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Tech Radar

Samsung launches app to locate lost Galaxy devices

Samsung Electronics today announced the launch of ‘SmartThings Find’, a new service that helps users quickly and easily locate Galaxy devices — smartphones, tablets, smartwatches and earbuds. SmartThings Find is now available on Samsung’s Galaxy devices globally after the service was tested by 6 million users in South Korea, the USA and the UK for about two months, the company said in a press statement. Samsung will provide a new software update for the service on Galaxy smartphones and tablets running Android 8 or later, Galaxy Watch smartwatches powered by Tizen 5.5 or above, and Galaxy Buds Plus and Galaxy Buds Live wireless earbuds. The technology behind SmartThings Find After completing a quick registration process, SmartThings users can easily find their Galaxy devices – from smartphones, tablets and smartwatches, down to each individual earbud.  The app uses Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and ultra-wideband (UWB) technologies to help people find their Galaxy products. “With the added advantage of using AR6 in conjunction with maps and sounds to guide you back to your devices, SmartThings Find is a simple and visual solution that will help you easily locate your favorite devices. This is just one example of the new meaningful mobile experiences that UWB technology will bring to people across the world,” said Jaeyeon Jung, Vice President and Head of SmartThings Team, Mobile Communications Business at Samsung Electronics. According to Samsung: Once a device has been offline for 30 minutes, it produces a BLE signal that can be received by other devices…Continue readingSamsung launches app to locate lost Galaxy devices

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The Verge

A new app helps gig workers find where to whizz

As businesses tighten entry restrictions because of the pandemic, delivery and ride-share drivers are struggling more than ever to find open and usable restrooms. An app, playfully named Whizz, is trying to help. Described as being developed “by gig workers for gig workers,” Whizz is a bathroom finding app that is partnering with restaurants to provide gig workers with some much-needed relief. The app displays partnered restaurant locations on a map, currently limited to Southern California and some locations in Arizona and Nevada. Users pick a nearby restaurant and show an employee their phone to gain access to their bathroom. While several public bathroom finder apps already exist, Whizz’s strategy is different in that it’s seeking partnerships with restaurants to provide not only bathroom access, but also deals for users of the app. Whizz attempts to incentivize restaurants with free advertising in exchange for bathroom access and promotional offers. When you pull up a partnered restaurant in the app, it displays a coupon for a certain percentage off an item or meal. Whizz’s first partnership is with Waba Grill, a rice bowl chain, which offers 20 percent off a chicken bowl and drink through the app. “I’m helping your business, but you won’t let me use your restroom.” This interest in partnerships is what makes Whizz’s approach potentially more effective than other bathroom finders, which tend to rely on public bathrooms or large stores like Walmart or Target. Co-founders Keith Crudupt and Robert Logan, who have both driven for Uber,…Continue readingA new app helps gig workers find where to whizz

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The Next Web

Google is testing a nifty app comparison feature in the Play Store

There are plenty of sites on the internet where you can compare the specs of gadgets such as phones, laptops, and cameras.But it’s hard to compare apps in the same way. However, Google’s testing a feature in the Play Store that lets you do just that. According to Android Police, if you have this feature, you’ll see a new comparison table below comments on an app’s page. In a GIF obtained by the publication, the section shows VLC pitted against other players with measures such as ease of use, offline playback, casting, and controls listed for evaluating apps against one another. Play Store app comparison experiment   Currently, the Play Store just shows the names of similar apps under an app’s page. [Read: Lenovo Legion 7i review: a great gaming laptop for grown-ups] This is a clever idea because the comparison table lets you check which players have specific features you might care about; the ability to stream or cast in the case of VLC. Android Police noted that the feature is currently visible Play Store version 22.4.28, but will only appear for some users and select apps. Since this is just a test, there’s no guarantee Google will roll it out for all users, but I certainly hope they do.  For more gear, gadget, and hardware news and reviews, follow Plugged on Twitter and Flipboard. Published October 29, 2020 — 09:42 UTC Source linkContinue readingGoogle is testing a nifty app comparison feature in the Play Store

