Free Microsoft Office apps are now officially available on Android tablets

The beta versions of the Android apps have already been available as part of a three-month "preview" program to some Microsoft users for testing, but the official suite of Office apps launched in the Google Play store on Thursday. Some of the premium and business features, though, are only available for Office 365 subscribers.

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Finally! A Video Game About Building Ikea Furniture!

Is building Ikea furniture your idea of a good time? Well, hold onto your Napoleon hat, because there's now a game for Mac and Windows that will allow you and up to three other players to simulate the maddening experience of constructing flat-pack furniture in a virtual living room, no Bjursta required.

Facebook Just Had Another Record Quarter, and It Has Apple to Thank | WIRED

Facebook deserves a lot of credit for figuring out new ways to make smartphones a true home for its ad products. But over the past three months especially, the company may be benefitting from a major assist. Apple posted record profits this week largely thanks to sales of its new iPhones with bigger screens. On those screens, Facebook’s ads look better than ever.

Apple and Samsung Are Now in A Dead Heat for Smartphone Dominance

That means Samsung’s smartphone sales over the holidays fell somewhere between 71 million and 75 million — putting it roughly on par with Apple, which sold a record 74.5 million iPhones over the same period.

'Super Smash Bros.' 8-player mode just got a whole lot better

Super Smash Bros. for Wii U raised the stakes for local multiplayer with its 8-Player Smash mode, but gamers were limited to just a few stages for the frantic action. That's changing today as Nintendo is pushing out an update that adds 15 more stages to the mode, more than doubling the choice for players. Mario Circuit, Lylat Cruise, Pyrosphere, Luigi's Mansion and many others now support 5-8 characters, and have seen small tweaks to make them suitable for the additional demands. Perhaps the biggest tweak can be seen in Mario Circuit, which no longer has karts racing around.

Four things we learned from Samsung's Q4 earnings call - CNET

Qualcomm's report likely means the Galaxy S6 won't use an 810 processor, but it's not yet clear whether Qualcomm will end up with a second-place prize by getting its modem chip in the phone instead. Samsung executives wouldn't confirm anything during the earnings call, but they did raise suspicions that Samsung's internal modem chips may be used in the Galaxy S6. They noted Samsung's processors are being qualified by carriers, which means the chips will be certified to work on the wireless networks.

Apple and Samsung Are Now in A Dead Heat for Smartphone Dominance

That means Samsung’s smartphone sales over the holidays fell somewhere between 71 million and 75 million — putting it roughly on par with Apple, which sold a record 74.5 million iPhones over the same period.

Watch people lose their minds when subjected to the Tesla P85D's 'insane' mode

When Elon Musk first showed off the Model S P85D, Tesla's high-end all-wheel-drive electric car, he said that his company wanted to reach the kind of acceleration achieved by the world's greatest supercars.  With the help of a dash camera , some unsuspecting victims, and the car's ability to accelerate from 0 to 60 MPH in 3.2 seconds, a P85D owner made a super sweary compilation video to show that Tesla was certainly successful in making its newest model shockingly speedy.

Artificial intelligence strong concern Bill Gates

He joins Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking in suggesting that the march of AI could be an existential threat to humans. The former Microsoft boss gave his opinion during his latest Ask Me Anything (AMA) interview on the Reddit networking site.

Connected canine outfit Whistle buys competitor Tagg, raises $15M

Combined, Whistle and Tagg will have 100,000 connected dog collars in the market, Jacobs said, but they both target different applications. Tagg primarily has been a GPS and cellular tracking collar that will keep tabs on pets for a monthly subscription fee. Whistle meanwhile created a kind of Fitbit (see disclosure) for pooches, using accelerometers to monitor daily exercise and rest and charting those metrics on its smartphone apps.

Create GIFs with Imgur's new Web tool - CNET

The Imgur Video to GIF conversion page makes creating a high-quality GIF really easy. Grab a link for your favorite video, paste it into the text field and then drag the start and finish markers to appropriate spots in your video. GIFs can only be 15 seconds in length, but that should be plenty of time to make something interesting.

