing was done at medium volumes, and blasting your music may lower battery life, but overall the battery life is very good.
One of my favorite features of these earphones is the magnetic ends. When you’re done listening to your music, take the earphones out and snap the ends together. They’ll stick together, becoming a necklace, and automatically pause the music. I love that feature.
The Inateck BH1001 also features a microphone for phone calls, but unfortunately it’s not so great. People hear me, but my voice isn’t all that clear. The sound is a bit muffled, probably because it’s a bit further back than it should be. But it works okay enough to be understood.
Included in the box is a surprisingly nice soft case with a zipper. It holds the earphones with space to spare, and even has a pocket for the extra ear tips and micro USB charging cable.
These Bluetooth earphones pretty much do it all. They’re very cheap, lightweight, sound good, have great battery life, and feature wireless (and no flaky connections either). The only issue is the subpar mic, but honestly, they’re great otherwise.
If you’re annoyed by your earphone wires constantly getting in the way and want something new on a budget, this may be perfect for you.
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There are plenty of console and PC video games that make the transition into mobile apps in some form. We’ve seen companion apps, somewhat related games made for mobile (Fallout Shelter comes to mind), and even full spinoffs like Call of Duty. And in some form, Titanfall will be coming to mobile.
Game developer Respawn Entertainment has partnered with Nexon, a free-to-play publisher, and mobile developer Particle City to create a Titanfall-based game for iOS and Android, among others. It’ll likely be free with in-app payments, which is Nexon’s style. What kind of game it will be is unbeknownst to us. It could be a spinoff of the full game, or some card collection game. We hope it isn’t the latter.
The game will be launching sometime next year, so hopefully more details surface soon!
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Welcome back to our weekly Top 10 Android App Updates column, where we take a look at the most frequently upgraded apps for the week. We’ve found that one of the best ways to discover useful apps is to find the ones that are actually being updated by the developers rather than selecting the apps with the most installs. As in the past, we’re going to filter out minor updates for the super-popular apps that have over 10 million installs, but we’ll make exceptions for apps that have had significant updates. We hope you enjoy this weekly feature and that you discover some apps that end up being useful.
Skype - Version 6.8.0
What’s new in this version:
Add fun to your video messages by adding a video filter. Just tap on the filter icon on the lower left.
Get spooky with new ghostly Halloween emoticons and video message filters…. Mwahahahah!
Quickly send photos and files to the entire group by tapping on the corresponding icon in the group chat media bar.
Want to chat with a friend who isn’t in Skype? Invite your friends to join Skype from the contacts tab.
Snapseed - Version 2.1.0
What’s new in this version:
- RAW support
- Tap to hide controls on the main screen
- Zoom navigator doesn’t obscure any part of the image
- Filter name is displayed in title bar
- Exif data is now fully preserved
BetterBatteryStats - Version 2.1.0
What’s new in this version:
- Android Marshmallow Support
- New Artwork
- New responsive widget
- Optimized legacy widgets
- New version of the system app
- Numerous bugfixes
Amazon Music with Prime Music - Version 4.6.5
What’s new in this version:
- Amazon Music…now rollin’ with Android Auto support! Play favorites from Prime Music or your library on your commute using an elegant, car-optimized interface
- Prime Stations now appear in your search results – finding and discovering your new favorite Prime Station has never been easier
- Now get Prime Music search suggestions as you type, enabling you to quickly find and play music with the fewest number of taps
- Made performance improvements & fixed several bugs
Newegg Mobile- Version 4.0.0
What’s new in this version:
- Redesign Android App based on the latest design guidelines.
- Combine Android Phone App and Android Tablet App into one universal app.
Fleksy + GIF Keyboard – Version 7.0.4
What’s new in this version:
- All new Theme Builder! Design your own theme with an image or choose the background color(s) that your heart desires. You can also share them with your friends! Check it out (open on your device) ==> http://ift.tt/1GVVnKG
- New Badges for sharing Themes, GIFs, and Stickers
Photo Editor by Aviary - Version 4.2.1
What’s new in this version:
All new Enhance! Try out the new Hi-Def, Scenery, Food, Portrait and Night presets. Let us know what you think!
Many under the hood updates to improve performance and prepare for new features coming soon.
NBA 2015-16 - Version 6.01
What’s new in this version:
Redesign of the NBA app for easier navigation to top content, live scores and video
New NBA LEAGUE PASS subscription options including NBA SINGLE GAME
Improvements for NBA SINGLE GAME subscribers
ExDialer - V195
What’s new in this version:
Settings for swipe gesture action
Always display 3-dot menu button, on Android5.0+ devices (since on some new devices menu can’t be accessed)
Google Photos - Version 1.8.0
What’s new in this version:
- Now in more countries
- Hide a person from appearing under People. This also prevents events with that person from appearing in “Rediscover this day” cards in the Assistant.
