Services and applications

Google releases Android Device Manager app

Google today released a mobile app for its Android Device Manager service. Available for free in the Google Play store, the app lets users manage and secure an Android tablet or phone associated with their Google account from another Android device (running Gingerbread and up).

The app gives access to all Android Device Manager features, including locating a tablet or phone on a map, resetting its lock code, and erasing it completely. Just note that your missing device must be connected to the cellular network or to Wi-Fi for it to perform the commands.

Though Google released Android Device Manager … Read more

Why it's time to get excited about IFA 2013

Time to get excited, tech fans: we're just days away from IFA 2013, the gadget extravaganza where the new Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch will lead a torrent of new and exciting technology. With our heady mix of live blogs, thrilling video, and expert hands-on First Takes, you'll be right at the heart of the action.

IFA is an industry trade show held every year in Germany, bringing together the world's technology titans at an event considered to be the European CES. Around 240,000 gadget fans flock to Berlin each year to join the scarlet-tressed Miss … Read more

Walmart exec: Mobile can revive personal touch for shoppers

LAS VEGAS -- Walmart believes smartphones can deliver the same kind of personalized service that founder Sam Walton embraced with his first store.

Where e-commerce brought the store to the Web, smartphones are bringing the Web to physical stores, with each consumer able to access data from their phones, according to Gibu Thomas, head of mobile for Walmart.

"The future of retail is the history of retailing," he said during a keynote address at the CTIA Wireless trade show on Wednesday. "It's about a personalized experience for each shopper delivered through the smartphone."

Critics fear … Read more

The idea of a Facebook Android version makes my head hurt

On what should be a quiet Good Friday, speculation is flying over an Android-themed event that Facebook has scheduled for next Thursday.

Of course, the most low-hanging rumor fruit is that the company will really-we-mean-it-this-time introduce the endlessly discussed "Facebook phone." This is one rumor mill that makes me ill so I'll defer to BGR's Zach Epstein to explain what I think the chances are of such a device. (Spoiler: there's not a chance)

Please, God, no Now I could be wrong. And if I am, I'll say so next week if the rumored HTC MystRead more

Google celebrates one year of Google Play with deals

Today marks exactly one year since Google rebranded the Android Market into the Google Play store and the company is observing the occasion with limited-time deals and freebies.

Deals this week include $5 books and 99-cent movie rentals as well as select magazines for only $1 each. What's more, a number of television shows are being offered at no cost, including "Breaking Bad," "Community," and "Justified."

A handful of Android games also have gotten in on the birthday love, offering free, exclusive in-game features. Disney's Gnome Village, for instance, features an Android-exclusive … Read more

Mobile World Congress: The year's best smartphone party

As I write this, CNET writers from three countries are traveling to Barcelona, Spain, to bring you the best of the annual Mobile World Congress trade show.

If you're a smartphone fan, you probably know that Mobile World Congress (MWC) is a big deal. And if you don't know about it but still love gadgets and technology, there are very good reasons why you should care. I'll explain.

Full Mobile World Congress coverage from CNET

To put it simply, MWC is the most important wireless trade show of the year. It's bigger than CES (where, no … Read more

Government competition brings best of British mobile innovation to MWC

Along with the latest smartphone releases from Nokia, LG and more, this year's Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, will play host to 20 of Britain's most innovative mobile companies thanks to the Smart U.K. competition.

The competition -- organized in association with U.K. government body U.K. Trade and Investment (UKTI) -- saw over 60 British-based companies enter, which was narrowed down to 20 by an expert judging panel. All 20 will be given entry to Mobile World Congress by UKTI -- although they'll have to pay for their own flights and accommodation -- … Read more

Qualcomm to demo first StreamBoost Wi-Fi routers at CES 2013

It's frustrating when you share the Internet between multiple devices and some of them hog all the bandwidth, leaving the rest crawling. Qualcomm has something that could potentially ease this pain.

The mobile chipmaker today introduced its StreamBoost technology, which is designed to "optimize performance and capacity of home networks" by enabling the home router to intelligently manage the broadband connection. Qualcomm says the new technology allots to each connected device and each application the bandwidth it needs, and no more, to ensure the best possible experience on all connected devices.

It's important to note that … Read more

WiGig Alliance to consolidate activities in Wi-Fi Alliance

The Wi-Fi Alliance and the Wireless Gigabit Alliance, aka WiGig, announced today their agreement to consolidate WiGig's certification and development under Wi-Fi Alliance. This is the result of longterm collaboration between the two organizations, since they reached an agreement on the standard of multigigabit wireless networking in May 2011.

While the Wi-Fi Alliance is a popular organization that tests and certifies Wi-Fi devices to guarantee their interoperability, WiGig is a lesser-known entity that develops the 60GHz-based WiGig technology specifications. The Wi-Fi Alliance, however, initiated the work to develop an interoperability certification for 60GHz products.

The WiGig standard, also known … Read more

Samsung Galaxy S3 to get MultiView, Smart Rotation

Samsung Galaxy S3 users may soon see their handset acting more like its bigger brother, the Galaxy Note 2.

That's because according to the SamMobile blog, the Galaxy S3 will soon receive Samsung's MultiView feature as part of a coming 4.1.2 update.

In addition to Multi-View, which lets the user run and view two applications at the same time, the update allegedly includes a customizable notification panel, a new gallery app, the continuous input keyboard, and Smart Rotation (where display adjusts to angle of view).

It's unclear how far along Samsung is at this stage, … Read more