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NVIDIA announces 12 of SHIELDsmas with deals on Shield games

NVIDIA

To celebrate Christmas in grand fashion, #NVIDIA has announced its new promotion called 12 Days of SHIELDmas, which essentially gives incredible discounts on some of the SHIELD games that are sold by the company.

These games are compatible with all of the SHIELD devices that are sold in the market today. The discounted content can be found on the SHIELD Hub or GeForce Now. Interestingly, the company is also discounting other content that is available for non-Tegra devices, so that users without a Tegra device don’t miss out on these deals.

The deals will officially start tomorrow (24 December) and will last until the 4th of January, living true to its name. Below are the titles that will be discounted as part of this newly announced promotion:

Shield Android TV titles:

SHIELD Hub Games for non-Tegra devices (December 22-29)

Source: NVIDIA

Via: Droid Life

Ten last-minute Christmas gift ideas for Android enthusiasts

The clock is ticking, time has almost run out on your Christmas shopping, but not just yet. The big online retailers, most notably Amazon, still give their word you’ll pull off looking like a hero again in the eleventh hour, and as long as you put your orders in by Sunday, you should be totally safe.

christmas_android

Since it’s decision time, and every second counts, you need clear eyes, full hearts and a clear mind to pick the absolute best gadgets for the wife, kids, parents and that uncle you only catch up with every Turkey Day and X-mas.

Sticking to a budget is another major concern, but instead of you worrying about everything, we’ll take over and vouch for ten sweet Android contraptions sure to get you out of trouble, and earn you a new one-year pass for… anything. Play your cards right now, and you could afford to stay out past midnight with the guys, or even forget her birthday. Here we go:

LG G3

LG-G3

The good: Exquisite display, large and high-res, virtually no bezels, premium build materials, plenty of muscle to drive your gaming, browsing and multimedia needs, and incredibly cheap… considering.

The bad: Um… it doesn’t cook dinner? It’s all we can think of right now, but if you give us a moment, we’ll come up with a flaw or two. There has to be something.

Perfect for: Wives, girlfriends, sons, daughters, husbands, brothers, fathers, mothers, cousins, uncles, best friends, co-workers and pretty much any living, breathing, tech-savvy being with good taste.

Motorola Moto G (second generation)

Moto G 2014

The good: Large and decently punchy for the money, running up-to-date stock Android for hardcore purists, and touting a far superior rear camera to the one on the first-gen.

The bad: Lackluster design, less than stellar battery life, no CDMA compatibility for Verizon and Sprint activations, no subsidy option for people looking to save even more money.

Perfect for: First-time smartphone users, students, kids in general, and perhaps even your hip, Candy Crush-addicted aunt.

HTC Desire 510

HTC-Desire-510

The good: Stylish and fashionable (available in black and blue hues), it doesn’t require a contract yet it’s extremely cheap, beefed-up by a massive 2,100 mAh battery.

The bad: Cringe worthy 4.7-inch 854 x 480 pix res screen, mediocre 5 MP rear camera, sub-par VGA front snapper.

Perfect for: Independent youngsters that don’t like to be tied up to a carrier agreement… and have something else to cover their selfie needs.

Sharp Aquos Crystal

aquos_crystal

The good: One-of-a-kind design, best screen to body size ratio courtesy of an innovative edge-to-edge aesthetical approach, decently well-equipped for the price range, with quad-core Snapdragon 400 power, 1.5 GB RAM and 2,040 mAh battery, plus Harman Kardon sound and Clari-Fi audio improving technology.

The bad: It’s manufactured by a no-name company as far as most Americans are concerned, so you might be skeptical about the build quality.

Perfect for: Rebels, audiophiles, hipsters (the good kind), and those who like to always feel young and unique.

Google Nexus 9

Nexus 9

The good: Everything.

The bad: Nothing.

Perfect for: Everyone. Anyone. Anyone that doesn’t think the tablet world starts and ends with iPads, that is, and is ready to admit the large-screen Android ecosystem, while not ideal, is continuously evolving.

Amazon Fire HD 6

kindle-fire-hd-6

The good: Probably the cheapest tab built by a “household” name in the business, yet quad-core-packing, unlimited cloud storage-offering, and equipped with dual cameras, as well as a not-so-horrible 1,280 x 800 pix res display.

The bad: Too dependent on the Amazon Appstore and Amazon services in general, running an Android fork with no Google Play access, and offering no cellular connectivity despite the small footprint.

Perfect for: Kindle e-reader veterans seeking extra productivity.

Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7.0

Galaxy-Tab4-7.0

The good: Compact, fairly slim, pocketable and affordable, running Android 4.4 KitKat with 5.0 Lollipop on the way, and sold with $300 worth of free content and services, Dropbox storage and SiriusXM subscription included.

The bad: It’s probably not the sturdiest tablet in the world, and it’s surely not the fastest, courtesy of a middling quad-core Marvell PXA1088 processor.

Perfect for: Bargain hunters, budget-restricted Samsung fans, and those who can’t afford the Nexus 9 but feel the Fire HD 6 is too small or just not productive enough.

Acer CB5 Chromebook 13

Acer Chromebook 13

The good: It doesn’t run Android, but Chrome OS is like Android for laptops; it offers a degree of productivity no tablet can be capable of, no matter how cool their external keyboard accessories; it’s Full HD, quad-core Tegra K1-powered, and rated at 11 hours of battery life on a single charge.

The bad: Chrome OS is definitely on the rise, but it’s still no genuine Windows threat; network connectivity isn’t a commodity, it’s a necessity.

Perfect for: Hip students always connected to the web and preoccupied with doing homework at least as much as blowing up evil green beings in “Alien: Isolation”.

Jawbone Up 24

jawbone-up24

The good: Again, this doesn’t technically run Android, but it’s Android-compatible, and as we already explained, it’s one of the best all-around fitness trackers. Probably the best in its price range, and the unusual design certainly helps the Up 24 stand out from the large crowd of low-cost, basic wearable devices. The battery life is exceptional, the number of sensors packed… respectable, and the color selection should cover its most playful and serious prospective customers.

The bad: It’s not as fancy as other activity trackers, doesn’t sport a screen or any sort of information displaying system.

Perfect for: Amateur athletes, fashionistas, people looking to lose weight or just stay in shape.

Motorola Moto 360

motorola-moto-360

The good: It’s hands down the best Android smartwatch around, it can be elegant or playful, depending on the band choice, it runs the newest iteration of Android Wear, and it’s as productive and knowledgeable as smartwatches get these days.

The bad: The processor is slightly outdated, and battery life is somewhat patchy, albeit not as bad as back in the day.

Perfect for: Early wearable adopters who deserve all the best the fledgling technology can offer.

That’s a wrap, boys and girls, and, in the name of the entire Droid Guy team, I’d like to wish you a fun last-minute Christmas shopping experience, and happy holidays. May whatever you end up gifting those close to you come from the heart.