Amazon’s Mixed Q4 2014 With $29.33B Revenue, And $0.45 EPS

Amazon just released its fiscal Q4 2014 earnings, reporting $29.33 billion in revenue, $214 million in net profit representing $0.45 per share. According to CNBC/Thomson Reuters , analysts expected the company to report earnings of $0.17 per share on $29.67 billion in revenue. While the company largely beat the expectations on earnings, it fell a bit short on revenue.

Google Play Downloads Are Growing Faster, but Apple Is Still Winning the Money Race

Also interesting, though perhaps not surprising, is that just three countries — Japan, South Korea and the United States — generated more app revenue than the rest of the world combined in 2014. App Annie said the fastest-growing group of nations was the so-called BRIC segment: Brazil, Russia, India and China, which more than doubled its app revenue. It’s worth noting, however, that its data only concerns the iOS App Store and Google Play, and does not include all the other Android stores that have proliferated in places like China.

Millionaires in China love gifting Apple products

Millionaires in China overwhelmingly look to Apple when they want to give someone a nice gift, according to  a new survey from Hurun Report . In a poll of 376 millionaires in Mainland China — people with a wealth above US$1.6 million — around one in five said that Apple was the best brand for a gift for both men and women, taking the top spot away from last year's number one, Hermès. The results find that Apple is followed by much more traditional luxury brands, including Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Chanel, and Dior. Samsung has a presence on the list, too, but it's in 10th for men and 9th for women.

D-Wave Systems Raises Another $29M To Accelerate Development On Its Quantum Hardware

If it hopes to sell any more processors, D-Wave Systems also needs clients like Google and NASA to build software that takes advantage of quantum annealing. That’s uncharted territory for most software engineers, so D-Wave has to work with its customers to demonstrate that there is in fact an advantage to buying quantum hardware.

50,000 Super Bowl simulations, one clear winner - CNET

A sophisticated prediction software ran tens of thousands of scenarios and picked one team to win 60 percent of the time. Is it the team you're rooting for?

How net neutrality rules can fix Verizon’s supercookie problem

This is ignorant. The Federal Trade Commission (not the FCC), which is the lead agency on privacy issues in the US, ALREADY has all the authority needed to address the supercookie problem, should it harm consumers. The FTC has brought over 150 privacy cases, many with online components, and just today got $40 million back from TracPhone for throttling consumers’ broadband speeds. Harold Feld is so enamored with reclassification under Title II that he apparently doesn’t care that doing so will actually make it harder for the FTC to protect consumer privacy online. Instead he wants to turn privacy protection over to a agency that has an incredibly weak track record of enforcement.

The Not-So-Crazy Plan to Build an Ice-Skating Highway Through Edmonton | WIRED

He’s suggested building something he calls the Freezeway, a 6.8-mile skating lane through Edmonton, Alberta, for residents and tourists who want to commute on ice. You may laugh, but Matt Gibbs has given this a lot of thought—he first proposed the idea two years ago in his masters thesis in landscape architecture at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.

Why I Think Students Should Cheat | WIRED

The benefits of cheating are obvious – improved grades in an environment where failure is not an opportunity for learning, but rather a badge of shame. When students do poorly on a test, there is no reason for students to review their responses because they will likely never be tested on the same thing ever again. The test itself is largely arbitrary and often not meaningful. Organizations such as FairTest are devoted to sharing research that exposes the problems of bad testing practices.

Now You Can Order Postmates From Your Browser

Today, instant-delivery startup  Postmates brought its app from mobile to the web. The move helps those on Windows Phone, BlackBerry, iOS and Android who are too lazy to pick up their phones to order. (Several TechCrunchers in the office have done this multiple times. I may or may not be one of them.)

