Mihaita Bamburic

Samsung Galaxy S6 edge comes out unscathed after brutal drop test

Samsung Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge unboxing and hands-on videos

We love watching smartphone drop tests. It does not even have to be a smartphone that we want to buy, watching it fall and meet the pavement is just too entertaining to pass. Some might even call it addictive. And predicting the extent of the damage, based on the build material or how exposed the display is, is part of the fun. Getting it right can be rewarding.

Samsung's new Galaxy S6 edge comes with all the right ingredients for a drop test that could end in massive damage. It's got a glass back, the main camera does not sit flush with the body, the surrounding frame is made of metal and, to top it all off, the display is curved on both sides. Before watching the so-called drop test, I expected to see a broom being used at the end.

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Pebble Time raises more than $20 million on Kickstarter

Pebble Time Steel

Pebble is one the few startups that knows how to get the most out of a Kickstarter campaign. Three years ago, it was the first on the crowdsourcing platform to raise more than $10 million in funding, and now it is the first to have broken the $20 million mark. Pebble's latest record is likely to last for a while, seeing as it took over two years for its first one to be broken.

At the time of writing this article, Pebble's Time campaign has attracted nearly 78,000 backers, who have pledged $20.16 million in total. The average contribution is $258.9, which exceeds the latest asking prices of $179 for Time and $250 for Time Steel.

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Samsung Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 edge pre-orders kick off March 27

Samsung Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge unboxing and hands-on videos

Samsung today announced that its Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 edge flagships will go up for pre-order in US on March 27. The two smartphones will be offered through all major carriers in the country, and will be officially available on April 10.

Both smartphones will be available in US with 32 GB, 64 GB and 128 GB of internal storage, in Black Sapphire, Gold Platinum and White Pearl. So far, AT&T and T-Mobile are the only major carriers to have have revealed pricing information for Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 edge.

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HTC One M9 goes on sale March 27

HTC One M9_Silver_PerL

HTC today announced that its latest flagship, One M9, will be available in the US starting March 27. The smartphone will first go on sale online (as early as midnight), only hitting brick and mortar stores next month, on April 10.

One M9 faces stiff competition from Samsung's Galaxy S6. Coincidentally or not, that goes up for pre-order in the US starting tomorrow, and will be available in the country also on April 10. At the time of writing this article, AT&T and T-Mobile are the only major carriers to have revealed pricing information for One M9.

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Half of all Android users vulnerable to year-old security flaw

Android danger sign

Half of all Android users are still vulnerable to a security flaw uncovered in the most-popular mobile operating system early last year, according to a new report from security firm Palo Alto Networks. The vulnerability in question allows an attacker to modify or replace Android apps with malware without the user's knowledge.

Google was informed of the vulnerability in February 2014, a month after its discovery, and has since come up with a patch, which it has included in later revisions of Android 4.3 Jelly Bean and newer distributions. According to the latest data from Google, that still leaves 49.9 percent of all Android users unprotected.

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Emtec announces backwards-compatible DUO USB-C flash drive

EMTEC Duo USB C - package - 16gb

It's easy to get excited about the new USB Type-C connector. It's small, making even slimmer designs possible, it can be used to charge power-hungry devices, removing the need for dedicated charging ports, and, best of all, it can be plugged in both ways, making it easier to charge mobile devices at night. The last feature is certainly the highlight for most of us.

It all sounds great until we think about backwards compatibility. USB-C, as it's also known, is not compatible with older connectors, used on most PCs, laptops and consumer electronics, which severely diminishes its appeal. However, storage company Emtec has come up with an interesting workaround, announcing a USB-C flash drive which also features a full-size USB connector.

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Freedom! Apple cut my Windows Phone chains

Victory Winner Free

When I first pondered leaving Windows Phone behind, I imagined it would be for an Android flagship. It made sense. Android is, after all, much more permissive, has way more apps, and is available in a larger variety of smartphone flavors. And Google is committed to improving the operating system, launching at least one major update a year. Also, I use a Google Nexus 7 as my every day tablet; an Android smartphone would be a perfect fit. But things change.

Apple finally came up with bigger iPhones last year, and the prospect of ditching Windows Phone for a new iPhone suddenly became irresistible. It didn't hurt that iOS 8 dropped some of the annoying restrictions of its predecessors. Ultimately, I ended up with an iPhone 6 Plus. And, after two years of Windows Phones, using Apple's phablet as my daily driver can only be described as liberating.

