Team17's 2D arena game 'Penarium' is now available on the Play Store for $1.99

Team17, perhaps best known for its long-running Worms series, released 'Penarium' on Steam back in 2015. The game is centered around a sadistic arena-like circus show, where you take on the role as Willy as he tries to survive the death traps. Now the game has been released on the Play Store.

Much like the PC version, the Android port has very low requirements - it even works on Android 2.3.3 Gingerbread. The price isn't too bad either - just $1.99 for the entire game.

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Team17's 2D arena game 'Penarium' is now available on the Play Store for $1.99 was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Samsung's new parental control app Marshmallow has nothing to do with Android Marshmallow


Samsung just launched an app late last night for parents to keep track of their children's smartphone usage, but this one has an interesting twist. Instead of just being forced to follow whatever guidelines are set by the parent, this app relies on positive reinforcement via your offspring's initiative. They set their own limits, and the app rewards their self-control and independence. That's actually pretty awesome.

The name of the app, as well as its overall methodology, probably comes from a psychological experiment done in the 60's and 70's at Stanford, in which children were told they had a choice between a small reward now, or a larger reward later.

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Samsung's new parental control app Marshmallow has nothing to do with Android Marshmallow was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Chrome Beta 59 adds Animated PNG support, works with more payment apps, and disables some security risks [APK Download]

Chrome 58 just recently hit stable, which means Chrome 59 has been moved up to the Beta branch. This time around, Chrome is finally adding support for the Animated PNG standard. There are also a few other important changes, so let's take a look.

Animated PNG Support

GIFs are far from perfect. They have a low color depth, can slow webpages down, and can have a massive file size (relative to compressed video).

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Chrome Beta 59 adds Animated PNG support, works with more payment apps, and disables some security risks [APK Download] was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Deal: BLU R1 Plus on sale for $109.99

Right on schedule, the BLU R1 Plus has had its price cut by $50.

Amazon and Best Buy are now selling the new BLU R1 Plus for $109.99, which is $50 off its normal asking price. This deal is only available today, April 29, so you don’t have long to act if you’re thinking about taking advantage of this deal.

The BLU R1 Plus is Prime-eligible, so Amazon Prime subscribers can get their phone with free two-day shipping. Best Buy is offering free shipping, too, but it’s not two-day shipping.

As a refresher, the BLU R1 Plus features a 5.5-inch 1280×720 display, 13-megapixel rear and 8-megapixel front cameras, MediaTek 6737 quad-core processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of storage, a microSD slot, and a 4000mAh battery. It comes with Android 6.0, but BLU says that an update to Android 7.0 is planned.

BLU’s R1 Plus is a GSM unlocked device that is compatible with AT&T and T-Mobile in the US. It offers support for VoLTE on T-Mobile, but not Wi-Fi Calling.

Are you going to snag a BLU R1 Plus at its sale price?

Sources: Amazon, Best Buy

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Kodi 18 will support Leanback suggestions and Google voice search on Android TV

Kodi, formerly known as XBMC, is an open-source media player that is available on a variety of platforms - including Android. If you use Kodi on your Android TV, you'll be happy to know that the next major release will support Leanback suggestions and voice search.

This means that Kodi will fill the home screen of Android TV with content suggestions from your library, much like YouTube and Google Play Movies. And as you can probably guess, the voice search functionality means you can ask to play anything in your Kodi library from Android TV's Google search (it will not return results from add-ons).

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Kodi 18 will support Leanback suggestions and Google voice search on Android TV was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Onkyo and Pioneer add Chromecast functionality to receivers via software update

It’s not often that major functionality comes to older products via a free software update, but that’s exactly what’s happening with Onkyo and Pioneer receivers. The two companies have announced that their newer receivers are getting an update with Chomecast functionality.

Unlike many streaming functions, Chromecast doesn’t actually need special hardware. Thus older receivers with WiFi can be updated to support casting. This will allow you to send media to your home theater without any extra devices, wires, or apps.

If you’re interested in more info about the update and which models will get it, hit the source links to read more.

Via: Pioneer
Source: Onkyo, Pioneer

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Samsung Galaxy S8 home button shifts to prevent burn-in

If you’ve been using technology for a while, burn-in is nothing new to you. It occurs when an image stays on-screen long enough to permanently show, even when the image changes. Though some types of displays are more sensitive to burn-in than others, it’s a phenomenon that can happen to almost any display. OLED displays are especially vulnerable.