This is the year we find out whether new media can scale or not

As I tried to point out in a post late last year after the BuzzFeed and Vice financings were announced, there is still a rather large unanswered question about this influx of venture-capital funding into new media: Can these ventures scale to a point where they can justify all that investment? Both Vox and Business Insider make a point of talking about their content-management systems (which Vox calls Chorus and BI calls Viking) but having a CMS doesn’t make you a tech company.

Watch Dragon's Dogma Online gameplay in the debut trailer

Going by its first trailer, Dragon's Dogma Online plays much like its name indicates. The newly unveiled RPG allows parties of up to four players to take on a variety of monsters, small and large - sometimes very large. Like in the original Dragon's Dogma , players can cling to bigger beasties and get their Wander on, as you can see in the video below the break. Along with the video, new screenshots some of the "Online" side including towns that players can congregate in and the chat windows pictured above. Finally, the trailer confirms initial reports that Dragon's Dogma Online is a free-to-play game for PS4, PS3, and Windows PC, and that it's coming to Japan this year. According to Capcom, a Western release isn't in the company's plans. Dragon's Dogma Online [Image: Capcom]

Heroin dealer testifies about Silk Road sales

Heroin dealer testifies about Silk Road sales The dark side of Ross William Ulbricht's alleged role as the Silk Road mastermind entered his trial via a heroin dealer who testified he used the drug-trafficking site to sell the drug to scores of other "dopesick" addicts across the country. Check out this story on

It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia: "Psycho Pete Returns" Review - IGN

So at times in "Psycho Pete Returns," which featured Charlie and Mac getting over-excited about a high school friend (the famed Psycho Pete who we only heard about back in "The High School Reunion Part 2: The Gang's Revenge") coming for a visit, The Gang's sentiments toward the disabled weren't meant to isolate them as outliers and misfits, but rather have them mirror, in an extreme way, the overall apathy shared by society. Which isn't what The Gang does best.

Obama must finally end NSA phone record collection, says privacy board

White House could take action ‘at any time’, says Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board chair as key Patriot Act measure is poised to expire

Facebook Now Has Over 3B Video Views Per Day

Facebook said that in the last year, the number of video posts per person on Facebook increased 75% globally and 94% in the U.S. (My guess is that it will try to push more of this kind of “native” video in the future — that is, video hosted on Facebook rather than on third-party sites, either by offering more control and a better experience or better exposure in Facebook’s ever-evolving algorithm for what gets seen the most. Hosting the videos, of course, means that Facebook can monetise them better.)

Here’s why Facebook got away with a 335 percent hike in ad prices

The company says its ads have become more efficient at targeting and tracking people. Facebook is measuring the return on investment that each advertiser receives for every dollar spent. “When I sit down with clients this year compared to last year … we’re able to A/B test Facebook ads versus no Facebook ads and what the effect is on their sales,” Sandberg said on the call.

CenturyLink's much-hyped Twin Cities 1-gig broadband rollout is slow in coming

CenturyLink in August made much of its new 1-gigabit-per-second broadband service, which it said would roll out in the Twin Cities and other cities. But nearly six months later, only small pockets of the Twin Cities have the service, and most CenturyLink customers have much-slower speeds. (CenturyLink)

FTC shuts down “revenge porn” operation, but imposes no fine

In one of the most despicable scams on the internet, Colorado resident Craig Brittain ran a website that posted nude photographs of hundreds of women alongside their Facebook profiles and other personal information, then blackmailed the victims to pay bogus lawyer sites, controlled by Brittain, in the hope of expunging the photos.

With $1.75M In Funding, MaestroIQ Promises Smart Recommendations For Mobile Marketers

When you talk to ad tech and analytics companies, one thing you hear over and over again is the promise to deliver recommendations that marketers can act on, rather than overwhelming them with data and graphs.

Funding Daily: Today’s tech funding news, in one place

D-Wave Systems , a company building what it calls quantum computers, is announcing that it has taken on around $23.1 million, or $29 million in Canadian dollars, in additional funding. Burnaby, British Columbia-based D-Wave claims its hardware is capable of quantum computing. In contrast to classical computers, which deal in bits, each of which carries a value of either zero or one, quantum systems work with quantum bits, or qubits, each of which can be 0 or 1 or both. The superposition of these qubits can provide for great numbers of computations to be performed simultaneously, making a quantum computer highly desirable for certain types of processes.

