HTC announces $799 Vive Consumer Edition, pre-orders begin Feb 29 with early April ship date

Along with announcing new mid-range devices at MWC 2016, HTC has announced the price for the Vive Consumer Edition and an early April ship date, with pre-orders beginning on February 29. The final headset features better ergonomics, improved controllers, and smartphone pairing.

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Samsung confirms Chromebook Pro’s May 28 release date w/ $550 pricetag

The Samsung Chromebook Pro, the higher-spec version of the Chromebook Plus that we reviewed earlier this year, is finally coming to the market. After first showing up on Amazon for pre-order last week, Samsung has now confirmed that the long-awaited Chromebook will be available for purchase on May 28th…

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Essential Phone in ‘full mass production” as Rubin confirms next week’s release date reveal

Earlier today, Essential president Niccolo De Masi confirmed more details about the company’s first phone, including retail availability and that the release date will be revealed next week. Andy Rubin has now announced that the Essential Phone is currently in mass production.

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This week’s top stories: Google’s ‘taimen’ phone, Galaxy S8 release date, hands-on w/ the Project Jacquard Levi’s jacket, Assistant & more

In this week’s top stories: Google’s ‘taimen’ Pixel follow-up, Galaxy S8 specs & release date, hands-on with the Project Jacquard Levi’s jacket, Google Assistant & Home, and much more.  more…

KGI corroborates Galaxy S8 specs & April 21 release date, projects slower sales compared to Galaxy S7

Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities is today out with a new investor note concerning the upcoming Galaxy S8 release. Kuo has made a name for himself as being one of the most reliable Apple analysts in the world, but today’s report focuses entirely on Samsung and corroborates a variety of details about what we’re expecting to see at the company’s Galaxy S8 media event on March 29th.

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Huawei P9 release date seemingly scheduled for April 9

During the past week, several new details have emerged pertaining to the design and specifications of Huawei’s next big smartphone announcement. We’ve seen the device from virtually every angle, and read through a list of specifications we’re expecting to see in the Huawei P9. Earlier today, reliable leaker Evan Blass tweeted out a possible scheduled release date.

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‘Save the Date’: Google is holding a mysterious competition for devs, possibly for I/O 2017 tickets

Update 3: It’s not clear who is getting these or why, but some smart developers who solved the puzzle early do indeed seem to be receiving free tickets to I/O (via Twitter DM from @GoogleDevs).

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Update 2: The puzzle has been solved. No free tickets to be had. :(

Update: Google’s I/O website has been updated for I/O 2017, although no details have been provided yet.

The Google Developers Twitter account tweeted out a cryptic message (with a link to a cryptic website) this afternoon, which means that Android and Google developers might have a chance to win something important — although we have no idea what that might be yet. The use of the ‘#savethedate’ hashtag, however, suggests that this might be related to Google I/O 2017.

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Talking Schmidt: Makes thinly-veiled attack on Apple Music as elitist and out of date, scores own goal

Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Google parent company Alphabet, has made a thinly-veiled attack on Apple Music in a BBC op-ed on artificial intelligence. He described human-curated music selections as a decade out of data and an elitist approach.

A decade ago, to launch a digital music service, you probably would have enlisted a handful of elite tastemakers to pick the hottest new music.

Today, you’re much better off building a smart system that can learn from the real world – what actual listeners are most likely to like next – and help you predict who and where the next Adele might be … 

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