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Moto X+1 possibly spotted in new benchmark, brings Snapdragon 800 along for the ride

Phandroid - 1 hour 2 min ago

Moto X gaming performance DSC00728

The Motorola Moto X+1 is another highly anticipated Android flagship due out later this year. Up until now, we haven’t seen much from the device, other than a few rumors and a leaked logo from @evleaks. But today, a Motorola device going by the codename XT912A has popped up in a GFXBench benchmark, leading some to wonder if this could be the sequel to last year’s flagship.

If that codename looks familiar to you, it’s because it’s the exact same one we saw last year which, as it turns out, was in fact the original Motorola Moto X. Motorola has also used this name for the Moto Droid Ultra, just without the “A” at the end. So while it could be a guise for a Motorola DROID Ultra sequel, we’re leaning more towards Moto X+1.

Of course, this new XT912A differs from the original in that it features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor (the CPU most likely powering Motorola’s next–gen X8 chip), Adreno 330 GPU, 5.2-inch 1080p display, 2GB of RAM,  24GB of storage, and running on Android 4.4.3 KitKat. It seems Motorola might be increasing the MP a bit as well, with the latest version reporting 12MP rear/2MP front facing cameras.

Motorola XT912A GFXBench

Pretty much what we’d expect from a Moto X followup. Honestly, if Motorola could find a way to cram these upgrades into the exact same shell as the original Moto X we’d bite. Hard. Throw in some denim for good measure and we’re sure the Motorola Moto X+1 will be an even bigger hit than the original.

[GFXBench | via The Droid Guy]

Benchmarks show new Motorola device with 1080p display and Snapdragon 800

Android and Me - 1 hour 21 min ago

Aside from the Moto X, high end Motorola devices have not garnered much attention. Yes, the Droid line on Verizon is awesome. With the same specs and features as the Moto X, but with their own perks, they’re solid devices. But people haven’t really been paying as much attention to them. Hopefully Motorola’s next devices will be more exciting and interesting.

Our first look at an upcoming device may have just popped up, courtesy of a benchmark. According to the benchmark, the Motorola XT912A will feature a 5.2-inch 1080p display, a Snapdragon 800 processor, and Android 4.4.3. It’s not all that notable, but what is notable is the model number.

Motorola has long moved beyond the 900′s, with the Droid Ultra now having a model number of XT1080. The XT912 was the original Droid RAZR, so the XT912A may be some sort of updated version of the original. If this is really going to be the next RAZR device, I’m pretty excited to see what Motorola will do to connect it to the original. The regress in model number has me pretty curious.

The hardware specs themselves aren’t incredibly impressive, though the processor may very well be a Snapdragon 801 (we’ve seen benchmarks mistake it for an 800 before). I’m really hoping Motorola comes up with something unique and innovative to make this device stand out.

More shots leak of the Android 4.4.3 blue dialer

Android and Me - 1 hour 23 min ago

If these last few Google app leaks are legit, it looks like Google is planning to add all the color back into Android. Honeycomb made everything neon, Ice Cream Sandwich made everything blue, and KitKat made everything white and clean. Now, all these leaks show redesigned Google apps with crazy colors. And while I may not like it, it may be the way Android is heading soon.

Android 4.4.3 dialer leak

The latest leak is another photo of the dialer. The previous photo was leaked courtesy of Google itself, when its Twitter account tweeted out a photo of a dialer. It looked like the current dialer, but the bar on top was blue. This photo furthers the blue theme, but also shows changes in the contact view.

All the contacts now look like Gmail thumbnails, with photos of the person if available, or a colored card with a letter if not. The blue bar at the bottom just adds a bit of colored flare to the previously white app. I must say, it doesn’t look too bad.

The screenshot was allegedly taken from a Nexus 5 running Android 4.4.3, possibly hinting at a Google employee testing the new firmware. However, we’ll have to wait until the official release of 4.4.3 to see if the dialer will actually be redesigned. Do you like the direction that Android is headed?

