The on-again-off-again status of NYC's e-hail pilot program is now, well, back on. A New York state court has just lifted a temporary restraining order brought on by the city's livery cab companies that halted the year-long trial of taxi-hailing apps like Uber, Hailo and TaxiMagic. They argued that using the apps to book cabs counts as pre-arranging a service, which is strictly their territory. After weeks of deliberation, judges sided with the city, which contended the software is just another way to hail a cab.
Source: The Epoch Times
Even though we have the likes of Sparrow and Mailbox already competing to be the one to handle email duties on your iOS device, chances are a couple more options wouldn't be frowned upon. Here's where the rebranded Boxer and newcomer Dispatch come in. The former, which was previously known as Taskbox, is an app that thrives largely on a swipe-based UI, while the latter describes itself as an "action-based" client that gives you quick access to a vast set of commands (delete, favorite, ignore, etc.). Where Dispatch hopes to stand out from the pack, however, is by making email accounts friendly with things like Evernote, Reminders, Calendar and others, which will then allow you to easily add items such as tasks, notes and scheduled events to those apps.
Boxer, on the other hand, touts a built-in to-do list feature and integration with Dropbox, as well as support for a slew of providers -- including Gmail, Yahoo, AOL, Exchange and, with the latest update, Outlook. The Dispatch and Boxer applications are $2.99 (for a limited time) and $4.99, respectively, though Boxer is making its own app a gratis download for the first 10,000 folks who manage to grab it. Interested in either one? Well then, it's a good thing we have both links to the App Store down below -- take your pick.
05/06/2013 - BlackBerry introduces OTA service for automakers, brings push expertise to vehicle telematics
With more and more vehicles featuring telematics and built-in wireless connectivity, it's no surprise that we're seeing a new ecosystem emerge around the technology, with M2M specialists providing everything from radios to apps. BlackBerry wants a piece of this pie, and today at the Telematics Detroit conference, the company is showing a new OTA (Over The Air) service for automakers. The solution lets car manufacturers manage and deploy software updates to vehicles in the field and takes advantage of BlackBerry's push expertise and secure infrastructure. Other remote capabilities include installing apps on a car's infotainment system and getting status information on vehicle components. Let's just hope there's no service outage in the middle of that ECU update, OK? PR after the break.
We managed to grab a quick chat with Nokia's Global Head of Smartphone Marketing, Vesa Jutila, following the global launch of the Lumia 925. When asked about the still-notable absence of some mainstream apps within Windows Phone 8, Jutila was surprisingly frank. With reference to the company's Lumia series, he said that "the biggest complaint is that customers are missing the apps they want."
Nokia has been on a recent charm offensive towards Instagram, not least with a mini Twitter campaign, but it announced earlier today that a new Hipstamatic Oggl app will be headed to Microsoft's mobile OS, capable of sharing through Twitter, Facebook and, yes, Instagram. However, for users coming from other platforms, they may find some first-party favorites missing -- with things like Google+ and Amazon Cloud Player being just a couple of examples. Jutila acknowledged that there were "some gaps" but said Nokia is "addressing this very strongly" with the help of Microsoft. He added:
"[Developer attention] is very much driven by the absolute volume of Windows Phones in the market. That's why we're so pleased when other manufacturers also make Windows Phones."
When asked if Nokia has a strategy for a scenario in which it becomes the only manufacturer of Windows Phones, Jutila replied "No, we don't have a strategy for that."
Sharif Sakr contributed to this report.
Attention HTML5 virtuosos: Mozilla is thirsty for your talents. So much, in fact, that the outfit is baiting developers with a free smartphone in the hopes they'll return the favor with fresh Firefox OS apps. In order to qualify for a device, you'll need to submit a proposal to Mozilla outlining the app you wish to build or port to its new mobile platform. If your pitch is accepted, the company will hook you up with a free Geeksphone Keon to thank you for your labor. Sure, the device's 3.5-inch HVGA display, 1GHz Snapdragon S1 processor, 512MB of RAM and 3-megapixel rear-facing camera are entry-level at best, but remember you're getting this handset gratis. The program is set to close at the end of the month or when supplies run out, whichever comes first. So, if you're interested in adding "Firefox OS developer" to your resume, hit up the source link to apply.
