Smartphone battery life may be slowly increasing, but it’s still difficult to get through an entire day on a single charge. To help with that problem, external battery packs can be quite useful. While convenient, battery packs can be bulky and too cumbersome to carry around on a daily basis. So why not go for something a bit smaller that will give you the charge you need to last the rest of your day? The 1500mAh TravelCard Wallet-Size Charger can tuck away in a pocket or a wallet with ease, ready to help out with your smartphone charging needs at any time.
The TravelCard Wallet-Size Charger is sleek, features a premium aluminum build, and is so lightweight, you’ll likely forget you’re carrying it around. Weighing only 2 oz. and measuring only 2.38″W x 3.5″L x 3.16″D, it can easily fit into any size pocket. And you won’t need to worry about carrying around a charging cable, because this battery pack has one built-in. Convenience is this charger’s main feature, and we’re sure it won’t disappoint.
Thanks to the Android Authority Deals Store, you can pick up the TravelCard Wallet-Size Charger for only $29. Considering the price is normally $39, this is definitely a steal. Head to the link below if you’d like to pick one up.
Well, here’s a nice Facebook feature for the more fun-loving users: the social network now lets you add stickers to photos before you even post them from an iPhone or an Android device. The social network launched a separate sticker app in December, but that one’s only for pictures to be sent through Messenger. Also, its built-in stickers were only for use in private messages and the comments section, prompting anyone who wanted cute accoutrements in their pictures to turn to third-party apps. Now, you’ll see a small icon at the bottom of each uploaded image, which you can click to see all the stickers you can use. These graphics can be resized, rotated, moved to another location — or just straight up deleted if you change your mind. Sure, go on and roll your eyes at the news, but we promise you teens and tweens will eat this up: cue the rise of super-kawaii, sticker-ridden Facebook selfies.
This afternoon — as we do every Tuesday and Thursday — Joystiq X Engadget Streams is taking a trip back through Greek mythology with Alien Trap Games’ Apotheon on PS4. Already available on PC, it’s one of the free games this month for PlayStation Plus subscribers and brings 2D action that’s more than a little similar to the old Metroid and Castlevania games. For a fresh twist, it’s got this pottery-art graphic style and a unique combat system. Your hosts today are Edgar Alvarez and Richard Lawler, so tune into Twitch.tv/joystiq between 3PM and 5PM ET as we give it a try.
[We’re playing a digital copy of Apotheon on Playstation 4, streamed on an Elgato Game Capture HD with Open Broadcaster Software at 720p. The game itself is much, much prettier.]
When I was in secondary and post-secondary school, I put tons of time into computer and console gaming. These days, I’m lucky if I can plan a time to watch a television show.
What I do usually wind up with are rare, random segments of time, during which I sometimes feel like squeezing in a few minutes of gaming entertainment. The only problem is, over the course of a year, I’ve found a few games that really want to unleash that old gamer in me and I have to struggle to put them down.
So because misery loves company, here are my top 5 Android games that you’ll definitely enjoy. As a bonus, all of these games will look great on your tablet in addition to your smartphone…..and they are Free.
If you love puzzle games, you’ll be addicted to Playdots Inc.’s TwoDots. This is the second game of their Dots series and I find it much more polished than its predecessor.
The premise is simple, connect the dots. It can be a simple connection of just two dots of matching color or a long, elaborate chain. You can also create squares (really it can be any rectangle), which will eliminate all the dots of that color on the screen.
There are also daily quests that will allow you to obtain mystery crates. These crates can be used at the start of a level and will do things like change all of the dots to a single color or extinguish wildfires.
You also have the ability to connect the game to Facebook, allowing you to compete against your friends in level medals. You earn points inside each level and that total number of points will give you one, two, or three medals. You’ll also be able to see which level your friends are on with their Facebook profile picture next to that level.
If you played TwoDots before and reached the top level, you may want to return as the developers recently updated the game to bump the number of levels to 235 from 135.
