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Moovit’s newest feature learns your routine, tells you the Best Way Today
Anytime a developer updates their app, users get really excited. Who doesn’t love to see their favorite app get better with new features? And Moovit users have been able to experience the excitement multiple times over the last few months. Two months ago, Moovit introduced real-time step-by-step directions before, in January, users in over 110 cities cities with bike sharing systems were able to locate stations from within the app due to Bike Share integration. This month, the service is going live with yet another new feature. Moovit’s Best Way Today considers a user’s travel habits to specific locations and offers the best possible route to get there with minimal delay.
Alex Mackenzie Torres, Moovit CMO, says Best Way Today is “just the beginning of a set of features that offer greater personalization within the Moovit app.” Best Way Today was among the most requested features by users.
Best Way Today allows Moovit users to set their favorite locations, like their home or work, as well as their typical departure and arrival times to and from each location, and get the best route for their commute each day based on the day’s current conditions. With this new feature, Moovit users can receive a pop-up notification each day prior to their usual departure time from home, work or any other favorite location, letting them know exactly which route to take, without even having to open the app.
Another smaller item included with today’s Moovit update is proximity notifications. When you’re at or nearby a preferred station, Moovit will alert you when the next bus is arriving.
Both Best Way Today and proximity notifications are available today on the Moovit app from Google Play.
Moovit Releases New Intuitive Feature “Best Way Today”
Best Way Today Provides the Best Routes Between Users’ Favorite Locations Each Day
San Francisco, CA – February 4, 2016 – Moovit, the world’s leading local transit app, is today releasing a powerful and personalized new feature on Android, Best Way Today. This upgrade to the app enables Moovit users to make more valuable use of their time by automatically providing the most updated routes for users who typically travel the same route between favorite locations.
A large percentage of users ride the same route every day, but may not be aware that there are often multiple ways of getting from their home to work and back. And because of variables like unusual traffic, subway strikes, and street closures due to construction, transit delays cannot be avoided.
Best Way Today automatically finds the best way for users to avoid disruptions on their commute, considering today’s best route to work may be different than tomorrow’s. Best Way Today allows Moovit users to set their favorite locations, like their home or work, as well as their typical departure and arrival times to and from each location, and get the best route for their commute each day based on the day’s current conditions. With this new feature, Moovit users can receive a pop-up notification each day prior to their usual departure time from home, work or any other favorite location, letting them know exactly which route to take, without even having to open the app.
“Best Way Today is just the beginning of a set of features that offer greater personalization within the Moovit app,” said Alex Mackenzie Torres, Moovit CMO. “It is one of the top 5 most requested features by our users and we have a strong product roadmap in place to continue to provide an even smarter and more intuitive experience for our users.”
In addition to Best Way Today, the favorite lines and stations feature will also be updated. Now, when users are within a close proximity to their preferred station on their favorite line, they will receive a notification about when the next bus is arriving, whether you’re walking towards the station or waiting inside.
Best Way Today is now available for Android, and will be available on iOS in the coming weeks.
The Moovit app has everything you need to travel on public transport the smartest, speediest and easiest way possible. By combining information from public transport operators and authorities with live information from the user community, Moovit offers travellers a real-time picture and the fastest and most comfortable routes. Moovit users can also send active reports about their travel experience, such as bus congestion levels, cleanliness, and more. The more people use Moovit, the more real-time information concerning buses and trains is distributed. Live information received from travellers offers all users improved route plans and more accurate estimates about arrival times. Moovit is available and free to download in over 800 cities in 60 countries worldwide for over 30 million users.
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Nearly One-Third of iPhone Users Still Have 4-Inch Screens
The latest data from Mixpanel shows that approximately 32.22% of active iPhone users still have a 4-inch screen. That is the same screen size as the so-called “iPhone 5se” that Apple is expected to announce at its rumored March 15 event.
Apple has released three iPhone models with 4-inch screens since 2013, including the iPhone 5, iPhone 5c, and iPhone 5s, and some customers still feel these smartphones have the best screen size for pocketability and one-handed usage.
Apple’s newest 4-inch smartphone, the iPhone 5s, represented just under 20 percent of current iPhones in use, trailed by the iPhone 5 at 7.53 percent and the plastic-backed iPhone 5c at 5.66 percent. The numbers fluctuate slightly in real time.
In the company’s latest earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that 60 percent of older-generation iPhone users have yet to upgrade to the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s, or iPhone 6s Plus.
Right now, customers that want a 4-inch iPhone have to settle for the over two-year-old iPhone 5s’s outdated tech specs, and the smartphone also lacks many new features such as Apple Pay, 3D Touch, and Live Photos.
For that reason, the “iPhone 5se” with a rumored 4-inch screen, Apple’s newest A9 chip, Live Photos, and purported price of around $500 may prove to be a more popular option among prospective iPhone buyers.
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Bing Search on Android update improves price comparison
The Bing Search app for Android has been updated with new features including a price comparison tool and a handy deals finder.
