TIME Gadgets

Motorola Phone Promises 48-Hour Battery Life

Droid Turbo
Motorola's DROID Turbo smartphone promises 48-hour battery life Motorola

Looking for an Android smartphone with a huge battery that just won’t quit? You may want to check out Motorola’s newest entry in its DROID line of phones, the 5.2-inch DROID Turbo. The device will be available through Verizon Wireless starting on Thursday, October 30.

The most compelling feature of the DROID Turbo is easily its huge 3900-mAh battery. It promises to last a full 48 hours of mixed use on a single charge – approximately double the life of the Apple iPhone 6 Plus. And when time is a factor, you’ll be glad to know the DROID Turbo charges quick: You can get up to eight hours of power out of a brief 15-minute charge when you use the included Motorola Turbo Charger.

The DROID Turbo’s other features are no slouches, either: A 2.7GHz quad-core Snapdragon 805 processor powers the phone, the same chip found in the powerful Google Nexus 6 (also by Motorola). The 5.2-inch Gorilla Glass screen, meanwhile, delivers stunning 565 pixels-per-inch quad-HD resolution, perfect for watching the 4K video shot from the Turbo’s 21-megapixel camera. And lest you wonder, yes, the DROID Turbo comes pre-loaded with Android 4.4.4 KitKat, the latest build of Google’s mobile operating system.

The DROID Turbo will be available with 32 gigabytes of storage in your choice of Metallic Black, Metallic Red and Ballistic Nylon colors for $199 with a new two-year Verizon contract. A 64-gigabyte version will be available in Ballistic Nylon only at a price of $249 with a two-year contract. To learn more about the new DROID Turbo smartphone, visit the Motorola blog.

This article was written by Fox Van Allen and originally appeared on Techlicious.

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TIME apps

Download These 5 Smartphone Apps for a Safer Halloween

Have fun and stay safe this Halloween with these apps

Talk about a candy-crush saga: This Friday, the nation’s kids will take to the streets to collect a dentist’s ransom in sugary treats. It’s all good — if a little fattening — fun, but not without a few risks.

For example, some of those streets may be dark. Certain candies could be on the FDA’s recall list. And how well do you really know your neighbors, especially the ones a few blocks over? There might be houses on the route that are best avoided.

It’s okay to worry — that’s what parents do, after all — but if you’re armed with a smartphone, you can make Halloween a bit less of a fright-night. For starters, use the built-in flashlight app to help everyone navigate poorly lit sidewalks. Then fire up these five safety-minded apps. They’re all free and guaranteed to give you some added peace of mind.

1) Life360

Price: Free

So your kids want to go out on their own this year? Guess it had to happen sometime, but you’re still allowed to require one condition: a location-tracking app. Life360 lets you view your trick-or-treaters’ whereabouts on a map, and even create virtual fences so you know if they’ve roamed outside approved territory. The apps are free and available for all three major smartphone platforms: Android, iOS, and Windows Phone. Just make sure to get it installed and tested before Friday. Any last-minute delay in letting the kids hit the streets could impact your Almond Joy take.

2) Recalls (iOS) / Recall Watch (Android)

Price: Free

Though it’s unlikely that mountain of fun-size candy bars will cause any more harm than a stomachache, you never know when the Food and Drug Administration will report a contaminated this or tainted that. Before you let the kids tuck into their haul, take a quick peek at one of these FDA-recall apps to make sure there’s nothing candy-specific. And try to resist making one up. “Sorry, kids, looks like the Milky Ways have Mom-enella. I’ll have to confiscate them.”

3) Sex Offender Search (iOS) / Sex Offender Search (Android)

Price: Free

It’s not fun to think about who might be living just around the corner, but obviously parents should know if there’s a registered sex-offender on the trick-or-treating route. These eponymous apps come from different developers, but they accomplish the same core function: display a map of your area and the names and addresses of any residents listed on the National Sex Offender Registry. In most cases, you can even see the person’s mugshot and a summary of their charges.

4) FBI Child ID

Price: Free

It’s even less fun to think about the horrors of child abduction, but the truth is it happens — and the more information you can share with authorities, the better. The FBI’s Child ID app lets you create a complete identification record for each child: height, weight, date of birth, distinguishing features, and so on. A few taps is all it takes to call 911 and/or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and then to transmit your child’s info if necessary. Here’s hoping you never have to use it.