Top 8 Budget Tablets to look for this Holiday Season

Android 5.0.1

Android 5.0.1

Are you looking to pick up a tablet as a gift this holiday season, but cannot afford anything super expensive? Well, there are plenty of Android tablets out there available that fit those on a low-budget! You do not have to spend a whole lot of money to get a decent tablet either–companies like Google have showed us this. $149 can get you an earlier model of the Nexus 7, but still give you something really nice to play around with.

With all of that said, we have put together a list of the top 8 budget tablets to look for this holiday season. There’s only 13 days left until Christmas, so I suggest acting fast!

1. Dell Venue 7

Dell Venue 7 and 8 Tabs

This is a lesser known tablet, but still a decent performer for the price you are getting it at. The Dell Venue 7 is obviously rocking a 7-inch screen at a resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels. It is sporting a pixel density of 216ppi. In all honesty, the display does not look that great, but that is not what Dell is going for here. They are looking to give you a affordable tablet, which means they will not be going all out like you would find on the newest model of the Nexus 7 or iPad Air.

However, for $149, the processing package is actually really good, in terms of value. You get 2GB of RAM, and a dual core Intel Atom Z2560 processor, clocked in at 1.6GHz. In most cases, you will not be doing much more than Internet browsing, Facebook, or the occasional YouTube video, so this processing package works just great for the Dell Venue 7. In all honesty, it actually runs pretty fast, albeit I did notice the bootup took a bit longer than you would find on most tablets, but again, that is to be expected in something like this.

Really, this tablet brings a usable experience to the tablet at an affordable price. In a world where mobile devices are becoming the norm, companies want everyone to be able to afford one, for obvious reasons. If you are interested in this little guy, you can pick up the Dell Venue 7 from Amazon for $137, which is a bit cheaper than the sticker price.

2. Amazon Fire HD 6

Amazon Kindle Fire HDX

The Amazon Fire HD 6 released just this year in September, and offers a great a package for a low, low price. In terms of the display, you get a smaller than average 6 inch screen, with a resolution of 1280 x 800. You also get a pixel density of 252ppi, which is not a whole lot higher than the Dell Venue 7, but still a nice increase. Overall, the display package Amazon has put into the Fire HD 6 is really nice for what you are getting. I found everything to be quite crisp, and video or movie quality was not a problem.

As for the processing package, you get two dual core processors, one clocked in at 1.6GHz, and another at 1.2GHz. Complimenting that, you get 1GB of RAM, and 8 or 16GB options for storage. Overall, it is a nice processing package. The only dissapointment with this tablet is that you do not have access to the Google Play Store, which puts a lot of restrictions on what you can do with this little performer. You will not be able to find a lot of the popular apps that are on the Google Play Store in the Amazon AppStore, as Amazon just does not have as good as an ecosystem as Apple or Google available to you.

Either way, for $99, you really cannot say no this little guy. It will last you a few years, providing you with countless hours of entertainment and web browsing. If you are interested, you can pick it up from Amazon for $99, and possibly even lower if Amazon offers another deal.

3. Nexus 7 (2013)

Nexus-7-2013

This tablet, the Nexus 7 (2013), is a personal favorite of mine. I purchased it as soon as it launched, and have enjoyed it ever since. Google put together a really good package in this model at a very cheap price. In it, you have your standard 7-inch slate, rocking a resolution of 1920 x 1200. You also get a pixel density of a whopping 323ppi, which is quite a leap from the past two tablets we have on our list. Just about everything looks phenomenal on this tablet, from web surfing to all sorts of media. Video plays and looks beautiful, music can be a little on the quiet side, but not too bad. In web surfing, the text is crisp and easy to read. It is all sorts of awesome in this tablet.

Under the hood, you get a Qualcomm quad core Snapdragon S4 Pro, clocked in at 1.5GHz. With it, you get your standard 2GBs of RAM, and an Adreno 320 GPU. As per the norm, you have the choice of 16GB or 32GB options for storage. However, you do not have a microSD card slot to expand it any further than that. It has a 5-megapixel sensor strapped on the back of it, and it comes with Android 4.3, is upgradable to Android 4.4 KitKat, and will, in the future, be upgradeable to Android 5.0 Lollipop.

If you’re interested in picking up this guy, Amazon currently has the 16GB model on sale, although the 32GB option is a bit more on the pricier side, but recommended if you can spare the extra cash. Unfortunately, Google is not selling this guy on the Google Play Store anymore, so really, Amazon and brick-and-mortar retailers are your only option here.

4. LG G Pad 7.0

gpad7att

This one is another favorite of mine. I was able to pick one of these up for a penny on a new two-year contract when picking up my LG G3. You have your standard 7-inch display, touting a resolution of 1280 by 800, and it is sporting a pixel density of 216ppi. In all honesty, this screen really is not all that bad. After using a lot of the higher-end tech, you can definitely notice a difference, but if you are not looking for the ultimate entertainment package, LG’s G Pad 7.0 will suit you just fine. Text is sharp and easy to read, video looks decent, and in all honesty, nothing really looks choppy on this little guy.

As for the performance package, you get a Qualcomm quad core Snapdragon 400 CPU, clocked in at 1.2GHz. With it, you get 1GB of RAM, and a Adreno 305 GPU. It is not a bad processing package for what you are going to use it for. With this tablet, most people are just going to be using it for everyday browsing, a few games, and YouTube occasionally–a possible laptop replacement, maybe? For that, this really is not a bad tablet.

So, how can you pick up this little guy? Well, if you plan on picking up an LG G3 or G2, you can get this guy for a penny on a new two year contract through AT&T. That deal ends in January, so you have a little time after Christmas to be able to pick it up. If you are looking to avoid the contracts, Amazon is obviously your best option.

5. ASUS MeMo Pad 8

MeMOPad 8

Made by ASUS, this is yet another great tablet for those on a budget. You get the 8 inch display, sporting a resolution of 1280 x 800, and a pixel density of 189ppi. It is obviously a bigger display than our last four entries, but with a lower pixel density, which really is not all that great. However, if you are not looking for a big entertainment package, this is yet another tablet that will serve you just fine. High definition video could look a lot better, but again, it is not a garbage display package either. You will be able to easily accomplish your everyday tasks with the ASUS MeMO Pad 8.

In terms of a processing package, we have a quad core 1.6GHz Cortex A9 processor, and 1GB of RAM. Certainly a better processing package than you would find in a lot of low-end tablets. Again, this is not a high-end behemoth, but something that will certainly get you through your everyday tasks.

If you are interested in picking this little performer up this holiday season, you can do so straight from Amazon, who is actually running a really good deal on the device right now. You can get all of this for a mere $149, which is a whopping 25 percent off of the sticker price.

6. Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7.0

samsung-galaxy-tab-3-7-inch-review-3

Right next to Google and Asus’ Nexus 7 (2013), the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 is easily your next best option, again, if you have a bit more cash to spare. Again, you get your standard 7 inch display, touting the 1280 x 800 resolution. In addition to that, you get a pixel density of 216ppi. All in all, pretty standard for a lower budget tablet. As usual, video, games, and web surfing all look decent. Unfortunately, this device is not equipped with the Super AMOLED display, so those that are looking for deeper and more vibrant colors that Samsung has become known for will be a tad disappointed.

