Why you can’t trust ‘lifetime guarantees’ on the Internet of Things

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The looming shutdown of Revolv has some home-automation fans questioning the Internet of Things.
Photo: Andrew Stawarz/Flickr CC

Revolv smart hubs will no longer be supported as of May 15. Even though subscribers have known this was coming since February, there wasn’t a lot of attention until an author’s highly critical piece was published on Medium.

That story has spurred conversations questioning investment in the Internet of Things, or IoT, and prompted Nest to consider compensating users who were early investors in the Revolv hub.

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This app’s sole purpose is to snag you free stuff

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Finagle just exists to get you free stuff.
Finagle just exists to get you free stuff.
Photo: David Repas

Developer David Repas just wants to give you some free stuff with no obligation on your part.

“I’m just one guy trying to create a company around giving stuff away,” he tells Cult of Android. “I’m not into people tracking, annoying users or any of that funny business.”

The app, Finagle, is the simplest we’ve seen. Download it for iOS or Android, add in your email and mobile number and boom, you’re set. Simply look at the latest giveaway (Repas is offering a Pebble Time smartwatch currently) and you’re entered a random drawing to win.

Getting free stuff is never this easy. What’s the catch?

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7 things you need to know about the new Kindle Oasis

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The Kindle Oasis takes e-reading to a new level.
Photo: Amazon

Even though speculation about what to expect ran wild, the formal introduction of the Kindle Oasis last week still left a lot of people surprised.

We’ve got the lowdown on the most important things you need to know about Amazon’s newest eBook reader model, which is due to begin shipping April 27.

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Facebook Messenger now offers group voice chat for up to 50 people

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HEADING
Facebook just made chat more sociable.
Photo: Facebook

Facebook is continuing its mission to try and replace your standard telephone number with its latest update for Facebook Messenger — allowing up to 50 users to jump on a VoIP audio call for a group chat.

The feature, which started rolling out globally yesterday, allows anyone to start a group call by hitting the app’s Phone icon and selecting the group chat members they want included. The members will then receive a Messenger call simultaneously, which they can join at any point the conversation is taking place.

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Low-cost Android makers are hurting thanks to iPhone SE

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The iPhone SE is causing a headache for low-cost Chinese OEMs.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s affordable 4-inch iPhone SE is causing a major headache for Chinese makers of low-cost Android phones.

Supply chain manufacturers in Taiwan and China are reportedly becoming more conservative about building up inventories of smartphone components from companies including Huawei, Xiaomi, Vivo and Oppo as the iPhone SE squeezes the competition.

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Samsung crushes Apple in smartphone shipments as iPhone plummets

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Look out, Apple!
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Samsung couldn’t have wished for a better start for the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge.

Not only are sales shaping up to beat expectations, with an estimated 10 million sales during March alone, but according to the latest data, the new handsets helped Samsung crush Apple in smartphones shipments last quarter.

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