In an effort to bring you guys, our loyal readers, some of the best deals of gadgets, consumer technology, games, software, and more, we've launched the brand new Gear Live Deals shop! A few times a week, we'll pick out and feature a particularly flossy bargain that we think you should jump on, but of course, you're also free to simply head over to the Gear Live Deals store and simply shop around and grab whatever strikes your fancy.
Today, we're launching with the Name Your Own Price Mac Bundle. Name your own price for 3 apps, or beat the average price paid and get all 10 apps, which include the amazing Fantastical (one of my favorite Mac apps) and Path Finder 6, among many others.
We wanna hear what you think as well! Let us know what kind of products you'd like to see featured in the Gear Live Deals shop, and we'll do our best to get them in there and bring you even more tremendous value.
Chris Weber is the CVP of Mobile Devices Sales at Microsoft, re-joining the company through it's purchase of Nokia, where he was in charge of global sales. He knows his way around every Lumia device, and is now aiming to make sure that Windows Phone first-party hardware is an even player at the devices table. We were able to sit down with Chris to talk about Nokia, Lumia, Windows Phone, and what changes need to be made in order to realize the success he is seeking. Check out the full interview below:
When is Windows Phone 8.1 coming out?
The answer varies by device and operator. The Lumia 630 and 635 are the first 8.1 products, launched internationally. We’re also working with our current products, and any Windows 8 phone is upgradeable to 8.1. There is currently a developer preview, but the operator version requires further testing. 8.1 is a completely different experience. Things like the background wallpaper, increased customization, and especially Cortana, which is one of the best features.
There are key differences between Cortana and similar services on other devices. It proactively learns. The other day I was flying to Moscow. The week before, it asked if it wanted me to track my flight to Moscow. There is a link that says "Do you want to know how I knew that?" Cortana looked at my calendar and started looking up flight numbers. It also has geo-fencing. You can say "Remind me that Ignacio owes me $100." I can say remind me when I send an email, when I arrive home, etc. Or "Remind me to pick up my dry cleaning" and when you get in the area, the message pops up. "Remind me to pick up milk at the grocery store” and you get the choice of having it remind you when you are near any grocery store, not just one specific one.
Back to being on the plane, I said "Remind me to download the music for guitar when I get home." It's really, really good. Flow writing, which is similar to Swype, means I can do emails faster on my phone than on the keyboard now. I got a new phone and it wasn't running 8.1 and the hunt and peck was tough!
Yes, it’s true—Microsoft is about to get into the smartwatch game, and I got the opportunity to play with it. As we'd previously reported, Microsoft has filed a patent that details a smartwatch. However, often these patent filings aren’t exactly what we see companies end up releasing. So, let’s separate the cruft and get to the meat of the matter. A number of months ago I took a trip to New York where I came across someone who was testing the upcoming Microsoft wearable device. I saw it on their wrist and asked about it. They tried to explain that it was a random fitness wristband ordered from China at first, but eventually (with some prodding) gave me the scoop. Here is your exclusive first look at what Microsoft is planning for its first wearable smart device, what we are referring to as the Surface Watch:
- As far as looks, the image above is a parody, but not far off. It has an elongated form factor, but isn't as comically large as what's in the image. It is much more akin to something like the Fitbit One or Samsung Galaxy Gear Fit in shape rather than taking on the shape of a traditional watch, like Pebble did, or like what Google showed off with Android Wear. What we saw had a flat display, while the inner portion that would rest against your skin was curved.
- The icons are the flat style that Microsoft has been using on its other devices like Windows 8, Windows Phone, and Xbox One. That's what tipped me off in the first place.
- Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy is how it interacts with the rest of the world
- The flat glass display, and was definitely not high resolution. We hope that both of these change in the final product--a high-resolution curved display already exists on the Samsung Gear Fit, and the Microsoft device just didn't look as good.
- The watch is packed with sensors. It has a heart rate monitor, accelerometer, gyroscope, GPS, and most interestingly, a galvanic skin response sensor all built-in. The galvanic skin response sensor is built into the watch band, while everything else is built into the unit itself.
