Posts Tagged ‘google play’

Weekend Reading: Facebook’s birthday, Canadian cheer and app stats

Weekend readingThis week, we celebrate Facebook entering its tween years, get a little patriotic and check out the latest predictions for app downloads. Read all about it in the latest edition of the weekend reading.

Facebook turns 10

A decade ago on February 4, Facebook was born. In a familiar story, immortalized in The Social Network, the site soon spread from a few university students to everyone, including your youngest sibling and your grandma. From introducing the ideas of “friending” and “defriending” to guaranteeing annual birthday wishes from loose acquaintances, Facebook has certainly made a mark in its 10 years. In fact, Mashable has curated a list of 8 ways it changed the world. Meanwhile the Guardian dives into the network’s numbers and Time shared a timeline of 10 “monumentally important twists” in the site’s history. Facebook marked the occasion by launching “A Look Back,” which is a short video highlighting your years on Facebook. You can get your own at facebook.com/lookback. I joined Facebook in 2006, and the first photos I shared were from a roadtrip to my hometown!

What were your Facebook firsts?

Canadian cheer

We’ll be cheering on all the Canadian athletes competing in the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games and look forward to seeing that pile of gold, silver and bronze grow! Whether you’re at home or on the go, you can watch complete CBC coverage of the Olympic Winter Games on Rogers on Demand on channel 100 or on Rogers Anyplace TV.

Go Canada!

What sports will you be following in the coming weeks?

Double the app-etite

Terrible pun aside, we know Canadians have on average 25 apps on their smartphones and tablets. In May 2013, the Google Play store reached the one million mark for apps and games currently available, while Apple marked the milestone in October 2013. With all these options available, app downloads are expected to double over the next four years, according to new research from eMarketer. Annual downloads are expected to soar from 82 billion in 2013 to more than 200 billion in 2017. As for how people find new apps to download, the research found that browsing the app store was the most popular (with 55 per cent), while one-third seek out apps that were recommended by friends and one-fifth found new apps through social media.

I rely heavily on app recommendations from my friends for my many, many downloads. Where do you discover new apps?

Hello, Russia!

Whether you’re visiting the Kremlin in Moscow, climbing Mount Elbrus or visiting everything in between, Rogers customers can now experience same fast LTE speeds they’re used to at home when they’re travelling across Russia. This new LTE roaming agreement means you can enjoy seamless streaming, fast mapping and easy sharing. Find out more at Rogers.com/roaming. Happy travels!

What Russian landmark is on your must-visit bucket list?

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Weekend Reading: FOMO, perfect pics and a mobile milestone

Weekend readingDo you, like Mindy Kaling, worry that everyone is hanging out without you? According to new research, that fear may be the motivation to check your cellphone alerts up to 100 times a day. Plus, smartphone shipments hit a major milestone, Twitter updates its app to include photo sharing and we teach you how to use carrier billing. Learn all about it in this week’s edition of the weekend reading.

FOMO on screen

Fear of missing out (FOMO) means we’re checking our phones nearly 100 times a day, according to research from Mobile Posse and Phoenix Marketing International. The October research found that U.S. smartphone users spend more time (26 per cent of the total) checking alerts on their home and lock screens than with any other mobile activity. More than half of those surveyed said the notifications were the first thing they checked when they picked up their phone – fuelling the researcher’s belief that this was due to their alternative phrase for FOMO, which they called “Fear of missing something” (FOMS).  Thirty per cent of smartphone users also looked at their phone immediately after getting an alert – and on average they were signed up for notifications from at least eight categories, including missed calls, text, email, social, news, weather, games and more.

How often do you check your phone’s alerts?

Mobile milestone

We’re always sharing stats that mobile use is on the rise in Canada, but last year smartphone shipments hit a new record: for the first time one billion smartphones were shipped in a single year. According to IDC, that’s an increase of 38.4 per cent from the 725.3 million devices shipped in 2012. “Only two years ago, we had half a billion units, so it’s a testament to how popular smartphones are and how competitive the market is right now,” Ramon T. Llamas, of IDC, told Mashable. He does expect growth to slow down eventually, predicting that a plateau is likely in the next five or six years.

Did you purchase a new cellphone in 2013? Which model?

Apps made easy

The average smartphone or tablet in Canada is loaded with 25 apps – but I suspect RedBoard readers are carrying even more games, productivity and educational tools in the palm of their hand! To help Android-toting Rogers customers keep up with the latest downloads, all in one convenient bill, we recently started offering carrier billing at the Google Play store. That means instead of charging your app downloads to your credit card bill, you can add them to your monthly Rogers statement, making it easier to track your wireless spending. Check out the step-by-step how to here.

How many apps have you downloaded to your devices?

Tweak your tweets

Twitter continues to roll out new updates to its mobile apps, and the latest change adds a photo editor. Now, users of the microblogging platform on Android can crop and rotate the images that accompany their tweets. Plus, Twitter now prompts you to @mention the friends in the photo.  According to Engadget, the changes will soon roll out for iOS users too.

Do you share photos on Twitter? Will you edit your shots before hitting send?

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How to charge Google Play purchases to your Rogers bill

Google PlayThe recent Rogers Innovation Report found that Canadians had quite the ‘app-etite’ in 2013; their smartphones and tablets included a buffet of twenty-five apps on average. Not surprisingly, Facebook was the most popular app overall, appearing on 74 per cent of Canadian smartphones.

I consider myself a bit of a techie so I have almost 90 apps on my phone and use about a third of them regularly. I’m a fan of keeping things simple, so I have my Google Play purchases billed to my monthly Rogers statement. This way, I see all of my wireless costs in one place.

