About Ben Reid





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ben [dot] reid [at] redmondpie [dot] com

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Ben has blogged 5623 post(s).

Posts by Ben Reid:

You can now download PlayBox movies app for iOS and Android, which is a new Popcorn Time like alternative service for iPhone, iPad and Android. It does not require jailbreak to work. More details can be found right here.

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HTC One M9 Android smartphone device specs have been confirmed, and will launch alongside a brand new smartwatch from the company. More details can be found right here.

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iOS 8 has brought a lot to the banquet as far as Apple’s mobile feature-set is concerned, and whilst it remains a million miles away from being an open-source platform, it has been slightly relaxed to include third-party keyboard and Notification Center widget support. Again, some may consider NC widgets to be half-baked compared with what’s possible on, say, Android, but having already seen some impressive efforts from creative developers, a new app lets you turn any piece of the Web into something vaguely representing your very own, all-singing widget. More details and download links can be found right here after the break.

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Here’s how to speed up animations on your iPhone running iOS 8 system-wide with Speed Intensifier. More details on how to do can be found right here after the jump.

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Cheap apps are fairly easy to come by, but it’s not common for good, paid apps to drop their price tag entirely, and when this occurs, we do our best to point you in the right direction. Today, we’ve got an app that ordinarily costs $10 available completely free for a limited time, so if you want to grab a freebie this weekend, check the details after the leap.

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Samsung has long taken pride of place as the darling of high-end Android devices, but that status took a bit of a hiding last year with the emergence of Apple’s two new flagship smartphones. Poor sales of the Galaxy S5 early on in 2014 was worsened with the stuttering and delayed Galaxy Note 4, and as such, Sammy is very much back to the drawing board. Amid a flurry of reports and rumors flying around, it appears as though the Tizen maker’s next flagship will include a revised fingerprint sensor – one that’ll bear remnants of its major rival’s Touch ID.

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Despite taking the crown as the winner of the previous-gen console wars, Microsoft has struggled to consolidate with the Xbox One. Having been outsold by the PlayStation 4 for the most part since their respective arrivals towards the end of 2013, the software giant’s decision to cut the price to just $349 a few months back prompted a receptive response from the gaming community with strong sales last November, and as such, the Windows maker has once again slashed the cost of its flagship console.

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Ever since the iPhone 4 and the iPad 3, Apple fans far and wide have been crying out for Retina displays across the board. The MacBook Pro with Retina display was the first Mac to be treated to a higher-res offering in 2012, and as we continue to wait on the elusive Retina MacBook Air, the iMac was recently handed 5K support for an ultra-sharp experience. Now, for the first time, the Retina iMac is available refurbished at the Apple Online Store, and while availability will certainly vary, this is definitely the least risky way to score yourself a cheaper desktop from Apple.

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The Google Glass Explorer Program will end from next week, although this does not spell the end of the face computer’s development. In fact, it seems that the Big G is simply reshuffling the team and division in charge of the product in a move that should streamline Glass’s route to market.

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In the United States, there are several big-name companies vying for your business, and in recent years, T-Mobile has really shaken things up by offering devices and plans that undercut many of the longer-serving network operators. Today, T-Mobile has launched a fleet of prepaid data plans that will roll out later this month, including some impressive, unlimited deals at bargain rates.

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Xiaomi, a fast-growing Chinese company with a knack for building cheap, powerful mobile products that sometimes closely resemble those designed by Apple, has just dropped two new flagships that tout a supremely high-end experience.

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For well over a decade, the motion picture industry has been fighting a somewhat losing battle against piracy, but in recent times, there have been some crumbs of comfort. Netflix, for example, is a subscription package used by millions of consumers worldwide, and although the major studios don’t recoup as much as they used to from, say, DVD sales, the likes of Netflix are still more desirable than people downloading illegally. Now, one former Wall Street analyst has developed a new service that essentially allows users to “borrow” digital copies of movies from their friends, and whilst Hollywood has yet to hop aboard, it does seem that the creator has taken the necessary steps to ensure the service’s legality.

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BlackBerry, once a superpower in the mobile industry, has lost its way quite spectacularly in recent years, and at present, seems a fallen giant bereft of ideas. With the Canadian outfit unable to sustain a decent market share amid swathes of smartphones and tablets running iOS and Android, it wouldn’t be an overstatement to say that the maker of the PlayBook is currently on its knees. At no point has BlackBerry’s demise been more obvious than during the 2013 takeover bid by Fairfax Financial, a deal that ultimately did not materialize. But now, it seems another company has seen some value in a takeover bid, and that company is Samsung.

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If you have even the vaguest grasp on Australian culture, you’ll know that the sport of cricket is popular across the nation. In fact, it’s quite a massive deal to many Aussie sports fans, and so today’s news that Apple TV now includes its very own Cricket Australia channel will surely appease cricket lovers down under.

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It’s been yet another busy day apps-wise for Google, and having rolled out a new Classroom app for iOS and Android users, the company has also taken the wraps off a major update to its Translate app. Notably, there’s a great new feature that can automatically translates words as they’re detected using a mobile device’s camera.

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The education market serves as an attractive prospect to enterprising companies like Apple and Google, and the latter has just rolled out a new ‘Classroom’ app for iOS and Android. The mobile app does require a Google Apps for Education account, but provided you can meet this prerequisite, details and download links can be found below.

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When it comes to producing third-party accessories and peripherals for Apple products, there are literally thousands of companies catering to the millions rocking Cupertino-designed gadgets. But Apple does keep a close-knit circle of trusted, official partners, one of whom is Belkin, and the latter has just announced its intention to bring HomeKit support to its WeMo line of smart home products.

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Samsung’s Tizen OS is finally getting another run-out in the consumer market via the new Z1 smartphone, a low-end handset that will roll out to Indian consumers initially and costs just $92.

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There has been a marked increase in smart products over the past few years, and at no point has this been made more obvious than at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas last week. As well as the usual spate of announcements and keynotes from the major brands, many fascinating products were on display, with a deluge of smart home products taking center stage. Frequent travelers, meanwhile, tend to rely on the power of their smartphones for checking in, processing boarding passes and generally getting around with ease, but a new smart suitcase by the name of Pluggage could make the generally cumbersome task of dragging around, locating and retrieving our belongings a whole lot easier.

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Only yesterday, Apple rolled out iOS 8.2 beta 4, and as well as the usual performance tweaks and bug fixes, we got a little closer to finding out how Apple Watch will integrate with the Mac maker’s mobile software. Within the Bluetooth settings, we saw how users will easily be able to connect to their wearable, and we also saw instructions alluding to a companion app. Now, thanks to the dogged work of one Apple dev, we have an even better idea if what we can expect from said app.

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