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You can now use the Snapdeal app to book an Uber in India

By Team AA


Hailing a ride on Uber just got easier because you can now book their cab directly using just the Snapdeal app.

While Indian consumers have been enjoying the wave of discounts, bargains, and offers being given by e-commerce companies in their bid to woo customers, the intensifying competition is also forcing the players to enter into partnerships for trading their products and services on each others’ platform.

In April 2015, the online marketplace Snapdeal (Jasper Infotech Pvt. Ltd) forayed into the services space by acquiring Freecharge, a utility bill payments and mobile wallet service provider, for a huge $400 million, marking the biggest-ever acquisition in the Indian consumer Internet history. Snapdeal has now just begun offering flight and bus ticket bookings, hotel reservations, and food ordering services on its platform by entering into partnerships with Cleartrip, redBus, Zomato, and home services provider UrbanClap. Offering a range of services through partnerships, instead of just discounts, opens up additional revenue streams for Snapdeal and also ensures that users remain on the platform.

In its latest tie-up, Snapdeal has partnered with Uber by launching in-app integration with the ride-hailing service. This means that if you book a flight or a hotel from the Snapdeal app, you can now travel to the airport or the hotel in an Uber cab by booking the ride directly from the app without needing to install the Uber app on your device.

Snapdeal is currently offering this service on smartphones sporting Android 4.0 and higher, but has assured us that it will soon roll out the feature for other operating systems as well. If you’ve already installed the Snapdeal app on your Android device, then you’ll need to update it to the latest version in order to take advantage of this new feature.

This isn’t the first time that Uber is accepting bookings from outside its own app. For instance, in the US, Facebook recently tied up with Uber by allowing Messenger users to book their cab directly from its messaging app. Here in India, Google has also recently updated its Maps apps to make it easier for users to search for an Uber or Ola cab close to their location. It’ll be interesting to see if Snapdeal’s Indian rivals, Flipkart, Amazon, and Shopclues, also enter into similar partnerships or focus purely on selling products.

Snapdeal is now also offering a Rs 150 discount on your first ever Uber ride, and Rs 50 cashback on all subsequent rides today. You can download the Snapdeal app from the Google Play Store here.

Let us know in the comments below if you’ll find it convenient to book an Uber cab using the Snapdeal app!

…read more

Source:: android authority


Four ways smartphones are changing the world for the better

By Erdem Pulcu


Facebook in 2004. YouTube in 2005. Twitter in 2006. iPhone in 2007. Android in 2008. The launch of these landmark products has changed our lives dramatically over the last decade. We didn’t know it at the time, but these were milestones on the road to a new world. They were some of the key moments of the mobile revolution.

Not all changes brought by the mobile revolution have been positive. In fact, for certain groups of people from around the world, the explosion of mobile has brought misery and exploitation. We touch on this dark side of our mobile addiction here. But on a global scale, the mobile age has unlocked great benefits for all of us. In this post we’ll be looking at some of the ways smartphones have changed our world for the better.

Word spreads around the globe

One of the most significant improvements the mobile revolution has brought about is the speed at which information spreads from one part of the globe to another. It doesn’t matter if the content is to our liking or not. The visionaries who foresaw that people would like to own a small handheld device (i.e. the smartphone) that can connect them to millions of their peers over the internet were proven absolutely right!

Mass-media companies like BBC, CNN, Reuters, The Independent or The New York Times quickly recognized this potential and established official presences on Facebook or Twitter and other platforms, using them to broadcast breaking news around the clock.

It goes deeper than that. Thanks to the internet and our feature-packed smartphones, we can not only consume and interact with incoming news, we can also be the first ones to communicate things to the rest of the world if we happen to be at the right place, at the right time. And we’re doing this over devices that just two decades ago would’ve looked at home in sci-fi flicks.

Events in one country now have almost instant implications for the rest of the world. With steady improvements in network speeds and hardware, we’re more connected than ever. Remember the so-called Arab Spring (regardless of the eventual outcomes of the events): how social opposition movements spread out like wildfire; how people were inspired by citizens of other countries to demand similar liberties for themselves; and how people organized on social media to attend rallies and protests.


