Cyanogen’s next stop is India

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Cyanogen, the company that makes the popular Cyanogenmod Android Firmware and that started making its own version of that for new phones last year, is now back for more. Today it’s announcing a new deal with Indian consumer electronics company Micromax that will put Cyanogen’s software on the company’s newest phones. That goes hand in hand with Micromax (which is the second largest smartphone maker in India) launching a new phone brand in India called YU that will sell devices running Cyanogen OS.

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Apple will let accessory makers use its Lightning port in their products

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Apple will soon allow third-party accessory makers to integrate the company’s Lightning port directly into their products. 9to5Mac today reported on the move, which should make life easier for manufacturers operating on slim margins and cut down on the number of cables that iPhone and iPad users need to carry around. Currently, some devices like Bluetooth speakers and iPhone battery cases often require a microUSB cord for charging. But by giving its partners the option of swapping that USB port for the Lightning hardware iOS users are familiar with, Apple’s making things easier on everyone.

Third-party manufacturers will also soon have access to a smaller Lightning connector, according to 9to5Mac. This will enable them to fit Apple’s…

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Apple Watch app development begins today with release of WatchKit

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Developers are now able to start creating apps for the Apple Watch. Apple is today releasing WatchKit, a developer toolkit that allows third parties to create apps for its upcoming smartwatch. “WatchKit provides the incredible iOS developer community with the tools they need to create exciting new experiences right on your wrist,” Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller says in a statement. Notably, Apple is revealing that the initial round of Watch apps are required to be an extension of an existing iPhone app. It won’t be until sometime later next year that developers will be able to build apps native to the watch.

There are three types of experiences that developers can create for the Apple Watch. There are full Watch apps, which have…

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The new Groups app makes Facebook about your friends again

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Imagine you have an online service for chatting with friends, with somewhere in the neighborhood of 650 to 700 million monthly active users. Those users put up something like 2.5 billion pieces of discrete content every month: posts, photos, comments, and likes. That would be a pretty huge service, second only to Facebook itself in its sheer size and scope. You’d think the app for that service would be wildly popular. But you’d be wrong — because until now, that app didn’t exist.

The service,…

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WhatsApp rolls out end-to-end encryption using TextSecure code

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The most recent update to WhatsApp’s Android app includes a surprising feature: strong end-to-end encryption, enabled by default. It’s the strongest security any major texting app has offered, even compared with similar tools from giants like Google, Microsoft, and Apple. WhatsApp partnered with Open Whisper Systems for the launch, using open source code to build in the new features. It’s unclear when the features will come to iOS, but just reaching WhatsApp’s Android users represents a huge step forward for everyday encryption use.

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Small Empires: can Wattpad’s DIY writing empire survive an invasion by Amazon?

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When venture capitalists are considering whether or not to invest in a startup, there’s a stock question many will ask the founder: What would you do if Google decided to enter your business? You could swap the name of any tech titan — Apple, Facebook, Microsoft, Amazon — into that query. The bigger picture is figuring out whether the thing you’re building is a unique and defensible business or just a cool feature these companies haven’t bothered to focus on yet.

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How to live for a month in virtual reality

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Next year, artist Mark Farid wants to give up a month of his life to virtual reality. If a crowdfunding campaign succeeds, he’ll spend 28 days in a gallery, wearing a VR headset and a pair of noise-canceling headphones. For the duration of the show, all he’ll experience will be video and audio captured by a complete stranger, going about their daily life. When they eat, he’ll eat. When they sleep, he’ll sleep. As much as modern technology permits, he will let his individual identity…

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HP’s Surface Pro 3 replica debuts today

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HP is launching its own version of the Surface Pro 3 today. No, it hasn’t taken over manufacturing of Microsoft’s tablet, it’s merely imitating it. HP’s new Envy x2 has a multi-angle kickstand, a fabric keyboard cover that clicks into place with a stylus holder loop, and it all adds up to something that looks eerily similar to Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3 tablet. There’s a 13.3-inch model and a 15-inch version, and both ship with Intel’s latest Core M processors in a variety of configurations. Although the 13-inch model has a base display that’s 1366 x 768 resolution, it can be upgraded to match the 1920 x 1080 resolution of the base 15-inch model.

While the similarities are clear, HP’s tablet hybrid is significantly heavier and thicker…

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This is the new Nokia

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“Don’t write Nokia off just yet” was the message coming out of Helsinki this morning as the Nokia N1 tablet was being unveiled. In spite of selling its device business to Microsoft earlier this year and swearing off putting its name on smartphones until 2016, Nokia wishes to be seen as the same driver of mobile innovation that it’s always been. Finland’s most beloved company will continue “bringing the magic of technology” to the masses, and the N1 is just “the first of many” new devices…

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Forty Years Young: Hello Kitty and the Power of Cute

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Kitty White is five apples tall, and she weighs as much as three. She lives in London with her twin sister, Mimmy, and their parents, George and Mary. The third grader plays piano, bakes cookies, and is never seen without her signature red bow that she wears on her left ear.

She is, of course, better known as Hello Kitty, and she is everywhere. With more than $8 billion dollars in global annual sales, she’s the not-quite-cat who has taken over the world, proving that cuteness can conquer all.