- When viewing search results, pinch to zoom in and out.
- Spooky fast performance improvements and bug fixes.
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Google has a new app, and this one’s designed to help you hang out with your friends. Just in case you aren’t actually communicating with them.
The app is called “Who’s Down,” and, as it is appropriately titled, it will let you know when your friends are willing to hang out. The app, like so many of Google’s past endeavors, is invite-only right now, but you can download and install it if you really want to. It’s free.
As far as functionality goes, the app is simple enough: Toggle a switch and tell your friends that you’re able to hang out. The timer will last for three hours, and then after you do that you’ll be able to select from a series of options that show what you’re interested in doing. There will be a list that will show which of your friends are also down to hang out.
What do you think of Google’s newest app?
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Oh no! My Galaxy S6 is dying and I don’t have time to plug it into the wall. I’m away from walls with outlets or don’t want to be tied to a wall. I need to be using my phone. What the heck am I going to do?!?
If you have the TYLT Energi Sliding Power case, the decision would be easy: Slide on the 3400mAh power sleeve and you’re good to go. No walls necessary. No cables attached to power banks. You just slide on this bulky Power Case and you can keep using your phone without attachments and cables. Your phone charges while you use it, wherever you are. It’s brilliant.
TYLT offers the ENERGI Sliding Power case for several different phones, including the Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 edge (the S6 case comes with both S6 and S6 edge cases), Galaxy S5, Galaxy S4, and all the iPhone models since the iPhone 5. We tested the Galaxy S6 case and spoiler: It was awesome.
How it works
The TYLT ENERGI Sliding Power Case is two parts. The first is a simple “inner” case for your phone that is a dual-layer hard case with a soft coating on it. The buttons are all encased yet easily pressable. There are cutouts for all the ports, speaker, camera and IR blaster. One of my favorite parts about the case is that it’s very thin. I love cases that don’t add much bulk. Lastly, the case has slots on the side where the battery sleeve part of the case slides in.Click to view slideshow.
Part two of the ENERGI Slide Power case is the battery sleeve. Unlike the inner case portion, the battery sleeve is very bulky. I’m not dogging on the case here, because big batteries take up space. The battery sleeve for the Galaxy S6 contains a 3400mAh battery that is 1 1/3 larger than the Galaxy S6′s built-in battery. It can be charged on or off of the phone via Qi wireless charging or micro-USB. The power sleeve is 2.1 Amp quick charge capable of charging your Galaxy S6 up to 90% at a relatively quick charging rate.
I think the design of the battery sleeve is really well thought out. It slips onto inner case very tightly and there’s very little play, so the Galaxy S6 slides perfectly into the male micro-USB plug. There are two ways the battery sleeve can be charged: via a micro-USB port on the bottom or via Qi wireless charging. It can be charged with or without the phone, and it supports pass-through charging. So you put your phone in the case before you go to bed at night, plug in the case, and when you wake up in the morning, both your battery and phone will be charged. There’s a button on the back that can activate LEDs that indicate how much charge the battery sleeve has. When you want to charge your phone, holding the button down for a second begins the charging process. Lastly, the sleeve does cover the bottom-firing speaker on the Galaxy S6. Oh no! Well, TYLT thought of that and redirected the sound out to ports on the front of the phone, which seems more awesome than the bottom-firing speaker.
What I love
- CONVENIENCE. Most other power banks are probably not going to attach to your phone and will also require a cable in-between the battery and your phone. The ENERGI Sliding Power Case just slips on and you can continue to use your phone as usual. People probably won’t even know you’re charging your phone. They’ll just think your phone is HUGE.
- The inner case is very slim and very protective. Our Galaxy S6 has survived many falls with the protection of the dual layer hard case.
What I don’t like
- Colors. Other devices supported by the ENERGI Sliding power case have more colors options, but the Galaxy S6 case only comes in black. Boring.
- I’m disappointed by how the inner case has held up. The soft portion of the dual layer inner case seems to be quickly wearing off. Granted, this case has taken a beating — it’s been dropped multiple times over the month that we’ve been using it — but I think cases should last longer than a month. It’s still fully functional, but its appearance seems to be deteriorating.
- The battery sleeve can be difficult to slide off the inner case. At first, it was really hard, and we were searching the instructions to see if we were doing something wrong. Since then, we’ve either gotten better at our battery sleeve removal technique or it’s been broken in and gotten easier to take off. Maybe both.
