Long before Transformers director Michael Bay choked onstage at Samsung's lavish CES 2014 press conference, the Korean company was just another electronics outfit begging for attention. But after decades at CES, Samsung is now the undisputed king of the show. Its blowout media events are the largest and most difficult to get into. Samsung Electronics CEO BK Yoon is kicking off the show next month by hosting the prestigious opening keynote. And it's one of the few tech giants left standing at CES, as Microsoft and others abandon it. Samsung's glorious rise mirrors its ascent in the mobile industry, and it's also yet another example of the company's oft-repeated formula for success: Time, money and perseverance lead to victory.
What was that? You wanted to get some recipes going for news-content automation in addition to push notifications to grab an umbrella for tomorrow? Well, lucky you because Time Inc. announced it's adding IFTTT (If This Then That) support for five of its publications: Entertainment Weekly, InStyle, People, Sports Illustrated, and of course Time. The outfit says it's using in-house tech to make it easier to automate stuff like sending all NFL articles to Pocket so you can read 'em on the subway, for example. Another is getting a weekly movie summary sent straight to your email from Entertainment Weekly. This update benefits both Android and iOS users alike and it's available right this minute. Now its just up to you to see if too many cooks can spoil these recipes.
You may have to give up a few things from Gmail to use Google's task-oriented Inbox email app, but smartwatch support isn't one them. The company has updated the app (on Android) to bring Android Wear support, letting you check mail, send replies and mark completed items from the comfort of your wrist. There are some meaningful upgrades whether or not you have advanced wristwear, including suggestions for reminders and a better tablet interface. Swing by Google Play if any of these refinements are the excuse you needed to give Inbox a spin.
Source: Google Play
Recently picked up a Nexus 9 but you're still jealous of your iPad-toting pals because they can play Blizzard's Warcraft-themed card game? Well, relax because Hearthstone is coming to Android. It's launching in waves, according to the publisher, starting with a roll out in Australia, Canada and New Zealand ahead of a worldwide release in a few days. And as a way to reward your patience -- the game initially launched back in April -- Blizzard is giving away a free pack of Classic Cards. Just finish a game in any mode and, well, you'll have some new cards to use. You don't even have to win! Perhaps even better? If you're coming in from another platform, your card collection and progress will transfer over to Google's mobile OS. Oh, and in case you want a peek inside the brains of a few of the folks who work on the game, check out this Reddit AMA from earlier today.
If you're already bored by the annual speed upgrades we're seeing in mobile chips (can you really feel the difference between a Galaxy S4 and S5?), Qualcomm's giving you a few more reasons to consider upgrading. Its octa-core Snapdragon 810 chip, which will likely end up in many of next year's top phones and tablets, sports a few new features that go far beyond the megahertz rat race. And it might just be the first step towards your tablet replacing your laptop -- which makes sense now that Qualcomm has its eyes set beyond mobile.
Microsoft on Thursday unveiled a new special sale part of its 12 Days of Deals online promotion, after recently offering buyers significant discounts on a 7-inch Toshiba Windows tablet, a Blu Win HD smartphone and a great Xbox One bundle. On December 11th, buyers will be able to save $80 on a brand new 10.1-inch Asus Transformer Book T100 Signature Edition 2-in-1 tablet/laptop combo.
When Google vowed that its Material Design style would reach every corner of its business, it wasn't kidding. The company has just overhauled its iOS search app, and that layered look is everywhere -- in fact, the app resembles a simplified version of Android 5.0 Lollipop. There's a new recents section that uses Lollipop-style cards to show your past queries, and the new navigation bar makes it look like you picked up an Android phone instead. It's much easier to find your way around than before, however, and there's deeper Google Maps integration that lets you browse Street View panoramas without switching apps. Image searches now produce elegant mosaics, too. If you're a loyal iOS fan but spend a lot of time in Google's ecosystem, you can grab the new search tool today.
Source: App Store
There you were, enjoying your iPad for Netflix, perhaps occasionally flinging some relatively upset avians or getting cerebral with Monument Valley. Suddenly, an air raid siren. Someone in the distance shouts, "Glory to Arstotzka!" What is even happening? It's Papers, Please, the post-Soviet Bloc simulation that puts "players" in the position of an unwitting immigrations office, stuck on the border of two dangerous territories, trying to make enough money to feed and care for an ailing family. The critically-lauded game is heading to iPad tomorrow, and we're betting it'll be just as "fun" as the first time around on PC. It's creator Lucas Pope says it's, "the complete game, optimized for touch"; one bit is missing, though: "The iPad version has no full nudity option for the search scanner photos. Apple rejected that build for containing 'pornographic content.'" I think we'll manage.
Seriously though, Papers, Please is one you shouldn't miss. It's not always the most "fun" game, but it's an incredible example of what can be done with games as a medium outside of "shoot the bad guy." We don't know the price just yet, but we'll update this as soon as we find out. Check out the video below the break for an example of what we're talking about.