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  1. Hi All, Just wondering if Nokia with Canonical makes Ubuntu Touch Devices, does people love it and buy to help support Ubuntu Touch development? My wish is that Nokia should join hands with Canonical to make Ubuntu Devices. If that happens, all lazy s/w app giants will create apps supporting Ubuntu Touch platform. I'm calling s/w app giants as lazy bcoz if they would've supported Ubuntu Touch earlier, the OS could've been overtaking Android & Windows Phones(or Windows 10 Mobile) by now. All Nokia & Ubuntu/Linux fans(incl. myself) or devs out there, please suggest Nokia to create Ubuntu Devices in future ASAP. Please vote and provide feedback in comments(if any). Members please note that I'm referring to the future and not now. I'm not a fool to ask for/suggest a change in the first year of re-emerged Nokia. @steven36 & @teodz1984: Please read the desc carefully before providing comments.
  2. MyPhoneExplorer is a freeware phone management software, useful for those who need to explore their phones. It works with Sony Ericsson and Android mobile phones (running Android 1.6 or higher). This application can connect to mobile devices using an USB cable, wifi, infrared or Bluetooth connections. As soon as a connection has been established, you can perform all kind of actions (listed at features section below) related to backup, explorer and personal information manager. It works with almost all Microsoft Windows versions in both ways: portable or installer. Linux users can run this software using the Wine emulator (tested with Ubuntu Linux version 12.10). Features: sync your mobile phone with other Desktop based apps such as Microsoft Outlook (including Express), Mozilla Thunderbird, Sunbird, Lotus Notes, Google Mail and others. sync your calendar entries with Microsoft Windows Calendar, Rainlendar, Tobit David, Google Calendar and net shared calendars. bidirectional filesync with the phone set your phone clock based on atom time. enhanced "Filebrowser" (you can use it to move and rename files and also for the management of the external storage) and "Control Phone" feature. manage and edit profiles, SMS, memory status, phone monitor, call lists, handle calls, automatic photo sync, create your own backups using a WiFi, USB-Cable or Bluetooth connection. it work with a large collection of mobile phones especially those from Sony Ericsson and those that runs Android 1.6 or higher edition. the only limitation applies to low-cost phones which does not have a PC-interface and the Symbian based (examples: W950i, W960i, G700, G900, P1i, M600i) that require the PC-Suite to be MyPhoneExplorer 1.8.8 released 2017-01-03 Sync for contacts and notes with plain vCard/vNote-files (local or on a remote server) Sync with internal Sync-database - this makes it possible to sync several devices to each other MyPhoneExplorer Client is launched automatical when you connect via WiFi, the phone wakes up from standby also automatically Better compatibility with Windows 10 Better compatibility with Android 6 Backup wizzard revised many bugfixes and alot smaller enhancements Website: http://www.fjsoft.at/en/home.php Download: 7.81 Mb Android Client: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.fjsoft.myphoneexplorer.client .paf Portable: 5.19 Mb Site: https://www.datafilehost.com Sharecode[?]: /d/ddabaee6
  3. Android User Locked Out Of Google After Moving Cities Image Courtesy: Techworm An Android user has been locked out of his Google account apparently because he moved cities, according to a post on Reddit. The explanation offered by Google support staff was that since his address details differed, billing information with Google wasn't current and hence the user's purchases could look fraudulent. The user in question does not know for sure that this is the reason; during his interactions with Google support to find out why he had been locked out, he was told that When asked what he could do, he was initially directed by Google staff to a site where he had to scan his driver's licence and credit card and told that he would have to wait 24 hours to get his account unlocked. But after this time passed, he was told that the account would not be unlocked and Google would not tell him why. He was advised to abandon his old account and start a fresh one. However, this meant he could not use the credit card that he had used on the old account and would have to obtain a new one to continue using Google's services. All his previous purchases would not be transferred to the new account, he was told. An email he sent to Google support resulted in the following reply: Source
  4. Nokia's Return to Smartphone Business Confirmed for 2017 An official slide from the company has spilled the beans Apparently, an official slide from Nokia's Capital Markets Day presentation has just leaked online and the folks over at NPU have been quick to report on it. The slide show Nokia's main topics for the next two years and the current one. While in 2016 Nokia focused on the launch of its incredible OZO VR camera, Withings acquisition and licensing its phone brand to HMD, the next two year will be even more exciting for the Finnish company. For example, in 2017 Nokia plans to strengthen its presence in the VR market, but it remains to be seen how it will be able to do that. Another important topic for Nokia fans, the comeback of the company to the smartphone business is happening next year as well. The Finnish giant notes in the presentation slide that “Nokia brand's return to smartphones” is to take place in 2017. Moreover, the company plans to expand patent licensing in mobile, automotive and consumer electronics during the same year. As for 2018, Nokia is going to work towards licensing its own VR technology, and hopes to grow considerably in remote patient care in Digital Health. The Finnish company also mentions that it will continue the patent licensing growth and diversification throughout 2018 as well. If you're a Nokia fans, 2017 is definitely going to be a very interesting year for you. At least two Android smartphones are expected to be unveiled in the first half of the year, but these won't be the only handsets Nokia will launch in 2017. The only thing that remains to clarify is when exactly the first Nokia-branded smartphones in a long while will be officially unveiled. Some bet on Mobile World Congress, which is scheduled to take place at the end of February, while other are more pessimist claim the first Nokia smartphones won't be announced until April/May. Source
  5. Screenshots: Changelog: v6.8.5.BETA_B1610021: Fixed uploading to Mega cloud. Links: Homepage XDA Homepage Skin Gallery Download - QR Code Mirror
  6. Trend Micro Offers $250K to Hack iPhone in Pwn2Own Contest A new iteration of the P2wn2Own mobile hacking contest takes aim at iOS and Android. The mobile Pwn2Own hacking contest is back for 2016, this time offering top prize of $250,000 to any security researcher who forces an Apple iPhone to unlock. The Pwn2Own contest has undergone a bit of a transition as Hewlett Packard Enterprise sold the Zero Day Initiative (ZDI) group that sponsors the event to Trend Micro earlier this year. The browser edition of the Pwn2Own event was held in March and was jointly sponsored by HPE and Trend Micro. The mobile Pwn2Own 2016 contest being held next month will be the first time a Pwn2Own event doesn't benefit from HPE sponsorship. "To us, it's still Pwn2Own," Brian Gorenc, senior manager of vulnerability research at Trend Micro, told eWEEK. "We always hope each contest brings us something new we haven't seen before, but if you've seen the contest, it should look very familiar." During the 2016 Pwn2Own browser event, which was held at the CanSecWest conference in Vancouver, ZDI awarded a total of $460,000 in prize money to researchers for publicly demonstrating new zero-day exploits in web browsers. The mobile Pwn2Own event will be held Oct. 26-27 at the PacSec Security Conference in Tokyo, and the total available prize pool is set to top $500,000. For the 2016 mobile event, ZDI is asking researchers to target three specific mobile devices: the Apple iPhone 6x, the Google Nexus 6p and the Samsung Galaxy Note7. Across all of the targeted devices, ZDI is tasking researchers with a number of challenges. The first is to obtain sensitive information from a device. ZDI is awarding $50,000 to those who exploit a device to get access to sensitive information on the iPhone or the Google Nexus. A researcher who is able to get sensitive information off a Galaxy will be awarded $35,000. Another challenge at mobile Pwn2Own 2016 is to install a rogue application on a targeted device. A $125,000 prize will be awarded for the installation of a rogue app on the iPhone; on the