Walyou » Technology http://walyou.com Cool Gadgets, New Gadgets, Tech News and Geek Design Wed, 26 Nov 2014 12:00:24 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.1 Hollywood Launches ‘Where to Watch’ In Effort to Fight Piracy http://walyou.com/hollywood-launches-where-to-watch-in-effort-to-fight-piracy/ http://walyou.com/hollywood-launches-where-to-watch-in-effort-to-fight-piracy/#comments Tue, 25 Nov 2014 12:00:00 +0000 http://walyou.com/?p=196326

As piracy issues plague the movie and TV industry more than ever, Where to Watch is the latest initiative out of Hollywood to fight unlawful media viewing.

While the Internet helps the movie and TV industry get the word out about their content (as well as make money through licensed avenues like Netflix and Hulu) it also provides them with a giant headache. Namely, piracy.

As broadband speeds get faster and people are more in-tune with technology, many people are finding illegal ways to watch the TV shows and movies that they love. Through means of torrenting or streaming, people are circumventing legal avenues of viewership instead of just tuning in or paying for movie tickets.

Throughout the years, Hollywood has gone to great measures to prevent this including DMCA (copyright) notices to take down files and the lobbying of copyright laws that have led to several high profile arrests. None of it has been particularly effective though which is why companies have banded together to launch ‘Where to Watch’.

Where to Watch (helpfully located at WhereToWatch.com) is a search engine that tells you where to watch whichever TV or movie that you’ve typed into it. Free to use, Where to Watch will tell you where to watch that TV show or movie online, with some content sources including Netflix, iTunes and Xbox Video.

Furthermore, when streaming options aren’t available, the site will suggest physical alternatives. For example, it will suggest DVD/Blu-ray purchases or rentals for older content and for new releases it will recommend local show-times if you enter your ZIP code too.

One massive oversight is it doesn’t tell you ‘Where to Watch’ the movie or TV show on your actual television. So if your favourite holiday movie is showing on ABC Family (per their annual 25 Days of Christmas promotion), the Where to Watch site will still direct you to Netflix etc. instead.

Furthermore, Hollywood’s plan is inherently flawed because they clearly don’t understand that people aren’t just pirating because they don’t know where to watch these things, but many people pirate media because they can’t afford it. So directing them to places where you have to pay to watch those things legally isn’t going to solve any problems.

Alas, it is a step towards combatting piracy that isn’t ‘throw everyone in jail’ so perhaps this can be considered as ‘progress’.

Source: Where to Watch

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Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 MDP Brings 64-bit Computing to Android http://walyou.com/qualcomm-snapdragon-810-mdp/ http://walyou.com/qualcomm-snapdragon-810-mdp/#comments Mon, 24 Nov 2014 20:39:45 +0000 http://walyou.com/?p=196353

Qualcomm does not intend to compete against other manufacturers of Android devices with their newly launched smartphone. Instead, this is meant as a platform developers and device manufacturers can work on without any hardware limitations.

The Qualcomm smartphone is any Android software or hardware developer’s dream, as it has some extreme features. That being said, it’s rather unusual for a chipset manufacturer to launch a full-fledged device in order to showcase the capabilities of a mobile CPU. The MDP (Mobile Development Platform) smartphone features the newly-developed 64-bit octa-core CPU, 4GB of RAM, an Adreno 430 GPU and 32GB of internal storage. The 4K capable 13MP rear camera is accompanied by a 4MP camera in the front.

“The Mobile Development Platform Smartphone (MDP/S) is an early development platform for developers. This next-generation smartphone provides application developers and device manufacturers with early access to a high-performance platform for development, testing and optimization of Android applications. This development device is based on Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 810 Ultra HD processor, which includes a 64-bit octo-core CPU, Qualcomm Adreno™ 430 GPU and the newest Qualcomm Hexagon™ DSP, along with the latest available Android OS.”

In terms of sensors, the MDP packs the usual suspects, along with UV and Mobeam sensors, which should find their way into our smartphones in the not-so-distant future. Other unusual features are the 8 microphones and the ultrasound emitter. As far as security is concerned, users authenticate themselves using the fingerprint reader found on the back of the device.