5) American Red Cross First Aid

Price: Free

A trip around the block in the dark while wearing an ill-fitting mask? What could possibly go wrong? Most likely, a trip and fall resulting in a scraped knee or elbow. Worse still, a twisted ankle or broken wrist. And there’s always the risk of choking while scarfing caramels, to say nothing of the stomachache that can follow downing a pile of them. For treating these and other ailments, the Red Cross’ app provides information, illustrations, and in some cases instructional videos. Needless to say, it’s handy for the other 364 days of the year as well.

TIME White House

White House Computer Networks Hacked

Early morning sunrise is seen over the White House in Washington, Oct. 28, 2014.
Early morning sunrise is seen over the White House in Washington, Oct. 28, 2014. Pablo Martinez Monsivais—AP

Russian hackers suspected

Hackers believed to be employed by the Russian government breached White House computer networks in recent weeks, temporarily disrupting services.

Citing unnamed sources, the Washington Post reported there was no evidence that hackers had breached classified networks or that any of the systems were damaged. Intranet or VPN access was shut off for a period but the email system was never downed. The breach was discovered two to three weeks ago, after U.S. officials were alerted to it by an unnamed ally.

“On a regular basis, there are bad actors out there who are attempting to achieve intrusions into our system,” a White House official told the Post. “This is a constant battle for the government and our sensitive government computer systems, so it’s always a concern for us that individuals are trying to compromise systems and get access to our networks.”

Cybersecurity firms in recent weeks have identified NATO, the Ukrainian government and U.S. defense contractors as targets of Russian hackers thought to be working for the government.

[The Washington Post]


TIME Video Games

Judge Dismisses Manuel Noriega’s Call of Duty Lawsuit

(L) Panamanian strongman Manuel Antonio Noriega takes part in a news conference at the Atlapa center in Panama City on Oct. 11,1998.(R) The character Noriega claims was created in his likeness.
Panamanian strongman Manuel Antonio Noriega (left) sues Activision over a portrayal of him in Activision's Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 game (right) Alberto Lowe—Reuters; Activision/AP

The former dictator of Panama sought damages for a character based on him

A California judge Tuesday threw out a lawsuit filed by former dictator Manual Noriega against a video game he claimed depicted him in a bad light.

Manuel Noriega, who ruled Panama for most of the 1980s, sought charges in July against video game publisher Activision, for creating a character based on him without permission in Call of Duty: Black Ops II, Wall Street Journal reported. Noriega said the 2012 shooter game unlawfully depicted him “as a kidnapper, murderer and enemy of the state,” according to court documents.

Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge William H. Fahey tossed the lawsuit on grounds that Noriega’s likeness was sufficiently “transformative”–meaning that its use was adopted for the sake of commentary or expression. Fahey also argued that the video game did not benefit from Noriega’s inclusion, as the former soldier and convicted drug trafficker had argued.

“The Court concludes that the marketability and economic value of the challenged work in this case comes not from Noriega, but from the creativity, skill and reputation of defendants,” Fahey wrote in court documents.

The dismissal was supported by former NYC major and Activision co-counsel Rudy Giuliani, who called Noriega’s claims “audacious,” as it touches on the issue of the many other video games and works of art that draw from and freely interpret historical or political figures.

“This ruling is an important victory and we thank the court for protecting free speech,” said Rudy Giuliani. “This was an absurd lawsuit from the very beginning and we’re gratified that in the end, a notorious criminal didn’t win. This is not just a win for the makers of Call of Duty, but is a victory for works of art across the entertainment and publishing industries throughout the world.”

TIME Earnings

This Is the Single Craziest Number in Facebook’s Earnings Report

Facebook Inc. Opens New Data Center In The Arctic Circle
A Facebook Inc. "Like" logo sits on display at the company's new data storage center near the Arctic Circle in Lulea, Sweden, on June 12, 2013. Bloomberg—Getty Images

There are a whole lot of Facebook addicts out there

Facebook put up a lot of impressive numbers in its third quarter earnings report Tuesday: 1.35 billion monthly active users, $3.2 billion in revenue, $800 million in profit. But the number that may be most surprising is one that rarely gets harped on in the media: 864 million daily active users.

