This is the sapphire crystal display from the iPhone 6 | Thetechblock

thenextiphone:

It seems to be extremely durable. 

I cringed as I watched this torture test. Very impressive. It would be interesting to see a direct comparison to a Gorilla Glass display. Maybe they’re just as good?

Android Wear hardware review: Sometimes promising, often frustrating | Ars Technica
Android Wear software review: Smartwatch software that doesn’t suck | Ars Technica
Interesting read. And telling headlines. On one hand it is clear that these watches actually give users a great way to deal with notifications. On the other hand the reviews are clear that “notifications-on-your-wrist still isn’t a killer app”. Will it ever be? Not for me probably. But I can think of a few other ways a smartwatch could be useful for me. And that is maybe the promise of smartwatches. Apps will let users expand their abilities to fit their individual lifestyles. But smartwatches still need to find a few widely attractive killer apps in order to reach a mass audience. Like “internet, mail and maps in your pocket” were battering rams for the smartphone.

Android Wear hardware review: Sometimes promising, often frustrating | Ars Technica

Android Wear software review: Smartwatch software that doesn’t suck | Ars Technica

Interesting read. And telling headlines. On one hand it is clear that these watches actually give users a great way to deal with notifications. On the other hand the reviews are clear that “notifications-on-your-wrist still isn’t a killer app”. Will it ever be? Not for me probably. But I can think of a few other ways a smartwatch could be useful for me. And that is maybe the promise of smartwatches. Apps will let users expand their abilities to fit their individual lifestyles. But smartwatches still need to find a few widely attractive killer apps in order to reach a mass audience. Like “internet, mail and maps in your pocket” were battering rams for the smartphone.

Google I/O keynote round-up
There was a lot of interesting news and info coming out of today’s Google I/O event. In short, Google is trying hard to play an increasing part of our lives - on the web, on our computers, phones, watches, glasses, TVs and even in our cars.
Android One is a Google Play Edition program for cheap phones. Cheap phones with clean Android sounds nice.
Android TV is official. Is the third time a charm for Android to get into our living rooms? With increased attention to gaming this time around. I actually already have a cheap Android box connected to my TV. It is controlled by a wireless mouse and works wonderfully. The support for streaming services, including local variants widely exceeds competitors such as Apple TV and Roku (and Google’s own Chromecast for that matter). If theres an Android app for it, it works on my TV.
The new version of Android was on display with new functions and an updated “material” look which will be used throughout Android, Google’s web services and chrome OS.
In the future, Android apps will run on Chromebooks. Neat.
More info on Android Wear with third party apps and a new smartwatch from Samsung. LG’s G Watch with Android Wear as well as Samsung’s new watch will be available to order from the Google Play Store today, so we’ll soon know more how these things work in real life.
Users will be able to mirror their Android devices on Chromecast sticks. About time.
The keynote was interrupted by two different protesters. The first one was about housing evictions and the other one was about killer robots. Call me nuts, but I really hate the idea of killer robots.
The company also presented Android Auto which is Google’s take on a connected car infotainment system.
Google Fit is a health metric and training tracking platform which will be built-in the next version of Android.
Google Cardboard will enable Android devices to be a VR headset screen together with a DIY cardboard viewer. Virtual Reality on a budget.

Google I/O keynote round-up

There was a lot of interesting news and info coming out of today’s Google I/O event. In short, Google is trying hard to play an increasing part of our lives - on the web, on our computers, phones, watches, glasses, TVs and even in our cars.

  • Android One is a Google Play Edition program for cheap phones. Cheap phones with clean Android sounds nice.
  • Android TV is official. Is the third time a charm for Android to get into our living rooms? With increased attention to gaming this time around. I actually already have a cheap Android box connected to my TV. It is controlled by a wireless mouse and works wonderfully. The support for streaming services, including local variants widely exceeds competitors such as Apple TV and Roku (and Google’s own Chromecast for that matter). If theres an Android app for it, it works on my TV.
  • The new version of Android was on display with new functions and an updated “material” look which will be used throughout Android, Google’s web services and chrome OS.
  • In the future, Android apps will run on Chromebooks. Neat.
  • More info on Android Wear with third party apps and a new smartwatch from Samsung. LG’s G Watch with Android Wear as well as Samsung’s new watch will be available to order from the Google Play Store today, so we’ll soon know more how these things work in real life.
  • Users will be able to mirror their Android devices on Chromecast sticks. About time.
  • The keynote was interrupted by two different protesters. The first one was about housing evictions and the other one was about killer robots. Call me nuts, but I really hate the idea of killer robots.
  • The company also presented Android Auto which is Google’s take on a connected car infotainment system.
  • Google Fit is a health metric and training tracking platform which will be built-in the next version of Android.
  • Google Cardboard will enable Android devices to be a VR headset screen together with a DIY cardboard viewer. Virtual Reality on a budget.

Because the last thing you need is a phone with a “buy more crap” button.

Because the last thing you need is a phone with a “buy more crap” button.

The Amazon Fire Phone
- It’ll make you spend money, but comes with free photo storage to make up for it.
After what feels like years of speculation, Amazon today released its own smartphone - the Fire Phone. With a 4.7” HD screen, a quad-core 2.2GHz processor, a 13 MP camera and Amazon’s custom version of Android, the device seems to have good enough specs for a decent smartphone experience.
You can be sure that the Fire Phone will make it as easy as possible for you to shop from Amazon and tap into its services such as Amazon Prime, the Kindle book store and the company’s Android Appstore. Which is nice for Amazon. And maybe also for you depending on how much you like the company’s services.
What definitely IS good for you as a user is that Amazon offers free unlimited photo storage for pictures taken with the device. This will hopefully put some much needed pressure on other Android phone vendors as well as Apple to follow suit. To store and manage smartphone photos have become a real hassle for many of us.
The Fire Phone will be released on July 25th and the 32GB model is priced at $199 together with a two year plan from AT&T, or $649 without any service agreement. All info on pricing, features and specs can be found on Amazon’s Fire Phone website. It’s clear that Amazon didn’t play the low price card with the Fire Phone. It’s actually close to being a midrange phone with a high-end price tag.