Although my personal experience with Periscope has been fairly disappointing (despite shooting from a phone with 4K camera and OIS over high-speed LTE), apps like it allow people to stand up as individual journalists and broadcast incidents live as they happen. We see footage shot with smartphones in mass-media almost every day now.

For marginalized groups, taking to social media has become an effective way to appeal to the general public. This can backfire, as inevitably, our online presence makes the internet a domain of interest for governments. Thus, we have a struggle between opposing forces – on one side people demanding equality, privacy and liberties; on the other, authorities who want to control and regulate. Aaron Swartz, the late internet activist, once said, “It is not, you know, only certain people have licence to speak, now everyone has a licence to speak. It’s a question of who gets heard”.

In my opinion, we are living through a transition period triggered by a dramatic change in mobile networks in the last decade and personal experience tell me that transition periods could be painful. But sooner or later things will stabilize and everyday liberties enjoyed by leading Western countries will spread out throughout the world. Surely, the mobile networks are speeding up this process.

Abolishing boundaries

I have been searching for an informative graph showing how the average number of countries people visited changed in the last 300 years or so. Unfortunately I didn’t come across a good figure. We can intuitively say that the number is continuously increasing as travelling is becoming safer and cheaper.

I cannot express how living in other countries, communicating with people from other cultures can broaden one’s life perspective. By 30, I have spent much more time abroad than my whole family combined, and I think that the time we spend abroad will continue to increase for future generations. The mobile revolution is one of the key reasons why this is the case.

As someone who was living in Japan with a very elementary level of Japanese speaking ability, it amazes me how people survived before Google Maps, Translate, and many others apps that make traveling so much easier today. From one perspective, the dependence on mobile technology is pathetic (I would have preferred if I had enough time to learn Japanese), but on the other hand it surely makes it easier for people to explore foreign cultures.


From my own personal observation, I wasn’t that much into mobile technology when I was living in the UK, maybe because I did not needed it as much. However, in Japan, my smartphone became one of my most prized possessions, as it connected me to the rest of the world and made it convenient for me to interact with my surroundings (even the simple task of checking the ingredients in a product, which would otherwise be impossible if Google Translate did not exist).

I believe that this convenience of travelling and staying connected to the rest of the world will bring about another positive transformation, although this may not happen during our lifetime. It is highly likely that someday, as more people interact and connect with foreign cultures, borders between countries will start to …read more

Source:: android authority


WhatsApp adds voice mail, new font style in latest beta

By Bogdan Petrovan


The hugely popular WhatsApp is slowing evolving into a fully-featured messaging service. The latest additions in terms of functionality, now rolling out to the beta version of the app, are a brand new voicemail feature and the ability to use monospace text formatting.

We first heard about voicemail and call-back support in WhatsApp a few months ago, when text related to the features showed up in translation requests.

Now the feature is going live for beta users. Here’s how it works: if you call someone on WhatsApp and the other person doesn’t pick up or declines the call, you will see a screen that lets you quickly call back or record and send a voice message. The ability to send voice messages isn’t new, but now WhatsApp is integrating it in the calling interface, bringing the app closer to the way a conventional phone call works.

Next, WhatsApp is adding a new text formatting option, monospace text. We’re not sure there are lots of users who were eagerly anticipating this new text style, but the trick to activate it is to add three accent symbols (`) before the text. Monospace joins bold, italic, and strikethrough in the panoply of formatting options offered by WhatsApp.

The WhatsApp beta program is hosted in the Play Store, and you can join it from here. Let us know what you think of the new features.

…read more

Source:: android authority


Samsung says it fixed the water resistance problem of the Galaxy S7 Active

By Team AA

Samsung Galaxy S7 Active hands on 182

If you’re a Galaxy S7 Active owner and the handset’s recent failed Consumer Reports water resistance test has been giving you sleepless nights, then this piece of news should make you feel better.

Samsung claims to have fixed a manufacturing defect in the Galaxy S7 Active that made some handsets unable to sustain water damage despite their IP68 certification. The South Korean handset maker has assured that all Galaxy S7 Active units now being shipped would be problem-free.

