Archive for the 'Android' Category

Apple Pay competitor ‘Android Pay’ is reportedly coming to China

Wednesday 26 November 2014 @ 7:00 pm

It looks like Apple Pay will soon face some competition in the mobile payments space from its biggest competitor, Android.

According to a new report from China Business News, a new mobile payments service called Android Pay is coming, and will likely launch in the third quarter of 2015.

Android Pay is reportedly being developed by China UnionPay, which is the biggest credit and debit card provider in China. For context, UnionPay is the second biggest payment network in the world next to Visa, based on the value of processed transactions.

Because of China UnionPay’s expansive list of partners, Android Pay could feasibly debut with the support of more partners than Apple Pay, which it also plans to support next year.

According to Want China Times, UnionPay has already approached smartphone makers including Lenovo and Coolpad. UnionPay is likely to offer subsidies to smartphone makers to ensure popular smartphones will include the technology required for Android Pay to work.

Android Pay will be similar to Apple Pay and will utilize Near Field Communication (NFC) payments with Android smartphones, which will allow for wireless payments.

Apple recently announced the ability for Chinese Apple users to make payments using UnionPay’s credit cards in its App Store, a collaboration that suggests Apple could work with UnionPay to bring Apple Pay to China.

There’s no reason why UnionPay couldn’t introduce Android Pay while also supporting Apple Pay in the future, but for now it appears that Chinese smartphone users won’t have to wait too long to be able to purchase things at the store with a swipe of their phone.

This story originally appeared on Business Insider.

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Google’s Nexus 6 Might Be Too Big For Right Now, But Right-Sized For The Future

Saturday 22 November 2014 @ 3:26 pm
Nexus 6-3 As Greg Kumparak noted in the TechCrunch review of the Nexus 6, the phone is very large. Too large, in fact, for most humans. Back when it was just a rumor that Google would be picking Motorola to provide the Nexus 6 hardware, and that it would indeed be a monster with a 6-inch display, I lamented the phabletization of the Nexus line before it was even a real thing. Now, I’ve had some… Read More

Office Mobile for Android updated with Dropbox integration and OneDrive sharing

Thursday 20 November 2014 @ 7:10 am

Microsoft today updated its Office Mobile app for Android phones with Dropbox support and OneDrive sharing. You can download the new version now directly from Google Play.

The update today follows a surprise partnership between Microsoft and Dropbox announced on November 4. At the time, the companies said Dropbox integration would arrive in Office apps first on iOS, and then later on Android smartphones, and today they have delivered.


More to follow

TC Droidcast Episode 27: Nexus 6 Is Too Big And Nokia N1 Is Too iPad

Wednesday 19 November 2014 @ 4:17 pm
droidcast-27 This week on the Droidcast, it’s Darrell Etherington, Greg Kumparak, and Engadget’s Chris Velazco, and we’re talking in more detail about the Nexus 6 now that the full reviews are out. Bottom line: It’s big. We also tackle Nokia’s return to hardware with an Android-powered tablet, and Google’s acquisition of an iOS prototyping company. Next week,… Read More

HackerRank Expands Its Technical Recruiting Platform To Mobile With DroidRank

Wednesday 19 November 2014 @ 12:04 pm
step-1-614db7d62204978234b72bbdaf3246d1 HackerRank, a technical recruiting platform and former TechCrunch Disrupt Battlefield finalist, today announced it is expanding into mobile with the launch of DroidRank. Recruiters could already test for Java skills on the service (in addition to 15 other languages). While that’s the basis for programming Android apps, being able to write Java apps doesn’t necessarily mean you are… Read More

Thanks to Apple, WebGL goes truly cross platform

Tuesday 18 November 2014 @ 7:30 am
Thanks to Apple, WebGL goes truly cross platform
Image Credit: Goo Technologies

At this year’s Apple Developer Conference, most of the headlines focused on iOS 8 and the latest Mac operating system, Yosemite.

iOS 8 added a few new features, like QuickType and the much-awaited health-tracking app, HealthKit. But a bigger story got lost amid the noise of WWDC: Apple’s full support of WebGL for its desktop and mobile browsers.

What is WebGL? It’s a Javascript application-programming interface (API) that renders hardware-accelerated 3D and 2D interactive graphics without the use of any plugins or downloads. What does that really mean? Users now have access to professional-quality, in-browser graphics for games, ads, and other interactive experiences, on any device, including the latest iPhone and iPad.

Apple’s lack of support for Flash for iPhone and iPads is common knowledge in the gaming community. Its decision to not support WebGL, however, is less well-known.

