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Acer Predator gaming PCs, notebooks, Android tablets coming Q3, Q4

2 hours ago | Posted in: computers, gaming, gadgets

Acer revealed more than its new device launches at yesterday's event, teasing to attendees some upcoming gaming devices. A collection of distinctive systems under the existing "Predator" name were unveiled, which will include high-specification notebooks and PCs as expected, but it will also count an Android tablet built for gaming as part of the same product range.

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Luxottica CEO claims Google working on second version of Glass

5 hours ago | Posted in: gadgets

Google is working on a second generation of its Glass headset, the head of Luxottica has claimed. Massimo Vian, CEO of the Italian glasses producer, told attendees of the company's general meeting that a second version is under development with a future third variant of the smart headwear also being discussed by project engineers at the search giant.

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Briefly: Cricket adds calls to Canada, Swiss Post drone deliveries

7 hours ago | Posted in: industry, gadgets, mobile phones

Cricket Wireless is upgrading some of its plans to include unlimited international calls and texts to Canada. The $50 Smart Plan and the $60 Pro Plan will gain the extra calling option, joining its existing Mexico calling option, with both new and existing customers receiving the benefit. Customers on the $25 Talk & Text and $40 Basic plans will not receive the upgrade.

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Daily Deals: Crucial 960GB SSD, Jongo T2 speaker, Garmin Vivofit

11 hours ago | Posted in: computers, gaming, peripherals, gadgets, software, digital imaging, upgrades/storage, accessories, networking, audio, iPhone apps, Apple, iPad, iPad apps

Welcome to Daily Deals, the regular post where we search online and offline retailers for discounts, offers, and sales on an array of hardware and software for you, the discerning MacNN and Electronista reader. Today, we cover the still-active deals from throughout the week, while the new deals list includes a sub-$300 960GB SSD, the Pure Jongo T2 wireless speaker, and the Garmin Vivofit fitness band.

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Ahrendts in China, lines at boutique locations for Apple Watch launch

12 hours ago | Posted in: gadgets, Apple

While Apple has since abandoned its former April 24 retail launch day for the Apple Watch due to a global sellout, a few select stores -- almost entirely third-party fashion boutique sellers who secured allotments early -- are said to have or have had actual stock of Apple Watches to sell. Customers hoping to score one today are lining up outside these shops, even as Apple Retail chief Dame Angela Ahrendts spent the day in China.

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Samsung teases round face for next Gear smartwatch

14 hours ago | Posted in: gadgets, software, developer

The next smartwatch from Samsung is likely to have a round face, if a teaser image in a press release is to be believed. A release inviting developers to sign up for early access to a software development kit (SDK) for the manufacturer's "Next generation of the Gear device" has a supplementary image accompanying it, depicting a variety of round faces, strongly suggesting the watch will have one as well.

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Plug officially pulled on Time Warner Cable and Comcast merger

14 hours ago | Posted in: Investor, industry

As expected, Comcast and Time Warner Cable have both walked away from the blockbuster merger deal, citing governmental resistance from the Department of Justice and the Federal Communications Commission. In a statement about the collapse, Comcast CEO Brian Roberts said that "we would have liked to bring our great products to new cities, but we structured this deal so that if the government didn't agree, we could walk away."

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Briefly: Google Maps image insults Apple, X-Files HD hits Netflix US

15 hours ago | Posted in: industry, Graphics/Web Design

Users of Google Maps may find an odd image if they search Pakistan. Team Android reports someone has inserted an image of the Android mascot urinating on the Apple Logo. While it is unlikely to be an addition by a Google employee, it is possible that the image was added as part of Map Maker, a system that allows users to submit edits to the map for inclusion into the main Google Maps service, with the insulting image possibly overlooked during moderation.

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Apple Watch Sport laid bare in disassembly by iFixit technicians

15 hours ago | Posted in: gadgets, Apple

As is the norm for the iFixit crew, a teardown of a new Apple device has been accomplished -- this time, the 38mm Apple Watch Sport is on the disassembly bench. Alongside the breakdown, the company has disclosed the chipsets accompanying the watch, with a mix of new and old technologies combined in the device. In addition to well-known components, a couple of new discoveries were made.

