One of Google’s top Android executives is leaving the company.Hugo Barra, whose official title is vice president of product management for Android, has been one of the more public faces of the mobile operating system, appearing frequently at Google press events and at its annual I/O developer conference. It was Barra, for example, that showed off the Nexus 7 tablet at its recent launch in San Francisco.Barra, sources said, is leaving for Xiaomi, a fast-growing Chinese phone maker. Xiaomi, which builds Android phones for the Chinese market, prides itself not only on its high-end hardware, but also on the software it adds on top of Google’s operating system.
Rumors are high that Barra left Google because co-founder, Sergey Brin is now dating his ex-girlfriend, after having split from his long term partner.
The official Digg app for Android is here. The app lets users browse the Digg homepage, Digg or save stories, and send to Instapaper, Pocket, or Readability. It also lets users log in to Digg Reader, the recently-launched RSS reader that the company built to replace Google Reader, and use most of the functions available on the web version.
"By far the most common user feedback over the past two months has been some variation on, 'Where’s my freaking Android app, you lazy idiots!?'" the company wrote in a blog post. "This is our first Android release, and we’ll be updating and improving it steadily over the next few months."
Three is dropping international roaming charges in seven countries today, giving UK subscribers with a pay monthly, pay-as-you-go, SIM-only, mobile broadband or business plan the ability to call, text and access the Internet on their normal rates.The ‘Feel At Home’ scheme is being rolled out to the Republic of Ireland, Australia, Italy, Austria, Hong Kong, Sweden and Denmark. As soon as customers cross the border and pick up a local mobile network, they’ll be able to use their device as if they were still in the UK.
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has announced that the US intelligence community will start revealing how many people are targeted each year by surveillance, a long-sought victory for transparency advocates. In a Tumblr post, Clapper says that the NSA and other agencies will begin releasing the total number of surveillance orders made under several programs, as well as how many people were affected by each. It's a move that members of Congress and civil liberties groups have sought for years, but Clapper says it was spurred by President Obama's post-Snowden directive to declassify as much surveillance information as possible without compromising national security.
Twitter is the latest startup to launch a beta testing program on Android, via the Google Play app marketplace. The company has begun taking sign-ups for its “Twitter for Android Experiment Program,” which will allow users to register to test the latest, unreleased builds of Twitter’s Android application.Users interested in becoming Twitter for Android beta testers can join a Google Group, which then provides further details about the Twitter for Android Experiment Program. The program’s goal, explains Twitter, is to “help us improve Twitter for Android and make it more accessible to people around the world, across a range of Android devices.”
Today Nokia promised owners of its Lumia Windows Phone 8 devices that its “Amber” update will reach all phones by the end of September. The Amber upgrade is a mix of feature improvements that will improve Nokia’s handsets, further setting them apart from devices built by other smartphone OEMs.Amber contains a photo-editing tool, improved image processing, the ability to snag motion in sequence with “Action Shot,” the acceptance of double-tap input to wake the phone, and improved internal storage reporting.
Apple’s new iPhone trade-in program is now being offered at Apple Retail Stores across the United States, details of which have been doled out to a number of news organizations. The trade-in program, a part of the iPhone Reuse and Recycling Program, lets customers receive a credit towards the purchase of a new iPhone by bringing in a working iPhone that’s currently under contract.