Is this carplay compatible?
Interested in Apple’s foray into integrating iOS into the world’s automotives with CarPlay, but don’t quite have the cash to pony up for a whole new car just to get your hands on a sweet Apple-made dashboard system? Good news, friends – Pioneer has just announced, with confirmation from Apple, that they will be bringing CarPlay to today’s vehicles with their aftermarket media systems.
But wait, there’s more – not only is Pioneer bringing CarPlay to new aftermarket systems, but also to six systems that’s already up for sale with an upcoming firmware update. Yes, that means that you’ll be able to buy a CarPlay system for use with your car right now, however the firmware update won’t be coming for some time in the not too distant future.
Apple isn’t the only tech company interested in bringing today’s mobile technology on the road – Google at CES earlier this year announced that they would be bringing Android to the car with their new Open Automotive Alliance program.
Security at its finest
A German security team, Security Research Labs, was easily able to spoof the system due to the way it’s implemented in other devices which makes it a higher risk. The video, embedded after the break, not only shows the team gaining access to the device by using a fake fingerprint but it also shows them gaining access to PayPal which also supports the new sensor and is just as easily faked out as the rest of the phone.
Interestingly, Ars Technica reports that this spoofing method doesn’t work against Apple’s Touch ID system but does work on the S5. Given that the team acquired the fingerprint simply by taking a photo of a fingerprint left on a screen, it’s very easy to replicate this attack and gain access to everything, especially when you consider just how many smudges are often left on a phone screen.
The video showing off this spoofing attack is embedded after the break.
Source: Ars Technica
6 cameras ought to be enough for that perfect selfie
There have been some rumors saying that Amazon is working on their own phone. It looks like the rumors were right because what you see above is reportedly a prototype of Amazon’s upcoming and unannounced phone.
As is the case with many upcoming phones, this prototype is in a decoy shell so that we can’t see what the hardware underneath looks like. A similar method was used by Apple back during the infamous Gizmodo iPhone 4 leak. Nonetheless, this is what is supposed to be Amazon’s phone as it stands right now.
According to BGR, this device will run on a Qualcomm Snapdragon and 2GB of RAM and come with Amazon’s own fork of Android similar to what they use on the Kindle. The screen is a 4.7″ 720p display which is a bit low-resolution in this world today. Finally, as far as specs are concerned, this phone comes with no less than six cameras.
There’s a 13-megapixel camera on the back and a “standard front-facing” camera on the front for your selfies but it also comes with four additional cameras in the front of the device. These four extra cameras are special infrared cameras which are used to track the user’s face. These special cameras are being used to run a glasses-free 3D display similar to that of the Nintendo 3DS.
With all that power under the hood, you’d expect it to have a pricey tag on the outside and you’re probably right: although we’re still a ways away from the release date, BGR reports that the device seen here is the high-end device with an as of yet unseen low-end device coming later.
Somebody's getting sacked
Things got a little embarrassing for US Airways today after a company representative accidentally posted an… interesting pornographic image on Twitter this morning. What’s worse, the company then proceeded to leave the image up for about an hour while the company happily replied to other Twitter users and went along as though they hadn’t just posted a photo of a naked woman “enjoying” a model airplane. Which is just pretty awful even considering how awful this already was.
The tweet was sent as a reply to a concerned customer. The following is a screenshot of the tweet, which has since been removed, with all the weirdness blurred out for obvious reasons.
US Airways claims that they had “no idea” that the photo was posted on Twitter, and that the company is currently looking into how something so completely bizarre could have been posted and then ignored for an hour. Our guess? Someone’s getting sacked.
Finally bringing Windows Phone up to par
In the Microsoft camp, much excitement has been created over Windows Phone 8.1 and for good reason. Many improvements have been made to Windows Phone including adding new features that have been missing since the very beginning. These new features also help give Windows Phone a fighting chance against its iOS and Android competition.
So let’s find out just what it is that’s got the Microsoft guys so excited. The review, as always, starts after the break.
A couple weeks ago, we reported on a rumor that Windows Phone 8.1 would be arriving on April 14th. Today is that day and it’s confirmed – the Windows Phone 8.1 Preview for Developers has been released through Microsoft’s Preview for Developer program, meaning anyone with a Windows Phone developer account (even a free App Studio account) can download and install this update just like you would any other update.
According to one of my contacts, the update is split into two parts: the first part is a pre-update, if you will, that presumably contains some bugfixes for the existing Windows Phone 8 OS while the second part is the actual Windows Phone 8.1 Developer Preview update.
Windows Phone 8.1 contains many new features such as VPN support, more tile customization options and most notably, Cortana. If you’re interested in the update, all you have to do is get your phone developer unlocked and install the Preview for Developers app – but be aware that once you update, there’s no going back to a stable OS.
Review coming soon!