Samsung is offering the Galaxy S7 Active to AT&T customers in the US and its marketing materials clearly state that the phone features IP68 certification, just like its siblings, the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge. This means that apart from being dust-resistant, the Galaxy S7 Active should be able to survive immersion in up to 5 feet of water for up to 30 minutes, as advertised by the company.

But earlier this month, when Consumer Reports placed two Galaxy S7 Active units in a water tank pressurized to 2.12 pounds-per-square-inch, the equivalent of less than five feet of water, for 30 minutes, both units failed the test and came out with a flickering screen and moisture inside. On the other hand, the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge easily passed the test.

Samsung responded to the test results with a press release stating that the Galaxy S7 Active was IP68 certified and its standard limited warranty still applied.

Samsung has now issued a statement to Consumer Reports, claiming that it has detected and fixed a manufacturing problem responsible for the Galaxy S7’s failure in underwater conditions. As per Consumer Reports, citing Samsung PR Philip Berne:

All Galaxy S7 Active phones are manufactured in the same facility in Asia. “We found a problem in the production line that we were able to correct,” he said. He declined to provide details. Phones now being shipped should be problem-free, according to Berne. However, to his knowledge, Galaxy S7 Active devices already in stores were not being removed from inventory.

Samsung has earlier agreed to replace any water-damaged S7 Active unit under its limited warranty.

Has your Galaxy S7 Active been facing any water-resistance problems? Let us know in the comments below!

…read more

Source:: android authority


Tiny Archers brings a fresh take on the castle-defense genre

By Brian Reigh


Play Store

If you’re missing Angry Birds‘ drag and release gameplay, 1DER Entertainment’s new game Tiny Archers might interest you. Available for free in the Play Store, the game’s primary objective is to protect your tower from evil goblins by shooting arrows and eliminating them. And I must say, it’s quite addicting.

best escape games for androidSee also: 15 best Android games of 2016175

As 1DER Entertainment lists, Tiny Archers lets you “Discover fantastic characters, fight multiple enemies, unlock magic arrows and surprising abilities.”

The game ultimately offers three characters, but in the beginning, you are limited to only one option: Adam the human. Once you successfully defeat your enemies with Adam, you can move on to Lily the fairy and Narin the dwarf.

The game guides you step by step, explaining how to defend your town from your enemies and even offers an option to hide blood when killing goblins. Essentially, the game boils down to how effectively you can aim your limited amount of arrows at the charging monsters.

After each mission, you receive gems which can be used to create armor or to activate special powers such as pouring melting tar on a horde of goblins. As you move up, the number of enemies increases, and gargantuan trolls start to appear!

What happens when you run out of arrows? Fear not, for you can use your gems to buy more. Be careful, though, because once you are out of arrows and gems, goblins will start to climb up the tower and push you off.

Tiny Archers is a straightforward but fun game. While the aiming is simple and resembles Angry Birds, it doesn’t get too repetitive thanks to the beautifully detailed artwork and perspective changes.

For each mission, your point of view tilts slightly, and goblins use a different route to attack. This seemingly trivial variation makes a significant difference when playing the game.

If your phone is running on Android 4.1 or higher, head over to the Play Store to become a Tiny Archer and start defending your tower from evil goblins!

Download on Play Store

If you have already downloaded Tiny Archers, let us know what you like about the game in the comments below!

…read more

Source:: android authority


Augmented Reality – Everything you need to know

By Alex Mullis


Augmented reality is not a new technology, but widespread consumer use has not been seen, at least not until Pokemon GO. As the Pokemon phenomena has demonstrated, AR has a lot of potential. Besides gaming, Google’s Tango and Microsoft’s HoloLens are other technologies at the forefront of AR. So what is AR? How does it work? And how can you write AR apps? Let’s find out.

What is augmented reality?

Let’s break down the term “augmented reality” for a minute. “Augmented” means to make something more complex by adding something to it. “Reality” is known as the state of things as they actually exist.

In the image at the beginning of this article, the scene is being augmented by adding the Android Authority logo to the scene on top of the sunglass case. Keep in mind that augmented reality is not limited to just images, sound and other sensory enhancements are also possible.