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The Verge

Amazon is turning Audible into a true podcast app, but it’s got a long way to go

Audible is turning into more of a podcast app. The company announced today that its catalog now contains 100,000 free podcasts that are already available on other streaming platforms, including Pod Save America, This American Life, and Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend. The shows are now available through the app and will soon show up on Audible’s podcast landing page. Listeners won’t need a subscription to access these shows. This move sets Audible up to compete more earnestly against Spotify and Apple Podcasts, the two biggest names in the space, as well as other, smaller competitors. Audible, which is owned by Amazon, launched a new subscription plan called Audible Plus in August, which gives listeners access to Audible’s original audio content at a cheaper monthly cost. The catch is that they don’t receive credits to download ebooks that aren’t already free in Audible’s catalog. With these additional, freely available shows, Audible is bulking up its podcast offerings and making its app a place where its listeners can fulfill all their podcast needs, other than other services’ exclusive shows. Still, Audible has a long way to go to reach the scale of Spotify and Apple Podcasts. Spotify says it has at least a million podcasts available to listeners, and Apple says it has 1.5 million. Although Audible’s original pieces of content number around 11,000, it’s still significantly behind in the amount of content it offers. This is a start, though, and presumably the company will continue growing what its listeners can…Continue readingAmazon is turning Audible into a true podcast app, but it’s got a long way to go

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The Next Web

Microsoft unveils free app to create AI models without writing any code

Microsoft has released a public preview of a free app lets helps people train machine learning models without writing any code. The Lobe desktop app for Windows and Mac currently only supports image classification, but Microsoft plans to expand it to other models and data types in the future. “Just show it examples of what you want it to learn, and it automatically trains a custom machine learning model that can be shipped in your app,” the Lobe website explains. Users first need to import and label images of what they want Lobe to recognize. The app will then select a suitable open-source machine learning architecture for the dataset and start training the model on the user’s device. [Read: What audience intelligence data tells us about the 2020 US presidential election] You can also review the model’s performance through real-time visual results, offer feedback on its predictions, and correct inaccurate labels. Credit: Mike Matas, MicrosoftMicrosoft acquired Lobe in 2018 to make AI development more accessible. After training, the models can be exported to a variety of industry-standard formats and shipped on a platform of the user’s choice. Microsoft says early customers have used Lobe to build apps that identify harmful plants, detect beehive invaders such as wasps, or send people alerts when they’ve accidentally left their garage door open. If you want to join them, you can download Lobe here and view a video tutorial for the app here. Published October 27, 2020 — 13:12 UTC Source linkContinue readingMicrosoft unveils free app to create AI models without writing any code

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Tech Radar

YouTube mobile app gets interesting, fun features | TechRadar

YouTube has updated its mobile app with fresh features that helps viewing and controlling videos easier with new gestures, playback controls and video chapters. Among the changes, the interesting one is the update to enter and exit full screen mode while watching videos. It makes it all a child’s play: Just swipe up to enter full screen and down to exit. The gestures are said to work even when swiping on the playback window itself. YouTube, which claims it’s a global community of two billion people, said “we’re always looking for ways to make it easier to watch and interact with your favorite videos.” Video chapters tweaked (Image credit: YouTube) YouTube had unveiled ‘Video chapters’ last May to navigate easily to the ‘interesting’ part of any video without having to manually fast-forward. “Today, we’re extending this feature to include a new list view that you can find by tapping or clicking the chapter title in the player. You’ll be able to see a complete list of all chapters included in the video you’re watching, each with a preview thumbnail of what you’ll find in that chapter,” YouTube said. YouTube has also made captions more accessible by moving the closed captions button to the overlay menu.  The autoplay toggle button is also shifted to the top of the screen. A few other buttons have been re-arranged as well for a more simplified look. “You’ll also notice small improvements to the player, like re-arranged buttons that simplify its look and snappier controls…Continue readingYouTube mobile app gets interesting, fun features
| TechRadar

