App and Software News

Amazon's Alexa virtual assistant: How to delete the data it records

Amazon's Alexa virtual assistant: How to delete the data it records

With this holiday season, Amazon has released a wave of new products and news, from a water-resistant Kindle Paperwhite to totally free shipping until December 25. Meanwhile, its Alexa virtual assistant is getting upgraded with support for Skype on Echo devices, and a Windows 10 app. While the Google Assistant is arguably the most capable personal AI on the market, its maker is not the only one with deep pockets and high ambitions.

For these assistants to... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Apple Maps is getting updated with street and walkway data collected on-foot

Apple Maps is getting updated with street and walkway data collected on-foot

When Google Maps originally launched in February 2005, it punched a fat hole in the market for GPS navigation devices that has yet to be patched. With this app, you can just use your phone to get around, at no added cost, a far cry from forking over $100 or more for the established gadgets at the time -- then more money for future map updates. Even Apple felt the heat, but it wasn't until 2012 that it produced a... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Google's Pixel phone call screen will start saving transcripts soon

Google's Pixel phone call screen will start saving transcripts soon

With unsolicited calls becoming a growing problem for mobile phone users, Google and other tech companies are coming up with ways to screen the spam. In fact, there's a growing industry of spam blocking apps, and Google has introduced a screening feature baked into its Pixel phones.

While Pixels may not be as widely available as a Samsung phone or iPhone, Google has been known to break out specific apps for any Android user to download, such as... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

France cracks down on GPS revealing police roadside locations

France cracks down on GPS revealing police roadside locations

Getting pulled over by the police can ruin your day. Sometimes a friendly driver might flash their lights at you to warn you of an upcoming speed trap.

Popular navigation apps like Waze (iOS, Android) or Coyote (iOS, Android) let drivers warn each other about accidents, traffic, and the like. French motorists are using the apps to share police roadside check locations, according to Le Parisien.

French police said that exposing police locations undermines counter-terrorism operations,... Read More »

Topics: Travel , Security , Android Software , iOS Software , Android , Apps And Software

Waze's built-in audio player can now stream music, audiobooks, and more

Waze's built-in audio player can now stream music, audiobooks, and more

You're driving your car as Waze guides you on your trip with the usual turn-by-turn directions. And now you feel like riding along hearing a song (side by side). In the past, you'd have to fire up a dedicated audio app to listen to your favorite tunes. Now, Waze is offering a simpler, safer, and more integrated approach.

SEE: The 5 Best Transit Apps To Get You There on Time

Waze has added its own audio player through which you can... Read More »

Topics: Entertainment , Maps , Android Software , iOS Software

T-Mobile reworks its Name ID app to better thwart robocalls

T-Mobile reworks its Name ID app to better thwart robocalls

You answer your phone even though the call is coming from an unknown number. Damn, it's yet another annoying robocaller or spammer. If only you had known. Well, if you're a T-Mobile customer, you now have yet another tool in your arsenal against these calls.

SEE: The definitive guide to stopping robocalls on your mobile phone

T-Mobile's robocaller-blocking Name ID app has been updated for Android and launched as a new app for the iPhone, the carrier has announced.... Read More »

Topics: Communications , Android Software , iOS Software

The 8 best apps for finding unique holiday gifts

The 8 best apps for finding unique holiday gifts

No one wants the gift that keeps on giving. You know the one. That really bad present that gets passed from recipient to recipient till it ends up sad and forgotten at the bottom of a present drawer.

The generic gifts that appeal to everyone -- bottles of wine, cakes and flowers, and the trusty gift cards -- will certainly be enjoyed, but they scream impersonal. See, your friends are unique and their gifts should be as well.

But you don't have... Read More »

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software

App offers personal Net Neutrality check: Are your apps being slowed down?

App offers personal Net Neutrality check: Are your apps being slowed down?

Last December the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted to repeal Net Neutrality. The choice could essentially end free and open internet access.

The concept of Net Neutrality requires telecom providers to not discriminate against different types of content. It also keeps carriers from slowing down service so they can charge users more money, and avoiding conflicts of interest such as throttling Netflix or YouTube if they compete with video services offered by the provider.

After the repeal, researchers from Northeastern University and The University of Massachusetts Amherst... Read More »

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software , Android , Apps And Software

Instagram kicks off crackdown on fake followers, likes, and comments

Instagram kicks off crackdown on fake followers, likes, and comments

Instagram users who turn to certain third-party apps to artificially increase their audience are now on the radar of the popular photo and video sharing site.

SEE: The Best Mobile Internet Apps -- After Your Browser

In a new blog post, Instagram announced that it has started to remove fake likes, follows, and comments from accounts that use third-party apps to boost their popularity. Calling this type of behavior bad for the community, Instagram is alerting the users of such... Read More »

Topics: Digital Photo Software , Social Networking Software , Android Software , iOS Software

iOS users get Google Photos depth editing feature

iOS users get Google Photos depth editing feature

Before Google added depth editing in Portrait mode to its Pixel devices, Apple's iPhone camera was the envy of smartphone photographers when it pioneered the DSLR-like photo technique. Google rolled out adjustable bokeh intensity in Portrait mode in the Google Photos app last month for Android users.

