CyanogenMod installer removed from Play Store on Google’s request

Despite the simplification of the process, this could be a reasonable move to protect consumers, as not everybody might fully understand what they’re getting themselves into. The good news is that you can still sideload it, so there shouldn’t be a problem for those who still want to use the installer.

Google removes CyanogenMod Installer from Play Store

The reasoning given by Google is that the CyanogenMod Installer violates the Google Play Store’s developer terms by actively encouraging Android users to “void [the] warranty” on their devices. As we saw when we took the app for a test drive, the Installer does indeed de-hair the hairy process of unlocking an Android device’s bootloader and getting an alternate ROM installed; apparently, though, the Installer made things just a little too easy. As our Android expert Ron Amadeo noted, the CyanogenMod Installer is mostly a “one-way street,” without a quick way to return the device to its stock state—it’s certainly possible, but not with the same level of ease.

Evernote embraces hardware

By now most folks already know that Evernote has entered the hardware game. It’s not easy, but I’m pretty confident that Evernote will be able to pull it off with aplomb.

Taming Evernote’s paper tiger

Libin says he has come to peace with the idea that paper is with us for the long term. Indeed, while more forms are coming online and digital-signature options are becoming more popular, paper forms are still difficult to avoid.

$7.5 million worth of Bitcoins discarded in landfill

If you’re storing some Bitcoins around, it’s best to ensure that they’re stored properly. Those 7,500 Bitcoins would translate to about $7,500,000 when the crytocurrency reached $1,000 recently.

Missing: hard drive containing Bitcoins worth £4m in Newport landfill site

“You know when you put something in the bin, and in your head, say to yourself ‘that’s a bad idea’? I really did have that,” Howells, who works in IT, told the Guardian. “I don’t have an exact date, the only time period I can give – and I’ve been racking my own brains – is between 20 June and 10 August. Probably mid-July”. At the time he obliviously threw them away, the 7,500 Bitcoins on the hard-drive were worth around £500,000. Since then, the cryptocurrency’s value has soared, passing $1,000 on Wednesday afternoon.

Volkswagen’s Play the Road app

WIRED.com reports on Volkswagen’s Play the Road app that tailors music to your driving.

To begin with, VW’s boffins enlisted the help of the legendary sonic duo Underworld to help create the sounds, synths, and rhythms to create an ever-evolving soundtrack. Then they used an iPhone’s accelerometer and gyroscope to track the GTI’s maneuvers, followed by cross-referencing it with onboard video and GPS of exactly what the car was doing on the track. After that, they tethered the phone to the car’s on-board computer to get speed and engine revs, then ported it all to the Pure Data musical programming language that creates live sound.

Retina iPad Mini has a poorer display compared to the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HDX

Cult of Android reports that the Retina iPad Mini loses out to Nexus 7, Kindle Fire HDX in DisplayMate’s screen comparison

“The new Google Nexus 7 has a very impressive display that uses the highest performance LCDs with Low Temperature Poly Silicon LTPS,” DisplayMate found. “The very high efficiency LTPS technology allows the new Nexus 7 display to provide a full 100 percent Color Gamut and at the same time produce the brightest Tablet display that we have measured so far in this Shoot-Out series.”

As for the Kindle Fire HDX, that was the most impressive overall. It’s the first tablet display to use “high technology Quantum Dots,” DisplayMate says, “which produce highly saturated primary colors that are similar to those produced by OLED displays.”

WeChat’s first 5 games hit 570 million downloads in 3 months

The Next Web reports that the first 5 games for Tencent’s WeChat messaging app has 570 million downloads since August.

Compare it with LINE to better understand what a feat this is. LINE boasts of more than 30 games but only managed to cross the 200 million game download mark in September.

Earlier, Chinese phone manufacturer Xiaomi sold 150,000 of its latest phone in 10 minutes via WeChat. This underlines the size of China’s mobile market.

China, and the soaring price of Bitcoin

Tyler Cowen writes about the link between China and Bitcoin.

Capital controls in China are strict. It’s easy to bring money into the country, but getting it out (to invest or spend) is more difficult. That means there are are plenty of wealthy Chinese citizens and residents looking to move their money around the world with greater freedom.

There is more here. And here is a map of Bitcoin flows, recommended. In other words, more entrepreneurs in China are holding Bitcoin and accepting the volatility of its value, in order to sell the asset to those looking to get money out of China.

Is Amazon winning the cloud battle?

Everybody knows that Amazon’s AWS is the major player in the cloud computing game, but did we stop to consider how big it actually is?

Amazon Is Crushing IBM, Microsoft, And Google In Cloud Computing, Says Report

For the last quarter of this year, Synergy estimates that Amazon grew cloud revenues by over $700 million and that makes Amazon bigger than all the other major players combined including Microsoft, IBM, Google and Salesforce.com … by 15%, Synergy finds.

T-Mobile and AT&T battle on twitter to win one customer

It’s not often that you see this happen, but it’s also nice to see social media used in positive ways. Now if only carriers paid that much attention to existing customers.

T-Mobile and AT&T went head-to-head on Twitter over a customer

Is Fab.com doomed to repeat the mistakes of Jobster?

Even with a billion-dollar valuation, without a strong leader, a company is going to suffer. Will Fab.com be able to get back on track?

Demolition Man: why does Fab’s CEO keep building big companies that suddenly implode?

Traffic to Fab’s website and mobile apps peaked in November of 2012, according to ComScore, just before Goldberg announced the pivot away from flash sales. In the 10 months that followed unique visitors fell from 5,275,000 to around 1 million in total this September, a drop of roughly 75 percent. The decline in visitors has been mirrored by a slowdown in sales growth. When asked to comment on the sharp dip in traffic, Fab says that it doesn’t share internal numbers, but that the company is more profitable than ever. “That’s a little confusing,” jokes a source familiar with the company’s finances. “Maybe they mean less not profitable?”