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Date

20th October 2017

AMC’s new VR apps will immerse you in The Walking Dead and Into the Badlands

Every fan of The Walking Dead has surely imagined what it would be like to encounter a walker in real life. Similarly, if you watch Into the Badlands, you’d probably love to get up close with the flight scenes. Thanks to two new VR apps from TV network AMC, you’ll be able to watch both shows as part of a new immersive experience.

AMC VR takes you through the screen and into your favorite shows.

Read More

AMC’s new VR apps will immerse you in The Walking Dead and Into the Badlands was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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This 6-port Lumsing desktop charger is down to just $8

Desktop chargers are insanely convenient, if you don’t have one already.

Is this deal for me?

This Lumsing 60W 6-port USB desktop charger is down to $8.49 with code DS987631 on Amazon. Without the code, it goes for $17, and this price matches a deal we shared once before.

This charger comes with five micro USB to USB cables. Nearly one for every port! If you don’t need that many cables, you can get the same charger with only two cables for $7.99 using the same coupon code. Lose three cords, save 50 cents.

Features include:

Detects and automatically switches to the right charging mode of the connected digital device for full speed charging up to 3 amps per port or 12 amps overall.
Via 6 ports, delivers 60 watts of high-power to simultaneously charge two iPad Airs and four iPhone 6s at high speed.
The built-in Multi-Protection System ensures complete protection for you and your devices.
Phones and devices can be quite expensive, so we kept that in mind when we designed this desktop charger.

Both chargers come with an 18-month warranty.

TL;DR

What makes this deal worth considering? – The price is really low, and these chargers come with cables, which is a nice touch.
Things to know before you buy! – The included cables are all micro USB. If you need something like a Lightning cable, you can get one from Anker for just a few bucks.

See at Amazon

Happy thrifting!

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The first speaker with Microsoft Cortana is a great listener

More about Microsoft, Highlights, Reviews, Mashable Choice, and Cortana

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Harman Kardon Invoke review: The first Cortana speaker sounds amazing

Smart speakers are everywhere this year. So far, we’ve seen new entries from Apple, Amazon, Google and Sonos. Now, Microsoft is finally ready to join the party. The Harman Kardon Invoke is the first speaker to feature Microsoft’s Cortana virtual assi… – Source

Facebook Messenger lets you send cash to friends with PayPal

Messenger started making it easier to pay your friends for dinner back in 2015 when it introduced the option to transfer money in-app with a credit or debit card. If PayPal has always been more convenient, though, you’ll love this collaboration: Face… – Source

On the Pixel 2 XL, OLED displays, and Samsung

There are a lot of reasons to choose one phone over the other, and the only right choice is the one you make.

The internet is like that big platter your grandmother breaks out during the holidays. The one with little compartments for all the different things, from olives to cheese to onion dip. In our compartment, where everything mobile and all the things that connect to all the other things live, everywhere you look you see that the Pixel 2 XL has a horrible display. Like, the worst ever.

At least that’s what the internet tells me. Tossing out the noise from folks who have never seen it and just like to say things to stir the pot, you’ll find that people have some issue with the overall quality, but very few people who have it or have used it think the display is bad. It’s just not as great as what we find in Samsung’s latest phones. My reaction to this is “duh.”

Nobody makes OLED displays at the sizes used for mobile devices as good as Samsung does. Not LG, not Toshiba, not Sony. Nobody. Nobody can “tune” an OLED display as well as Samsung can. This is because Samsung was one of the pioneers of OLED display tech and it throws away as many panels that don’t meet its standards as other companies make in total. Samsung is the best there is, and anyone saying differently should be offering an explanation why.

No other company comes close to Samsung when making small OLED panels.

Samsung Electronics is a hardware company. It not only makes the best displays but makes other parts that are best-in-class or close to it: processors, memory controllers, solid-state memory, flash memory and all sorts of other electronics. This is what Samsung does, and has been doing since 1987 when Samsung split into groups like Samsung Electronics and Samsung Life Insurance. This is what Samsung Electronics is very, very good at.

Even if you buy a phone from another company that uses a Samsung OLED display, it’s not going to look as good as a phone that says Samsung on the back. This will be an unpopular opinion, but that doesn’t mean it’s not true. Samsung goes the extra mile because it takes pride in its display technology. And it should — as phone enthusiasts, we all know it.

Google is not a hardware company. It is trying to become one and do a reverse Apple thing (Apple started with hardware first), but right now it has four phones that it designed and had other companies build, and one in-house SoC with the Pixel Visual Core when it comes to mobile hardware. The Google Wifi or Chromecast unit you see weren’t built by Google, either. Google is a software company. A software company that earns a very healthy income through advertising.