Bing Search for Android aims to help users find things to do without the need of multiple apps, and now the experience has been upgraded with improved functionality.
A blog post from Bing offers up some more details on the latest additions to the app, one of which is a price comparison tool that works using a smartphone’s camera. Pointing a mobile at the barcode of a product will see the app search its database for better prices at other stores. Customer ratings are also displayed and the search supports major retailers including Amazon, Walmart and Target.
Bing Search’s makers say that it’s now easier to browse gas stations and their prices, too. A simple search using the app will list prices from GasBuddy and directions to those spots.
The last of the major updates is the Deals tool, which does exactly what you’d expect. Bing Search can now find deals near you, making it the ideal companion for shopping addicts.
Bing Search is free to download over on the Play Store, so we recommend you take a look if you’re a bargain hunter.
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Tim Cook Talks iPhone Sales, Apple TV, Campus 2, and More at Employee Town Hall Meeting
Following Apple’s first quarter earnings report, Apple executives hosted a Town Hall meeting with Apple employees to answer questions and to divulge a few details about the company’s future plans. 9to5Mac has shared highlights of what was covered at the event. While much of what was said was reiterating information that was shared during the earnings call, there are a few tidbits worth noting.
When it comes to the iPhone and the rumor that Apple has perhaps reached “peak iPhone,” Cook said the device is the “greatest business of the future” with growth potential in key emerging markets like India and China. He said Apple does not need to launch a less expensive device with pared-down features to entice buyers in these markets, as research suggests people will spend more for a better experience. These comments relate directly to the upcoming “iPhone 5se,” which some rumors have suggested will be positioned as a less powerful, lower-end device, though not a cheap one by general smartphone standards.
On the Apple TV and tvOS, Cook said the two products point towards a “bright” future for Apple, but he didn’t mention how Apple might expand its presence in the living room going forward. tvOS is Apple’s way of giving content providers the tools to offer streaming television solutions to customers after having failed to launch its own streaming service due to difficulties with negotiations. The most recent TV-related rumors suggest Apple is exploring the possibility of original content, following in the footsteps of Netflix and Amazon.
Cook also reportedly expressed excitement over future products coming from the company’s software, services, and hardware divisions. In the next few months, Apple is expected to announce the iPhone 5se, the iPad Air 3, new bands for the Apple Watch, and perhaps new Retina MacBooks and Retina MacBook Pros. Later in the year, Apple is also expected to introduce the highly-anticipated iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.
He also teased “far off” hardware products coming beyond 2016, perhaps hinting at the company’s work on the Apple Car or its exploration of virtual and augmented reality. Recent rumors suggest Apple is prototyping virtual reality headsets similar to the Oculus Rift.
The last bit of interesting information was on Apple Campus 2, the company’s second “spaceship” campus that’s under development in Cupertino. Construction appears to be on track to be finished at the end of 2016, as Cook says the first employees will move into the campus by the end of January 2017. He also said the new underground auditorium will allow Apple to hold events on its grounds instead of at venues in San Francisco and other parts of the Bay Area.
The meeting also included more mundane information on upcoming time-off benefits for Apple employees, flagging iPad sales, new solutions for retaining employee talent, and Apple’s supply chain, which can be read at 9to5Mac.
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See the new tricks in ‘Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD’
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD lands on the Wii U on March 4th, complete with a lineup of new gameplay treats. The first is a new item, the Ghost Lantern, which lights up when it’s near an evil spirit known as a Poe. The Ghost Lantern should make the game’s Poe soul-seeking quest much easier, Nintendo says in a press release. This is different than the standard Lantern from the original Twilight Princess, which lights the way and wards off nasty beasties throughout the game.
Twilight Princess HD also features Hero Mode, a new difficulty setting that makes Link take double the damage, removes all heart drops and changes how Rupees operate — Link’s wallet will hold more currency, but if he hits his limit and finds more Rupees in a treasure chest, the gems won’t return to that chest any longer. The Wii U Gamepad displays the map and inventory.
The Wolf Link amiibo opens up the Cave of Shadows challenge arena, as we learned in January, and some of the data stored in that figurine will transfer over to the new Legend of Zelda Wii U game set to drop this year.
Bing’s big mobile search update comes to Android
Last fall, Microsoft rolled out a major update to its Bing app for the iPhone. The big change was the realization that searching on a smartphone usually means you want immediate answers to questions while you’re out and about, so Bing put all the data from its Knowledge and Action Graph right up front. In our testing, it felt like a superior search experience and something comparable with what Google’s doing with its own mobile app. Now, Microsoft has pushed that new experience to Android phones with the new Bing app that just hit Google Play. Whether or not you’ll want to switch it up from the default Google search experience remains to be seen, but it’s an app that’s at least worth taking a look at.
The app is essentially identical to its iPhone counterpart: it understands natural language queries like “what is the population of New York City?” and gives you an answer without you having to dig through a list of links. Searching for a city brings up local info, travel tips, nearby news, and a list of apps that lets you perform actions you might be interested in taking (like booking a hotel through Expedia or Hotels.com). Voice search is right up front, and there’s plenty of one-touch access to local points of interest around you like restaurants, movies and various things to do.