Google Nexus, the reward is $100,000; and on the Samsung Galaxy, $60,000. "Each phone will be running the latest operating system available at the time of the contest, and all available patches will also be applied," Gorenc said. "This can lead to some late nights as ZDI researchers update phones in the days leading up to the contest, but we feel it's best to have the latest and greatest targeted." Gorenc said all of the targeted devices will be in their default configuration. On iOS, that means Pwn2Own contestants must target Safari, as this is the default browser and most common, realistic scenario for users of that device. In the past, Pwn2Own contestants have demonstrated many WebKit browser rendering engine related vulnerabilities. WebKit is the core rendering engine behind Safari and has many components that are also used in Google's Chrome. "The threat landscape shifts so much from contest to contest that it's hard to predict what component will be targeted," he said. "WebKit will likely make an appearance, but we're hoping to see some new techniques and research as well." For the installation of the rogue application, Gorenc said that ZDI has no requirements for the app. "We will leave it up to the contestant to express their creativity during the public demonstration," he said. iPhone Unlock The biggest single prize at the mobile Pwn2Own 2016 event goes to the researcher who is able to successfully force an iPhone to unlock. The challenge of unlocking an iPhone has been a hot topic in recent months. The FBI reportedly paid as much as $1.3 million to bypass the iPhone lock screen. And Apple started its own bug bounty program, with a $200,000 prize, while security firm Exodus Intelligence will pay a top prize of $500,000 for an iOS zero-day flaw. Gorenc believes offering $250,000 for an iPhone unlock exploit is a good size prize. "We feel this amount is not a bad payday for what will clearly be a significant amount of research needed to accomplish this hack," he said. "Along with the money, the researcher will get the recognition that comes with winning Pwn2Own." In the end, Gorenc said, it's the marketplace that will let ZDI know if $250,000 is a fair price; he's optimistic that someone will actually attempt to publicly force an iPhone to unlock. "Finally, by reporting this through ZDI, the bugs will actually get fixed by the vendor," Gorenc said. "That's better than some of the alternatives." Source
  7. Is It A Good Idea To Charge Your Smartphone Overnight? Will Charging Your Smartphone Overnight Damage It? Here’s What You Should Know There are chances that many of us plug in our smartphone for charging while going to bed at night, so that you do not have a fully drained device or low battery while rushing to work or travelling, etc. If you think that charging your device overnight is a good idea, you may want to think again. If you plan to upgrade your smartphone every two years, leaving your device to charge overnight will not do much damage to your battery. Experts say majority of the time those people are not going to notice much damage to their smartphone batteries before they start wishing for a new device. However, frequent charging does damage the lithium-ion batteries in our smartphones. And it’s not because they can be overcharged, said Edo Campos, a spokesman for Anker, which produces smartphone chargers. “Smartphones are, in fact, smart,” Mr. Campos said. “They know when to stop charging.” In other words, smartphones are designed to understand when the battery is at capacity, and should at that point stop absorbing additional electrical current. According to a report by The New York Times, Android smartphones and Apple iPhones are equipped with chips that protect them from absorbing excess electrical current once they are fully charged. Theoretically, any damage from charging your smartphone overnight with an official charger, or a trustworthy off-brand charger, should be negligible. The report stated that most smartphones use technology that allows their batteries to charge faster, but this process leads to lithium-ion and lithium-polymer batteries rusting faster. If a user wants to preserve the life of their lithium-ion battery beyond the typical lifetime of a smartphone – usually two years – they can try using a charger made for a less-powerful device, stated the report. Source
  8. Explosive Start for Samsung Galaxy Note 7: More Phones Catch Fire While Charging Buy a Note 7, and get a free fireworks show in your bedroom If you’re an iPhone user, and you know what we’re talking about already, try not to smile too much because this is getting serious, and it involves severe damage that could actually lead to people getting injured. You'd better put firemen on speed dial A report that has recently reached the web reveals that a Samsung Galaxy Note 7 caught fire while charging, even though the owner was using the USB Type-C charger that Samsung itself included in the box. From the photos posted by the owner, it’s very clear that the phone exploded on the left side, but why it happened is yet to be disclosed. Obviously, Samsung has all the reasons in the world to be worried, so they have already contacted the owner to offer compensation and investigate. And now it seems that Samsung has even more reasons to be worried because it turns out that a similar explosion impacted not one, not two, but several Galaxy Note 7s. Photos and reports that have reached the web in the last few hours seem to point to similar cases, but it’s worth mentioning that we can’t tell exactly how many they are at the moment. Also, it’s hard to say whether some of the photos that have been posted lately and that allegedly refer to different cases are actually showing the first Note 7 that caught fire. A report coming from BusinessKorea reportedly has a new case of an explosive Note 7, and it includes information that confirms Samsung is aware of the problem and is now investigating. “There was another explosion of the Galaxy Note 7. It was my friend’s phone. A Samsung employee checked the site and he is currently in talks over the compensation with Samsung. You should use its original charger just in case and leave the phone far away from where you are while charging,” the aforementioned source writes citing someone who also got to see fireworks in their bedroom thanks to the explosive Note 7. Happening with original Samsung charger In most of the cases, owners who claim that their Note 7s caught fire say they used the genuine charger that Samsung offered in the box, so if this is true, the Koreans might really have a big problem here. There are people out there who have already decided to hold onto their purchases just because they’re afraid the Note 7 can explode for them too. And as compelling as Samsung’s buy-a-Note-7-get-a-free-fireworks-show offer might seem to be, the Korean firm is on thin ice right now. And it’s not all because of the damages that its explosive device could cause, but also because Apple is getting ready to take the wraps off the iPhone 7 in exactly one week. The Note 7 is a direct competitor to the iPhone 7, and it’s pretty clear that these reports are hurting its sales. For more evidence of exploding Notes, you can check out the gallery below, as well as the video after the jump - they claim to be from separate cases, but as mentioned, this cannot be confirmed right now. And, Timothy, you'd better stop smiling, you do know that this happened with some iPhones too, don’t you? Source
  9. Tonight Mr. Robot is Going to Reveal ‘Dream Device For Hackers’ Mr. Robot is the rare show that provides a realistic depiction of hacks and vulnerabilities that are at the forefront of cyber security. This is the reason it’s been the most popular TV show of its kind. Throughout season 1 and season 2, we have seen that connected devices are the entry point of choice of Elliot and fsociety to breach networks and traditional security controls. Pwn Phone On Mr. Robot Show In this week’s episode, Elliot uses a Pwnie Express Pwn Phone, which he describes as “a dream device for pentester,” to run a custom script he has written to take over someone else’s phone. Security pros have long know about the Pwn Phone as a powerful mobile platform for penetration testing and security assessments, so it is not surprising to see it on Mr. Robot. The coolest part is that Pwnie Express is giving away a Pwn Phone, just like the one used in the show. The Pwn Phone is a mobile pentesting device that makes it incredibly easy to evaluate wired, wireless and Bluetooth networks. It is built on Kali Linux that comes pre-packaged with over 100 built-in and ‘one-click’ tools, and it can run third-party scripts. The Pwn Pad exists for security pros who want a tablet version, and it’s also available via the Android Open Pwn Project. The Pwn Phone is the latest in a series of connected device hacks on Mr. Robot that have included a Femtocell, a Raspberry Pi, and Bluetooth sniffers, along with the hack of an E-Corp exec’s connected home and the crucial meltdown of E-Corp’s data center by using a connected HVAC system. These are real threats that are being exploited by criminals to gain unauthorized access and steal data from companies today. In the past, Pwnie has made it clear that they do not condone the criminal use of penetration testing tools and devices. But pentesting is important, and having the tools to do it properly is part of that process. Sometimes you need to break things to find and fix serious security vulnerabilities in the devices and networks that permeate nearly every facet of our daily lives. The bad guys have every tool available to them; white hats should be equally well-equipped. And as for what Elliot does in the show? He’s a pretty well-established gray character. Is he good? Or is he bad? Either way, it was pretty cool. Source