This figure is the true metric driving the company’s runaway growth. To make money, Facebook needs to serve you ads—lots of ads—as you peruse its site. Obviously these daily users are soaking up a lot more ads than people who just check in once a month. Perhaps more importantly, the figure shows that Facebook is able to maintain its hold on users’ attention even as it stuffs more features (like auto-playing videos) and ads onto its site. In fact, the percentage of daily active users in the quarter, out of the total number of monthly active users, was 63%, up from about 59% in the previous quarter.

This impressive retention rate helps explain why Facebook has said it will take on additional expenses in the future to expand staff and pursue more acquisitions—the company believes it knows what is users want, and it seemingly has the stats to back up the claim.

TIME Companies

Facebook Creams Expectations While Twitter’s User Growth Stumbles

This picture taken with a fisheye lens shows a man walks past a big logo created from pictures of Facebook users worldwide in the company's Data Center, its first outside the US on November 7, 2013 in Lulea, in Swedish Lapland. JONATHAN NACKSTRAND—AFP/Getty Images

The social media titans are having very different weeks

Another quarter, another chance for Facebook to easily beat Wall Street’s expectations. The world’s largest social network now has 1.35 billion monthly active users, and it generated $3.2 billion in revenue and more than $800 million in profit from them in the third quarter. Facebook’s woes trying adapt its business to mobile now seem like a distant memory, as mobile now makes up two-thirds of the company’s ad revenue. (Despite this success, Facebook’s stock is down more than 10% in after-hours trading after the company said it expects expenses for the year to outpace initial forecasts, though it remains to be seen how the stock will behave after investors have had a night to process the news.)

Twitter, Facebook’s most direct competitor, is having a very different week. The company’s stock plunged 10% after it released its quarterly earnings report Monday, not because of the company’s paltry profits—investors don’t expect the social network to make much money in the near term—but rather because Twitter increasingly looks like it won’t be able to approach anything near Facebook’s scale. Twitter added 13 million monthly active users during the quarter, for a total of 284 million. Facebook added about 30 million, and it will probably continue to increase the gap for the foreseeable future.

There are several reasons Twitter’s user and financial growth is trailing Facebook’s. For one, Facebook’s users are much, much more engaged with their social network than Twitter’s. Less than half of Twitter’s users visit the site daily in its top 20 markets, compared to 63% for Facebook globally. The number of timeline views each Twitter user sees also decreased during the quarter, both year-over-year and compared to the second quarter. Twitter just has not proven itself to be a necessity in its users’ lives to the same extent Facebook has.

As a business, Twitter also lacks Facebook’s monetization opportunities. Twitter ads mostly hew to the typical 140-character format, though some have images. Facebook, meanwhile, successfully managed to make auto-playing video a staple in users’ News Feeds this year and is slowly experimenting with using the format for ads, which are sure to command a high price. More broadly, Facebook says its ads can be highly targeted because its users disclose their true identities and countless data points about their lifestyles and preferences. Twitter’s view of its mostly anonymous users is relatively opaque by comparison.

But perhaps the biggest thing separating the two companies is the way they’re run. Facebook will gleefully shove any changes down users’ throats and force them to adapt. The initial introduction (and constant revamping) of the News Feed, the ratcheting down of the organic reach of Page posts and the ongoing tweaks to its privacy policy are good examples. If any of these moves have bred resentment toward the company (Facebook has previously found a spot on lists of the most hated companies in America), it has not hurt business or even broad user engagement.

Twitter, meanwhile, has seen relatively few changes to its core interface since it launched. Sure, Twitter.com got a much-needed overhaul in 2011 and earlier this year profile pages were retooled to resemble Facebook’s Timeline pages, but the core Twitter experience has basically remained untouched. It’s a barrage of super-short messages presented in chronological order, sometimes organized by a set of commands so obtuse they require a glossary — though Twitter is experimenting with showing users tweets from accounts they don’t necessarily follow.

That simply may not be enough to entice the average Internet user. CEO Dick Costolo said Monday that the social network must increase “its overall pace of execution” in introducing new features that make the site more understandable to laymen. But unless they’re willing to rethink the service from the ground up, it’s not clear any amount of tinkering will allow Twitter to achieve his stated goal: building the “largest daily audience in the world.”