04/05/2013 - T-Mobile's official TV app now available for iOS
Holy Magenta! T-Mobile TV is now available for iOS. Just a few weeks removed from the carrier's launch of the iPhone 5, its entertainment streaming app offers a free 30-day trial run with content from Fox News, the Associated Press, Campus Insiders and ACC Digital Network. Those looking to extend their mobile media fix can opt for a $13 a month Prime Pack that opens up programming from the likes of ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC, MTV, Spike TV, Comedy Central and VH1. In addition to its flagship package, the carrier offers a set of themed packs that range from $6 to $10 a month. To take the self-proclaimed UnCarrier's mobile boob tube for a test drive, head on over to the source link below -- just be sure that your device is running iOS 4.3 or higher.
Still completely absent from Android, the Google-made iOS only YouTube Capture video sharing app has received a minor update. Version 1.3 introduces a smorgasbord of colorless enhancements like a faster startup, an upload timer and HD previews of image enhancements. The real showstopper here is the addition of a WiFi only sharing option, which may prove useful for people trying to curtail their wireless data usage. To pull down this 28.3MB software bump, head on over to the source link below.
Don't let the name fool ya -- "WhereverTV" wasn't on any iOS devices until this morning when the Neuros-powered streaming global television service got an App Store launch. It's intended for a wide variety of iOS devices -- the iPhone 3GS through the 5, as well as iPod Touches and iPads running iOS 4.3 or newer -- and offers access to WhereverTV free international TV streaming options, as well as paid options for Greek, Moroccan, and Arabic programming (the app's been available on Android devices for some time now).
Users aren't limited by connection, either, as even 3G signal is supported by the app; of course, we wouldn't suggest you go depending on that option, but it will function should you try. WhereverTV is also promising updates in the future, such as DVR scheduling and playback, as well as more free channels. That is, in addition to the company's ongoing quest to make good on its name.
After months of being wrapped in black bars, Netflix has updated its Windows Phone 8 app with fullscreen support for devices wielding native 720p displays. While this update doesn't add HD video playback, it definitely improves the app's image quality for phones with hi-res screens. So, if you're sporting a top-shelf WP8 device and you're looking to take full advantage of your display's real estate, head on over to our source link to pull down this 2MB refresh.
Source: Windows Phone Store
After several months as a watered down messaging app, Viber for Windows Phone 8 is finally catching up to its Android and iOS counterparts. Starting today, the redesigned VoIP application now supports free calls with HD audio, lock screen notifications and the ability to pin conversations to your Start screen. This
Metro modern UI version of Viber also includes photo sharing and group conversations with up to 40 participants. So, if your call plan is running low on minutes and the latest version of Skype just isn't cutting the mustard, head on over to the source link to give this free VoIP software a whirl.
Via: Windows Phone Blog
Source: Windows Phone Store
29/03/2013 - MLB polishes At Bat 13 on iOS and Android ahead of Opening Day, brings app to BlackBerry Z10
With the 2013 season looming just around the corner, it's only natural for Major League Baseball to make sure its various applications on different platforms are all ready to go come this weekend. And as it did with MLB.tv on Xbox Live a couple days ago, MLB's now also updated the At Bat Android and iOS apps, leaving behind the spring training features from last month and making room for ones that are tailored for this year's Opening Day and forward. For subscribers, this means things such as multi-platform live audio, more video highlights, a virtual archive of classic games and a revamped news section within the apps. What's more, MLB has kept its promise of bringing At Bat 13 to the BB10 crowd, giving BlackBerry Z10 owners the ability to download the app starting today. Clearly, it's that time of the year again, that time where your Yankees-cheering friends tell you all about how A-Rod, when fit, is the best player in the game. Or, if they're Giants fans, how they really, really, hope the tale of Samson's hair won't apply to Tim Lincecum.