With plenty of people now running both iOS 8 beta and OS X Yosemite Developer Preview in order to kick the tires on Apple's upcoming operating systems, we're hearing that a lot of people are confused as to how to get the cool Handoff feature working. Handoff, announced during the WWDC 2014 keynote, is what allows the two operating systems talk to each other and pass app information back and forth seamlessly. Here's how you do it:
Yesterday, Apple released the first OS X Yosemite Developer Preview following its WWDC 2014 keynote, allowing beta testers early access to its next big desktop operating system update. While many appreciate the new, overhauled appearance of the OS, many forgot that this was beta software they were installing, and that all bets were off as far as bugs and other issues went. One of the big ones if you edit videos is that both Final Cut Pro X and iMovie won't launch by default in the initial Yosemite Developer Preview. We were able to find a way around this:
- Head to your Applications folder in Finder
- Right-click the Final Cut Pro or iMovie app icon
- Select "Show Package Contents"
- Go into the Contents folder
- Go into the MacOS folder
- Double-click on the app icon (either Final Cur Pro or iMovie)
This will launch the Terminal app first, and then should launch the video editor after a few Terminal commands go through. It's not a perfect solution, but it's one that we've found will work for now, at least until Yosemite Developer Preview 2 is released in what we guess will be a couple of weeks.
Last year, HTC impressed us with the release of the original HTC One, a phone that featured what we believed to be the best build quality of any Android smartphone. This year, the HTC One (M8) takes its place as the flagship handset from HTC.
On the surface, the HTC One (M8) improves upon the original in a multitude of ways. Faster internals. Dual-lens UltraPixel camera. Larger display. Improved industrial design. The question is, though, does the final product add up to being another that can stand above the crowded Android line-up? We've put the device through its paces, and we are here to answer all of those questions here in our full HTC One (M8) review.
Last week, WWE Superstars and Divas visited Langston Hughes Academy Elementary school in New Orleans, LA for the annual WrestleMania Reading Challenge event in conjunction with The Pearson Foundation and the Young Adult Library Services Association. Children in the school gathered in the gymnasium, where they were able to meet AJ Lee, Cody Rhodes, and Stephanie McMahon after learning about the We Give Books ReadMobile and how it travels the country promoting literacy. The Superstars took turns reading a book called Otis by Loren Long, about a little tractor who could.
Hot on the heels of the release of LEGO The Simpsons House 71006, the first 16 LEGO Simpsons Minifigs have been revealed. They all look great, and we're sure Chief Wiggum appreciates the slimming down that LEGO happened to give him. Each Minifig will cost $4, and they'll hit stores in time for the LEGO-themed episode of The Simpsons that's set for May 4th on FOX. Check out each Minifig over in our LEGO Simpsons Minifig gallery.
If you love tech and geeky goodness and haven't heard of Loot Crate, where have you been?! We are big fans of the subscription box, which delivers a bunch of cool, geeky gear and nerdy swag that happens to fit our lifestyle perfectly. Each box contains 6-8 new items, all within a common theme, kept secret until they're delivered. The theme we are giving away this time is LAUNCH. What's in the box? Take a look:
- Superman POP! Vinyl - Funko
- Star Wars Galactic Phrase Book - Randomhouse
- Minecraft 2014 Calendar - Trends International
- Star Wars Pocketmodel TCG - Wizkids
- Melting Rubik's Cube - Walls360
- Star Trek Communicator Badge - Walls360
- NASA "Meatball" Emblem Patch - A-B Emblem
Cool, right? Ready to enter? Simply use the widget below to keep track of your entries! If you're a Gear Live Patreon backer at any level, you get an extra 25 entries in this giveaway! We've got a lot of ways for you to enter even if you aren't, but don't check off any that you don't actually perform. If you do, you'll be eliminated:
Oh, and if you wanna get in on all this awesomeness, use this link to get $3 off a Loot Crate subscription!
Remember our Jawbone Mini Jambox Valentine's Day giveaway package? Well, we have a winner! Check out the video above, where we announce who walked away with the Red Jawbone Mini Jambox, Otterbox Defender for iPhone 5 & 5s, and the iPhone 5c Inlay Case from Sonix. We have more giveaways coming later this week, and as always, our supporters get 25 bonus entries in all Gear Live contests (as well as a bunch of other cool perks!)