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New Screenshots of Material Designed Google Play Store Surface


It has been a minute since we have gotten a Play Store update, but it looks like one is right around the corner. Android Police got an exclusive look at the new Play Store with some of that delicious Material Design implemented in it, and the images look mouth-watering.

Looking through some of the screenshots, playing movies through the Google Play has certainly added a nice overlay UI, and the screenshot below that features the Grand Budapest Hotel was actually shown off during this year’s Google I/O. No word on exactly when this new revamped Play Store will be available for download. They might roll out numerous updates in waves, but hopefully it will happen in one shot. If you want to check out all the screenshots from Android Police, hit the source link below to check them out. let us know your thoughts about the new look.


Android Police

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The post New Screenshots of Material Designed Google Play Store Surface appeared first on AndroidSPIN.


Apple May Part Ways With Ad Agency TBWA, Plans to Tap Beats’ Jimmy Iovine for Marketing Revamp

Apple may be planning to part ways with longtime ad agency TBWA/Media Arts Lab, according to a new report from The New York Post. Citing industry buzz, the report suggests that Apple is ready to put its entire advertising account “up for grabs.”

The Cupertino company is also said to be planning to leverage Beats co-founder Jimmy Iovine to bolster its marketing efforts. Beats is well-known for its aggressive marketing tactics and clever advertising campaigns that have skyrocketed its headphones to popularity. Most recently, Beats launched a “The Game Before The Game” advertisement for the World Cup, featuring key players wearing Beats headphones.

Beats’ most recent advertisement

What’s more, the industry is buzzing that Apple will look to music maestro Jimmy Iovine, the boss of newly acquired Beats headphones and its sister music-streaming service, to help it regain its marketing mojo.

“Apple bought Beats for a lot of reasons,” said one new business executive at a top agency. “They think they’re marketing geniuses. It is safe to assume Beats would be part of an assessment of all [Apple] partners.”

Apple’s troubles with advertising agency TBWA began back in 2013, after Eddy Cue sent a tense email to the agency following a line of highly popular Samsung commercials with the tagline “The next big thing is already here.”

Apple reportedly considered parting ways with TBWA at that time, but instead began working on building out its own in-house advertising solution while continuing to allow TBWA to produce some of its recent popular advertisements like “Powerful.”

Despite continuing a relationship with TBWA, Apple has pitted its in-house team against its longtime partner and it has also invited outside agencies to offer pitches on major projects, suggesting tension between the two companies has been ongoing.

Apple has plans to hire 1,000 employees for its in-house team, which may end up replacing outside agencies altogether when complete. Most recently, Apple’s in-house team created “Strength,” the company’s newest advertisement that takes advantage of the “Chicken Fat” song and focuses on fitness.


Microsoft says super-cheap Windows devices are on the way

It used to be that if you only wanted to pay $199 for a brand-new laptop, you’d have to try your luck on Black Friday or pick up a Chromebook. Not so anymore. Microsoft COO Kevin Turner outed a $199 HP Windows laptop called the Stream at the company’s Worldwide Partner Conference this morning, and it should see the light of day in time for the holiday season. Fine, it doesn’t sound like the biggest deal ever. There are already a few solid Windows laptops floating around there for less than $100 more, after all, and at this point no one’s sure what $199 will actually get you. That’s a fair point, but c’mon: on some level this move is all about symbolism. Microsoft is telling the industry — and the consumers that fuel that immaculate machine — that it’s not giving up low-end computing to Google without a fight.

Nadella and his crew are banking on the fact that Windows provides greater functionality and extensibility than ChromeOS right out of the box. When computer shoppers can own the full Windows experience (for better or worse) for the same price as committing to a Chrome-y connected lifestyle, they’ll have to mull that choice over. That’s exactly what Microsoft wants. Turner also confirmed that the next few months would bring at least a few full-blown Windows tablets priced to move at $99. That announcement wasn’t as much of a surprise since the folks in Redmond revealed that the OS would be free to manufacturers when its installed on device’s with screens under 9 inches. It was only a matter of time, but hey — that doesn’t make the gesture any less meaningful.


Source: The Verge


Apparently, the internet loved the 2014 World Cup final

The numbers speak for themselves: This year’s World Cup has been setting records all over the place. Not only did it keep folks in the US tuned into their team with services like WatchESPN, but who could forget the most tweeted-about sports game ever in that 7-1 thumping suffered by host nation Brazil — Sad Brazilians, anyone? Yesterday’s final, meanwhile, which ultimately saw Germany beat out Argentina for football’s biggest prize, set great numbers for social media and TV networks alike. For its part, Facebook reports that the 2014 World Cup Final was the biggest sporting event in its history, with comments, likes and posts combining for over 280 million interactions. Twitter, on the other hand, says the match produced a total of 32.1 million tweets and, in the process, broke the record for any event with 618,725 tweets per minute.

