Why Apple is cracking down on ‘free’ apps

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Apple is making more moves to clean up its App Store. 

After cracking down on outdated apps, the company is now placing restrictions on how developers describe their apps. Apple is now rejecting updated and new app submissions that have the word “free” in the name, VentureBeat reports.

“Your app’s name, icons, screenshots, or previews to be displayed on the App Store include references to your app’s price,” Apple reportedly pointed out.  

“Please remove any references to your app’s price from your app’s name, including any references to your app being free or discounted.” Read more…

More about Apple, Ios, Apps And Software, Tech, and Tech

Google is destroying Apple in the app game — except where it counts

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Android is dominating app stores but Apple is still beating Google in one extremely important metric: revenue.

Cupertino made nearly twice as much money from its App Store in 2017 as Google did from Google Play, despite seeing only a fraction of the downloads, according to a new report out today from App Annie.

Just how big is the difference? Apple made $34 billion on 29 billion app downloads in 2016, according to the company’s data. Google, by comparison, made $10 billion on 63 billion downloads in 2016. 

Put another way, Apple made more than three times as much money as Google with less than half as many downloads.  Read more…

More about China, Google, Android, Google Play, and App Store

Samsung’s Galaxy S8 has a killer feature that nobody’s talking about

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Samsung’s Galaxy S8 is packed full of awesome new features like the new larger screen, face recognition and Bixby AI assistant. But there’s one pretty killer feature on the phone Samsung didn’t bother to mention at its Unpacked event on Wednesday.

That feature: a built-in GIF maker. It’s not like the Smart Select GIF maker that first appeared on the Galaxy Note 7 and later trickled to Samsung’s Galaxy Tab A and Galaxy Tab S3. It’s even better.

Located within the Gallery app’s video section is a little GIF-creation tool that lets you convert a section of any video (even ones you record) into an animated GIF. Read more…

More about Smartphones, Android, Gif Maker, Gifs, and Galaxy S8

Facebook will launch group chatbots at F8

 Facebook will reveal at its F8 conference a new class of group bots that work inside Messenger group chats. These group bots can keep users informed about real-time news such as a sports game’s progress, ecommerce deliveries, and more, according to three sources familiar with the development of the feature.
Facebook is already working with top chatbot makers to prepare for the launch. Read More

Twitter’s live streaming app Periscope gets an analytics dashboard

 Trying to figure out this whole live video broadcasting thing? Good news! Periscope, the Twitter-owned live-broadcasting app, picked up a new trick this morning: a shiny new analytics dashboard. It’s not the most groundbreaking thing in the world, but it makes sense. Making a successful live video on the internet — particularly one that doesn’t involve video games or naked… Read More

The Galaxy S8’s fingerprint sensor will send you into a rage spiral

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There’s a lot to like about Samsung’s newly announced Galaxy S8 and S8+, like the gorgeous “Infinity” displays, faster performance, improved selfie camera. Hell, there’s even a headphone jack!

But can we talk about the fingerprint sensor for a minute? More specifically, the awful, terrible place Samsung decided to relocate it to.

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t know it was coming. Thanks to a steady flow of high-resolution leaked images that made their way onto the internet over the last few months, we’ve known for some time that the S8 wouldn’t have a fingerprint sensor/home button on the front. Read more…

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The Galaxy S8’s iris scanner fixes the one thing that made it suck on the Note 7

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One of the coolest features from the Galaxy Note 7 (RIP) is back and better on the Galaxy S8 and S8+.

I’m, of course, talking about the Note 7’s iris scanner. Samsung introduced the iris scanner on the Note 7 as an alternative way to secure the phone, but it wasn’t without its flaws.

Fast as it was, activating the iris scanner was kind of a pain in the ass. Allow me to quote myself:

And: 

Samsung’s fixed this complicated three-step process on the S8 and S8+. 

First, it’s now only two steps: Wake the phone up by pressing the power button or virtual home button and then look into the IR sensor on the top bezel. No more, swiping up to bring up the iris scanner preview/PIN lock screen. Read more…

More about Security, Android, Biometrics, Iris Scanner, and S8

Samsung’s new Gear 360 streams 360 live, and finally works with iPhones

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The Galaxy S8 and S8+ aren’t the only new gadgets Samsung announced at its big Unpacked event on Wednesday.

Along with the new flagship phones, Samsung also took the wraps off a new Gear 360 camera that’s smaller and more powerful than the original.

The new Gear 360 now records 360-degree video at true 4K resolution (3,840 x 2,160) compared to the original model, which topped out at 3,840 x 1,920.

More pixels will make for sharper 360 videos, but the two most compelling new features are 360 live streaming to YouTube, Facebook or Samsung VR (a third-party API could open 360 streaming to other services like Periscope), and iPhone support. Read more…

More about Galaxy S8, Cameras, Ios, Iphone, and Android

Facebook tests a second News Feed headed by a rocket ship icon

 Facebook’s launch of Stories may be the social network’s big news of the week, but some Facebook users have spotted another addition, and are thoroughly confused. A “rocket ship” icon has popped up in the app of select users worldwide, adjacent to the News Feed button. Its appearance is prompting a lot of users to wonder, “what on earth is this thing?”… Read More

Facebook pivots into Stories

 In its biggest change in a decade, Facebook is evolving from text and link-focused sharing to the visual communication format its admits “Snapchat has really pioneered”. Starting today, all users will soon have access to the new Facebook Camera feature that lets them overlay special effects on photos and videos. They can then share this content to a Snapchat clone called… Read More