When I woke up this morning, I didn’t imagine I’d spend part of my day inside a massive shipping container on a parking lot right under the Brooklyn Bridge. But that’s exactly what happened earlier today. The occasion? Adidas invited members of the media to an event where it showcased its latest running shoe, the AM4NYC, a New York City-inspired silhouette that was designed using sensor data and feedback from local runners. Not just that, but the sneaker was actually made at the company’s robot-staffed Speedfactory in Atlanta, an automated assembly line that combines craftsmanship with speed to create custom footwear.
For the Adidas Made For New York City, the company worked with runners around the Big Apple to figure out what would make the perfect shoe for them. Stability and more reinforcement in the forefoot was a big deal for people running in NYC, Adidas said, so it needed to design a Primeknit upper that was tight enough to make it feel stable. The AM4NYC also has a small torsion bar on the bottom of it that locks the midsole together, which will give runners more control when they turn. Meanwhile, the Boost material (used on Yeezy shoes, as well) offers enough cushion and energy bounce to make your runs as comfortable as possible.
With custom-made models such as the AM4NYC and AM4LDN (London), Adidas says it can produce great results because it tracks runners’ data points and body movement to create the ideal shoe based on an individual and their surroundings. During my demo, for instance, I went through a station where I had both of my feet scanned by sensors that could measure my left and right foot’s exact length and width. I then had to run on a treadmill for a minute, where my running stance was being monitored by another set of body-measuring sensors. The idea is that, in the future, Adidas could launch these types of experiences to its retail stores and bring customized shoes to the masses.
Until that happens, you can get the AM4NYC on April 26th at Adidas’ stores in New York City as well as the company’s site for $200. Additionally, the sportswear giant says it will also be selling new versions of its AM4LDN and AM4PAR (Paris) city-inspired sneakers that same day. You’ll have to act fast if you want any of them, though, as they’re all likely to sell out quickly.
Intel is planning to supply Apple with 70 percent of the modem chips that will be used in the 2018 iPhone lineup, according an unnamed source that spoke to Fast Company. Qualcomm will allegedly provide the rest.
KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo previously suggested Intel might be Apple’s sole supplier for LTE modems in 2018 given Apple’s ongoing and increasingly tense legal battle with Qualcomm, while The Wall Street Journal said Apple might use Mediatek and Intel chips to avoid working with Qualcomm, but Fast Company says that’s not the case.
Intel will supply the lion’s share of the chips, but because 2018 is the first year that Intel is fabricating its own chips using its 14-nanometer process, Fast Company’s source says Apple plans to continue to use Qualcomm chips in 2018.
Given that technological transition, Apple is apparently waiting to see how well Intel fulfills this year’s order. If Intel underdelivers, Qualcomm will make up the balance on top of the 30% it’s already planning to provide. There’s also a chance that if Intel can produce enough chips on time and on budget it could get more than the planned 70%, our source says.
Intel is reportedly not hitting its expected modem chip yield rates at the current time, with just over half of chips produced coming out in an acceptable quality. Intel engineers are, however, confident that yield rates can be pushed up before production ramps up in the summer months.
While Intel may not be Apple’s sole supplier for modem chips in 2018, if its chip production speeds up and kinks are worked out, Apple will transition solely to Intel for its 2019 iPhone lineup, effectively cutting ties with Qualcomm.
Apple first adopted Intel chips in the iPhone 7, released in 2016, moving away from Qualcomm as its sole supplier. Since early 2017, Apple and Qualcomm have been embroiled in a bitter legal battle, which has led to Apple’s efforts to cease using Qualcomm chips all together.
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The new Xiaomi Mi 6X has launched in China, and it’s what we’ve come to expect from the brand — a modern phone with great specs and a low price. It’s highly unlikely to be sold outside of Xiaomi’s usual markets, though, so why should you care? Xiaomi recently launched its first Android One phone, the Mi A1, which was based on the 2017 Mi 5X. This means the Mi 6X is likely to be the template for any Mi A1 follow-up device the company decides to launch in the future.
Android One makes Xiaomi’s smartphones more accessible to the world, due to having the latest version of Android preinstalled, guaranteed future software updates, and approval from Google itself. Let’s examine the Xiaomi Mi 6X to see what we can learn about a potential Mi A2 in the future.