Under the hood, we have a great processing package. The Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 is equipped with a quad core 1.2GHz processor, and 1.5GB of RAM. You have your standard 8 and 16GB options for this tablet. However, that storage can be expanded up to 32GB via a microSD card slot, which is always handy to have around, especially if you are big on photography.

You can pick up this tablet straight from Amazon at a fairly cheap price, and if you are looking to get a tad bit better of a tablet than this, Samsung offers a beefier 10-inch tablet of the same family.

7. Lenovo IdeaPad A1

ideapadA1

This tablet released a few years back, and in terms of cost savings, this one is probably your best bet. Of course, you get your standard 7-inch tablet, but instead of the standard 1280 x 800 resolution, you get a lesser 1024 x 600 resolution. Coming with that, you also get a mere 170ppi, which certainly is not worth writing home about. Again, with a tablet like this, all you really care about is that it can perform basic tasks like web surfing or Facebook, and it is able to accomplish just that.

Under the hood, you get a 1GHz Cortex A8 processor, 512MB of RAM, and a 16GB storage options, with capabilities of expanding up to 32GB via a microSD card. It honestly is not a bad performer, but probably the worst thing about this tablet is that it only runs Android 2.3 Gingerbread, so you will not get the better looking UI or better features in general.

If you are interested in picking up the Lenovo IdeaPad A1 this holiday season, you can do straight from Amazon on the cheap. Just make sure to see if you are able to swing something a bit pricier, as you will not regret it over this little guy.

8.  Barnes and Noble Nook HD+

nookhd-hd+

Another device that I would consider is one of the Barnes and Noble’s older Nook tablets. Coming in at 9-inches, you get a decent IPS LCD display, touting a resolution of a whopping 1920 x 1280 pixels. With it, it sports a pixel density of 256ppi. All in all, this is probably one of the best options in terms of a entertainment package on this list. Obviously it is a bit pricier than others, but well worth the buy. Text is sharp and easy to read, video plays phenomenally, and games generally look good.

Under the hood, we have a TI OMAP4470 dual core 1.5GHz processor, 1 gig of RAM and a PowerVR SGX544 graphics CPU. The tablet has a maximum storage of 16GB, 13GB of which the user is able to take advantage of. However, there is a microSD card slot, allowing up to an additional 64GB. One reason why I really like this tablet is because Barnes and Noble has recently put up support for the Google Play Store, so the options of this tablet has expanded greatly.

It is well worth the buy. If you are interested, you can pick it up from Amazon on the cheap!

Conclusion

And that wraps up our top eight budget tablets list! All of these are well under $200, and all perform very well for how much you are purchasing them for. Just remember, you will need to act fast if you are buying straight through Amazon, as customers only have four days left to order if they want their package to arrive before Christmas. After that four days is up, you might be giving your family and friends some “belated” Christmas presents.

What do you think of the tablets on our list? Do you have a favorite budget tablet? Be sure to let us know in the comments, and be sure to stay tuned to The Droid Guy as we will have plenty more deal articles coming up for you this holiday season!

6 reasons why the Moto X is the best gift this holiday season

Motorola Deal

Motorola Deal

The Moto X was released in last August, and I finally got my hands on one this past February. And no way was I getting the classic black or white, with the phenomenal design tools they offer for you to create your own. Since February, I have fallen in love with this phone! I can’t think of a better gift this Christmas season for your techno-savvy friends and family. Here’s six reasons why.

1. The amazing custom-designing capablilties

On https://www.motorola.com/us/motomaker, you can create your own phone, personalized for your business, personal, and gifting technology needs.

5ReasonsWhyWeLoveTheMotoX1.png

You can tailor the colors to mimic your favorite sports teams, charities, or personal preferences. For example, you can pick out some crazy combination like pink and silver or turquoise and black!  For the classy one in the family, you can also choose from a variety of amazing wood and leather backs. This, of course, adds to the price a little more than the regular design options, but well worth the small increase, in my opinion.

The customization does not end there, though! You can choose to grab a clear-back case to show off your design to the world, and you can choose your memory between the standard 16 GB or 32 GB. To top it all off, you can get it engraved–with no extra charge–for that special someone, and create a phrase to pop up whenever the recipient powers up their phone. However, just be careful in your spelling, because as far as I know, there is no possible way to change it on your own.

Do not tell me I am the only one who gets a gift for someone else and then ends up getting one for me. This is perfect for that! With this diverse set of design tools, your recipient will be none the wiser.

2. Gorilla Glass

Let me start out by being honest and saying that, folks, I have eaten the cookies and have drank the koolaid on both sides: Apple and Android. I’m not against cases like the OtterBox, but I never seem to have one in use when I drop my phone. I cannot even tell you how many times I dropped my Apple device, but without fail, each time, the screen shattered and cracked into 5,000 little pieces. They may be all the rage. They may be the “best gift of the year.” They may be exactly what your twelve-year-old has been begging you for over the past year, but they are not worth it.

My Moto X has slipped from my fingers far more than I care to admit, and not on carpeted flooring. Never once has the screen cracked, and even the color-coated backing has no blatantly noticeable scratches. The Moto X is durable! If your wife is in need of a phone that she will feel safe with the 3-year-old playing on, or if you’re just looking for a heavy-duty phone for yourself, look no further. Whether you are out plowing a field in Alabama, managing a business from the towers of New York City, or trying to get your little one to sit still for more than twenty seconds, your Moto X is going to make it out alive without more than a scratch.

3. The Camera

CameraScreenshot3.png

We all have that one friend who is obsessed with taking food pictures, selfies, and not losing a single memory by fail of not pulling out the camera. I was blown away with the camera features when I received my Moto X. This phone is perfect for family life and famous Instagrammers alike. Let me tell you why.

  • The flip-to-camera technology.

You’re at the ballet recital and the room is dark. The stage is lit. Your daughter is about to gracefully fly through the air, and your camera is taking forever to boot up. Moto X in hand, flip your wrist twice, and it’s ready for memory-capturing action. This camera removes the hurdle standing between memories and capturing them. In a matter of two seconds, you twist your wrist, tap the screen, and you’ve captured the ballet recital to send to all your friends and family who weren’t able to be there. If you’re gifting yourself a Moto X for Christmas, your parents in Florida won’t have to miss their grandkids’ joy of ripping open their gifts.

  • Tap the screen anywhere.

I cannot stand it when I have my phone in the perfect position and then I can’t reach the dang button. Tap your finger anywhere on this screen, and your moment is captured. Like I said, it eats up the time between the memories and capturing them.

  • HDR, Flash, Touch Control & Exposure, HD & SloMo Video, Panoramic, Timer, and Location, all at your fingertips.

