With so many price comparison sites, finding deals online is relatively easy as long as you are on a desktop. Things get a lot more complicated on mobile apps, however, especially if your smartphone is the main way you get online, as it is for many people in India. Voodoo, which describes itself as “a layer of black magic over your apps,” wants to help Indian consumers save money by helping them compare services in different apps without having to install a bunch of new ones.
Voodoo launched its Android app last week (an iOS version is in the works) and just received $1 million in seed funding from SAIF Partners. Right now Voodoo compares fares, prices, and coupons across different ridesharing apps and major e-commerce stores, but founder Mohit Mittal says it aspires to do more than find deals and will use its new capital to push out new features on a regular basis.
To use Voodoo, you download its app, which then runs in the background of your device. When you open a ridesharing or e-commerce app (Voodoo is currently integrated with more than 25 apps, including Ola, Uber, TaxiForSure, FlipKart, Snapdeal, and Amazon) and type in your destination or a product, Voodoo’s icon appears and shows you a list of similar options in other apps, even if you haven’t downloaded them yet. You can click on the menu to go directly to listing in the other app or download it.
It's kind of bonkers that Apple doesn't already have a retail presence in India, a country with some 1.25 billion people, but that's the world we live in. For a little bit longer anyway. Cupertino's working to address this by partnering with Tata (yes, them) to put Apple shops inside several Croma stores in the region, according to The Times of India. The current plan is to open by next month's Diwali festival of lights. The Times also reports that because Apple hasn't set up shop on its own because it's been unable meet a mandatory ruling regarding "local-sourcing norms" for a foreign investment in retail.
Allying with Croma sidesteps that; Apple devices are available through other means in the country, but apparently something akin to a traditional Apple store doesn't exist. To that end, decor and employee training will come from the tech giant itself, much like domestic locations do. Why's this all so important? Well, many in tech (including Xiaomi) feel the country's the next big thing in terms of expansion.
Adobe is making it easier to work with PDF files stored in the cloud, thanks to a new partnership with Dropbox that connects users of the Acrobat PDF editing and viewing products with documents stored in the cloud storage firm's online locker. Starting Tuesday, users will be able to link their Dropbox accounts with Adobe's Acrobat Reader and Acrobat DC desktop apps, and then edit any PDFs they have stored in Dropbox's cloud from Acrobat, without having to go digging for the right file.
On the desktop, that doesn't seem like much of a bonus, since it's already possible to open files from a Dropbox folder that's stored on a user's computer with those apps. However, the companies will soon be rolling out an integration for iOS so mobile users who would otherwise have to flip between different apps in order to open their files won't need to.
As part of that integration, when users open a PDF in the Dropbox app on their iOS devices, a little bubble will pop up informing them that they can work more productively with the document using Acrobat. Having that bubble is a win for Adobe, which has to stand out among a sea of other PDF authoring and editing apps like Smile Software's PDFpen. Of course, it may also prove annoying for people who enjoyed the unblemished experience of using Dropbox prior to the integration.
We’re neck-deep in smart-home gadgets, and in many cases, each of these connected widgets is controlled by its own app. Build a Wi-Fi savvy house, and your phone could end up with one entire homescreen filled with apps to make all the different pieces toggle, beep, flash, and buzz.
The next stage of the smart-home revolution—the one that promises to gather all our connected in-home gadgets into a cooperative team—involves hubs. These boxes and pucks let us control several devices with one tap, creating the perfect blend of mood lighting, temperature, background music, and televised entertainment all at once.
There are plenty of easy-to-install smart-home systems available, things like WeMo and SmartThings and the Wink Hub. But long before any of those products could be found for a couple hundred bucks at Home Depot, and long before the “Internet of Things” was a buzzword, such integrated systems could only be obtained via a pricey home installation specialist. A leader in this field is Savant, a decade-old company that sells professional (and super expensive) custom installations to control thermostats, lights, blinds, music, and security systems in mansions, castles, and yachts the world over.
Image: Rick Rycroft/Associated Press
No more lost hours in Dubai duty-free shopping — Qantas, Australia's largest airline, is considering plans to fly directly from Australia to the UK.
The capabilities of the Boeing 787-9 mean that a direct route between Perth and London could become tenable, Qantas CEO Alan Joyce told Air Transport World. "The 787- 9 has the range to operate such a route," Joyce said. "This opens up direct service from Australia to Europe for the first time."
Twitter is cracking down on digital media properties that publish highlights of football games on Twitter without permission.
Today, Twitter temporarily suspended the main account run by Gawker Media’s Deadspin sports site, which had been sharing GIF and video highlights of NFL games. Over the weekend, Twitter also suspended an account, @SBNationGIF, run by Vox Media-owned SB Nation* for posting GIFs of college football highlights. It has yet to be reactivated.
According to Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) takedown notices provided to Re/code by Twitter, Deadspin received more than a dozen takedown notices from the NFL. SB Nation received eight takedown notices from XOS Digital, which owns various college football digital broadcasting rights and represents the SEC and Big 12 conferences.
The newest Humble Bundle is online, number 15, and it offers a number of quality indie games, including those outlined in the headline.
For any price you can grab Sir, You Are Being Hunted, Q.U.B.E.: Director's Cut, and Goodbye Deponia, and you also get a 66% off coupon for the Humble Store. Pay more than the average (currently $7.35) and you will also get Skullgirls and all its DLC, Planetary Annihilation, Xenonauts, Gone Home, Deponia, and Chaos on Deponia. Going up to $10 also nets early access to Gang Beasts. Going up to $25 will get you a physical, paintable Gang Beasts figure, and finally going up to $70 gets you a whole collection of Gang Beasts figures based on games featured in the very bundle we are discussing right now.
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