Google is integrating Gmail with Google Wallet so that users can send payments as a mail attachment, even if the recipient doesn't have a Gmail address.
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Google is integrating Gmail with Google Wallet so that users can send payments as a mail attachment, even if the recipient doesn't have a Gmail address.
We’re used to Google’s mobile search apps letting us ask questions as we would with real people, but the desktop has usually been quite stiff. That’s changing today: Google is bringing conversation-like voice search to our computers through Chrome, with no typing required. Web denizens just have to say “okay, Google,” ask their question, and get back a spoken response similar to what they’d hear on their phones. The company hasn’t said just how soon Chrome will incorporate the new voice features, however.
With Nearly Half Of All Jackthreads Orders Coming Through Mobile, The Company Launches A New iPad App
Jackthreads is a Thrillist company that features clothes and accessories for men. The style is all over the place – goofy t-shirts sit next to nice blazers and jackets – but it’s decidedly urbo-hipster in the design and sizing. Full disclosure: I try my damnedest not to buy their stuff but I still find my self idly clicking through and buying age-inappropriate streetwear. It’s pretty addicting. That said, they’re going gangbusters. The company will see $ 75-100 million in revenue this year and their iPhone app just passed 2 million downloads. The app has been a consistent top free lifestyle app and it pushes millions of pageviews and sales sessions. “It’s a huge driver for the business in every single way,” said CEO of Thrillist Media Group, Ben Lerer. “The native app experience killed for us,” he said. “It drove tens of millions of dollars of revenue.” They have just launched a new iPad app that acts as a catalog for their daily deals and pushes notifications when new sales are added. Lerer is excited about the new platform and has seen mobile usage explode. “We anticipate the highest conversion rate on any channel,” he said. “I know I’m buying more frequently on the iPad. Mobile is a huge driver for the business in every single way.” Given that Jackthreads is one of Thrillist’s most profitable properties and thanks to solid growth over the past few years, it’s clear that Lerer and team have found the goose that lays the lightweight golden track jacket with scorpion detail on the back.
AT&T launched a new wireless subsidiary called Aio Wireless on Thursday that offers phones like the iPhone 5 with no annual contract.
Here’s a little noodle-scratcher for you fellow mobile hardware nerds to ponder this evening. This little Motorola Mobility beauty, brandishing the model number XT1058, recently passed through the FCC and left the customary paper trail in its wake. Alright, maybe calling it a beauty is a bit of a stretch, but here’s the kicker: the rudimentary sketch included with the listing looks bears a striking resemblance to a slew of earlier leaked images that purportedly showed off Motorola’s secretive X Phone. Consider the alignment of those three circular elements on the back — those bits match up rather nicely with the camera, LED flash, and Motorola logo/button as seen in images of an unreleased smartphone originally circulated by the team at Tinhte.vn. Even the seemingly curved section along the top edge where the device’s headphone jack lives and the placement of what appears to be the sleep/wake button are spot-on when compared to those leaked photos. Having a hard time visualizing all that? Here’s a side by side view to give you a sense of the similarities: Of course, this doesn’t bring us any closer to figuring out what the device is actually capable of — all the FCC’s listing reveals is that this thing sports radios for Bluetooth 4.0, 802.11ac and NFC. It could be that this is the first regulatory appearance of the so-called XFON, a device that noted gadget leaker @EvLeaks posted photos of earlier this month. After all, the XT1058 has been found to support AT&T’s particular LTE bands, and the XFON’s IMEI label clearly calls it out as an AT&T device. At this point no one (save for the lucky chump who snapped those photos in the first place) can definitively say whether or not the XFON and this curious AT&T device are the same, but it’s distinctly possible. There are a few cosmetic similarities between the two — namely the Motorola logo stamped on the top left corner, the shape of the speaker grille, and the placement of the indicator LED and the front-facing camera. Don’t pay too much attention to the chunky chassis though, as it’s not uncommon for non-final hardware to undergo testing clad in patently ugly shells. You may recall that BlackBerry’s Dev Alpha and Beta devices lived in similarly unflattering boxes before the innards were officially unveiled at a series of simultaneous launch events back in January. For all of
One interesting thing to watch is how social networking platforms mature divergently as businesses around the world.