If you own an Android Wear smartwatch with an OLED display, you might have noticed that the watch face shifts around when in ambient mode, almost always being off-center. This is to prevent the static elements like the numbers and details from permanently burning into the display and is enabled by default on many watches. The first gen Moto 360 did not have this feature enabled, and despite being a regular LCD,  suffered from burn-in issues.

Samsung Galaxy S8 moving home button

It seems Samsung has taken the same route with the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+, though not with the entire display. The new on-screen home button shifts around a little bit to prevent burn-in. Though the home button is always at the bottom when in portrait, you would see it in fullscreen or landscape apps if it burned in, so this is a good decision on Samsung’s part.

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Rumors of an LG G6 Mini unclear

Rumors of an LG G6 Mini began yesterday with TechnoBuffalo publishing an article stating that a leaked internal document speaks of an LG G6 Mini. LG recently released its G6 flagship smartphone, and the Korean manufacturer has previously released mini versions of major devices. In this case, however, it is unclear if the G6 Mini will make it to market.

The article refers to the device as having a 5.4-inch display with the same 18:9 aspect ratio as its larger sibling. Internal specifications of the device weren’t revealed in the document, but many of LG’s past mini devices have featured lower-end hardware as a means to target emerging markets and budget-conscious shoppers.

Fans of the rumored device may be let down. Pricing and release details weren’t disclosed and a date from early 2016 was mentioned in the document, making it a plausible alternative that the G6 Mini was simply a proposed device that was later cancelled. The lack of other rumors regarding the device lends some credence to this option.

If other details regarding the LG G6 Mini emerge, we’ll be sure to keep readers in the loop. Stay tuned.

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[Deal Alert] Get your weekend started with 18 temporarily free and 23 on-sale apps

Friday is here and that means we all survived another week. For me, that means a weekend of homework and studying, but I hope not all of you share the same fate as I do. It being Friday also means it's time for another round of apps that are free or on sale!

As always, the free apps will remain in your library unless you uninstall them within the Play Store's refund window.

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[Deal Alert] Get your weekend started with 18 temporarily free and 23 on-sale apps was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Google WiFi now available in Canada for $179 CAD

Google WiFi is a great little router that’s capable of building a mesh network. You can set up multiple devices together that wirelessly extend your network, though one alone does a pretty good job. It’s supplemented by a very simple and intuitive mobile app to control it.

The little router is now for sale in Canada for $179 CAD on the Google Store, which is about the same price as it is here in the US. You can also pick up a three-pack for large homes for $439.

Canada is only one of three markets to sell the Google WiFi, the others being the US and the UK, so let us know if you pick one up!

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T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+ to get Nougat update next week

If you own a T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+, you’re in for a treat. T-Mobile announced that the Android 7.0 Nougat has finally been approved for the device and will begin rolling out early next week.

The Nougat update is a big one and includes a new Doze mode for better battery life, split-screen multitasking, switching between the last used apps by double tapping the recent apps button, improved notifications with quick reply, and a lot more.

Start checking for updates come Monday and let us know when you get it!

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Sony Xperia XA1, XA1 Ultra Coming to Canada in Next Few Months

If you’re a fan of Sony smartphones, then we have some good news for you today. According to a report, the Sony Xperia XA1 and Sony Xperia XA1 Ultra will arrive in Canada soon.

The Sony Xperia XA1 will be available starting May 5 from Videotron and from May 12 onwards from Freedom Mobile. As for the Ultra version, it will land with both carriers on June 22. At the moment pricing specifications are unknown, but we’ll update you as soon as the information becomes available for us.

Both smartphones were introduced back at MWC 2017 in Barcelona with the Xperia XA1 being the most advanced of the two. The device features a 6-inch display with 1920 x 1080 resolution and 367ppi, while the standard Xperia XA1 offers only a 5-inch display with 1280 x 720 resolution and 294 ppi.

Both versions take advantage of a MediaTek Helio P20 octa-core processor clocked at 2.3GH, but the Ultra carriers 4GB of RAM with 32GB/64GB of internal storage, while its little brother has only 3GB and 32GB of internal storage. The duo features a microSD card slot which facilitates memory expansion up to 256GB.

When it comes to photography, both phones feature a 23-megapixel 1/2.3 Exmor RS sensor with hybrid autofocus. The base model has an 8-megapixel selfie snapper with autofocus, while the Ultra version comes with a better 16-megapixel with optical image stabilization and autofocus.

The two Xperias run Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box.