CameraScreenshot1.png

This wheel? It spins. And whatever you tap on, it explains to you how it works. Never heard of HDR in your entire life? It’ll tell you. The Moto X makes getting adapted to a new phone an absolute breeze with tutorials for everything, which makes it perfect for gifting. I’ll never forget the time I got my great-grandpa to play Angry Birds on my phone. Talk about memories! Maybe you want to introduce your grandpa to new technology this holiday season. If so, this is the phone for him! It doesn’t get easier than this.

4. The perfect stocking stuffer

I received my Moto X around Valentines day. So what did they send me along with my customized product? A valentine!

MotoValentine2.jpg

How awesome is that?!

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MotoBoxCover.jpg

The box is the perfect size for a stocking, and it’s super festive. I haven’t received a device with better presentation. Everything you or the gift recipient needs is tucked into this adorable little box, ready for them to explore.

5. Active Display

I think I said it before, but I’ll say it again. This phone is family-friendly. I’m an introvert. I don’t like feeling over-connected, but I like to have my notes, photos, and reminders all organized in one spot on my phone. I like to have time for my family without notification’s constantly beeping at me. The active display allows me to simply pick up my phone, without touching a button, and it shows me the time before fading away again. Any notifications will pop up under the time, so if it’s not the someone-texted-me icon, I know it’s not important right now. No one’s dying, so checking my Facebook isn’t necessary. This phone is perfect for your teenager, grandpa, friend, or yourself because it just works for anyone. It’s easy to use at school or when you’re making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. When you’re giving a presentation at work or having a business lunch. Visiting Disney World or at your brother’s wedding, this phone will help you focus on the more important things in life.

6. Motorola Assist

AssistScreenshot.png

Again, this phone aids you in putting away the distractions.

  • I absolutely love the built-in Assist app.

    • Assist Sleeping: Set up a group of hours at night where you will be entirely unbothered by notifications while you sleep.

    • Assist Driving: Your phone will detect when you’re in the car. If you get a text or a call, it will read it aloud or put it on speaker. That way, you have hands-free voice control to eliminate the problem of texting while driving (this is great for new drivers). You also have the option here to play music whenever you are in the car.

    • Assist Meeting: You can set up a down-time for work or meetings. This is great for me, because no one can get ahold of me at work except for a select couple of numbers–and they have to call twice in a matter of five minutes in order for my phone to ring. I’m free from distractions at work, but If it’s a life-or-death situation, my Moto X will make sure people can get ahold of me.

    • My favorite one. Assist Home: Set up hours at home, for holidays, Birthdays, or simply for daily family time. Your phone will leave you to relax while you sit back and enjoy life with those you love.

If you’re planning on gifting a Moto X this Christmas, I have a few handy tips for you!

  • Gift it with a Google Play gift card. It doesn’t have to be big. $10 will do. It shows that even though you spent a decent amount of money on them already, you still cared about giving them a great start with their Moto X.

  • Grab a case. Again, you spent some money on them already, but offer a couple of things to go the extra mile. If you’re buying them a Moto X, they must be worth it!

  • Wrap it up. Some like to just give things to people… but anticipation is key! I recommend the “Binary” wrapping paper from ThinkGeek.

  • Engrave it. There’s no extra charge to engrave a personal message or monogram on the back of your Moto X. Take advantage of that! Nothing’s better than someone completely customized for your recipient.

Where can you find the Moto X?

Ideally, the best place to pickup Motorola’s Moto X is straight from the MotoMaker website, https://www.motorola.com/us/motomaker?pid=FLEXR2&action=designNew. There, you will be able to customize your Moto X in anyway you want. In buying it from somewhere else, you will usually end up with a pre-designed Moto X, and most of the time these are your standard white and black colors. However, most other retailers offer deals on the Moto X, whereas you won’t find them as often directly from Motorola. So, for started, you can grab it straight from the MotoMaker website for $99, on a new two year contract, and that does not include taxes or shipping costs.

If you’re looking to get a real steal on the Moto X, and do not mind missing out on all of the different customization options, there are some sweet deals out on the Internet, starting with Amazon. On an all new two year contract with AT&T, you can get the new and revised version of the Moto X that just recently launched for a mere penny. You can check it out here.

If you would rather stick with the first generation, you can get a similar deal on Amazon, but only through Verizon. A mere cent will get you a first generation Motorola Moto X through Verizon on a new two year contract–you can check out that deal here. This deal is only for black and white versions of the smartphone–Amazon does not have any other customization options available, unfortunately.

Another great place to keep an eye out is https://www.woot.com. While smartphones are not always available from them, they change up their selection every few days or so. Chances are, you will be able to find one of Motorola’s Moto X’s there off-contract on the cheap.

Conclusion

And that wraps up our top six reasons on why the Moto X is the perfect gift for that special person in your life this holiday season! The Motorola Moto X is a wonderful device, and whether you get the first or second generation, you or the recipient of such a gift will love what they have in their hands! Of course, if you cannot afford a Moto X, Motorola has a lot of cheaper options available, such as the Moto G. Just keep an eye out on The Droid Guy, as we will have plenty of posts on discounts and deals on all sorts of smartphones this holiday season!

I hope I helped to persuade you in gifting a Moto X this year, for a friend or for yourself. You won’t regret it! Do you have a Motorola Moto X? Is it the first or second generation model? If you have one, be sure to tell us all about it in the comments below. In fact, we would love to hear your favorite feature on the device. Let us know!

Best Android-compatible smartwatches available for Christmas

There’s no more denying it. Wearable devices are the next big thing in mobile tech, and it’s just a matter of time until they’ll start competing with “old-fashioned” smartphones for mainstream popularity.

Flinstone smartwatch

We still don’t expect them to have a similar impact on handheld sales as tablets hurt conventional computers, but they will take a bite out of their ancestors’ profitability. No question about it. Granted, for the time being, most smartwatches need phones to work together with them to make them half-productive.

Before long, independently operated timepieces could replace phones altogether and make us all look as cool as James Bond. Or at least as geeky. Never mind, we’re perfectly fine with that, as long as they can hold a charge for a couple of days, get cellular reception anywhere, and also allow us to browse the web with ease.

James Bond watch

Clearly, we’re not quite there yet, but just think how you’ll be able to brag in a few years you owned one of these pioneering gadgets before they were cool. With that in mind, here are the seven best Android-running and Android-compatible smartwatches money can buy today:

7. Samsung Gear Live – available for $199 in black or wine red on Amazon

Part of the first Android Wear wave, the Gear Live hasn’t exactly aged very gracefully and barely makes the top seven now after leading the ranks a measly four months back. That goes to show how rapidly evolving the market is, and how badly the Gear Live needs a discount to survive.

Gear Live

At $199, this thing is simply too ugly and unproductive to qualify for a smart Christmas buy. Put differently, I wouldn’t gift my biggest enemy the Gear Live. The square design is disgusting, the 1.63-inch 320 x 320 pix res screen just… meh, and the battery life underwhelming, at around a day of continuous use, give or take.

But Adrian, if it’s so bad, why is it on the recommended list, albeit in last place? The answer is Android Wear. Also, it’s a Samsung, and that has to count for something.

