Author Archives: JC Torres


Hello Google Allo smart messenger! Download the APK here

Hello Google Allo smart messenger! Download the APK here

Back in late May, Google revealed two new messaging platforms, each with its own distinct appeal. Duo, the tech giant’s latest take on simplified video chats, already launched a while ago. Now it’s Google Allo’s turn, and it has a lot to say. Calling it a smart messaging app, Allo promises to not only make it easier to reply to messages by barely typing anything, it also tries to bring some AI-powered smartness via a preview version of Google Assistant through, what else but a chatbot.

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Galaxy Note 7 update adds green battery icon for “safe” models

Galaxy Note 7 update adds green battery icon for “safe” models

Samsung has announced a software update that, while doesn’t directly address the problem of overheating and exploding Galaxy Note 7’s, does take a step towards informing consumers of the situation and assuring them of future Galaxy Note 7 models. That is, if they still opt to buy one. A firmware update that’s being pushed to both the old problematic models and the newer “fixed” ones will include a new battery icon to indicate whether the model is a part of the new batches. And for the older models, owners will be faced with warnings and advice to power down their smartphone and have it replaced as soon as possible.

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macOS Sierra has landed: here’s what you’re getting

macOS Sierra has landed: here’s what you’re getting

While we’re still waiting for a refreshed MacBook line, Apple has gotten the Mac ball rolling with the official release of macOS Sierra. Available as a free update, for those who already own the previous El Capitan version, of course, the latest version of the operating system formerly known as “OS X” closes the gap between desktop and mobile even further. From talking to Siri to being able to share clipboard content between Mac and iPhone or iPad, the latest version of Apple’s desktop OS is perhaps, somewhat ironically, also the most mobile.

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Google Search now shows AMP labels for all

Google Search now shows AMP labels for all

While almost everyone nowadays browses the web through their smartphones at one point or another, not all websites are still designed with mobile constraints in mind, leading to non-optimized, slow-loading content on smartphones. Google’s AMP, short for Accelerated Mobile Pages, is an effort to encourage websites to pick up the slack, both using technologies and a little preferential treatment. The initiative has apparently been quite popular that Google is now stepping up the game to make AMP’ed pages even more prominent in Google Search on mobile, putting labels on websites that provide mobile-optimized content.

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ZTE Axon 7 update brings improved battery, signal performance

ZTE Axon 7 update brings improved battery, signal performance

ZTE’s Axon brand continues to do miracles for the company in the US. After a surprising first launch last year, the Chinese manufacturer aimed to bring high-end specs down to an affordable level with the Axon 7 last July. To follow up on that success, ZTE is pushing an update that tries to address some of the biggest pain points of the smartphone, or any smartphone for that matter, particularly in signal strength as well as battery life.

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BlackBerry “Argon” DTEK60’s existence leaked by BlackBerry

BlackBerry “Argon” DTEK60’s existence leaked by BlackBerry

BlackBerry apparently isn’t done with Android smartphones yet. Or at least isn’t half done. If you remember the days preceding the announcement of the oddly named DTEK50, there were rumors about “Neon” and “Argon”, even a “Mercury” smartphones coming up. Well, “Neon” eventually became the DTEK50 we know today and, apparently, Argon is going to be the DTEK60 after all. That is according to a product page that was, funnily enough, “accidentally” published by BlackBerry itself. And even if BB takes the page down, the Internet now knows and will remember.

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Google Photos now shares with anyone, creates themed movies

Google Photos now shares with anyone, creates themed movies

Most people prefer to use their smartphones, even if less capable, over cameras to take pictures because of two reasons primarily. One, smartphones are almost always readily available and always with you. Second is because it’s a lot easier to share them directly off your phone than through a camera. The latest Google Photos update has made that even a lot easier, maybe even lazier. Now you can share with people more directly rather than wasting time trying to juggle sharing with apps.

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Lenovo Yoga Book goes on pre-order in the US

Lenovo Yoga Book goes on pre-order in the US

While we've seen no small amount of new devices back at IFA 2016 earlier this month, few managed to really make head turns and capture attendees' imaginations than the Lenovo Yoga Book. Part tablet, part laptop, part notepad, part stylish Frankenstein, the Yoga Book targets as many markets and use cases as Lenovo can. Interesting as it may be, the real test will be in sales numbers, and now that theory will be put to the test as the device starts its pre-order period, with a shipping date set for October.

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Unlocked Moto Z, Moto Z Play start pre-order phase

Unlocked Moto Z, Moto Z Play start pre-order phase

Although IFA 2016 is far behind us, we are only now feeling the aftermath of the dozens of devices revealed back then, and some even earlier. Joining the growing list of devices going on sale or pre-order is the Moto Z Play and its higher end Moto Z sibling, now both available for pre-order in their unlocked versions. Soon, the two smartphones will be available to even more consumers, putting to the test Motorola's own spin on the concept and implementation of what a modular smartphone really is.

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Sony A99 II brings modern technologies to a familiar name

Sony A99 II brings modern technologies to a familiar name

Almost exactly four years ago, Sony introduced what became the flagship model for its line of interchangeable lense cameras, the A99. But for years is too long a time for a flagship to stay at the top and the A99 was eventually overtaken by newer models. At Photokina this year, Sony is attempting to reclaim the throne with an updated camera but still a familiar name. The Sony A99 II obviously takes its lead from 2012’s forefrunner, but boasts of the technologies befitting a 2016 flagship.

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Opera makes its VPN service totally free on its desktop browser

Opera makes its VPN service totally free on its desktop browser

Once the darling of mobile browsing, back when our mobile phones were still far from being smart, Opera seems to be making up for lost time and market and hitting both the web browser and mobile markets in new ways. Just last month, the company announced the arrival of its free VPN app on Android and now it’s making a slightly similar move on the desktop. No, it’s not announcing a VPN app per se. Instead, it is building VPN functionality right into the heart of its Opera desktop browsers and, better yet, making it completely free to use.

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Fujifilm GFX puts a large 51MP sensor in a mirrorless camera

Fujifilm GFX puts a large 51MP sensor in a mirrorless camera

Those who believe that the camera market has run out of tricks against the onslaught of smartphones may have been proven wrong by Fujifilm’s latest announcement. At Photokina, the camera maker unveiled the Fujifilm GFX 50S, the first of its brand new GFX camera system and G frame sensor line. Perhaps more than the camera itself, the focus is being lavished on the new GFX system that aims to redefine medium format cameras, fitting a large-sized 51.4 megapixel sensor inside the light and compact body of a mirrorless camera.

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