OS

Add special effects to your smartphone movies

In my youth, I wanted nothing more than to make movies. But the tools just weren't available -- not on my budget, anyway. And even if I'd had a movie camera, special effects were out of the question. UFO invasions, dinosaur attacks, bomb explosions -- these were the purview of Industrial Light & Magic, not little Ricky Broida.

Oh, to be a kid again. Armed with nothing more than a smartphone and the right apps, you can shoot in razor-sharp HD and add all kinds of startlingly good special effects.

You handle the storyboarding and final edits; I'… Read more

Make use of the iCloud keychain

Apple's keychain feature in OS X saves your passwords, keys, and certificates for seamless authentication to various system and Web services. In addition to storing keys, one of the features of the keychain is secure notes, where you can save important information like registration codes and product serial numbers, or authentication information for services that do not interface with the keychain. These notes will be securely encrypted along with your standard passwords, certificates, Safari credit card entries, and other information.

To make a secure note, you simply open the Keychain Access utility and choose "New Secure Note" … Read more

Use IFTTT, iOS to hold you accountable for going to the gym

One of the hardest parts of starting to work out is staying motivated to actually go do it. Friends and family members can be terrific motivators, especially if you team up with someone to go work out with you.

But not everyone is going to have the option of a regular workout buddy. So instead of sitting at home unmotivated, use your iPhone, the automation service If This Then That (IFTTT), and a friend to hold you accountable.

First you'll need to install IFTTT's iPhone app. (IFTTT can be used with Android, but it's easier with iOS.) … Read more

Apple's SXSW iTunes Festival app doesn't require iOS 7.1

Turns out iOS 7.1 isn't coming out just yet.

The next iteration of Apple's mobile operating system is expected to come out sooner rather than later, and there was some talk that Apple would align its release with the its concert at the South By Southwest festival.

The company is holding its iTunes Festival -- featuring the likes of Coldplay, Imagine Dragons and Pitbull -- starting March 11 in Austin, Texas. Apple will stream the performances to iOS devices via an app, but Daring Fireball's Jon Gruber wrote earlier this week that someone had told him … Read more

Use TheFind on Android to shop, compare retail outlets

Shopping online is super convenient. You get to sit in the comfort of your own home, browsing various sites to find the best deal on a product. Sometimes you don't even have to browse Web sites, due to most major retail chains having native apps for various platforms.

But let's face it, going to a number of sites (or launching a number of apps) brings a whole new meaning to the phrase "shop till you drop." To tackle this first-world problem, TheFind will help you "search over 500,000 stores and 500 million products" … Read more

Five super useful features in Chrome mobile

For a smartphone browser that's fast and feature-packed, Chrome is a no-brainer choice. Not only did it crush the competition in our browser speed test, but its countless desktop-like tools and settings make it a hot contender against whatever default browser you're currently rocking.

For the best Chrome experience, make use of these built-in features.

Share boatloads of iPhone photos, videos with WeTransfer

There are a number of ways -- e-mail, text, iCloud, Photo Stream, Dropbox, and social networking to name a handful of popular options -- to share iPhone photos. There are also a number of ways -- email, text, iCloud, YouTube, Vimeo, and social networking to name a few -- to share iPhone videos. There may not be an easier way, however, to share a greater number of photos and videos than WeTransfer.

WeTransfer has been around for a number of years as a desktop Web app for transferring large files, and yesterday it released a WeTransfer app for iOS (an … Read more

Apple's iOS 7.0.6 passes 50% adoption rate -- report

Apple's iOS 7.0.6 is nestled on the devices of more than half of all iOS users, at least those tracked by Onswipe.

In data sent to CNET on Wednesday, Onswipe found that global adoption of iOS 7.0.6 quickly rose following its launch on February 21. From a 10 percent reach on February 22, the latest iOS update had won over 30 percent of users on February 26, 40 percent on February 28, and just over 50 percent on March 3.

Onswipe's mobile market and data cover more than 17.7 million iOS devices around … Read more

Windows tablets, your time may be at hand

The tablet market is shifting into a more mature phase, and that figures to be a good thing for Microsoft.

Market researcher IDC on Thursday forecast a dramatic slowdown in the expansion of the worldwide market for tablets, with the growth rate simmering at 19.4 percent in 2014, down from a sizzling growth rate of 51.6 percent last year. The firm defines that market as including both slate-style tablets and 2-in-1 devices.

As the tablet market cools down, IDC said, sales to businesses will help lift the profile of Microsoft's Windows operating system, which has been in the shadow of Apple's iOS and Google's AndroidRead more

Google exec: Android adoption most successful in history

A Google executive claimed Wednesday that Android has seen the fastest and most successful adoption of any operating system in history.

Speaking at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media and Telecom Conference, Nikesh Arora, senior vice president at Google, said the following, courtesy of Seeking Alpha:

I mean, look, in the history of operating systems, I think Android has been the quickest and most successful adoption of an operating system in the world. So you just sort of stop, take pause and say, oh my God, that's crazy. Nobody could have ever predicted that we're going to get an … Read more