After the CPU, the second star of the show must be the 6.17” QHD (2560×1600) 490ppi multi-touch capacitative screen, something that I’d love to see… cough, Apple try. Given these extraordinary specs, it should take long until device manufacturers launch one or a few models based on the Qualcomm MDP. In fact, we might see some similarly specced devices as early as February, when the MWC 2015 takes place in Barcelona. Of course, manufacturers will only present prototypes at that point, with launch dates schedule sometime during the summer or fall.

The 3,020 mAh will be easy to fill up, due to the QuickCharge 2.0 technology. That’s yet another thing I’d like to see in more devices, but it’s up to the other manufacturers to pick up this design and make their own based on it.

Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 MDP is available on the Intrinsyc website for $799.

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YouTube Announces ‘YouTube Music Key’ Streaming Service http://walyou.com/youtube-announces-youtube-music-key-streaming-service/ http://walyou.com/youtube-announces-youtube-music-key-streaming-service/#comments Mon, 24 Nov 2014 02:59:31 +0000 http://walyou.com/?p=196329

With so many people using YouTube to listen to music and watch music videos, YouTube has now announced the YouTube Music Key subscription service.

As much as we use YouTube for watching adorable cat videos and funny TV clips, more and more of us are turning to YouTube to listen to music. From getting to see the latest, official music videos as our favourite musicians release them to discovering indie tracks by bands we’ve never heard of, YouTube is a massive library of audio-visual hits.

The problem is, whilst it’s not short on just how many tracks are on the site, actually listening to/viewing them can be a hassle. Ads ahead of videos can spoil the experience and it can be difficult to organise playlists and skip to videos when you’re on the go.

It’s for both of these reasons that YouTube has now announced ‘YouTube Music Key’. A paid music subscription service, YouTube Music Key looks set to solve all of our music listening problems.

According to the company, YouTube Music Key has two parts to it. The first of these is the roll out of the YouTube music hub (there should be a ‘Music’ tab on the YouTube homepage right now) which recommends tracks, music videos and special playlists (both based on individual artists and what you’ve already listened to) for your hearing pleasure.

The second part of YouTube Music Key is where it gets interesting. Currently in beta, the service offers ad-free viewing, the ability to listen to tracks in the background, offline music, endless playlists and you’ll also unlock Google Play Music for free which lets you choose from over 30 million tracks (which you can download) and make custom radio stations that will even update themselves based on your music tastes. And, you can add your existing iTunes library to Google Play for free, putting every bit of music you own into one place.

That massive list of features doesn’t come free though as it will cost $10/£10/10€ per month (depending on your local currency). That figure does seem quite expensive initially but when you consider just how many songs YouTube and Google Play Music have between them (well over 50 million) it definitely seems worth it.

As for how you get access to YouTube Music Key at the moment, the service is currently invite-only and YouTube is only sending them out to their “biggest music fans first.” It’s not entirely clear what defines their ‘biggest music fans’ but those who do get the email will not only get six months of YouTube Music Key for free but they’ll also get the discounted subscription $8/£8/8€. Oh, and that promotional discount will last for the rest of their lives too, so it certainly pays off to be an early adopted.

Visit the YouTube Music Key page (the link is below) for the best chance of getting into the beta.

Source: YouTube Music Key

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Cortana Makes Jokes about Siri’s Size In Microsoft’s Latest Ad http://walyou.com/cortana-vs-siri-microsoft-ad/ http://walyou.com/cortana-vs-siri-microsoft-ad/#comments Sat, 22 Nov 2014 20:55:29 +0000 http://walyou.com/?p=196332

Since all the big players from the tech industry have their own version of a virtual personal assistant, one of them must come out as the best. When comparing itself to Cortana, though, Siri is only bragging about it getting bigger.

Does size matter? It seems to do for Apple, who’s been manufacturing lilliputian iPhones, while everyone else (well, not really, but at least its competitors) was well beyond the 5-inch mark. Keep your decency, people, I’m talking about display diagonals here! That being said, Microsoft (no longer Nokia, as Redmond dropped that brand) Lumia 830′s Cortana takes the spotlight in the tech giant’s latest ad, and confronts iPhone 6′s Siri about the things it can and cannot do. The answer? Everything seems to be about getting bigger, at least in Apple’s case.

