Google, Now With CEO Sundar Pichai, Is Owned By Alphabet, Its New Parent

alphabetHere’s how it works: Google’s founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin have started “a collection of companies”. They have dubbed that collection “Alphabet”, and within it, the letter “G” stands for Google.

In other words, there’s a company bigger than Google, as of today.

Management positions include the appointment of a new Google CEO — none other than Sundar Pichai. Page will take the CEO spot of Alphabet, while Brin becomes its President.

Alphabet’s birth comes as a result from the creation and acquisition of companies that don’t truly make sense under the generic moniker of Google, including health-focused efforts Calico and the Life Sciences.

“This newer Google is a bit slimmed down, with the companies that are pretty far afield of our main internet products contained in Alphabet instead,” Page writes.

The new operating structure of Google means that each letter or company will receive a CEO of its own, with compensation determined by none other than Brin and Page.

Time to see where the Alphabet goes — which is revealed, after the break.

Via: Alphabet, Official Google Blog

Google Publishes Hangouts 4.0: Redesign, Bug Fixes And Speed

Screen Shot 2015-08-10 at 7.32.54 AMIf there was one thing true about the previous Google Hangouts app, it’s that it was chock full of features, but not on speed even on the fastest of Android flagship phones. Today that changes with Hangouts 4.0, which is currently being rolled out from the Play Store (or is available as a signed .apk from the source link). Google is touting less battery usage from the app as well.

In it, users will find a complete redesign of the app catered towards readability and cleanliness, as well as speed improvements and bug fixes. Custom status messages, outbound caller ID, and replying to groups MMS are all new features that come as a part of v4.0 as well.

Oh, and there’s Android Wear support.

Via: Google, APK Mirror

Intel Brings Skylake To Gamers First, Thus New Core i5 And i7 Chips

SKL-i7-boxIt’s high-time for new Intel chips on the enthusiast end, and the big I delivered with new, quad-core Core i5 and Core i7 processors. More specifically, as the Core i7-6700K and i5-6600K.

The new 14-nanometer chips are unlocked for maximum overclocking (all “K”-series are), but if that’s not your vibe, then they operate at a pretty high clock speed to begin with: 4.0GHz for the Core i7-6700K and 3.5GHz for the i5-6600K. MSRP is pegged at $350 for the i7-6700K and $243 for the i5-6600K.

Now, here come the shortcomings: the new i7 is only 10% faster than the previous Haswell version, or practically none over current Haswell-E variants. However, if you’re all about the cutting edge (like many PC gamers, including myself), then the inclusion of DDR4 memory support (for the first time on desktops) and up to 4GHz overclocking per core, then the Skylake generation should be just enough to get you to jump ship.

Via: Intel

Acer XB WQHD G-Sync Monitor Review: All Hail 144hz

20150804_140432Gaming monitors require three things: excellent resolution, a fast refresh rate and popping colors. The 27-inch Acer XB at WQHD resolution (2,560 x 1440) on an IPS panel has all of those things, plus one: Nvidia’s G-Sync technology.

That dear reader, is how Acer has built one of the finest gaming monitors available in 2015. Now, it’s time to move on stating how so.

Master & Dynamic MH30 Review: For Those Who Love On-Ears, Sans Myself


Having reviewed a “mobile thinking cap”, I thought it was high-time to review something more portable. When it comes to headphones, on-ears represent the closest balance between earphones due to portability and the sound quality usually attributed to over-ears. But, they’ve never really been to my taste. If it’s not aesthetic shortcomings, it’s the lack of encapsulating sound, and if it’s not that, it’s a litany of uncomfortable designs that press on the ear lobe rather than rest against it.

Here, the MH30 by Manhattan-based audio company Master & Dynamic comes close to fixing most (if no all) of those problems.

Victorinox I.N.O.X. Watch Review: It Might Last Longer Than I Will

20150801_160455As clever wordplay on the last four letters of the Victorinox brand name — legendary Swiss manufacturer of Swiss army knives and luggages —  the I.N.O.X. watch stands for a rather lengthy name: Impact Neutralizing Object for the X-tremes.

It’s a timepiece that contains a quartz movement and is encased inside of a 43mm stainless steel case of extreme durability. Of course, the glass has to be up to snuff as well, so a scratch-resistant, triple-coated anti-reflective sapphire crystal is affixed as the window. That isn’t the only extreme thing about this timepiece, either.

A Look At: The Helly Hansen Kordel Leather Shoe


Price as Reviewed: $100 at Helly Hansen 

It’s comfortable, stylish, and well, it’s a sneaker — so that counts for quite a bit. Thanks to the myriad of navy tones and the white and red flourishes, the Kordel leather shoe is somewhat playful without looking juvenile; I can wear it with a dress shirt and jeans, then attend a media event with my dignity and style intact. It fits comfortably, with enough height and cushioning to feel as if you”re wearing a usually thick pair of socks.

Hands On With The Moto X Pure Edition

20150728_094544In the grand scheme of the things, it’s the Moto X Style that stands as today’s important announcement from Motorola. It could be argued that their best-selling phone to date, the Moto G, is also important, but the enthusiast (and I) market might say otherwise. Here, the metallic accents and grippy, soft grip of the Moto X Style actually shine, while also keeping a large device with a 5.7-inch screen in a 5.5″ body, wieldable.