Google Is Testing A Mobile UI Redesign Called LEGO With Super-Smooth Animations In Search Results (Video Demo)

Android Police - 2 hours 8 min ago

6a00e54ef4f37688340133f18b47f8970b-800wiGoogle is always trying new things, and one of those new things has been left where we can play with it. Yay! The LEGO redesign is an experimental sandbox for mobile search results. The overall look is a little different than the current one, but it's the animations in the results that set it apart. Check out the video below for a demo – left tab is LEGO and right is standard.

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Google Is Testing A Mobile UI Redesign Called LEGO With Super-Smooth Animations In Search Results (Video Demo) was written by the awesome team at Android Police.



Lyft offering free rides for 2 weeks after launching in 24 new cities, now might be a good time to download the app

Phandroid - 2 hours 33 min ago

lyftapalooza-stache.original

Now might be time to download/install the Lyft app, available for free on Google Play. The company just announced on their blog that they’re officially launching Lyft in 24 new markets, bringing the grand total to 60 cities available that have access to Lyft’s ride-on-demand service.

To help celebrate Lyft’s biggest launch day ever, they’re giving away free — yes, free — rides for the next 2 weeks (April 24th, to May 8th) in these newly launched cities. To get started, simply download the Android app and enter in your credit card info (you’ll need a Facebook account to complete registration). A list of the cities new to Lyft (and offering free rides) can be found below.

  • Albuquerque, N.M.
  • Ann Arbor, Mich.
  • Buffalo and Rochester, N.Y.
  • Colorado Springs, Colo.
  • Corpus Christi, TX
  • Fairfield County and New Haven, Conn.
  • Fresno, Modesto and San Bernardino, Calif.
  • Jacksonville, Fla.
  • Kansas City, Mo.
  • Lexington and Louisville, Ky.
  • Lincoln and Omaha, Neb.
  • Memphis, Tenn.
  • Northern New Jersey
  • Oklahoma City and Tulsa, Okla.
  • Raleigh Durham, N.C.
  • Spokane, Wash.
  • Toledo, Ohio
  • Virginia Beach, Va.

If you live outside of one of these areas, you’re still in a bit of luck. As part of a Spring promotion, Lyft is discounting rides even further than their initial 20%-off discount, to a whopping 30% off. Not only that, if you’re new to Lyft, you can still score a free ride (up to $10) by simply entering in the code: 95KCD3 in the “payment” section of the app. For a full list of currently available cities, head here. Enjoy!

Download on Google Play: Lyft

[Lyft | via Re/code]

United Airlines tells customer to remove Google Glass for security reasons

Android and Me - 3 hours 21 min ago

Google Glass is still a young and new technology, and so we always expect to hear of problems arise from its public use. Let’s face it: having a camera strapped to your face will make some people uneasy. However, a Google Glass Explorer was recently involved in her second issue with Glass, this time on a flight.

You may remember Cecilia Abadie, whose first problem with Google Glass was getting a ticket for wearing the unit while driving. She took that case to court and won, setting a precedent for future cases involving Google Glass. This time around, Abadie was told by United Airlines to remove  her Glass on a flight due to security concerns.

Google Glass United Airlines

I'm taking a pic with my cellphone because I'm not allowed to take it with Google Glass. It had to be United the first plane that they asked me to take Glass off because of security concerns. Cecilia Abadie

What kind of security concerns could Google Glass bring up? As she has proven with her image, it’s just as easy to take a photo with a phone as it is with Glass. It’d be even easier with a smartwatch. What is there on a plane that the company wouldn’t want photographed? It just doesn’t make much sense. Plus, if they were prescription glasses, would United have told her to take them off? If you have prescription Glass, you should probably carry a spare set of glasses with you.

This is just one of the hurdles Google Glass and its users will need to overcome while the technology is making its way to the mainstream. Some people will always have trouble getting accustomed to new technology, especially always-present devices like Glass. Hopefully Cecilia will score another win for Google Glass.

Do you think United was right in what it did? Tell us in the comments!

New Duolingo Update Flies In With English Courses For Hindi Speakers, German Lessons For Russians, And More

Android Police - 3 hours 28 min ago

Duolingo-ThumbDuolingo is one of the most simplistic, visually appealing language learning experience someone can come across, and the fact that it's a mobile app they can take anywhere is just one heck of a perk. Today's update doesn't shake things up for existing users, but it has what it takes to bring in many more. Now English courses are available for people who speak Hindi as their native language, Russian speakers have the option to learn German, and German speakers are welcome to learn French.