During an International Marketing Strategies course I attended earlier this year, the professor pointed out that in the US it’s OK to refer to your competitors in your ads, something that’s not really permitted on this side of the pond. His example included Audi and BMW, who have been making fun of each other in American TV commercials and billboards. The same thing happened in the tech world, too, as Samsung has been pointing and laughing at Apple for a few years now.

To top it all, Microsoft’s latest ad is holiday-themed, as Cortana reminds Siri that getting bigger this time of the year happens even to the best of us. Other than that, the whole ad is a long series of “but can you do that?”, in an attempt to emphasize only some of Siri’s downsides.

Mind you, the exchange portrayed by Microsoft sound realistic, but none of the VPAs is programmed to say that in real life. What Redmond is trying to show is that it doesn’t matter who has been around the longer. It’s functionality people are paying for, and this is exactly what they should get.

Still, when buying a smartphone or tablet, the included VPA is rarely the decisive factor. You should pay more attention to the operating system the device is running, and whether its app ecosystem is good enough for you. It wouldn’t be nice to buy an expensive mobile device just to find out that the app you’re looking for doesn’t have an equivalent on that specific device, now would it?

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Walmart Got Tricked Into Selling PS4s for $90 http://walyou.com/walmart-ps4-scam/ http://walyou.com/walmart-ps4-scam/#comments Thu, 20 Nov 2014 20:45:51 +0000 http://walyou.com/?p=196316

There are no limits to human ingenuity, and in case you needed more proof, then how about learning that Wal-Mart has tricked into selling PS4 for $90 when the video game console wasn’t even on sale.

And no, you’re not going to get it that cheap not even on Black Friday (which for some reason is tomorrow in Romania, instead of November 28). The whole mishap is the result of a terrible price-matching policy. Walmart went overboard and included e-tailers into its price-matching campaign, and when you’re measuring your strength against such companies as Amazon, there are one or two things that can go wrong. Really wrong!

Seeing how the Seattle-based e-tailer is also listed among the companies Walmart is willing to match their prices against, some Amazon members with a registered selling account proceeded to creating PS4 sale listings at an incredible price. The world’s largest retailer was thus determined to offer Sony’s video game console cheaper than that by a cent. The scammers ended up paying less than 25% of the console’s real price.

“This shows that consumers are clever enough to understand how they can take advantage of that,” explained Haydn Simpson, head of brand protection for consulting firm NetNames.

“This is one example of the many unethical and even illegal methods that some consumers use to game the system,” added Joe LaRocca, president and founder of RetaiLPartners.

This happens a week after Sears listed Wii U bundles at $60 due a glitch, which enabled some Walmart customers to price-match it and get it for that much.

To prevent further fraud, Walmart has locked down its price-matching policy. “We can’t tolerate fraud or attempts to trick our cashiers,” declared Wal-Mart, in a statement. “This kind of activity is unfair to the millions of customers who count on us every day for honest value.” In other words, clever buyers will no longer be able to take advantage of Walmart’s benevolence.

“It is generally a hassle because usually either the store clerk or the cashier is not authorized to approve the price match,” explained Edgar Dworsky, founder of advocacy site ConsumerWorld.org. “You have to call over the store manager or a supervisor.”

While such things won’t happen again in the near future in Wal-Mart’s backyard, there’s no guarantee that the retailer has steered clear from danger, as scammers can always find new ways of tricking companies.

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Yahoo Signs 5-Year Deal with Mozilla, Becomes Firefox’s Default SE http://walyou.com/yahoo-mozilla-firefox-default-search-engine/ http://walyou.com/yahoo-mozilla-firefox-default-search-engine/#comments Thu, 20 Nov 2014 19:05:59 +0000 http://walyou.com/?p=196313

Considering that Google has been paying $300M per annum to be the default search engine of Firefox, Yahoo must have put a lot of effort into beating that offer.

