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Updated: 14 hours 19 min ago

Tiny Tower breaks ground on Android

Sun, 11/20/2011 - 01:07

Android takes another step closer to iOS's arguably superior gaming offering, adopting cult low-fi sim Tiny Tower. Froyo is the minimum requirement for the game run, but given the very dominant status of Android 2.0 and up, most won't find it an issue. This management sim lets you create a mix of businesses and attractions to draw Bitizens (the pixelated chaps you see above) to come live, work and play in your property. There looks to be some kind of smartphone game exchange going on, with this not-so-tiny timesink transfer following the recent appearance of Minecraft on iOS. Those willing to write off the rest of the weekend can download it now at the source below.

[Image credit: Box Brown]

Tiny Tower breaks ground on Android originally appeared on Engadget on Sun, 20 Nov 2011 02:07:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Apple patent application aims to keep iPhones shatter-proof with shock mounted glass

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 23:06
From 'smart' pens to a smarter Siri, Apple's always attempting to find new ways to improve the iPhone, and the company's latest patent application wants to keep its crack-prone glass blemish free. Aptly named a "shock mounting cover glass in consumer electronic devices," the invention claims a tunable shock mount sandwiched between the phone's glass and other hardware. There's also plans for a sensor that can distinguish a "drop event" from normal phone movements and an actuator to prepare the shock mount for impact. Given that it's only at the application stage, we won't be seeing bombproof iPhone displays any time soon, but here's hoping it'll become a product reality someday. Mostly so we can see just how much of a beating it can take.

Apple patent application aims to keep iPhones shatter-proof with shock mounted glass originally appeared on Engadget on Sun, 20 Nov 2011 00:06:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Android.com easter egg has the robot doing the moonwalk (video)

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 22:02
It's Easter in November! At least over at Android.com. The website's latest refresh brought us a whole lot of Ice Cream Sandwich, but the real treat's a bit of a hidden gem. Google's new site's packing an easter egg in the lower-left hand corner that has the little green robot doing the moonwalk, waving hello and juggling among other things. You can check it out in the video after the break, but the real fun awaits you at the source link below.

Continue reading Android.com easter egg has the robot doing the moonwalk (video)

Android.com easter egg has the robot doing the moonwalk (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 23:02:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Ask Engadget: best DIY wireless home security (and fire) system?

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 20:52
We know you've got questions, and if you're brave enough to ask the world for answers, here's the outlet to do so. This week's Ask Engadget inquiry is coming to us from Roger, who is just about tired of hearing "ADT." If you're looking to send in an inquiry of your own, drop us a line at ask [at] engadget [dawt] com.

"I'm moving into a new place, and I need a good wireless home security and fire system. But here's the thing -- I only have a broadband internet connection and a cellphone. I can't use one of those traditional ADT systems that require a landline, and moreover, the $40+ per month they charge is outrageous. I need a DIY option that monitors both security and fire, and I'm fine paying up to $25 or $30 a month for UL-certified off-site monitoring. SimpliSafe and Lifeshield seem decent, but the former doesn't monitor fire yet. Support for live feeds and alerts on my smartphone would be a huge plus. Thanks!"

Looks like SimpliSafe will be the perfect solution when it adds fire support in 2012, but Roger needs help in the here and now. Any paranoid homeowners out there have any other awesome suggestions? Drop 'em in comments below!

Ask Engadget: best DIY wireless home security (and fire) system? originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 21:52:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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3D-printed tail hooks up with Arduino, wags the dog (video)

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 19:29
In the year 3000, surgeons should be able to graft animal body parts onto our willing flesh. But, let's be real, aside from a reanimated Walt Disney (ok, not really), most of us won't live to see that scifi horror-filled day. Filling in, for the time being, is a nifty Arduino hack from the mind of one Artharis that breathes erratic life into a 3D printed tail. Its clumsy flailing is more disturbed-dragon-with-ADHD than aroused puppy, but we'll take what we can get for now. Shame, though, that Halloween's already come and gone, otherwise this would've made for a nice house party icebreaker. Peep the spastic animatronic in motion after the break.

Continue reading 3D-printed tail hooks up with Arduino, wags the dog (video)

3D-printed tail hooks up with Arduino, wags the dog (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 20:29:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Engadget Mobile Podcast 113 - 11.19.2011

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 19:00
Everyonce in a while, a phone so huge, so spectacular, so...galactic comes along that it eclipses all other news, distracting podcast hosts to the point of almost-no-return. The Galaxy Nexus did that for Myriam this week, and luckily Brad and Joseph had an extra pair of hands to bring her back from the fold: Aaron Baker of phonedog.com. More than two hours of mind-bending mobile analysis lies within.

