Author: Amanda Giasson

Mobile gaming controller turns smartphones into consoles

PhoneJoy makes it easier for mobile gamers to play games with greater complexity.

More and more complex games are popping up in the mobile gaming industry and, although players are starting to feel the limitations of touchscreen controls, they may be able to overcome their struggles using the Android and iOS compatible PhoneJoy Bluetooth game controller.

The expandable gamepad can be attached directly to the smartphone or used as a separate handheld controller.

The PhoneJoy controller features a start button, two analog sticks, four action buttons, a d-pad, four shoulder buttons and back buttons. When attached to a smartphone, it looks something like the Sony Playstation Vita and other similar portable gaming consoles.

The smartphone is placed between the two controller halves and the phone is secured in place with a sprung ratchet mechanism. The phone can be held in a vertical (portrait) or horizontal (landscape) position. How the mobile device is positioned depends on the user’s preferences and on the type of game that is being played.

This mobile gaming controller does not need to be hooked up to a smartphone to work, however. It can also be used as a standalone handheld controller. Thus, it can also work with a tablet, giving mobile gamers greater flexibility and more than one control option when playing mobile games.

Currently, there are approximately 400 Android and iOS games that support the mobile gaming gadget.

The PhoneJoy gamepad uses the standard Bluetooth features that come with the average smartphone. Users can utilize the PhoneJoy app or the standard Bluetooth settings in their handset to pair the controller with the phone. The user interface and touchscreen can be used normally once paired, but once the game starts, the controller will send the appropriate inputs to any app that is well coded.

Once the PhoneJoy app is downloaded it will help users with their initial Bluetooth connection and will also give them a list of mobiles games that work with the gamepad. Furthermore, users can download the app prior to purchasing the actual device to determine if the controller would be ideal for their specific mobile gaming experience. The PhoneJoy is now available for purchase but was initially funded through Kickstarter.

Mobile app knows what Facebook users are watching

The social media giant recently released a new optional feature for its iOS and Android app users.

Last week, Facebook upgraded its mobile app for iPhone and Android mobile phones, which now gives users the option of using the microphones of their mobile devices to listen and identify music and TV content and share this information in their posts.

The audio-recognition feature can be turned on or off.

Users who are interested in taking advantage of this feature will be given the option to turn it on after updating the app and they will also be provided with information on how the new feature functions. If the user chooses to turn it on it will make it easier for them to share what they are watching or listening to as soon as they begin writing a post. The app will give users the option to include information about what is playing in the background if they want to include that in their status update. The feature can also be turned off at any time.

Aryeh Selkman, the product manager who was in charge of developing the app’s audio-recognition feature said, “We want to help people tell better stories.” He added, “I hope there are people who love the feature and post more.” If Facebook users share more about what is of interest to them, this could potentially increase the value of ads that are targeted at some of the social network’s billion-plus users.Facebook Mobile App Update

The social media mobile app works much like the popular audio-recognition app Shazam.

The technology used in the Facebook app is very similar to Shazam because it utilizes the microphones that have been integrated into a smartphone to recognize television and music. Facebook signed deals to attain audio from 160 TV stations in America. According to the social media company, it only takes 15 seconds for the app to identify a live show.

In addition, Facebook has stated that it has made deals with music streaming sites like Rdio and Spotify, which gives users of Facebook the ability to preview songs that other users have shared. Songs can be previewed using the same mobile app audio identification feature.