6. Pebble Steel – $199.99 in black matte or brushed stainless

Yes, we realize the Pebble Steel only slipped one spot since August, and now leads the Gear Live after trailing it by four places. And no, Pebble didn’t roll out a magic software update in the meantime to vastly improve basic functionality.

Pebble Steel

It’s just that, after careful (re) consideration, we’ve come to the conclusion apps aren’t everything. Great, retro, elegant looks and record-setting autonomy trump Android Wear, and a recent $30 price cut also helped the Steel become a steal (pun intended).

To be clear, no, Pebble’s second-gen contender doesn’t run Android Wear, or an OS resembling in any way Android. Still, it’s fully Android compatible, neatly displays notifications from your synched phone, and supports over 1,000 proprietary applications, most of which should come in handy for health nuts.

5. Asus ZenWatch

No one took Asus very seriously when they set out to revolutionize the fledgling smartwatch universe, and sadly, the Taiwanese seem to be treating the ZenWatch as a limited test run. If you can find this baby though at its list price of $200, don’t give it a second thought. Buy it before it’s too late.

ASUS-ZenWatch

It’s not round, but it’s extremely fashionable. It’s useless without a smartphone yet highly productive on the whole, thanks to Android Wear and, surprisingly enough, ZenUI tweaks and add-ons. It’s mostly ho-hum in the battery life department, but makes up for it with performance perfectly on par with the medal winners detailed below.

Overall, it’s the ideal stocking filler… if you can find it.

4. Sony SmartWatch 3 – $275 on Amazon; $250 via Google Play

Let’s say we understand why Asus has trouble building enough ZenWatch copies to go around. But et tu, Sony? You should be skilled in this niche, after all, you helped set it up back in 2012. But for whatever reason, the Sony SmartWatch 3 is really hard to come by.

Sony-Smartwatch-3

Which is a damn shame, because this is Sony’s first Android wearable effort and, while it’s not a looker, it’s packed with features you’re bound to find useful. Built-in GPS, amazing water protection, a design tailor-made for fitness enthusiasts and, oh, did we mention the built-in GPS?

Guess we did, but it’s worth underlining. Now lower the ask to $200, let Amazon and Best Buy sell it, Sony, and it’s game over for Samsung, LG, Motorola and perhaps even Apple. Too bad that’s never going to happen.

3. Samsung Gear S – $200 with AT&T contracts, $300 outright

Futuristic and fully independent, the Gear S is a big step in the right direction, but it’s still awkward to wear and just all-around unattractive. Curves are nice, Sammy, but what we really want are circles. Nope, a smartphone for our wrist won’t do, it’s a classic watch that can work as a smartphone we’re dreaming of.

samsung-gear-s

Adding insult to injury, the Gear S runs Tizen. Frigging, fugly, glitchy, limited Tizen. Obviously, it can pair up with an Android phone, or make and receive voice calls all by itself. The latter is really the only reason we’re (unenthusiastically) recommending the gizmo, which also feels a little pricey and doesn’t impress with stellar battery life.

2. LG G Watch R – starting at $285 on Amazon

This doesn’t happen often, but for once, LG’s architects have eclipsed Samsung’s designer team. By a landslide, the G Watch R is sleeker, more elegant and more… watch-like than the Gear S. In short, it’s not something to be ashamed with when wearing, and that was no easy feat to pull for this baby’s creators.

LG G Watch R

Also available directly from Google at $300, as well as on T-Mobile and AT&T, the G Watch R is highly dependent on third-party phones, like the vast majority of today’s smartwatches. On the bright side, the 1.3-inch P-OLED display is a stunner, the 410 mAh cell pretty solid for wearable standards, and you even get IP67 water and dust resistance.

1. Motorola Moto 360 – $250 in black leather; $300 in stone leather

This was probably the toughest call we’ve had to make since starting these listicles, but ultimately, the 360 (barely) edged out the G Watch R with affordability and a slightly more original sense of style. Aesthetics is perhaps a matter of personal preference, but we feel the 360 blends the retro feel of a conventional watch with the futuristic vibe of a smartwatch better than the G Watch R.

Moto 360

And yes, Moto 360’s battery performance is a little on the underwhelming side, as is overall speed and system smoothness. But the superior build materials also helped Motorola defeat LG, as did the numerous band and color options.

Mind you, the 360 can be picked up at Best Buy in “natural silver” with a metal strap for $300. Or in “dark metal”, also at $300. Or, you can purchase a separate $30 “cognac” leather band to keep things fresh and original. Now, let’s hear it for our champion and fill up those Christmas stockings with the best of the best in Android tech. Who’s with us?

Black Friday 2014 Android deals, part two – Staples, Kmart, Sam’s Club, GameStop and more

Things are heating up on the promotion front, with just one week left until the Thanksgiving Day feasts and eight days before the darkest, sweetest Friday of the year. Yes, ladies and gents, Black Friday is nigh, and in keeping with tradition, most online and offline electronics retailers have disclosed their celebratory ads.

BLACK-FRIDAY

Some are so desperate for attention they’ll organize pre-Black Friday sales this Friday, on the 21st, but for the most part, you’re advised to stay put. Good things come to those who wait, and the deals we’re about to round up are living proof you should avoid jumping the gun at all costs.

Enough jibber-jabber, and here are some of the items you Android addicts should put on your shopping lists for Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday and/or Christmas:

Staples

Forget office supplies and furniture, Staples is all about the gadgets this holiday season, discounting a bundle of smartwatches, phones, tablets, laptops and everything in between starting at 6 PM, next Thursday. Aka, Thanksgiving evening.

Staples

Yes, driving to a Staples store with a belly full of turkey, gravy, sweet potatoes and cider is going to be quite the challenge. But it’ll all be worth it, when summing up your savings. Just be careful to choose from the stud deals listed below, not the duds.

Best deals:

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 Lite – $99.99
  • Amazon Fire HD6 – $79
  • Fire HD7 – $109
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 – $249.99
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5 – $399.99
  • Unlocked Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini Value Edition – $99.99

Galaxy S3 Mini Value Edition

Maybe next year:

  • JLab 7-inch tablet – $39.99
  • Fitbit Zip activity tracker – $59.99
  • Fitbit One – $99.99
  • Jawbone Up – $79.99
  • Jawbone Up24 – $99.99
  • Fitbit Flex – $99.99
  • Motorola Moto 360 – $249.99

Kmart

Clearly no match for arch rivals Walmart and Target, Kmart steals the spotlight by stretching out Black Friday sales a full three days. Some deals debut at 6 am, Thanksgiving morning, others at 7 pm, Thanksgiving night, then a third wave hits stores Black Friday morning, a fourth on noon next Friday, and finally, all day Saturday you can get… whatever’s left.