Report: FBI Created Fake News Article With Spyware to Track Suspect

FBI Director Robert Muller Speaks About Bureau Reforms
The Federal Bureau of Investigation seal is shown at the FBI Headquarters July 26, 2006 in Washington, DC. Mark Wilson—Getty Images

The FBI maintains that its fake news article was justified

The FBI created a fake Seattle Times article containing surveillance software in order to track a school bomb-threat suspect in 2007, according to documents obtained by an advocacy group.

The controversy was publicized Monday evening on Twitter by Christopher Soghoian, a technologist at the American Civil Liberties Union in Washington, who linked to the FBI documents (pages 61-62) obtained by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital rights organization. While the FBI’s use of data gathering software in this investigation was reported in 2007 by WIRED, which acquired an FBI affidavit seeking a search warrant for the tool’s use, the latest documents reveal for the first time the FBI’s use of a false news article.

According to the documents, the link to the article was “in the style of the Seattle Times” and used a false Associated Press byline. The article, titled “Bomb threat at high school downplayed by local police department,” was mocked up with subscriber and advertising information.

The link was then e-mailed to the to the MySpace account of the suspect, who police believe was responsible for a series of bomb threats at Timberline High School in Lacey, Wash. When clicked on, the link would deploy FBI software to track his location and computer IP address.

“We are outraged that the FBI, with the apparent assistance of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, misappropriated the name of The Seattle Times to secretly install spyware on the computer of a crime suspect,” said Seattle Times Editor Kathy Best in a statement Monday evening.

AP’s Director of Media Relations Paul Colford also criticized the FBI’s actions, writing in a statement that, “We are extremely concerned and find it unacceptable that the FBI misappropriated the name of The Associated Press and published a false story attributed to AP. This ploy violated AP’s name and undermined AP’s credibility.”

The FBI in Seattle maintains that its technique was justified in locating the suspect, who was arrested on June 14, 2007, two days after the dateline that appeared on the agents’ e-mail correspondence discussing the plan.

“Every effort we made in this investigation had the goal of preventing a tragic event like what happened at Marysville and Seattle Pacific University,” Frank Montoya Jr., an FBI agent overseeing its Seattle operations, told the Seattle Times. “We identified a specific subject of an investigation and used a technique that we deemed would be effective in preventing a possible act of violence in a school setting.”

A spokeswoman for FBI’s Seattle unit also defended the strategy to the Seattle Times, arguing that the FBI did not use a “real Seattle Times article, but material generated by the FBI in styles common in reporting and online media.”

TIME Research

Google Is Working on a Pill That Can Catch Diseases Earlier

A pill that can detect the signs of diseases, including cancer

Google has plans to design an ingestible pill that detects the presence of malignant cells and other signs of disease, the company said Tuesday.

The pill would contain tiny magnetic particles that would travel through a patient’s bloodstream and register the presence of chemicals or cells associated with diseases like cancer on a little device, the Associated Press reports. The goal would be to allow patients to monitor their health in real-time to catch a potential illness before it’s even diagnosable.

The project, announced at a tech conference organized by the Wall Street Journal, is the latest life sciences innovation from the Google X facility. The secret research center, home of Google Glass, previously revealed a partnership with pharmaceutical company Novartis to create smart contact lenses that monitor diabetics’ blood sugar levels.



How to Get OS X Yosemite’s Best Feature to Actually Work

Apple Unveils New iPad Models
The new 27 inch iMac with 5K Retina display is displayed during an Apple special event on October 16, 2014 in Cupertino, California. Justin Sullivan—Getty Images

Handoff will change how you use your Mac, iPad, and iPhone

We’ve all been there: You’re poking away at your iPhone when an email comes in. You check the message and decide to dash off a quick reply. But then things get complicated. There’s cutting, pasting, and backspacing. You wish you had replied on your Mac, which is two feet away — but it might as well be two miles from you, because there’s no way you’re abandoning this half-written response.

Handoff, a new feature in OS X Yosemite, makes it possible to quit thumb-strumming that iPhone email and pick it up on your computer, exactly where you left off. Here’s how to make it work.