The word of the year must be “diversification” for Mozilla, as it ditched its 10-year default search engine in favor of Yahoo, and it started signing deals with local search engines in Russia and China. In other words, if you happen to be in one of those countries, don’t be surprised if Yandex or Baidu are set as default browsers. That doesn’t mean that Google has been abandoned altogether. Instead, it is still featured as a built-in search engine, just that it’s no longer the default one.

“At Yahoo, we believe deeply in search – it’s an area of investment, opportunity and growth for us,” pointed out Yahoo CEO Marrisa Mayer. “I can’t wait to see what innovations we build together.” That must be true, if they convinced Mozilla to drop Google as their default search engine. To put things into perspective, Google had almost 68% of the market share this May, while Yahoo barely has 10%. Not to mention that Yahoo’s search engine is actually powered by Microsoft Bing. The Yahoo-Microsoft deal will expire early next year, and then Yahoo will roll out its own search engine.

“Google has been the Firefox global search default since 2004. Our agreement came up for renewal this year, and we took this as an opportunity to review our competitive strategy and explore our options,” explained Chris Beard, Mozilla’s CEO in a statement today. “We are excited to partner with Yahoo to bring a new, re-imagined Yahoo search experience to Firefox users in the U.S. featuring the best of the Web, and to explore new innovative search and content experiences together.”

There’s a lot of dispute regarding the best Web browser out there, and Chrome may have the largest market share, but it lacks many important functions. Of course, there are plenty of add-ons that compensate for that, but it’s one thing when certain features are offered by default, and a completely different thing when you need to install extensions. If you want to take the Mozilla route, feel free to give Firefox Aurora (or Firefox Developer Edition, as it’s been known lately) a try.

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Got Milk? Samsung Galaxy Owners Respond Affirmatively http://walyou.com/samsung-milk-video/ http://walyou.com/samsung-milk-video/#comments Wed, 19 Nov 2014 19:17:00 +0000 http://walyou.com/?p=196280

Milk, Samsung’s non-potable platform for all-media, will be available in the form of a video player for short clips exclusively on the Galaxy line.

There are two very different opinion currents regarding Milk Video, and neither is correct. Some tend to think that given the short clips, Samsung means to compete against Vine. The Korean giant thinks it can last more than six seconds, so it has no quarrel with Vine. On the other hand, there are some who believe that Milk Video goes against YouTube, but the latter enables people to upload even ten-hour long videos, while the former will resume to clips that are several minutes long. That being said, Samsung’s video player app fits somewhere in the middle, being able to host music videos at most (don’t expect any concerts or prog rock videos, as those are far too long for this).

Milk Video will feature various channels to which people can subscribe. For example, there will be Funny or Die videos, as well as clips made by Vice. By the looks of it, the player will be more about entartainment than news.

The app doesn’t have that many reviews on Play Store, and not all of the current ones were written by happy customers. Among the things that people are complaining about are the login procedure, the slow UI and the fact that the Milk Video channel is followed by default. Seeing how this is an Android app, the fact that people can only login using their Facebook account and not the Google+ one is a major downside.

Bottom line is: if you own a Samsung smartphone from the Galaxy line and want to watch short clips, head over to the Play Store and install it. The app doesn’t seem to be compatible with my S2, however, so I’m going to assume that it only works with the newer models. Oh, and Galaxy tablets are excluded as well, so Samsung must be thinking that watching videos on a smartphone’s display is much better than on a tablet. Way to go, Samsung, way to go!

Also, it doesn’t matter how much PR Samsung’s video player app is going to get, the following clip will still pop up on the first page of Google search results when you’re looking for “Milk Video.” Enjoy it!

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Netflix expands to Australia and New Zealand in March 2015 http://walyou.com/netflix-australia-new-zealand-march-2015/ http://walyou.com/netflix-australia-new-zealand-march-2015/#comments Wed, 19 Nov 2014 12:00:18 +0000 http://walyou.com/?p=196275

The media streaming giant Netflix continues its steady expansion, now ready to take on Australia and New Zealand in March next year.