Lego Jurassic World, Lego Marvel's Avengers announced

WARNER BROS. INTERACTIVE ENTERTAINMENT, TT GAMES, AND THE LEGO GROUP ANNOUNCE AN ACTION-PACKED SLATE OF LEGO® VIDEOGAMES FOR 2015 New Brick Smashing Adventures Are Coming to Console, Handheld and Mobile Platforms LEGO Jurassic World and LEGO Marvel's Avengers Lead the Line-up For more information and assets click here » Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, TT Games, and The LEGO Group, today announced their 2015 slate of LEGO ® videogames including LEGO Jurassic World™, LEGO Marvel's Avengers, plus new handheld and mobile titles. "The LEGO videogame franchise remains a cornerstone of our business, consistently delivering fun, engaging gameplay and remarkable humour both kids and adults love," said David Haddad, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. "We look forward to expanding the successful series with this very exciting line-up of new LEGO experiences for players of all ages to enjoy on console, handheld and mobile gaming devices." "This year will be the biggest yet for LEGO videogames with these incredible titles and several firsts for the series," said Tom Stone, Managing Director, TT Games.

Google Misses On EPS Of $6.88, Revenue Of $14.5B For Q4 2014

Google reported its third-quarter earnings after close of market today, offering up gross revenue of $18.10 billion, revenue net of traffic acquisition costs (ex-TAC) of $14.5 billion, and non-GAAP earnings per share (EPS) of $6.88, with GAAP EPS of $6.91.

Forget Virtual Reality. Are You Ready for Virtual Sushi? | WIRED

Texture is a critical culinary consideration and An’s team is working to recreate the mouthfeel of sushi, steak, and apple pie using natural, low-calorie ingredients. “Some of our ingredients were inspired by vegan and allergy-free cooking since vegan and food allergy communities have already done a lot of experiments trying to mimic various types of foods that they are not able to eat,” says An. “For example, we are experimenting with nutritious yeast and shiitake mushroom powder to recreate dry-aged and umami flavors in our faux steak.”

The Future of Wearables Isn't a Connected Watch | WIRED

And yet all of these notes from a sillier future were real—at least real enough to compete for a half-million-dollar prize from one of computing’s Godfather companies. Intel is covering itself in wearables. It bought Basis, maker of a multisensor watch that monitors movement, heart rate, and skin temperature to track your activity and sleep; it rolled out a line of technologized jewelry; and it is rumored that the next-generation Google Glass will have Intel inside. The reason for this push? Intel thinks wearables will be more ubiquitous than computers or phones. And it’s right. You won’t have just one wearable—you’ll have dozens. The biggest mistake everyone makes is assuming we’re going to wear the same one all the time.

Arrow: "Midnight City" Review - IGN

The main benefit of having Ollie mostly out of the picture is that it allows the supporting cast to shine that much more. Felicity’s mini-arc was satisfying, as she moved past Ollie’s apparent death enough to realize that she can’t abandon her work. Roy was also given more to do as he stalked Malcolm and played the protective ex-boyfriend. Thea, meanwhile, showed her assertive side and convinced Malcolm to stay in Starling and prepare for Ra’s al Ghul’s arrival. I half expected one of them to shot with an arrow while they were talking on the balcony. But at least we know the League is watching them, thanks to the reveal that the seemingly pointless DJ is actually a ninja spy. It’s becoming clear now that Ra’s and his forces are the big end game of this season. Hopefully that pays off as handsomely as the Deathstroke storyline did last year.