As for the streaming front, Spanish network Univision had 456,408 unique viewers total on the Univision Deportes website and apps. To put this in perspective, the Mexico vs. Brazil Group Stage game nabbed 1.6 million unique viewers, though that was before Univision started requiring a cable login to use its service and, granted, included a team whose fan base speaks Spanish. Comparatively, ESPN revealed much better numbers through WatchESPN, scoring 1.8 million viewers for the final match. This, combined with the rest of the World Cup matches, made the event the most viewed in WatchESPN’s history. Whether it was through Twitter, Facebook, ESPN or Univision, it’s safe to say FIFA made its mark Stateside, and globally, in 2014.

Oh, and how could we leave out this great selfie, courtesy of German world champion Lukas Podolski.

[Image credit: Associated Press]

Filed under: Home Entertainment, Internet, HD, Mobile, Facebook


Source: Twitter, Facebook


Microsoft’s image recognition AI is a stickler for the details

Computer scientists have been modeling networks after the human brain and teaching machines to think independently for years, completing tasks like document reading and speech cues. Image recognition is another useful chore for the neural networks, and Microsoft Research has just offered a peek at its recent dive into the matter. Project Adam is one of those deep-learning systems that’s been taught to complete image recognition tasks 50 times faster and twice as accurate as its predecessors. So, what does that mean? Well, instead of just determining the breed in a canine snapshot, the tech can also distinguish between American and English Cocker Spaniels. The team is looking into tacking on speech and text recognition as well, so your next virtual assistant may not only wrangle your schedule and commute, but could constantly learn from the world that you live in.

What’s more, the network is said to pack enough muscle to serve up accurate nutrition info instantly based on a smartphone photo of your plate. Based on the amount of data and training images, Project Adam’s deep learning builds a hierarchy that enables it to parse through tens of thousands of categories. “It automatically learns how to extract features from these images, so that when you show it an image that it has never seen before, it can accurately categorize it in one of the categories that you’ve already taught it,” says Partner Research Manager Trishul Chilimbi. The system’s neurons are employed to examine small portions of pictures rather than the entire thing. This allows for a more detailed breakdown of characteristics like facial recognition, textures and more (or breed specifics) for increased levels classification. As is the case with most research projects, there’s no clear indication as to when (or if) we’ll be able to make use the tech.

Filed under: Misc, Microsoft


Source: Micosoft Research (YouTube)


$20 reusable chip detects type-1 diabetes quickly and cheaply

Researchers from the University of Stanford have developed a microchip that could make it much less costly to diagnose type-1 diabetes. The debilitating disease often strikes children, and the quicker it’s detected, the easier it is to treat. The current test, however, is a time-consuming, costly burden for both hospitals and patients, requiring radioactive materials and several days of time. The new chip uses gold nanoparticles that cause fluorescent materials to glow when telltale antibodies are detected. Unlike the old tests, only a pinprick of blood is required, and the $20 chip can be reused up to 15 times. Such diagnostics could compliment other diabetes research, like Google’s glucose detecting smart contacts, along with potential treatments or even cures. Researchers said the test will be particularly useful in countries where the standard test is too expensive, and are now working to launch it globally.

[Image credit: Stanford University/Norbert von der Groeben]

Filed under: Science, Alt


Source: Stanford University


MIT’s new material opens the door to squishable, shape-shifting robots

MIT's shape-shifting robot material

Robots tend to be either very rigid or very soft, but neither extreme is ideal; ideally, machines could both squish themselves into tight spaces and remain sturdy for strength-dependent tasks. They just might, thanks to a team-up between MIT and Google’s Boston Dynamics. The two have developed a composite material that can switch between hard and soft states on the fly. The design mates a compressible foam inside with an external wax coating. If a robot needed to deform, all it would have to do is soften the right joints with a bit of heating. It could even heal damage by heating and cooling an affected area.

It’s still early days, but there are already plenty of potential real-world applications for the material. DARPA (the impetus for the project) wants robots that can literally slip through the cracks to reach otherwise inaccessible areas; they could rescue survivors trapped under rubble, for example. MIT, meanwhile, pictures surgical bots that could repair hard-to-reach body parts. We’re still a long, long way from the liquid metal of Terminator 2‘s T-1000, but these findings suggest that the concept of a shape-shifting automaton isn’t completely far-fetched.

Filed under: Robots, Science, Google


Via: TechCrunch

Source: MIT News


The United Kingdom can manipulate major communication services, from Facebook to phone calls

British intelligence agency GCHQ is able to not just monitor, but also modify many of the world’s most widely-used communications services: Facebook, YouTube, and phone calls are just a few of the services affected. The Intercept revealed the documents today (which can be read here), continuing reporter Gleen Greenwald’s year-plus of working with whistleblower Edward Snowden on exposing the clandestine surveillance tactics of the United States and Britain.