A good example of a form of augmented reality we experience the most is the superimposed first down line during football games. The military also uses augmented reality for its ground troops using a device similar to Microsoft’s HoloLens. But how does it actually work?

How does augmented reality work?

Explicitly focusing on smartphones as a specific example, AR works by having an app that searches for a marker, usually a black and white barcode or a user defined one (more detail in the Unity section). Once the marker is found, a 3D object is then superimposed on the marker. Using the phone’s camera to track the relative position of the device and the marker, the user is able to walk around the marker and view the 3D object at all angles. This takes a lot of horsepower, as the phone needs to track its position as well as the markers position so the 3D object looks correct.
Pokemon Go No AR Catch screen 2
Games like Pokemon Go work slightly differently in the way that AR is used. Instead of using a physical placeholder with an object being rendered on top of it, Pokemon Go just displays a 3D object on top of a camera view with some depth tricks. Using this method, Pokemon GO does not have the ability to walk around the Pokemon as you can with the Android Authority logo in the example. In fact, there is no distance tracking involved here, you can freely walk around and the Pokemon will still appear the same distance from you, as long as you are facing the right direction. This may end up being a more common way augmented reality is used in the mobile space, as it does not require physical objects to be placed around the real world.

Smartphones are currently only capable of basic AR functionality at the moment, with more practical uses being more for dedicated devices like the Microsoft HoloLens, known as Heads Up Displays (HUDs).

On mobile, Google has been hard at work on Tango. This is different than standard augmented reality on mobile since Tango has specific hardware to enhance the experience. Tango uses computer vision to track motion, have depth perception and learn the area around you for self correcting features. Tango’s hardware includes a standard camera, a fisheye motion sensing camera and a depth sensor. The first consumer device with Tango was announced last month from Lenovo and looks very promising from a hardware standpoint.

Ways to develop for AR

There are a few ways to develop augmented reality apps, including native development in Android Studio to using engines like Unity. This depends on what SDK you choose to use. Here are a few AR SDKs that are available today:

  • Vuforia – Developed by Qualcomm, this SDK supports Android and iOS with Unity support. This what we will be using in the next section when developing an AR app for Android. This SDK supports multiple targets at a time whether they are images or English text, Smart Terrain (which allows for the reconstruction of the physical world), and local and cloud databases.
  • ARLab – More than just a SDK, ARLab also has a 3D engine that can be used to make AR apps. ARLab is not free, and offers a few different pricing options depending on what features you want to incorporate into your app. ARLab includes virtual buttons, image tracking and image matching. Pricing for ARLab can be found here.
  • DroidAR – DroidAR is an open source AR SDK that supports image tracking and markers as well as location based AR. If open source is your thing, give DroidAR a try. Keep in mind that there is no Unity plugin if that is something that you are looking for, and as the name suggests, Android is the only supported operating system.

Using Unity for AR development

While native development is possible for AR development, it is just as easy to use Unity to make your app. First things first, download Unity. Go through the necessary steps and get Unity installed. Once installed, open Unity and create a new project, make sure “3D’ is selected. Once open, download the Vuforia SDK and samples. Note that you do not need to import the SDK file if you open a sample project, as they include all of the files needed.

Once downloaded, extract the zip files and put the contents in a safe location that you will remember. Go back to Unity and click File>Open Scene. For this article we will be focusing on the “User defined targets” file. Click on this file to open the project. When the file is open, go to the Scenes folder in the content viewer in the bottom middle, there should be four scenes.

Open the last scene labeled “Vuforia-3-UserDefinedTargets”, this will enable …read more

Source:: android authority


OPPO to announce the F1s on August 3

By Kris Carlon


Remember the OPPO F1 from CES this year? The self-proclaimed “selfie expert”? Well, there’s about to be a new expert in town, when the OPPO F1s gets unveiled on August 3. OPPO claims the F1s will be one of its “core products for the second half of 2016” – indicating just how successful the F1 line has already been for the company.

There’s nothing much to say about the OPPO F1s specs yet but OPPO is promising the F1s will “carry on the F1’s legacy of superb photography, sleek design and snappy performance, while adding new features and taking others to new heights”. The F1s will apparently deliver the “ultimate experience,” so there’s that to look forward to.

