SAMSUNG Remote Test Lab: Test Android Apps on Real Devices for Free

For the past couple of months, I've been working on a much-delayed update to my Android application Scribblify.  The original Android version was released back in early 2013 and hadn't been updated on Google Play since then. Although it paled in comparison to the iOS counterpart, the first Android version still received positive reviews and was downloaded 200,000 times. Having released a major 4.0 update to the iOS version earlier this year, it was time to bring the Android version up-to-speed.

One of the greater challenges experienced with Android development occurs when it comes time to test. I previously wrote about the increasingly fragmented iOS platform, but even with a handful of different iOS devices sporting different resolutions and technical specs, nothing quite compares to Android device dispersion. In my updated Android app, for instance, I support all Android devices from API Level 15 (Android 4.0.3) up. According to Google Play, this makes the app compatible with 9,098 Google-certified devices. This list encompasses at least four years of devices including phones, tablets, phablets and more. Understandably, with such a large range of devices comes an equally large range of technical specs. Read Full Article

Review: BioSport™ Biometric Headphones with Heart Rate Monitor

SMS Audio BioSport Headphones

When I attended IDF 2014 in San Francisco, one of the most prominently hyped products was the then-forthcoming BioSport™ earbud set with integrated heart rate monitor. There was an impressively large and aesthetically awesome area of the Moscone Center dedicated to it. The headphones, produced by SMS Audio, were featured in the keynote and even Google co-founder Sergey Brin made a random appearance to participate in some yoga as part of its promotion.

For attendees, the coolest part came during the keynote when it was announced we'd all be getting these $150 headphones for free. Months passed with no word, but right before the Christmas holiday a mysterious package appeared on my doorstep. Inside contained the message: "As announced during Brian Krzanich's opening Keynote, and as a thank you for attending IDF14, you are receiving your own pair of SMS Audio BioSport In-Ear Headphones, powered by Intel.  The in-ear headphones include a heart rate monitor so you can listen to music and monitor your heart rate at the same time." Read Full Article

Review: Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter

A potpourri of HD wireless broadcasting technologies have emerged over the past several years. This should come as no surprise given the increase in mobile device usage and heightened portability initiatives by all the big players.  Recent Apple products all support AirPlay for wireless broadcasting, which is delightful unless you need to branch off into non-Apple territory.  Intel has long promoted its own Wireless Display (WiDi) tech, and put a huge emphasis on all things wireless during its IDF 2014 keynote—expanding the mix to include WiGig (wireless peripherals connectivity) and Rezence (wireless charging technology).

Then there is Miracast, a protocol and certification program by the Wi-Fi Alliance for transmitting HD signal between devices, wirelessly.  Miracast has become quite prominent, with over 3,400 devices now Miracast-certified.  Modern Android, Blackberry and Windows phones support the Wi-Fi Direct protocol and thus can embrace Miracast for wireless streaming.  Properly equipped laptops and PCs, especially those running Windows 8.1+, can also take advantage of the Miracast protocol to mirror and broadcast the display to other devices, no cables needed. Intel's WiDi technology has, in essence, been merged into Microsoft's Miracast implementation of Windows 8.1.  Therefore, any Windows 8.1 device that supports WiDi 3.5+ will also support Miracast for desktop. Read Full Article