Author: Gary Thayer, Editor

Google Pixel 2 features overview & early Pixel 2 reviews roundup

Google’s new Pixel 2 and 2 XL is here — the company has unveiled its new Android phones, along with several phone accessories, new Google Home products and a new Pixelbook Chromebook. So far, reviewers are pretty impressed with the new Pixels, with some even saying that they raise the bar for top-tier phones. We’ve put together a roundup of initial hands-on Pixel 2 reviews from top tech sites, but let’s start off with a quick summary of the Pixel 2 specs and features. Google Pixel 2 features overview The Pixel 2 ($649+) looks almost identical to last year’s...

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Week in Mobile, Oct. 8: iPhone 8 problems, Google Pixel 2, new Echos, more

We’ve teamed up with Appcelerator to bring you a weekly quick read of the most important mobile apps news and other mobile technology news stories. In this week’s mobile news roundup we cover Google’s new Pixel 2 phones & smart Home stereo line, iPhone 8 problems, new Amazon Echos, Levi’s smart jacket for bikers or walkers, MLB AR, shrinking GPS error margins, and more. Posts below are from Appcelerator (APP) and MobileVillage (MV). Former Intel CEO Paul Otellini passes at 66 Former Intel CEO Paul Otellini passed away in his sleep on Tuesday night at age 66, just a few years after...

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Week in Mobile, Sept. 26: iOS 11, Google buys into HTC, 3D shopping, more

We’ve teamed up with Appcelerator to bring you a weekly quick read of the most important mobile apps news and other mobile technology news stories. In this week’s mobile news roundup we cover iOS 11 features, the Apple Watch 3 WiFi problem, Google’s HTC buy, the upcoming Google Pixel 2 release & Pixel 2 photos, Google Daydream 2 VR, 3D shopping AR, Amazon Alexa glasses rumor and more. Posts below are from Appcelerator (APP) and MobileVillage (MV). Google buys part of HTC for $1.1 billion Google announced a few days ago that it’s acquiring a $1.1 billion part of HTC’s...

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Week in Mobile, Sept. 17: iPhone AR apps, Mi Mix 2, foldable Note phone, more

We’ve teamed up with Appcelerator to bring you a weekly quick read of the most important mobile apps news and other mobile technology news stories. In this week’s mobile news roundup we cover iPhone AR apps using ARKit, AR camera apps, the new LTE Apple Watch 3, Xiaomi’s Mi Mix 2, Samsung foldable phone rumor, Facebook Bonfire, and more. Posts below are from Appcelerator (APP) and MobileVillage (MV). Beyond iPhones: ARKit, LTE Apple Watch 3, Apple TV MobileVillage already covered Apple’s new iPhone 8, 8 Plus and iPhone X (pronounced “Ten”) with a summary of specs and iPhone hands-on roundup....

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iPhone X, 8 Plus & iPhone 8 hands on first reviews roundup

Don’t have time to read all of the iPhone 8 hands on reviews or iPhone X hands on reviews from this week’s launch event at the new Apple campus? You’re in luck, because we’ve culled the best of the web’s first-impression reviews for the iPhone 8, 8 Plus and iPhone X here. To read any of the full iPhone X or iPhone 8 hands on reviews, just click the link in each title. iPhone 8 Plus & iPhone 8 hands on reviews Ars Technica: The Qi flows through this one “The back is made of glass now—meaning that fingerprint smudges were...

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Apple’s new iPhone X vs iPhone 8 & iPhone 8 Plus: Which is right for you?

In the first large media event held at its new spaceship-like headquarters today, Apple unveiled what you already knew was coming — if you followed the many rumors. The iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, new iPhone X (pronounced iPhone Ten), Apple Watch 3, AirPower wireless charging pad, and 4K Apple TV were all shown off at the Steve Jobs Theater in Apple Park, which is still under final construction. But with three new iPhones, which is right for you? Here, we look at the iPhone 8 vs 8 Plus vs iPhone X, and how they’re different from the 7...