We – Source

Bits: Farhad and Mike’s Week in Tech: Regulation Is Looming

In this week’s tech newsletter, the tech giants battle Washington’s regulatory fervor. Also, Lyft gets a lot of money, and Google may remake Toronto. – Source

Harman Kardon Invoke review – CNET

Microsoft’s answer to Amazon Echo, Google Home and Apple HomeKit is here with the Harman Kardon Invoke. The first smart speaker with Cortana built in, the $199 Invoke sounds great and looks good, but falls short on skills. – Source

Take a look at Harman Kardon’s Cortana-enabled smart speaker – CNET

Microsoft’s answer to Amazon Echo, Google Home and Apple HomePod is a $199 Cortana-enabled smart speaker with Harman Kardon audio. – Source

You can now PayPal friends in Messenger and get help via chat

PayPal users in the U.S. will now be able to send and receive person-to-person payments over Facebook Messenger, the company announced this morning. The deeper integration with Messenger’s platform, which will also include PayPal’s first customer service bot for handling customer questions and requests for help, follows a series of tie-ups between the two companies. Last year,… Read More

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Because someone had to make the first Cortana smart speaker

People often stop after Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant when rattling off the list of smart assistants. Cortana really gets no love at all. The oversight can be chalked up, in part, to the fact that AI has been mostly desktop-bound. No one’s really bothered to take Cortana to the next level — Microsoft certainly isn’t taking the initiative. Read More

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World’s first panoramic sunroof airbag ready to deploy – Roadshow

Korean supplier Hyundai Mobis hints its novel safety device is headed for a premium SUV. – Source

Save $45 on these certified refurbished Amazon Tap speakers

Just to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission.

Save $45 today on certified refurbished Amazon Tap speakers. As the name suggests, give this speaker a tap and you can ask for music from your favorite streaming service like Spotify, iHeartRadio, or Pandora. With a WiFi connection, you can even ask Alexa to play music, order a Lyft, or check the weather for you.

The speaker makes up the entire device, so it can deliver clear 360-degree audio for up to nine hours. You can set it in the charging cradle when it needs a bit of juice.

The Amazon Tap normally costs $109.00, but you can get this certified refurbished Tap today for $64.99 and save 41%

More about Amazon Alexa, Bluetooth, Amazon Tap, Bluetooth Speakers, and Deals – Source

Famous Irishmen subject of Westminster Wiki editing spree

Someone with a Westminster IP address has been editing web entries on famous Irish people. – Source

Serial entrepreneur Ben Metcalfe joins newly independent VC Ridge Ventures

Ridge Ventures, which is the new incarnation of the old IDG Ventures USA, has made a significant new hire in its path towards its future as a newly independent VC firm. It’s brought on Ben Metcalfe, formerly of WP Engine and Uber, as its first-ever Principal. He brings a very broad experience as an entrepreneur, angel investor, software engineer, product developer and operator, said… Read More

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Google to fix invisible Pixel 2 menu button, says it’s just a bug

An invisible menu button was recently discovered on the Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL. The button, housed at the far right of the navigation bar, opens the hamburger (3 dots) menu of the screen its on. Despite being a fun Easter Egg for some folks, Google has now confirmed that to CNET that this feature is a bug that will be patched out in future.

The button works only on the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, not the originals, and only in certain places (Settings, Calculator, Messages, Docs, among others). It also doesn’t do anything that you couldn’t do normally anyway — it’s just another way to do it.

Editor’s PickYou can now remap the Pixel 2 squeeze gesture to any other app

The Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL include a squeeze gesture to launch Google Now or silence incoming calls. This is known as Active Edge and it’s a feature that seems to be responsive and …

It’s not exactly practical, either — while using the bottom bar is convenient for many interactions, you’ll need to reach your thumb up to the top of the display to press one of the items that the menu opens anyway (unless you just wanted to see what was contained inside the menu, in which case, fair enough it’s probably easier where it is). Check it out in the short video below via Android Police.

It isn’t clear exactly when the button will be patched out, but it may only take a few days. If you want to press it, best act fast.

For more of our Google Pixel 2 coverage check out the links below:

Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL: where to buy
Google Pixel 2 vs. Google Pixel: what’s changed?
Google Pixel 2 and Pixel Buds International Giveaway!
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Equity podcast: IPOs for Stitch Fix, MongoDB and SendGrid, and Alphabet’s Lyft investment

Welcome to Equity, TechCrunch’s podcast about venture capital and the tech business. On the latest episode, we were joined by Barry Eggers, co-founder and a general partner at Lightspeed Venture Partners. There was a lot of IPO news this week. MongoDB debuted and we saw filings on Thursday for both Stitch Fix and SendGrid. And, of course, there was the inevitable ridesharing news.… Read More

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Political podcasting tips: Miliband, Chorley and Mason

Getting tips about going digital from Ed Miliband, Matt Chorley and Chris Mason. – Source

The best LG V30 cases and covers

Are you thinking of getting a nice case for your new LG V30? If that’s the case (pardon the pun), you’ve come to the right place! There’s a good number of V30 covers available on the market, and we understand that it might be a bit hard to filter out the ones that are truly worthy of attention.
Thus, we’ve rounded up some of the finest cases money can buy. Of course, what’s best for you will largely depend on your needs and preferences, so our picks are divided into several different categories. Whatever your tastes might be, we think you … – Source

Moto X4 Review: Return of the X

The Moto X4 revives the Moto X name, but it’s no longer the Moto X we once knew. It now comes in the form of an Android One device and it joins Google’s short list of Project Fi-compatible devices. If we’re being perfectly honest here, the only thing the Moto X4 shares with the Moto X’s of yesteryear is it’s name. Otherwise, this is a completely different device with a new direction.

