Not to spoil anything, but this week is all about our post-review thoughts regarding the iPhone 5c and 5s. Fret not, though! We also spared some time for LG's latest Android handset, the G2. Ready your ears and get to streaming below. This is the Engadget Mobile Podcast.
Producer: Joe Pollicino
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Apple's latest flagship smartphone is due in stores tomorrow morning, and naturally, iFixit has put one of the shipping units under a screwdriver before launch. We can't say we're surprised: these folks have sort of made a habit of it. The iPhone 5s teardown is currently marked as "in progress," but the disassembly artists have already found the device slightly more difficult to take apart than its predecessor, due to the Touch ID sensor's short connector cable. The new iPhone's 1560mAh battery (a modest upgrade from the iPhone 5's 1440mAh) is also held down by a ton of glue. The team expresses some concerns over the CMOS Touch ID sensor's sapphire crystal cover, cautioning that its accuracy could degrade over time if it isn't adequately protected. At the time of this writing, the 5s is still coming apart, and iFixit is adding more detail by the minute. Hop on over to the source link below to see the tear down in progress, or check back here later for an update with the company's final word.
Crowdfunding a project doesn't guarantee that it will be finished on time, or at all. Unfortunately, we're seeing an example of that uncertainty today -- Subutai has reduced its work on Neal Stephenson's Clang to an "evenings and weekends" schedule after running out of development money. Venture capitalists weren't willing to take a risk on a swordfighting game and invest the additional cash that the team had been counting on, according to Subutai. The company has shipped almost all of its promised Kickstarter perks, but it doesn't know if or when it will finish the software in question. There's still a way to help, however. Subutai suggests funding Sixense's Stem controller, which would at least bring a Clang-friendly peripheral to market.
After appearances in early FCC leaks and a quick preview this weekend, Sony has officially announced its next Google TV device, the BRAVIA Smart Stick. We already knew the MHL and USB connected dongle would only work with Sony's 2013 or later HDTVs, and its functionally similar to the company's previous Google TV boxes so what's left? Sony has revealed that the NSZ-GU1 carries a $149.99 pricetag and a bit more about the product's strategy. This stick doesn't replace the TV's built-in smart features, the UI is built so it "seamlessly integrates Google and Sony's own BRAVIA apps, allowing viewers to stay in a single menu to launch any of their apps." That also means owners don't have to switch inputs to access live TV thanks to the HDMI passthrough, and should offer quick access to BRAVIA apps not on Google TV like Hulu Plus. The downside? Its limited compatibility means it's no Apple TV or Roku alternative, and until software updates arrive it's not a replacement for Google's popular and cheap Chromecast HDMI dongle. If you have / plan to buy a new Sony HDTV and are interested in living the GTV lifestyle, you should find it at Sony Stores and "select retailers", although we couldn't locate one online (yet) after a brief search.
Source: Sony Blog
The big Y continues its Mayer-fueled reinvention with a long-awaited update to its My Yahoo personalized homepage builder. The online offering has gotten a new mobile-friendly overhaul, with the promise of more customization and content discovery. Users can add email accounts, calendars, stocks, sports and, naturally, Flickr. There are also a number of pre-fabbed layouts from designers like Oscar de la Renta and bands like Fun. And for good measure, Yahoo's added a link for porting over your settings from iGoogle. More info can be found in the source link below. Also, after the break, you'll find a video of DJ Clinton Sparks giving the new My Yahoo the wheels of steel of approval.
Source: My Yahoo
The California Public Utilities Commission approved ridesharing companies early this year, but it offered only a few temporary guidelines while it worked on a formal rule set. Today, the regulator has published those definitive rules. Companies like Lyft, SideCar and Uber now have to get a CPUC license to operate under a new Transportation Network Company category. To maintain that license, they'll have to run background checks, train drivers, hold a minimum level of insurance, inspect cars and drop employees who abuse alcohol or drugs. The requirements won't necessarily eliminate tension with Los Angeles and other cities that believe they have jurisdiction over taxi-like services. However, the CPUC's move gives California ridesharing companies a degree of comfort -- they can keep operating in many cities without fear of being shut down.
Filed under: Transportation
You might say the day is never really done in consumer technology news. Your workday, however, hopefully draws to a close at some point. This is the Daily Roundup on Engadget, a quick peek back at the top headlines for the past 24 hours -- all handpicked by the editors here at the site. Click on through the break, and enjoy.