Sina Weibo, the public microblogging platform that has had a huge impact on online discourse in China, is veering down a path toward e-commerce and transactions after Alibaba took a stake worth $ 586 million in it last month. The platform is one of the two more influential social networks in China today, with the other being Tencent’s messaging app WeChat.
Just about every gamer we know has wanted to alter a game world on the spot, whether it’s to cheat, fix game mechanics or experiment. Special Stage Systems’ Ming Mecca system is built entirely around that concept — and will definitely appeal to anyone with a fondness for analog electronics. Knobs and switches on its World Core synthesizer module adjust the game machine’s maps, graphics, characters and even physics through voltage tweaks. Players only have to load assets on an SD card if they’d like a different look, and they even have access to the firmware and schematics if they want to go completely off the beaten path. Input is just as unconventional: a Control Core turns NES-compatible gamepads into signal generators that can be used just as easily for music making as for playing. Ming Mecca isn’t expected to ship until summer 2014, and it won’t be cheap at an estimated $ 999 for a World Core and $ 350 for the Control Core. Even so, we’re sorely tempted to splurge — it’s not often that a gadget scratches so many of our nostalgic itches at once.
Source: Special Stage Systems
If Google is worried about Google Glass being too “nerdy”, they probably wouldn’t be sending people rockin’ the Glass into the heart of the most gloriously nerdy thing in the world, the Large Hadron Collider.
Fortunately, Google doesn’t seem to care (nor should they) if their amazing little experiment gets a few knocks along the way. As a result, we get videos like this one.
Space is a dangerous world. Debris is flying around everywhere, including small space rocks (read: bits of asteroid or meteoroid), which means that the International Space Station is constantly prone to getting hit by these small objects, and when you’re traveling at 4.8 miles per second, even small objects can have a big impact. ISS
Data donated by Facebook users to Stephen Wolfram yields interesting patterns that may reveal how people change over time.
The tenth anniversary of the iTunes Store is looming on April 28th, and Apple wants to do more for the occasion than treat itself to a nice dinner. It just launched an interactive Decade of iTunes timeline (within iTunes itself, naturally) to remind us how far its music service has come since 2003. While the retrospective includes the expected sales milestones, media links and plugs for iPods, it’s surprisingly detailed: you, too, can learn that Morcheeba rocked the album charts when iTunes reached Scandinavia. Apple has fiercer competition these days that not surprisingly goes unacknowledged, but it’s good to have at least some context for Cupertino’s more recent achievements. Catch a taste of that early iTunes Store vibe after the break.
Via: The Loop
Source: iTunes Store
A Yale scientist says a rock that crashed through the roof of a home in Wolcott was a meteorite.
We didn’t find much in the way of news at the Inside 3D Printing Conference and Expo here in NYC (and, we’re sad to say, our press badges were just old-fashioned 2D printed), but there was plenty to look at, thankfully. Between the slew of business and consumer devices and the boatload of printed objects, the event was part business conference, part art show. And while the real star was the still-fresh world of desktop home printers, plenty of companies brought out their big-gun industrial devices (including at least one really sweet giant 3D scanner). Peep the gallery below to check out some of the eye candy from the event.
Filed under: Peripherals
Editor’s note: Ben Horowitz is co-founder and partner of Andreessen Horowitz.
Perhaps the most common mistake that I see a technical founder make when building her sales organization is that she applies strategies to the sales-hiring process that work when building the engineering team. This may sound shocking, but sales people are different from engineers, and treating them like engineers does not work well at all.