The only downside to this game is that it’s incredibly frustrating (like any good puzzle game, I suppose). It seemed like there was a certain tactic you could figure out after a while in the beginning in order to complete the level, but as I reached the higher levels, the dots seemed to come in randomly and it was by chance alone that I could complete the objectives. Maybe I’m just looking for a reason to explain my suckiness, though.
#2: SimCity BuildIt
When I was 16, I got into an epic fight with my Grandma Piedmont over a SimCity game I was playing on the PC for over an hour. She didn’t quite understand when I told her I was heavily investing in developing commercial real estate during my urban planning session and that I simply couldn’t abandon my citizens. Seeing as how I didn’t wind up with a career in city management, I’m going to give Piedmont the victory in that battle.
That hasn’t stopped me from returning to the Sim franchise, though, with Electronic Arts’ SimCity BuildIt. Sure, it’s pretty watered down from the SimCity of old and sure, in typical EA fashion, there’s a lot of money-grubbing going on, but it’s still a fantastic way to kill some time.
The graphics are excellent and look pretty sharp on my Samsung Galaxy Tab S. You can zoom in and out, and pan to different angles until you get that good view of your skyline, without any noticeable bit of lag.
If you’re unfamiliar with what you do in SimCity, just imagine waking up one day with a black SUV in your driveway and some nice lady in a pantsuit asking you to come build their town from the ground up. It’s not as simple as just putting up a few buildings and shops, though. You’ll need to secure resources for development, make sure your citizens are happy, and be mindful of infrastructure and services, like a police force and hospitals. Oh, and water, because apparently that’s important.
Like most free games these days, you can drop some of your cash into it in order to advance yourself. In this particular game, I would not recommend this. As is customary with EA, it’s a total rip-off. Your dollar gets you almost no where with this game.
This may be a good thing, though. It’ll force you to not play this game all day and instead you’ll just play it a few times a day at brief intervals, giving your timers a chance to count down on certain tasks.
#3: Trivia Crack
This is a social, intellectual game pure and simple. Connect with Facebook and then shame (or be shamed) by your friends. (If you don’t have Facebook, that’s fine, you can still play other people by logging in with your email address and finding your friends that way. And anyone can play random people around the world.)
Not to sound pretentious, but I do find the game on the easy side, but I’m basing this on many a post-Thanksgiving dinner where the family and friends gather around to play games like Trivial Pursuit. The questions in Trivia Crack are no where near that level of difficulty.
I enjoy getting to remotely spend time with friends and loved ones by playing this game, similar to how I used to enjoy playing Words with Friends.
The only complaint I have about this game is that it’s really easy to get a good streak going and just dominate your opponent. I think the addition of a “Lose Your Turn” wedge on the spinner would be a great way to eliminate this. As much as I hate those stupid wedges when I’m playing my wife in Wheel of Fortune on the PS3, it does have a specific function.
The app has a free version with ads (sadly there’s even some über annoying video ads) or you can purchase the premium version that will eliminate them.
#4: Darkness Reborn
I really loved Ultima Online when that was the MMORPG on the block. Of course, as computers grew more powerful, that game fell way out of favor. If you’re still sweet on playing a MMORPG set to birds-eye view, but don’t mind that it’s more of a dungeon crawl, then Darkness Reborn may be up your alley.
The game handles well and looks great on both my Nexus 5 and my Tab S. The controls are easy and you’re not overloaded with skills, which is a complaint I have about some games because touch screens and consoles are just not built for that kind of interface in my opinion.
The campaign is single-player, but you have your world boss dungeon and your PvP, both of which is where the multiplayer comes into play. PvP is great fun too, except when you get one too many archers in there (this is annoying seeing as how you’re looking down from a birds-eye view). There’s also a touch of crafting and leveling up of gear.
You also have the ability to purchase gemstones and coins, but you don’t really need to. GAMEVIL, the developers of Darkness Reborn, are very generous with giving you gemstones, so huge kudos to them for that.
I highly recommend this game to any MMORPG lover who is looking for a good experience with that genre on their tablet or smartphone. It’s not especially hard to put down like World of War-crack either. Oh, and it’s free!
#5: Rival Knights
I admit I have not played this game since Gameloft’s recent update, which brought different jousting arenas, obstacle courses, and archery. When I did play it (a lot), it was a blast!