I'll have a You Pick Two
Anybody who loves a good sandwich is likely to have a sort of love affair with Panera Bread. The better-than-fast-food-but-still-not-quite-a-real-restaurant sandwich chain has become somewhat iconic for its selection of premium made to order sandwiches, soups in bread bowls, and most recently pasta dishes (oh god, the Macaroni & Cheese - the Macaroni & Cheese), and now the company has announced today that they will be significantly revamping each and every one of their retail locations before the end of 2015, creating one of the first visions of what a sandwich shop should look like in the twenty-first century.
Panera is known for its long lines, but no more – according to the company, the chain will be virtually removing lines in their entirety for anybody with a smartphone. Customers will simply be able to grab a table, order and pay from their table, and wait for their food to arrive within minutes – no hassle, no dealing with a cash register, and virtually eliminating the risk of getting mayonnaise on that sandwich when you asked for no mayo, damn it.
No smartphone? No problem – Panera will also be adding kiosks to their stores, letting customers walk up and tap on a touch screen with the whole menu, allowing you to order and pay from there as well.
On top of that, Panera will now allow customers to schedule orders up to five days in advance, and pick it up at a designated box at the time of your choosing. Panera’s new revamp will likely get customers in and out faster, shorten wait times, improve the quality of orders (which had been somewhat slipping as of late, much to the company’s chagrin), and just making this a more enjoyable experience for all.
Subway, your move.
Putting it up for sale
Pumped to get your hands on a Google Glass handset, but haven’t had much luck getting your name in as a registered Google Glass Explorer for a prototype unit? Well, April 15th will be a very important day for you then – starting at 9 AM EST (6 AM PST) on the 15th, Google will offer their prototype units up for sale to the general public “until supplies last” for its regular price of $1,500.
Of course, Google won’t have an unlimited stock pile here, so if you’ll want one you’ll probably have to set an alarm and get in early to really have a chance. But now you, dear reader, are informed – and because you’re informed, you can get Glass. Or save the $1,500 and don’t. Your choice.
Source: Google (Google+)
He designed the iPhone, have you heard of it?
Apple has officially announced following a scoop by 9to5Mac‘s Mark Gurman this afternoon that Greg Christie, Apple’s Human Interface Vice President and also known as the man who designed most of the concepts behind the user experience that would become a staple of the iPhone, and thus the modern smartphone as a whole, would be leaving the company after 20 years.
Greg Christie was essentially the head of design for all of Apple’s major platforms, including OS X and iOS, for years now. His influence was limitless – without Christie, both the iPhone and Mac OS X would look very, very different today. Christie will be sticking around Apple for a greater part of the rest of 2014, and following his departure Apple’s Senior Vice President of Design Jony Ive, who famously took the lead in redesigning iOS 7 last year, will be taking on Christie’s responsibilities.
While Mark Gurman also reported that Greg Christie’s decision to leave was influenced by growing discord between him and Jony Ive, DaringFireball‘s John Gruber says that this was not at all the case, saying, “Christie and Ive may not see eye to eye on UI design style, but his departure isn’t nearly as contentious as Mark Gurman’s report at 9to5Mac implies. The basic gist I’ve heard is that Christie is a guy who’s been in a high-pressure, high-profile job for 18 years, most of it reporting to Steve Jobs. He’s made a lot of money and is ready to enjoy it.”
You know what Mr. Christie? I don’t blame you – I’d be ready to smell the roses after such a long time in Cupertino as well. Let’s hope Ive is up for the challenge.
Now on Windows Update
Microsoft’s next big update to their desktop Windows platform, Windows 8.1 Update 1, has just been released onto Windows Update. The update, which Microsoft officially announced at Build last week, significantly improves the Windows 8.1 experience for keyboard and mouse users, bringing new features such as “Modern” Windows Store application docking into the desktop taskbar, traditional Windows control buttons (such as close and minimize) on “Modern” applications, classic style Context Menus in the Start Screen, and more.
While Windows 8.1 Update 1 has only just been made official and released, we took a look at a pre-release build of Windows 8.1 a little while ago before the Build conference. Be sure to take a more in depth look at whats new in Windows 8.1 Update 1 by navigating here, and head on over to Windows Update to get updating – it’s worth it, trust me.
Conference still slated for June 25th
Google has today announced that registration for its annual I/O Developer Conference has been pushed back a week, with sign ups now slated to begin April 15th. Google fans will be happy to know that the conference itself will remain scheduled at June 25th, so no delay there.
Google is expected to be preparing to launch a new version of Android for smartphones, as well as share more information on Android Wear for smartwatches as well as the company’s upcoming plans for the TV with a new product known as Android TV.
Google I/O regularly sees a huge rush of requests for attendance, so be sure to get in early on April 15th if you’re interested in having a place there. unfortunately (or fortunately?) for you, Google isn’t running any sort of lottery system here, so if you snooze you lose.