Step up your selfie game! The all new #SelfieExpert #OPPOF1s is on the way. Mark your date for 3rd of august.

— OPPO Mobile India (@oppomobileindia) July 18, 2016

The response to the camera-centric F1 has been positive to say the least, so upping the ante in a mid-year upgrade does kind of make sense for OPPO. But keep in mind OPPO already released the F1 Plus just a few months ago – the F1s will be the third F1 in six months. While this may seem a little excessive, the F1 has proven its viability already.

According to OPPO, the F1 was the best-selling smartphone in the $225-300 price range in multiple countries this May, including India, Vietnam and Indonesia, and was the second most popular device in a few other markets. While we’ve seen several other selfie-centric phones in the past, OPPO’s success with the F1 is likely down to its impressive price point.

What do you think about OPPO’s F1 strategy? How important are selfies to you?

…read more

Source:: android authority


ZTE reveals 6-inch ZMAX PRO with 13MP camera, for just $99

By Brian Reigh

ZTE ZMAX Pro hands on 21

ZTE’s ZMAX series has always been about offering decent specs for an affordable price, and the ZMAX PRO is no exception. For just $99, the ZMAX PRO will be available on MetroPCS with a 6” FHD screen, a 13MP rear camera, and a fingerprint reader mounted on the back.

ZTE-1See also: Rumor: ZTE Zmax Pro coming to T-Mobile bigger and stronger18

ZMAX PRO will be available for purchase at MetroPCS in the US for just $99 after instant rebate. According to the official press release, ZMAX PRO is yet another effort from ZTE to give consumers “what they want, value, and use at a pace in which they ask for it.”

Lixin Cheng, chairman and CEO of ZTE USA said in the press release:

ZTE drives innovation that impacts the daily lives of U.S. consumers by delivering innovation to the mid-tier segment, as seen in the affordable ZMAX PRO that features the latest technology for less than $100.

ZMAX PRO measures 165.1 x 83.8 x 8.89 mm and weighs 175 grams. The big size is partially due to its juicy 3,400 mAh battery, which according to the official specs, should last up to 400 hours of standby time and up to 25 hours of talk time. It will support fast-charging through a USB Type C cable.

Inside, ZMAX PRO is powered by a 1.5GHz octa-core Snapdragon 617 chipset with 2GB of RAM and 32GB of storage. There will even be a microSD slot, which will give you up to additional 128GB of storage.

On the back of the ZMAX PRO are the 13MP main camera and a fingerprint scanner right below, and for the selfie-inclined, the 5MP front camera should be able to snap photos with lots of detail.

ZMAX PRO will land on MetroPCS on August 1, and for those who pre-register for the phone by July 31st will receive a free lather case by mail. If you are looking to snag up a $99 phablet with decent specs, pre-orders start this Friday here.

With the mid-range market becoming more and more competitive and with affordable high-end phones like the OnePlus 3, it would be interesting to see how the ZMAX PRO fares in the US.

Do you think $99 is great value for its specs? Is the ZMAX PRO a device you would be interested in? Let us know in the comments below!

Show Press Release

ZTE Defies Expectations with the $99.00 ZMAX PRO Phone Arriving at MetroPCS on August 1

ZTE delivers record-breaking value once again with premium specs in the affordable ZMAX PRO

RICHARDSON, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–ZTE USA, the fourth largest smartphone supplier in the U.S. and second largest in the no-contract market, * today announced the availability of the next generation of the ZMAX series, the ZMAX PRO, at MetroPCS for the affordable price of $99.00 after instant rebate. The ZMAX PRO breaks barriers as the first U.S. carrier supported phone under $100.00 that features a fingerprint sensor, and its 3400 mAh battery, 13MP and 5MP cameras, up to 32GB of internal storage, and a big, beautiful 6-inch FHD display provides unmatched value for consumers. To get the hottest deal of the summer visit MetroPCS in store or online

“ZTE drives innovation that impacts the daily lives of U.S. consumers by delivering innovation to the mid-tier segment, as seen in the affordable ZMAX PRO that features the latest technology for less than $100,” said Lixin Cheng, chairman and CEO of ZTE USA. “First, we delivered the ZMAX, the largest phablet under $200 and made it available on T-Mobile. Now, we are delivering a premium fingerprint sensor on the ZMAX PRO with MetroPCS. We continue giving consumers what they want, value, and use at a pace in which they ask for it.”

