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11
Apr

Faster ‘NVM Express’ SSD Interface Arrives on Retina MacBook and OS X 10.10.3


Apple has quietly introduced support for the next generation NVM Express (NVMe) interface to SSD Flash drives in their latest OS X 10.10.3 update as well as in the new Retina MacBook which was released on April 10th.

nvmeSystem Report on new Retina MacBook
The NVMe software interface replaces the AHCI software interface in Apple’s previous notebooks, and offers improved latency and performance over the old protocol. Anandtech offers a good overview between the technologies:

AHCI (Advanced Host Controller Interface) dates back to 2004 and was designed with hard drives in mind. While that doesn’t rule out SSDs, AHCI is more optimized for high latency rotating media than low latency non-volatile storage. As a result AHCI can’t take full advantage of SSDs and since the future is in non-volatile storage (like NAND and MRAM), the industry had to develop a software interface that abolishes the limits of AHCI.

The result is NVMe, short for Non-Volatile Memory Express.

The new protocol is not to be confused with the underlying hardware that connects the SSD to Apple’s notebooks. Apple has already upgraded the physical interface to the much faster PCIe connectors a number of years ago.

Going into the future, NVMe will allow Apple’s hardware to take further advantage of the performance of SSDs as well as improve battery life with less time spent transferring data. Intel expects NVMe to also be coming to tablets and phones in the near future.

Thanks Jonathan



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11
Apr

Windows 10 build 10056: Everything you need to know


Microsoft has been keeping its promise on releasing more frequent builds of Windows 10, but this is not stopping private versions to leak onto the web. Windows 10 build 10056 was just spotted outside the walls of Redmond, and it shows significant cosmetic changes and various improvements coming to the operating system.

11
Apr

How to root the Samsung Galaxy S6




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So you just got your brand new Samsung Galaxy S6? Why not root it? Some apps that exist on the Google Play Store still require root privileges given how Android is designed, and as such sometimes it’s necessary to get root on your device in order to run such applications. The package that is used to obtain these escalated permissions comes courtesy of Chainfire which is a small package that is loaded into Odin and sent to your device to obtain root.

Using this root increases your flash counter and does trip the KNOX flag to void the warranty, so use at your own risk.

First, if you haven’t already got the USB PC drivers for your Samsung device, then head to this link to download them.

SuperSu download links

The package you’ll need to root your device will depend on the country you reside in – the different packages are listed below:

samsung SM-G920F zerofltexx zeroflte LRX22G.G920FXXU1AOD9 Download aebe357f959d31e3bdb2265fd467683f
samsung SM-G920I zerofltedv zeroflte LRX22G.G920IDVU1AOC6 Download 9bced748aab01e7fc5b7712edf9871d4
samsung SM-G920T zerofltetmo zerofltetmo LRX22G.G920TUVU1AOC9 Download c2f3d984f7e10545f9dfaa5ed679e0de

 

Once that’s downloaded, head on to the instructions below to Root your Galaxy S6.

Instructions to Root the Galaxy S6

– Download and unzip the CF-Auto-Root-….zip file
– If you end up with a recovery.img and cache.img file, you’ve extracted twice. You need to end up with a .tar.md5 file – don’t extract that one
– (USB) Disconnect your phone from your computer
– Start Odin3-vX.X.exe
– Click the PDA button, and select the tar.md5 file
– Put your phone in download mode (turn off phone, then hold VolDown+Home+Power to boot – if it asks you to press a button to continue, press the listed button).
– (USB) Connect the phone to your computer
– Make sure Repartition is NOT checked
– Click the Start button
– Wait for Android to boot
– Done

You should now see SuperSU installed in your app launcher and able to grant any apps that require root the appropriate permissions. For the root to work, the device must reboot into recovery. Most devices will do this automatically after flashing these files, but in case that does not happen, please boot into recovery manually.



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The post How to root the Samsung Galaxy S6 appeared first on AndroidGuys.

11
Apr

Understanding the first generation of Apple Watch apps


As devices and capabilities changes, so too does the very definition of “apps”.

Messages used to be an app I launched constantly. Now it’s often something I access through Siri or, more often than not, interactive notifications from anywhere on my iPhone. Likewise, PCalc used to be an app I hunted to find amid pages of icons and folders. Now it’s a widget I can swipe down at any time. Apps have been unbundled and, in large part, their functionality has been set free. No longer hidden or lost, specific interactions can now manifest everywhere — our iPhone, iPad, AirPlay-enabled TV, CarPlay-enabled dashboard, and soon, the Apple Watch.