If you’re an Android user, you too can skip the credit card and charge your Google Play purchases directly to your Rogers account. The purchase will show up on your monthly statement as “Google Play.”

To take advantage of Google Play carrier billing, simply choose “carrier billing” when making a purchase.

If you’ve already linked a credit card to your Google Wallet, you’ll need to remove it before you can see the option for carrier billing:

  1. Visit wallet.google.com
  2. Log in
  3. Go to “Payment Methods” and select the credit card
  4. Tap “Remove” and tap again to confirm

Next time you’re making a Google Play purchase, select carrier billing and voila, you’re all set!

So tell us: How many apps do you have on your smartphone or tablet?

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Weekend Reading: App milestones, LTE rollouts, Google Play and coffee with Tim Cook

Weekend Reading: App milestones, LTE rollouts, Google Play and coffee with Tim CookHappy Victoria Day weekend everyone! We’ve got your cottage reading right here to help you catch up on all the latest tech news, including more LTE rollouts, the price of coffee with Tim Cook, app domination and Google updates. All coming up in this week’s edition of Weekend Reading.

There’s an app for everything

Apple and BlackBerry both released reports on their respective app stores this week, and the figures were pretty mind blowing. In the short time since BlackBerry 10 launched, 120,000 apps have already become available for the platform in the Blackberry World store. There were 70,000 apps available when the Z10 and Q10 launched, so another 50,000 were created in a mere four months. BlackBerry president and CEO Thorsten Heins shared his excitement and future plans with BlackBerry Live here.

Apple also hit a milestone this week, reaching the 50 billionth download mark! The App Store first opened in 2008 with only 500 apps. Now almost five years later, the store is seeing downloads at a rate of 800 apps per second! Apple commemorated the occasion by awarding the 50 billionth downloader a $10,000 App Store gift card. Read more from the official press release from Apple here. I’m personally responsible for hundreds of those downloads myself! What are some of your faves? Let’s compare top picks in the comments below!

Rogers LTE rolls out in more markets this week!

Fantastic news announced today that we couldn’t wait to share with our RedBoard readers – our LTE Max network has launched in a number of new markets, including Brooks, Cochrane and Canmore, Alta. and Sault Ste. Marie and Muskoka, Ont. We also expanded our LTE network to Saint-Georges, Que.; Sydney, N.S.; Bathurst, N.B and expanded our coverage in the Moncton, N.B. area.

With these new cities launched, we’re still right on track to deliver with our commitment to launch our LTE network in 44 new markets this spring. With the LTE network expansion to cottage country, who’s going to take advantage in Muskoka this long weekend?

Google Play for Education

This week was huge for Google. Among their many announcements came news of an Android app being launched to aid in children’s education. Already piloted in select schools, the app enables teachers to search for educational apps for their subjects and grade levels. Teachers can then add the selected apps to Nexus tablets – all the students need is a Google account to access it.

Be sure to visit the official Google blog to keep up on all their latest developments on Google Play for Education and so much more.

Treat Tim Cook to a cup of Joe … for $610,000

Yes, you read that correctly, there are no typos where the numbers of zeros are concerned. In an auction on CharityBuzz, a bidder paid $610,000 for a 30 to 60 minute coffee break with the Apple CEO. Although it was a hefty price tag for a java jolt, proceeds will be going towards the RFK Center for Justice and Human Rights. 

So what do you think they will talk about over their coffee? I’d love to be a fly on the wall for that conversation!

Kelly is a regular RedBoard contributor.

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Rogers roundup: Android apps to celebrate spring

Samsung Galaxy phone taking a photo of daisies.Blooming buds, chirping birds and sweet, sweet sunshine: Canadians are already eagerly watching for the first signs of spring, which officially begins Wednesday. In honour of the start of patio and BBQ season, we’re sharing some of our favourite Android apps for spring entertaining from the Google PLAY store.

Barbequing done right

A warm evening just begs for dinner to be thrown on the grill. The iGrill helps you cook burgers and steaks to perfection. This thermometer, which costs $80, communicates via Bluetooth with a free app from the Google PLAY store (it’s also available for iOS), to help you track cooking times and even serves up recipes.

Bored with burgers? Cooking apps such as Big Oven (free), which features more than 250,000 recipes, Epicurious (free), which boasts more than 28,000 meal ideas, and celebrity chef Jamie Oliver’s 20-minute meals app ($3.80) will help spice up your menus to take advantage of all that fresh produce.

Entertaining made easy

If you’re serving dinner for a group, you can manage your party prep and planning with Pepperplate (free). This app lets users share recipes, create menus and shopping lists and run multiple cooking timers to make sure that pot on the stove doesn’t boil over while you’re mixing mojitos.

A night in the backyard or balcony also calls for a great soundtrack. Music-streaming concierge Songza (free) lets you choose playlists based on activity or mood, while the subscription-based Rdio (free) offers more than 18 million songs on demand.

Shoot like a pro

In this “Pictures or it didn’t happen” society, it doesn’t hurt to upgrade your phone’s editing software to make sure your home-cooked meals,  hand-picked bouquets and perfect pedicures look their best on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and beyond. Adobe PhotoShop Touch ($3.99) brings Adobe’s popular photo-editing features, including layers, filters, tone and colour adjustment to your phone.

And if you’re looking for a new phone or tablet to go with your fresh spring wardrobe, you can get a $35 voucher – only available in Canada through Rogers – to spend on great apps in the Google PLAY store when you activate a Samsung Galaxy S III, Note 2 or another eligible Samsung Galaxy device with a two or three year plan before April 1.

Did we miss any of your favourite apps? Share your must-haves in the comments.

Jennifer is a regular contributor to RedBoard.

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