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Last chance: Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 Giveaway

Feeling jealousy when your friends whip out their fancy new tablets at get-togethers? Smiling through the pain as they swipe through photos of their recent trip to the Carribean while you try to push down the burning desire to throw your laggy old iPad into oncoming traffic? Okay, so maybe that’s just me but surely anyone who wouldn’t want a shiny new Galaxy Tab S 8.4 must be out of their minds — especially when the price is FREE. That’s right, we’re giving away a brand-spanking-new tablet to one lucky AndroidGuys reader! There’s no purchase necessary and entry is quick and easy so make haste and enter now… but let’s just keep all of the Carribean stuff between us, okay?

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Do Not Miss These Other Deals!

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Sony Xperia Z4 specs purportedely show up on GFXBench

Rumors and leaks surrounding Sony’s next flagship, the Xperia Z4, have been relatively quiet. We saw the Galaxy S6/S6 edge, HTC One M9, and now the LG G4 being leaked, but nothing too revealing on the Xperia Z4. Yesterday, some specs of a device, purportedly to be the Xperia Z4, leaked out on GFXBench.

According to the leaked specifications, nothing seems too extreme for the next Sony flagship. Among other things, it will feature the same size 5.1 inch display with 1080p resolution, a Snapdragon 810 processor, and is backed by 3 GB of RAM.

Xperia Z4 benchmark

It was expected that the Xperia Z4 would be a marginal upgrade over the Xperia Z3 and that seems completely on point. For those who were hoping Sony would jump up to QHD resolution and 4 GB of RAM, you may have to wait until September.

Now that the specs for the Xperia Z4 have leaked out, what are your thoughts? The device is expected to be debuted some time this month or next, so we will know if these are true pretty soon.

Source | Via

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TED, MTV, Pac-12 and Qello Concerts now on Chromecast

For 35 dollars, you can pick up Google’s Chromecast to play video and music through your TV.  Nothing special required other than a smartphone or tablet, the Chromecast is just a dongle that plugs directly into your HDMI port on your TV.

In keeping up with the competition, Roku, Apple TV, Fire, Google added another round of compatible apps you can stream to your TV.  Included in that group is TED, if you need inspiration to change the world, and the Pac-12 network which brings coverage of 30 sports including football, baseball, basketball, soccer, gymnastics and more.

Into music?  Jam out with Qello Concerts to enjoy full-length concerts from the likes of Rolling Stones, Nirvana, and others.  Chromecast owners can sign up to try a 1-month free all access pass to view concerts.

Enjoy your new apps!



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Google Play Games Player Analytics now available to developers

Google has done a lot of work in the past couple of years to implement a better way to game on mobile. When they introduced Google Play Games, a whole new world opened up to developers for users to save their progress, play online, play multi-player games, and more. Well now Google is expanding the usefulness of Google Play Games for developers by adding Player Analytics.

If you’re a developer, you can access this tool in the Google Play Developer Console. Google notes that big-name companies that use game analytics can do the following three things better than the average developer:

Manage their business to revenue targets
Identify hot spots in their business metrics so they can continuously focus on the game updates that will drive the most impact
Use analytics to understand how players are progressing, spending, and churning

Developers can go to the announcement on the Android developers blog here. Hopefully this will help make better games on Google Play altogether.

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Microsoft has (inadvertently) killed the ability to move offline maps to storage cards

Back in 2013, Nokia released an app for their Lumia line of Windows Phones dubbed Lumia Storage Check Beta. This app was in addition to just Lumia Storage Check, which was the main build of the tool that integrated into Settings and was part of the original 1308 firmware release.

The main difference between the Beta app and main release was the inclusion of offline Map data control in the beta. This new function lets users move offline map data to their storage card at will. At least, it did.

Since then, Microsoft took the idea and built their system called Storage Sense into the OS directly for all phones running Windows Phone 8.1. Storage Sense is also now a part of Windows 10, even for desktops.


Sound Guys Monthly – Bose SoundLink 3 international giveaway!


March was another big month in the world of audio. Over at Sound Guys we reviewed more great products (including our first sound bar) and some of our favorite manufacturers announced new products in lines we’ve already given positive reviews to. Plus, there was a heavy dose of the usual crazy audio stuff on Kickstarter, and that never gets old.

