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4
May

Apple Hires New General Contractor for Apple Campus 2, Sparking Delay Speculation


As construction on its “spaceship” campus in Cupertino continues, Apple has hired a new general contractor, sparking rumors questioning whether the new campus will be finished by the company’s prospective 2016 completion date.

According to the Silicon Valley Business Journal, Silicon Valley company Rudolph & Sletten Inc. will take on the buildout of the Campus 2’s interior structure, a job that was previously thought to be going to DPR Construction Co. and Skanska USA, the two companies heading up the construction project.

campus2Most recent image of the ongoing construction of Apple Campus 2, from the City of Cupertino.

It’s unclear why Rudolph & Sletten is being brought in and exactly what DPR/Skanska’s involvement will be going forward. Two sources said the DPR-Skanska joint venture would still complete the core and shell — or the basic structure — of the circular building. It’s also possible that DPR and Skanska never intended to do more than the core and shell.

Neither Apple nor the three companies involved in the construction of the main ring-shaped building would comment on the involvement of a new general contractor for the interior of the building, but sources in the local construction industry that spoke to the Silicon Valley Business Journal believe the new addition could potentially point towards delays.

Campus 2 delays could potentially end up causing the cost of constructing the massive structure to skyrocket beyond its current $5 billion estimation. Prior budgeting issues caused Apple to revise its Campus 2 plans, splitting construction into two phases to save money. Phase 1 includes the main Apple campus and several buildings like an auditorium and fitness center, while phase 2 focuses on the Tantau Development, a 600,000 square foot area housing research facilities. Plans for the second phase of construction were submitted to the city back in October of 2014.

spaceshipcampustantauThe Tantau development area
In Cupertino, the base structure for the main ring-shaped campus has been completed, and walls have been going up for the last several months. Construction is also continuing on an underground parking garage and several ancillary buildings

Apple’s second campus will feature a massive 2.8 million square foot ring-shaped main building, an underground parking facility capable of accommodating 2,400 cars, a 100,000 square foot fitness center, and a 120,000 square foot auditorium. The entire campus will be outfitted with hundreds of trees for 80 percent green space, along with a central garden with outdoor dining areas.

Thus far, city officials have not received word of a potential delay from Apple, suggesting construction may still be on track. Apple plans to complete its new campus by the end of 2016.



4
May

Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 and Tab S2 9.7 announcement in June


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Samsung’s successor to their Tab S line is expected to be announced in June and will be dubbed as the Galaxy Tab S2 (Tab S2 8.0 and Tab S2 9.7 respectively). There will be a total of 4 variants of their new Tab S2, with the 8.0 and 9.7 each receiving both a W-Fi only version and an LTE version. Samsung is expected to ship these new tablets to various countries including the US, Canada, several European markets, China, Latin America, Hong Kong, Korea, and India. As for specs, here’s what you can expect:

  • 64-bit Exynos processor
  • 3GB RAM; 32GB ROM with microSD card slot
  • Android 5.0.2 Lollipop
  • Super AMOLED display with a resolution of 2048 x 1536 pixels
  • Samsung’s in-house modem with Cat. 6 LTE (300Mbps)
  • 8-megapixel primary camera, and 2.1-megapixel front facing camera

What are your guys’ thoughts on Samsung’s tablets?

source: Samobile

Come comment on this article: Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 and Tab S2 9.7 announcement in June

4
May

Google brings “Collections” to its G+ application


Google-plus

Google’s in the midst of pushing out an update for its official Google+ application via the Play Store. In terms of added functionality, this upgrade carries a handful of bug fixes as well as support for “Collections”, which allows users to group their posts by topic instead of posting at random.

In short, Collections allow you to do the following three main things:

  • Create – Start collections for your interests. Post videos, photos, and more.
  • Get Found – People can follow all of your public collections, or just the ones they like.
  • Customize – Make your collection pop with custom names and cover photos and cover photos.

To install the update, simply open up the Play Store on your device, toggle the hamburger menu by swiping in from the left-hand side of the screen, select ‘My Apps’ and click on ‘Google+’. Next, hit the update button, and the application will instantly start to download and install the upgrade from the Google Play servers. Alternatively, you can scan the QR code below to initiate the procedure.

Come comment on this article: Google brings “Collections” to its G+ application

4
May

Google announces aquisition of Timeful


 

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Google has announced that it’s now acquired Timeful and is looking to bring more intelligent scheduling together with better organization methods to its range of productivity applications, such as Calendar, Drive and Gmail.

