Today in Tech
  • You've got hundreds of thousands of programs to choose from on either platform

    The war between Apple and Android wages on, and now the battlefield is the online app market. Google Play, the marketplace for Android devices, has always trailed the App Store in number of offerings, even though it launched just three months after the Apple resource. The App Store has 700,000 products up for sale, according to Apple's iPhone 5 presentation on September 12. But Google Play is nearing that total with 675,000 apps available. The platform also passed 25 billion downloads yesterday and held a major sale in honor of the milestone, with several top apps still available for just 25 cents.

    While the number of available apps for each operating system is drawing even, there are still major differences in how each store works. Apple requires an approval process before an app can go up for sale on iTunes, but Google Play has no such vetting procedure. There's an up and a down side to that. It means that Apple went without any spam appearing on its store for five years, and the

    Read More »from Google Play gaining on iTunes App Store in race for most apps available
  • The new displays would also work as speakers and have buttons that rise from their surface on command

    Don't think the new iPhone 5 was enough of a leap over the previous generation of Apple's smartphone in terms of design? Well, a new patent by the Cupertino, Calif. tech powerhouse should have you very excited. The company has patented a flexible screen technology that could not only allow for curved screens on future devices, but ones that transform to feature physical buttons and actually emit sound as well.

    The new screen type can be bent into concave and convex configurations as seen in the patent drawings above, but their flexibility is about more than aesthetics. For example, specific areas of the screens can be made to vibrate differently, replicating the properties of speaker elements and producing sounds. The patent also notes that they can be used with lasers placed underneath to act as microphones, meaning that the entire display could effectively be used to pick up your voice.

    Perhaps the most interesting use of the flexible technology, however, is placing tiny actuators

    Read More »from Apple has its eyes on flexible iPhone screens
  • Previously unseen celestial object will stun stargazers next November

    Late next year, there will be a new object in the night sky nearly 10 times brighter than the full moon. This temporary attraction, called C/2012 S1, is a comet that has likely never passed through our inner solar system before, so it's larger and more reflective than those our sun has already blasted.

    C/2012 S1 won't just be bright; it'll be large enough to see without the need for binoculars or a telescope. Its brightness magnitude is expected to be -16, with the Sun by comparison being -26. Comet Hale-Bopp, seen above, was magnitude -1 when it passed through our solar system in 1997. Astronomers are predicting that C/2012 S1 will appear in the sky near the sun and horizon, so it should be fairly easy to pinpoint without a sky map. Should it contain a large amount of gas beneath its icy exterior, the comet could sprout a massive glowing tail as it nears the sun and the ice is melted away, making it even easier to see — not to mention much cooler looking.

    Scientists tracking C/2012

    Read More »from Comet due in 2013 could be brighter than the full moon


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