Google has now added the new feature to the iOS version of its Google Photos app (iOS, Android), which can be used to store, organize, backup, and access your digital photos across... Read More »

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software , Android , Apps And Software , Photo Editors

For Black Friday, Adobe slashes 25% off Creative Cloud suite

For Black Friday, Adobe slashes 25% off Creative Cloud suite

Note: CNET's Download.com may earn affiliate commissions when you purchase items using the links featured in this article.

Those who have been tempted to subscribe to Adobe's Creative Cloud but have been put off by the steep monthly price tag may want to check out a new sales promotion.

To kick off Black Friday, Adobe is now offering its Creative Cloud All Apps suite for $39.99 a month, a 25% discount off the regular $52.99. On an annual basis, the promotion... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Guide to Marvel mobile games: Become your favorite superhero

Guide to Marvel mobile games: Become your favorite superhero

The late, great Stan Lee not only revolutionized the comic book industry but also influenced a larger world of entertainment with motion pictures, TV shows, and games featuring the exploits and adventures of our favorite Marvel superheroes. You can imagine yourself as Spider-Man, Iron Man, Captain America, Nick Fury, and other classic characters as you play games not just on your PlayStation or Xbox but on your iPhone, iPad, or Android device. To honor the life and work of Stan... Read More »

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software , Games

The reason Tumblr vanished from the App Store: Child pornography that slipped through the filters

The reason Tumblr vanished from the App Store: Child pornography that slipped through the filters

Those of you looking to download the Tumblr app (Android, iOS) on your iPhone or iPad are unable to get it for now. But the app's vanishing act isn't the result of a technical issue or glitch. Through independent sources, Download.com learned that the app was removed due to child pornography that got past the site's filters.

When Download.com presented these findings to Tumblr, a company spokesperson responded with the following statement:

"We're committed to helping build a safe online... Read More »

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software

GoFundMe campaigns raise millions to give California wildfire victims Thanksgiving meals

GoFundMe campaigns raise millions to give California wildfire victims Thanksgiving meals

California had barely mourned Thousand Oaks shooting victims when a string of new wildfires broke out in cities like Paradise and Ventura.

The fires have burned for more than a week and claimed dozens of lives. The 2018 wildfire season has been the worst on record, with more than 7,500 fires destroying millions of acres.

Thousands of people are missing and more than 8,000 families are homeless this holiday season. People around the world are using the GoFundMe app (iOS,... Read More »

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software , Android , Apps And Software

Pandora Premium music streaming comes to Amazon Echo devices

Pandora Premium music streaming comes to Amazon Echo devices

Amazon has been pretty busy lately, with advance movie screenings, Skype integration, and free shipping for everyone until December 25, just to name a few. Meanwhile, its streaming services are still trucking, but it's not afraid of a little competition on its own platform.

The company previously brought Spotify (Android, iOS), Pandora, iHeartRadio and others to its Echo smart devices -- even letting you choose them as defaults over its own Amazon Music -- and today... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Amazon Prime users offered advance screening of Aquaman movie on December 15

Amazon Prime users offered advance screening of Aquaman movie on December 15

While Amazon Prime is most associated with free two-day shipping, and perhaps its video and music streaming services, the company is not afraid to step outside of its comfort zones with new perks for its subscribers. But perhaps with Amazon's recent forays into feature film distribution and production, it's latest offer isn't all that unexpected.

Today, Amazon announced that it's providing an advance theater screening of Aquaman on December 15 for a single show at 7 PM, one... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Microsoft briefly tests putting ads in the Windows 10 Mail app

Microsoft briefly tests putting ads in the Windows 10 Mail app

If there's anything that free services have taught us over the last decade or so, it's that they usually pay their bills by making the customer the product. In the case of social media, your personal details are hoovered up and sold for targeted advertising. In the case of webmail like Gmail, Google uses low-key text ads, but Microsoft has elected not to do so for its rival Outlook.com.

However, a recent experience with Outlook.com by Italian blog Aggiornamenti Lumia... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Amazon Echo smart speakers now have Alexa-powered Skype calling

Amazon Echo smart speakers now have Alexa-powered Skype calling

When Amazon's Alexa virtual assistant arrived on the company's Echo smart speakers in 2014, a legion of iOS users who had been stuck with Siri discovered something that Android users already knew: Virtual assistants can actually be impressive when armed with good voice recognition tech and integrated services. Partly as a result of this revelation, Alexa's popularity boomed, and Amazon keeps adding features to keep things interesting.

The latest item on the docket is Skype calling integration for Amazon's Echo line... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Google's latest Wear OS update promises better battery life

Google's latest Wear OS update promises better battery life

One of the more frustrating aspects of smartwatches is their battery life. Unless you charge them every night, your device can conk out at the most inopportune time.

With its latest update, Google is now trying to help Android Wear OS smartwatches last longer without a recharge. System Version: H, an update to Google's Wear OS, will be rolling out over the next few months, according to Google's support page. The update includes two features geared toward battery power.

SEE:... Read More »

Topics: Battery Utilities , Android Software , iOS Software , Android

Emergency app saved man from heart attack, and here's how it works

Emergency app saved man from heart attack, and here's how it works

When Mark Lee had a heart attack in the central business district of Perth, Australia, he opened a smartphone app and dialed 000. One block away, a notification popped up on Danny Rummukainen's phone and he rushed to help.

News First reported that Lee was dead for 12 minutes before the first responders ahead of the ambulance brought him back.

Lee's rescuers used the St. John First Responder app (iOS, Android), which notifies those qualified in... Read More »

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software , Android , Apps And Software , Educational Software