The Amazon Fire Phone

- It’ll make you spend money, but comes with free photo storage to make up for it.

After what feels like years of speculation, Amazon today released its own smartphone - the Fire Phone. With a 4.7” HD screen, a quad-core 2.2GHz processor, a 13 MP camera and Amazon’s custom version of Android, the device seems to have good enough specs for a decent smartphone experience.

You can be sure that the Fire Phone will make it as easy as possible for you to shop from Amazon and tap into its services such as Amazon Prime, the Kindle book store and the company’s Android Appstore. Which is nice for Amazon. And maybe also for you depending on how much you like the company’s services.

What definitely IS good for you as a user is that Amazon offers free unlimited photo storage for pictures taken with the device. This will hopefully put some much needed pressure on other Android phone vendors as well as Apple to follow suit. To store and manage smartphone photos have become a real hassle for many of us.

The Fire Phone will be released on July 25th and the 32GB model is priced at $199 together with a two year plan from AT&T, or $649 without any service agreement. All info on pricing, features and specs can be found on Amazon’s Fire Phone website. It’s clear that Amazon didn’t play the low price card with the Fire Phone. It’s actually close to being a midrange phone with a high-end price tag.

Apple’s WWDC 2014 keynote in 10 minutes 

The Verge has put together a great 10 minute version of Apple’s WWDC keynote where the company introduced iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite. On that note, iOS 8 will come with a lot of useful APIs for improving the interconnection and workflow between apps as well as give apps better access to core software and hardware resources. Android style. Much wanted.

Google Self-Driving Car Project 

Google:

We’re now developing prototypes of vehicles that have been designed from the ground up to drive themselves—just push a button and they’ll take you where you want to go! 

…they’ll be designed to operate safely and autonomously without requiring human intervention. They won’t have a steering wheel, accelerator pedal, or brake pedal… because they don’t need them. Our software and sensors do all the work. 

The future just got a little bit closer.

Spotify Hits 10 Million Paid Users. Now Can It Make Money? | Bloomberg Businessweek

Spotify will announce today its 10 millionth paying subscriber, and an additional 30 million people listen for free. Ek says that as long as Spotify accomplishes its main task—getting people to stream more music—free users will continue to upgrade to paid subscriptions. “We know if you do that, you’re going to be like, ‘Hey, 10 bucks is nothing. It’s like two beers,’” he says. “In Sweden, it’s actually less than one beer.”

It’s hard out there for a swede.
Pic: Blood on the tracks album cover

Spotify Hits 10 Million Paid Users. Now Can It Make Money? | Bloomberg Businessweek

Spotify will announce today its 10 millionth paying subscriber, and an additional 30 million people listen for free. Ek says that as long as Spotify accomplishes its main task—getting people to stream more music—free users will continue to upgrade to paid subscriptions. “We know if you do that, you’re going to be like, ‘Hey, 10 bucks is nothing. It’s like two beers,’” he says. “In Sweden, it’s actually less than one beer.”

It’s hard out there for a swede.

Pic: Blood on the tracks album cover

Announcing Surface Pro 3 | Microsoft Surface Blog


We’ve increased the size of the screen – Surface Pro 3 has a 12” ClearType Full HD screen with 2160 x 1440 resolution. The new screen is 38% bigger than Surface Pro 2, with 50% more pixels.

Thinner, lighter and bigger. Instead of an iPad “killer”, Microsoft announced a very potent ultrabook/Macbook Air competitor. I love the larger, high resolution screen and the 3:2 aspect ratio. Prices start at $799 for the Intel Core i3 version with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage. The keyboard will cost you an extra $130 and the pen is yours for $49. All this adds up to $978 for the cheapest complete Surface 3 package. But you’ll probably want at least the $999 Intel core i5 version with 4GB RAM and 128GB storage. Add the case and the pen and we’re looking at $1178.

Announcing Surface Pro 3 | Microsoft Surface Blog

We’ve increased the size of the screen – Surface Pro 3 has a 12” ClearType Full HD screen with 2160 x 1440 resolution. The new screen is 38% bigger than Surface Pro 2, with 50% more pixels.

Thinner, lighter and bigger. Instead of an iPad “killer”, Microsoft announced a very potent ultrabook/Macbook Air competitor. I love the larger, high resolution screen and the 3:2 aspect ratio. Prices start at $799 for the Intel Core i3 version with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage. The keyboard will cost you an extra $130 and the pen is yours for $49. All this adds up to $978 for the cheapest complete Surface 3 package. But you’ll probably want at least the $999 Intel core i5 version with 4GB RAM and 128GB storage. Add the case and the pen and we’re looking at $1178.

First Sony RX100M3 images leaked | Sonyalpha rumors

A pop-up electronic viewfinder? Very cool! Other notable features are the fast 24-70mm f/1.8-2.8 lens and the 1” 20 MP sensor. If you have the money, this is probably the compact to get. The RX100M3 will be announced on May 16th and is rumored to set you back around € 800-850 Euro in Europe or $ 800-850 in the US.

Update: It’s out, it looks good and it will cost you $798 (preview at DPreview).