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The Next Web

YouTube’s mobile app gets several small tweaks to enhance the viewing experience

YouTube today announced a series of updates meant to make its mobile app more useful, including a streamlined player experience and new gestures. A few months ago, YouTube introduced the ability to easily create video chapters by simply typing some timestamps in your video’s description. The company is building on this feature today by adding a list view with thumbnails for every section of the video. This should make it easier to get to the relevant part of a video and makes chapters a little more prominent than they were before. The company is also adding a variety of gestures to make the playback experience smoother. You can now swipe up on a video to enter full-screen mode rather than poking on a little button or waiting for your phone to autorotate, which is somehow still painfully slow on some devices in 2020. You can also now tap on the timestamp to switch between elapsed time and a countdown, and the app will now provide automatic “suggested actions, which prompt you to rotate your phone or play a video in VR when we think you can have a better experience.” Lastly, YouTube says it has rearranged the player to make captions easier to access, with the requisite button now available right as an overlay on the video rather than hidden under a menu. The autoplay button is also now more prominent, making it easier to stop YouTube from sending you down a rabbit hole of videos — the company says it’s…Continue readingYouTube’s mobile app gets several small tweaks to enhance the viewing experience

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The Next Web

Avoid work from home burn out with this highly rated meditation app, now over half off

TLDR: With the Omvana Meditation app, users get help beyond calming anxiety to actually prompt real growth and improved results in your daily life. Most meditation courses and programs have the same basic purpose: to help you relax, center and find peace. Those are, of course, all very important, very worthwhile goals. However, if you’re going to put in the often significant time investment to meditate and focus and attempt to tap into your innermost self, then it might be worth getting even more out of the effort than some momentary calm. With the Omvana meditation app, their goal isn’t to get users better at meditation, but to get them better at navigating life. Right now, access to one year of their Omvana meditation services are available at almost 60 percent off its regular price, only $24.99 from TNW Deals. While Omvana can certainly help anyone alleviate stress, calm anxiety and boost focus, their offerings through working with the world’s best personal growth teachers aim even higher, attempting to help you achieve more in life and actually raise your performance level personally, and professionally as well as metaphysically. The Omvana app is home to a massive, ever-growing library of powerful meditations delivered by world-class instructors. Whether you want to lower your stress, get better sleep, or create better focus, users can find a meditation keyed to their specific need. From stress management to healing to attracting abundance to visualizing your ideal future and more, these teachings are led by top-flight…Continue readingAvoid work from home burn out with this highly rated meditation app, now over half off

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The Next Web

This app lets you ‘cut-and-paste’ real life objects

Apple has boasted a lot about the AR capabilities of its new LiDAR equipped iPhone 12 Pro. It means that your new iPhone will be able to ‘map’ the room better to place objects. However, I hadn’t found an AR app that I might use regularly — until now. A few months ago, developer Cyril Diagne showed off a demo of an app called ClipDrop that lets you ‘drop’ real-life objects to your desktop. Now, the app is here as a beta version, and I already love it. It’s pretty evident by the feature image of this story. Aaand here it is..!!! 😱 After months of hard work with @jblanchefr, @ClipDropApp beta (AR Copy Paste) is now publicly available on #Android, #iOS, #macOS, and #Windows 🔥 https://t.co/52eLMEfXNR 🔥 Here’s a thread of what you can already do with it ↓ 1/n#ML #AR #AI pic.twitter.com/0fQJQ8KRBv — Cyril Diagne (@cyrildiagne) October 22, 2020 The concept of the app is cool. You can take a picture of any object and the app with automatically remove the background and convert it into a image. You can then paste the image on your desktop and use it in your applications. In addition to object and people, you can also extract text from a book or page that you have. ClipDrop mostly does a good job of sperating the object in focus from the background. But sometimes you’ll see blurred edges or missed parts. Since the app is in beta stage, hopefully it’ll improve over time. It also…Continue readingThis app lets you ‘cut-and-paste’ real life objects

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Engadget

California Uber drivers sue company over Prop 22 app notifications

Uber didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. But the company isn’t the only one to face criticism for its lobbying for Prop 22. DoorDash, which also relies on gig workers, has been criticized for requiring its drivers to deliver orders in “Yes on 22” takeout bags. Update 10/22 4:23pm ET: In a statement, an Uber spokesperson called the lawsuit “absurd.” “This is an absurd lawsuit, without merit, filed solely for press attention and without regard for the facts. It can’t distract from the truth: that the vast majority of drivers support Prop 22 and have for months because they know it will improve their lives and protect the way they prefer to work.” Source linkContinue readingCalifornia Uber drivers sue company over Prop 22 app notifications