I had started this yesterday and then realized it wasn't Wednesday and then yeah. I've been off all day yesterday (bad mood) and all day today (haven't slept since Monday night). My brain is just not with it this week.
So let's just get right to it so I can veg out figuratively at my desk.
Dreams of a Google MVNO are moving forward and I want it now!
So Android Police did a really good write-up the other day regarding Google's MVNO, which sounds freaking amazing based on said article.
However, that's way more of a thorough and techie focused breakdown than the average person could bear reading about. Potentially even not so much understand.
For those wanting a simpler to understand breakdown of things, head over to XDA for their write-up or read on for my simpler version of it.
So the short version of the breakdown of the app that was found inside a leaked version of upcoming Nexus 6 firmware has revealed three things (that are potentially subject to minor changes).
First off, the code name for Google's MVNO will be Google Nova. I've mentioned as much previously when writing about this. On top of that, Tycho will be the name of the account management app installed or installable on devices that'll be used on said network. The likely name of the service plan under said MVNO is Project Fi.
Again, those names are all subject to potentially change. Just putting that out there.
Where Google is really breaking the mold, like usual of course, is in how they will handle customers and allow them to do things with their account. Not surprisingly, it'll all mostly be handled with an app.
Namely, users will be able to start the activation process, request a new number or port/transfer their current number (including their Google Voice number if they have one and are so inclined to port it), and close/temporarily suspend/resume services on their account and their service.
Naturally you'll be able to also view and pay your bills, check your usage, switch plans, and a great many other as yet unrevealed things. But you get the idea.
Again, all of this will be done with an app on your phone. No more bullshit calls to a carrier or in-store visits. We all know what both of those are like. Even now I eventually pretend to strangle myself while on the phone with mostly unhelpful customer representatives. The ones who are helpful though rock. (You all rock if you by chance see this.)
But tell us about the plans and how much they cost, amirite?
Well, price points at present are unknown but what is known is how amazing the plans will be, allowing you to mix and match based on your needs.
Data will be offered in bulks of 1 GB, which you'll be able to share across devices.
Domestic calls and regular text messages (SMS) will be free and unlimited.
MMS messages will have a flat rate per essage.
International minutes will not be free as previously rumored. They will, however, be cheaply priced for bulk purchases or on an individual as needed basis at a low rate.
The plan's base-cost will depend on the number of lines under said plan.
Data only devices (tablets) are supported.
On top of all that there is going to be an "Extras" part of the plan, likely allowing for any potential services fees (and which will probably allow you to pay for apps and media bought through the Play Store under your plan).
It also needs repeating that this MVNO is unlike any carrier currently out there in that your device will be able to switch between WiFi and cellular connectivity (using T-Mobile and Sprint's network) depending on which gives you the best signal wherever you are at any moment. At present only one device on the market allows for this potential signal hopping and that is the Nexus 6.
Don't have a Nexus 6? That's okay! Device purchases is definitely going to be a thing, which means you'll likely be able to buy a Nexus 6 for use with the service. And by "buy" I don't mean spend $650+ to get the device. No, instead they'll go the mostly known carrier route method of paying for a device. With a notable catch. There will be zero-interest financing with an at present unknown down payment. So basically what those of us in the U.S. are used to, those of us who don't buy off contract devices that is. Oh and without the sneaky "it's only $200! [whispers quietly when you're not paying attention] but you'll basically pay off the device in full and then some over the course of your plan because we've tacked on the monthly cost of the device anyway to your plan since you won't notice and we'll keep charging you that amount even after you've paid it off because again you won't notice".
But this is Google and surely there's some kind of catch to all of this I'm sure some of you are thinking.
There is. Ads. Don't get me wrong though, I don't mean you'll see ads on your device 24/7/365. I mean the following, taken verbatim from the teardown of the app.
Project Fi usage data may include your Customer Proprietary Network Information, of "CPNI". To restrict the use of your CPNI in connection with related information services provided by Google, you can turn off the setting to share Project Fi usage data. This won't affect your use of Project Fi services but may affect Google's ability to offer products and services tailored to your needs. Project Fi collects and uses your CPNI according to the Terms of Service.
Read that and then read it again. They're making it known to you what they will do, but they're also allowing you to opt out of it. Which is a seriously classy move.
Everyone sells your data, with your identifying info removed from it of course, but not many let you opt out of them gathering it in the first place. Definitely not the carriers.
I mean there's only one way to put just how insane a move that is from the new carrier on the block.
Beyond that there is still a lot we don't know. We don't know the launch date. We don't know what, if any, other devices beyond the Nexus 6 will usable with the service, nor which if any others will be available through financing (only the Nexus 6 is listed). We also, like I already said above, don't know how much the plans will cost or the individual items on each one.