Kmart

Studs:

  • Amazon Fire HD 6 – $79.99 (plus $10 back in points for members)
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 – $149.99 (plus $20 back in points)
  • Boost Mobile LG Volt – $39.99 (a whopping 50 percent off Amazon’s current price)
  • No-contract TracFone or Net10 LG Optimus Fuel – $9.99
  • Fuhu Nabi 2 kid-friendly tablet – $149.99 (plus $50 back in membership points)
  • Prepaid Net10 LG Optimus Dynamic 2 – $19.99

Duds:

  • Xtreme 7 tablet – $39.99
  • Trio Stealth G4 – $59.99
  • Zeki 8 – $89.99

Sam’s Club

Before getting to the actual promos, we’d like to remind you a member card is needed to shop at Sam’s Club. It’s wise to sign up early if you want to visit Walmart’s subsidiary on Black Friday, and buy something from their solid slate of discounts.

Galaxy Note 3

Hot deals:

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3 – $0.96 with contracts (limit of 10 units per club)
  • Samsung Galaxy S5 – $0.96 with two-year pacts
  • Jawbone Up24 – $69.98
  • Fitbit Flex (plus additional band and charger) – $79.98

Not-so-hot deals:

  • Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 – $149
  • Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 – $249

We know we listed these two as must-buys a little earlier, but we’re thinking primarily of those who aren’t Sam’s Club members yet. And for them, going through all the trouble is just not worth it for a couple of slates available elsewhere at matching prices.

GameStop

Over 4,000 stores open at midnight, November 28, and technically, offers are valid through the 30th. But who are we kidding, you’d better act fast, or all inventory will vanish until you get a chance to wake up on Thanksgiving morning.

HTC-Desire-510

Hotties:

  • Cricket Wireless HTC Desire 510 – free after $75 mail-in rebate
  • Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 – $149.99
  • Pre-owned Samsung Galaxy S5 – starting at $450
  • Asus MeMo Pad ME170CX – $79.99

Notties:

  • Sophix 7 – $49.99
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 Lite – $119.99

Toys R Us

Do your little ones a favor. If they’re into gadgets, do your Christmas shopping elsewhere. Your trip to a local Toys R Us shop is literally not worth it this Black Friday, since what’s waiting you there is a bunch of no-name, cheapo slates and a solid, overpriced Samsung.

Toys R Us

Don’t even think about it:

  • VTech InnoTab 3S Connect – $39.99
  • Polaroid 7 – $39.99
  • Polaroid 9 – $59.99
  • Kurio Touch 4S – $29.99
  • Galaxy Tab 3 7.0 Kids Edition – $129.99
  • Kurio 7S – $49.99

Dell

Dell

This computer manufacturer wants you to swing by its “Home” retail locations not once, but twice over the next ten days. They’ve announced doorbusters both for BF and Cyber Monday, with a time and inventory limit on each of the four following items:

  • Venue 7 3000 Series – $99.99 ($143 on Amazon now, so go for it)
  • Venue 8 3000 Series – $149.99 (warning, warning, must-buy on the horizon!)
  • Garmin Vivofit – $79.99 ($79.99 on Amazon now, so your argument is invalid, Dell)
  • Misfit Shine – $79.99 (discounted from… $82.99 on Amazon, so forget it)

Office Depot and OfficeMax

You’d think the holy union between these two retail veterans would allow them to set up a Black Friday yard sale for the ages. Only that’s not really the case. They have a few intriguing bargains, and doors open at 6 pm on Thanksgiving Thursday, which we appreciate. But all in all, their joint efforts come a bit short and underwhelm, compared to their separate discount work from last year.

Galaxy Tab 3 Lite

Don’t think, just buy:

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 Lite – $89.99
  • 3-inch Toshiba Chromebook – $199.99
  • Amazon Fire HD6 – $79.99

Only if you have to:

  • Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 – $149.99
  • Galaxy Tab 4 8.0 – $199.99
  • Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 – $249.99

Maybe try elsewhere:

  • Lenovo Android tablet with keyboard dock – $199.99
  • Apex 7 HD – $39.99

Dollar General

Wait, Dollar General sells Android gizmos? It would appear so, and a couple of them pop up in the variety retailer’s Black Friday catalog, next to $2.50 Pepsi 12-packs, $2 Cheetos, and $1 Chunky Soup cans. Don’t you find that hilarious?

Dollar General

We approve:

  • Net10 Motorola Moto E – $69
  • Net10 Huawei Inspira – $19

No! Just… no:

  • Generic 7-inch KitKat tablet – $40

Kohl’s

An even bigger surprise is seeing Kohl’s squeezing a couple of Android tablets and a few Android-compatible wearables in its rich 65-page inventory of promos, including jewelry, toys, cookware, sheet sets, clothing items, clothing items and… more clothing items. Too bad the deals are crap:

  • HP G2 – $99.99
  • Zeki 7 – $49.99
  • Jawbone Up24 – $99.99
  • Fitbit Flex – $75 with $25 mail-in rebate

fitbit-flex

Shall we even go there? Fine, the HP G2 can be purchased today in exchange for $101, the Jawbone Up24 is $107, and the Fitbit Flex starts at around $92. Some “special offers” you have there, Kohl’s.

But mind you, it’s not all over yet. We’ll continue to keep an eye out for breaking Black Friday ads, and you can expect at least one update to the savings saga by Wednesday. Then, we’ll be here for you all of Thanksgiving Day, BF and Cyber Monday. Whatever happens, you can count on us for bringing a smile to your loved ones’ faces and save a few bucks in the process.

These apps will help you fight the post-holiday blues

Holiday Dog

The holidays are over, and it’s the start of a new year. For many, this means starting the year right with a few resolutions. For some, the period after holiday season could be a time of post-holiday blues. Are you an avid smartphone user? Here are a few apps that can help you manage.

The post-holiday blues are often considered to be post-holiday “fatigue” because of all the stress and tiredness we experience during the holiday rush. For many, the holidays were about getting ready with the festive season, which includes decorating one’s home or workplace, buying presents for loved ones, traveling for family reunions, or even going on vacation (perhaps to somewhere warmer). The holiday spirit is great, although sometimes people feel the pressure of having to meet expectations that come with the season.

For some, it means quiet contemplation, especially those who are into a deeper understanding of the meaning behind Christmas, Hannukkah, Eid, New Year’s Eve or whichever relevant holiday that comes with the year end. The coming of January means getting back to work in full-force after the usual lull at work during the year-end festivities. But this can sometimes mean a difficult re-start, especially if you’ve slowed down a bit to relax for the holidays. The extreme weather conditions — the polar vortex in the northern hemisphere and the heat waves in the southern hemisphere — only make it worse!

Productivity experts and life coaches give us a few recommendations on how to address the post holiday blues, and these include taking stock of our finances, re-organizing (or actually organizing) our workflow, improving our health, and keeping in touch with friends and loved ones even after the holidays.

Here are a few apps and trick to help fight the blues.

Finances

No money

The holidays are usually when people go on spending binges. You might want to impress your friends and colleagues with great presents. Or, you probably upgraded your gadgets — home entertainment systems, laptops, smartphones, tablets or even your car — during the Black Friday, Cyber Monday and various gadget sales during the season. Or, you may have spent some money on decorations for Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas or the New Year’s Eve.

