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Submission + - The dark side of Apple's iBeacons->

redkemper writes: Alongside the introduction of Apple’s latest mobile operating system iOS 7, the company also rolled out its answer to the NFC technology it has gone out of its way to avoid in iPhones, iPads and iPod touch handhelds. The solution is called “iBeacon,” and it allows for the creation of Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacons that emit signals iOS 7-powered devices will automatically react to when they come within range of the beacon. These beacons can be apps installed on Apple’s iOS devices or they can be dedicated hardware that use BLE to interact with Apple handsets and tablets. There are some great use cases out there that really could make fantastic use of Apple’s new iBeacon feature, but there is also a darker side of iBeacons that could become a huge annoyance for iPhone owners and other iOS device users...
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Submission + - Apple releases iOS 7, now available for all to download->

redkemper writes: Just as promised, Apple on Wednesday released the final version of its brand new iOS 7 operating system to the public. The new mobile software is available immediately for the iPhone 5, iPhone 4S, iPhone 4, iPad (third and fourth generations), iPad 2, iPad mini and iPod touch (fifth generation). We called iOS 7 a major renovation that for the most part lacked real innovation when we previewed the software back in June. In our full iOS 7 review earlier this week, however, we explained why that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. iOS 7 represents the biggest overhaul to Apple’s massively popular mobile operating system since it debuted in 2007, and now it’s finally available to the public. It also lays the groundwork for some real innovation in future iOS versions, and many will be waiting anxiously to be wowed by more than just a new design in iOS 8 next year...
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Submission + - Exclusive photos of Amazon's completely redesigned next-gen Kindle Fire HD->

redkemper writes: There really isn’t much mystery remaining as Amazon prepares to unveil its second-generation Kindle Fire HD tablets and its third-generation Kindle Fire slate in the coming weeks. First we published exclusive details about Amazon’s entire 2013 tablet lineup and then we followed up by revealing all of the key specs for the upcoming new Kindle Fire HD tablets as well as the new entry-level Kindle Fire. Amazon’s new high-definition slates are shaping up to be two of the most impressive tablets in the world when they debut, and anticipation is certainly building. Now, BGR has obtained exclusive photos of the unannounced next-generation Kindle Fire HD that Amazon is preparing to unveil as soon as later this month, giving the world its first-ever look at Amazon’s new hardware for 2013...
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Submission + - Huge iOS, OS X vulnerability uncovered that can render apps unusable->

redkemper writes: Android might be targeted by hackers and malware far more often than Apple’s iOS platform, but that doesn’t mean devices like the iPhone and iPad are immune to threats. A post on a Russian website draws attention to a fairly serious vulnerability that allows nefarious users to remotely crash apps on iOS 6, or even render them unusable. The vulnerability is seemingly due to a bug in Apple’s CoreText font rendering framework, and OS X Mountain Lion is affected as well...
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Submission + - Thief swipes iPhones, leaves his own Samsung smartphone at the scene->

redkemper writes: Clearly, there are better ways to switch smartphone platforms. 25-year-old Travis Montgomery Snyder was arrested this week in Remington, Virginia after a police investigation into a local robbery led them to the man. According to a report, Snyder stands accused of a smash-and-grab robbery where the suspect broke a display case at a Springfield, Virginia wireless store and absconded with several iPhones. Unfortunately for the suspect, he also left his own Samsung smartphone at the scene. Fairfax County police reportedly traced the Galaxy phone’s subscription back to Snyder and then arrested him on Monday...
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Submission + - Here's BlackBerry's entire roadmap for the remainder of 2013->

redkemper writes: It’s been a while since we heard about exactly what BlackBerry has in store for the rest of 2013. Thanks to multiple trusted sources, however, we not only know but we also have some exclusive photos. First up is the BlackBerry A10, code-named “Aristo.” This device is going to be positioned as the most powerful, capable BlackBerry yet with a big focus on power and gaming. For some people, it might be the BlackBerry 10 smartphone they have been waiting for...
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Submission + - iOS 7 might be more innovative than we think->

redkemper writes: When I took an in-depth look at iOS 7 earlier this week, I found plenty to be excited about in Apple’s upcoming overhauled mobile software. I also said that real innovation is scarce, however, and I asked what meaningful, innovative functions iOS 7 is capable of performing that iOS 6 is not. Not everyone agrees, of course, one industry watching argues that innovation is in fact one of Apple’s secret weapons in iOS 7...
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Submission + - A week with iOS 7: The search for innovation amid renovation->