The clatter of ergonomic keyboards is already bearing fruit, just two months after the Ubuntu developer community was let loose on the SDK for the newly touch-enabled OS. Canonical's Michael Hall has posted an update on his personal blog detailing progress with some core apps, such as Calendar and Weather, as as well the broader effort to give mobile Ubuntu a sense of personality. The source link below shows off some nice-looking puzzle games, news readers and even an app built around the disembodied head of a strapping lad called Jono, who in many ways symbolizes the minimal-but-cheerful look of the emerging ecosystem. A bit of debugging here, a swoosh of the razor there, and it could be perfect.
Source: Michael Hall's blog
Box has done a pretty decent job at bringing novel features to its apps on the various platforms they are present in, and today it's turn for a couple of Microsoft's properties to get some fresh tidbits from the cloud storage service. For starters, both of Box's Windows Phone and Windows 8 applications will now have the ability to see easily preview files (Box says more than 75 types) -- a feature that's been available on Android since late last year, and one that'll surely come in handy to Redmond's user base. Additionally, Box also announced a few platform-specific goodies, with the Windows 8 app seeing the addition of a new navigation bar for quick access to docs, while the Windows Phone equivalent nabbed a revamped wide cycle tile which allows for updates to be viewed via its own Live Tile (so long as it's the largest size). These changes are live now, so check' em out and give 'em a whirl the next time you open your
Via: The Next Web
24/02/2013 - Mozilla details apps for Firefox OS: Facebook, Cut the Rope, Nokia Here and Twitter confirmed
We've only just stepped into Mozilla's press arena but the Firefox creators handed a rich press kit as we did, detailing a fair chunk of what we're expecting to see over the next hour. One of the more noticeable announcements focused on Firefox Marketplace, detailing HTML5 apps you might have heard of before. Along the predictable likes of Facebook and Twitter, games like Cut The Rope will also make an appearance on the new mobile OS, as well as Where's My Water, Disney Mobile and EA game titles. There will be support for cloud file storage through Box too, as well as a mapping app from Nokia Here. Yes, the Finnish phone maker will be bringing its location clout to Firefox OS. SoundCloud, Pulse News, Time Out and Airbnb have also signed up for the new operating system.
The mobile OS that needs more big name apps to tether their wagons to insure a boost in user adoption is less one key photography app. According to AllThingsD, there is no native Instagram app in development for BB10 handsets -- at least for the foreseeable future. Quoting sources close to the popular social / photo filtering app, the report goes on to say that future development is also uncertain. Of course, the outfit is working on an Android port that will be usable on BlackBerry's latest, but with significant compromises to user experience to come as the cost of admission. The new operating system did secure native support from Facebook, Foursquare, LinkedIn and Twitter at launch.
22/02/2013 - HTC releases IR API, looking for a few good devs
In an effort to usher its newest flagship's infrared capabilities to the masses, HTC is adding an IR API to its OpenSense SDK. Starting today, developers interested in creating applications that use the One's IR blaster can request the software kit directly from the company. By making this API available to the masses, HTC hopes to build a stable of apps unique to its new hardware, kicking things off with Sense 5's integrated universal TV remote control software. Devs looking to ease the pain of Logitech's plans to kill off the Harmony -- or those interested in more details -- can find just that via the source link below.
Earlier today, Dropbox rolled out version 2.1 of its iOS app with a trio of enhancements in tow. The update, which requires iOS 5.0 or higher introduces a built-in PDF viewer, file sorting by date modified, and push notifications for when someone shares a folder with you (which were also recently added to the Android client). Whether you're a Dropbox power user or the casual type, this new software bump should definitely come in handy. If you're a stickler for keeping your apps current and you've got 13.8MB to spare, the update's waiting for you at the source link below.
Via: Phone Scoop
11/02/2013 - Verizon names data and battery hogs
BlackBerry-toting penny-pinchers have cause to rejoice, as RIM is introducing lower price tiers in BlackBerry World, starting with the British Pound and Euro. New price tags have yet to take hold across the board, but the the UK will see their lowest level fall from £1.00 to £0.75. When it comes to the Euro, prices will vary by country, and we spotted apps as low as €0.75 on Spain's version of the shop. According to RIM, the tweak takes currency exchange rates and VAT requirements into account, and is an effort to gain a competitive edge and catch the eyes of consumers. If you're hankering to save coin in other countries, more currencies are set to follow suit shortly after this round of changes take effect. RIM says the price adjustment is automatic, but developers who yearn to change their asking prices can sort things out at BlackBerry World's vendor portal.