  10. New W3C Proximity Sensor API Can Be Used for User Fingerprinting New W3C API brings new fears regarding user privacy As mobile devices evolved, so did their technical capabilities. Nowadays, when you lift your phone to your ear, the screen usually goes dark because the device uses the camera to tell if you've put it next to your ear. Rear and back cameras, movement sensors, accelerometers, and many other high-tech sensors can let a smartphone, tablet, or Internet of Things device know where you are in the room, or where are other objects like walls, doors, etc.. Because most of these sensors provide API interfaces, the W3C has begun work on a generic JavaScript-based API that will let websites query your device, and tell it how far are nearby objects. The W3C describes this new feature as below: New W3C API could be used for user fingerprinting Lukasz Olejnik, security & privacy technology engineer for the French Institute for Research in Computer Science and Automation (INRIA), and a W3C "Invited Expert" claims that this new API might pose a threat to user privacy in the future. Olejnik claims that threat actors can use (malicious) code embedded on a website to leak information about the phone's user and his behavior. He says that this data could be used to fingerprint users, a technique in which advertisers might also be very interested in using. An attacker could use the W3C Proximity Sensor API to gather information about how the user interacts with the device, the frequency at which he interacts with it, interaction patterns, or mechanics for holding the device in different positions, close to his head, or the distance from his face. Olejnik: There's no need for verbose distance results The problem, he says, comes from the fact that the new Proximity Sensor API allows two query modes. One that uses "near" and "far" distance indicators, and one that uses verbose data, in centimeters (cm). Olejnik says that there's no need for the second. "Is there a need to provide a verbose proximity readout at all?" he writes on his blog. "For example, is providing readouts of proximity (distance) value up to 150 cm necessary?" Besides limiting access to verbose data, the INRIA researcher also recommends that the Proximity Sensor API should also be subject to user permissions. The device must ask the user for this data, and they should be able to review what websites accessed this API and how often. Olejnik's criticism, which is dated August 8, has been taken into account. The latest version of the W3C Permission Sensor API features support for browser permissions, according to a draft dated August 26. The verbose distance results have been kept. Work on the W3C Proximity Sensor API is still ongoing. Source
  11. Opera VPN Launches For Android Opera Software released its free VPN application for Android today after making it available to iOS devices earlier this year. The company's journey as a VPN provider started with its acquisition of SurfEasy VPN. Opera Software promoted services of SurfEasy shortly thereafter in the Opera desktop browser, and launched a free browser proxy back in April 2016. The iOS application followed in May, and today saw the release of the Android application. Opera VPN for Android is a VPN client that is free to use. It is provided by SurfEasy, an Opera company. Tip: Check out the privacy policy and terms of use before you start using the service. Basically, what it states is that you may not use it to break the law or the rights of others, that the service may be limited, modified or discontinued at any time, and that you may be contacted for limited marketing purposes. Opera VPN for Android Installation of the application is straightforward. Since it is a VPN, you will receive a request to set up a VPN connection on the device. You must accept it or won't be able to use the service at all. The app displays a short introduction to the features that it makes available. Basically, it offers three features that you may activate from within the app: Connect to the VPN network. Opera VPN connects to the closest region automatically, but displays options to switch the region once connected. Regions that were available during the test were Canada, USA, Netherlands, Germany, and Singapore. Wi-Fi Security. You may use this feature to test the security of the wireless network your Android device is connected to. Opera VPN displays the name of the WLAN and its ID, and whether it is protected or not on the screen. The test performs additional look ups and awards a security score at the end (one when connected regularly, and one when connected to Opera VPN). Guardian. Guardian can be activated to block ad trackers when you are online. The connection speed was quite good during tests but mileage may vary based on the location you connect to the service, the region you connect to, load at that time and other factors. A quick test playing videos on YouTube and other services showed that playback was fluent and without buffering issues or other issues. Since it is a VPN app that runs in the background, all applications you use tunnel their traffic through it. Closing Words Opera VPN is a free VPN app for Android that does not look that different than other free VPN apps for Android. The inclusion of the WiFi security test -- with the foreseeable result that the connection is more secure when you use Opera VPN -- and the system-wide tracker blocker are nice to have features. If you trust Opera Software, there is little reason not to use the company's VPN applications as well. Paid solutions on the other hand offer better privacy, whereas other free solutions usually don't. Source
  12. Spyware Sold to Governments Behind Recent iOS Zero-Days Apple fixes three zero-days used by Pegasus spyware According to the two organizations, the zero-days were part of a software suite called Pegasus, developed and sold by Israeli company NSO Group to governments around the world, which deployed it against targets of interest. Pegasus, described as surveillance software developed for law enforcement agencies, is nothing different from spyware developed and sold on underground hacking forums. Governments, security vendors, and news agencies knew of Pegasus and NSO's existence for many years, but the company has always been outshined by its more powerful competitors, Gamma Group, which sells FinFisher, and HackingTeam which sells the RCS surveillance package. Apple patched zero-days that enabled Pegasus spying features Apple released a fix today to address Pegasus features that allowed it to spy on iOS users without them ever being aware. These features were powered by three zero-days that allowed a remote attacker to compromise iOS devices by fooling a victim into accessing a malicious website. Once the zero-day exploit code was executed, the attacker would use the Pegasus software to control the victim's iPhone or iPad. According to Lookout, the attackers had full control over the device, and could exfiltrate data, listen on conversations via the microphone, detect the user's GPS position, follow IM conversations, and many more others. Zero-Day Description Exploit Capability CVE-2016-4655 Information leak in Kernel – A kernel base mapping vulnerability that leaks information to the attacker allowing him to calculate the kernel’s location in memory. An application may be able to disclose kernel memory CVE-2016-4657 Kernel Memory corruption leads to Jailbreak – 32 and 64 bit iOS kernel-level vulnerabilities that allow the attacker to silently jailbreak the device and install surveillance software. An application may be able to execute arbitrary code with kernel privileges CVE-2016-4658 Memory Corruption in Webkit – A vulnerability in the Safari WebKit