HopStop, the location services app that helps you navigate the wacky world of public transportation, has today unveiled its biggest product launch ever, with the release of HopStop Live! The service is integrated with HopStop’s default iPhone app, as well as having its own standalone app called “Live!” The apps let users crowd-source information in real-time about delays to subways or trains, giving even more clarity to the morning commute. HopStop already accounts for delays that are marked on the MTA’s web site for service disruptions, but that isn’t an all-encompassing view. Many times, trains will be delayed because of police investigations or accidents, and the corresponding delay alert doesn’t appear online for many hours after, or not at all. Still, these delays can really bork up a day, and so HopStop is letting its massive user base start calling out issues for fellow users. Though crowd-sourcing public transit delays has been done before — most notably by Waze and NextTrain, along with some other mobile apps — HopStop brings a new level of scale to the recipe. As of today, HopStop has announced that its userbase has surpassed 2 million monthly active users, and the app access data points for 700 transit agencies, 20,000 lines, and 750,000 stops. Here’s what CEO Joe Meyer had to say about it: The real-time public transportation space has attracted so much attention over the past twelve months with a countless number of new transit apps all professing to have the answer to real-time. The problem with the vast majority of these is that as impressive and headline-grabbing as their goals or claims may be –they all lack the critical ingredient for any crowd-sourced service to be useful –a big enough crowd of endemic users. Over the past nine years, HopStop has grown to be the biggest independent player in the transit routing market, and today’s launch of HopStop Live! will leverage our large user base and strong commitment to product excellence to define the future of real-time public transportation information. The main goal is that users will build and foster mini-communities around their particular commute, keeping each other in the know about delays and service disruptions in a way that official lines of communication are too slow for. For now, the HopStop Live! service is only available for iPhone, but the company is working on rolling it out to other major platforms in
This week if you’re in Google’s neighborhood in Calofornia, you might be seeing one eye-murdering iteration of an electric vehicle swinging your way, complete with a Batman symbol on its hood and massive plastic eyelashes above its headlights. This is the vinyl-wrapped Tesla Model S late April Fool’s Joke the Google executives other than Sergey
Panasonic’s support for WiFi in its Micro Four Thirds cameras has so far skewed toward the high end. Thanks to a new filing at Taiwan’s National Communications Commission, though, we know the entry level should be covered as well. The regulator has been looking at a DMC-GF6 camera with with built-in WiFi, hinting that the Lumix GF5′s sequel will make networking one of its centerpiece upgrades. Other clues aren’t quite as forthcoming — there’s nothing imaging-related at the NCC, so we don’t know if the GF6 is an optical revolution or another subtle refresh. It’s mostly safe to presume that Panasonic will watch out for celebrity leaks this time around.
Filed under: Cameras
Source: VR-Zone (translated)
Perhaps the second screen experience for HBO megahit show A Game of Thrones provided through Xbox 360′s SmartGlass functionality and HBO Go’s iPad app isn’t enough for you? And maybe you want a bit more of a George R. R. Martin touch to your Game of Thrones book companions? This week’s release of “A Game of Ice and Fire” for Android — the previously iOS-only Game of Thrones app that acts as an “official guide” to the series and its myriad characters / relationships / political struggles / etc. — is clearly for you. And yes, it goes beyond what just the show covers; it can even be customized for spoilers based around how far you are.
The initial cost to download is nothing and comes with several characters as well as a companion for the first book, but for books two through five you’ll need to grab the upgrades: $ 1 apiece, or $ 5 for those four plus an additional “InfoPack” which would otherwise cost $ 2 by itself. Those $ 2 “InfoPacks” include, “new characters and places and additional data and background info” (whatever that means), and more are expected in the future. The third season of A Game of Thrones kicks off on March 31st, and wouldn’t you know it, this app is perfectly timed to accompany it. That’s what we call synergy. Head to the Google Play link in the source link and grab it for free, or risk *paying the iron price.
*Thankfully, in this case, that price is just potentially looking ignorant about A Game of Thrones. So … not that big of a thing, actually.
Source: Google Play
When we first heard about Daniel Epstein‘s plan to bring his Unreasonable Institute startup accelerator to the high seas with a 100 day, around-the-world sailing expedition called ‘Unreasonable At Sea,’ it frankly seemed like a pretty crazy idea. Let alone the risk of pirates (the real kind, not the entrepreneurial kind), there are so many possible things that could go wrong for the 11 startups aboard the ship — bad Internet connections, seasickness, homesickness, and the like.
President pushes proposal to fund R&D with money from oil and gas leases on federal lands.
President Obama today made the case for using money from oil and gas leases in the Outer Continental Shelf to fund research on alternatives to fossil fuels.