We Are Yoga

Yes, the egocentric Western commodification of yoga is about cultural appropriation and white privilege. It's also about being cast adrfit from the meaningful rituals and practices of our pre-Abrahamic monotheist European ancestors and we are trying to fill that void in the most self-serving and convenient way possible-taking from Others who still have theirs. Here's an excerpt from an article by a formerly well-known yoga teacher: "The process of starting to trace back my family’s origins has lead to me see the way that many European folks have lost touch with exactly what many of us are seeking in our yoga practices. We have become so spiritually hungry and lost we are willing to steal. We feel comfortable doing this because whiteness breeds entitlement – the feeling that it is our right to practice and change a practice that isn’t ours in the first place..."

Alibaba Breathes New Life Into Game-Console Maker Ouya

Ouya, the game-console maker that has struggled to gain traction since its record-breaking Kickstarter campaign, has received a new injection of capital from a powerful strategic partner.

Apple hits Samsung at home, where it hurts

Samsung will take little comfort from Apple’s performance next door. In China, Apple recently grabbed the lead in the smartphone market for the first time, according to Canalys, due to the popularity of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. In Japan, it has been dominant since 2012, according to MM Research Institute, which puts Apple’s share at 57 percent during the April to September period of 2014, more than Sharp and Sony combined.

Samsung Electronics fourth-quarter profit meets guidance; outlook cautious

The semiconductor division was a bright spot as Samsung posted fourth-quarter operating profit of 5.3 trillion won ($4.88 billion), in line with the 5.2 trillion won profit the firm guided for earlier this month.

21 Big Nintendo Games of 2015 - IGN Video

Here's 21 reasons 2015 will be a big year for Nintendo.

Amazon shares rally 14% after profit returns

Amazon shares rally 12% after profit returns Amazon returned to a modest profit in the fourth quarter, giving a boost to its shares late Thursday. Check out this story on

5 fun multiplayer games for your Google Chromecast - CNET

You can do more with Google's HDMI dongle than just stream audio and video. Here are a few games that play nice with this low-cost media device.

iTunes Connect Issue Logging Developers Into Other Accounts [Now Offline]

An issue with Apple’s iTunes Connect service , which lets developers upload new versions of their apps to the App Store and track sales and income, is causing some developers to log into the wrong accounts this morning.

Office for Android now widely available, with new Outlook apps in tow

The launch is a result of Microsoft’s acquisition of Acompli at the end of last year, which was sign that the company had finally decided to take Outlook on smartphones and tablets seriously. The apps released on Thursday will replace OWA for iPhones, iPads and Android as well as Android app.

4G spectrum auction ends, raising a record $45B

It took a grueling two and half months , but the Federal Communications Commission auction of new 4G airwaves is finally over. The provisional winning bids totaled $44.9 billion for 65 MHz of airwaves, the most the FCC has ever raised at an auction, but we won’t know that actual winners for a few days when the commission releases the official results.

Yahoo search could finally replace Google in Safari

Yahoo has been in talks with Apple about search for years , but the stars could align in 2015 for two reasons: Google’s search contract with Apple is reportedly fulfilled this year, and Yahoo is in the midst of renegotiating its 10-year search partnership with Microsoft. This year would be the first time since 2010 that Apple would be able to choose another default search partner over Google.

Roll on: Seattle pot shop preps 12,000 joints for Super Bowl

The packs are only available for medical-marijuana patients, according to KING5's report — but we have a feeling they'll be passed around in many circles, among the pain-afflicted and healthy alike. The shop says it hopes to make the 12th Pack officially available to recreational smokers by the start of next football season, and that 12th Packs should be available in 26 stores across Washington by game day.