that allows the attacker to compromise the device when the user clicks on a link. Visiting a maliciously crafted website may lead to arbitrary code execution "Pegasus is the most sophisticated attack we’ve seen on any endpoint because it takes advantage of how integrated mobile devices are in our lives and the combination of features only available on mobile," the Lookout team explained. A further, in-depth analysis of Pegasus also revealed traces of a kernel mapping table that has values that target previous iOS version, way back to iOS 7, meaning the spyware was used for years without being detected until this past month. Meet Ahmed Mansoor, the most spied on activist in the world One of the people targeted with Pegasus, and the one that detected something wrong and led to the discovery of the three zero-days, was Ahmed Mansoor, a human rights activist from the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Coincidentally, Mansoor was also targeted in the past with both FinFinsher and RCS spyware. As such, he was able to quickly recognize a phishing lure he received via SMS, which promised new details about torture practices in the UAE. Mansoor forwarded the SMS messages to Citizen Lab, an investigative interdisciplinary laboratory at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto, Canada, specialized in political cyber-espionage. Pegasus software also sold to Mexico and Kenya Recognizing the sophisticated campaign behind this SMS message, Citizen Lab brought in Lookout to investigate the technical side of the attack. Lookout discovered the three zero-days, while Citizen Lab connected the zero-days to the Pegasus software and the NSO Group, an Israeli company bought by US firm Francisco Partners in 2014. Citizen Lab tracked down the Pegasus software and discovered export licenses for various governments. The organization tied NSO's Pegasus suite used against a Mexican journalist who uncovered corruption by Mexico's President, and a few attacks against unknown targets in Kenya. "While these spyware tools are developed in democracies, they continue to be sold to countries with notorious records of abusive targeting of human rights defenders," the Citizen Lab team explains. "Such sales occur despite the existence of applicable export controls." Lookout provides a technical look at the three iOS zero-days fixed in iOS 9.3.5 in its report, while Citizen Lab's report focused on the morals and political background behind these recent attacks. Source
  13. WhatsApp Is To Hand Your Phone Number To Facebook Roses are red, violets are blue, Facebook knows all that you think, say and do WhatsApp has updated its terms and privacy policy for the first time in four years as part of parent company Facebook’s plans to generate cash through app users' data. While WhatsApp has been a separate service from Facebook since its acquisition for $16bn two years ago, the companies are now going to enjoy a cosier relationship. If you’re a WhatsApp user you can expect the app to soon export more of your information to Facebook as the megacorp seeks to bleed some revenue from businesses by allowing them to advertise to you, without using third-party banner advertisements and spam. This will not affect the privacy of the content of users’ messages. As WhatsApp integrates the Signal messaging protocol, messages are protected with end-to-end encryption. “We won’t post or share your WhatsApp number with others,” the business stated today, “including on Facebook, and we still won’t sell, share or give your phone number to advertisers.” This suggests that WhatsApp might yet offer itself as a platform for business to contact you through, but the company itself has announced that “by coordinating more with Facebook, we'll be able to do things like track basic metrics about how often people use our services and better fight spam on WhatsApp.” That sounds lovely, of course, until the statement continued: “And by connecting your phone number with Facebook's systems, Facebook can offer better friend suggestions and show you more relevant ads if you have an account with them. For example, you might see an ad from a company you already work with, rather than one from someone you've never heard of.” Users are not able to opt out of this data sharing, although you can choose not to allow to be shared for the purpose of improving their experience with advertisements and product experiences on Facebook. WhatsApp is seeking to integrate features that regularly take place over SMS at the moment: "Whether it's hearing from your bank about a potentially fraudulent transaction, or getting notified by an airline about a delayed flight, many of us get this information elsewhere, including in text messages and phone calls. We want to test these features in the next several months, but need to update our terms and privacy policy to do so." Source Related Alternate Source Articles: WhatsApp to Share Your Data with Facebook — You have 30 Days to Stop It Use WhatsApp? Get ready to receive marketing messages from firms WhatsApp to give users' phone numbers to Facebook for targeted ads WhatsApp to share your user data with Facebook WhatsApp to share user data including phone numbers with Facebook WhatsApp does about face, will serve ads in Facebook-owned app WhatsApp to Share User Phone Number with Facebook For Advertising Block WhatsApp from sharing (most) data with Facebook
  14. The Future Of Android Likely Means The Death Of Android Opinion - Android has a lot of problems, and Google knows this, and is already making plans for the death of Android. On the face of it, Android seems like a very successful platform. It's the operating system that powers 85 percent of the new smartphones shipped, and, along with iOS, has decisively crushed the competition. But Android is also plagued by dogged problems that Google can't seem to solve. First off, there's the issue of fragmentation, which means that developers have to create software that will work reliably on many hundreds of different devices from dozens of manufacturers. Sure, developers could just focus on devices from the big players - and some, such as Salesforce, are already doing just that - but that defeats the purpose of having a platform in the first place. Then there's the update problem. Google has a yearly release schedule in place for Android, but it takes the new version a good part of a year to break the 10 percent usage mark. And it takes about four years for a release to fully penetrate the ecosystem. Four years is a crazy long time in tech. While Google is speedy at getting new releases onto its Nexus hardware, it can take months for owners of Android devices from other manufacturers to start seeing the update. And many never see the update. In fact, outside of buying a Nexus device, the easiest way to get your hands on a new Android release is to buy a new device. And you wonder why Android smartphone sales are so buoyant. So, dominant market share aside, it's clear that Android has suffered from some extremely severe problems. Many of the problems facing Android come down to it being open source. Android is all about being open, which means that once Google has released a new version, the OEMs and carriers are free to tinker with it to their heart's content. That then results in both the fragmentation (OEMs loading the code onto any and every device form factor they can think of), and the problems with updates (Google can't push Android direct to devices because heavens knows what modifications and tinkering have been done, both cosmetic and structural, to the code). Another problem with Android is that it's based on Linux, and Linux is both old and plagued by legal issues. The Linux kernel was never designed for smartphones and IoT devices, and yet here we are shoe-horning it onto these devices. Sure, the kernel's been furiously tweaked, but tweaking can only go so far, especially when you're trying to optimize power consumption or when a platform that can run in real-time is required (the Linux kernel isn't real-time, and instead uses a scheduler). Also, all that legacy code is the perfect breeding ground for bugs and vulnerabilities. The legal issues, specifically intellectual property licensing issues, are a real thorn in the side for those making Android devices. Companies such as Microsoft pulling in billions of dollars in licensing fees from Android hardware OEMs, which eats into the already razor-thin profit margins. A totally new, built from the ground-up platform could free OEMs from being shackled to expensive patent licensing deals. And Google is working on new platforms. Take, for example, Project Fuchsia. Sure, it's early days, but it's clear that Google is looking to an era beyond the Linux kernel, and the end of the Linux kernel ultimately