Google's streaming video chat app Duo hits 100 million downloads

It took nine months for Google’s streaming video chat app Duo to reach its first 50 million downloads. It took only two months for the next 50 million downloads to take place, and right now Duo has been installed over 100 million times. While there aren’t any figures that tell us how often Duo is actually being employed, Google has made Duo a snap to use. In addition, starting last March Google released an update allowing audio calls to be placed over Duo. This makes the app even more useful.

Perhaps the most important thing that ran up the installation tally was the fact that in December, …


Samsung SM-G9650 hits Geekbench; this could be a lite version of the Galaxy S8+

Earlier today we told you about a new Samsung phone that surfaced on Geekbench. The model number of that handset is SM-G9600, and as we told you in the earlier story, the device is powered by the sdm840. This could be the Snapdragon 840 SoC. With four cores, the chip could be more closely related to the Snapdragon 820 than the Snapdragon 835 chipset. The latter, which comes with an octa-core CPU, is currently being used by the current generation of top shelf phones.

Now, another Samsung model apparently related to the earlier discovery was also found on Geekbench. This time, the model number …

Instagram Stories hits 250 million active daily users and surpasses Snapchat’s total users count

Instagram’s Stories feature has hit a whopping count of 250 million daily users – or a quarter of a billion – after having report a 200 million count only two months ago. It now surpasses Snapchat’s 166 million (as of May) total daily active users by a wide margin and currently seems hardly reachable, even though some people suggest it copied Stories from Snap.

The concept behind Stories is quite straightforward – it enables you to share posts that are visible to other users for 24 hours, after which they disappear. Snapchat launched Stories in October 2013, offering …

iPhone loyalty rate hits 92% ahead of iPhone 8 release

It appears that iPhone users are extremely loyal customers. In a survey conducted this April, financial services firm Morgan Stanley established that 92% of iPhone owners who were likely to buy a new handset in the next 12 months plan to upgrade to another iPhone. 
This is a sizeable 6% year-over-year increase compared to the 86% recorded by Morgan Stanley in 2016. In fact, the loyalty rate for 2017 is almost tied with Apple’s all-time record of 93% documented in 2015 when the iPhone 6s was launched.
Morgan Stanley …

BlackBerry KEYone battery life test result really hits it out of the park

The BlackBerry KEYone is a phone with a keyboard in 2017. And while that was pretty much the standard 10 years ago, in 2017, it’s the only such phone.
But that’s okay: it’s meant to be that way. The KEYone has a 4.5-inch display with a 3:2 aspect ratio, and a laser focus on productivity and email, while doing all the things modern Android phones do. The phone is not exactly beautiful, but it’s practical, it’s meant to get things done.
One key aspect of a practical phone, however, is clearly its ability to deliver …

Rovio's Battle Bay mobile game hits Android and iOS devices

As expected, Finnish giant Rovio globally launched its next major mobile title, Battle Bay. Unlike most of the previous games released by Rovio, this one does not seem to have birds in it.

Although there are no more angry birds in Rovio’s game, Battle Bay promises to offer the same level of entertainment to its fans. As the developer says, Battle Bay is “a real-time multiplayer battle arena in your pocket.”

However, this time you’ll be choosing a ship instead of an angry bird, add some guns to it and start putting the pressure on your opponents. According …

Super Mario Run hits nearly 150 million downloads, but makes less money than Fire Emblem

Super Mario Run, one of the most successful mobile games launched by Nintendo this year, has reached almost 150 million downloads on both the Android and iOS platforms combined.

Although that’s says something about the game’s success, it appears that not many of those who downloaded Super Mario Run were willing to pay for it. As some of you might know already, Super Mario Run offers the first couple of levels for free, after which players must pay to access the full game.

Moreover, the second mobile game released by Nintendo in 2017, Fire Emblem has a bigger …

Moto G5 Plus hits the shelves at Republic Wireless for $229

The Moto G5 Plus, one of the robust mid-range Android smartphones recently launched on the market, has just made its debut at Republic Wireless. Customers can now pick this one up for prices starting at $229.

The good news is Republic Wireless offers the 4GB RAM/64GB ROM model as well, though customers will have to pay $299 upfront to get it. Another option allows you to grab the Moto G5 Plus for just $14 per month (32GB model) or $18 per month (64GB model).

The smartphone is available in either Lunar Gray or Fine Gold color options, and according to Republic Wireless …

Instagram hits 1 million advertisers, double the amount it had 6 months ago

Instagram is in demand as a platform for advertisers. Since September, the number of companies that actively advertise on the picture and video sharing app has doubled to one million. A year ago, that number was 200,000. Advertising on Instagram can be quite fruitful for these firms, especially since as many as 400 million people are using the app every day. James Quarles, who is the head of advertising at Instagram, says the appeal of the site goes beyond the raw numbers.

According to Quarles, 80% of Instagram’s users follow at least one business. The idea is to get these Instagram account …

Mass Effect: Andromeda companion app hits Android and iOS devices

A few days ahead of Mass Effect: Andromeda’s official release, EA launches the companion app for its upcoming game. The mobile application will allow players execute so-called “strikes” without having to open the game.

On top of that, the companion app allows players to customized their loadout ahead of a multiplayer match. You’ll be able to easily swap character’s weapons, mods, and equipment, as well as spend skill points.

Since these Strike Team missions are available for a limited time, the companion app allows players to check how much time they have left before they expire. …