This is a big phone, with a 6-inch LCD screen and an 18:9 aspect ratio, plus a 2140 x 1080 pixel resolution. It’s powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 660 processor, making it a strong midrange device, and three different memory and RAM combinations will be sold. The basic 64GB model has 4GB of RAM, the same as the larger 128GB model. Another 128GB model with 6GB of RAM will also be available.
On the back is a dual-lens camera, mounted off to the side and vertically stacked like the iPhone X. It consists of a 12-megapixel lens with an f/1.75 aperture, plus a 20-megapixel lens to improve lowlight and portrait pictures. Xiaomi has integrated some artificial intelligence (A.I.) into the camera for scene recognition and portrait enhancements. Xiaomi claims more than 200 scenes are recognized by the camera, and for portrait use, it will learn to better separate faces and objects from the background over time.
The specification continues with a 20-megapixel selfie camera, a 3,010mAh battery, Android 8.1, and Xiaomi’s latest MIUI 9.5 user interface over the front. You can choose between red, pink, gold, blue, and black color schemes, and converted local prices show the Mi 6X starts at around $250. Currently, Xiaomi hasn’t announced there will be a Mi A2, or that it will be based on the new Mi 6X. We’ll just have to see if history repeats itself.
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Google has been working on a new streaming service, called YouTube Remix, for some time now, but the launch of that service may signal the end of one of Google’s other streaming services — Google Play Music. According to a report from Droid-Life, which cites a “reliable source,” Google is planning on forcing Google Play Music users onto YouTube Remix by the end of 2018.
YouTube Remix was confirmed to be in the works by Lyor Cohen, Google’s head of music, last month, but details about the new service are still a little scarce. According to Cohen, the service will combine Google Play Music’s context server with YouTube’s massive catalog. Droid-Life’s source apparently agrees with this, and indicates the new service will be able to do things like play music depending on the time of day, your location, and so on.
In response to the report, Google has released a comment. “We’ve previously announced the combination of the YouTube Music and Google Play product teams — music is very important to Google so it’s critical we have one offering that meets the needs of consumers and artists,” said the company in an emailed statement. “Nothing will change for users today and we’ll provide plenty of notice before any changes are made.”
Of course, YouTube Remix will have to be a great product to replace Google Play Music. Google Play Music is among Google’s most-loved services, though it’s not as popular as the likes of Apple Music and Spotify. It’s most likely that in the transition, your playlists, libraries, and music files will be carried over to the new service, though as Droid-Life notes, this has yet to be confirmed.
The new service may also mean the end of Google’s slightly messy slate of other services. While Google Play Music is Google’s most-used music streaming service, the company also offers YouTube Music, which, as the name suggests, allows users to play music straight from YouTube. Hopefully the new service will simplify Google’s music services in general. There’s also YouTube Red, which offers some exclusive YouTube content.
We do expect that to be the case — in February, Google combined its Play Music and YouTube teams, and Cohen said at the time that combining YouTube Red and Google Play Music so that users could use one service was a priority. If there had to be one surviving brand, it would make sense for it to be YouTube.
We’ll have to wait and see what Google’s music streaming services end up looking like — but hopefully the new service will please both Play Music fans, and those who want a little more from their music streaming app.
Updated on April 25: Added statement from Google.
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Find yourself struggling to keep yourself organized, and consistently lose track of your daily tasks? Google has quietly launched a new app, Google Tasks, for iOS and Android that wants to be your go-to to-do app.
It’s a simple app, with a straightforward premise: Note down the tasks you need to do, and use the app to make sure they’re done. The twist comes from Google’s integration of the app into its other G Suite services. Namely, you can create tasks and to-do lists directly from Gmail or Google Calendar, and then use this app to manage them. This comes as a part of a larger update to Google’s Gmail that adds a bunch of extra features to the venerable service, as well as some added integrations with other G Suite apps.
This interconnected nature is certainly a part of the charm of Google Tasks, but it’s also entirely possible to use Google Tasks without Gmail, Google Calendar, or any other elements of Google’s G Suite. Users are able to add tasks in the app by tapping the large blue oval Add new task at the bottom of the screen, and add comments for specific tasks, as well as reordering them by dragging and dropping. If time is of the essence, then tapping a task will also allow you to set a due date, (though no specific times, oddly), and if a task needs splitting up into different sections you can add subtasks from here too.
If you’re organizing tasks for both work and play and like to keep the two separate, Google Tasks also supports task lists to help you keep things separate. To get going on that, just tap the hamburger icon (three parallel lines) in the bottom-left and tap Create new list. You can then navigate between lists by hitting the hamburger icon and selecting the right list.