The NASA Mars rover Curiosity is running again after engineers put it to sleep for a day this week to protect it from a powerful solar storm.
Facebook’s redesigned News Feed may help keep users flooded with information from quitting the social network, anlaysts said.
Some school administrators are testing a bold idea to integrate the multitude of systems that are used to store student data, giving teachers a single view of how students are performing and allowing them to better deliver the right learning materials.
Hey, it worked for McDonald’s, didn’t it? KFC would certainly prefer that its British customers hang around for long enough to justify a bucket of chicken rather than a Snack Box, so it’s teaming up with The Cloud to offer free WiFi in all of its UK restaurants. The gradual rollout will just ask that visitors face a KFC landing page before they wander over to cat videos and ex-partners’ status updates. We’re glad to have one more avenue for internet access when we’re feeling peckish, although we may question our path in life when we’re Instagramming a Boneless Banquet For One.
The Raspberry Pi mini computer won’t be blind for much longer: a video camera unit shown off last month that will allow Pi owners to build video applications is expected to go on sale in April, according to the Pi Foundation’s Liz Upton. The Foundation is also running a competition to find 10 testers who can put the camera board through its paces.
Infrared holography can reveal details hidden behind smoke and flames, potentially life-saving information to help firefighters and emergency responders.
Whether the two simply call the whole thing off or become a single unified company, Vodafone and Verizon could be “resolving” their relationship very soon according to Bloomberg. The oft-cited “people familiar with the situation” say that Verizon is considering ending its joint venture with Vodafone by purchasing back the 45 percent stake the European carrier currently holds in its American cousin. Another possible, though less likely, outcome is that Vodafone and Verizon could merge to form a single entity. Though, sources claim that previous talks towards that goal have hit roadblocks over leadership and headquarters location. The move would give Verizon slightly more power and freedom in the wireless market while allowing Vodafone to shed some its overseas weight. Vodafone CEO Vittorio Colao has made it obvious that he’s eager to sell off its non-controlling stakes in other operators. At the moment it doesn’t appear that formal negotiations have begun, but the two companies have apparently had high-level talks about their various options over the last few months. Obviously we’ll be keeping an eye out for more information and you can hit up the source link for a few more details.
HP has reached the halfway point in its restructuring, with 15,000 employees left to cut to meet its layoff target by the end of next year, according to CEO Meg Whitman.
Surgeon Simulator 2013 passes through Steam’s Greenlight program, shouldn’t have passed med school (video)
One of ten new additions to come from Valve’s Greenlight community platform, Surgeon Simulator 2013 was crafted in a mere 48 hours at Global Game Jam and puts you in the role of a clumsy surgeon, responsible for a patient who’s unlikely to last the night. You should consult the video after the break to get an idea of the level of incompetence here, but let’s just say your efforts are measured by Blood Level. You’ll get access to scalpels, hammers and bone saws as you perform heart surgery and brain transplants — in short, it’s going to get messy. Other new additions include Anodyne, Distance, Receiver, and Huntsman: The Orphanage and all of ‘em can be downloaded from Steam starting today.
Filed under: Gaming
Researchers show that animals can collaborate via a brain-to-brain interface.
Pairs of rats can communicate through brain chips and collaborate to perform a task, report researchers in today’s Scientific Reports. Brain activity recorded in one rat was translated into a pattern of electrical pulses that were then transmitted to another rat that had been trained to push a particular lever in response to one of two patterns of electrical stimulation in its brain. The rats also worked together, say the researchers. If the second rat chose the wrong lever, then the first rat would change its brain function and behavior in the next trial so that the receiving rodent was more likely to get it right, claim the scientists.
Barnes & Noble and its Nook may be the subject of many a rumor of late, but that’s not stopping the tablet-maker from its business — which now includes Bluetooth speakers, apparently. We just spotted this previously unseen bad boy lurking in the FCC’s antechambers packing the 2.4GHz Bluetooth bands and a rechargeable battery. That’d give some portable audio accompaniment to your Nook HD or other Bluetooth device (like the iPhone and iPod it was also tested with), though we’re not sure how B&N’s planning to market it. There’s now a listing sans photos or other info parked on its site (see MC link), so you might soon be able to read yourself to sleep with that free book.