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OnePlus One pricing goes up in Europe -- blame the weak Euro

OnePlus One

Now is not a great time to be a technology enthusiast in Europe. As you may know, local prices of anything from smartphones to motherboards are set in accordance to the USD. And it has appreciated considerably in relation to the Euro, which is now in the proverbial toilet. Put two and two together and have inevitable price hikes -- vendors don't want to sell at a loss, after all.

The extent of the damage to the vendors' bottom line depends on how much they're willing or can afford to lose. For a smartphone maker like OnePlus, which doesn't have high margins, the answer is not a lot, as it just announced it will soon command higher prices for its One "flagship killer" on the old continent.

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AnyMeeting lets you set up a conference call just by sending an email

Call Center

AnyMeeting is making it easier for anyone to create and join a conference call, as today the company launches a new conferencing service which does not require setting up any account or using any special software.

To set up a conference call you only have to create a new email, add everyone you want to talk to as recipients and then cc talk@anymeeting.com.

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A close look at the Windows 10 system requirements for smartphones, tablets and PCs

Microsoft launches Windows 10 Technical Preview for Phones

Microsoft has announced that Windows 10 will officially launch this summer. Once it is given the green light, the new operating system will be made available as a free upgrade to Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1 users. And to really get the market share ball rolling immediately after the release, Microsoft welcomes even those who are running pirated copies to join the pack.

Given Microsoft's ambitions, Windows 10 is obviously being designed so that it will run on as many configurations as possible. The minimum hardware requirements, which were just revealed by the company, paint a clear picture regarding the hardware we can expect to see in upcoming Windows 10 devices (ranging from low-end to high-end offerings) as well as the level of compatibility with existing systems, the latter of which users eligible for upgrade will have to pay close attention to. So, let's take a close look at the Windows 10 system requirements.

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Root already available for Samsung Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge

Samsung Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge unboxing and hands-on videos

Rooting is still a controversial topic among Android enthusiasts. Bring it up and be prepared to hear countless arguments for and against it. I don't fully support either side; I admit to having conflicting thoughts about it. On one hand, root opens up a world of possibilities, but, on the other hand, it's not often that one needs to take advantage of the cool things it enables.

However, we can all agree that what's most important is having the option to choose. And if you plan on getting a Samsung Galaxy S6 or Galaxy S6 Edge on launch day, then you should know that rooting its Android distribution will be possible right from the start.

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Mozilla approves Nazi-themed, anti-feminism Firefox extension [Update]

Mozilla Men Kampf Firefox extension

Mozilla could soon find itself at the center of a new controversy, as it just approved a Firefox extension, called Men Kampf, designed with the sole purpose of replacing so-called "radfem rethoric [sic] with nazi friendly alternatives".

Men Kampf scans the page that the Firefox user visits for any words considered to be linked to feminism -- certainly not radical feminism, as claimed in the description -- and replaces them, on the fly, with said "alternatives". As such, an article about feminism will quickly appear to be one about nazism. The developer behind the extension, Erim Secla, says that it's all "just for fun" in Men Kampf's description. Except that it's not.

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Sony rolls out Android 5.0 Lollipop, Xperia Z3 family getting it first

Sony Lollipop Xperia Z

While other Android makers have long begun to roll out Android 5.0 software updates, Sony is only now starting to make the first Lollipop incarnation available to its customers. The priority is the Xperia Z3 family, which includes Sony's current flagship smartphone.

Sony has decided that Xperia Z3 and Xperia Z3 Compact should be its first smartphones to get Android 5.0 Lollipop. The roll-out starts today, in Baltic and Nordic Europe. Here's what's new.

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How about a Nokia Lumia 635 Windows Phone for just $29.99?

Nokia Lumia 635 T-Mobile

If you want to get your hands on a new Windows Phone 8.1 smartphone without spending too much money or signing up for a two-year contract then Amazon might have just the thing for you.

Amazon is now offering Nokia Lumia 635, which is basically a low-end Windows Phone, as its Gold Box Deal of the Day, for just $29.99, which is $70 less than the usual $99.99 asking price.

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Bidding farewell to Google's Nexus 5

Google Nexus 5 Android action figure 2

When looking for an affordable high-end smartphone the other day Google's Nexus 5 was an obvious option. Even one and a half years after its launch, its hardware is still more than capable of running all the latest apps and games, while the camera can still be considered a decent shooter. The downside of going with Nexus 5 -- as with previous Nexus smartphones -- is battery life, which falls short of the competition. So I ended up getting something else.

It turned out to be a smart move, as Google just pulled Nexus 5 from its online store, after five months of coexisting with its latest flagship smartphone, Nexus 6. If you still want to get one then you will have to look at retailers and some carriers, which are likely to carry Nexus 5 for at least a few more months (until LG stops production and/or existing stock is depleted.)

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