means the end of Android. This operating system not only could be built from the ground up so as to be optimized for today's devices, but it would also be free from IP headaches. It could also be modular in nature allowing for it to be customized for different applications - from the desktop and laptops to smartphones and even small IoT devices - allowing for a truly unified platform. Google could license this platform to hardware developers, as opposed to using the open source model. Licensing would give Google greater control over the hardware that Android was loaded onto. No more junk that can barely run the OS. No more devices being released running years-old releases with no hope of an update. This would truly be a platform for the 21st century. Don't expect this to happen anytime soon as operating systems take time to develop. But equally, don't think that Android is going to be around forever. Android has some serious shortcomings that Google is well aware of, and the fact that it isn't making much effort to fix these issues is perhaps the strongest evidence - along with the company's declared interest in developing new platforms - that such work is ongoing. How long until we see an Android replacement? I'd guesstimate something in the region of five years, but a company such as Google has the resources to make it happen much quicker. But it could also lose interest in the idea and decide that Android is good enough as it is. Source
  15. Photo Filter App Prisma Goes Offline Prisma, the photo filter application for Android and iOS devices that turns your photos into artwork, is now capable of handling the processing offline on iOS, with Android following soon. Prisma is like many of the other photo filter applications available for mobile devices. Take a photo or load an image from local storage, and apply one of the available filters to it to turn it into a completely different picture. What sets Prisma apart from comparable solutions such as Instagram is the focus on filters that look more like art than a photo with a slightly different color set. Prisma is as easy to use as any other filtering app. It displays a list of filters in a line at the bottom of the screen, and applies the selected filter when you tap on it. That process required a network connection up until now as the processing was done server-side. While that meant less processing on the device itself, which is good for its battery, it meant as well that you could not use Prisma at all if the device was not connected to the Internet. Also, photos had to be uploaded and downloaded to the Prisma server, which used up precious bandwidth and added to the time it took to see the processed photo on the device's screen. The servers of the service were swarmed with requests, especially at the beginning which added to the processing time as well. This is all going to change with the most recent update of Prisma. Released for iOS already and coming for Android soon is offline processing. The change log on iTunes reads that Prisma is offline now, and that the majority of Prisma styles will no longer need an Internet connection. I'll update the article as soon as the Android version is released to provide you with information on that, and especially on the filters that still require an Internet connection. Good news for Prisma users is that they may use the app now without Internet connection on iOS, and soon also on Android. The servers that did the processing up until now, and are still handling it on Android, are not just turned off once the move completes. Prisma seems to have intentions to offer similar functionality for video, and will use the servers for video processing instead. Now You: Do you use an app like Prisma on your phone or tablet? Source
  16. MIT Creates Mobile Phones Which Assemble Themselves The devices can pull themselves together in less than a minute. Researchers from MIT have created a mobile device which can assemble itself in a matter of moments. The prototype, developed by scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)'s Self-Assembly Lab, is composed of six separate parts which assemble into two different mobile devices. Even in unstable environments -- such as being tossed around a tumbler -- the device is able to assemble itself within a few minutes. As reported by Fast Co.Design, the principle behind the self-assembly device is simplicity. To begin with, the tumbler has to be going fast enough that the components meet but do not break. The device's components all have lock-and-key mechanisms which, like puzzle pieces, only allow the proper connections to take place and rejects the wrong ones. Finally, the parts need to "stick," and so the team used magnets to make sure the right parts were attracted to each other. Skylar Tibbits, one of the researchers working on the project, told the publication: If such technology was adopted mainstream, it could have serious implications for the manufacturing industry. MIT says the cost of automaton could be reduced at scale, removing the need to shift labor overseas -- or have workers altogether. Either way, jobs could eventually be replaced with automaton and assembly-line staff at electronics factories could one day be a thing of the past. However, the researchers say the possibilities for these kinds of designs are limitless and could give vendors more freedom to design and create better, more innovative products. "Right now the phone is predetermined, and we're using this process to assemble that phone," Tibbits said. "But imagine you take a circuit board and you have different logical building blocks and those logical building blocks can be tumbled around -- you can have different functionalities." MIT is not the only institution exploring the possibilities of modular consumer products. This year, Google revealed that Project Ara, the tech giant's modular smartphone, will be released in 2017. Source Alternate Source - A Cellphone That Can Self-assemble Itself
  17. Artist Sylvia Ritter Painted All 25 Ubuntu Linux Mascots and They're Astonishing - Exclusive The wallpapers are suitable for phone and tablet It's not the first time we talk here about Sylvia Ritter, as back in March 2016 we published a story with the Ubuntu Linux wallpapers she managed to paint using the powerful, open-source, and cross-platform Krita digital painting software, but now Mrs. Ritter finished this unique project and unleashed all 25 Ubuntu mascots, or animals as she likes to call them. "Hello Softpedia! I've just painted all 25 Ubuntu animals. They are also great phone and tablet wallpapers," says Sylvia Ritter in an email, exclusively for Softpedia. "All known 25 animals have just been completed, starting with the Warty Warthog (Ubuntu 4.10) and finishing with the latest release, Yakkety Yak (16.10). The series will likely continue when the Ubuntu community announces the next release name for Ubuntu 17.04." As you might know, every new Ubuntu release has a code name, and it's based on a real animal, except for Ubuntu 14.10 (Utopic Unicorn) and Ubuntu 15.10 (Wily Werewolf), which are inspired by fictional characters. Sylvia Ritter is a huge fan of the open-source Ubuntu Linux operating system and loves to paint animals of all kinds, so this was her opportunity of creating a series of astonishing wallpapers you can use on your smartphone or tablet. Here are all the Ubuntu Linux mascots painted by Sylvia Ritter Below, we've listed all the 25 wallpapers in the order of the launch of each Ubuntu OS. They are Ubuntu 4.10 (Warty Warthog), Ubuntu 5.04 (Hoary Hedgehog), Ubuntu 5.10 (Breezy Badger), Ubuntu 6.06 LTS (Dapper Drake), Ubuntu 6.10 (Edgy Eft), Ubuntu 7.04 (Feisty Fawn), Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon), Ubuntu 8.04 LTS (Hardy Heron), Ubuntu 8.10 (Intrepid Ibex), Ubuntu 9.04 (Jaunty Jackalope), and Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala). The list of Ubuntu Linux release continues with Ubuntu 10.04 LTS (Lucid Lynx), Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick Meerkat), Ubuntu 11.04 (Natty Narwhal), Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot), Ubuntu 12.04 LTS (Precise Pangolin), Ubuntu 12.10 (Quantal Quetzal), Ubuntu 13.04 (Raring Ringtail), Ubuntu 13.10 (Saucy Salamander), Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (Trusty Tahr), Ubuntu 14.10 (Utopic Unicorn), Ubuntu 15.04 (Vivid Vervet), Ubuntu 15.10 (Wily Werewolf), Ubuntu 16.04 LTS (Xenial Xerus), and Ubuntu 16.10 (Yakkety Yak). More Images: You can view other 22 images here. Source
