apps

Moment Pro Camera app brings big camera controls to your phone

Moment, the company that brought you the best glass for your mobile device, now gives you DSLR-like controls with their Pro Camera app. Features include full manual adjustment over ISO, shutter speed, white balance, image format and more. It should be noted that if you don’t have a shiny new device you won’t be able to use the app to its full potential as some of its key features include 3D touch, dual lens control, RAW image format, 120 and 240 fps and 4K resolution. Moment says the app is for “anyone looking for pro, manual controls on their phone.” Being one of TechCrunch’s resident image makers, I figured I should take the app out for a spin and pit it against the stock camera app. I enlisted my photogenic friend, Jackie, to be my muse. Scrolling through the manual settings was very ea...

The Nudge is a planner app packaged as an SMS subscription service

How do you fix digital information overload and the resulting life-attention deficit that’s apparently afflicting smartphone owners everywhere — and even leading some very large tech giants to unbox “digital wellness” tools lately? San Francisco-based startup The Nudge reckons the answer to getting millennials to spend less time sucked into screens, and more time out and about actually doing things, is — you guessed it — another technology service! Albeit one that delivers inspirational plan ideas for stuff to do in your free time, delivered via the traditional text message conduit of SMS. The sibling duo behind the startup, John and Sarah Peterson, have bagged $540,000 in pre-seed funding for their text planner idea, after running a year-long public beta of the service in San Francisco. T...

Facebook was never ephemeral, and now its Stories won’t have to be

Before Snapchat made social media about just today, Facebook made it about forever. The 2011 “Timeline” redesign of the profile and keyword search unlocked your past, encouraging you to curate colorful posts about your life’s top moments. That was actually an inspiration for Snapchat, as its CEO Evan Spiegel wrote in its IPO announcement that “We learned that creativity can be suppressed by the fear of permanence.” Now Facebook is finding a middle ground by optionally unlocking the history of your Stories that otherwise disappear after 24 hours. Facebook will soon begin testing Stories Highlights, the company confirmed to TechCrunch. Similar to Instagram Stories Highlights, it will let you pick your favorite expired photos and videos, compile them into themed collections with titles and co...

Apple’s Shortcuts will flip the switch on Siri’s potential

Matthew Cassinelli Contributor Matthew Cassinelli is a former member of the Workflow team and works as an independent writer and consultant. He previously worked as a data analyst for VaynerMedia. At WWDC, Apple pitched Shortcuts as a way to ”take advantage of the power of apps” and ”expose quick actions to Siri.” These will be suggested by the OS, can be given unique voice commands, and will even be customizable with a dedicated Shortcuts app. But since this new feature won’t let Siri interpret everything, many have been lamenting that Siri didn’t get much better — and is still lacking compared to Google Assistant or Amazon Echo. But to ignore Shortcuts would be missing out on the bigger picture. Apple’s strengths have always been the device ecosystem and the apps that run on them. With S...

Early uses of blockchain will barely be visible, says Hyperledger’s Brian Behlendorf

The blockchain revolution is coming, but you might not see it. That’s the view of Brian Behlendorf, executive director of the Linux Foundation’s Hyperledger Project. Speaking at the TC Sessions: Blockchain event in Zug, Switzerland, Behlendorf explained that much of the innovation that the introduction of blockchains are primed to happen behind this the scenes unbeknownst to most. “For a lot of consumers, you’re not going to realize when the bank or a web form at a government website or when you go to LinkedIn and start seeing green check marks against people’s claims that they attended this university — which are all behind-the-scenes that will likely involve blockchain,” Behlendorf told interviewer John Biggs. “This is a revolution in storage and networking and consumers.” As for where b...

Bixby creeps toward usefulness with sports news from theScore

It’s certainly understandable that Samsung wanted to follow Apple, Amazon and Google into the smart assistant game. But Bixby has been anything but a rousing success. The AI has added voice functionality and a smattering of features in subsequent releases, including the S9’s Google Lens-style capabilities, but it’s yet to live up to its full potential.  Today, theScore announced that it’s bringing live sports scores and news from the gamut of top sports leagues, including the NBA, MLB, NFL, NHL and EPL soccer, starting next month. In August, the feature will arrive in Bixby Home, bringing with it customizable notifications based on sports or specific teams. It’s a small addition in the larger scope of what these assistants have to offer, but I know that regular sports scores are one of my ...