So, what exactly can the GCHQ do to these communications services? Beyond monitoring, of course; it’s already been revealed that the GCHQ is doing that.

One program, “WARPATH,” enables, “mass delivery of SMS [text] messages to support an information operations campaign.” Another, “BURLESQUE,” offers “the capability to send spoofed SMS [text] messages.” Used in conjunction, and that’s a pretty powerful way to spread misinformation: mass text messages from spoofed (read: falsified) senders could massively disrupt a modern protest movement.

The tools extend to online services as well, like Facebook. “CLEAN SWEEP” is a system that enables the GCHQ to, “masquerade Facebook wall posts for individuals or entire countries”; “GESTATOR” enables the “amplification of a given message, normally video” on “popular media websites” (the document specifically cites YouTube).

Hilariously, “UNDERPASS” enables the alteration of online poll results, and several services target Second Life users. Yes, that Second Life. Now’s a good time to point out that the documents revealed today were updated by GCHQ as recently as July 5th, 2012.

There’s a lengthy list of other services detailed in the documents, including the ability to infiltrate and log the actions on Windows PCs, to gain access to remote terminals by using Microsoft Office documents as trojan horses, and a variety of other invasive techniques. The Intercept‘s breakdown of said techniques is right here, and for more on the GCHQ — Britain’s secretive intelligence agency — here’s our original piece on the agency’s connection to the US National Security Agency and PRISM.

[Image credit: UK Ministry of Defense, Flickr]

Filed under: Cellphones, Desktops, Laptops, Wireless, Networking, Internet, Software


Source: The Intercept (1), The Intercept (2)


Eddy Cue Auctions Lunch and a MacBook Air to Benefit Basketball Foundation

Following in Tim Cook’s footsteps, Apple’s SVP of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue is auctioning his time to benefit the National Association of Basketball Coaches Foundation. Cue is widely known as a huge basketball fan, and has been seen at many basketball games, including those of his favorite team from Duke University, his alma mater.

In an auction on CharityBuzz, Cue is offering a one hour lunch meeting at Apple’s Cupertino headquarters and a 13-inch 1.4Ghz MacBook Air with 256 GB of storage, a $1,199 value. The meeting is valid for two people, with lunch included, at a mutually agreed upon date.


Have lunch with Apple, Inc., Senior Vice-President of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue at the Apple Headquarters in Cupertino, California, and bring home a 13-inch MacBook Air!

Eddy Cue is Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, reporting to CEO Tim Cook. Eddy oversees Apple’s industry-leading content stores including the iTunes Store, the revolutionary App Store and the iBookstore, as well as Siri, Maps, iAd and Apple’s innovative iCloud services. Eddy’s team has an excellent track record of building and strengthening online services to meet and exceed the high expectations of Apple’s customers. He is a 25-year Apple veteran and leads a large organization of amazing people.

Cue’s auction ends on Wednesday, July 16 and is currently priced at $9,500 with an estimated value of $10,000. The auction was first listed in June, but was noticed earlier today by 9to5Mac.

The National Association of Basketball Coaches Foundation is an organization that supports the charitable and education purposes of the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC). The NABC has been responsible for founding national literacy program Ticket To Reading Rewards and it operates the College Basketball Experience, a facility in Kansas City that includes the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame.

Tim Cook has previously teamed up with CharityBuzz twice, offering a coffee meeting in 2013 and a lunch meeting in 2014 for a collective $940,000. Tim Cook’s proceeds benefitted the RFK Center for Justice and Human Rights.


Google Play Store alleged Android “L” redesign screenshots leak

android l google play store___

Ever since Google announced Android “L” at Google I/O and developer preview of that OS, developers have been trying to push it out wherever they can. We’ve seen it ported to Nexus 4 and HTC One, other than that certain apps which try to emulate Android “L” apps have also hit the Playstore along with Nova Launcher which is trying to do the same thing with the looks of the app.

As you might now, you can already open Google+ app on your device and see what will Material Design (that will be used in Android “L”) look and feel. It was just a matter of time when we’ll see leaks of other Google apps dressed in Android “L”. Some screenshots leaked in which we can see parts of redesigned Google Play Store. This is of course an expected change and it is expected to come with Android “L” update, could see this update sooner though? Google+ is already there as well as a web version of Google Drive.

We might see this update hit Google Play Store sooner than expected, until then check out the screenshots and tell us what you think.

google play store android l redesign_3
google play store android l redesign_2
google play store android l redesign_1

Source: Android Police

The post Google Play Store alleged Android “L” redesign screenshots leak appeared first on AndroidGuys.

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