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New Duolingo Update Flies In With English Courses For Hindi Speakers, German Lessons For Russians, And More was written by the awesome team at Android Police.



Redbox 4.4 Android App Update Focuses On Convenience With New Wish List And Overflow Menu

Android Police - 3 hours 51 min ago

Redbox-ThumbWith all of the video streaming options out there these days, it wouldn't surprise us in the slightest if Redbox isn't the first app that comes to mind when the movie-watching mood strikes. But a new app update has rolled out that freshens things up a bit for anyone who just really likes the feel of a physical disc. Now there's a wish list in the sidebar for the media that is best saved for later.

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Redbox 4.4 Android App Update Focuses On Convenience With New Wish List And Overflow Menu was written by the awesome team at Android Police.



IFTTT version 1.0 rolls into the Google Play Store

Phandroid - 3 hours 51 min ago

ifttt-logo-large

Heads up, IFTTT fans — the app has exited beta and is now available to download free in the Google Play Store. In case you don’t know what it is, IFTTT stands for If This Then That, an acronym that the site’s very function is named for.

If a certain action happens, such as Phandroid posting a news article, then post the title, an image and a link to that article on Phandroid’s Twitter account. That’s just one of many examples of things you can do with IFTTT recipes.

IFTTT for Android is pretty nice because it hooks into Android’s various elements. It can automatically change your wallpaper based on some condition. You can have it send a text to your spouse whenever your location shows that you’ve made it to work or back home. And that’s on top of all the other stuff you can already do over at the IFTTT website. Think tasker, except it has the potential to be a lot more flexible.

We’ve already discussed 9 other great things you can do with them with your phone (such as sending you a text if the CDC reports a zombie outbreak), so be sure to check that out and see if it’s something that could help enhance your life. If you’ve decided you want to give it a go then be sure to head to Google Play for the free download.

Samsung announces the Galaxy Beam 2, resurrecting the built in pico projector

Android and Me - 4 hours 9 min ago

The pico projector has returned! When Samsung released the original Galaxy Beam, I thought that the built-in pico projector was really cool. However, the device wasn’t really talked about much afterwards. I thought Samsung had given up on the technology, but with the release of the Galaxy Beam 2 today, we’re seeing another attempt!

The Galaxy Beam 2 retains the low-end status of its predecessor, sporting a 4.66-inch WVGA display, 1.2GHz quad core processor and a 2600mAh battery. But to offset that, though, you get a freakin’ built-in projector. And in classic Samsung fashion, there are software features that take advantage of the projector, including a clever flashlight.

Sadly, the Galaxy Beam 2 is only being released in China at this time, and it’s doubtful that it’ll expand to many other countries since not many people will buy a device with a WVGA display. Still, it’s awesome that Samsung hasn’t given up on its pico projector tech. Despite releasing so many devices into the market, Samsung still makes some unique products.

Would you ever buy a Galaxy Beam 2? Leave a comment!

Google+ lead Vic Gundotra officially leaving Google

Android and Me - 4 hours 39 min ago

A little over a year after Andy Rubin was replaced as the head of Android at Google, it looks like the big G is undergoing another major executive shake-up.

According to Re/code, Vic Gundotra is leaving Google. Gundotra is the SVP of Social at Google and has helped to push Google+ to the public. A Google spokesperson has confirmed the news of Gundotra’s departure.

Google hasn’t yet revealed who will be taking Gundotra’s place at the helm of Google+, but today’s report claims that it will be David Besbris, who currently works as VP of Engineering for Google+.

There’s no word yet on what Gundotra will be doing post-Google, but it’ll definitely be interesting to see where he ends up. Not only was he a high-ranking exec at Google, but he was the head of Google+ and pushed the social network pretty hard in his years at El Goog, so many folks will be watching to see what he does next.

What do you think that Gundotra has planned for his next move?