[Mobile Syrup]


The post Sony Xperia XA1, XA1 Ultra Coming to Canada in Next Few Months appeared first on Android in Canada Blog.

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Huawei Watch 2 Not Available in Canada, But You Can Still Buy it

While Huawei already stated it has no plans of bringing the Huawei Watch 2 in Canada, customers in the country can nevertheless, purchase the device.

The smartwatch is available on for $399.99 CAD. Although the listing mentions the wearable will ship from its US counterpart.

The wearable is offered in Black (Standard) and Gray (Classic) and both versions are available with a 45mm diameter. The Huawei Watch 2 boasts an AMOLED display with impressive 390 x 390-pixel resolution. It has a 420 mAh battery optimized to deliver longer life, so it can last up to 2 days of normal use.

When in training mode with the heart rate and GPS mode on, the wearable can last up to 10 hours. Despite original reports hinting towards the Huawei Watch 2 featuring a SIM card slot, at the time of the wearable’s US launch, no mention was made of it. And even if the product would have had a SIM card slot, Canadian customers wouldn’t be able to use it anyway.

The Huawei Watch runs Android Wear 2.0 out of the box and gives users access to Google Assistant and Android Pay.

Would you fancy the new, stylish yet sporty Huawei Watch 2?


The post Huawei Watch 2 Not Available in Canada, But You Can Still Buy it appeared first on Android in Canada Blog.

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BlackBerry KEYone Pre-Orders in Canada Start May 18

You might remember that at CES 2017, TLC and BlackBerry introduced the KEYone smartphone. Now in late April, the handset is yet to start shipping to customers across the world.

However, we do have some good news for you. The Canadian company announced the phone will make its way into Canada soon. Customers will be able to pre-order the smartphone come May 18 from Bell, Bell MTS, Rogers, SaskTel and Telus. Pricing starts at $199 on a two-year term.

The BlackBerry KEYone will ship out to customers with a full QWERTY keyboard and a 4.5-inch display with 1080 x 1620 resolution and 433 ppi. In term of processors, the phone takes advantage of one of Qualcomm’s middle range chipsets, the Snapdragon 625 with Adreno 506 GPU. The product is offered with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage, with the possibility to add up to 256GB via a microSD card slot.

The new KEYone also comes equipped with a 12-megapixel main camera with f/2.0, phase detection autofocus and dual-LED flash plus an 8-megapixel selfie snapper with f/2.2. The phone will ship with Android 7.1 Nougat out of the box and a 3,505 mAh battery which should ensure the device has a decent recharging cycle.

[Mobile Syrup]

The post BlackBerry KEYone Pre-Orders in Canada Start May 18 appeared first on Android in Canada Blog.

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Samsung Develops App to Prevent Distracted Driving

Distracted driving due to smartphone usage has become one of the most common causes of car accidents. In a bid to prevent drivers from focusing on their smartphone while driving, Samsung announced a new app called In-Traffic Reply.

What this app basically does is prevent you from picking up any calls or replying to messages while in transit. Thanks to the smartphone’s sensors, the app will be able to tell when a user is driving and will send automatic replies to any callers trying to reach him/her. In-Traffic Reply will send out messages like “I’m driving, so I can’t answer at the moment”, but users can customize it anyway they please – even adding a few fun animations.

The app is being developed by Samsung Netherlands, following a recent PanelWizard study which found that approximately one third of Dutch drivers use a smartphone while driving a car or riding a bike. The app is currently still in beta, but it should make it out into the Google Play Store in mid-May.

While the app does not completely lock the smartphone while the user is driving, it might be quick enough to respond to a call or text before the driver has the chance to reach for the phone.


The post Samsung Develops App to Prevent Distracted Driving appeared first on Android in Canada Blog.

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Refurbished Samsung Galaxy Note 7R Will Sell for a Lot of Money

A few months ago we heard of Samsung’s alleged plans of sell refurbished Galaxy Note7 units in emerging markets. Well it seems the Korean tech giant is actually going through with it, but the refurbished model won’t make it on markets like India or the Philippines.

According to a report from ETNews, the new version dubbed Galaxy Note 7R will be sold in South Korea come this July. We’re also told the device will be sold for approximately $841 CAD. The refurbished unit is 29% cheaper than the original product which sold for approx. $1,186 CAD in the country.

However, that does not make the Galaxy Note 7R cheap – far from it. It remains to be seen whether brand loyalists are actually going to go ahead and buy the refurbished device, when they could be getting a new phone instead.