Here’s what Google had to say about Timeful’s integration with its software suite:

The Timeful team has built an impressive system that helps you organize your life by understanding your schedule, habits and needs. You can tell Timeful you want to exercise three times a week or that you need to call the bank by next Tuesday, and their system will make sure you get it done based on an understanding of both your schedule and your priorities. We’re excited about all the ways Timeful’s technology can be applied across products like Inbox, Calendar and beyond, so we can do more of the work for you and let you focus on being creative, having fun and spending time with the people you care about.

Obviously, we won’t see these changes right away, and many of them will take place behind the scenes, but it’s great to know that they’re on the way.

Source: Google

Come comment on this article: Google announces aquisition of Timeful

4
May

Samsung now rolling out Lollipop OTA for all LTE variants of the Galaxy S5 in China


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Samsung has at last started pushing out the much-anticipated Android 5.0.1 update to all LTE variants of the Galaxy S5 located in China. In terms of added functionality, this upgrade transports the latest build of Lollipop to the handset, in addition to a multitude of bug fixes and stability improvements.

All the changes you’d expect to find are bundled into this upgrade, including support for multiple accounts, improved notifications, a smoother multitasking experience and the recently-announced Material Design guidelines.

As is customary with all manufacturer updates, the upgrade is being rolled out in stages, but if you don’t feel like waiting for a notification confirming that it’s ready for your device, you can search for the update manually.

 

Come comment on this article: Samsung now rolling out Lollipop OTA for all LTE variants of the Galaxy S5 in China

4
May

Google’s latest acquisition will help make Calendar, Inbox and other apps ‘smarter’


Inbox by Gmail 710p featured

Google recently introduced Inbox by Gmail with the ambitious goal of making our email experience smarter than ever before. Now it seems this is only the beginning of Google’s plans for helping its users stay better organized. In an official blog post, Google has now announced the acquisition of the Timeful app and the team behind it.

For those who haven’t heard of Timeful, the iOS-only app aims to make its users lives easier by putting scheduling, to-do lists, and the calendar all in one place while helping users make better use of their time by acting as an intelligent assistant that can help schedule their days based on deadlines, time available, and much more.

you tell Timeful what you want to accomplish, and it helps you fit these things into your hectic schedule.

What exactly does that mean? Basically, you tell Timeful what you want to accomplish, and it helps you fit these things into your hectic schedule. For example, you inform the app that you want to lift weights at least three times a week, that you need to buy an anniversary gift for your wife by Thursday, and that you want to at least get thirty minutes of cardio in every day. Timeful than examines your schedule and helps you figure out how to squeeze it all in. While the Timeful app will continue to be offered for the time being, Timeful’s team will be focusing its attention on “new projects at Google”. Google specifically mentions Inbox, Calendar and ‘beyond’ as some of the products that will benefit from the Timeful acquisition.

While the Timeful app will continue to be offered for now, Timeful’s team will be focusing its attention on “new projects at Google”. Google specifically mentions Inbox, Calendar and ‘beyond’ as some of the products that will benefit from the Timeful acquisition. We are certainly excited to see how Google utilizes the technology behind Timeful in the (hopefully) not too distant future.



4
May

FCC Chairman on why lawsuits won’t beat net neutrality this time


Companies have been gunning for the FCC’s open internet rules since the very moment news crossed the wires, and their latest move involved pushing for a stay — a sort of legal “not so fast!” — on the classification of the internet as a public utility. While visiting TechCrunch Disrupt in New York this morning, FCC chairman Tom Wheeler reaffirmed his belief in a victory for the internet, saying he was “pretty confident” in the outcome of the cases and that his plan for now was simply “not to lose”.

If the sight of cable companies and content providers putting up a fight comes as any kind of shock, you haven’t been paying attention. Immediately after the Commission revealed its new set of rules, players like AT&T and Verizon hastily issued public policy blog posts denouncing the move, and it was long after that before the lawsuits started rolling in en masse.

When asked if he expected as many challenges as he got, Wheeler was blunt. “Sure,” he said. “The Big Dogs will sue on the things they don’t like and it’s their right.” Still, he doesn’t seem all too worried about the matter. Wheeler explained that the Verizon decision that overturned the 2010 Net Neutrality rules was based on the concept that the FCC tried to impose Title II-like requirements without actually coming out and saying these companies are Title II common carriers. Even with parts of the Telecommunications Act subject to forbearance here — meaning some things just won’t apply to keep regulatory meddling to a minimum — there’s just no ambiguity anymore. That extra bit of legal specificity is enough to keep Wheeler awfully optimistic about the Open Internet’s chances, but you know its opponents are going to throw whatever they can at the plan in hopes that something icky sticks.