The post-holiday season is usually the time for taking stock of our finances and making sure we will not start the new year in the red. Useful apps include Mint.com, which interfaces with your bank accounts for easy planning, management and bills payment. You can also try Expensify, which automatically scans your receipts and generates expense reports so you can keep track of your spending. If saving money is part of your new year’s resolutions, SmartyPig lets you set up goals, and will automatically set aside pre-defined amounts from your bank account, which correspond to your goals. Aptly named after the piggy bank, the app even gives users rewards for reaching goals.

Health and fitness

Health Buff

Yet another area for concern after the holidays is our health. With all the parties, binge eating, drinking and stress during the holidays, we’re bound to gain a few pounds. We can address this through a mix of discipline in eating, exercise and a few changes in habits.

LG’s Fitness Tracker has been previewed at CES, although we may have to wait a few months more until the Korean company formally launches the product, which should work with the LG Fitness app. You can also try the Nike+ fitness app. It does not require any additional accessory, although the fact that Nike has not made an Android app for its latest Nike+ FuelBand SE might be disappointing to fitness buffs.

Elsewhere, you can try Pocket Yoga, which is basically a mobile instructor for Yoga poses. MyFitnessPal‘s calorie counter has a database of about 1.5 million food items, which helps you keep track of the calories you consume day to day. Of course, with the food you’ve probably eaten through the holidays, you would probably want to trim down by visiting the gym. You won’t be able to escape, with GymPact. The app is run by a community of gym rats who ensure (or even enforce) attendance by having non-compliant users pay actual dollars for missing their workout schedules. Users who go to the gym faithfully earn  from the pool of funds.

Productivity

Back to work

If you slacked off on work during the holidays, then this is the time to shape up. Productivity experts say it’s okay to step back and relax a bit so you can look forward to what lies ahead for the whole year. But we still need to recognize that the holidays may have put our work into disarray. Here are a few apps that can help keep things organized.

Any.DO is a great task manager app, and synchronizes across Android, iOS and web app. It also plays well with Cal, the partner app built by the same developers. Any.DO helps you plan your day with a two-minute outline each morning, during which you can prioritize tasks. The app also has geo-location reminders, which are pretty useful when you need to reminders for tasks when you reach a certain place.

Asana is a project tracking app famously known for being used by the Twitter team internally. The app primarily runs on the web, but iOS and Android versions come in handy for keeping your project tasks accessible on your smartphone or tablet. Third-party alternatives also exist, such as Hill88 for iOS and MyAsana for Android, which promise a better native app experience, as opposed to the official app, which is actually an HTML5 implementation.

If you’d like to stick with Google’s own applications, you can go for Google Keep, which syncs sticky notes, to-do items and clips across Android and web. There are also alternatives for use with Google’s own Task system (built into Gmail), such as Tasks Free and GTasks.

Planning for the next party?

Party person

We often get to meet our distant relatives and friends once in a while, and the holidays are usually the time when folks drive or fly for get-togethers that are otherwise difficult to coordinate in the middle of the year. Fortunately, messaging applications help keep us in touch through the cities and continents. We do have our fair share of instant messaging, VoIP and video-conferencing applications. Among my personal favorites are Facebook Messenger (because of the ubiquity of Facebook friends), Viber (because of speed) and Telegram (for privacy), but any mobile user would probably be using a combination of these already. The choice is up to you and what your friends are already using.

Planning your next vacation or get-together can also help reduce the post-holiday blues. This comes with varied difficulty, of course, depending on whether you plan to travel across cities, countries or entire continents. Either way, TripIt’s Travel Organizer can help you plan and execute your trip. You can also find good deals on airline, cruise and hotel reservations via Kayak and Hipmunk or Virgin Holidays‘ augmented reality brochure app. Traveling on the cheap? You can check out short-term rents at AirBnb or last-minute booking service HotelQuickly. If you’re planning your summer cruise or vacation months ahead, then  Of course, you can check out TripAdvisor for establishment reviews.

It’s yet another year of gadget launches, apps and technologies. What does 2014 have in store for us?

Do you have more app ideas? Get in touch with us.

Featured images: Shutterstock

iPad 5 and iPad Mini 2 Rumored to Arrive During the Christmas Season

ipad-5

ipad-5

It seems like Apple fans will have something new to look forward to next Christmas. According to TechRadar, the Cupertino-based company will be offering a double treat on the Yuletide Season in the forms of the iPad 5 and iPad Mini 2.

The Source of the Rumor

The report reminded readers though to treat the story with utmost discretion because the news came from Digitimes. The site warned that its basis for the rumor isn’t exactly very reliable in terms of reporting leaks. The article mentioned that the Taiwanese site claimed to have spoken to a couple of “supply chain makers”, who were able to confirm that the iPad 5 will start its production in July or August this year with a scheduled release just after its major production.

iPad 5 Specs

The source said that the iPad 5 will be 20 to 30 percent lighter than its predecessor. This is due to its extra slim touchscreen panel, thinner bezel and a couple of physical features similar to the iPad Mini.

In a related report by the same source, it stated that the popular Apple analyst from KGI Securities, Ming-Chi Kuo, said that it would be equipped with a 9.7-inch display. Then, it will have the enhanced A6X processor. Plus, an upgrade to its camera is something to be expected and a couple of new technologies being developed by the company.

iPad Mini 2 Specs

Going to the upcoming baby brother of Apple tablets, the iPad Mini 2, the report speculated that it may sport a 7.9 inch touchscreen. So far, the details about its other possible specs are still shrouded in secrecy. However, it is assumed that it would benefit from the new Retina display of the company and an enhanced battery capacity that will enable it to last longer.

Keep your eyes peeled for more updates from us soon about this upcoming device.

Source: TechRadar

Minecraft Sells 240,000 Copies Over Christmas

minecraft

Did you know Minecraft was popular? Yeah, who would of thought.

Mojang has just released their Christmas sales figures, and they’re nothing short of amazing.

What’s interesting about the sales figures is how Minecraft performed throughout 2012. 4,177,843 people bought a copy of Minecraft in 2012, and as PC gamer notes, this accounts for a whopping 47.3% of the game’s total sales on the PC. This does not include Pocket Edition sales or even sales on Xbox Live Arcade. Minecraft isn’t just popular, the audience is constantly growing, which is what constantly amazes the gaming industry.

What makes Minecraft so popular is a topic for a different time, but it has a lot to deal with how creative you can be in a sandbox game like Minecraft, as there really is no game like it.

During Christmas day, Minecraft managed to snag 70,808 copies, which arguably isn’t a bad number in itself. Between the 24th and the 30th Minecraft sold a whopping 241,845 copies. That’s not all though.

The console and mobile versions of the game sold slightly more than the PC version. In total, Minecraft sold 15,079,940 copies in the year of 2012. These are massive sales numbers considering the game launched as an Alpha release back in 2009.

It’ll be interesting to see how well Minecraft will do in 2013, especially considering that the documentary was just recently released.