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Samsung Galaxy Note 8 reviews roundup: Powerful first impressions

Samsung Galaxy Note 8 reviews & specs roundup: The first Galaxy Note 8 reviews are in, and Samsung’s newest Galaxy phone is already a hit. But can it fend off the upcoming iPhone 8 Plus (due for a mid September release) or will compete with the less expensive Galaxy S8 Plus? We have the Galaxy Note 8 reviews and specs for you below to decide if you want to take the plunge. Galaxy Note 8 specs & features The Galaxy Note 8 features a giant 6.3″ Quad HD+ Super AMOLED Infinity display, Android 7.1.1 Nougat (which Samsung will upgrade...

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City launches mobile tech trial to prevent traffic collisions

Can mobile tech prevent collisions between vehicles and pedestrians? South Australia thinks so. Its capital city of Adelaide has launched a test rollout of an early collision warning system powered by mobile apps for drivers and pedestrians. You’ve probably heard of P2P (peer-to-peer) and M2M (machine-to-machine) technologies. Enter V2V (vehicle-to-vehicle) and V2P (vehicle-to-pedestrian) technology–each of which leverage 4G mobile networks and apps to warn drivers, cyclists, or even pedestrians of oncoming hazards. How collision warning apps work So far, V2V has been shown to prevent collisions between cars and motorcycles. (See adjacent photos and the video below this story.) With...

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Bluetooth mesh networks will help create smart buildings & cities

Watch out, Wi-Fi—because Bluetooth mesh networks are here. Although they won’t replace our Wi-Fi hotspots, Bluetooth networks will soon be able to connect more than just your smartphones with your headphones or car. They’ll also be able to turn Bluetooth-ready devices into vast wireless networks for creating smart buildings and smart cities. It was 18 years ago that the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) launched the Bluetooth standard for wirelessly connecting our devices. Now, the 32,000-member Bluetooth SIG brings us Bluetooth mesh networking, which allows vast, low-power wireless networks to be created between many Bluetooth LE (Low Energy) devices including...

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Kika Emoji Keyboard app gets GIPHY gifs, company sees big growth

Kika’s popular Emoji Keyboard app has just gotten more fun. The Emoji Keyboard app is adding animated GIF images from GIPHY, the world’s largest GIF search engine. This means that Kika users will get a huge, searchable library of animated images at their fingertips, for sharing with friends by direct message or in any social apps. The Kika Emoji Keyboard app was awarded Google’s Best of 2016 and Top Developer in 2015, and has been ranked a top productivity app in more than 77 countries with 300 million downloads. The app is currently nominated in the 2017 Mobile Star Awards. GIPHY will be the main provider of...

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China smartphone brands go big in China & India; Apple falls

China smartphone giant Huawei has again leaped past Oppo as the top smartphone company in China, while Apple saw its fifth straight quarter of falling sales in the world’s hottest smartphone market. Though Oppo remains popular in China, Huawei reclaimed its previous lead by riding high on its Honor smartphone series. Overall, China smartphone sales slowed to just one percent year-on-year growth in the first quarter (Q1) of 2017, with only 104.1 million smartphones shipped, according to International Data Corp. (IDC). This is in part due to high inventory from the previous quarter, and only a few major smartphone launches: most notably...

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2018 GDPR compliance deadline risks & strategies

With just over a year left to prepare for the European Union’s May 2018 General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR), enterprises are skeptical of their ability to meet GDPR compliance requirements in the face major IT security risks. That’s the finding of a new global survey of more than 4,200 IT or security professionals. The GDPR concerns both companies in the EU and any companies processing the personal data of subjects residing in the EU. It requires these companies to define privacy policies, obtain consent for legitimate usage of personal data, and to ensure companies are taking steps to mitigate...

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Holo’s hologram app puts celebrities in your room, or anywhere

Holograms aren’t just the stuff of Star Wars fantasies — they’re here now, and they may soon be everywhere. At the Game Developers Conference this month, attendees were greeted with a hologram of astronaut Buzz Aldrin (7-second video is below). The hologram was created by the startup 8i, which wants celebrities and ordinary folks to create and share hologram experiences. Last month the company announced its “Holo” hologram app, which is now available in beta and set for official release later this year. How Holo’s hologram app works Holo will feature holographic content from media partners who will pay...

