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Baidu’s Android apps go green for better battery life

Baidu’s Android apps go green for better battery life

We’ve all been there: the excitement of getting a new smartphone, the fun of loading it up with your favorite apps, and then the frustration when your handset starts getting weighed-down and your battery runs flat. DU Battery Saver and DU Speed Booster, products from China’s biggest search engine company Baidu, admittedly can’t satiate your upgrade lust for the latest Android flagship. Instead, they promise something perhaps even more useful: the ability to squeeze more performance out of your existing phone and postpone the need to buy a new one. But for the app developers, those benefits are secondary to an even more ambitious goal: helping the environment. If you’re upgrading your phone less frequently, you’re reducing your e-waste footprint and energy usage and putting less strain on the planet.

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SlashGear is now on SmartNews for super-fast reading

SlashGear is now on SmartNews for super-fast reading

With more and more people reaching for their phone to get the latest news, we're excited to announce that you can now find a SlashGear channel in SmartNews. We've been big fans of the app for some time now: not only is it clean and east to read, it's fast too, something that's important when you're on the move. It's available for both iPhone and Android.

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Google Spotlight Stories app debuts on iOS

Google Spotlight Stories app debuts on iOS

Google has had an app for Android users called Spotlight Stories that allows the user to watch short 360-degree animated films that landed in 2013. The app was originally developed for Motorola users before Google purchased Motorola back in 2011. iOS users that like short animated films can now get the app for their iPhone or iPad.

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Kodi, formerly XBMC, makes its biggest release yet

Kodi, formerly XBMC, makes its biggest release yet

Although it shed off its high-profile name last year, which probably doesn't help its publicity, Kodi, the media center formerly knowns as XBMC, hasn't stopped being the favorite solution of homebrew media centers. And with version 15.0 "Isengard", it has gotten even better, with new features that, honestly speaking, you would have expected to have been there already in this day and age. And for the Android faithful, Kodi brings the gift of its first ever official stable release for the platform, which includes support for 4K resolutions.

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Google buys Pixate to ease the pain of designing mobile apps

Google buys Pixate to ease the pain of designing mobile apps

While few will probably contest the technical capabilities of Android, the platform and its apps has traditionally been criticized for its less than pleasant aesthetics. That all changed in the era of Material Design and now Google is taking it one step further. It has just acquired Pixate and its prototyping software of the same name. This adds a new tool to Google's belt of design and development apps and services that make creating mobile apps less of a chore and more of a joy.

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Lightroom for Android gets slew of bug fixes, new features

Lightroom for Android gets slew of bug fixes, new features

Adobe has pushed out an update to its Lightroom for Android app, improving the mobile photography offering by both fixing some bugs that plagued the previous version and adding in new features that increase the app's usefulness. This brings the app up to Lightroom 1.2. Image editing, among other things, is promised to be faster in this version by allowing users to copy adjustments from one photo and paste them onto another. We’ve details on the rest of the changes after the jump!

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Xbox One game streaming switched on for Windows 10

Xbox One game streaming switched on for Windows 10

In little less than two weeks, Microsoft will finally unveil its "universal" Windows 10 OS. To show solidarity with its PC sibling, the Xbox One is also revving up the hype machine. For starters, game streaming from the console is now enabled for everyone who has, or will have, a Windows 10 computer. But that's just the tip of the iceberg. The real meat is coming with the July update of the Xbox App on Windows 10, turning it into your one stop shop for your Windows Store and "regular" Windows games.

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Cortana for Android leaked early, so we put it on a BlackBerry

Cortana for Android leaked early, so we put it on a BlackBerry

Last month it was announced that Cortana would be arriving for Android in July, and though it has not yet been officially debuted, an apk of what is said to be the official Cortana for Android app has leaked online. The download is still live at this point, and those who have used the personal assistant on a Windows Phone will find that it operates the same way: you can view recent headlines, issue voice commands, adjust what it knows about you, and more.

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Yahoo Livetext ‘video messenger’ app arrives for iOS

Yahoo Livetext ‘video messenger’ app arrives for iOS

Yahoo is apparently close to formally introducing a replacement for its messaging app, as it recently released a new app on the Hong Kong App Store called “Yahoo Livetext”, a mobile offering described as a video messenger. Livetext has a twist with its messaging feature. Rather than swapping media-less texts or snapping selfies, Livetext is “live video texting" — it presents live video of your friend texting, but with the audio stripped away due to it being inconvenient in many situations. This is said to offer more natural conversations, allowing two people to see each other as they talk.

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Pocket for iOS updated with text-to-speech feature

Pocket for iOS updated with text-to-speech feature

Pocket, the wonderful app that lets users save articles and other content for reading later on, has updated its iOS app with a text to speed feature. With this feature, busy users can have their saved articles read to them while they do other things the same as an audio book. It's a handy feature, one that makes it easier to work through one's saved articles while driving to or from work or while doing other things that require your attention to be (mostly) elsewhere.

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Microsoft Garage apps aim at business users on the Go

Microsoft Garage apps aim at business users on the Go

Microsoft has rolled out three new apps in its Garage Apps segment and are all productivity apps that aim at helping business users and executives become more efficient. All business types need to keep track of various meetings, conferences, and receipts during their work. Microsoft has three apps to help with Join Conference, InstaNote, and Receipt Tracker.

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Skype for Android updated to v5.5: easier sign-ins and more

Skype for Android updated to v5.5: easier sign-ins and more

Today Microsoft pushed an update for its Skype for Android app to the Google Play Store, bringing it up to version 5.5 and adding in some features that will be handy for mobile users. The biggest among the changes is arguably an improvement to signing in from mobile, making it easier for those who insist on logging out to sign back in from their Android smartphone or tablet. The chatting feature will soon be updated, too, and will likewise be a little more convenient once it is.

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