Sony announces the BSP60 Bluetooth speaker/personal assistant

Sony BSP60

In the BSP60, Sony has combined all the usual features you’d expect in a Bluetooth speaker – NFC, Bluetooth 4.0 – with some features you might not expect, like the ability to respond to voice commands. It’s a new take on the classic speaker / alarm clock, only a little pricier.

Read the article

You can now demo in-ears at participating Apple stores

5thAveApple Store

It’s always a risky feeling buying a new pair of in-ears. Will they fit? What about the sound? Now just head down to your closest Apple store and they’ll be happy to help you try out as many pairs as you like. Don’t worry – it’s more sanitary than it sounds.

Read the article

AXA Hifi Music Air purifier cleans the air for you while you listen to music


Combining a Bluetooth speaker with some other type of device is becoming more and more common, and it doesn’t look as if the trend will end any time soon. This Kickstarter project aims to combine a speaker with a HEPA air filter. Cleaner air with a side of music? We’ll take two.

Read the article

Creative Labs announces the new Sound Blaster Roar 2


The Creative Sound Blaster ROAR SR20 was one of our favorite speakers of 2014. It sounded great, had a ton of features and the price tag was surprisingly light. Creative has announced a speaker, and it looks bigger, better, and yes, more expensive.

Read the article

Sony refreshes their Bluetooth line with 3 new speakers


Last year we reviewed two speakers in Sony’s SRS line – the SRS-X3 and the SRS-X7 – and were impressed with both. Sony has decided to expand the line with three new speakers: the SRS-X11, SRS-X33, and SRS-X55. They range from $69 to $179, and while there is no release date yet, we’re looking forward to checking them out.

Read the article

Coolest of the month: Definitive W Studio


As mentioned at the top of the article, the Definitive W Studio was our first sound bar review, and it was good enough to get our pick for coolest of the month. It sells for $1299, but if you’re looking for a higher-end sound bar, it’s absolutely worth a look.

Read the review

Best bang for the buck: LH Labs Verb


In March we reviewed three separate pairs of low-cost earbuds, and much to our surprise, all of them were actually good. Even so, the LH Labs Verb stood out. Combining a solid yet light build with good sound quality, the Verbs are well worth the $39 price tag.

Read the review

Giveaway: Bose SoundLink 3


Congratulations to the winner of last month’s giveaway, the Sennheiser Momentum On-ears, Prabhu Muthu. For this month, we’re giving away another Bose SoundLink 3. For all the details, on how to win, check out the details below!

To enter the giveaway, head over to Sound Guys!


Google introduces new analytics tools to help game developers


Following up on an announcement a few weeks ago at the Game Developers Conference, Google is make the new Play Games Player Analytics tool available to all developers through the Google Play Developer Console. The Analytics tool will help developers manage their business to revenue targets, identify hot spots using metrics to develop new game updates, and understand how players are progressing, spending and churning.

Google is making the Analytics tool available for no additional effort for developers who are using Google Play game services in their titles. All they need to do is visit their Google Play Developer Console to access the reports generated by the tool. If a developer is not using Google’s game service, they can add this tool with a few lines of code added to their game, although it appears this will also add Google Play game services to a title.

Besides the basic reports and metrics, developers can also get access to a Sources and Sinks report if they enable Events from Google Play game services.

The revenue target tool gives developers the ability to set a daily goal for revenue. The report will then show Target vs Actual data. A Business Drivers report gives developers benchmark data so they can see how their game stacks up against the competition. Other reports will show player retention statistics and another will help developers identify which parts of a game players are struggling with or where they enjoy spending their time.

The Sources and Sinks report can be used by developers to analyze the in-game economy they have created in their titles. The data will show how players are earning rewards and how they spend them.

For game players, this should mean even better games and game updates hit the market as developers have more information and data to support their development strategy.

source: Android Developers Blog

Come comment on this article: Google introduces new analytics tools to help game developers


TweetDeck for Mac Updated With Teams, Group DMs, In-Line GIFs and More [Mac Blog]

TweetDeck for Mac on Wednesday received its first significant update since August 2014, gaining several new features that have been long overdue for the standalone OS X app. The new features include support for TweetDeck Teams, group direct messages, the ability to add up to four images with every tweet, in-line GIF and video playback, the option to share a tweet via direct message to a group of friends and more.