Google releases Beta 3 of Android P

It still doesn’t have an official name (Popsicle? Peppermint? Your guess is as good as ours), but Google’s just dropped what it says is a near final version of Android P. The new version arrives a month after Beta 2, bringing with it what largely amounts to bug fixes and stability tweaks. This is the last major beta update the company is sending out to developers prior to the final version of the mobile operating system, due out for the rest of us, later this summer. From the sound of it, there shouldn’t be too major major visible tweaks this time out — Google brought a number of those with Beta 2. “With the developer APIs already finalized in the previous update,” Android VP of Engineering Dave Burke says in a blog post tied to the announce, “Beta 3 now takes us very close to what you’ll ...

Original Stitch’s new Bodygram will measure your body

After years of teasing, Original Stitch has officially launched their Bodygram service and will be rolling it out this summer. The system can scan your body based on front and side photos and will create custom shirts with your own precise measurements. “Bodygram gives you full body measurements as accurate as taken by professional tailors from just two photos on your phone. Simply take a front photo and a side photo and upload to our cloud and you will receive a push notification within minutes when your Bodygram sizing report is ready,” said CEO Jin Koh. “In the sizing report you will find your full body measurements including neck, sleeve, shoulder, chest, waist, hip, etc. Bodygram is capable of producing sizing result within 99% accuracy compared to professional human tailors.” The tec...

WTF is dark pattern design?

If you’re a UX designer you won’t need this article to tell you about dark pattern design. But perhaps you chose to tap here out of a desire to reaffirm what you already know — to feel good about your professional expertise. Or was it that your conscience pricked you? Go on, you can be honest… or, well, can you? A third possibility: Perhaps an app you were using presented this article in a way that persuaded you to tap on it rather than on some other piece of digital content. And it’s those sorts of little imperceptible nudges — what to notice, where to tap/click — that we’re talking about when we talk about dark pattern design. But not just that. The darkness comes into play because UX design choices are being selected to be intentionally deceptive. To nudge the user to give up more than ...

YouTube’s picture-in-picture mode is live for all US Android users

YouTube has confirmed that picture-in-picture mode — previously a paid-only feature — has now rolled out to all U.S. YouTube users on Android on supported devices. The feature, which works on Android 8.0 (Oreo) or higher, had been slowly rolling out to non-Premium subscribers since this April we understand, and the full rollout completed on Monday. The website XDA Developers was the first to spot the expansion, noting earlier this week that it seemed as if picture-in-picture mode had suddenly been turned on for several more YouTube users. They suspected that this had been a gradual launch, but didn’t confirm the status with YouTube directly. Picture-in-picture mode, as you likely understand by its name, allows you to continue watching a video in a small window as you continue to browse You...

WhatsApp copies Telegram to add one-way ‘broadcast’ mode to group chats

“Good artists borrow great artists steal” is a phrase that Facebook seems acutely aware of. It’s common to speak of Instagram, the Facebook-owned photo-app-now-social-network, borrowing from Snapchat, but now Facebook’s WhatsApp chat app is increasingly drawing its innovation from others such as Telegram. This week, WhatsApp outed a new feature for its groups that is essentially a replica of Telegram’s channels — that is, a one-way broadcast communication stream. Telegram channels are popular for setting up a broadcast news feed that allows people to sign up to get alerts from channel admins, who might be news agencies, companies, schools, public interest groups or more. Now WhatsApp is adding the feature to gives its message app new use cases. Actually, as is often the case for WhatsApp, ...

Hackers too over the Gentoo Linux Github repository

Popular Linux distribution Gentoo has been completely “totally pwned” according to researchers at Sophos and none of the current code can be trusted. The team immediately posted an update and noted that none of the real code has been compromised. However, they have pulled the Github repository until they can upload a fresh copy of the unadulterated code. “Today 28 June at approximately 20:20 UTC unknown individuals have gained control of the Github Gentoo organization, and modified the content of repositories as well as pages there. We are still working to determine the exact extent and to regain control of the organization and its repositories. All Gentoo code hosted on github should for the moment be considered compromised,” wrote Gentoo administrators. “This does NOT affect any code hos...