'C,' it turns out, is for color -- not cookie, or cheap or China. Yes, the pretty in pastel iPhone 5c, Sir Jony Ive's repackaged ode to Apple's last-gen iPhone, as well as the iPhone 5s will be joining Three UK's lineup starting this Friday. The operator will be offering both iDevices on a two-year plan for an initial upfront payment of £49 and £99, respectively. That means you'll still have to pony up a monthly fee for either device, the amount of which depends on the particulars of your voice and data package. Regardless of which you opt for, however, the privilege to surf Three UK's (not yet live) 4G network is included at no additional cost. And it's unlimited.
Apple now offers native gamepad support in iOS 7, and ClamCase is making the most of that opportunity by unveiling the GameCase. The Bluetooth add-on will give iOS players a full-size, Xbox-like controller that should work in any title using the official gamepad API -- developers won't have to include proprietary code in their apps. ClamCase also promises ample play time through a built-in lithium-ion battery. The GameCase isn't expected to ship until late 2013 or early 2014, but there are plans to offer versions for all iPads and iPhones that run iOS 7. If you're interested, you can sign up for notifications from ClamCase at the source link.
Move over ad Twitter, here comes ad Pinterest. The social networking service, which allows users to "pin" items of interest (get it?) to digital boards, began offering personalized recommendations back in July. Now, it's taking the approach one step further with plans to introduce promoted pins from business accounts in search and category results. Pinterest is framing the move as an "experiment" for now, while promising all promoted pins will be clearly marked and relevant to user tastes. How thoughtful. And so begins the march towards profitability.
Filed under: Internet
We love what the Hyperkin Retron 5 brings to the table, namely compatibility with ten classic gaming system cartridges: NES, Famicom, Super NES and Famicom, Sega Master System, Genesis and Mega Drive, and Game Boy original, Color and Advance. The problem is, Hyperkin's played coy about it's price and availability... until now. It'll be available on December 10th, and it'll be on sale in both Europe (for €89.99) and in the US ($99.99). And, it turns out that the Retron 5 that'll go on sale will have a few more tricks up its sleeve than the prototype we played with back at E3. The exterior's been modified to better cool the internal components, and it'll pack a Sega Power Base Converter that lets you play Sega's Master System games. So, now you can officially start carving out space in your entertainment center for the Retron 5 -- which shouldn't be difficult once you've cleared out all the elder consoles it replaces. Less is more, people.
iOS 7 bug enables user to bypass lockscreen, send emails and status updates (update: Apple response)
The moment operating systems become available to the public is also the moment millions of people have the opportunity to hunt around and find bugs. And, it appears that at least one rather critical bug has already been discovered in iOS 7. A keen-eyed user found a way to bypass the passcode-protected lockscreen and gain access to the device's photos app, giving him the ability to hijack the email or social network account associated with that device. Essentially, you access the alarm clock through Control Center, make your way into the multitasking menu and head into the camera app from there. We've embedded the video evidence below, just in case you're interested in trying it out for yourself; we tested it out using an iPhone 5s running iOS 7.0.1, and were able to duplicate the user's claims.
This isn't the first time we've seen an iOS bug capable of bypassing your lockscreen and compromising the security of your device, and Apple typically squashes those bugs with patches; the last one took a month, however, so we'd like to see an update to iOS 7.0.2 a bit sooner than that. While you wait, the easiest way to avoid this concern is to disable the ability to access Control Center from the lockscreen (this can be found in the settings).
Update: Apple tells AllThingsD that it's aware of the bug, and that it's working on a fix.
We're getting more and more impatient waiting for Expand New York with every subsequent speaker announcement -- and we've got five more names to lay on you right now. This November, we'll be joined by Wikimedia's director of mobile, Tomasz Finc, Leap Motion's director of developer relations, Avinash Dabir, The One Laptop Per Child Association's chairman and CEO, Rodrigo Arboleda, founder / CEO of Voltaic Systems Shayne McQuade and Michael Carroll, a professor of law at American University Washington College of Law and founding member of Creative Commons.
And, of course, we've already announced a number of folks who will be joining us on November 9th and 10th, including LeVar Burton, Reggie Watts, Ben Heck, Peter Molyneux, Ben Huh and speakers from companies like Google, Sony, Pebble, Adafruit and The Electronic Frontier Foundation -- and we've still got more to come. Check out the full list below.
