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We knew Instagram's effort to nab a bit of Snapchat's thunder was imminent thanks to leaked promo banners, and now, the app has officially arrived... for some. Bolt, the filter-driven photo app's own ephemeral messenger has hit iTunes and Google Play for folks in Singapore, South Africa and New Zealand. The software's claim to fame is speed: instead of having to fiddle through a series of options, tapping a contact's picture both captures and sends a photo -- no further swiping required (tap and hold records video). So long as they're in your favorites list, of course. There's also an undo feature that allows you to retrieve a message in the first few seconds by shaking your phone. While Bolt doesn't require a Facebook or Instagram account, you will have to sign up with your phone number for sorting through your contacts. For now though, most of us have to find solace in just reading about it, since a select few locales are privy to the initial rollout. Instagram's word on that particular strategy is situated after the break.

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Cannes Lions 59th International Festival of Creativity - The Twitter Seminar

One of Twitter's primary concerns is that the number of active users -- those who use the network at least once a month -- continues to grow at a healthy pace, and its latest quarterly earnings confirm that the social network has been eating its vegetables. After reporting a solid growth of 14 million active users last quarter, the service brought in 16 million this time around, reaching a grand total of 271 million. This is an increase of 6.3 percent, which is an improvement over last quarter's 5.8 percent (though not quite as good as the ten percent growth the company saw a year ago). Not bad, given that it had to admit a slowing number of new users earlier this year in its first earnings report as an IPO. Of this number, Twitter acknowledged that 78 percent of them are actively using the service on mobile devices (this is reflected in the fact that 81 percent of advertising revenue comes from smartphones and tablets).

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It's no secret that 3D printing is making big strides for the future of not just technology, but medicine and space exploration as well. And the United States Army is looking to leverage the platform for its warhead production. 3D printing is nothing new to this particular branch of the military, as it has been working on bioprinted replacement skin for battle wounds -- amongst other projects. The Army is looking to implement the tech to produce components for the weapons that will both reduce cost and increase customization. "The real value you get is you can get more safety, lethality or operational capability from the same space," said materials engineer James Zunino. Part of the allure here is that warheads could also be built to suit each mission, rather being mass-produced to outfit a range of duties. But the Army isn't stopping with pieces: the possibility of printing an entire rocket isn't too far fetched given how quickly 3D printing continues to develop. As with any military-grade weapon, the risk of the production files falling into the wrong hands is certainly a concern.

[Photo credit: Aamir QureshiI/AFP/Getty Images]

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Getting Democrats and Republicans to pass an act of Congress is the exception more than the rule. But if there's one thing both sides of the aisle can agree on, it's that the US policy for unlocking phones is backwards. Early last year, it became illegal to unlock your handset for use on other carriers unless your provider directly gives you the permission to do so. Thanks to moves from the Senate and House this month, legislation to remove this restriction is just a presidential signature away from passing; it's not a permanent solution, but at least it's a step in the right direction for consumer freedom.

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One of the things you can't find on the Apple TV is an official store for apps, but this hasn't kept the tiny box from becoming a solid device for entertainment purposes. To make things better, the Apple TV is adding Fox Now and CNBC to its ever-growing content repertoire, though there are the usual pay-TV caveats to consider. If you do have the right subscription, however, you can unlock each application's full potential right away, which means access to a lot more videos, live and on-demand. Fox Now, for its part, features full episodes from different shows, including Glee, Family Guy, New Girl and Masterchef. CNBC, meanwhile, lets you watch a live stream of some of its programming if you're a cable subscriber; as 9to5Mac points out, there are on-demand clips available within the news-focused channel, but that's as much as cord-cutters should expect. Both new apps are showing up on our Apple TV already, so be prepared to see them on yours the next time you power it on.

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LG Heart Rate Monitor Earphone review: good fitness gadget, poor earphones

Heart rate monitors are no longer the exclusive domain of fitness gadgets. The last 12 months have seen sensors make their way into smartphones and wearables, replacing for many of us the need for a standalone pulse monitor. The problem is a lot of these options have been unable to deliver accurate heart rate mesurements, partly because those sensors have to maintain contact with your skin; if they slip, then the readout skips. Maybe LG has the answer, then: Put heart rate monitoring technology into a pair of Bluetooth headphones. If you're like me and are constantly wired for sound during workouts, what could possibly be better?

LG's Heart Rate Monitor earphones link to an iOS/Android app, with absolutely nothing burdening your wrists. LG's fitness app can even add your exercise sessions to a step counter, so long as you buy LG's optional Lifeband Touch fitness band. What's more, the app also integrates with other fitness apps like RunKeeper. It all sounds great on paper, but there's a problem: the headphones don't actually sound good. Let me explain.

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2014 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival - Weekend 2 - Day 1

If you enjoy taking in the summer's big music festivals from the comforts of your sofa, you've likely already peeped this year's Coachella and Bonaroo livestreams. The in-home viewing continues this weekend with Chicago's annual Lollapalooza event, kicking off Friday, August 1st at 2PM CT on Red Bull TV. Over the course of the weekend, there's three channels of over 100 performances on tap, with interviews and behind-the-scenes content peppered in. In addition to web access, the festivities will be beamed to Apple TV, Xbox 360, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Samsung Smart TVs and a range of mobile devices for a truckload of streaming options. Notable acts set to take the stage between Friday and Sunday include Outkast, Kings of Leon, Skrillex, Phantogram, Broken Bells and The Avett Brothers -- just to name a few.

[Photo credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images for Coachella]

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It appears EA and Microsoft have been paying attention to Netflix and PlayStation Now (which opens its doors to all PS4 owners in two days), and are combining to offer a different subscription service for gamers. The EA Access pass is available (currently in beta) for $5 per month or $30 per year and gives subscribers unlimited access to a "Vault" of games. Right now that list covers FIFA 14, Madden NFL 25, Peggle 2 and Battlefield 4, with the promise of more titles soon. Not enticed by the promise of last year's games plus 10 percent discounts on EA games, DLC, and in-game currency? They're also adding in early access trials for this year's round of EA sports games (Madden, NHL, NBA Live, FIFA) and Dragon Age: Inquisition that open up five days before the games go on sale and let your progress carry over to the retail version.

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Airbnb has realized the next step is to start heavily targeting business users. Uber has clearly come to the same conclusion, and just like the subletting startup, it's bringing direct billing to business customers. The centralized system would not only cover payments, but would eliminate the need to track receipts. Companies would automatically receive all the necessary trip details after their employee finished a ride. Even if your company doesn't choose to do direct billing, you can still connect your Uber and Concur accounts to have e-receipts automatically filed on your behalf. We won't lie and say Uber for Business is the most exciting development in the world, but it certainly makes managing your expenses a lot easier.

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Some of the main items that Beats Music claims set it apart from the competition are its personalization and curated content. Looking to boost both of those areas, Apple's pending purchase has tossed in a few tweaks. First, if you're familiar with the service, you know that upon launching the app for the first time, you're prompted to select a few of your favorite artists and genres to give Beats a clue to your audio sensibilities. Those selections are now editable, making adding and deleting easy for evolving tastes. You're also able to access a list of recently played tracks from the handy Sentence feature -- just in case you forgot to mark 'em for later. More playlists have also been added to the Just for You section, increasing the amount and range of recommendations. All of the recent additions are available now through the service's mobile and web apps.

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