- It’s pricey, but most TYLT Products are. The ENERGI Sliding Power Case is $79.99. There are cheaper battery cases out there for that Galaxy S6, but not many have great ratings.
The bottom line
If I were to give TYLT ENERGI Sliding Power case a rating from 1 to 5, with 5 being the best, I would give it a 4.5. The design it great and it works great. I’m knocking a half point off because the inner case’s appearance is going south, but you’re probably the only one that will notice that.
Functionally, everything is there, and I’m super impressed with it. The ENERGI Sliding Power Case is a CTIA-certified battery and comes with a 1-year warranty. Its convenience factor is through the roof, and I wish I had a case like this for my Nexus 6. I do wish the price was a bit lower and it had some different colors.
What are your thoughts on the ENERGI Sliding case? Do you have one and think it’s awesome? Thinking about buying one? Think it’s overpriced? Let us know your thoughts and questions by commenting below.
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When the ZTE Axon Pro launched earlier this year, it did so with a price tag of $449.98. Amazon recently discounted the phone to $400, but today you can get it for even less.
The ZTE Axon Pro is currently an Amazon Lightning Deal that’ll run through 1:00 pm PT/4:00 pm ET, or until all of the stock is claimed. During that time, the Phthalo Blue and Chromium Silver models of the 32GB Axon Pro are available for $319.98, $80 off Amazon’s normal asking price.
As of this writing, 20 percent of the Phthalo Blue stock has been snapped up, while only 7 percent of the Chromium Silver version has been sold.
The ZTE Axon Pro is one of the many recent “affordable flagship” smartphones that’ve launched lately. It boasts a 5.5-inch 2560×1440 display, Snapdragon 810, 13-megapixel and 2-megapixel rear cameras, an 8-megapixel front camera, a 3000mAh battery, and Android 5.1.1. All of those goodies are wrapped in a metal body. Given all of those features, the Axon Pro seems like a pretty good deal at $320.
If you want to take advantage of this Amazon Lightning Deal, navigate your mouse to the Amazon link below and get to clickin’.
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- ARDX Arduino Starter Kit
- Arduino Step-by-Step ‘Your Guide to the Internet of Things’ Course
- Arduino ‘Make a Remote-Controlled Car’ Course
- Beginning Arduino ‘Make Your Own Environment Monitor System’ Course
- ARDX Arduino Starter Kit The ARDX Arduino Starter Kit pairs a detailed, illustrated guide with all the parts you need to build your own circuits. Perfect for beginners, this kit requires no experience and teaches you to use Arduino to control lights, buzzers, and more. Once you master the basics of Arduino, you can control motors on any device you dream up—from robots, to mood lights, to self-playing instruments, and beyond. Features:
- No soldering or electronics background required
- Straight forward instructions, including diagrams & troubleshooting tips
- Additional instructions for taking your projects to the next level
- 13 circuits included, each with a breadboard layout
- Arduino Uno
- Arduino Step-by-Step ‘Your Guide to the Internet of Things’ Course Feed your interest in electronic design with this 19 hour course on basic Arduino concepts. Get started on your personal electronic projects with your newfound knowledge of Arduino hardware and programming environment upon completion of this course. Features:
- Over 99 lectures and 19 hours of content
- Program in the Arduino prototyping platform
- Understand the principles of programming micro-controllers
- Explore basic principles in electronics design
- Study and use many types of sensors and components
- Connect your Arduino to the Internet for reporting and controlling
- Use tools to build electronic devices
- Arduino ‘Make a Remote-Controlled Car’ Course Take your Arduino skills to the next level, and build something awesome in the process.…
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If you’re like us, it’s never too late to buy a good Android phone. Google has two new Nexus phones that are fairly cheap, but we’re certain that quite a few of you will jump at the opportunity to get your hands on the original Nexus 5 at a steep discount. The phone has been officially discontinued, but an eBay seller has limited stock of the Nexus 5 and is selling the phone for a mere $175.
For those who don’t remember, the Nexus 5 features a 2.26GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM, 16 or 32GB of storage, a 4.95-inch 1080p IPS display, 8-megapixel camera and a 2,300mAh battery. In late 2015, it would be considered a mid-range device, but its stock Android build and clean design make it a must-have to the true Android fanboy.
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During HTC’s quarterly earning call, the company stated that it will no longer be providing earnings guidance for following quarters in an effort to avoid the “side effects.” For those who don’t know, most companies provide earnings guidance to give investors a vague idea of what the company plans to make the following quarter. While HTC has all the information it needs to project how much money it will spend and how much it will bring in form smartphone sales, the company has failed to meet its guidance numbers recently, resulting in significant selloff of its stocks once the actual earnings are announced.