Starting next March the streaming giant Netflix will be available on Australia and New Zealand. Netflix has made a name in many countries already by providing a cheaper than cable alternative that allows user to stream a huge and ever-growing selection of titles of all genres, both movies and TV shows.

Netflix charges a monthly fee, after which users can access content any number of times they desire, both 3rd party TV shows and movies, and in-house creations such as the acclaimed House of Cards and Orange Is the New Black. Since launching in 2007, Netflix has been made available in over 50 countries with more than 53 million active members. Netflix can be accessed on a variety of smart TVs, set-top boxes, computers, and even video game consoles.

While the price has not been mentioned yet, it is safe to expect a direct translation of the American price to Australian dollars, as it usually happens, so it is safe to expect a fee of $7.99 a month.

Via ABC

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Google’s Project Loon for Internet everywhere will begin in Australia http://walyou.com/google-project-loon-australia/ http://walyou.com/google-project-loon-australia/#comments Tue, 18 Nov 2014 12:00:24 +0000 http://walyou.com/?p=196242

Google’s most ambitious idea yet, Project Loon, will begin in December this year with Australia as the first country partaking.

Project Loon is Google’s greatest endeavor yet, as it aims to bring Internet to the entire world via a series of relays located in high-altitude balloons. The Santa Clara company has announced that they are getting ready to conduct a series of test flights in Australia, with more than 20 balloons spread around western Queensland. Google couldn’t do this on their own, so they have partnered with a local wireless carrier, Telstra, who will be in charge of beaming the Internet to the ground below. Note, Telstra are not newbies when it comes to Internet telecommunications, and are already Australia’s largest carrier.

The plan comes from Google’s experimentation and research department, Google X, and has already been running trials in other countries, such as New Zealand and the US. Project Loon sounds fantastic on paper, but Google still has to get around some details, mainly the wind and ever-changing weather conditions which could potentially interfere with the optimal altitude, or worse, crash the balloons as it already happened in New Zealand once.

Via The Verge

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NYC Payphones Will Make Way for Free Gigabit Wi-Fi Charging Stations http://walyou.com/linknyc-free-gigabit-wi-fi-charging-stations-new-york/ http://walyou.com/linknyc-free-gigabit-wi-fi-charging-stations-new-york/#comments Mon, 17 Nov 2014 20:38:40 +0000 http://walyou.com/?p=196237

London already has public charging stations that look like phone booths, so New York couldn’t have settled for less. Big Apple’s charging stations will also provide people with free Gigabit Wi-Fi, which is something more metropolises should adopt.

It’s really painful to be in a capital and not have Wi-Fi everywhere. NYC may not be the capital of the US, but it is the country’s largest city and has more than 50 million visitors each year. In this context, offering free Wi-Fi to the public is more than a simple necessity, it’s a must. The LinkNYC charging stations will not only provide quick access to a free and fast Internet connection, but they will also allow people to charge their devices if they’re on the run and don’t have a charger handy or a power outlet nearby. The Links are quite similar to this two-faced 12-feet tall payphone concept, but has plenty of unique design elements to call it original.

The LinkNYC network will include 10,000 such stations, and will become a reality thanks to CityBridge, a consortium made by Titan, Control Group, Qualcomm, and Comark. Seeing how Titan is one of the two major operators of current old-school pay phones, its involvement in repurposing these ancient pieces of technology is only logical.

“One of the reasons why this Wi-Fi network is expected to work where others haven’t is because we have linked it to a significant source of revenue, which is the advertising component,” explained Scott Goldsmith, Titan’s COO.

Luckily for New Yorkers, the LinkNYC network won’t be paid out of their pockets. The Links will display all sorts of ads that basically pay for the charging station. On top of that, they will generate up to $500 million per year, and that’s definitely not a sum to neglect.

Accessibility is also something the developers of the Links have taken into account. The pay phones may have a futuristic design, but people with various disabilities will still be able to use them.

And as though free Wi-Fi and charging wasn’t enough, the pay phone will enable people to place calls to any of the 50 states at no cost. Now this is an example that other big cities and capitals should follow! For the time being I can only say this: Bravo, NYC!

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