In terms of design, Google Tasks is one of the first examples of Google’s new Material Design 2 that we expect to see featured in future Google products. Look for longer oval buttons, more rounded corners, and a general darkening of the color palette compared to Google’s previous Material Design.
Google Tasks is currently available on the Google Play Store, will soon be available on Apple’s iOS Store, and a desktop version is available too. If you’re interested in getting some more organization in your life and want to explore options outside of Google’s offerings, then check out our list of the best to-do apps for both iOS and Android.
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An update to Android’s inbuilt emoji database will change the pistol emoji into a Super Soaker-style water pistol, bringing Google’s operating system in line with a growing trend over the last couple of years.
The change was first reported by Emojipedia, which noticed the changing of Google’s emoji repository on GitHub. The change sees the emoji morph from a realistic gunmetal grey and brown revolver into an orange Super Soaker-style water gun, complete with a large water reservoir on top. This change comes contrary to previous statements by Google employees that the company was not looking to change the gun emoji design, despite other emoji databases changing to a water gun design.
This change in Google’s decision is most likely to promote “emoji-parity” across all different platforms, but it’s also likely that the change has come as a result of an increasingly controversial topic of gun control and violence in the United States, and changing to a less controversial image is favorable for the company. It’s expected that this change will go live in the next major Android update — expected to be Android P.
Apple was one of the forerunners of the water gun design, changing its gun emoji into a simple green water pistol in August 2016. Other companies were slow to pick up on the trend, but we’ve recently seen Samsung and Twitter follow suite with similar-looking green designs. Google’s design is the most dissimilar to Apple’s original design, but it’s clear that the search engine giant is looking to emulate a similar aesthetic and feel.
Interestingly, Microsoft’s gun emojis have gone the opposite way to the norm, changing from an alien ray gun design to a more realistic revolver shortly after Apple’s redesign. This came despite Microsoft’s unity with Apple in opposing a rifle emoji.
Changes to emojis are nothing new, though they’re often much less notoriously controversial than the gun emoji. Google changed its cheeseburger emoji last year following a righteous outcry on Twitter over the placement of the cheese, while Apple’s newest set of emojis are helping to promote a larger sense of inclusion, with a new set of emojis for disabled people. Development of new types of emojis is also rampant, with Apple’s Animojis and Samsung’s AR Emojis using augmented reality to create more personalized emojis.
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Considering how popular Harry Potter is, it’s surprising that Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery is the first game that lets you create your own witch or wizard and become a student at Hogwarts. Nevertheless, Hogwarts Mystery is available now on iOS and Android.
After you create your character, Hogwarts Mystery starts off in Diagon Alley, where you gather the essential items for your first year of school. In Diagon Alley, you secure your textbooks from Flourish and Blotts, get fitted with a wand at Ollivanders, and answer personality questions along the way, which influence which house the Sorting Hat puts you in.
As an RPG, your choices in dialogue affect the way your time at Hogwarts unfolds. You attend classes, make friends, play Quidditch, duel other students, and even have the opportunity to romance your crush. The game features interactive spellcasting using the touchscreen swipes, which you will learn under the watchful eye of your professors.
The game is set in the 1980s, in the gap between the death of Harry’s parents and his arrival at school. So there will be no interacting with the most famous young wizard in the world, but you will see other familiar faces from the books and movies. Maggie Smith reprised her role as Professor McGonagall and Michael Gambon will offer you sage advice as Dumbledore. Professor Flitwick, Madam Hooch, Madam Irma Pince, and Madam Pomfrey are all voiced by the original film actors as well.
You will also meet some new characters that will prove to be important to the overarching story in Hogwarts Mystery: Penny, a Hufflepuff potions aficionado, Merula, a Slytherin with a troubled past, and Tulip, a Ravenclaw class clown. This will also be the first time you see characters such as Bill Weasley and Tonks in their Hogwarts days.
Hogwarts Mystery lets you play through all seven years of your education at Hogwarts. The most appealing aspect of Hogwarts Mystery for most Potter fans will probably be the freedom it gives you to explore the grounds. It’s not a linear experience where you’re tied down to one objective at a time.
Hogwarts Mystery was developed by Jam City and published by Warner Bros. new Harry Potter-dedicated label Portkey Games. Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery is free-to-play on iOS and Android.