ZTE doesn’t sacrifice quality, features, or service – and neither should you. Get the premium experience you deserve at a fraction of the price.

Premium Technology

One of the most accurate and responsive fingerprint sensors available today
3400mAh embedded battery that lasts all day
6-inch display that is both big and beautiful
13MP rear-camera captures 1080p video and 5MP front-camera takes perfect selfies
32GB of internal storage that can be expanded up to 128GB with a microSD card providing more than enough room for photos, videos and music
For full list of phone specifications and features visit

Quality Hardware

ZTE phones are quality tested under the most stringent conditions in world-class lab facilities. ZTE phones and mobile devices have been running on America’s fastest carrier networks since it launched its first phone with MetroPCS in 2007.

*Strategy Analytics, Q1 2016

…read more

Source:: android authority


Pretend you’re an Olympian by ordering this $840 Galaxy S7 Edge limited edition

By Bogdan Petrovan

Hey you there, on the couch. You too can feel like an Olympic athlete, and you won’t even need to exercise any muscles besides those in your fingers. Just head over to to buy the new “Galaxy S7 Edge Olympic Games Limited Edition,” available today for a lofty $840.

The Olympic-themed Galaxy S7 Edge features accents in the colors of the Olympic circles and custom themes and wallpapers that will make you feel like you’re in Rio.

12,500 athletes attending the Summer Games in Brazil will receive the Galaxy S7 Edge Olympic Games Limited Edition as a gift. But you don’t need to be a sporting god in order to have it. Exactly 2016 units of the S7 Edge Olympic edition will be sold in each of the select countries where Samsung is making the device available, including Brazil, the United States, China, Germany and Korea.

In the US, Best Buy has the Galaxy S7 Edge Olympic Games Limited Edition (32GB unlocked) on sale for $840. That’s $50 more than the regular unlocked model, but you do get a limited edition phone, plus a custom carrying pouch. Unlike the all-black Batman-themed Injustice edition, the Olympic edition does not come bundled with a VR headset.

Buy on Best Buy

Anyone here tempted by this phone?

…read more

Source:: android authority


Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge International Giveaway!

By Derek Scott


Welcome to the Sunday Giveaway, the place where we giveaway a new Android phone or tablet each and every Sunday!

A big congratulations to last week’s winner of the Nexus 6P Giveaway: Shane R. (Canada). Enjoy your new Nexus 6P!

This week we are giving away a brand new Galaxy S7 Edge courtesy of DU Battery Saver.

Wishing you could get a bit more life out of your phone in between charges? DU battery Saver is a free app designed to help you make the most out of your phone’s battery. The app not only can detect battery-hungry apps that are running in the background, and give you the tools to close them, it also has a variety of different power management modes baked in. Using Du’s “Optimize” feature, the app will even scan your phone and will present you with further options on how you could potentially enhance your battery life. You can learn more about Du Battery Saver, as well as the pro version with extra features, here.

How to enter the giveaway

How do you cool your phone down when it overheats? Tweet us stories, photos, and suggestions. The funnier and more creative, the better. Use hashtag #DUCoolYourPhone on Twitter to earn 5 tickets into the giveaway. You can also earn extra tickets by following BaiduMobile on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, downloading DU Battery Saver and sharing the giveaway with your friends.

Enter giveaway
Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge International Giveaway!

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  • The giveaway is an international giveaway (Except when we can not ship to your Country.)
  • If we can not ship to your country, you will be compensated with an online gift card of equal MSRP value to the prize.
  • We are not responsible for lost shipments.
  • You must be age of majority in your Country of residence.
  • We are not responsible for any duties or import fees that you may incur.
  • Only 1 entry per person, do not enter multiple email addresses. We will verify all winners and if we detect multiple email addresses by the same person you will not be eligible to win.
  • We reserve all rights to make any changes to this giveaway.
  • This giveaway is operated by AndroidAuthority.
  • The prize will ship when it is available to purchase.

…read more

Source:: android authority