Apps

Windows’ Your Groove suggests music you might like

Windows’ Your Groove suggests music you might like

If you're not familiar with what on earth Groove, more formally Groove Music, is, you would be in good company. Put it simply, it's the new name of what was once called Xbox Music, since it wasn't available only the Xbox only anyway. If you haven't heard much about it since the renaming almost a year ago, that's because it hasn't exactly been given some major love. Microsoft is now trying to catch up by giving users what is said to be a most requested feature. Your Groove, in a nutshell, is Groove Music's own version of a recommendation system, both for tracks already in your collection as well as new, unexplored ones.

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Fitbit Sleep Schedule makes sure you get enough shut-eye

Fitbit Sleep Schedule makes sure you get enough shut-eye

It might sound almost paradoxical that an activity tracker would also track the least active part of our daily routine. However, sleep is perhaps the most underrated aspect of health and usually the first to be sacrificed in the name of productivity. The Fitbit app's new Sleep Schedule feature puts the focus back on the bed (or the couch, if it comes to that) to ensure you get the optimal hours of sleep to actually keep your body fit and healthy.

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Snapchat admits to copying makeup artists for photo filters

Snapchat admits to copying makeup artists for photo filters

Snapchat has ever-so-carefully come clean about copying. You'd think with the service being a popular mobile app the copied material might be code or UI design, but it turns out it's their popular photo filters. The company has admitted that employees copied the designs from makeup artists who share their designs on YouTube, Instagram, and other sites. Artists have been aware of this for some time, and grown frustrated over the lack of credit.

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Shazam for Android adds auto mode for background listening

Shazam for Android adds auto mode for background listening

Shazam, the handy app that figures out what song is playing on your behalf, just got a new auto mode that enables it to listen in the background. This new feature comes with the latest update, and is designed to make the entire process hands-free. If you’re walking through the store and hear a song you like, no need to stop and pull out your phone. Shazam will already be listening, will figure it out, and will add it to your list of songs.

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Google Calendar now shows when you’re free for easier scheduling

Google Calendar now shows when you’re free for easier scheduling

The Google Calendar Android app has been updated with a new feature that first arrived in Calendar for Work and Education -- it can pinpoint times when you're free, making it easier to set up appointments. The feature can be used with specific dates, as well, so you can quickly find the right open time slot for your needs. Google announced the new feature this week, and you can get it now in version 5.5.7 via the Google Play Store.

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Disney app narrates ‘Finding Dory’ for visually impaired fans

Disney app narrates ‘Finding Dory’ for visually impaired fans

Finding Dory arrived in theaters today, and thanks to the Disney Movies Anywhere app, visually impaired and blind movie goers will be able to enjoy the movie with audio narration. The app works by using a phone’s microphone to listen to the movie; when the dialog in the movie stops, the app will describe what is happening on-screen directly to the user via a pair of headphones.

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Snapchat announces once-daily digital magazine about technology

Snapchat announces once-daily digital magazine about technology

We all know that Snapchat's meat and potatoes are selfies and videos, but that doesn't mean the company isn't interested in exploring new ideas. Snapchat made a solid attempt at creating original video content, but after that was shut down last fall, its ready to try something different. It's not video-related this time; instead, it's text — no, not text messaging. Rather, the text you see when reading a magazine, or in Snapchat's case, a digital magazine.

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ADW Launcher 2.0 official: time for Android fun

ADW Launcher 2.0 official: time for Android fun

The excess of settings available with ADW Launcher 2.0 is absolutely insane. It's as if the creators of this app decided to take everything Google recommends about keeping in line with their Material Design language and threw it directly out the window. You can do basically anything you want with this launcher, up to and including making your Android smartphone or tablet look like a masterpiece - or an absolute mess. That's on you.

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Apple confirms no current plans for iMessage on Android

Apple confirms no current plans for iMessage on Android

Just before WWDC 2016 kicked off this week, one of the rumors that popped up was that Apple would announced iMessage for Android, allowing the free, encrypted messaging service to co-exist on both platforms. However, the WWDC keynote passed with the only focus on iMessage being new texting effects, stickers, and more. Now, as The Verge's Walt Mossberg explains, an Apple executive has revealed why iMessage is unlikely to come to Android anytime in the near future.

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Chrome OS dev 53 update brings the promised Google Play Store

Chrome OS dev 53 update brings the promised Google Play Store

It seems that the promised day for Chome OS users has finally arrived. At least for those users who happen to own an ASUS Chromebook Flip and are running the experimental dev version of the OS. Reports are coming in that the latest version 53 of the dev channel is greeting them with a surprise welcome message announcing the arrival of Google Play Store on their Chromebook. There are still some rough edges and unanswered questions, but for some lucky users, it's the start of a renewed friendship with their Chromebooks.

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Opera adds native ad blocker on iOS, Android and Windows Phone

Opera adds native ad blocker on iOS, Android and Windows Phone

Opera has announced a controversial new feature for its browsers on iOS, Android and Windows Phone: native ad blocking. Those who choose to enable it will have the browser block advertisements for them, something that feels beneficial on the user end but ultimately harms the websites those users visit. Opera says the new native ad blocking feature will help speed up mobile browsing while reducing data usage.

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Facebook Messenger rolls out new Home screen, inbox features

Facebook Messenger rolls out new Home screen, inbox features

The Facebook Messenger app continues to see updates and changes this week, following the Android version's new support for SMS. The latest version of both the iOS and Android app introduces a Home tab, which, replacing the previous launch screen, basically acts like an inbox for the messaging platform. In addition to a list of recent conversations, this screen will show which contacts are currently online, upcoming birthdays, and the friends you chat with the most.

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