Conventional wisdom had it that Apple would never turn on WebGL on its portable devices because it would threaten its App Store ecosystem. This was due to the high performance of WebGL apps and how the Web was outside the reach of App Store billing.

Software and services are a small percentage of Apple revenues, which hardware sales dominate, and arguably it was more important for it to have a truly leading edge browser. The simple fact is that people heavily use web browsers on portable devices, and it would be an obvious flaw if Safari couldn’t display cutting-edge websites or advertisements.

Meanwhile, Apple engineers in the standards bodies were consistently explaining that the delay was due to issues around security, reliability and power consumption, all of which they were attending to. They went on to add that they were supportive of the efforts by the standards bodies to promote HTML5 and WebGL.

They spoke true. The support is there, the standards are consistently applied, and developers can now build web apps and games that truly play across platforms. Apple’s decision to turn on WebGL in iOS 8 and Safari completes the picture.

Previous claims of cross-platform support for this HTML5 standard were largely worthless because they did not include the iPhone, iPad, or desktop Safari. That has changed, and this standard for 3D and interactive web experiences now works across all of the platforms that matter. This means that developers can write games, advertising campaigns, and rich media websites for any browser and they will literally work everywhere.

What this does show is deep confidence from Apple in their App Store ecosystem. This is all the more impressive given messages by the company that in the future, it sees the software and services part of its business becoming stronger than the hardware side.

Assuming that Apple is right, this is still a great opportunity for game developers. WebGL provides direct hardware access to the GPU and high performance, close to that of a native app. With its advantages of easy accessibility, discoverability, and linking, and the clear cost and reach advantages of going cross platform, game development using HTML5 and WebGL looks attractive.

The first market to feel the impact will be advertising. Curiously, Apple’s own iAD service was WebGL-enabled already, a clear signal that they understood the power of Rich 3D advertisements.

Beyond advertising, the Rich 3D browser experience will be everything we currently see on the Web, from more interactive and engaging websites through to games which will work cross platform without the need for a big porting effort and all of the advantages of a real-time cloud platform.

Paul Flanagan works in business development at Goo Technologies. Paul’s background in mobile games includes work with Creative Mobile and Tequila Mobile, with VC experience in the City of London.

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Goo Technologies is a pioneering web technology company based in Stockholm, Sweden. Our Vision is a world where all digital experiences are available instantly on all devices, everywhere. In the internet world we envision, advanced gam... read more »

Judge Puts Pressure On Apple By Consolidating Lawsuits Over Undelivered Texts

Friday 14 November 2014 @ 12:24 pm
gavel1 Yesterday, Judge Koh made a ruling that affects two separate lawsuits filed against Apple involving the company’s alleged failure to deliver text messages to the intended recipient after users switched from iPhones with iMessage to Android. The first case was filed in May by plaintiffs Adam Backhaut, Joy Backhaut, and Kenneth Morris, arguing that Apple was violating the Stored… Read More

Accel’s Wong may pick Android over Apple in health platforms

Friday 14 November 2014 @ 7:20 am
Accel’s Wong may pick Android over Apple in health platforms

Above: VentureBeat's Jordan Novet interviews Accel's Rich Wong at the Mobile First conference Thursday.

SAN FRANCISCO — Veteran mobile investor Rich Wong said that mobile health technology and apps are going to be a considerable investment opportunity, and suggested he’s inclined to place his bets on the Android side of the space.

“I think it’s hard to ignore the market share numbers,” Wong said at the Mobile First conference Thursday. “It’s nine to two or eight to two in favor of Android.”

“Apple is strong in Silicon Valley where the investment comes from, but we are investing all over the world,” Wong said, referring to his investment firm, Accel. Accel brought Wong aboard in 2007.

Wong points out that one of the big themes in Obamacare is to begin compensating health care providers based on how well they keep whole populations of people healthy.

For example, some medical groups are already participating in “accountable care organization” (ACO) programs wherein Medicare pays them a set amount upfront to keep a given population of Medicare patients healthy.

Wong says health care providers can use mobile health devices and apps to stay engaged with patients and prevent them from getting sick.

“Obviously there’s not a better device to do things like monitor medications,” Wong said. “A lot of people are trying to discover how mobile devices can be used to monitor chronic care conditions,” he added.

When patients fail to take their medications or follow doctor’s orders, they often show up at the emergency room or get readmitted to the hospital, which the ACO must then pay for out of the upfront payment they received from Medicare.

So mobile health tech could simply eliminate the need for those expensive visits. “That obviously changes the cost curve in health care,” Wong said.