Filed under: Announcements
Source: Engadget Expand
Some users of Google's web-based products may have already seen the familiar black menu bar disappear from one Google site or another, but the company has now confirmed that was only just the beginning. It's announced today that a broader rollout is underway that will see most of its sites get a new "app launcher" in its place. That new interface should be familiar to anyone who's used Android or Chrome OS; it simply consists of a small icon in the top right of each page that expands to reveal a grid of larger icons. According to Google, the change is being done to make getting around various Google services more "seamless," and eliminate any distractions once you're inside an app.
Along with the menu bar change, Google has also confirmed that it's "refined the color palette and letter shapes" of its logo, and that the updated version of it will be making its way across the company's various offerings along with the new menu bar. You can apparently expect those changes to occur over the next few weeks.
Filed under: Google
Source: Google Inside Search
We've already seen Walmart undercut Apple by selling the iPhone 5c for less than the MSRP right out of the gate, but it turns out it's not the only retailer offering a deal. Target's also selling the 16GB version for $79.99 on a two-year contract from your choice of carrier, offering a savings of $20. You'll still pay the same $199.99 for the 32GB model, though, and there's no similar discount to be found on the iPhone 5s, either (Walmart has knocked it down ten bucks to $189). You'll find that price in store tomorrow, or you can get your pre-order in on Target's website now.
iPhone, youPhone, we allPhone for iPhone. Well, some of us do, at least. Those of us who actually managed to download iOS 7 yesterday, anyway. Welcome to the Engadget Podcast, where we separate the haves from the have nots. This time out, Brian will be joined by the triple-E, Engadget executive editor Marc Perton, plus TechCrunch's John Biggs and the usual assortment of stuffed animals.
Less than two weeks after Apple decided to make iWork free for new iOS devices, Google went and did us one better: it's offering its Quickoffice suite for free, to both Android and iOS users. If you recall, the apps have actually already been free to Google Apps subscribers, specifically, but now the offer applies to anyone, regardless of when they activated their device or what OS version they're using. As an added incentive, if you sign in to your Google Account from the Quickoffice app by September 26, 2013, you get 10 gigs of extra storage space for two years. And that's all there is to it. Hit up the source link for more details, if you need them, or else find the app on Google Play or the App Store.
When Google acquired Waze, it said that it would keep the newly purchased company at arm's length. Well, we now know exactly how separate Waze will be, at least for the foreseeable future. Google has promised the UK's Office of Fair Trading that it won't touch Waze's business operations while the British regulator determines its authority over the deal. The search giant has also offered to warn if there are any substantial changes in staff, business plans or customer numbers for both itself and Waze. The terms may not last forever -- if the OFT decides to review the acquisition, it can reject Google's offer. For now, though, Waze will (mostly) remain a distinct entity.
Source: Office of Fair Trading (PDF)
You don't have to ask Reggie Watts to make music. He just does. As he fumbles around for cords and components in the drawers and bookshelves of his Brooklyn apartment, everything that falls within eyeshot becomes a song. Spending a few minutes in his presence, you get the feeling that Watts would have been doing this in some form or other, no matter what career path he'd ultimately settled on, making a name for himself as the singing lawyer or beat boxing chef. But the stars aligned for the musician / comedian, aided in no small part by the increasing availability of cheap, affordable technology.
"I grew up in what i like to call 'the perfect technology curve,' " explains Watts. "When I was a kid, I had organic instruments. There wasn't super high tech stuff. All the super high tech stuff would have been way too expensive. The idea of owning a synthesizer in 1980 was insane for a kid. I [eventually owned] Casio keyboard. That was awesome. I got to experiment with that and make it do things it wasn't designed to do." The technology now forms the backbone of Watts' improvisational music making, inhibited only by the constraints of his knapsack. "Everything fits in my backpack," he says. "That's my setup, that's my rule. If anything else comes along, it would have to fit in my backpack."
There are plenty of gadgets that will stream music across the home, but few of them would satisfy the stereotypical audiophile. Cambridge Audio's just-shipped Minx Xi system may appease those fussier listeners. The WiFi sound hub includes its own 24-bit / 96KHz Wolfson DAC, a Class AB amplifier and even a toroidal power supply to minimize interference at higher volumes. It can also decode compression-free formats like AIFF, Apple Lossless and FLAC. There's no want for input sources, either. The Minx Xi takes local music from both Cambridge's mobile apps as well as devices with Bluetooth, optical output, UPnP and USB support; by itself, the hub streams services like BBC iPlayer, Pandora and Rhapsody. The Minx Xi isn't cheap at $899, but it's also one of the few networked audio devices that could be a true complement to high-end speakers.
Source: Cambridge Audio