DxO’s snap-on Android camera is now available to pre-order

DxO One is a compact snap-on camera that drastically improves the quality of your smartphone photos, but only iPhone users have been able to benefit so far. It recently arrived on Android, however, and is now up for pre-order as a fairly attractive “Early Access Pack.” For $ 499, you get the camera, a protective shell and DxO’s PhotoLab software, effectively saving about $ 260. The caveats are that there’s still no shipping date, and the device only works on newer models that have built-in USB Type-C ports.

The DxO One is one of the few survivors of the “camera phone” era of a few years ago, with the most notable contenders at the time being Sony’s QX10 and QX100 models. DxO’s model likely struck a chord because of its more practical direct physical interface and relatively compact, pocketable size.

At the same time, you’re getting a large 1-inch, 20.2-megapixel sensor and f/1.8, 32mm equivalent fixed lens that gives you photo quality akin to a nice compact camera like Sony’s RX100 V — better than any small-sensor smartphone can manage. However, if you’re okay with pairing your phone wirelessly, you’d be better off spending a bit more on a dedicated camera like one of Sony’s previous RX100 III and IV models or Panasonic’s Lumix LX10.

Supported mobile phones are the HTC U11, Huawei Mate 9, Huawei P10, LG G6, LG V20, Moto Z, Nexus 5X, Nokia 8, Nubia Z11 mini, Samsung Galaxy A5 2017, Samsung Note 8, Samsung Galaxy S8 and Huawei Honor 9. You can also select “other” and specify your brand of phone, and hope for the best.

As mentioned, the DxO One for Android is on pre-order for $ 499 including the Outdoor Shell and cable back door, along with the DxO PhotoLab software. It’ll be able to do most of what the iOS version can, but some recently announced features like time lapse and Facebook Live streaming will come later.

Via: Android Central

Source: DxO

Engadget RSS Feed

Google Play Music’s New Release Radio is available for all users

Google has officially announced New Release Radio, a station on Google Play Music that provides users with a daily selection of new songs they may like based on their listening history. The feature has actually been out in the wild for almost a month now, but originally it was positioned as an exclusive for Samsung users (though neither Google nor Samsung made an official announcement).

Now, Google is saying that it was “gathering feedback” from Samsung users before officially rolling it out to everyone — but the screenshots we saw from users on Reddit last month clearly called it a “Samsung exclusive” feature. Oddly enough, Reddit also quickly discovered a workaround for people who didn’t have Samsung phones to try the station — I got it working on my iPhone with no fuss.

It’s still not clear whether or not this was always the plan or if Google and Samsung changed course after the confusing rollout of New Release Radio in June — we’ve reached out to Google and will update this post with anything we learn.

Regardless of the back-and-forth here, we’re glad to see New Release Radio available for all Google Play Music users. It’s a smart addition to the service that matches up with some new music discovery features Spotify and Apple Music have offered for a while — and it would have been a shame if only Samsung owners could use it. The jury is still out on whether New Release Radio is as good as Discovery Weekly, but pretty much anyone using Google Play Music should enjoy giving this new station a spin.

Source: Google

Engadget RSS Feed

‘Super Mario Run’ is now available

Finally, there’s a Mario game on smartphones. As promised, Nintendo has released Super Mario Run today, giving iPhone and iPad users a new way to run, leap and spin through the Mushroom Kingdom. It’s an auto-runner, meaning the portly plumber will jog, hop and vault over obstacles automatically. You tap the screen to jump, leaping across gaps and goombas to collect colorful coins. It sounds simple, but there’s a surprising amount of complexity to the platforming. Like Rayman Jungle Run, timing is essential to unlock contextual moves, such as rolls and wall jumps.

The game has a one-time fee of $ 9.99. Nintendo is keen to avoid the free-to-play mechanics that plague so many smartphone games, focusing instead on quality and traditional replayability. The levels are challenging enough, tasking players to collect coins of increasing difficulty. With plenty of stages and worlds to explore, they should keep you preoccupied for hours. There’s also Kingdom Builder, a basic village design mini-game, and Toad Rally, an aysnchronous multiplayer mode that emphasises style over brute-force level completion. The three modes feed into one another too, unlocking one-time “rally tickets,” enemy score multipliers and more.

It’s not all rosy, however. Nintendo has been criticised for demanding an always active internet connection. (The company says it’s to stop piracy.) If you’re the type of person that likes to game on their morning commute, or has to ration a modest data cap each month, this could be a deal-breaker. Regardless, it’s a landmark moment for the company and it’s beloved mustachioed mascot. Miitomo was an interesting experiment, sure, but it pales in comparison to the potential of Super Mario Run. This is a true platformer, albeit one with limited controls, that could make a ton of money and improve Nintendo’s standing in the public conscience.

Source: Super Mario Run (iOS)

Engadget RSS Feed