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Top software trends of 2016

Well, that was an odd year. We got a very public lesson in why it's important to keep online communications secure; we went outside to toss Poke Balls at augmented-reality pocket monsters; and we asked inanimate objects in our homes for assistance. Here are the software trends of 2016 that we found intriguing, important, or entertaining.

Streaming services put cable TV on notice

Cutting the cord keeps getting easier and more attractive. When PlayStation Vue launched in March... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Tags: Messaging , Apple , apps , Google , Facebook , streaming , app

7 apps to beat your bad habits

Each new year brings new opportunities to quit vices like smoking and binge drinking and to cut back on indulgences like excessive carb intake, online shopping sprees, and food deliveries. Begin a journey toward better health and wealth in 2015 with these seven apps.

Quit smoking

QuitNow (iOS, Android) Smoking causes one in five US deaths, according to the American Heart Association. The good news is that quitting is possible. Ease withdrawal with QuitNow, a highly personalized... Read More »

Topics: Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Tags: Windows software , app

Podcasts app update adds iCloud sync, custom stations

A new update to Apple's standalone app for podcasts adds a handful of new features and fixes some bugs.

Key among the new stuff is a way to create custom stations that get new episodes of podcasts when they're published. You can also set whether you want these stations to start with the oldest or newest episodes. These stations are stored on Apple's iCloud, so if you're switching between two different iOS devices, they'll stay synced up.

Apple's also tweaked... Read More »

Topics: iOS Software

Tags: Apple , apps , iOS , update , app

BlueStacks deals in Android with AMD

BlueStacks's technology for running Android apps on Windows fuels a new way for people with AMD-powered computers to get Android apps on their Windows PCs, the two companies announced today.

AMD's new AppZone Player brings more than 500,000 Android apps to AMD-powered computers, and works on Windows 7 and Windows 8 now.

"This will unify the Win 8 and mobile ecosystems," wrote BlueStacks CEO Rosen Sharma in an e-mail to CNET explaining team-up. "Just by virtue of the... Read More »

Topics: Android Software

Tags: Android , Windows software , app

Instagrille 2.0 puts Instagram on your desktop

One of the biggest gripes about megapopular photo social-networking service Instagram is that you can't use it on desktops. Well, with Instagrille, you can get pretty close. Instagrille is an Instagram viewer for Windows, and it's available through Pokki's desktop apps platform. Sure, there are several third-party, Web-based Instagram viewers out there, but Instagrille is unique because it's an actual downloadable desktop app.

For those who don't know, Pokki is an app store for your Windows computer. You... Read More »

Tags: Windows , Windows software , app , Instagram

Got 'banned' on Android? There's an app store for that

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As CyanogenMod skates past 1 million active users, making it by far the most popular custom flavor of Android around, one of its main developers has asked the Android community if there's interest in creating an app store for Android modders and their fans.

Koushik Datta suggested a marketplace designed for apps, ROMs, and emulators that Google refuses to host and carriers refuse to allow. Not surprisingly, the answer he got was resoundingly... Read More »

Topics: Mac Software

Tags: Android , Windows software , app

Huge update released for Facebook iOS app

A huge update for the iOS Facebook app (Free) released today adds some features users have been waiting for, along with other fixes and tweaks to the interface.

Among the major new features, the updated iOS Facebook app is supposed to improve sharing options, add tagging of friends and places in posts, tweak the design of both Profile and Group walls, and provide added privacy controls on posts that match your settings on the Web site.

Smaller refinements and bug fixes... Read More »

Topics: Mac Software

Tags: iPhone , iOS , Facebook , Windows software , update , app , sharing

It turns out riding backward on a pig IS fun

Some time ago, a friend sent me a YouTube link with no explanation. In fact, I'm pretty sure the e-mail didn't even have a subject. Once I clicked the link and started watching the video I realized why: how does one neatly describe the hilarity of a video in which a monkey forcibly rides a pig backward? Even better, the video's creator, Perry Gripp, wrote a silly song to go with the video. If you haven't seen it, the video... Read More »

Tags: iPhone , Apple , games , app

Mac OS X Lion review: A worthy upgrade for the price

When Apple showed off Mac OS X Lion at the Worldwide Developers Conference keynote speech earlier this year, it was clear the company had paid attention to its successes with the popular iOS devices, and was now beginning to include successful iOS features in its flagship OS.

Also, with Apple laptops and tablets now far outpacing desktop sales, Apple has moved from a primarily desktop computer company to embrace mobile computing. This release of Mac OS X seems to be... Read More »

Topics: Mac Software

Tags: Apple , iOS , Mac , app , desktop

BlackBerry Travel flies up to version 1.1

Jet-setting BlackBerry addicts now have a few more convenient travel tools at their disposal, thanks to today's update of the BlackBerry Travel app to version 1.1. After releasing the first iteration of BlackBerry Travel back in February, it appears the folks at RIM have listened to user feedback and rolled some of the louder suggestions into this newest release.

One of the splashiest new features users will find in 1.1 is Mobile Rental Car Booking. According to RIM, the updated app... Read More »

Topics: Mac Software

Tags: BlackBerry , Windows software , app