When Apple originally announced the Apple Watch back in September of 2014 all they promised in terms of third party app support was interactive notifications and widgets. When Apple delivered WatchKit, they not only had short and long looks and glances, but remote views — app-like extensions that lived on the iPhone but presented their interface on the watch as well.

Much of this was made possible by Apple’s new Extensibility and Continuity functionality that decoupled apps and interface and synced activity across devices in a way that will likely evolve mobile software for generations to come.

Native apps were promised for later in 2015, but Apple was very careful to set expectations for the first generation of Apple Watch software. There are obvious constraints, power conservation above all. But people — and writers — get excited and often forget what is for what they wish would be.

Understanding the constraints is going to be supremely important, but so understanding the fundamental change in what it means to interact with mobile devices.

In “Keep calm and Apple Watch on” I went over the differences in the context of a user.

The Apple Watch isn’t an iPhone any more than the iPhone is a Mac. Computing has moved from the server room to the desktop to the laptop to the pocket and now onto the wrist. Every time that’s happened, every time it’s moved to a new, more personal place, those of us who were used to it in its old place have become slightly anxious, we’ve become subject to our own expectational debt.

It’s the same thing for developers.

Making an Apple Watch app, either now or in the native-enabled future, shouldn’t be the same as making an iPhone app any more than making an iPhone app was the same as making a Mac app. It shouldn’t be an icon dumped on the carousel that a customer has to hunt and peck for and then struggle to use as they watch their battery life drain away before their eyes.

An Apple Watch app should be a set of functionality that manifests when, where, and as the customer needs it. Rapidly disappearing are the days where we had to go to the software. Now, the software has to start coming to us.

Sure, Apple Watch apps won’t update when they’re not connected to an iPhone, just like a web app won’t update when it’s offline. Yes, there aren’t native app-style transitions or interactions, because there aren’t yet native apps. All of that is known. All of that has been known since the Apple Watch was first announced. There’s no surprises here. There’s just opportunity.

What is an app in the post-Apple Watch world? What functionality does it need and how can that functionality best manifest on the wrist?Maybe all that’s needed is really tight notifications, maybe a really essential glance, or maybe some incredibly important interactivity. Going through that thought process — distilling what’s critical on a small screen for a brief period of time — is the opportunity here.

As one developer told us:

Some see limits as a limitation rather than a chance to be creative. I love limitations as they are an easy way to stand out from the crowd. You can quote me on that.

When it comes to developing for the Apple Watch, if there’s something that can’t be done, think about whether it really needs doing in an Apple Watch environment. If it does, think about how you can make the constraints work for you, not against you. You might need to reconsider some long-held assumptions and evolve some habit-formed opinions, but that’s a vital process for everyone to go through, especially when working on something so new.

As with anything new, there will be growing pains. Looking back, the early iPhone web apps didn’t do anywhere nearly as much as current iPhone apps, but what really talented developers managed to do even with those incredible constraints was brilliant. So to, watch apps.

I’ve had the opportunity to try quite a few Apple Watch apps on the Apple Watch and several of them not only impressed me — they delighted me. I’m not deluding myself. There will be times when they’re slow or fail to update, when they don’t work the way I expect them to, or when I’m forced to work around them instead of with them. That still happens with phone, tablet, and computer software sometimes, of course, but I’m expecting it to happen more with the Apple Watch because it’s so new. Because we’re all — Apple, developers, and customers — going to need to learn what it really is and what it means.

Native apps will come, maybe extended or third-party watch faces, maybe with other things we’ve only begun to discuss. And one day the Apple Watch will go iPhone-free the way the iPhone went PC-free with iOS 5. (Yes, iOS 5.)

For now, though, I’m not the least bit concerned that Apple Watch apps won’t be iPhone apps. I already have an iPhone for that, and the definition of what it means to be an app is in the middle of a big enough change that I’m happy the Apple Watch won’t be saddled with that legacy out of the gate.

What I am concerned about is how well all the new unbundled functionality, all the short and long looks, all the glances, all the really necessary interactivity is brought to me on my wrist. And which developers are going to be genius enough to do it first and best.

11
Apr

Xiaomi to unveil next Mi smartphone on April 23 in New Delhi


Xiaomi is set to unveil its latest Mi device on April 23.

Xiaomi has sent out invitations for an event on Thursday, April 23 in New Delhi, India. The company’s teaser site for the event says that “i Is Coming”, though there is no indication as to what that might mean.