It remains a very solid search experience, and Microsoft rolled out a few new features today that weren’t present in the earlier iPhone app. When you tap the “gas stations” button in the “near me” section of the app, you’ll see gas price data from GasBuddy. Once you find the cheapest local option, you can just tap and get directions in Google Maps (or in Apple Maps on the iPhone).
Microsoft also added a bar code scanner so you can do on-the-spot comparison shopping to see if you can find an item cheaper online, something sure to infuriate local retailers who catch you doing it. On the iPhone 6s or 6s Plus, you can access the barcode scanner via 3D touch on the home screen icon; a long press on the big search icon inside the Bing app will get you there on Android, and older iPhone users will find it under the new “deals” menu.
Speaking of the deals section, you can go there to find… well, deals for stores near you. Your phone will use your current location to find retailers that are in the area and pull up any ways for you to save money right there. For iPhone users, none of today’s changes are all that radical, but it’s an entirely new and improved experience if you’re on Android. If you want to give it a shot, the update is available for both platforms now.
How to watch this week’s presidential primary debates
Primary season is officially underway, but don’t think that the deluge of debates is over. There will be many, many, many, more chances for the candidates to face off on stage. Tonight at 9pm ET Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders will follow up their razor thin race in Iowa by bringing their sales pitches to New Hampshire. With Martin O’Malley officially out of the race, it will be down to just the two front runners. You can watch the debate live on MSNBC and at MSNBC.com.
Saturday night, at 9pm ET, its the Republicans turn to put on a debate for the citizens of New Hampshire. You’ll be able to watch that on your local ABC affiliate or online at abcnew.go.com/live.
And, of course, before those showdowns kick off, make sure to get caught up on the candidates positions on the most pressing tech and science issues of 2016 in our election guide. And make sure to join in the conversation on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Ello, Google+, BBS or semaphore using the hashtag #engadgetelectionguide.
Mozilla will stop supporting Firefox OS for smartphones in May
Mozilla’s Firefox OS isn’t strictly speaking dead, but it may as well be as far as smartphones are concerned. The company announced via email that it would stop supporting the mobile OS after releasing Firefox OS 2.6 (currently slated for the end of May), a move that’ll free up staff that will try to figure out how exactly Firefox OS fits into the growing internet-of-things scene.
This announcement isn’t without precedent, either. Ari Jaaksi, Mozilla’s SVP of Connected Devices, said at the Mozlando developer event last December that the company’s great smartphone experiment would soon draw to a close. “Firefox OS proved the flexibility of the Web, scaling from low-end smartphones all the way up to HD TVs,” he noted at the time. “However, we weren’t able to offer the best user experience possible and so we will stop offering Firefox OS smartphones through carrier channels.”
Now, Mozilla might be done developing Firefox OS for smartphones, but it’s not closing the door on third-party app developers just yet. While the company will stop accepting Android, desktop, and tablet apps for inclusion in its Marketplace, it’ll continue to accept Firefox OS apps “into 2017”. That’s hardly a surprise since Mozilla has a few other Firefox OS devices in the mix — Panasonic has a slew of smart TVs running Mozilla’s software, and the company admits that at least two other products (perhaps a keyboard and a TV dongle) have been pushed through an internal “Innovation Process”.
Gutsy as the whole idea is, the idea of Firefox OS as a mobile rival to Android and iOS seemed doomed from the beginning. The platform’s HTML5 foundation meant you could never really have the sorts of rich app experiences other platforms take for granted (though, in fairness, web app quality and performance improved dramatically since Firefox OS’s launch). Ultimately, the idea was to build a foundation for ultra low-cost smartphones for developing economies. Noble, certainly, but maybe not financially wise when owning a basic Android device costs less than ever.
Source: Mozilla Community
Deal: honor 5X with $25 Newegg gift card for just $200
The honor 5X is already one of the best smartphones available if you’re on a budget, and the latest deal on Newegg puts the device at the lowest price we’ve seen thus far. For a limited time, you can pick up an honor 5X from Newegg for $199.99 and receive a $25 Newegg gift card with your purchase. $200 is a very low price for what you’re getting here, so considering you’ll also score $25 in Newegg credit, this is a really good deal.
But what exactly does the 5X bring to the table? For starters, it comes with a fast rear-mounted fingerprint sensor and an all-metal chassis that makes the device feel very premium. It sports a 5.5-inch Full HD display, an octa-core Snapdragon 616 processor, plenty of on-board storage and microSD expansion up to an additional 128 gigabytes. The software may not be for everyone, but that’s easily fixable on Android. honor also says it’s committed to bringing timely software updates to the device, and we’ve already witnessed the first effort on that front late last month. If you’d like some more information on the 5X before you pull the trigger, check out our full review.
Interested in this deal? It’s only going on for a limited time, so follow the deal link below before it’s too late!
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Next: Best cheap Android phones (January 2016)