Every week, a new and interesting human being tackles our decidedly geeky take on the Proustian Q&A. This is the Engadget Questionnaire.
In the latest installment of our weekly session of inquiry, Turquoise Jeep Co-CEO Flynt Flossy chats about shower meditation and capturing hooks on the go. Join us on the other side of the break for all of the responses and a look at Mr. Flossy’s stellar dance moves.
Filed under: Misc
The #1 request I hear when talking to founders in San Francisco is: “We are hiring engineers. Know any?” We all know this is a big issue that’s only getting worse, and so do most of the investors. But, I’m now starting to hear this so often, I’m beginning to worry that all the conventional tactics simply won’t work. Early-stage startups that don’t start experimenting with new ideas to source, recruit, and close engineers and other technical hires may end up running out of money or never achieving the product traction they need to get to the next level. I don’t have data to support this, but my intuition is that technical talent is so fragmented right now, all options need to be reexamined and placed on the table.
TechCrunch TV recently made the trek to Las Vegas, where we had the chance to check out the burgeoning startup community that’s taking shape there thanks in large part to a $ 350 million initiative called the “Downtown Project.” When many people think of Vegas, they think of nothing but the casino-, tourist-, and hotel-packed area known as the Strip — but the Downtown Project, which is headed up by Zappos CEO Tony Hseih, is focused on bringing new life to the area also known as “old Vegas” that used to be the playground for the likes of the Rat Pack.
The NBA isn’t known for offering much in the way of free apps, or tailoring its efforts around a special event. For the All-Star Game and surrounding events, however, the league is trying both in one shot. Its All-Star 2013 app for Android, iPads and iPhones lets anyone follow along with related scores, news, video highlights and voting for certain MVP awards. Fans fortunate enough to be in Houston for the event also get ticket details and maps. You’ll notice that there’s no mention of live audio or video — the NBA isn’t that kind, unfortunately. Even so, the All-Star app could be helpful for keeping tabs on the Slam Dunk competition without paying for the privilege.
Google’s No. 1 Asset Is Its Ability To Empathize With Its Users Through Design And Product Development
As your Internet use has evolved, Google has evolved with you. And for you. Its ability to make the right decisions about what to work on and at what time is a testament to the leadership at the company. The latest wave in its evolution comes from Sergey Brin and its new CEO Larry Page, the people who started Google back in 1998. If you’ve thought that all of Google’s products looked cobbled together, or are different from one another, it’s because they were. It was a public view into how siloed the company was as far as its product-management and design teams were concerned. Everyone worked in a vacuum, so when a new version of Google Calendar came out, it looked nothing like the user experience of, say, Gmail. While this didn’t seem like a problem for a long time, as more people used more Google products, it became clear that Google was a huge company that wasn’t in touch with its users — or each other. What I’ve also learned while covering Google over the past two years is that it has an uncanny ability to put itself in the shoes of its users, almost to the point where they can leverage data and feedback to build, in essence, the perfect product. When I say perfect, I don’t mean flawless. I mean that when you use Google products, you’re in essence a Googler, too. Google takes the concept of “dogfooding” to unparalleled levels, putting current and new products through such rigorous real-world testing cycles, that it’s impressive that things ever see the light of day. When you scrutinize something so much, it’s easy to scrap it because you’ve fallen out of love with it after seeing it all the time. Not Google, because it has a system in place to get feedback from both employees and outside users. The system makes the go-to-market plan a near bullet-proof approach to launching products, because there’s a good sense that it’s something that people will want to use, and use a lot. But lately, people have noticed a bit of a change in how Google designs its products. Some of the “look and feel” has been infused in everything that Google touches these days. Whether it’s Google+ functionality, Search, Maps or YouTube, you’re starting to see a little bit of “style” come out of Mountain View. That’s not an accident, because it
Rumors (recently confirmed by company executives) have suggested Samsung would expand its lineup of stylus-packing mobile devices, and this GT-N5110 that just passed through the FCC fits the profile almost exactly. Sporting only WiFi and Bluetooth radios and described as a “personal tablet” it fits perfectly into the size hole between the existing Galaxy Note II and Galaxy Note 10.1 (check out a comparison of the dimensions after the break.)