  18. ARM Has A New Weapon In Race To Build World's Fastest Computers ARM's new supercomputer chip design with vector extensions will be in Japan's Post-K computer, which will be deployed in 2020 ARM conquered the mobile market starting with Apple's iPhone, and now wants to be in the world's fastest computers. A new ARM chip design being announced on Monday is targeted at supercomputers, a lucrative market in which the company has no presence. ARM's new chip design, which has mobile origins, has extensions and tweaks to boost computing power. The announcement comes a few weeks after Japanese company Softbank said it would buy ARM for a mammoth $32 billion. With the cash, ARM is expected to sharpen its focus on servers and the internet of things. ARM's new chip design will help the company on two fronts. ARM is sending a warning to Intel, IBM, and other chip makers that it too can develop fast supercomputing chips. The company will also join a race among countries and chip makers to build the world's fastest computers. The chip design is being detailed at the Hot Chips conference in Cupertino, Calif., on Monday. Countries like the U.S., Japan, and China want to be the first to reach the exascale computing threshold, in which a supercomputer delivers 1 exaflop of performance (a million trillion calculations per second). Intel, IBM, and Nvidia have also been pushing the limits of chip performance to reach that goal. Following Softbank's agreement to buy ARM, it should come as no surprise that the first supercomputer based on the new chip design will be installed in Japan. The Post-K supercomputer will be developed by Fujitsu, which dropped a bombshell in June when it dropped its trusty Sparc architecture in favor of ARM for high-performance computers. Fujitsu aided ARM in the development of the new chip. Post-K will be 50 to 100 times speedier than its predecessor, the K Computer, which is currently the fifth fastest computer in the world. The K Computer delivers 10.5 petaflops of peak performance with the Fujitsu-designed SPARC64 VIIIfx processor. The new ARM processor design will be based on the 64-bit ARM-v8A architecture and have vector processing extensions called Scalable Vector Extension. Vector processors drove early supercomputers, which then shifted over to less expensive IBM RISC chips in the early 1990s, and on to general-purpose x86 processors, which are in most high-performance servers today. In 2013, researchers said less expensive smartphone chips, like the ones from ARM, would ultimately replace x86 processors in supercomputers. But history has turned, and the growing reliance on vector processing is seeing a resurgence with ARM's new chip design and Intel's Xeon Phi supercomputing chip. The power-efficient chip design from ARM could crank up performance while reducing power consumption. Supercomputing speed is growing at a phenomenal rate, but the power consumption isn't coming down as quickly. ARM's chip design will also be part of an influx of alternative chip architectures outside x86 and IBM's Power entering supercomputing. The world's fastest supercomputer called the Sunway TaihuLight has a homegrown ShenWei processor developed by China. It offers peak performance of 125.4 petaflops. ARM has struggled in servers for half a decade now, and the new chip design could give it a better chance of competing against Intel, which dominates data centers. Large server clusters are being built for machine learning, which could use the low-precision calculations provided by a large congregation of ARM chips with vector extensions. ARM servers are already available, but aren't being widely adopted. Dell and Lenovo are testing ARM servers, and said they would ship products when demand grows, which hasn't happened yet. ARM server chip makers are also struggling and hanging on with the hope the market will take off someday. AMD, which once placed its server future on ARM chips, has reverted back to x86 chips as it re-enters servers. Qualcomm is testing its ARM server chip with cloud developers, and won't release a chip until the market is viable. AppliedMicro scored a big win with Hewlett Packard Enterprise, which is using the ARM server chips in storage systems. Other ARM server chip makers include Broadcom and Cavium. Source
  19. See Through Walls With Your Smartphone Using This 3D Sensor This sensor will let you ‘see’ through walls like Superman Vayyar Imaging, a 3D-imaging sensor company based in Israel has developed a new 3D-imaging sensor for Android smartphones that allows your device to peer right through walls revealing everything from structural foundations to pipes, to wiring, and even unwanted pests hiding between rooms. Called the Walabot DIY, all you need to do is just download the Walabot DIY app from the Google Play Store, connect the accessory to your smartphone’s USB port, and hold it against a wall. Since, it is a consumer-friendly product; it doesn’t require any training to use. The sensor can also magnetically attach to the back of your smartphone, which allows you to use the two devices single-handedly, leaving your other hand free to operate the app. This gives you a more visual representation of what’s discovered, its placement, what it’s made from, and its distance. Walabot DIY says it can see up to four inches deep into walls made of drywall or even cement. “Walabot instantly turns a smartphone into a powerful 3D-imaging system at your fingertips,” company officials said. “Our advanced technology lets people see all kinds of things hidden in the world around them, adding yet another dimension to the way people use smart devices today,” they said. While the Walabot DIY is more expensive than Walabot Maker version, it could prove the usefulness of Vayyar’s 3D imaging technology. It also gives makers and inventors around the world the opportunity to develop content that takes advantage of the 3D imaging sensor technology. One can not only make use of the existing apps, but can also create their own apps. “Walabot’s technology is simple and intuitive, so people with any level of experience can use it to enjoy and better the world around them,” the company said. “Walabot makes highly sophisticated imaging technology approachable, affordable and usable for everyone,” said Raviv Melamed, CEO and co-founder of Vayyar Imaging, a 3D-imaging sensor company based in Israel. The Walabot DIY uses sophisticated algorithms to detect the radio emissions and reflections of different objects. It studies the data to figure out in real-time what kind of object is hiding behind a typical wall. You can use it to see through tables as well, but not metal objects and other types of barricades. “It can help the blind avoid obstacles, sense — and alert you — if your mother or father has fallen in the shower, help your robot become autonomous, and much more,” Melamed said. “The idea is to take the guesswork out of remodeling,” said Melamed, in an interview with VentureBeat. “You don’t want someone punching a hole in your sewer pipes by accident. It’s like real Superman vision.” According to Melamed, Vayyar’s devices can tell you a lot more about what’s behind a wall. In a demonstration shown to VentureBeat, one can see what’s behind the wall on the screen of the smartphone by just pairing it with the Android smartphone and activating the app. The data is presented in a raw form or an analysis of that data as calculated by Vayyar. As there are some interruptions in displaying what is behind a piece of a wall, you have to move it over the wall slowly. However, you can get a 3D image of an entire room’s walls in just few minutes. Melamed said it will make it a lot simpler to locate a leak in a pipe, or just drill into a wall without the fear of hitting a pipe or electrical wire, hang pictures in a gallery, or mount shelves. “We can get it to 5 millimeters accuracy,” Melamed said. “You’ll know what’s inside a wall in a few minutes.” Besides the above, Walabot DIY is also considered ideal for the construction worker, home renovator, and DIY enthusiast. Walabot DIY is compatible with all Android smartphones 5.0 and higher and comes with USB OTG. After the Walabot DIY app is downloaded via Google Play and completes a short standardization process, it can be used to scan the wall. Images of the wall are then placed on the screen of the smartphone. Walabot DIY also features a flexible sensitivity setting for optimal standardizations on particular renovation and construction projects. This offers two sensing modes and can effortlessly snap photo screenshots for use in offline analysis. Melamed also demonstrated how Walabot DIY can identify the pattern of your breathing. In other words, it has applications for examining your sleep patterns and other uses in health, safety, and quality of life. While the technology is still in its initial stages, it could shoot more demand for augmented reality applications, he said. The Walabot DIY is now on sale in the U.S. for the limited special price of $200 (which is later expected to rise to $300). Source