Hosts: Myriam Joire (tnkgrl), Brad Molen, Joseph Volpe
Producer: Trent Wolbe
Music: Tycho - Coastal Brake (Ghostly International)

00:02:00 - Galaxy Nexus HSPA+ first impressions (video)
00:31:30 - Verizon-branded, LTE-enabled Galaxy Nexus confirmed in official Google video
00:49:30 - HTC Rezound Review
01:18:00 - Samsung Focus S Review
01:19:44 - HTC Sensation XL Review
01:23:25 - QNX-based BlackBerry 'London' purportedly shown off, dummy unit-style
01:25:30 - BlackBerry Bold 9790 hands-on (video)
01:27:20 - RIM unveils BlackBerry Bold 9790, Curve 9380, hitting the market within weeks
01:33:06 - Gmail app for iOS returns, promises to stay
01:33:58 - AT&T releases on Nov 20: Pantech Pocket, Samsung Captivate Glide and Doubletime
01:40:00 - Aaron Baker of phonedog.com










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Engadget Mobile Podcast 113 - 11.19.2011 originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 20:00:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Say hello to the iShred, snowboarders' tribute to Steve Jobs (video)

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 18:13
Every third Thursday, the team at California based Signal Snowboards like to spice things up some and make something a little more outside the box. This time around the team decided on creating a fitting tribute to Steve Jobs -- a custom ride complete with built-in iPad -- and thus the iShred was born. By no means a cut-and-shut affair, the team take inspiration from the simple, yet creative, design principles that led to ideas like the iPad Smart Cover. A layer of ABS with a cut out for the screen sits atop an all aluminum base, sandwiching an Apple-esque illuminated Signal logo -- presumably so you know when your WiFi is on while heading off-piste. Power is cleverly supplied only when contact is provided by the presence of a rider. If you think this is all just for show, think again, as they final product gets taken out on the slopes and put through its paces, complete with a bit of après-ski Facetime.

Continue reading Say hello to the iShred, snowboarders' tribute to Steve Jobs (video)

Say hello to the iShred, snowboarders' tribute to Steve Jobs (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 19:13:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Freescale Home Health Hub wants to usher in the era of connected medical devices

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 17:07
Freescale has its little silicon hands in all sorts of things: e-readers, smartphones, tablets, even refrigerators. Now the manufacturer is looking to make a dent in the healthcare industry with a connected platform called Home Health Hub (HHH). The i.MX28-based HHH isn't an actual product, but a reference platform for others to build on. The ARM9 processor is connected to a host of networking interfaces, including WiFi, Bluetooth (as well as its low-power implementation), Zigbee, sub-1GHz and Ethernet. The Hub is supposed to be just that, a central point for connecting various medical devices like blood pressure monitors or glucometers that then feeds data to a tablet. Developers and other interested parties can get their hands on the reference platform from Digi International as the iDigi Telehealth Application Kit for $499. Check out the full PR after the break.

Continue reading Freescale Home Health Hub wants to usher in the era of connected medical devices

Freescale Home Health Hub wants to usher in the era of connected medical devices originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 18:07:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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How-to: use Google Music from anywhere (yes, outside of the United States)

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 16:02
Now that Google Music has finally clawed its way out of the realm of beta-ware, anybody in the US can sign up to play without an invitation. Of course, that leaves many folks out of the equation, so we thought it a good time to point out at least one other route to let you get involved in the service, no matter where you live. See, the rub seems to be that Google checks your IP address on your first attempt to log in, and accept its terms of use -- only the first time, and yeah, you're definitely going to be ignoring that doc by following this guide.

So, in essence all we need to do is find a way to gently tiptoe past that gatekeeper and we're home free. Keep in mind that while you can upload your music, buying new tracks isn't going to happen until it rolls out in your neck of the woods in a more official way -- but hey, most of a good thing is still a good thing. There are various means to get this done, and we've found a pretty straightforward route, and if you're up to it click on through to the guide.

Continue reading How-to: use Google Music from anywhere (yes, outside of the United States)

How-to: use Google Music from anywhere (yes, outside of the United States) originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 17:02:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Didn't get the AppleCare+ with your iPhone? Worry not, you now have 30 days to change your mind

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 15:13
AppleCare+, Cupertino's latest protection plan, debuted on the same day the iPhone 4S was unveiled, but anyone wanting to take advantage of the two-year warranty and accidental damage coverage was required to fork out an extra $99 at the same time they bought their phone. While Apple allowed early adopters to buy the service until November 14th because they weren't offered it upon pre-ordering, it appears the company's extended that window until December 15th, according to an internal memo leaked to SprintFeed. What's better, it seems that Apple's softening up its policy for everyone else during the holidays, as the company now offers a 30-day window just in case you walk out of the store with your glass-laden treasure unprotected and change your mind later. Apple's site confirms the policy (shown below), but as always, there's a catch: if you choose to get it after point of purchase, you'll need to either call up Apple directly or schedule a Genius Bar appointment, bring your receipt in and have the phone inspected to ensure it's not already damaged. Seems like a lot to do, but just make sure you use that Reminders app to keep track of it all.