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MWC news wrap: The best 2017 new phones, tablets & more

If you missed the news from last week’s big Mobile World Congress show, you’ll find it all right here. Thanks to the extensive coverage of MWC by CNET, Engadget and others, here we’ve rounded up for you all the hot 2017 new phones, tablets, and other announcements in one quick skim. LG, Huawei & Sony flaunt new flagships Thinner bezels, bigger displays, and faster processors. Those are just a few of the bragging points for the 2017 new phones shown off at MWC. Among the higher-end smartphones unveiled are the LG G6 (see previews on CNET and Engadget), Huawei P10 /...

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Hospital apps & in-room tech empowers patients

With just a tap on an iPad from their beds, patients at the new Jacobs Medical Center at University of California San Diego can control their room temperature or lighting, choose their entertainment, connect with family, and even access their medical records and care staff bios. These new mobile hospital apps aim to empower patients and relieve busy medical staff. “We hope that feeling in control will aid in the healing process,” says Thomas J. Savides, MD, Chief Experience Officer at UCSD Health. “Part of this is allowing patients to see portions of their electronic medical record to help them understand their progress...

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Top brands fail on mobile & web customer engagement

Many big e-commerce brands are failing to truly engage with today’s increasingly mobile and global customers, says a new report. Almost none of the UK’s top e-commerce brands deliver personalized customer engagement in their mobile apps, and most are wasting huge opportunities to grow their mobile channel and engage with users–especially mobile savvy millennials. The report, which focuses on three key channels (email, mobile apps and social media), reveals that relatively few of the UK’s top 50 e-commerce companies are taking user preferences, personalization and optimization across devices as seriously as they should. The report is based on a...

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Survey: We want mobile payments, but don’t trust them yet

Most consumers are more excited to adopt mobile payments than retail or service businesses realize, according to a global survey of 2,000 consumers and 300 executives conducted in late 2016 by IT services provider NTT Data. But companies must do more to ease their security concerns if adoption is to become widespread. The new “Future of Money” study examines trends in cash usage and electronic payments worldwide. The results suggest companies aren’t moving quickly enough to offer the secure mobile payment options consumers want. The study was carried out in partnership with Ingenico ePayments, Oxford Economics, and Charney Research, Clashing mobile...

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2016 BF, Cyber Week sales spur mobile shopping records

This year’s Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Cyber Week sales frenzy spurred record-breaking numbers of online and mobile shoppers, according to new reports. And we’ll likely see strong online sales continue until at least Christmas–thanks to more retailer promotions and more online shoppers. For the holiday season to date, US shoppers have spent $29.7 billion online–a 12-percent increase over the same time last year, reports consumer behavior analyst comScore. Cyber Monday desktop sales topped $2.67 billion–up 17% from last year and the biggest online spending day in history. This year’s Cyber Monday (the Monday after the US Thanksgiving holiday weekend) is only the second day ever to...

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Facebook bots & in-room assistants: Hotel apps at your service

Today, more tech-savvy hotel guests are looking for easy ways to obtain information without bothering hotel staff. And hotels are finding ways to meet this need. InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), for example, is trialing new tech to improve both the guest experience and service efficiency. This year IHG launched trials of a smart Facebook Messenger app or “bot”, as well as in-room Amazon Echo assistant. The Facebook Messenger Bot and Echo services aim to help customers with everything from bookings to discovering nearby things to do. IHG is trialing its Amazon Echo assistant at select Crowne Plaza hotels. The service uses an in-room Amazon...

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Mobile apps still off radar for most small businesses

Will cheaper, quick-to-create mobile apps convince more small businesses to make them? Not necessarily. While nearly half of small businesses say they plan to have a mobile app within the next few years, nearly a third (31%) still have no plans to do so, according to a survey on small business apps by tech research firm Clutch. But that wait-and-see attitude will likely change soon. That’s because as small businesses see other local businesses and competitors releasing mobile apps, they’ll be more motivated to create their own. Today’s younger consumers who’ve grown up with mobile devices have come to expect apps...

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