Source: BlackBerry Developer Blog
While RIM throws checks at developers, and Steve Ballmer invades other people's press conferences to shout about apps, the folks behind the Ubuntu smartphone project are taking a very different tack. According to Richard Collins, product manager at Canonical, the first device -- expected by early next year -- will target basic users and only run pre-installed software:
"In terms of our first go-to-market product strategy, the intention is not to have an application store full of ready-made applications that are there to download. We have a very definite approach in terms of addressing a very important part of the market where users are primarily interested in being able to use a core set of applications."
Let's be clear, though: this entry-level phone will be capable of accessing a storefront for third-party apps at some point in the future. A huge part of Canonical's long-term plan is to capitalize on its relationships with developers and the fact that existing Ubuntu desktop apps should be relatively easy to port to the new breed of phones and tablets. It's just that this isn't going to be the priority to begin with. Check out our full interview with Richard Collins for more.
Canonical's Ubuntu handsets are expected to be upon us very, very soon, and given that some say a phone is only as good as its apps, the firm wants to make sure the experience is indeed a great one right out of the box. To help accomplish that, Canonical has announced the CoreApps project, setting its sights on about a dozen default applications which should give Ubuntu devices ample functionality from day one; this, of course, includes essential ones such as a calendar, calculator, clock / alarm, weather and email client. That's not it, however, since the project also lists plans for social networking apps like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, as well as an account and file manager, document viewer, RSS reader and even a terminal -- the latter, naturally, should make Android rooters feel right at home. Canonical is seeking help from the community to make the CoreApps project a reality, so those devs interested in helping may want to click the source link below to learn all the nitty-gritty.
Source: Ubuntu (Wiki)
After unveiling its new BlackBerry World app hub (music and video still incoming), its dev blog has now announced that RIM will be extending its Built for BlackBerry scheme. Intended to draw in even more native apps for its new mobile platform, the final cut-off date has now been moved from January 21st to February 18th. Talking to German paper, Die Welt, CEO Thorsten Heins recently backed up claims that BlackBerry's new OS would launch with 70,000 apps, although we all know that quality trumps quantity -- something that RIM aims to address. If devs submit an app that makes over $1,000 but less than $10,000, the Waterloo phonemaker will fork out the difference -- app authors can also submit their programs for approval without charge. If you're hungry for some app-based paychecks, check on the detailed criteria at our second source link.
21/01/2013 - Blackberry App World store makes early switch to Blackberry World, but no music or video yet
We're still a few days away from BB10's genuine debut, but RIM's decided to press on early with its app store changes. Starting with the webstore front (which is rolling out in the next 24 hours, depending on your territory) then moving on to the PlayBook and existing BlackBerry phones, the renamed BlackBerry World store will also offer up access to videos and music -- RIM reckons it'll be your "one-stop shop" for mobile entertainment, but those channels aren't live just yet. Test out the store's new offerings at the source link to the right.
The mood over at Microsoft is either joyous or glum, depending on who you ask. Apparently the Windows Phone Store has received a 40 percent increase in app submissions ever since the launch of Windows Phone 8, which fits into the company's claims of increased downloads and climbing app numbers. Yet, this also means that the entire Phone Store staff will be on the job this holiday season certifying apps and making sure the formerly-named Marketplace is abuzz with new software for those hopping over to Microsoft's mobile bandwagon.
They still won't have testing on December 24th, 25th and New Year's day, so developers will need to get their app in before December 17th and 21st respectively to allow for the usual five-day approval process. It's quite a reversal from a prior statement from Microsoft that warned devs the Store would be taking the entire last week of 2012 off. Hey, look at the upside: now they'll have cash to pay for eggnog to soothe away those holiday working woes.
Via: The Next Web
Source: Windows Phone Developer Blog