Being under the Android One program, the Moto X4 becomes a great affordable entry point into Google’s Project Fi. But can the rest of the phone live up expectations? Find out in our full review!

Design

Unlike previous Moto Xs that were highly customizable with different backing materials and accent colors, you don’t get any of that here with the Moto X4. Instead, the design of the X4 falls in line with Moto’s Z series of flagship devices, minus the Moto Mods. It’s made predominantly of glass, like most phones seem to be nowadays, with glass on the front and rear and a smooth metal frame wrapping around the perimeter. The corners are nicely rounded and the backside is ever so slightly tapered along the edges allowing the phone to rest comfortably in the hand.

The phone’s overall footprint isn’t that big either so it’s much easier to use in one hand compared to most other phones out on the market. The glass backing of course does mean that fingerprints are not easy to hide, so if you care about keeping your device looking pristine at all times I’d recommend carrying a cleaning cloth with this one.

Otherwise, there’s nothing too flashy about the Moto X4’s design, as it looks pretty standard in other aspects. The bezels are average in size and the camera on the rear protrudes like other Moto devices, except it’s merely an aesthetic choice here and serves no purpose like it does on the Moto Z line.

Display

The screen of the Moto X4 doesn’t go edge-to-edge, nor does it have curved glass or rounded corners. It’s just a normal smartphone display without any frills. It’s an LCD display that measures in at 5.2 inches with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 or Full HD. It’s not a display that will blow your socks off, but it’s perfectly serviceable and I didn’t have any major complaints with this screen during my testing.

The colors are quite pleasant for an LCD, viewing angles are nice, and outdoor visibility was not a problem even under harsh sunlight. Black levels however, are not quite as good as an AMOLED screen. That’s just to be expected, but the screen didn’t exhibit common LCD issues like any noticeable light bleed or uneven lighting around the edges of the screen, at least not on my unit.

Performance

The Moto X4 falls squarely in the mid-range category, so the X4 is powered by a Snapdragon 630 processor and 3 GB of RAM for running apps and multitasking. On paper it may not be the most powerful phone, but just like the – Source

2017 Zero Motorcycles Zero SR Release Date, Price and Specs – Roadshow

The Zero SR has more torque than you could ever need and handling that’ll put a smile on your face, but short range may leave you frowning. – Source

Pixel 2 available to purchase from Google Store in Australia, shipments begin next week

If you live in Australia, and have been eyeing the Pixel 2 duo you’d be glad to know the phones can now be pre-booked from the company’s Australian online store.

The listing reveals shipments for the Pixel 2 begins October 27 onwards, while those for the XL variant will take 4-7 weeks (depending on the model you order).

The standard model – Pixel 2 – starts at AUD 1,079 or $845 (64GB) and goes up to AUD 1,229 or $965 (128 GB). Aside from Just Black and Clearly White, the Kinda Blue color option is also available, although only in 64GB storage.

The XL model, on the other hand,…

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2017 Zero SR has electric style – Roadshow

The Zero SR’s understated looks bely its torque-filled character. – Source

Snag a Lucero color changing smart bulb, no WiFi hub required

Just to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission.

The Smart Bulb from Lucero is exactly what your next party needs.

This advanced light bulb can shift colors through its companion app, which gives you access to more than 16 million different colors. You can set up rave lights for parties, mellow lights for relaxation, or dark colors for your daily brooding sessions. You can even schedule different colors at different times, so you can program the bulb to wake you up to a soothing warm light.

The …

More about Lighting, Smart Home, Philips, Mashable Shopping, and Shopping Amazon

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New function in gene-regulatory protein discovered

Researchers show how the protein CBP affects the expression of genes through its interaction with the basal machinery that reads the instructions in our DNA. – Source

Experts recommend fewer lab tests for hospitalized patients

Experts have compiled published evidence and crafted an experience-based quality improvement blueprint to reduce repetitive lab testing for hospitalized patients. – Source

Cool roofs have water saving benefits too

The energy and climate benefits of cool roofs have been well established: By reflecting rather than absorbing the sun’s energy, light-colored roofs keep buildings, cities, and even the entire planet cooler. Now a new study has found that cool roofs can also save water by reducing how much is needed for urban irrigation. – Source

‘Selfish brain’ wins out when competing with muscle power, study finds

New research on our internal trade-off when physical and mental performance are put in direct competition has found that cognition takes less of a hit, suggesting more energy is diverted to the brain than body muscle. Researchers say the findings support the ‘selfish brain’ theory of human evolution. – Source

Life goes on for marine ecosystems after cataclysmic mass extinction

One of the largest global mass extinctions did not fundamentally change marine ecosystems, scientists have found. – Source

‘Y’ a protein unicorn might matter in glaucoma

A protein shaped like a ‘Y’ makes scientists do a double-take and may change the way they think about a protein sometimes implicated in glaucoma. The Y is a centerpiece in myocilin, binding four other components nicknamed propellers together like balloons on strings. – Source

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