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Wearables mean we’ve popped the smartphone bubble

Wearables mean we’ve popped the smartphone bubble

Manufacturers couldn't cram any more socially acceptable functionality into their smartphones, so they moved their smartphones to your wrist. When we first started seeing so-called "Wearable" devices, it was clear: these devices were either going to be wristwatches or they were going to be extra-tiny smartphones. Or tablets, if you're talking about the devices without phone capabilities. Once the smartwatch launched with a tiny version of Android onboard, it wasn't difficult to access: smartphone innovation was over, and the hype machine was back in action.

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Chrome OS extension lets you run Linux in a window

Chrome OS extension lets you run Linux in a window

Linux running on a Chromebook isn’t new; it’s not even that clever. Based on the Linux kernel, Chrome OS is a lot more like a svelte Linux distro than a “traditional” operating system. Still, running Linux on the Chromebook was clumsy, asking that you split your device in two, digitally speaking. Via Google+, Chrome evangelist Francois Beaufort is announcing that brave souls in Developer Mode can now run Linux in its own window on a Chromebook. All you need is a Crouton Chrome extension.

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Gmail revived in China but block remains a mystery

Gmail revived in China but block remains a mystery

Gmail access has apparently returned to China, with users of the email service in the country reporting that the four day outage which nobody would take responsibility for seems to have come to an end. Google's POP and IMAP servers were unexpectedly unavailable over the weekend, with widespread claims that the "Great Firewall" China's government relies upon to limit access to the internet had clamped down on another victim. Just as suddenly, though, emails have begun to make it through, and Google's own metrics indicate a slight rise in Chinese traffic to Gmail.

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Chinese paper blames Google for Gmail woes in the country

Chinese paper blames Google for Gmail woes in the country

Yesterday we talked a bit about Gmail problems in China and the fact that some in the country were blaming the outage on China's massive firewall known as the Great Firewall. Chinese state media has announced that the issue with Gmail in the country is Google's fault for not being willing to obey Chinese law. Chinese paper Global Times laid the blame squarely at Google's feet in an editorial.

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Gmail out in China: How much do you rely on one company?

Gmail out in China: How much do you rely on one company?

This week Gmail is out in China. Most Google services have been disrupted in China since June. Google's own traffic listing for Gmail in China shows the service dropping down to zero near the end of the 25th of December - it's been at around a zero signal since then. Imagine if this happened in the United States. Even a disruption of an hour in the USA results in a news blast and a Twitter explosion - imagine if not only Gmail was out, but all Google services at once.

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HTC Hima specs recited by benchmark

HTC Hima specs recited by benchmark

This morning we're seeing a benchmark readout which appears to confirm leaked specifications for the next HTC hero phone. This device is code-named HTC Hima, or HTC6535LVW, and it rolls with an odd combination of next-generation features and last-generation features. For example, this device comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor (next-fen) but uses a 1080 x 1920 pixel display (decidedly this-gen.) This device will likely be revealed in full inside the first month of 2015 for release in early Spring - or maybe even late Winter.

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Gmail unavailable in China, Great Firewall blamed

Gmail unavailable in China, Great Firewall blamed

Google's Gmail is the most popular email platform out there and the service is hated by some governments that want to keep the populace in the dark about what is going on in their country and the world around them. One of the countries that has a problem with freely disseminated information online is China and word has surfaced that Gmail has been blocked in the country.

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Global Music Rights threatens YouTube with lawsuit

Global Music Rights threatens YouTube with lawsuit

Google is making a strong push toward equipping YouTube with a plethora of legally sourced music (hence things like YouTube Music Key), but that doesn't mean illicitly posted videos have gone away, and as has always been the case, there are entities trying to get some of them removed. One such organization is Global Music Rights, which is threatening Google with a large lawsuit if it doesn't pull certain songs from YouTube, among them being popular hits by the Eagles and more.

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Google transparency report details content govs wanted nixed

Google transparency report details content govs wanted nixed

Earlier today, Google published its latest transparency report, and as with past ones it includes information on government data requests from around the globe. One big difference, however, is the inclusion of more than two dozen examples of content removal requests received from governments -- a first for the transparency reports, and an interesting look at what kind of content catches the attention of various agencies and entities. The content removal requests are detailed for past periods in addition to the latest reported period from July to December 2013.

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Five great IAP-proof kids games for iOS and Android

Five great IAP-proof kids games for iOS and Android

There's a big gap between a young child's love of smart devices and most parents' grasp of what games are good enough - or appropriate - for them to play with. While devices like the Fire HD 6 Kids Edition made some headway into the guidance business for children, we've got a lot of work to do! What follows is a relatively SHORT guide to get you started in the world of apps and games made for very young children - all of them without the threat of your child buying massive amounts of "coins" without your knowledge. One cost or free, then done - that's it.

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