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  1. Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Returns on iOS and Android with Missing “Palace Zone” Stage and Knuckles

    Sonic 2 is old enough to drink this year. We feel ancient.

    Want to relive your childhood in glorious modern graphical quality on your mobile device? Sonic the Hedgehog 2's remastered iOS and Android versions debuted today, and we all felt a little bit like it was 21 years ago (when the game debuted, because we're suddenly realizing we're old) all over again.

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  2. Ubuntu’s Ominous Countdown Reveals Ubuntu Phone and Mobile OS

    For days now Ubuntu's site has featured an ominous countdown and the words "So close, you can almost touch it." The countdown ended with the release of a virtual keynote by Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth touting a new mobile version of Ubuntu, and the "Ubuntu Phone." Shuttleworth says the new goal for Ubuntu is to create "one platform for all kinds of computing." The aim is have Ubuntu powering phones, computers, television, and the cloud.

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  3. Instagram Competitor picplz Shutting Down July 3rd

    Sharing photos via mobile applications is certainly the hot thing to do, if Facebook's acquisition of Instagram is any sign, but apparently not hot enough for there to be room in this proverbial town for more than the one major service. One of Instagram's earliest competitors, picplz, has announced that they will be shuttering their service for good come July 3.

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  4. Happy 19th Birthday, Text Messaging!

    On December 3, 1992, Richard Jarvis received the world's first text message on his Orbitel 901 cellphone from Neil Papworth. The text of that first message is a bit premature, saying: "Merry Christmas." In a twist which seems to foreshadow the birth of services like Google Voice and spam texting, this seminal text was sent from a computer.

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  5. Facebook is (Sort Of) Building a Phone, It's Called "Buffy"

    According to AllThingsD, Facebook is allegedly at work with HTC to create their own mobile device based off the Android OS. If their source is to be believed, the device is code-named "Buffy," presumably to slay the vampires of Apple and Google. Though rumors of a Facebook have been circulating for over a year, this news is the first firm evidence of such a device. Despite Facebook's success, it's fair to ask why they would want to tempt fate and launch their own device.

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  6. Smartphone Ownership by Age Group

    Nielsen's third quarter survey of mobile users reveals that a whole load of people are adopting smartphones. Not too shabby a number, 43 percent of all U.S. mobile subscribers have a smartphone. Though the number is a minority, it is only eight percent away from being the majority, which is an impressive feat considering smartphones can be both complicated and are fairly expensive. As one may expect, the majority of the younger mobile market (under the age of 44) owns a smartphone, with 62 percent of smartphone owners being aged 25 to 34. On top of that, the smartphone penetration rate for those aged 18 to 24 and 35 to 44 is 54 percent. As for the age groups younger and older, 40 percent of those aged 12 to 17 have a smartphone, while 40 percent of those aged 45 to 54 have one as well. Only 30 percent of those aged 55 to 64 have a smartphone, though the percent of ownership for that age group is quickly rising, and is the second fastest-growing smartphone penetration age group.

    Android is the most widespread smartphone platform, holding 43 percent of the U.S. market, while Apple holds 28 percent.

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  7. U.S. Expected to Have the Most LTE Connections Worldwide by Year's End

    It's a frequently quoted truism that despite a huge market for consumer electronics and an insatiable appetite for the Internet, the U.S. has lagged behind other countries in adopting super-fast data connections. However, a recent blogpost from Pyramid Research suggests that could be changing. According to their study, by the end of 2011 the bulk of  worldwide LTE connections will be handled by U.S. companies accounting for 47% of worldwide LTE traffic. Additionally, 71% of LTE handset sales will be in the U.S.. Most of these LTE connections will be handled by MetroPCS, AT&T, and Verizon. The last of these is particularly significant, since Verizon launched its LTE network in late 2010 and now provides the most coverage across the country with the standard -- some 60% of the nation. Verizon expects to have 185 million LTE users by year's end. AT&T, though only recently entering the LTE fray, expects to add 70 million users of their own users to the standard by the end of 2011.

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  8. Pandora Mobile App Sends Personal Info to Advertisers

    An investigation of the Pandora mobile app by Veracode has revealed that the popular free music streaming app is sending reams of personal information to advertisers without the user's knowledge or consent. The Wall Street Journal, which initially investigated several free mobile apps and discovered similar information-broadcasting mechanisms, is also reporting that a federal investigation has been launched into the makers of these apps and that Pandora has been subpoenaed. Veracode has published their findings, indicating five different libraries of advertisers' code in the Pandora app from AdMarvel, AdMob, comScore, Google.Ads, and Medialets. Veracode confirmed that the app was, indeed, sending information including gender, unique phone identifiers, IP address, connection status, bearing, altitude, and geographic location, among other information.

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  9. Avoiding Traffic Snarls With Google Maps Navigation

    If you're already using the Google Maps Navigation app on your Android device, you'll have a sweet surprise coming to you: The app can now avoid bad traffic. Interestingly, this will not rely solely on up-to-the-minute data. From the Google Mobile blog:
    Starting today, our routing algorithms will also apply our knowledge of current and historical traffic to select the fastest route from those alternates. That means that Navigation will automatically guide you along the best route given the current traffic conditions.
    The feature is, however, limited to areas in Europe and North America where real-time traffic conditions are available. Traffic avoidance is being introduced as an automatic feature -- meaning that the app will be taking traffic data into account as soon as you fire it up. This might be jarring for some users, especially those who only use navigation for a portion of their trip (I am completely guilty of ignoring my GPS as it re-calculates while I drive to the edge of my geographical knowledge). Google does point out, though, that using the app may make driving better for everyone by keeping users out of sprawling traffic jams. This kind of traffic avoidance technology has been available on dedicated GPS devices for some time, though almost always as a paid feature. Bringing this capability to the masses will certainly make companies like Garmin nervous, and hopefully get people to their destinations faster. (Google via Engadget)

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