Latest Hulu Plus App Update Turns Your Android Device Into A Remote Control For Your PlayStation 3/4 Or Xbox One

Android Police - 4 hours 40 min ago

Hulu-ThumbThe Hulu Plus app is perfectly capable of pumping out videos on its own to a small screen. With a Chromecast plugged into your TV, it's even able to cast content out to the big screen as well. Now the app is gaining a feature that will give it even more control over your viewing experience. Starting with the latest update, Hulu Plus is capable of becoming a remote control for Hulu content streaming from the Xbox One, PlayStation 3, or PlayStation 4.

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Latest Hulu Plus App Update Turns Your Android Device Into A Remote Control For Your PlayStation 3/4 Or Xbox One was written by the awesome team at Android Police.



[Update: no it didn't] Google Glass Explorers shop opens back up for all US residents

Phandroid - 4 hours 53 min ago

Chris Chavez Google Glass watermark

It looks like Google could have been trialing out a free-for-all sale model for the Glass Explorers program in their one day sale a couple of weeks ago. They’ve opened the purchase site back up for anyone in the United States to buy a pair of Google Glass without an invite.

We’re not sure whether this was intentional. If it was, we’re also not sure if this will be a permanent offering until Google starts the consumer-focused Glass launch. Either way, we’re pinging them for comment and we’ll be looking to share anything we find. For now you can take $1,500 of your hard earned money and purchase one at Google’s site if you’re interested.

[Update]: Google has clarified that the link went live to accommodate some folks who were still in the pipeline from last week’s sale, which sounds like they opened it up for those who had troubles submitting the order on that particular day. As such, this isn’t a permanent change — they’ll be shutting that link right back down shortly. Looks like everything has now been marked as out of stock. Bummer.

[Thanks to everyone who sent this in!]

Strangling the Internet: Government headed in disastrous direction [OPINION]

Phandroid - 4 hours 54 min ago

You can help by signing the petition to save the internet!

We may soon be entering an age of digital discrimination, where all websites are not created equal. The government is supporting a law to allow Internet Service Providers like Comcast to charge websites and companies fees to ensure their content is distributed with guaranteed speed to consumers.

obama-wheeler-piggyback Some of today’s most powerful companies were built on the shoulders of the Internet. The US Government seems poised to section off the web into a VIP piggy back riding zone

Regardless of where you place “The Internet” on the list of greatest technological developments of the past century, it’s hard to argue that it hasn’t had the most profound global impact in the shortest period of time. Some of today’s most powerful companies – Google, Facebook, and Twitter – were built on the shoulders of the Internet. Hopeful entrepreneurs and innovators of the future may not have this same luxury: the US Government seems poised to section off the web into a VIP piggy back riding zone.

When you buy internet service from the likes of Comcast and Time Warner Cable you’re essentially paying for access to bandwidth. Up until now, for the most part, all bandwidth is created equal. Whether you’re reading e-mail, watching videos on Youtube, browsing Facebook, or checking up on the latest Android News on Phandroid, you could expect the same consistent speed and levels of service.

That could change. And if it does, it could be a devastating blow to this open and awesome thing we call the Internet.

The United States Government, by way of the FCC, has announced that it supports “fast lanes” for the Internet where companies are able to pay service providers for more and faster bandwidth to consumers. For example, Netflix could work out a deal with Comcast to ensure their content is streamed quick enough to give users a good movie-watching experience.

This helps absolutely nobody- except for the Internet service providers.

This hurts innovators trying to make “the next big thing” who can’t be sure their service is being delivered quickly relative to huge corporate competitors. This hurts huge corporate competitors who can be price gauged by Internet Service Providers if they want to ensure the best possible experience for customers. And this hurts consumers who – when they go online – could get an uneven and unfair experience depending on which site or companies they patronize.

This is bad.

In some regards you can sympathize with with the Internet Service Providers who have to deliver exponentially more bandwidth than in years past. Ten years ago, nobody was streaming HD content to their TV through their Internet on a daily basis, yet these companies are shouldering the increased bandwidth costs.

fcc-logoThe ISPs need to be provided a competitive environment, but the FCC can not allow for net neutrality to be the basis on which that environment is delivered. In 20 years from now, where will the Internet be? If these “fast lanes” are created, I don’t want to know. The government is putting their toes on a slippery slope that could create a very unfortunate and entitled Internet ecosystem. The sense of entitlement should be on the side of consumers, not the corporations and not the government.