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Not a fan of Snapchat’s redesign? A test suggests that the company could be bringing back snippets of the old version and merging them with the new app. Snapchat recently confirmed a test that brings Stories from friends into the Discover tab, creating less of (but not completely bridging) the separation between brands and friends.
The test, available only to a small group of users, puts Stories from friends into the Discover tab. The change is somewhat similar to Snap’s earlier design that mixed all the Stories in one place. In the test, The Discover tab has sections for friends, a separate section for subscriptions, and another for suggested content.
The move isn’t exactly like the old Snapchat — those Stories are on the same page, but not inside the same stream. That means if you tap a Story from the friends category on the Discover page, that won’t be mixed in with brand content — you’ll still have to head to the subscription section to view content from brands. Separating companies from people was a big focus for Snapchat’s new design and while the test could make Stories easier to find, the network isn’t completely bridging the gap between those two groups.
While for now, the move is only a test, a Snapchat spokesperson said that “we’re always listening to our community,” suggesting the change is in response to the user feedback that followed the redesign. Some users complained that they couldn’t find Stories from friends with the separation while others said they didn’t like how subscriptions were mixed in with Stories from users that they don’t yet follow.
Snapchat has rolled out several more minor changes since the update, designed to make the app simpler to navigate for users while also separating friends from brands. Stories can now be shared outside the app on the web, while the app also gained new text and mute options.
Snapchat declined to comment on why the network is testing the change. As Recode speculates, the move could be because, with separate locations for Stories, fewer users are watching Stories, or perhaps brands are getting fewer views with the separation. Snapchat hasn’t commented on either reason, but the company is slated to release an earnings report next week, which is usually accompanied by updated user numbers.
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Snapchat wants to redefine augmented reality because the platform’s latest Lenses aren’t just for altering your looks or your surroundings. On Wednesday, April 25, Snapchat launched Snappables, Lens-based games that serve as the platform’s first shared AR experience.
Snappables are AR games and experiences played inside the Snapchat camera where your face becomes the controller. For the game-like lenses, facial expressions and other movements will control the character in the game. One game, for example, invites players to open their mouth to move around the game space to catch falling eggs. Some games also use touch and other motions.
The second type of Snappable is less like a game and designed more as an interactive AR party. These Lenses, a Snapchat representative says, allows users to invite their friends to a virtual rock band or dance party.
Snapchat says that Snappables are designed as shared AR experiences — so while you could play some of those games solo, the games are really designed to be sent in a Snap to challenge friends. In these game-like Snappables, users can play, then send the Snap to a friend as a challenge to beat your top score.
While Snappables are designed as interactive games, the feature lives right alongside Snapchat’s other AR Lenses. With the update, the usual puppy dog masks and Lenses Snapchatters know and love will be to the right of the camera button. The new Snappables will be organized to the left of the button. The design keeps the games separate from the usual lenses, while simultaneously presenting them in a way that makes the Snappables easy for existing Snapchat users to find and play.
From the start, games will range from fighting aliens to playing basketball, but Snap says new Snappables will be released every week. The games are rolling out this week with an app update for both iOS and Android.
The AR games comes as Snap continues to push the platform as a camera, using AR to redefine what, exactly, that camera can do, including expanding custom Lens options. Earlier in 2018, the platform launched a Snap Maps geocaching game with a virtual Easter egg hunt.
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If you’ve ever had the feeling you’re paying too much for TV, you’re far from alone. Whether its the constant price gauging, or the simple fact that all TV was once free (albeit ad-supported), people are always looking for a way to pay less for their TV time. Then along comes something a tantalizing platform like Terrarium TV, which offers seemingly limitless free viewing of almost anything you’re looking for. The veritable problem is, of course, when things seem too good to be true, they often are.
Terrarium TV in a nutshell
A few years ago, Popcorn Time was all the rage. Powered under the hood by BitTorrent, Popcorn Time let users watch movies and TV shows for the low, low price of absolutely nothing. Unfortunately, since it was essentially letting users pirate content on demand, it wasn’t long before both ISPs (Internet Service Providers) and Hollywood came knocking, and the service was no more.
Terrarium TV operates similar to Popcorn Time, offering up content sourced via the internet in a sleek user interface, available only for Android-powered devices. While it operates slightly differently behind the scenes — which could be part of why it hasn’t been targeted by Hollywood just yet — Terrarium TV is very much the same idea in a nicer looking package, and it seems that its days may be numbered.