Mythbusters meet their Doom on January 31

After more than a decade of debunking myths in reality, the Mythbusters are taking aim at the virtual world, specifically id Software's seminal first-person shooter D oom . The January 31 episode of the hit Discovery Channel series will feature Jamie and Adam examining the game alongside id Software creative director Tim Willits. While it's not feasible to properly test the game's premise by dropping the hosts into a Martian portal to hell, the show still plans to determine whether or not a person could simultaneously tote all the weapons, ammo, armor and gas-powered lawn care implements seen in the game. Additionally, with Willits' assistance and the significant special effects experience of the Mythbusters team, the show will feature a real-world replica of a level from the hit shooter. You can find more details on Mythbusters at the series' website , and you can find this upcoming Doom -themed episode by tuning into the Discovery Channel on January 31 at 9PM (8PM for those in the Central Time Zone). [Image: Bethesda]

Microsoft finally has an Outlook app that doesn't suck

The apps also maintain support for non-Microsoft email accounts, so Gmail and Yahoo users can continue to use the Outlook app — as of Thursday Acompli's iOS and Android apps will redirect to Outlook.

51 Microsoft Office comes to Android tablets starting today - CNET
52 Sky Plans to Launch a Mobile Voice and Data Service in the UK
53 Apple’s iPhone 6 Success Is Mostly Android’s Loss, Giving iPhone Plenty Of Room To Grow
54 American Horror Story: Freak Show Season Review - IGN
55 Delhi Uber passenger who alleges driver rape sues in U.S. court
56 Grab a pint with free Dragon Age: Inquisition tavern songs
57 Internal email: We need to change our official photos immediately
58 The Verge on Twitter
59 Spotify may be raising another $500 million
60 Tesla will make the absurdly fast P85D even faster with a software update
61 Apple now neck-and-neck with Samsung after monster quarter
62 Swipe Raises $6.5M To Combine Tinder And Photo Sharing Clichés Into Something Cool
63 Nickelodeon follows in HBO’s footsteps, preps standalone streaming service
64 Mashable, Business Insider Get New Funding
65 Better Call Saul's creators talk about the show in this new preview
66 This Building's Pixelated Facade Regulates Its Temperature | WIRED
67 Swiftype is hiring!
68 The 100: "Survival of the Fittest" Review - IGN
69 LibreOffice 4.4, the most beautiful LibreOffice ever
70 Amazon sales rise in holiday quarter, shares jump
71 What Makes A Good Video Game Sequel? - Blog by StandardGamer - IGN
72 The FCC just closed its biggest wireless spectrum auction in history
73 Qantas Will Offer Passengers Virtual Reality In-Flight
74 Watch the Snow Pile Up in Boston in This Awesome Two-Minute Video
75 Steam users have earned more than $50 million selling in-game hats and maps
76 Can super cute puppies save these #brands?
77 Chatterbox: Friday
78 Sony said to be slashing 1,000 more jobs in mobile division - CNET
79 Google is Using Synthetic Skin For Cancer Reasearch
80 Google Admits Glass Didn't "Have The Impact We Hoped For"
81 Chinese retiree builds robotic horse - CNET
82 To Adjust This Standing Desk's Height, Just Hold Out Your Hand | WIRED
83 An Argument for Bringing Back Mini-CDs and 8-Track Tapes | WIRED
84 Facebook Launches Automated "Place Tips"
85 Faxpapers: A Lost 1930s Technology That Delivered Newspapers via Radio
86 Fighters - Mortal Kombat X Wiki Guide - IGN
87 Your Smartphone Battery Sucks. This MIT Startup Could Change That
88 Samsung's profits continue to slip
89 Apple updates iTunes with OS X Notification Center widget
90 I Love You, Grim Fandango, Even Though You're Broken | WIRED
91 Huddle Co-Founder Alastair Mitchell Steps Down As CEO, Morten Brogger Steps In
92 Samsung Reports Lowest Annual Profit In Three Years Due To Lagging Smartphone Sales
93 Online booking site KAYAK adds travel information for Cuba
94 Mashable and Business Insider close large new financing rounds
95 Alibaba holiday-quarter revenue disappoints
96 Bill Gates tells Reddit about his mysterious 'personal agent' project at Microsoft
97 The US has laws against genetic discrimination, but people still fear it
98 Gmail Users In The UK Can Now Send And Receive Money
99 Amazon wants you to dump Microsoft's corporate email platform
100 How Sequencing Foods' DNA Could Help Us Prevent Diseases | WIRED