Google releases tool to let devs bring Chrome apps to iOS & Android

Google-Apache Cordova-Chrome

After letting us know last month that it was getting ready to release a toolkit to let developers easily bring their Chrome web apps to iOS and Android, today Google released a developer preview of the tool. In its blog post, Google explains the tool is based on open-source framework Apache Cordova, which allows devs to build native apps for iOS and Android using CSS, HTML, and Javascript. It’s also making a lot of its own core Chrome APIs available to developers through the preview. It essentially means devs will be able to bring their Chrome web apps to the App Store and Google Play, but it will also let them build new cross platform apps in CSS, HTML, and Javascript. Google explained how it works: Read more

New iPad’s A5x chip beats out Tegra 3 in most benchmark tests

When Apple launched the new iPad on Friday, it did so with a new dual-core A5x processor and quad-core graphics inside. During the product’s unveiling, Vice President of Worldwide Marketing Phil Schiller talked about the new chip noting that it provides four times the performance of Tegra 3. Nvidia was quick to question the slide displayed by Apple onstage (pictured right), which did not provide any specific benchmark data. We now finally have some solid benchmark tests courtesy of Laptop Mag that provide us new insight.

For the benchmark tests, Laptop Mag used an ASUS Eee Pad Transformer Prime, which is powered by Tegra 3, and put it up against the new iPad in GLBenchmark 2.1, Geekbench, and browsers’ benchmarks with Sunspider and Peacekeeper. In its last test (video above), the publication did a side-by-side subjective gaming performance test to try to spot any noticeable differences between the same title running on both devices. Here is what the publication found:

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The competition: Galaxy Nexus brings the heat, beating iOS 5 in browser speed tests, but falling in OpenGL Benchmarks

The first Ice Cream Sandwich handset, the Galaxy Nexus, hit the UK this week (US launch coming soon) and AnandTech has benchmarked the ICS/Galaxy Nexus combo vs. the iPhone 4S/iOS 5 combo.  The Galaxy Nexus processor/GPU isn’t groundbreaking by any means, but the new software inside is certainly packing a punch beating iOS in a few key areas. As seen in the graph to the right, the Galaxy Nexus has a slightly faster tested browser than the iPhone 4S — a crucial day-to-day necessity for users.

The Galaxy Nexus also comes up with the win in JavaScript loading, bringing faster load times than the Droid RAZR and iPhone 4S. Don’t think the Galaxy Nexus is going to come away with everything, however. Both Apple’s iPhone 4S and iPad 2 outperform the Galaxy Nexus in GPU loading — which is limited by its slower SGX 540 underneath.  That’s an important consideration for gaming.

The Galaxy Nexus’s hardware has been dubbed very smooth compared to older versions of Android. Google is activating 550,000 Android devices a day and is still behind iOS in total Activations at 200 million total.   Head after the break for more graphs.

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Skype on iOS has a big hole that can send your AddressBook to a hacker [video]

Security firm SuperEVR posts a video of their exploit which always makes it more real/scary.

I found that Skype also improperly defines the URI scheme used by the built-in webkit browser for Skype. Usually you will see the scheme set to something like, “about:blank” or “skype-randomtoken”, but in this case it is actually set to “file://”. This gives an attacker access to the users file system, and an attacker can access any file that the application itself would be able to access.

File system access is partially mitigated by the iOS Application sandbox that Apple has implemented, preventing an attacker from accessing certain sensitive files. However, every iOS application has access to the users AddressBook, and Skype is no exception.

I imagine the iPad app is also susceptible .

TechCrunch notes:

Skype says it is aware of the security issue, and had issued the following statement:

“We are working hard to fix this reported issue in our next planned release which we hope to roll out imminently. In the meantime we always recommend people exercise caution in only accepting friend requests from people they know and practice common sense internet security as always.”

The non-patronizing first sentence would have been sufficient, Skype.

Skype is on a #Winning streak since it got bought by Microsoft earlier this year.

Apple’s iCloud built using the SproutCore framework

Apple’s new iCloud Web apps are built using the same SproutCore Javascript engine that was used throughout MobileMe.  If the favicon above doesn’t prove it, looking at the underlying code below seems to offer undeniable evidence.

SproutCore describes itself as an open-source framework for building blazingly fast, innovative user experiences on the web.

Here’s a nice interview with Charles Jolley, one of the founders of SproutCore and previous MobileMe Javascript Frameworks Manager.  He left Apple about a year ago to start Strobe – a device agnostic Web publishing engine based on…you guessed it, SproutCore.

Interestingly, SproutCore lists Strobe Inc. as its parent company.

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Edge, Adobe’s new web motion and interaction design tool, now available as a preview

Adobe today released its “Flash for HTML5″ web design tool Edge into Beta.

Adobe® Edge is a new web motion and interaction design tool that allows designers to bring animated content to websites, using web standards like HTML5, JavaScript, and CSS3.

This version of Edge focuses primarily on adding rich motion design to new or existing HTML projects, that runs beautifully on devices and desktops.

  • Create new compositions with Edge’s drawing and text tools.
  • Import popular web graphics such as SVG, PNG, JPG or GIF files.
  • Easily choreograph animation with the timeline editor. Animate position, size, color, shape, rotation and more at the property level.
  • Energize existing HTML files with motion, while preserving the integrity of CSS-based HTML layouts.
  • Copy and paste transitions, invert them, and choose from over 25 built-in easing effects for added creativity.

Two example videos and feature breakdown below (Via The Loop): Read more

Inconclusive tests paint Android browser 52 percent faster than iPhone's, but what about Safari's Nitro engine? (UPDATED: the testing is flawed)

According to a Blaze study stemming from 45,000 Android and iOS tests, the Android browser on average loads web pages 52 percent faster than mobile Safari. The results are inconclusive, however, because it’s unclear whether Blaze’s measurements take into account the new Nitro JavaScript engine that comes with iOS 4.3. The report was completed before this complaint was made public and Blaze is arguing that the lack of Nitro boost can “slightly” skew the results given that “JavaScript only accounts for a small percentage of the total load time.”

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