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WhatsApp rolls out end-to-end encryption using TextSecure code

See the original posting on The Verge

The most recent update to WhatsApp’s Android app includes a surprising feature: strong end-to-end encryption, enabled by default. It’s the strongest security any major texting app has offered, even compared with similar tools from giants like Google, Microsoft, and Apple. WhatsApp partnered with Open Whisper Systems for the launch, using open source code to build in the new features. It’s unclear when the features will come to iOS, but just reaching WhatsApp’s Android users represents a huge step forward for everyday encryption use.

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AMC offers unlimited viewings of ‘Interstellar’ for $19.99 or more

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Have you seen Interstellar? Do you want to see Christopher Nolan’s three-hour space epic again before it leaves the theater? And then again a third time? And if nine hours of Matthew McConaughey and reported sound problems isn’t enough, do you want to see it four, five, six more times? Then you’ll want to head to one of AMC’s 330 movie theaters across the US that are offering special tickets that allow unlimited Interstellar viewings.

You’ll need to be a member of the $12-a-year AMC Stubs program in order to get the tickets, which vary in price between $19.99 and $34.99, with a lower price of $14.99 available for people who’ve already paid for one ticket. AMC’s Imax theaters are also included in the joint promotion with Paramount…

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Nokia’s first device after Microsoft is an iPad mini clone that runs Android

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Nokia is back in the devices business just under seven months after selling its devices and services unit to Microsoft for $7.2 billion. Nokia is unveiling its N1 Android tablet today, days after revealing its plans to license its brand name and teasing a black box on Twitter. Just like Xiaomi’s attempts to emulate Apple’s iPad mini design, Nokia’s N1 has the same 7.9-inch screen size and even the same 2048 x 1536 resolution. Nokia has even opted for a single piece of anodized aluminum…

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Intel merging mobile and PC groups as line between phone and computer blurs

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Chip-making giant Intel is set to merge its mobile and tablet division together with the part of the company that makes processors for personal computers. The company’s chief executive, Brian Krzanich, announced the plan — which will combine the loss-making mobile group with the profitable PC chip-making group early next year — in an email to employees. Intel spokesperson Chuck Mulloy said the move comes as the “lines are blurring between PCs, tablets, phablets and phones,” and explained that the company’s aim is to “accelerate the implementation and create some efficiency so that we can move even faster.”

The company said in April this year that its mobile division had a “roadmap to profitability,” but apparently decided to try a…

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HBO’s sci-fi western ‘Westworld’ is coming next year with an insanely good cast

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Looks like HBO was really happy with J. J. Abrams and Jonathan Nolan’s Westworld pilot, an adaptation of Michael Crichton’s 1973 novel of the same name. News of the pilot first came out over a year ago; today, accompanied by some bizarre tweets (and the Vine, above), HBO has confirmed that Westworld will be given a full season order and will debut next year.

The premiere episode was directed by Jonathan Nolan (Interstellar co-writer and, yes, Christopher’s brother) and co-written by both Nolan and Lisa Joy. The series will star Anthony Hopkins as an inventor who runs a futuristic theme park full of lifelike androids. According to THR, James Marsden, Evan Rachel Wood, and Thandie Newton will portray the androids and can be…

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China has arrested three suspects for spreading Wirelurker iOS malware

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Less than two weeks after the bug was first discovered, the Wirelurker iOS malware has already led to three arrests. First discovered by ZDNet, the Beijing Bureau of Public security has announced the arrest of three suspects charged with spreading the Wirelurker malware through a third-party app store. Police say the program that spread the malware has also been shut down.

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Listen to over 100 songs from the new ‘Grand Theft Auto V’

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While Grand Theft Auto V is arguably the best game of the GTA series, perhaps the best part of the game (as is the case with the entire franchise) is its soundtrack. For this week’s Xbox One / PlayStation 4 re-releaseRockstar has updated the music with “over 100 additional new songs” — and thanks to the Reddit gods, we’ve got a near-complete playlist.

The Reddit community has confirmed 157 of the reported 162 new songs (in addition to the returning tracks from last year’s version). The confirmed tracks were “heard or seen on GTA V live streams” and are guaranteed to make your cruise around Los Santos fit any situation you’re in. It includes a vast array of songs from recent hits by Lorde (“Tennis Court”) and Maroon 5 (“Moves Like…

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Intel wants to sell this $495 smart cuff to women

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At a press event today, Intel fully unveiled the luxury wearable device for fashion-forward women that it’s been teasing since January called “My Intelligent Communication Accessory,” or MICA. It’s a result of a collaboration with fashion brand Opening Ceremony, and the two companies believe that the device can solve the problems they discovered in their research women had, like fumbling for phones during meetings or needing extra space to store one when planning a night out.

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Snapchat now lets you send money to friends

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There’s something new that you’ll soon be able to send over Snapchat: money. Snapchat is today launching a service called Snapcash, which lets you quickly send money to a friend and have it deposited into their bank account. Once you’ve entered your debit card into Snapchat, you’ll be able to start sending a friend money through the normal messaging screen, just by entering in the amount you want to send and beginning it with a dollar sign. For now, the service is only available in the US for users age 18 and over. It’s likely that an app update will be required to start using Snapcash, but no update is available yet on either iOS or Android.

Snapchat created Snapcash in partnership with Square, which will handle storing card numbers…

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