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler defended the stance, claiming the notion that they’re “gutting the Open Internet rule” is “flat out wrong”. But the stance is so open to interpretation that it can (and will) eventually be twisted by lobbyists and corporations.

Here are his “I’m talking but not saying anything” assurances:

The same rules will apply to all Internet content. As with the original open Internet rules, and consistent with the court’s decision, behavior that harms consumers or competition will not be permitted.

He also insisted companies would be forced to act in a “commercially reasonable manner.” If you ask me, commercially reasonable would mean keeping net neutrality… neutral… and finding other ways to correct the direction of their business that don’t violate Internet equality.

Edward Wyatt of the New York Times weighed in saying, “big, rich companies with the money to pay large fees to Internet service providers would be favored over small start-ups with innovative business models — stifling the birth of the next Facebook or Twitter.”

Perhaps Michael Weinberg of community advocacy group Public Knowledge said it best, “This standard allows Internet service providers to impose a new price of entry for innovation on the Internet.” And then once you make it, your newly great company will be “taxed” into the ground to ensure your content/service is properly delivered on the web.

If you ask me, one of the most beautiful things of the Internet is the ridiculously low barrier to entry. Almost nothing. And the value to access is astronomical.

Netflix responded to this development by issuing the following statement, “The proposed approach is the fastest lane to punish consumers and Internet innovators.”

Netflix

The more appropriate avenue to address these industry concerns would be to tell Comcast and similar companies to adjust their business model. We’ve seen mobile network providers like Verizon and AT&T deal with the bandwidth burden by adjusting their service packages based on data consumption. It might not be a popular move, but it beats what they’re proposing by light years. I’d be happy to pay a higher price and keep net neutrality intact and I think other consumers would, too, if they knew the potential long-term implications.

The government might think these “fast lanes” are a good idea to help the flow of traffic, but the only thing they’d be supporting is a highway to Internet hell.

Google+ Head Honcho Vic Gundotra Has Announced His Departure From Google [Update: VP Of Engineering Dave Besbris Taking Over G+]

Android Police - 5 hours 5 min ago

Google-plus-iconVic Gundotra came to Google eight years ago after a stint at Microsoft, but today he has announced the end of his tenure at the company. While he didn't cite any specific plans, Gundotra had nothing but kind words for Google and its management. CEO Larry Page even took the time to comment on Gundotra's Google+ post to wish him well.

_3113950-Edit

Gundotra is perhaps best known to the Android community from his appearances on stage at Google I/O.

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Google+ Head Honcho Vic Gundotra Has Announced His Departure From Google [Update: VP Of Engineering Dave Besbris Taking Over G+] was written by the awesome team at Android Police.



Vic Gundotra, the man behind Google+ and Google I/O, is officially leaving Google

Phandroid - 5 hours 11 min ago

Vic Gundotra Google Plus

After almost 8 years with the company, Vic Gundotra — the man behind Google+ — is leaving Google. Gundotra announced the news via his Google+ profile minutes ago and while we don’t know where Vic is headed, is appears Google+ engineer David Besbris has been chosen to be his replacement. Google’s Larry Page chimed in on Vic’s going away post, saying:

“Vic- thank you for a tremendous almost eight years at Google.  You cut your teeth on our mobile apps and developer relations, turning our disparate efforts into something great.  When I first used turn-by-turn navigation, it blew me away.  And, walking onto the stage at I/O last year, it was amazing to see developers so excited about Google.  These were vintage Vic projects.

Then you built Google+ from nothing.  There are few people with the courage and ability to start something like that and I am very grateful for all your hard work and passion.  I really enjoy using Google+ on a daily basis, especially the auto awesome movies which I really love sharing with my family and friends.

Good luck with your next project after Google.  In the meantime we’ll continue working hard to build great new experiences for the ever increasing number of Google+ fans.”

Gundotra’s exit is another recent high-level departure hitting Google in recent months. It wasn’t too long ago we saw Hugo Barra take a job offer in China to help with Xiamoi’s global division, and although he’s still with Google, Andy Rubin recently stepped down from his roll with Android.

Restructuring and departures are normal for any company, and we wish Vic the best of luck in his future endeavors.