The Galaxy Note 7R will ship with a smaller battery than the 3,500 mAh power house which originally powered the entrails of the Note7, which will hopefully makes it safe to use.

We don’t expect Samsung to start selling the refurbished units in the Canada or the US, but who knows. If the strategy proves successful, Samsung might want to eventually bring out the second Note7 to other markets.


The post Refurbished Samsung Galaxy Note 7R Will Sell for a Lot of Money appeared first on Android in Canada Blog.

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Freedom Mobile Now Offers Wi-Fi Calling

Freedom Mobile is delivering what was promised back when it announced it was re-branding from Wind Mobile – and that’s Wi-Fi calling.

Wi-Fi calling is currently available for all Freedom Mobile post-paid plan holders with a compatible device. Speaking of which, for now only LG V20 users will be able to take advantage of the new feature. Also keep in mind that the device in question needs to be purchased from Freedom Mobile and not from somewhere else.

What’s the big fuss around Wi-Fi calling? In addition to offering customers a cheaper alternative to their phone plans, one of the main benefits phones with Wi-Fi calling is that they seamlessly switch between cellular and Wi-Fi when needed. It also means if you’re in an area with spotty network coverage–Wi-Fi can save you.

Basically instead of using a carrier’s network connection, users can make phone calls via a Wi-Fi network. That could mean you can rely on a Wi-Fi connection you have at home, or simply any Wi-Fi hotspot available in town.

Freedom Mobile currently has a limited portfolio of devices which includes the LG V20, ZTE Grand X 4, Samsung Galaxy A5 and LG G6, as well as the new Samsung Galaxy S8. That’s because the carrier is using the Band 66 LTE which is yet to be widely deployed worldwide. Nevertheless, these models might also get Wi-Fi calling under Freedom in the near future.

[Freedom Mobile]

The post Freedom Mobile Now Offers Wi-Fi Calling appeared first on Android in Canada Blog.

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Samsung and LG Already Working on a True Bezeless Display

We’ve seen a few so-called bezeless smartphones arrive on the market including the Galaxy S8, LG G6 or Xiaomi Mi MIX. However, all the models mentioned above aren’t exactly true bezeless smartphones, because they still retain at least a pretty thick lower bezel.

But in the near future, we might get to see true bezeless smartphone make an appearance into the world. According to reports that have appeared online, both Samsung and LG are working on smartphone products which feature curved displays on all four sides. This translates into these future phones having a 98% percent screen-to-body ratio.

When it launched the Mi MIX, Xiaomi said the phone features a 91.3% screen-to-body ratio, so we can only begin to image how a 98% one might end up looking like.

However, the report does say that LG and Samsung are facing some difficulties in producing such displays including issues with the lamination process. The current lamination standard doesn’t allow the display’s four corner to register a user’s touch, thus making them quite useless – at least in this experimental phase.

According to the information at hand, Samsung is looking to show a prototype of such a display early next year. But don’t hold your breath, true bezeless smartphones are still far from becoming a consumer product.

[Android Authority]

The post Samsung and LG Already Working on a True Bezeless Display appeared first on Android in Canada Blog.

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Top 10 Android app updates this week: Discord, Spotify Music

Welcome back to our weekly Top 10 Android App Updates column, where we take a look at the most frequently upgraded apps for the week. We’ve found that one of the best ways to discover useful apps is to find the ones that are actually being updated by the developers rather than selecting the apps with the most installs. As in the past, we’re going to filter out minor updates for the super-popular apps that have over 10 million installs, but we’ll make exceptions for apps that have had significant updates. We hope you enjoy this weekly feature and that you discover some apps that end up being useful.

ESPN - Version 5.7.0


What’s new in this version:

  • Introducing Homescreen Video. The best clips of the day, breaking news, and your favorite teams’ videos.
  • Ready for the NBA Playoffs? Log in with your TV Provider in Settings to get the best of the playoffs streaming live on your homescreen.
  • Africa – Kwese Edition. Looking for South African Premiership coverage? Switch to the Africa edition to get the best regional coverage of African sports.
  • Bug fixes and performance optimizations.