Step 1: Get the Gear

It wouldn’t be an Apple innovation if it didn’t leave some users feeling left out in the cold. Apple hasn’t posted any technical specifications for Handoff, but the key requirement seems to be that every device needs to have Bluetooth 4.0, also known as Bluetooth LE. This low-energy Bluetooth allows the iPhones, iPads, and Macs to connect to each other wirelessly without eating away at your battery in the process. Compatible Macs include those released between mid-2012 and now. On iOS, compatible devices include iPhones as old as the 4s, the fourth generation iPad, both iPad Airs, all the iPad Mini models, and even the fifth generation iPod Touch. If you have those any of those, make sure your Bluetooth connectivity is turned on in Settings on the iOS hardware and in the System Preferences on your Mac. Also, your iDevices need to have iOS 8 installed.

Step 2: Log Into iCloud

Using the same Apple ID login, sign into Apple’s iCloud services on your computer, phone and/or tablet. (Note: After following all these steps, if your Handoff-compatible devices still don’t detect the feature, logging out of iCloud on the Mac, iPhone and/or iPad is a good way to “reset” the computers’ connection to this service. Then, once they are all disconnected from iCloud, wait about ten seconds, and log them back in.)

Step 3: Turn On Handoff

For such a heralded new feature, Handoff’s settings are buried pretty deep in the devices’ preferences. But because of Apple’s “it just works” mentality, it’s possible that the service has already activated on your devices by default.

On your Mac, open the System Preferences, click on General, and then look near the bottom of the window to toggle on “Allow Handoff between this Mac and your iCloud devices.” If the option isn’t there, then your computer isn’t compatible with Handoff. On your handheld Apple gear, tap on Settings, then General, and finally Handoff & Suggested Apps. Toggle the Handoff switch to the “on” (or green) position.

Below that setting on iOS, there are also toggles for Suggested Apps. These allow other, unfamiliar computers to suggest apps to you in a manner that’s similar to how Handoff works. For example, if you’re at Starbucks, the store’s computer can push their app to your lock screen, “suggesting” you download and use it for convenience’s sake. But some users may feel like this is pushy or a privacy issue — those people should switch the bottom two toggles to “off.” Disabling Suggested Apps will not affect using Handoff on your personal computer.

Step 4: Watch For Handoff Icons

If all of the background technology did what it’s supposed to, Handoff is activated and already operating. You’ll know because app icons will start popping up in new places.

For example, when you’re browsing the web on your iPhone, a Safari icon with a tiny iPhone badge will appear to the left of the Finder icon in the Mac’s dock. Alternatively, if you were on your computer working on a spreadsheet in Numbers, upon waking your iPad you’d find a small Numbers icon at the bottom left of the iOS lock screen (if the Numbers app is installed on your iPad). Swipe that icon up (or click on the Dock icon on your Mac), and it will open not only the app, but also the spreadsheet you were working on at the computer. Or, if your iOS device is already unlocked, double-tap the home button to open the App Switcher, then swipe right, past the home screen, and you’ll get a second chance to hand off your computer’s app to your handheld.

Handoff isn’t just a hack for Apple-made programs; it currently works on a small but growing number of third party iOS apps, including news apps VICE News and the NYTimes (which open the Grey Lady’s stories in Safari on the Mac) and Wunderlist (which has both OS X and iOS apps). But there will certainly be more uses for this technology to come as developers get their hands dirty coding more Handoff-enabled apps.

Read next: These Are the 5 Coolest Features of OS X Yosemite

TIME Video Games

Your Favorite 90s-Era Star Wars Games Are Finally Back

X-Wing GOG/LucasArts

X-Wing, TIE Fighter and more

A slew of classic Star Wars games which vanished along with the 90′s era computers they were designed to run on have been resurrected for modern-day computers.

Gaming site GOG has partnered with Disney Interactive to re-release 20 hit games from LucasArts, including X-Wing and TIE Fighter, as well as the popular adventure series Sam & Max. The titles were a popular request on GOG’s community forum, where fans can wax nostalgic about long-vanished titles and lobby for their return.

Want to try out your old favorites? Head over to GOG, hop in your X-Wing and may the force be with you.

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