Continue reading Didn't get the AppleCare+ with your iPhone? Worry not, you now have 30 days to change your mind

Didn't get the AppleCare+ with your iPhone? Worry not, you now have 30 days to change your mind originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 16:13:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Wave Glider robots set out to explore the seven seas, break the Guinness record

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 14:04
It's a bird, it's a plane, nope, it's Liquid Robotic's four Wave Gliders on a mission to snag the Guinness World Record for longest distance traveled on Earth by an automaton. Setting out today from the San Francisco Bay, the autonomous sea-faring crafts will travel far and wide to gather data about the world's oceans. Powered by the water's movement, the vessels are fuel-free, using "flapping" wings to move forward without human command. Tricked out with various solar-powered sensors, the robots can capture location, weather, temperature, wave height, barometric pressure and more throughout their travels. The 198.4 pound machines cost between $250,000 and $500,000 each depending on how many sensors are built-in -- a small price for scientists or commandeering pirates hoping to learn more about the 95 percent of ocean that has yet to be explored. Let's just hope they don't run into one of these guys.

Wave Glider robots set out to explore the seven seas, break the Guinness record originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 15:04:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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T-Mobile Vivacity unveiled for the UK, appears to be an adopted ZTE handset

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 12:43
G'morning there good lady, and who might you be? Why, she's the UK-bound T-Mobile Vivacity, which, while pretty likely to be a ZTE-born smartphone, is still keeping her specification cards close to its chest. We do know, however, that she'll arrive with a 3.5-inch touchscreen and five megapixel camera on the back. A front-facing shooter, slightly larger body and a distinct lack of ZTE branding all help to differentiate the Vivacity from her sister, the previously announced (and US-destined) ZTE Score. We predict she probably won't be a woman of expensive tastes, and we look forward to meeting her in the flesh next month. While T-Mobile may not have got the memo about phone naming, interested parties can stake their claim to more info at the sign-up link below.

T-Mobile Vivacity unveiled for the UK, appears to be an adopted ZTE handset originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 13:43:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Sony's HMZ-T1 headset gets a DIY VR upgrade (video)

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 10:55
Sony's new HMZ-T1 headset may look like the virtual reality headset you always dreamed of back in the 1990s, but it's not -- at least, not out of the box. It's simply a wearable 3D display, with none of the head-tracking capabilities necessary for a truly immersive experience. Of course, that little drawback isn't going to stop the more DIY-minded individuals among us, one of whom has now paired the headset with a TrackIR 5 head-tracking device and demonstrated the results on YouTube. Check out some VR-ified World of Warcraft and Skyrim after the break.

Continue reading Sony's HMZ-T1 headset gets a DIY VR upgrade (video)

Sony's HMZ-T1 headset gets a DIY VR upgrade (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 11:55:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mobile Miscellany: week of November 14, 2011

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 09:32
This week was packed with news on the mobile front, so it was easy to miss a few stories here and there. Here's some of the other stuff that happened in the wide world of wireless for the week of November 14, 2011:
  • Sony Ericsson has teamed up with Ingram Micro, a distributor that ships phones to Amazon, Buy.com, Best Buy and Newegg, to expand the distribution of its Android lineup in the US. The deal will include a healthy chunk of the Xperia series, including the arc S. [PRNewswire]
  • Like the Motorola Defy+ but it's just not tough enough? Check out the limited-edition JCB version of the rugged device, which adds a hardcore JCB case, a special app with handyman tools and a two-year extended warranty. And it can be yours through Clove on December 6th for £219. [TechDigest]
  • Verizon introduced the LG Extrovert, a prepaid device with a slide-out four-row QWERTY, 2.8-inch WQVGA (400 x 240) touchscreen display, 2MP camera and expandable storage. It, however, lacks 3G data. It's all yours on Verizon's prepaid site for $110. [PhoneArena]
  • Speaking of Big Red, the rugged Casio Gz'One Ravine 2 was launched this week, and can be yours for $150 with a two-year contract. [PhoneScoop]
  • The BlackBerry Bold 9790, announced this week, is confirmed to show up in the UK on Vodafone and O2, likely sometime in January. [Unwired View]
  • SFR is selling the ZTE Tania, but it appears to be sold as a carrier-branded Windows Phone. You can purchase it without a contract for €269, or with a two-year commitment for €9.99. [MobileTechWorld]
  • Twitter for Windows Phone just got updated to be compatible with Mango. It's meant to offer a smoother experience, but doesn't bring any new features with it. [WMPowerUser]
  • Fandango debuted a new paperless ticket system, in concert with Regal-owned theaters, which can send a scannable bar code to your phone when you want to go see a movie. The ticket-takers then simply scan the code and you're all ready to root on Team Edward in the latest Twilight movie. Just don't forget the popcorn. [Yahoo!]