So you’re a knight and like any good knight, you need to don your armor, ride your steed as fast as possible towards your opponent, and stab a 12 foot long jousting lance into their chest. That is the sole gist of this game.
There are three ratings in each match and you must have at least two of them be better than your opponent’s in order to win: defense (your armor rating), speed (determined by your horse’s rating and your timed clicking on a meter), and attack (based on your lance’s rating and accuracy in guiding the lance to the opponent’s weak spot). Your opponent, be it the AI or another player, will also be trying to best you in these three ratings.
If your armor, horse, and lance are not up to snuff, you are capable of visiting ye ole smithy and upgrading the components. This is where you’ll also go to purchase new items or equip stuff you won from the tournaments.
It’s a good thing that you can only play so many campaign and multiplayer matches before you have to wait for your bank to refill, otherwise it’d be really easy to just sit and play this game until your device’s battery wore out.
In terms of playing this on the tablet, it’s possible and it looks good. Unfortunately, the controls for this game make playing it on a 10-inch tablet a little unwieldy and it was affecting my accuracy. So a smaller tablet or smartphone might be better in this case.
I hope you give these games a try and let me know what you think in the comments below! They’re all free (or offer a free version) and I, personally, found them highly entertaining. If you have some games you like to play, feel free to mention them in the comments as well!
Come comment on this article: Top 5 free Android games that are incredibly tough to put down [February 2015]
As we inch ever closer to “Early 2015,” Jason Snell of Six Colors has compiled an excellent FAQ on all things Apple Watch: estimated prices, battery life, versions, how it works, and more. It’s so good that I’m rather jealous I didn’t get to write it first.
Six Colors, on their FAQ:
This time next year, we’ll probably all be wondering how we got by without our Apple Watches, but here and now there’s still plenty that we don’t know about the device Cupertino wants to put on your wrist. The crack Six Colors team (Jason Snell and Dan Moren) has assembled the sum total of human knowledge about Apple’s wearable device, or at least a reasonable facsimile. We’ll keep this document updated as more information is revealed.
We have lots of our own stuff on the Apple Watch here at iMore, but if you have specific questions, check out the Six Colors FAQ and see if it answers yours! It’s a great read.
Part of the “Big Four” US carriers, T-Mobile has long occupied last place in this race, but no longer — at least if John Legere’s latest statement is accurate. During T-Mobile US’s earning calls, Legere says that T-Mobile has grown to a point where it has now surpassed Sprint, taking third place in the race towards the top.
So how many subscribers does T-Mobile have? Before merging with MetroPCS, T-Mobile had 33 million subscribers, and after they jumped up to 42 million. Since then they’ve added 13 million more, coming to a grand total of 55. In contrast, Sprint went in to 2013 with 55 million customers, 2014 with 55 million, and 2015 with the same 55 million. Wait.. but isn’t that a tie? Technically yes, though Legere claims that Sprint has used some questionable moves like including inactive MVNO customers in order to bolster its numbers. Of course, we imagine that T-Mobile is also doing its best to skew the numbers in its favor. Legere does mention that “by a quarter or two” the gap should be noticeably larger.
Until an outside analyst or two takes a closer look, I’d take T-Mobile’s statement with a slight grain of salt and say it is more accurate that T-Mobile has, at least, caught up to the Now Network. Still, 13 million new subscribers is nothing to sneeze at. It is clear that T-Mobile’s uncarrier effort has sat well with mobile customers in the US, and T-Mobile doesn’t look to be slowing down anytime soon.
For what it is worth though, building up this reputation has cost T-Mobile and its parent company Deutsche Telekom a considerable amount of coin and continues to be a major expense for the company. And so it remains unseen whether T-Mobile can continue with this level of momentum long term. What do you think of T-Mobile’s progress so far? Do you think the uncarrier can find long-term fiscal success? Let us know what you think in the comments.