Pocket – Version 6.5.0


What’s new in this version:

  • New app icon
  • Increased maximum speed for Listen (TTS)
  • No longer including extra quotes when sharing text
  • Improvements to Edit Profile screen
  • Other miscellaneous bugs and crashes fixed


Discord - Version 3.5.7


What’s new in this version:

  • We found Search hiding in the tall grass! With that fancy magnifying glass, can you see why kids love <popular copyrighted brand name breakfast food?
  • You can pick your friends, you can pick your nose… and you can also pick the order your servers are in, now that server sorting is on Android.
  • Performance buffs to media picker. Gotta go fast.
  • Squashed lots of other bugs. Slimy, yet satisfying!


Android Messages  - Version 2.2.0

Android Messages

What’s new in this version:

  • A new name! Messenger is now Android Messages, the messaging app built for Android
  • Bug fixes and stability improvements
  • Simpler sign-up for enhanced features on supported carriers


Gboard - Version 6.2.34


What’s new in this version:

  • Cut, copy, and paste to edit text easily
  • Resize and reposition keyboard
  • New languages (with support for transliteration): Assamese, Bengali, Bodo, Dogri, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Maithili, Malayalam, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Odia, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Santali, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu
  • Additional new languages: Kinyarwanda, Waray


Automatic - Version 3.8.0


What’s new in this version:

  • It’s faster than ever to switch between your trips with the new “previous” and “next” buttons at the top right of the trip details screen. Next!
  • When you reset your check engine light, the issues don’t disappear into the ether anymore. They’re kept safe and sound in the “Past Issues” section.
  • Pro-only: The driving screen is redesigned to make it easier to share your car’s live location.


Google TalkBack – Version 5.2.0

Google TalkBack

What’s new in this version:

  • New Speech Verbosity setting for spoken feedback
  • New earcons
  • Hear feedback when you turn magnification on/off or zoom in/out
  • Hear character count in password fields in Chrome (56+)
  • Shorter delay before usage hints
  • Other fixes and improvements


Android Pay – Version 1.20.154

Android Pay

What’s new in this version:

  • You can now pay with a card other than your default. Just open the app and tap on the card right before you pay.
  • Bug fixes and improvements.


Super Mario Run – Version 2.1.0

Super Mario Run

What’s new in this version:

  • The maximum number of Toads that can live in your kingdom has increased to 99,999.
  • Player icon improvements. You can now display your customized Mii character from Miitomo to really show off your fashion sense! (Note: Miitomo is required to use this feature. Miitomo is not available in all countries/regions.)
  • You can now find friends from your Nintendo Account.
  • Google Play achievements have been implemented.
  • Other changes and improvements.


Spotify Music - Version

Spotify Music

What’s new in this version:

  • Behind the Lyrics takes the same annotations from Genius and bakes them directly into the Spotify app.


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Amazon is ending its Underground 'Actually Free' app program

Amazon's Appstore for Android has always been at a disadvantage compared to the Play Store. It wasn't included on devices other than its own Fire tablets, and the Play Store has a lot more content. Amazon has tried to entire users to get apps from the Appstore with various promotions and free apps. Back in 2015, Amazon launched the Actually Free program, which offered paid apps and games at no cost.

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Amazon is ending its Underground 'Actually Free' app program was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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BLU R1 Plus launching today with 5.5-inch screen and 4000mAh battery

The latest Android smartphone from BLU Products has arrived.

The BLU R1 Plus launched today as the follow-up to last year’s BLU R1 HD. The R1 Plus offers several upgrades over the R1 HD, including a larger 5.5-inch 1280×720 display (the R1 HD has a 5-inch display), 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage (the R1 HD has 1GB/8GB and 2GB/16GB models), and a beefy 4000mAh battery (the R1 HD comes with a 2500mAh battery).

Also included with the BLU R1 Plus is a 13-megapixel rear camera with flash and 1080p video capture, a 5-megapixel front-facing camera with flash and wide angle lens, and a MediaTek 6737 octa-core processor. The R1 Plus comes with Android 6.0, but BLU says that an update to Android 7.0 is in the works.

The BLU R1 Plus is a GSM unlocked smartphone, and it’s compatible with AT&T and T-Mobile in the US. Specifically, it includes GSM 850/900/1800/1900MHz, HSPA 850/1700/1900/2100MHz, and LTE bands 2/4/7/12/17. Also of note is that the R1 Plus includes support for T-Mobile VoLTE, but not Wi-Fi Calling.

The BLU R1 Plus is now available from Amazon for $159.99, but BLU does say that it’ll be available for $109.99 for 24 hours starting tomorrow, April 29. Best Buy lists the R1 Plus on its site, too, but the device appears to be out of stock as of this publication.

What do you think of BLU’s latest Android phone?

Source: Amazon

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