Mobile Miscellany: week of November 14, 2011 originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 10:32:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Wolfram Alpha search engine now tracks flight paths, trajectory information

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 07:56
If you've ever looked up in the sky and wondered where a plane might be headed, Wolfram Alpha might just know the answer. The search engine, which recently began incorporating data from the FAA can now, with a five-minute delay from real-time data, use a flight's speed, heading and altitude to offer a projection of a plane's position. A search for 'flights overhead' via the Wolfram Alpha web site or app will use your location to pinpoint flights that should be visible to you. That string currently only works if the flight has at least one endpoint in the United States, so tracking international flights might be limited. Even so, this should allow you to look up flight delays, check when the next flight will be, see a cool interactive sky map and track a specific flight, of course. You'll have no valid excuse for being late to pick a friend up from the airport ever again.

Wolfram Alpha search engine now tracks flight paths, trajectory information originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 08:56:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Coda lowers price of electric sedan, sends it into production ahead of 2012 launch

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 06:28
Coda Automotive has set some lofty goals for its forthcoming all-electric sedan, and this week, it began pursuing them. On Tuesday, the upstart manufacturer confirmed that production of its 2012 Coda Sedan is already underway, with the first deliveries scheduled to roll out in January. With an estimated range of 150 miles, the sedan will also be powered by a 36-kWh battery pack, providing it with 134 horsepower. Most intriguing, however, is the car's new price, which now sits at $39,900, compared with the $44,900 price tag announced earlier. That puts it well within range of competitors like the Ford Focus Electric and Nissan Leaf, though as Coda's Thomas Hausch explained to AutoblogGreen, the change isn't exactly a "price drop," since the Sedan hasn't actually been sold at its earlier price point. Technicalities aside, it's now cheaper than previously expected, which is all that really matters for your bottom line. Full PR after the break.

Continue reading Coda lowers price of electric sedan, sends it into production ahead of 2012 launch

Coda lowers price of electric sedan, sends it into production ahead of 2012 launch originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 07:28:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Sprint rides the Express to Budget Town, available now for $20

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 04:38
Do you choo-choo-choose the Sprint Express, or does it choose you? The Now Network's mixing things up this holiday season by adding its own branded device -- in reality, a reworked Huawei Boulder that Sprint slapped its name on -- to the low end of its smartphone lineup. Known simply as the Express, it's a portrait QWERTY Android 2.3 handset that will set you back $20 with a two-year contract (after a $50 mail-in rebate). What you'll get in return for that hard-earned Jackson is a 2.6-inch QVGA (320 x 240) display, 3.2MP camera, 256MB of RAM, 512MB of internal storage (with expandable microSD slot), a 1,500mAh battery and a 3G mobile hotspot that supports up to five devices. We doubt it'll be the first stop on anybody's Black Friday shopping list, but we think it may actually get penciled into the schedule somewhere.

Continue reading Sprint rides the Express to Budget Town, available now for $20

Sprint rides the Express to Budget Town, available now for $20 originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 05:38:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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TV broadcasters hope to dominate the second screen with ConnecTV

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 04:35
No one has quite figured it out yet, but there seems to be little doubt that tablet devices have their place on the couch to serve as a second screen while Americans enjoy their favorite past time -- watching TV. In addition to many independent startups we've discussed in the past, the old guard, that already owns most of broadcast TV stateside, has a startup of its own called ConnecTV. In development for two years already, ConnecTV is currently in beta and has the hopes to go live in January. The idea is of course to put what you might want to see on your second screen while you watch the main action on the big screen. This includes sports scores, statistics, as well as what your friends may or may-not be saying on Twitter or Facebook -- and of course advertising. We'd be shocked if most tablet owners weren't already using their slate in front of the TV and can imagine how many more might if there was a great app that brought it all together.

TV broadcasters hope to dominate the second screen with ConnecTV originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 05:35:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Jay Leno's Chevy Volt still has original tank of gas, 11,000 miles later

Sat, 11/19/2011 - 03:18
What daily driver do you pick when you're rockin' a warehouse with over a hundred enviable whips? Well, if you happen to be a famous comedian named Jay Leno, apparently it's the Chevy Volt. Since procuring the plug-in chariot last year, the late night star has "yet to put gas in it," despite accumulating over 11,000 miles driving to and from what we'll assume is The Tonight Show. Not all of that has been gasoline-free automotive bliss, as Leno's exceeded the car's electric 40-ish mile range more than a few times, burning through around half of the vehicle's original tank. At that rate, the Volt will need refueling by this time next year -- or not, barring any further timeslot kerfuffles.

Jay Leno's Chevy Volt still has original tank of gas, 11,000 miles later originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 19 Nov 2011 04:18:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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