[Google+ | via Re/code]

UPDATE: Google Glass store open to everyone again

Android and Me - 5 hours 38 min ago

Miss out on that one-day Google Glass sale earlier this month? Well today’s your lucky day, friend, because Google’s headwear is once again available for anyone to purchase.

The Google Glass store is once again allowing anyone to waltz in and drop $1500 on the wearable device. Consumers can choose between Charcoal, Tangerine, Cotton, Shale and Sky color options for their Glass, and each unit comes with a cable, charger, mono earbud and pouch. Buyers will also get a free shade or frame to attach their Glass to.

Google hasn’t made any announcements about another limited time Glass sale or a full public launch, so it’s not yet clear exactly what’s going on here. All that matters is Glass is once again available to all, so if you’ve been itching to hand over $1500 to become an Explorer, you’d best head on over to the Google Glass store and punch in those credit card digits.

Update: It looks like Google Glass wasn’t available to buy after all. The link is one Google forgot to disable after the initial open sale on the 15th, and those who would try to buy it using that link after the 15th wouldn’t be able to get Glass anyway. Sorry about that!

This link was created to accommodate potential Explorers who were still in the pipeline from last week's sale. We're shutting it down shortly. As always, we will continue to experiment with ways to expand the Explorer program in the weeks and months ahead.Google

Via: Android Community
Source: Google Glass Store
Source:

Phan Favs: What is the best Messaging app? [VOTE]

Phandroid - 5 hours 44 min ago

PhanFavsVOTE sms

Phan Favs is a recurring feature that turns the tables and asks you, the readers, about the best apps and games. It’s your turn to drop some knowledge on us! Read more.

A couple of weeks ago in our inaugural Phan Favs poll we asked about the best weather apps for Android. After an impressive turnout the app that you picked as the best was 1Weather by OneLouder. This week we have another question for you, our insightful readers: what is the best messaging app for Android?

A messaging app can be anything you use to communicate with people. It could be a 3rd-party SMS app, a proprietary messaging service, or even a voice calling app. Android has tons of great messaging apps available. However, the best messaging app is not always the favorite. We want to know which ones you think are the best.

How to vote
  1. Upvote the comment that mentions your pick.
  2. If no one has mentioned your pick write your own comment.

It’s as simple as that. Next Thursday (May 1st) we will compile the results and release the top five apps according to your votes. In order to get a good sample size we need your help in sharing this poll. Click right here to tell your tweet about it, and also alert your favorite developers so they can vote!

 

Google Maps Adds Transit Directions For Brazil In Preparation For The 2014 World Cup

Android Police - 5 hours 53 min ago

thumbIn two months, hundreds of thousands of people will be flocking to cities all over Brazil for the 20th FIFA World Cup. Since getting around in an unfamiliar metropolis can be a bit of a hassle (looking at you, Barcelona), Google has expanded its public transit information for the relevant Brazilian cities. When World Cup fans get to Brazil, they'll be able to look up bus and train info for all twelve cities with scheduled games.

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Google Maps Adds Transit Directions For Brazil In Preparation For The 2014 World Cup was written by the awesome team at Android Police.



Big Android BBQ 2014 set for October 16-18

Phandroid - 5 hours 58 min ago

bbqteaser

Set your calendars, schedule time off from work and start saving for those hotel and airline tickets — the 2014 Big Android BBQ has officially been set for October 16th through the 18th. The fifth annual community BBQ is set in Hurst, Texas again, with the Hurst Conference Center playing host to this wonderful, geeky (or wonderfully geeky) affair.

Beyond hanging out with people just as enthusiastic as you and eating good food, the Big Android BBQ is a productive time where people discuss the mobile industry, development, Android and technology through panels and events. Parties, giveaways and more also add to the whole “you need to be there” factor.

Big_Android_BBQ-Hall

Speakers from deep within the industry such as Noble Ackerson and Steve Kondik tend to make their presence known at the #BBQ, and many more will surely be on tap to spread their wisdom and have a good time. Just take a look at our recollection of 2013′s shindig to see how much fun there is to be had.

Much of the specifics about tickets, hotel and airline packages and more are still being worked out, but it shouldn’t be long before we hear about what 2014′s meetup will have to offer.

[via Google+]

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