brocket66 writes: Apple unveiled its vision for the future of mobile computing last week and the Internet erupted. A new feud was born, not between iOS fans and Android fans or between Apple fans and Samsung fans, but among iOS users themselves. On one side, a legion of iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users were fawning over the redesigned software shown off by Jony Ive and company. It’s a breath of fresh air it’s amazing it’s “positively mind-blowing.” On the other side, iOS 7 was panned. Many longtime Apple fans watched in horror as Apple peeled back the layers on its new iOS interface, and all the great features were instantly overshadowed by Apple’s controversial new design. Is iOS 7 a brilliant push forward? Is it a tragedy in the making?
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Submission + - Why is AT&T milking subscribers for an extra $500 million? 'Because they can->

redkemper writes: AT&T said earlier this week that it will add a new administrative fee to each of its wireless subscribers’ monthly bills. The fee is only $0.61, which doesn’t sound like much, and AT&T’s public relations firm was quick to point out that this new fee is lower than similar fees charged by rival carriers. Subscribers were still outraged. Now that the shouting has died down a bit, however, people are looking for a batter explanation for the new charge they’ll see each month. According to one industry watcher, that explanation couldn’t be simpler: “Because they can.”
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Submission + - Study suggests Google Glass could be a smash hit->

zacharye writes: Google Glass is expected to be a pretty big focus at Google I/O this year, but it’s still unclear how the public at large will receive Google’s connected eyewear when it launches next year. In an effort to assess its odds in the U.S. market, BiTE Interactive commissioned YouGov to conduct a study on the matter. According to a poll of 1,000 American smartphone owners aged 18 and above, “only” one in 10 respondents said they would be willing to wear Google Glass regularly, regardless of the device’s price. The study also found that 45% of those polled said they believe Google Glass is “too socially awkward” or “too irritating” to wear, and 44% said they simply don’t find any of Glass’ known features to be desirable. But the numbers tell a different story...
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Submission + - Is Facebook barking up the wrong tree with Home?->

redkemper writes: Is Facebook doing its homework? We trust that Facebook is analyzing usage stats when deciding which handsets to address with its Home rollout, but it seems odd that Samsung’s Galaxy S4 and the HTC One, which both became supported by Home on Friday, would be high on the list of devices used by hardcore Facebook addicts — the ones Home is likely best suited for. Home is an immersive software suite that takes over an Android phone’s home screen and app launcher, replacing them with a river of Facebook photos and a new launcher that provides quick access to various Facebook features. Could a Facebook takeover possibly be something the average Galaxy S4 or HTC One user is looking for?...
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Submission + - This is the back of a $640 phone->

zacharye writes: Last night I posted a tweet that drew some interesting responses. Beside the text “the back of a $640 phone,” I posted an image of the Galaxy S4s case-back as I contorted the flexible paper-thin cover in my hand. I made no further comment. As I covered briefly for the umpteenth time in an article on Wednesday, the Galaxy S4 feels cheap. It feels flimsy. The fact of the matter is that the phone is neither cheap nor flimsy — at $237, the combined value of its parts is actually 10% higher than the aluminum iPhone 5s build of materials (BOM). But however expensive and durable the materials Samsung used in the Galaxy S4 may be, it still doesn’t feel like a high-end smartphone...
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Submission + - Google Glass is no iPad->

zacharye writes: The consumer electronics industry has gotten pretty boring lately. That’s not to say the new products that have debuted recently are boring, but we’re definitely in a period marked by iteration. Each new smartphone closely resembles the smartphone that came before it, each new tablet is a tweak and a spec bump away from its predecessor, and Windows 8 hasn’t reinvented the PC like we had hoped. The timing couldn’t have been better for Google to shake things up with Google Glass, the curious connected eyewear that will launch next year. But is Glass really the next big thing or are we all just so bored that anything seems like a breath of fresh air?
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Submission + - Statistical analysis finds Google shuts down 35% of its services-> 1

zacharye writes: A statistical analysis of Google’s track record has found that more than one out of every three services Google launches ends up being shut down. A recent extensive analysis of Google’s launches over the years was published in an effort to find closure patterns and maybe even predict which current and new services might be shuttered in the future. In doing so, the site found that a sizable chunk of Google’s product portfolio — 35% — has been shut down over the years...
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Submission + - Here comes Samsung's Galaxy S4: launches on 7 carries this month->

redkemper writes: When the Samsung Galaxy S4 was previewed back in March, we called it the Android smartphone by which all others will be judged in 2013. As Samsung announced on Wednesday morning, Judgement Day is coming this month on every major wireless carrier in the United States. The world’s top smartphone maker has confirmed that its new flagship smartphone will launch on seven different carriers in April, including AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless, U.S. Cellular, Cricket and C Spire. The Galaxy S4 will also be available at a number of the nation’s leading electronics retailers beginning this month, including Best Buy, Best Buy Mobile, Costco, RadioShack, Sam’s Club, Staples, Target and Walmart. Specific pricing and launch dates will be announced by individual carriers in the coming weeks...
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All great ideas are controversial, or have been at one time.