By not providing earnings guidance, HTC hopes to bring a little more stability to its stock price while it still works to reduce its overhead expenses and find a product that can actually have a positive impact on its bottom line. HTC hasn’t indicated how long it plans to keep investors in the dark, but we have a feeling that it will resume issuing quarterly guidance if it actually sees evidence that its fortunes have turned around. HTC has stated that the HTC One A9 will likely result in an earnings increase over Q4 of 2014, but without any guidance from HTC, it’s impossible to know what that increase may be.
On HTC investor call after huge 3Q loss, company declines to give 4Q guidance, says will not give guidance anymore
— Eva Dou (@evadou) October 30, 2015
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Mobile is the future, and Google has pursued both Android and Chrome OS as mobile platforms for a while now. Chromebooks still haven’t been doing well, accounting for 3% of all PCs purchased, but Android has been excelling. The strategy of using a platform for apps seems to be working a lot better than bringing apps to the web.
Google might be giving up on Chrome as a platform soon, as the company is planning to fold Chrome OS into Android. Lately Google has been bringing Android apps to Chrome OS, and it has even released a Pixel product running Android instead of Chrome OS. The company may be giving up on the platform, to a degree.
Google has been working on a new version of Android that is basically a combination of Android and Chrome OS to run on PCs for the last two years. It will be shown off next year, but won’t be ready until 2017.
While this is a controversial decision, I think it’s for the best. Real apps have shown their superiority to web apps outside of compatibility, and Android is just a more powerful platform for anything more than web browsing. What do you think of this decision? Will it help Google and Android, or is Chrome OS being wrongfully killed off? Let us know in the comments!
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“Sprint beats all national carriers with unlimited data for $20/month.” That’s the headline Sprint is using for this announcement, but the wording “unlimited data” is quite a stretch. The plan does indeed offer unlimited data, but only 1GB of that will be LTE. The rest will be 2G data, which we all know sucks.
Though many carriers do this and have done this for years, it’s still purposefully misleading for customers who don’t read the fine print. If you see this deal, or any like it, remember to read the fine print and ignore it if you need significant amounts of data.
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Welcome back to Android Gaming Weekly, our weekly recap of new game releases. We still plan to cover upcoming releases and games we’re playing, but this column is dedicated to new games that you can start playing right now. Check out our top picks and let us know in the comments section if you have any suggestions for next week’s post.
Templar Battleforce RPG
Description: Templar Battleforce is an addictive mix of strategic combat and army building with the precision gameplay of RPGs. Step into a Leviathan mech and lead the Templar Knights in battle against fierce Xenos.
Description: In Sanitarium you play an amnesiac thrust into a morbid, really creepy universe. After a car accident you wake up to find that instead of lying in a hospital, you’re in an asylum with your head wrapped in bandages.
Boxy the Box
Description: Be anything you want to be! (as long as its a box.) Go anywhere you want to go! (Within the restricted lanes of travel.) Fall down holes! Press buttons! Look at colours!
KOI – Journey of Purity
Description: Presented by an independent game development team in China, Koi takes you on a creative journey of growth with its fresh and heart-warming style. With brilliant storyline embedded in each stage, Koi makes use of elements of puzzle solving, growth and collection.
Viva Sancho Villa
Description: Viva Sancho Villa is a Mexican hack & slash action adventure platformer, where you play as the revolutionary hero Sancho Villa! Using your bonecrushing machete and legendary revolvers, liberate Magico’s land from the corrupted forces of evil in this revolutionary saga of war and folklore.
Beneath The Lighthouse
Description: Beneath the lighthouse is a serene puzzle action game about a boy in search of his lost Grandpa. Your journey will take you through mysterious mechanical wheels that lay beneath the lighthouse!
The Walking Dead No Man’s Land
Description: Join Daryl Dixon in the fight against the flesh-hungry walkers. Do you have what it takes to stay alive? The Walking Dead: No Man’s Land is a thrilling, action-packed RPG game where tactical choices make a difference between life and death.
Description: LandFort features a very challenging physics-based gameplay that will keep you entertained for many hours. Each battle requires strategic thinking and skills to become victorious.
Proximity 3D Free
Description: Proximity 3D is a highly addictive turn-based strategy game with a simple but distinctive concept. It is a game with numbered tiles that will raise up your tension!
Description: Join our heroes Blue, Unicorn, Ghost, Frog and even Dead Bird and avoid obstacles like deadly spikes, dastardly dart shooters, and even flying ninja stars. Collect as many coins as possible on your way to some seriously mind-blowing high scores. Aim for the stars or pop trying!
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