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4
May

HBO switches to streaming-only review policy starting right now


HBO is trying super hard to dislodge Game of Thrones’ crown as the “most pirated TV show” of modern times. It recently launched HBO Now, a non-cable-based streaming service, and today the company announced it would stop providing reviewers with DVDs containing episodes of its shows prior to their air dates. Instead, HBO will give reviewers early access to these episodes via a secure streaming service. The streaming policy starts this week with three new episodes of Veep, but it was spurred by a recent Thronesian leak: In April, four unaired Game of Thrones episodes found their way online, all of them reportedly linked to a review DVD. “Amazingly enough, it wasn’t until just recently that a DVD was leaked online,” HBO EVP of Corporate Communications Quentin Schaffer said in an email to reviewers.

Filed under: Misc, HD

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4
May

Fugoo Tough speaker – The absolute best speaker available


With literally hundreds of different sizes, brands, shapes, etc, buying a portable Bluetooth speaker can be rather intimidating and confusing, especially if you care about getting value out of the product you buy.  With so many manufacturers of Bluetooth speakers and so many different kinds, you can easily assume that Bluetooth speakers are a money making machine.

Bose, Beats, Sony, Samsung, Lg, Logitech, etc, all make speakers, and each focus on sound first, followed by durability, battery life, design, function and features like Bluetooth, NFC, and speaker phone.

Most people head down to their local Best Buy, Target, or Amazon.com to research and purchase their Bluetooth speaker.  In noisy environments, it is hard to pick up which speaker sounds the best, and in many cases customers go simply off of loudness and bass to make their decision when in store, or they have to rely on user reviews from amazon.com.  For the readers of Androidguys, I have a treat for you.

The tough Fugoo speaker is the absolute best speaker you can buy for the money.  I will explain why in the review.  Fugoo, or Fugu, is a pufferfish that is prepared for food consumption in Japan as well as a very few select restaurants in the US.  The pufferfish is highly poisonous, and if it is not served properly, it can kill the people who consume it.  When you think of Fugu, you think of something that takes many hours of practice to be able to serve it to consumers.  You also think of things like, premium, rare, high-quality, and tough.  And that is why I believe the Fugoo speaker is the last Bluetooth speaker you will buy.

Fugoo sells 6 speakers, but of those six, they are derived from 2 core models.  You have the standard core which I will be reviewing, and you have the XL(larger size) which I hope to review in the future.  The Fugoo comes in three different designs, the Style, Sport, and Rugged.  I chose to review the Rugged model, as I tend to explore the outdoors in sunny San Diego and I want a speaker that can handle the elements which Fugoo claims it can.

Sound

First and foremost, the most important factor when choosing a speaker is the quality of sound.  When people think of a manufacturer that puts sound first they usually think of Bose.  I am one of the customers who owned a few Bose speakers, and generally I would say they do offer the best sound quality.  All other speakers usually sound pretty good, or good enough, and when picking a speaker you can balance all of the features that are most important when making your final decision.

In comes Fugoo.  There is absolutely no compromise on sound.  You can see the 6 speakers through the grilles on the device, 2 speakers on the front and back, and one on each of the sides.  When listening to music, you do not need to worry about which way the speaker is facing.  It pumps out loud and quality music in each direction.  When watching movies with my Samsung Galaxy Tab S, I place the speaker behind the tablet, and if there were a movie theater experience on a tablet, the Fugoo would be it.  You can feel the bass, hear the 3D sound, and hear every word because the speaker is simply loud and clear.  Without getting over analytical with sound data charts, I can say this speaker is better than the Bose Soundlink Mini which is a direct competitor.  The Bose speaker was the best sounding speaker that I had heard until the Fugoo.  Both sound great, but the six speakers on the Fugoo just give a better listening experience.  Music and movies truly come alive when listening to the Fugoo.

fugoo-tough-shell-side-angle-640x427-c

Battery

At 50% loudness, Fugoo claims that the speaker will last an astounding 40 hours.  In comparison, the Bose Soundlink Mini gets an estimated 10 hours of use.  I can confirm that the Fugoo absolutely demolishes the competition when it comes to battery life.  I received this speaker two months ago, and the reason why it has taken me so long to write this review is because I was not only testing in-use battery life, but I was testing standby battery life.

I personally believe this is the best portable Bluetooth speaker you can buy in this price range.  Before writing this review and recommendation, I wanted a real life experience in how I would use the speaker so I could pass that on to you.