Does it even exist anymore?
It used to be plenty clear where to download Terrarium TV: Go to the official website and follow the instructions. Then the website suddenly disappeared, followed by the disappearance of the Terrarium TV project on GitHub. There was no reason given — the project’s creator just seemed to give up.
While it’s no longer a clearly defined project, Terrarium TV carries on. Because of the way the app works (which we’ll get to in a second), it doesn’t hinge on a centralized server, so as long as you’ve got the app, you’re good to go. The problem is that without a central website, copycats popped up left and right. Some of these might be legitimate or at least have good intentions, but it’s tough to tell the good from the bad.
The closest thing Terrarium TV has to an official website right now is its subreddit. If you’re looking for downloads or information, this is currently your best bet. However, Digital Trends cannot vouch for any of these services, so you’ll be moving forward at your own risk.
Looking at legality
As touched on above, right now Terrarium TV exists in a legal gray area of sorts. Similar to torrent sites, Terrarium TV doesn’t actually serve pirated content, it just collects links to videos that are already available on the internet. This is technically legal, but your ISP may not like it, which is why it’s nearly impossible to search for anything related to Terrarium TV without seeing ads for VPNs.
A closer look at how Terrarium TV works
Instead of pointing users to torrents, like Popcorn Time used to, Terrarium TV “scrapes” links to videos from around the internet, including those hosted on legitimate video services. When you choose what to watch, the app gathers links and uses these to start streaming.
“Terrarium TV contains only links to other sites on the Internet,” the Terrarium TV website used to read. “It does not host or upload any videos, films or media files. It does not store any media stream links on any of its servers. Terrarium TV aggregates links in a convenient, user-friendly interface.”
This is fine by itself. The real problem is that Terrarium TV doesn’t bother to check if these sources are legal or not. This means you might be watching something hosted on a TV network’s website or a rip uploaded to some video service you’ve never heard of.
Unlike many of these types of apps, Terrarium TV is only supported by Android-powered devices. This includes Android phones and tablets, Android TV devices, and even Chromebooks that run Android apps. You can also get the app running on Amazon Kindle Fire and Fire TV devices.
In all of these cases, it’s a bit more work than simply popping into the Google Play Store and downloading.
How to get Terrarium TV for your device
Due to the nature of the app, Terrarium TV isn’t available in the Google Play Store or the Amazon App Store. You’ll need to download and install the APK yourself. If you’ve done this before, the process should be familiar. If you’ve never installed an Android app via a method other than the Google Play Store, be sure to check out our guide on how to sideload apps.
There are plenty of places on the internet that offer up APK files to download, but in the case of Terrarium TV, you’ll want to stick to the app’s subreddit. For one thing, you’ll find plenty of helpful information here, and for another, you’ll be sure you’re getting the actual app.
Here there be dragons
There are a lot of spoofs out there — apps claiming to be Terrarium TV that either aren’t or include malware — and some have even made their way on to the Play Store before. Part of the process of sideloading apps includes turning off some security precautions, so you’ll want to make absolutely sure that you’re downloading the right thing.
A quick glance at search results shows at least 10 sites claiming to offer Terrarium TV, but it’s tough to say which if any of these are safe to use. If you want to be as safe as is possible in such a case, stick to the subreddit. Again, however, Digital Trends cannot verify that you’ll be getting the real deal.
Worth the trouble?
The simple fact that most websites that involve Terrarium TV are usually trying to sell you on one VPN service or the other shows that Terrarium TV isn’t on the most stable ground to be surfing upon. Between the dubious legality, the difficulty even tracking down the app, and the general distaste with which internet service providers regard Terrarium TV, it may prove to be more trouble than many users want to put up with. Fortunately, it’s not your only choice.
Alternatives to Terrarium TV
Pluto TV is similar to Terrarium TV in a lot of ways but differs in one important one: It’s totally legitimate. Pluto curates content from around the internet, offering it up in a simple, easy to navigate interface, presented as live TV channels. On-demand content is available too, and while it’s limited, it rotates fairly frequently. You’re not going to find the wealth of content available on Terrarium TV here, but Pluto is simpler, available on more platforms, and still 100 percent free. For more information, see our guide to Pluto TV.
Pluto isn’t your only option either. Kodi (formerly XBMC) can offer many of the same features as Terrarium TV when using the right plugins, and while it may occupy the same legal gray area, at least there is an official website so you can be sure you’re downloading the proper app.
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