The model number is also close to the Exynos 4 Quad powered GT-N5100 observed in benchmarks last month and another page in the document indicates it’s sporting a matching 1.6GHz CPU. Looking back further, SamMobile spotted a GT-N5100/GT-N5110 certified for DLNA service back in the fall. The diagram listed in the FCC also seems to confirm recent picture leaks that show a device with a center mounted rear camera that looks more like the hot-selling Note II and less like most larger tablets. Hit the source link to dig through the documents for yourself, or just wait for more information which should be revealed in time for MWC 2013.
Many entered, but it was Daniel Orren who sent in a great green-screened video that snagged him a temporary spot on the Engadget crew at this year’s CES. Hanging with the team in our trusty trailer, getting comped meals, roaming the floor, wearing mind-controlled cat ears – honestly, it’s probably just easier to list all of the things the photographer didn’t do the other week in Vegas.
With the dust settled, we asked Orren how he enjoyed the trip. “The showroom floor was a lot bigger than I had anticipated originally, so naturally this was great as there were more gadgets.” Amongst the highlights: “My favorite times would have to be hanging with the Engadget crew, it’s nice just chatting with everyone about all the cool stuff you’ve seen that day/week and just geeking out.” And as for that inevitable question, the one we ask ourselves right around this time each year, ” I’d love to go back to CES if given the chance, and who knows, maybe I’ll just go on my own in a few years.”
Also included in the prize package was an Engadget Show segment to call his very own. When he wasn’t occupied with the Steambox and 4K TVs, our film crew was following Orren around to find out what it’s like going to CES as a first-timer. Check in after the break for the results.
This segment originally appeared in episode 40 of The Engadget Show.
Timothy Lord starts this video with these words: “Sensors are a big deal at CES this year. They are small devices that track everything from the location of your pets to how many steps you have taken today.” And so he chatted with Phillip Bolliger, founder of Swiss company Koubachi AG, which makes Wi-Fi sensors that help you give your plants the right amount of water and light and to keep them at the right temperature. As of this writing, the prices on their online store are in Euros, not dollars, but the sensors are now available through Amazon with U.S. pricing. Koubachi also has a free app for your iOS device, and a Facebook app for your computer or Android device, that will help you give your plants the right amount of fertilizer and other love even if you don’t buy a Koubachi sensor.
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
An anonymous reader writes “The Swiss Federal Office of Topography has published a complete set of digitized historical maps from 1938 to 2011. The twist: a browser application allows you to create a time travel movie at any place in Switzerland for any zoom level. As an example, you can see the recession of Europe’s biggest glacier over the last 75 years. The application is the most recent effort of the Swiss Government to make geodata freely available to the public at no cost using open source software and will include maps dating as far back as 1838.”
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
angry tapir writes “Two U.S. power companies have reported infections of malware during the past three months, with the bad software apparently brought in through tainted USB drives, according to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Industrial Control Systems Cyber Emergency Response Team (ICS-CERT). The publication (PDF) did not name the malware discovered. The tainted USB drive came in contact with a ‘handful of machines’ at the power generation facility and investigators found sophisticated malware on two engineering workstations critical to the operation of the control environment, ICS-CERT said.”
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Sad to say, but British researchers have called off their quest to drill through the 3km-thick sheet of ice over Lake Ellsworth in Antarctica. The mission to find organisms that have evolved in isolation for at least 100,000 years was called off after the team realized it didn’t have enough fuel to power its water jet drill all the way to the lake. Complications arose trying to connect the drill’s main hose to a cavity of water created in the ice by a short pilot hose. The team burned through so much fuel trying to get the hose connected properly that they no longer had enough left to reach the lake below the glacier’s surface. The plan has not been scrapped entirely, however. The scientists are heading back to the UK, along with all their kit, to revise their plan and modify their equipment for the next attempt. Still, it appears breaking through to Lake Ellsworth is at least three years out. For more from geoscientist and expedition member Martin Siegert, check out the source link.
Source: New Scientist