I never quite made 40 hours of use with the Fugoo speaker, but I did get over 30 hours.  That can be attributed to me cranking the volume up because I enjoyed this speaker so much.  It truly brought my music to life when I was cooking, taking a shower, hanging out at the dog park, and camping on an overnight trip with a few friends.  I never once worried about recharging the speaker until it warned me when the battery was running low.  Listening at 50% volume for 40 hours just wasn’t an option for me because this speaker sounded too great to keep it quiet.

After testing the in-use battery life, I tested the standby battery life.  I went 30 days without touching my speaker after a full charge.  When I went to use it after 30 days, the speaker had 75% battery life remaining.  The battery is simply incredible.

I would imagine most of the weight of this speaker, it is heavy for such a small device(1.4 pounds), comes from the six speakers and huge battery.  Either way, I don’t mind the extra weight because this device lasts so long.  No other speaker comes close when it comes to battery life.  Sound quality can be debated until blue in the face, as sound quality is highly subjective, but battery life speaks for itself.  No other speaker comes close in matching battery life.

 

Durability

When you spend 200-300 dollars on an accessory, you would definitely like it to be durable.  No one appreciates an accessory falling apart.  The Fugoo is best-in-class when it comes to durability.  I tested the “Tough” version and by all means was it tough.  The Tough speaker is built with a heavy-duty cage and frame designed to withstand the elements.  My speaker was rained on, dropped, thrown in a backpack, run under water from the sink, dropped in the sand at the beach, and it still worked perfectly.  There was not even a hint of this speaker breaking down after two months of solid usage.

Usually when you buy a portable speaker for outdoor usage,  the manufacturer puts build quality over sound quality.  In Fugoo’s case, the speakers build quality and sound quality are equal.  You will not find a more durable speaker than the Fugoo, and you will not find a better sounding speaker than the Fugoo.

fugoo water

 

Accessories

Since the Fugoo was designed to be multi-purpose, they offer a wide range of accessories to go with the speaker.  They offer a bike mount, a strap mount( to tie the speaker to any object you want, or a multi-mount which can be used to use a tripod, rope/carabiner, or belt clip with this speaker.  In addition to the different mounts, Fugoo also offers a remote control with a built-in bottle opener for those outdoor trips.

When you’re done with the outdoors and want to change the look of your speaker for home use, Fugoo also offers a wide range of cases.  These cases are not designed to go over the Tough speaker, they are designed to replace the tough case.  An allen wrench is provided in the packaging which will allow you to remove the core of the speaker from the case.  Once removed you can easily replace the tough cover with a sport jacket, or style jackets which come in a multitude of colors.  Your outdoor speaker doesn’t have to look rugged when you use it at home.

Conclusion

With a starting price of $229.99 for the Fugoo Tough speaker, it puts this in a class with the likes of the Bose Soundlink Mini, Ultimate Ears Boom, Beats Pill 2.0, and JBL Pulse, and without a doubt I have absolutely no hesitation in recommending this speaker above all others.   On top of that, the speaker is incredibly easy to use.  Once you pair the Fugoo to your phone/tablet it stays paired and will play music whenever you turn it on.  Fugoo has managed to create the best sounding speaker, best battery life speaker, and most durable speaker on the market today.


The Fugoo speaker has been reviewed by many other sites, magazines, etc. and all give it high reviews.  You may not see this speakers in stores which means you won’t be able to test it in store, but trust me, don’t waste your money on anything else.  Spend it wisely and pick up the Fugoo Tough speaker.  You will not be disappointed and you will not need to buy any other portable speakers.  

Fugoo

Fugoo Tough on Amazon

Fugoo Sport on Amazon

Fugoo Style on Amazon

The post Fugoo Tough speaker – The absolute best speaker available appeared first on AndroidGuys.

4
May

Google Plus introduces new Pinterest-like feature, Collections


collections-1

It’s been a year since Vic Gundotra left Google+, and since that time we’ve heard numerous reports about how Google+ is dying, a sentiment that has continued even into recent times. Despite these claims, Google seems hard at work in expanding G+’s feature set and in its latest move is adding a brand new feature called Collections.

So what is collections? Basically, we are looking at Google’s take on Pinterest. Google+ users can now create a collection of posts (with text, video, images, etc) based on a specific interest. These collections can then be shared with the general public, privately, or with certain specific users. After creating your first collection, your profile will add a new tab that lets others easily find and follow all your collections. Collections can also be customized with a color and header image of your choice.

collections-2

Collections will be available both for web, Android, and web users. Keep in mind that back-end access is being turned on for a number of people, but it has yet to reach everyone.

We are certainly excited by the feature, as it should make it much easier to find conversations in topics that actually matter to us. What do you think of the new feature? Something you are excited for or not really?



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