It follows that if you’re trying to care for a large population of people, you’d want to develop for the mobile platform that the largest number of people are using, Wong suggested. That’s Android.

The consumer health data and integration platforms of big tech companies like Apple, Google, and Samsung may eventually allow physicians and other care givers to access health data from consumer wearable devices and apps.

Wong is one of the most experienced and successful investors in mobile technology today. As he points out, he was investing in mobile when color screens on phones were cutting edge.

But he says there’s still plenty of investment opportunity in mobile. “It’s the ‘end of the beginning’ cliche, it’s still so early,” Wong said. “There’s still a decade of growth in mobile.”

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Founded in 1983, Accel Partners has a long history of partnering with outstanding entrepreneurs and management teams to build world-class businesses. Accel today invests globally using dedicated teams and market-specific strategies for... read more »

Google's innovative search technologies connect millions of people around the world with information every day. Founded in 1998 by Stanford Ph.D. students Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google today is a top web property in all major glob... read more »

New devices help iOS steal back enterprise share from Android; breakdown is 85% iPhone 6, 15% iPhone 6 Plus

Monday 10 November 2014 @ 12:00 am
New devices help iOS steal back enterprise share from Android; breakdown is 85% iPhone 6, 15% iPhone 6 Plus
Image Credit: Syda Productions/Shutterstock

Apple has managed to reverse a recent trend of declining quarterly enterprise share for device activations, thanks to its new smartphones. The breakdown for businesses buying new iPhones is in line with what we’ve seen before: 85 percent of activations were for the iPhone 6 while the iPhone 6 Plus activations accounted for just 15 percent.

The latest findings come from Good Technology‘s semi-annual Mobility Index Report. While this is still early data (the new iPhones haven’t even been on sale for a full quarter), it’s worth noting that the enterprise numbers match up with others from the industry: App analytics data has previously suggested the iPhone 6 is outselling the iPhone 6 Plus by a 6-to-1 margin.

iOS made up 69 percent of enterprise device activations in Q3 2014, up 2 points from 67 percent in Q2 2014. Android activation share dropped the same amount to 29 percent.


Good Technology says “The release of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus accounted for all of this gain.” More specifically, iOS was down to 66 percent of activations in July and August, but comprised 73 percent of September activations thanks to sales of the new devices.

Windows Phone activations remain consistent with the six previous quarters: flat at 1 percent. It’s worth noting that since BlackBerry devices use BlackBerry Enterprise Server for corporate email access, Good Technology does not have insight into BlackBerry handset activations.

On the tablet side, iPads maintained the vast majority of tablet activations. For the second straight quarter though, Android slightly increased its share of total activations, now accounting for 11 percent:


Yet overall, the trends in the enterprise remain unchanged. Businesses prefer iOS, sometimes choose Android, and essentially ignore Windows Phone. Google will likely be pushing hard with Android 5.0 Lollipop while Microsoft’s Windows 10 strategy won’t arrive till late next year.

The report highlighted three other interesting findings:

  • Custom app activations more than doubled (107 percent) quarter-over-quarter and grew by 731 percent year-over-year to become the most widely activated app category.
  • Behind custom apps, secure instant messaging and secure browsing dominated the smartphone. They ranked #2 and #3 respectively on this form factor.
  • On tablets, users are increasingly utilizing document editing and document access tools. They ranked #1 and #3 respectively on this form factor, with custom apps in between.

Good Technology’s reports are an ongoing initiative to track activations across the breadth of mobile platforms and devices in enterprises and governments. They are based on data aggregated from all devices spanning “more than 6,000 organizations in over 190 countries.”

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Apple designs and markets consumer electronics, computer software, and personal computers. The company's best-known hardware products include the Macintosh line of computers, the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad. Apple software includes t... read more »

Microsoft Corporation is a public multinational corporation headquartered in Redmond, Washington, USA that develops, manufactures, licenses, and supports a wide range of products and services predominantly related to computing through ... read more »

Google's innovative search technologies connect millions of people around the world with information every day. Founded in 1998 by Stanford Ph.D. students Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google today is a top web property in all major glob... read more »

Here’s How To De-Register iMessage If You’ve Switched Platforms With Apple’s New Tool

Sunday 9 November 2014 @ 3:17 pm
Screen Shot 2014-11-09 at 6.13.50 PM Apple has added a new tool to its website for removing phone numbers from iMessage registration, even if you no longer have the iPhone in question and can’t toggle iMessage off in settings. The website lets you simply enter a phone number, where Apple will send you a code via text message, which you then enter into a field on the same site to confirm your desire to remove your number… Read More

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