Regardless, I am excited about this!
I'm gonna say "don't quote me on this" but more than likely we'll find out everything by the end of next month when IO takes place. On a related note, I already requested both days off. I might not be able to attend in person, but I am going to dedicate both days to watching IO streamed live on YouTube and then reading and reading again about everything that gets discussed and revealed and then sharing it with you all that day or the day after. (Last year and the year before I think I did my write-ups as they happened but didn't hit publish on the post til closer to 5, that way I could get in as much info as I could before leaving work for the day.)
Dead Zebra "For Science" Android collectible figures incoming on Monday!
Come Monday there will be a lot of people hitting up the Dead Zebra site yet again to pick up some of their renown figures.
So this is just my way of informing you that the new series is dropping and I'll do so again come Monday.
The figures will go on sale at 10 AM CST, so prepare your fingers for some serious F5 pressing. Don't forget that these items tend to sell out rather quickly and are made in incredibly limited batch runs and when they're gone they're gone. Also, we tend to crash the site every time these kinds of things drop. (Yeah, I'm one of the people who is involved in that. My bad, everyone! But I can't help myself, there's always a figure or two I need and must have!)
I for one will be picking up the Nikola Tesla figure.
So again, come Monday visit this link here at 10 AM CST to get your order in.
In "when will they stop with the stupidity" related news...
Cyanogen OS (not CyanogenMod) will soon come bundled with Microsoft apps and services. I am not even remotely joking about that. This is in keeping with Kirk McMaster's statements of "breaking away from Google".
Bing, Skype, OneDrive, OneNote, Outlook, and Office will be coming to the Cyanogen fold.
To quote Ruxin, "Forever unclean!"
I mean seriously, what the heck is going on with Cyanogen Inc.? I've written about them before and how they've basically taken to acting like assholes at each and every possible opportunity. So I guess it really should be no surprise to hear they want to make Cyanogen Google-free, but it's still a damn shock to see them actually do it. I honestly thought it was all just hyperbole from Kirk. (Also, is it just me or is Kirk a seriously douchey sounding first name? I hear Kirk and I automatically associate it with someone who would call everyone around them "bro".)
At this point, I'm sure the people who maintain CyanogenMod for various devices are on the point of, assuming they already aren't, distancing themselves as much as possible from the monstrosity that is Cyanogen OS and Cyanogen Inc., like they just have to. Who would want to be associated with that nonsense?
And yes, folks. That is indeed John DiMaggio, the voice of Bender and so many other lovable characters, in one scene in one episode of The League (which might be the most hilarious sports sorta related show on TV you aren't watching).
There's a new game out from Amazon and we can't have it
Before you get ahead of yourselves just know that the game is $6.99 and only available for Kindle and iOS devices. Those who would like to know more can visit Amazon's page for the game.
Fine then, Amazon! I didn't want to play your stupid game anyway! So ha! [sticks out tongue in Amazon's direction]
Speaking of Amazon though, they've got quite a few paid apps free at the moment ($105's worth to be exact). Of course they're updated later, if at all that is, than their Play Store equivalents. Plus you have to have the Amazon app installed on your device to be able to then install them.
On a soccer aka actual football related note
Forza Soccer has just received a Material Design update.
I might be a Texas born and raised U.S. citizen, but American football is boring as hell in my book. And the Cowboys, contrary to what most Texans believe, fucking suck! (Come at me, bro!) As do the Longhorns! (Again...)
I watch actual sports. Like proper football (or "futbol" if you prefer) and hockey.
Also, it's better to use an app like this than something that's FIFA endorsed for oh so many reasons. (Not the least reason of which was the official FIFA World Cup app worked for all of a day before going right to hell every time you tried launching it and this includes on high end devices.) But I think I'll let John Oliver explain why that is to those of you who don't know. [glares at all the Americans who don't watch soccer and don't get what I'm talking about, especially his one close friend who said "soccer isn't a real sport" yet considers football to be one, because she's clearly an idiot]
And yes, if you only get interested in soccer in the U.S. when the U.S. plays in the World Cup you are indeed a bad person and not actually a fan of the sport.
Also, if you watch that video or just want to watch only some of it try tuning in around the 7:12 mark. There's a hilarious Dr. Strangelove moment/reference in it.
Eso es tedo
Translation: That is all.
For today at least, who knows what tomorrow brings. And apologies for the delayed post, I meant to do it yesterday but laziness got the better of me and I was like "meh, I'll do it tomorrow".
Questions, comments, etc. you know what to do with them.