 

17.4 million New Android/iOS Devices Activated on Christmas

ipad-mini

Christmas day is always a fun time for everybody. Wrapping presents, opening them and the fun followed afterwards is all what the Christmas spirit is all about (and yes, eggnog too). But it’s the time of the year when electronics manufacturers sell their devices in large numbers as there are tons of people gifting gadgets and other electronics, mainly because it’s convenient and something which everybody uses. This was evident during the recently concluded Christmas sales, as according to Flurry Analytics, over 17.4 million Android and iOS devices were activated on December 25th. This, in comparison to the 4 million Android/iOS devices activated on an average each day during the first 20 days of December.

There are no numbers for each platform, so it’s hard to pin point towards one platform which sold well during Christmas. It is however quite clear that Apple was the major winner during Christmas, at least in terms of tablets as the iPad Mini and the large sized third gen/fourth gen iPad sold fairly well. Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD was also among the top selling tablets during Christmas. A marketshare of 51% for tablets was reported on Christmas day. Sadly for Google, its Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 tablets are only available in the Google Play Store, with the Nexus 10 not even in stock there. So it is not surprising that these two devices are missing from the list.

When we speak of app downloads, it also saw a substantial increase on Christmas day. Beginning from 9AM as compared to the average download times between 7PM to 10PM, people reportedly downloaded over 328 million apps in one day. In comparison, the average downloads per day during the first 20 days of December was 155 million each day. Here again, there’s no way to know which platform sold more apps, but a collective 328 million apps were downloaded by Android and iOS devices. This speaks volumes of the large volumes of sales manufacturers/app developers see during the holidays and also a lesson for Google to stock up on its devices during this crucial time of the season.

Apple made the most of the tablet sales and deservingly so as there was no major competition to stand up against it. I guess the introduction of the iPad Mini has gone a long way in making the iPads more appealing to the general public despite featuring slightly low end specs. Expectedly, the likes of the Surface RT are missing from the list as it has only recently made its way to retail stores. That’s not to say that the device might not have sold at all though.

Source: Flurry
Via: Phone Arena

Tracking Santa Made Easier This Christmas With These Apps

santa-tracker-norad

It’s that time of the year again when we all get to open new presents and hope for something awesome. But for children, it’s a lot more than that. The concept of Santa Claus is imprinted in their brains right from the child hood as they wait in anticipation for their Christmas presents, every time of the year. And now, to know when Santa might drop by at your place, you can track him thanks to Google and NORAD. These two competitive services offer the ability to track Santa, however we must warn you against using both of them simultaneously as you might find Santa to be in two different places. Until a few years ago, NORAD (North American Aerospace Defense Command) made use of Google Earth to bring this feature to the fore. But has since switched to Bing Maps, which meant it was only a matter of time until Google came up with a Santa Tracker of its own. Google’s tracker runs using data from both Maps and Google Earth, so one might give more emphasis to this one over NORAD.

Google’s Santa tracker is web based, which means you can’t access it from an app or anything but only from your desktop or mobile web browser. Honestly, I feel Google’s offering will do a better job of convincing kids that Santa is actually on his way. It also shows the kilometers/miles that Santa has travelled and the number of gifts distributed (so does NORAD), so that you can keep the warm milk and cookies ready just in time of his landing. Google’s Santa can be tracked at google.com/santatracker while NORAD’s Santa can be found at noradsanta.org. Moreover, NORAD has a Twitter handle dedicated to the Santa Tracker (@NoradSanta) which provides you real time updates on Santa’s status. And if users are particularly interested, NORAD has set up a team of volunteers to respond to query emails about Santa at [email protected]. NORAD Santa Tracker mobile apps are available on Android, iOS and Windows Phones respectively. There’s a phone line too – 1-877-446-6723.

As The Verge rightly suggests, people will find both NORAD’s and Google’s offering intriguing and fun and it will all come down to personal preference. These aren’t the only Santa Trackers that users can get hold of actually. A quick search through your respective app hubs will give you an idea as to how many Santas there are to be tracked. There’s still some time left for Christmas (depending on where you live), so make sure you spot Santa before the clock hits midnight.

Source: Google Santa Tracker, NORAD Santa Tracker
Via: The Verge

Fill Your Virtual Stocking With An Amazon $5 MP3 Album

amazon

Best Buy isn’t the only one giving a helping hand to last minute shoppers, as Amazon is offering up over 2,000 albums for a mere $5 per album. As you know, it’s way too late to order anything that would require any sort of shipping process, which makes $5 digital albums a great gift to fill that virtual stocking! If you are looking for something even cheaper than $5 per album, Amazon has 20 new and classic albums on sale for $1.99 a pop for their Gold Box deal today. Granted, that isn’t as vast as the 2,000 albums offered for $5 an album.

Amazon also has some of their top mp3 albums up for sale at $3.99, a dollar less than their $5 album sale. Again, there aren’t as many albums available, but there certainly are some albums on there that some customers would find interest in.

If you are interested in taking advantage in one of these deals, make sure to hit the source link below. The $5 digital album promotional will last until January 31st of 2013. If you’ve procrastinated on getting someone a Christmas gift this long, you’ve got a whole month ahead of you to still consider it. Albeit I can’t guarantee that the recipient will enjoy the extremely delayed Christmas gift.

Are you going to be taking advantage of one of the discounted Mp3 deals today? Let us know in the comments section below!

source: @amazonmp3, (1), (2), (3)

Google’s Annual Christmas Card Video

 

bugdroid

Google hands down makes some of the best promotional videos out there. Today, Google has released their annual Android Christmas card video featuring a little bugdroid who just wants to go outside. He’s quickly given various Nexus devices to recreate winter scenes and is then later joined by other bugdroids. I almost feel bad for the poor guy. Check out the video below!

Nexus 4 and Nexus 10 Out Of Stock On Google Play Store

nexus

There is no doubt that the Nexus 4 and Nexus 10 are in high demand with both devices listed as “Sold Out” on the Google Play Store again. Customers who were looking to order one of the devices will have to wait until Google gets their next batch of stock in. Albeit customers waiting for the Nexus 4 could potentially be waiting for an extended period of time, as Google UK & Ireland boss Dan Cobley explains LG’s supply as “scarce and erratic.” In addition to the Nexus 4 and Nexus 10 listed as “Sold Out,” the 16GB model of the Nexus 7 has also been sold out. Albeit it should be in stock shortly if Google plans on selling 1 million units this month.

The high demand is definitely a good sign for Google, but the Nexus 4 shortages have been more than frustrating for customers and potential buyers alike. Hopefully Google will be able to prepare for such a high demand like this next time. I have my doubts that we’ll be seeing another LG-manufactured Nexus device after this fiasco though.

Regardless, we’ll make sure to let everyone know when Google receives their next batch of stock! In the mean time, if you’re really desperate to get a Nexus 4 for your loved one(s) for Christmas, there are a plethora on e-Bay brand new, albeit at inflated prices.

source: Google Play Store