TweetDeck Mac
The update also contains a number of bug fixes and improvements to the overall performance of TweetDeck for Mac, and Dataminr subscribers can now add columns and receive notifications of new alerts to Dataminr watch lists. TweetDeck for Mac [Direct Link], an official product of Twitter, is free on the Mac App Store, and the latest update should be rolling out to all users today. The app now stands at version 3.9.482.


Netflix button coming to TV remotes across Europe

For a large group of people, Netflix has become the primary platform for watching TV shows and movies on a big screen TV. Digging into a menu and launching the app every day can be a pain though. The solution? TV remotes that offer a dedicated Netflix button, of course. They’ve been available in the US for years, but finally they’re coming to Europe too. For starters, Netflix is partnering with Sony, Panasonic, Toshiba, Philips and Vestel to offer the new remotes with several of their smart TVs, Blu-ray players and set-top boxes. The company says the move is part of its larger mission to work more closely with hardware manufacturers and optimize its service for subscribers. If that leads to a reduction in the time spent between switching on the TV and watching Bloodline, count us in.

[Image Credit: AP Photo/Neflix Inc.]

Filed under: Home Entertainment



Google Cardboard: A low-priced virtual reality experience

With Google I/O 2016 getting closer and closer, we wanted to take a look back to I/O 2015. Or more specifically, we wanted to take a look back at something Google introduced and gave away to attendees in 2015. That item was Google Cardboard, and while many took it as nothing more than a novelty item worth a few minutes of fun — we feel there is a bit more to Cardboard. We’ve seen plenty of virtual reality announcements in recent months, and those announcements are the reason we decided to take a look back at Cardboard.

You see, Google Cardboard is a solid introduction to virtual reality. We aren’t saying the experience is perfect, but there are some key selling points for Cardboard. For one, there are several companies offering a Google Cardboard headset. Perhaps even more important is the price point. You can easily find a Cardboard headset (all linked from the official Google Cardboard site) with prices ranging from $15 to $25. But you can also do a bit of Google searching and find simpler unbranded options for as little as a few dollars.


Personally, I paid roughly $15 for a handful of headsets (that were shipped out of China) so I could share with friends and family. There is nothing special about the model I picked up, and honestly, I don’t even remember the specific shop where I made the purchase. But that is not the real point here. With the $15 I spent I was able to do a bit of playing, and also allow some friends and family members to do the same.

Basically, those few Google Cardboard units allowed people to get a taste of virtual reality. And what I found isn’t all that surprising. Some people really enjoyed the experience and were excited to use a higher quality viewer, and some were completely turned off by the experience. Anyway, once you receive your Cardboard, you’ll likely have to put it together. That was a simple process, and also a fun process as it turned into some quality time with my 7 year old (who also seemed to enjoy the virtual reality experience).


Along with the Cardboard viewer, you’ll also need to download and install the Cardboard app on your smartphone. Google is offering the Cardboard app in the Play Store. The app is free to download, free to use, and will run on devices with Android 4.1 or later. I’ve used it on several devices including a Samsung Galaxy S III and a OnePlus One. That brings another item worth considering — some of these Cardboard viewers are available in different sizes, so make sure you order a viewer that will fit your particular smartphone.


The app itself is pretty basic and easy to use. By default you have the standard Cardboard demos to get you started. Those include a Tutorial, Tour Guide, Exhibit, Windy Day, Earth, YouTube, and Photo Sphere. And once you get through those, you can tap the “Get Cardboard apps” option for more fun. A tap of that link includes a few more Cardboard apps with options ranging from a VR Cosmic Roller Coaster, to a virtual tour of the Google Shop at Currys, to a Paul McCartney concert. Nicely, these other Cardboard apps are available for free. And if I can give just one tip — plug in some headphones when you are using Cardboard.


What We Liked

  • You will not have to spend very much money to enjoy Cardboard.
  • Can be a fun project and experience for those with children.

Room For Improvement

  • This is a case of getting what you pay for. Some of the lower cost viewers will have lower quality lenses and parts.
  • Seems to be a good introduction, but then stops short for those really enjoying the experience.

Overall I’ve enjoyed my time with Google Cardboard. My family (and friends) have had their viewers for about a month now, and while they don’t seem to get as much use as when they first arrived, I cannot say I regret making the purchase. Well, maybe I regret the purchase just a little bit because it showed me how much fun virtual reality can be and has me itching to buy something more professional to get a better experience.

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