  20. Verizon Fingered In Android Bloatware-For-Cash Cram Scandal Report says carrier offered to pre-install apps for moolah Verizon has reportedly approached app developers about pre-installing their software on customer handsets in exchange for cash. A report from Ad Age cites marketing industry execs who say that, since late last year, they have been approached by the nation's largest carrier with offers to install their mobile apps on millions of handsets for a per-install fee. The report claims that Verizon would charge the developers $1-2 per install and that the apps would appear on the home screen of Android devices on the Verizon network. Customers would be able to remove the apps from their handsets if they so choose. The report alleges this has been a sticking point for advertisers and developers, who worry they could be charged for users who never activate their apps. Verizon said it has no comment on the report. Apple iPhones, however, would not be included in the deal, thanks to the iron grip Apple keeps on iOS software via the App Store. Rather, the apps would be bundled with new Android devices. Verizon says it has more than 110m mobile connections on its network in total. In its last quarter, the wireless business was credited with bringing in more than $21bn in revenues, though returns have been slipping, which could explain why the carrier is now looking at other cash streams. The deal, while the first of its kind for a mobile carrier, would hardly be unprecedented. PC vendors regularly make such deals with software vendors to offer their products pre-installed on new systems. Such "bloatware" has long been an annoyance for consumers who are then tasked with the time-consuming task of removing the unwanted software from their own machines and, in many cases, those of friends and family as well. From the sound of things, Verizon's planned bundles would be far easier to remove, though still likely an annoyance for many Android users who chose the Google-backed smartphone platform in part because of the freedom it gives users to customize their smartphones and tablets as they see fit. Source
  21. Nokia Taps Former Rovio Man Rantala To Market Relaunch Maker of phones nobody has bought in years hires ex-boss of game nobody has played in years The relaunch of the Nokia mobile brand will include the man who once ran mobile games maker Rovio. HMD global Oy, the parent company of Nokia, said that longtime executive Pekka Rantala will become chief marketing officer of the company, effective immediately. Most recently the chairman of Jot Automation, Rantala is best known for his stint as the chief executive of Rovio and its famed Angry Birds franchise. Rantala stepped down from that job in December of 2015 following a failed effort to expand its marketing reach. Rantala is no stranger to Nokia. Prior to leaving for Rovio, he spent 17 years working in the Finnish phone giant's marketing, sales, and operations departments, eventually becoming senior VP of global marketing. HMD said that as chief marketing officer, Rantala will first oversee the building of Nokia's marketing and communications teams as well as the hiring of "brand specialists" to help lead the charm offensive in Nokia's efforts to re-introduce itself into the consumer mobile space. "There are very few opportunities like this, to work with a global brand with the power to touch hundreds of millions of people every day," Rantala said of his appointment. "It is a privilege to work with this unique brand, to engage with the millions of dedicated Nokia phone fans around the world and create a generation of new ones. We are going to bring together a new team of talented people who can build something incredible." The relaunch of Nokia under the care of HMD was formally announced in May of this year, but has been widely anticipated for much longer. The plan calls for HMD, which is run by Nokia alums, to release Android tablets and handsets with the Nokia branding while using the old device sales channel bought back earlier this year from Microsoft, which will continue to sell handsets under the Lumia banner. Source
  22. New Forensic Tool Will Recover Data From Smartphone RAM, Encrypted Or Not Encryption or not, your smartphone data will now be easily recovered with this forensic tool If you remember the hullabaloo created over Apple being asked by FBI to unlock a locked iPhone 5c belonging to a terrorist. The news generated such hype and opinions that it was dominating world tech news for almost a week before FBI quietly contracted an Israel-based firm to unlock the terrorist’s iPhone. Now FBI or for that matter, any law enforcement agency does not have to go anywhere to recover data from locked or encrypted smartphones as researchers have developed a new forensic tool which recovers data from smartphone RAM called Retroscope. The researchers from Purdue University have developed a new tool to recover information stored in smartphone’s volatile memory could give investigators important clues to solve criminal cases. Instead of trying to unlock the encrypted smartphone’s hardrive, which holds information after the phone is shut down, the researchers instead thought of delving in RAM which is volatile. It is generally thought that the contents of RAM (Random Access Memory) are gone as soon as the smartphone is shut down but the researchers found that they could recover surprising amount of data from the RAM even if it was switched off. The team’s early research resulted in work that could recover the last screen displayed by an Android application. “We argue this is the frontier in cyber crime investigation in the sense that the volatile memory has the freshest information from the execution of all the apps,” said lead researcher Dongyan Xu. “Investigators are able to obtain more timely forensic information toward solving a crime or an attack,” Xu noted. Building on their research, Xu said, it was discovered that apps left a lot of data in the volatile memory long after that data was displayed. RetroScope makes use of the common rendering framework used by Android to issue a redraw command and obtain as many previous screens as available in the volatile memory for any Android app. What is more important for the law enforcement agencies is that Retroscope requires no previous information about an app’s internal data. The screens recovered, beginning with the last screen the app displayed, are presented in the order they were seen previously. “Anything that was shown on the screen at the time of use is indicated by the recovered screens, offering investigators a litany of information,” Xu said. During testing, RetroScope was able to recover anywhere from three to 11 previous screens in 15 different apps, an average of five pages per app. The findings were presented during the USENIX Security Symposium in Austin, Texas. “We feel without exaggeration that this technology really represents a new paradigm in smart phone forensics,” he said. “It is very different from all the existing methodologies for analysing both hard drives and volatile memories,” Xu noted. Source Alternate Source - Forensics tool nabs data from Signal, Telegram, WhatsApp
  23. MiniTool Mobile Recovery for iOS is a piece of iOS data recovery software. This tool supports recovering lost data, like photos, messages/imessages, contacts, call history, notes and etc files from iPhone (or other iOS devices), iTunes and iCloud backup. MiniTool Mobile Recovery for iOS has three recovery modules: “Recover from iOS Device”, “Recover from iTunes Backup File” and “Recover from iCloud Backup File”. You can choose a proper module according to the actual situation to recover the lost data.MiniTool iOS Data Recovery provides free iPhone data recovery service. No matter your files were lost due to accidental deletion, iOS upgrade failure, factory resettings or white apple, etc.. MiniTool Mobile Recovery for iOS will find and fully restore all files. LINK
  24. The Windows 10 Anniversary Update has now been rolling out for PCs for a week, but a report that it would be released for Windows 10 Mobile devices today proved to be inaccurate . But Microsoft is already looking to the next phase of Windows 10 development. In a post on the Windows 10 Feedback Hub today, it said: "We are now getting ready to start releasing new builds from our Development Branch to Windows Insiders in the Fast ring again." It didn't say exactly when the first new builds from the Redstone 2 branch will arrive, but it did point out that - as with Redstone 1, which later became the Anniversary Update - it will start off by releasing Insider Preview builds for PCs first. Windows 10 Mobile Redstone 2 builds will follow "a few weeks after". If you're not quite ready to jump into testing the earliest - and potentially, the most buggy - Redstone 2 builds, you can downgrade from the Fast ring to the more stable Slow or Release Preview rings instead. Alternatively, it's easy to temporarily (or permanently!) opt out of receiving Insider Preview builds altogether - check out our guide to find out how to do so. Source