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Apple Watch: now shipping, Watch App Store opens, Ion-X scratch test

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: gadgets, iPhone apps, Apple

There are an indeterminate number -- possibly as high as a couple of million -- very early pre-order customers who are very excited today, having received confirmation from Apple that their order for the Apple Watch has shipped. Various forms of evidence, from emails from the company notifying buyers of the status change to UPS alerts with tracking numbers has confirmed that a number of customers who got in early should be receiving their Watch order on or about April 24, the original planned public debut day.

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Acer Chromebook 15 CB3-531 offers 15.4-inch display, $200 price tag

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: computers

Acer has added another model to its 15-inch Chromebook range, this time one focused on users with tight budgets. The Chromebook 15 CB3-531 keeps the same 15.6-inch 1366x768-resolution display as its stablemates, but Acer has managed to refine the specifications list enough to make the Chrome OS notebook cost a relatively low $200.

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Microsoft profits down on reported revenue rise to $21.7 billion

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: Investor, industry

Microsoft today announced that revenues for the quarter that ended March 31 grew to $21.7 billion. Net income, however, was a bit less than expected, coming in at $5 billion -- a 12 percent drop from the same quarter a year ago. These financial results include $190 million of integration and restructuring expense related to Microsoft's turnaround plan, and the ongoing integration of the Nokia Devices and Services business.

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Amazon continues trend, posts $57 million loss on $22.7 billion sales

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: Investor, industry

Despite posting sales figures of $22.7 billion, e-retailer giant Amazon has posted a net loss of $57 million in its first quarter of business of 2015. Net sales increased 15 percent to $22.72 billion in the first quarter, compared with $19.7 billion in first quarter 2014. Excluding the $1.3 billion unfavorable impact from changes in foreign exchange rates throughout the quarter, net sales increased 22 percent compared to first quarter 2014.

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Google profit growth slows; capital expenditure, worker rolls grow

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: Investor, industry

Google today announced financial results for the quarter that ended on March 31. Google's first quarter revenue was $17.3 billion, up 12 percent from the same time period of 2014. Income for the company hit $3.6 billion, up from $3.5 billion, sitting in the middle of its own guidance, as well as meeting Wall Street estimates.

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Acer launches two Iconia tablets, brings Liquid M220 smartphone to US

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: gadgets, mobile phones

Acer has revealed two new Iconia tablets as part of its device launches today, as well as bringing one smartphone to the United States for the first time. The Iconia Tab 10 is a tablet aimed at education, the Iconia One 8 offers advanced touch capabilities, and the Liquid M220 smartphone running Windows Phone 8.1 will be arriving in Microsoft Stores in the coming months.

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Comcast, Time Warner Cable deal near death; may be slain tomorrow

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: Investor, industry

Facing stiff opposition from the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC), as well as staunch opposition from the Department f Justice and members of Congress, Comcast is reportedly going to drop plans to acquire Time Warner Cable. A final decision will be made today, and an announcement of the breakdown could be as soon as Friday, according to sources familiar with the matter.

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Daily Deals: Sony Action Cam, 3D scanner, Seagate 4TB NAS

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: computers, gaming, gadgets, digital imaging, upgrades/storage, accessories, networking, audio, iPhone apps, Apple, iPad, iPad apps

Welcome to Daily Deals, that time of the day when the staff of MacNN and Electronista search the Internet for sales, discounts, and offers, compiling the more notable items into a single post. The usual recap of still-active deals is joined by a Sony Action Cam, a 3D scanner, a Seagate 4TB NAS, and a new way to discover deals for yourself.