11
Apr

Xiaomi to unveil next Mi smartphone on April 23 in New Delhi


Xiaomi is set to unveil its latest Mi device on April 23.

Xiaomi has sent out invitations for an event on Thursday, April 23 in New Delhi, India. The company’s teaser site for the event says that “i Is Coming”, though there is no indication as to what that might mean.

11
Apr

Android ads. Fun, creative, and powerful. Check out the YouTube videos.






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We are literally bombarded with advertisements everywhere we look, and that means most of us are pretty good at tuning them out.  I wanted to put together a few of the examples of fun ads for you to watch, all in one place.  Android has a wide variety of commercials, where they use the Adroidified characters you can create using the Androidify app or webpage, and they have ads where they show where people should Be together.  Not the same. Androidguys is in no way a political website, but now more than ever with the events going on around the world and especially in our own country, we truly do need to be together and appreciate our differences.

I find these shorts ads very entertaining and some have quite a powerful message.  If you haven’t seen them or want to watch them again, I have posted some of my favorites below.  Here is the link to Android’s official YouTube page too if you wanted to see more of them.

 


The post Android ads. Fun, creative, and powerful. Check out the YouTube videos. appeared first on AndroidGuys.

11
Apr

WSJ: Google has a small research team working on future battery technology


Google_Logo_Visitors_47558

According to a report published by The Wall Street Journal earlier today, Google has a group of researchers working on future battery technology for use in its upcoming devices. The team of four reportedly got together in late 2012, with former Apple battery expert Dr. Ramesh Bhardwaj at the helm.

The publication states that the team “first started testing batteries developed by other companies for use in Google devices, but about a year later expanded to plan battery technologies that Google might develop.”

Now it seems that the team are “trying to advance current lithium-ion technology and the cutting-edge solid-state batteries for consumer devices, such as Glass and Google’s glucose-measuring contact lens.”

It comes as no surprise that Google is working hard to try and make a breakthrough with future battery technology. After all, its the Nexus range of smartphones and tablets that’s often slated in the media for having very poor battery life.

If you’d like to read the full report — hit the source link below.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

Come comment on this article: WSJ: Google has a small research team working on future battery technology

11
Apr

WSJ: Google’s X lab is working on batteries that last longer


Google’s X lab is developing better batteries that last longer, according to The Wall Street Journal. The company hasn’t confirmed anything yet, but seeing as most of its products require batteries to work (phones, wearables, self-driving cars, etc), the report isn’t hard to believe. This particular initiative apparently began back in 2012, when Dr. Ramesh Bhardwaj started testing Google devices’ power sources. Now, his four-man team is hard at work within the company’s semi-secret facility, trying to advance lithium-ion technology. They’re also attempting to conjure up solid-state battery tech that’s financially feasible to mass produce for consumer products.

You’re likely familiar with lithium-ion, as it’s frequently used in electronics, so let’s talk about solid-state batteries. These are smaller than typical batteries, because they transmit currents across solids rather than liquids. The absence of flammable liquid electrolytes also means they’re safer, which is why Dr. Bhardwaj’s team plans to develop the tech for Glass and even for X lab’s smart contact lenses. It will enable Glass to play more videos on a single charge and allow future smart lens owners to wear them for extended periods of time.

In addition to Dr. Bhardwaj’s group, Google reportedly has other teams working to create more efficient batteries with AllCell Technologies LLC for Project Loon and three more hardware programs. At the moment, the internet balloons are using lithium-ion power packs covered in wax and graphite for protection against cold temperatures. But WSJ says the company’s testing specially formulated materials that can withstand the cold better.

If the report is true, then Google joins a growing list of big-name tech corporations looking to improve battery tech — and hence, battery life, which has become a huge issue since new devices are becoming increasingly complex and power hungry — or to manufacture their own. Tesla is planning to open a Gigafactory to produce batteries for its EVs in the US, and Apple is reportedly forming a “large scale battery division,” as well.

Filed under: Misc, Google

Comments

Source: The Wall Street Journal

11
Apr

Google working on improving battery technology






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Battery is the fine point of any smartphone at the moment, with even the best devices sometimes getting downplayed because of the battery life; the Galaxy S6 for example being a an excellent device that is let down by sub-par battery performance.

However, Google has noticed this and is reportedly working heavily on a project to substantially improve battery life in their X labs department.

The Wall Street Journal reports that 4 engineers, including a former Apple expert, comprises the team working on increasing the battery life technology to improve user experience.

Definitely a topic that if nailed could see some substantial gains.


The post Google working on improving battery technology appeared first on AndroidGuys.

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