The G Flex 2 was first announced at CES 2015 and Sprint was quick to let the consumers know that they will indeed be carrying the device. Now we have some dates for the devices official launch with the network. The LG G Flex 2 will make its Sprint debut on March 13th, but those […]
The post LG G Flex 2 headed to Sprint March 13th, pre-orders open up February 20th appeared first on AndroidSPIN.
Apple may be building a stand for the Apple Watch at Galeries Lafayette, a high-end department store located on Boulevard Haussmann in Paris, according to a few news outlets based in France. Mac4Ever [Google Translate] reports that the stand would reside on the first floor of the department store, with possible expansion to other stores along the Avenue des Champs-Élysées.
Image of the Galeries Lafayette via Mac4Ever
Mac4Ever claims the current construction on the stand, which began at the beginning of February, is hidden as workers finish it up ahead of the Apple Watch launch in April. They also report that Angela Ahrendts, Apple’s new retail chief, oversaw the setting up of the display and general organizational duties concerning the project.
The fashion-focused FashionMag.com [Google Translate] added more details onto the rumor, and a slightly clearer picture of the ongoing construction of the possible Apple-leased space. The site reports that the project has taken the place of a small food court and a few lesser-known jewelry shops, and spans four balconies within the Galeries Lafayette. From what they could tell, it’s located near the stores of Celine Saint Laurent and Miu Miu.
Image of white tarps covering rumored Apple Watch stand via FashionMag.com
As the Apple Watch nears its launch date, news and rumors on Apple’s first wearable device have picked up steam. Most recently it was announced to be featured on the March cover of Self magazine on the wrist of model and Victoria’s Secret Angel Candice Swanepoel.
Apple has also reportedly placed between 5 and 6 million orders for the initial run of the Watch, with the most expensive gold Apple Watch Edition expected to dominate the revenue of the wearable, despite having the least amount of orders placed compared to the lower tiers of the Watch.
The One Laptop Per Child project is going modular. The non-profit’s Australian partner, One Education, is gearing up to launch a new hybrid laptop in a few weeks that will let you swap out components similar to Google’s Project Ara. There aren’t any official details yet, but Ink, Bits, and Pixels has managed to dig up several images that give us a basic sense of what’s going on. Dubbed the XO-Infinity, it can be used as both a laptop and tablet; it shares the colorful aesthetic from current OLPC devices (XO-4 tablet and laptop); and it looks like even kids will be able to easily change its different modules. And, if it works as we expect, it could end up serving as a platform for an infinitely upgradeable machine that will last you for years, making it ideal for schools and international markets. One Education has confirmed that the XO-Infinity will be officially announced in the next few weeks, but for now it’s keeping mum on saying more.
Source: One Education
Much-loved task management app OmniFocus has received a new look with the release of version 2.1 for Mac, bringing the app in line with the design language of OS X 10.10 Yosemite. The update also brings new extensions, offering tie-ins a widget for Notification Center and sharing options in compatible apps across your Mac.
Here are the major points of what’s new:
- Vibrant Interface — We adjusted the OmniFocus interface to better match OS X Yosemite. That included making new toolbar icons, adjusting the appearance of some other elements, and incorporating vibrancy where appropriate.
- Extensions — OmniFocus for Mac now has Today and Share extensions, just like on iOS. To enable the Today extension, click Edit at the bottom of Notification Center.
- Sharing — In addition to accepting content from other apps, the text of actions can be shared from OmniFocus using the share button in the toolbar.
- Tear-off View Options Popover — When the View Options popover is open, it can be dragged away from the window and exist on its own.
- Find and Replace — Find and Replace now works in actions as well as their notes.
- Help — In addition to being up to date with info on the new features, OmniFocus Help has a new look that should be easier to use. Scrolling is also smoother on retina screens.
- OmniOutliner Import — When importing from OmniOutliner columns can once again be mapped to OmniFocus fields.
- Localized Date Parsing — If OmniFocus can’t parse a date using localized relative date names, it will try using English relative date names.
The new version of OmniFocus is available for $39.99 for the standard version of $79.99 for the pro version, and can be tried out for free for 14 days. And because we like things that sync with our mobile devices, there’s also a $29.99 iPad OmniFocus app and a $19.99 iPhone OmniFocus app.