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Nokia courting Apple, others to buy Here mapping tech, reports claim

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: industry, iPhone apps, Apple, iPad apps

Apple and a number of other companies -- including Facebook, Amazon, Sirius XM, and China-based services Alibaba and Baidu are among many other firms being targeted by Nokia as it prepares to sell off its Here mapping service and technology. While Apple has periodically purchased map technology that can be integrated with its Apple Maps service in the hopes of eventual public transit data, Nokia may be overvaluing the deal.

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Briefly: Amazon trials delivery to cars, Carphone Warehouse iD launch

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: industry, mobile phones

Amazon is working with Audi to test home deliveries using the customer's car as storage. According to Ars Technica, Audi owners provide Amazon with an approximate location for where their car will be during a specific delivery window. A DHL delivery person will receive a one-time code to access the trunk of the car, allowing them to leave the parcel and close it, preventing access from anyone but the vehicle's owner. The trial will start next month in Munich, and is open to Amazon Prime members owning a compatible car.

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Researchers uncover flaw in fingerprint security in Android devices

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: security, mobile phones

The fingerprints of owners of some Android smartphones could be acquired by hackers, researchers claim. A flaw, said to affect the Samsung Galaxy S5 and other unnamed Android devices, allegedly allows an attacker to copy the biometric data on the device itself, suggesting that fingerprint-based security on Android is not as secure as first thought.

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Ricoh adds GPS, 'Pixel Shift Resolution' to Pentax K-3 II camera

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: gadgets, digital imaging

Ricoh has launched an updated version of its Pentax K-3 digital SLR from late 2013, improving a few elements while keeping the rest the same. Just like the original, the Pentax K-3 II has a 24-megapixel APS-C sensor, but this time Ricoh has introduced a Pixel Shift Resolution system, which uses the camera's shake reduction mechanism to move the sensor in single-pixel increments and capturing four images, combinable into one higher resolution photograph.

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Some boutiques will have Apple Watch available to sell April 24

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: gadgets, Apple

Most likely due to orders having been filled ahead of the April 10 pre-ordering debut of the Apple Watch, a handful of select high-end boutique outlets will actually have some Apple Watches for sale on April 24, as the company originally planned for its own stores. The boutiques are said to be receiving pre-alloted shipments of the Sport and Watch models, but the gold Edition version continues to be unavailable anywhere at retail.

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Review: Linksys WRT1200AC Dual-Band Gigabit Wi-Fi Router

Thu April 23, 2015 | Posted in: networking

Once upon a time, a brand-new Linksys router showed up on our doorstep. So we gathered some network-minded friends together, and hooked it up to the Internet. We ran it through its automatic set up, and downloaded a few iOS and Android apps that would allow us to do cool stuff like stream media from an external drive plugged into the router to our mobile devices or a Chromecast. We fiddled, poked, and prodded so we could report back. Over all, we had a good experience setting up and using the brand new model from Linksys, but it wasn't without its challenges. What challenges, you ask? Check our review and find out.

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Game Replay: Xbox One updates, ODST heading to Halo collection in May

Wed April 22, 2015 | Posted in: gaming

The Game Replay is a twice-weekly look at the wider world of gaming by the staff of MacNN and Electronista, noting a few of the major stories in the industry from earlier this week. Today's story collection includes incoming Xbox One changes, Gearbox Software's loss of the Borderlands creator, and more Halo content

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Facebook growth slowing, but still posts massive revenue of $3.5B

Wed April 22, 2015 | Posted in: Investor, industry

Facebook today reported financial results for the quarter that ended on March 31. Revenue for the first quarter of 2015 totaled $3.5 billion, an increase of 42 percent, compared with $2.5 billion in the first quarter of 2014. Revenue slightly missed Wall Street estimates, with the consensus being $60 million more than the company reported.

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Google reveals Project Fi as carrier with flexible data allowances

Wed April 22, 2015 | Posted in: industry, mobile phones

Google has confirmed earlier rumors that it was planning to launch its own wireless service. Project Fi is a virtual network that provides calls, texts, and data like other carriers, but the main feature of the service is that it will drastically simplify and potentially cheapen the user's bill, by asking customers to pay for the basic service and only for the amount of data they use in the month.

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