  25. How To Play Pokémon Go – Beginner’s Tips Not sure which team to join? Don’t know the difference between a regular Poké Ball and a Great Ball? And where do these Pokémon hang out? Read on. Pokémon Go has taken the world by storm and all you need to play it, is a smartphone and a willingness to get outside. Millions have downloaded Pokemon Go, a new augmented-reality game that has them wandering the streets looking for virtual monsters. And as the game soared on the top of download charts, it has also propelled game maker Nintendo on a wild two-day stock spike, adding $7.5-billion to its market value. How do I get started? First things first, you’ll need to install the Pokémon Go app, available in iOS and Android in the United States, Australia, and New Zealand. If you’re not in those areas, hang tight, as Niantic is rolling out to other regions as time goes on. Once you’ve been logged in, you’ll get a brief introduction by the dreamy Professor Willow, who’ll give you an introduction to the game, and walk you through catching your choice of the three starter pokémon — either a Charmander, Squirtle, or Bulbasaur, which should all be familiar to Pokémon regulars. After that though, the game pretty much leaves you on your own, aside from a small tips section that mostly explains basic map icons. But there are three basic parts to play Pokémon Go: catching pokémon, visiting pokéstops, and gym battles. How do I catch pokémon? Catching pokémon works mostly like you’d expect: you simply walk around with the app open on your phone, which will buzz when pokémon are nearby. Tap on the pokémon on the map, and you’ll switch to the catching interface. The color of the ring surrounding the pokémon helps determine how easy it is to catch — green is easiest, yellow intermediate, and red the most difficult. GOING FARTHER AFIELD MAY RESULT IN DIFFERENT OR RARER POKÉMON Pokémon are found at different CP (Combat Power) levels, which more or less determines how powerful the pokémon will be. To raise a pokémon’s CP, you’ll need two resources: stardust, a generic item you obtain with each pokémon that you catch, and the pokémon’s specific candy, which can be obtained by catching duplicates of the pokémon you want to level up. For example, to level up a Zubat’s CP, you’ll need stardust and Zubat candies. Similarly, to evolve your pokémon, you’ll need to use more of that pokémon’s candies, which will also dramatically raise the CP of that pokémon. As your character level increases, you’ll encounter higher level pokémon in the wild and be able to level up the CP level of your pokémon more. Different pokémon are found in different places — so while one location might be infested with Zubats, going farther afield may result in different or rarer pokémon. What are pokéstops? Pokéstops are important landmarks, marked on the map at significant (usually) nearby locations. Visiting pokéstops is the primary way of getting items. When you’re close enough to a pokéstops to activate it, the map icon will expand into a spinning pokéballs icon, allowing you to tap on it to obtain items, such as pokéballs, potions, revives, and eggs (which can be hatched by walking around). You can also activate lure modules at pokéstops, which are marked by a swarm of hearts on the map, increasing the likelihood of pokémon appearing there. Some items, however, can only be purchased with pokécoins, which can be earned by fighting in gym battles or bought as in-app purchases. How do I level my character up? You can earn experience from nearly every activity in the game — catching pokémon, fighting at a gym, visiting pokéstops — which in turn levels up your character. You’ll also be gifted items when you reach a new level. Additionally, once you reach level five, you’ll be given the chance to choose from one of the three color-coded factions: red Team Valor, yellow Team Instinct, and blue Team Mystic, and have the opportunity to battle other trainers in gyms. What are gyms? BATTLING IN GYMS ALSO GIVES YOUR POKÉMON XP Gyms are in-game locations that are typically tied to major real-world areas — such as the Bryant Park Fountain or Times Square — where you can battle other trainers. If a gym is held by your faction, you can select a single pokémon and train against other members of your team, raising the amount of prestige points associated with the gym. The higher the prestige, the more pokémon that can be stationed at the gym, which in turn grants higher daily bonuses of stardust and pokécoins that can be earned. If there’s an open spot at a gym, you can add one of your pokémon to help hold down the fort. Gyms held by one of the two rival factions, however, need to be battled for. If you and your fellow members defeat the pokémon stationed there, you can lower the gym’s prestige and eventually return it to a neutral level. It can then be claimed by your faction and a pokémon can be left there to fight against new challengers. Battling in gyms also gives your pokémon experience and raises their CP and HP. How do I battle? Battling in Pokémon Go is like a simplified version of the classic Game Boy game. Pokémon face off one-on-one, and can use one of two attacks — tapping on the enemy pokémon to do a low-damage light attack, and tap-and-holding to unleash a special attack once your meter has filled. Additionally, you can dodge enemy attacks by swiping left and right. Battles continue until one of the pokémon has fainted. And of course, standard pokémon damage type rules are in effect: water pokémon are effective against fire types, fire against grass, etc. Pokémon can be healed or revived using potions and revives that you can obtain from visiting pokéstops. What are the different items, and how do I get them? Pokéball / Great Ball / Ultra Ball — Pokéballs are your bread and butter tool for catching pokémon. Great balls unlock at level 12 and are better at capturing pokémon, while ultra balls, which unlock at level 20 are even more useful for high-level pokémon. All three can be obtained at pokéstops once you’ve reached the right level, and regular pokéballs can be bought with pokécoins from the Store. Potion / Super Potion / Hyper Potion — Potions allow for pokémon to be healed in between battles. Revives — Allow for revival of pokémon that have fainted in battle. Lucky Egg — An item that doubles the experience you gain in the next half-hour after use. Can be obtained at pokéstops or bought using pokécoins from the store. Razz Berries — A higher-level item obtained starting at level 8, Razz berries can be used on higher level pokémon to help prevent them from running away. More can be found at pokéstops once they’ve been unlocked. Egg Incubator — Egg incubators are used to hatch eggs, which can contain rare pokémon. You’re given one incubator for free that has unlimited uses, while additional, three-use incubators can be found in pokéstops or bought with pokécoins. Eggs hatch after being incubated for a certain walking distance that depends on the specific egg (usually between two to five kilometers). Lure Module — A temporary use item that can be applied to a pokéstop that increases the chances of encountering wild pokémon at that pokéstop for all nearby users. Can be found at pokéstops or bought using pokécoins form the store. Incense — A temporary use item that increases the likelihood of encoding wild pokémon for the user of the item for the next half-hour after use. Can be found at pokéstops or bought at the store with pokécoins. Tips and Tricks: Buy an external battery! Pokémon Go can be a huge battery drain on your phone, since the app needs to be running constantly. There are no pokémon centers in Pokémon Go, so revives and potions remain the only way to heal injured or fainted pokémon. Wait to evolve pokémon until you’re at least level 10 — the boost you receive in CP from evolution is tied to your character level, and the higher your level, the greater will be the gain. Hopping on a bicycle is a fun, fast way to hatch pokémon eggs quickly. Make sure to stay hydrated when catching pokémon outside. Consider turning off the augmented reality interface — it’s fun to see pokémon in the real world, but the camera consumes more battery life and constant movement can make pokémon more difficult to catch. Be smart and make sure to always be aware of your surrounding and people nearby. Pokémon Go relies on Google Maps data — try downloading the maps directly from Google to cut down on battery use and data consumption. Source