It wasn't an easy task following up on a phone that people already loved, but OnePlus has done just that with its second-gen flagship. Mostly, anyhow. The OnePlus 2 is an improvement over its predecessor in just about every way, with fast performance and solid build quality, all for a reasonable starting price of $329. That said, OnePlus faces stiffer competition in this price range than it did a year ago. Meanwhile, this updated model makes a few missteps, including a lack of NFC, a flaky fingerprint sensor and some early-build bugs. Given that OnePlus seems to be working on fixes for those lingering software issues, we still strongly recommend this, with a score of 86 out of a 100. It's definitely worth a look, provided you don't care about NFC and don't mind the lack of expandable storage. Learn about all that and more in our mini review video, and if you have time for a deep dive, check out our full review.

After delays plagued the initial launch of Coin's Bluetooth single-card solution to slimming down your wallet, the company is back with version 2.0. The new option still stores credit card info for taking care of the bill after lunch, but there's a big addition in tow: NFC. With the addition of NFC tap to pay, you can make contactless payments with the cards stored on Coin. While the new version is starting to ship today, the company is still working on "additional partnerships" with banks and financial institutions, though, so it'll arrive with an Early-Access-Mode. Basically, your options for tapping to pay will be limited at first, but as more banks opt in, you'll be able to enable EMV compatibility through a software update. Speaking of EMV, those Chip and Pin cards will work with the new Coin, too.

Facebook Messenger's M assistant

Remember that talk of Facebook testing its own virtual assistant? Well, it's real. The social network is trying out M, an artificial intelligence-powered Messenger assistant that can answer questions and complete tasks. You can ask it for advice on places to go, for instance, or have it make travel arrangements. Think of it as a Siri- or Cortana-like helper that exists solely in text chat. It should be less likely to make mistakes, though, as Facebook is quick to note that there are humans training and supervising the AI behind the scenes. And in case you're wondering, it only bases its conversations around Messenger -- it's not using your regular Facebook data to make decisions.

Must Reads

  • Windows 10 won't run old games with dodgy copy protection

    Do you recall the bad old days of PC games in the mid-2000s, when titles were loaded with copy protection that was not only a hassle, but horribly insecure? Well, Microsoft does -- and that could be a problem if you're trying to run some of those vintage games on Windows 10. The company notes that...

  • Developer reveals Mac security hole without telling Apple

    Typically, coders and researchers who discover security vulnerabilities in software will tell the companies involved before posting their findings -- it's a courtesy to make sure that those holes are patched before attackers can use them. Don't tell that to developer Luca Todesco, though. He recently...


Free apps sometimes try to rope you into in-app purchases to make a profit. Not so with Amazon's new approach to free software, though, as the online retailer is offering over $10,000 in apps, games and even those in-app add-ons at no cost. Yes, it sounds too good to be true on the surface, but Bezos & Co. will compensate developers based on how long you use their apps. Amazon will shell out per-minute payments in exchange for developers nixing any fees, which means for the software is free to download and use. GdgtSpot reports that the company's "Free App of the Day" promotion is no more, so it looks like Underground will replace it. Since Google Play's rules don't allow for apps that serve up other apps or games, you'll have to download the Underground app directly from Amazon. And when you do, look for the "Actually Free" designation for items that are included in the new initiative.

This week, we're having fun with geocaching! Are you a fan of these urban treasure hunts? If you want to learn more about the geocache I mention in the video, head over here and happy hunting!

We also welcome Tom Merritt back on the show to talk about places where you can find amazing content after you've finally cut that cord. Speaking of great content, I share my favorite podcasts for your listening pleasure! Just make sure you subscribe and watch mine first. Keep sending in those questions on Twitter using #DearVeronica, or via email! See you next time.

Two years ago, Motorola pioneered a new smartphone category with the original Moto G: the almost flagship. It was a device that offered close to high-end performance and design with a price-tag usually reserved for less capable mid-tier handsets. It's now the company's bestselling smartphone and few, if any of its rivals have managed to replicate its winning formula. The latest competitor to step up and take a shot is Wileyfox, a complete newcomer from the UK. Over the next couple of months it'll be launching two new smartphones which run the Cyanogen flavor of Android: the Swift and the Storm. The cheaper of the two, the £129 ($200) Swift, sits somewhere between the latest Moto G and entry-level Moto E. But it's got a lot to prove if it hopes to steal some of the company's thunder.

Malaysia Plane

If you're planning to drive in Malaysia in the next few years, don't expect to maintain a lot of privacy. The country plans to implement RFID-equipped road tax stickers that will help authorities track all vehicles, whether they're local or foreign. It'll start with a pilot program at a border checkpoint this October, but it should expand to cover the whole of Malaysia by 2018. And don't think of trying to take the sticker off -- it'll shatter and transmit a warning if you try to tamper with it.

Imagine a pocket-sized camera that lets you refocus after you take the shot. Believe it or not, the technology isn't a far-fetched photographer fantasy anymore: The Lytro Light Field Camera has kicked the evolution of photography into overdrive, capturing images in 3D to put the entire frame in sharp focus. It's the first consumer shooter to harness the entire light field, and it completely changes how you take photos. For a limited time, you can get the first-generation edition (with 16GB of built-in storage) for 59 percent off -- just $79.99 with free shipping.

Russian capsule docked at the International Space Station

It's not a great time to be a Russian cosmonaut. Thanks to the International Space Station making a maneuver to avoid space junk, the next Soyuz spacecraft's flight (due September 2nd) will take two days to reach the station instead of the relatively brisk six hours of recent trips. That's more than a little unpleasant if you're stuck in a cramped capsule, and negates a lot of the planning work that has saved so much time from 2013 onward. There's no indication as to when (or if) launches will speed up, so crews may have little choice but to tough it out in the near future.

[Image credit: NASA, Flickr]

Before it was a TV show and video game, The Walking Dead was a comic book from publisher Image Comics. It's a great series and if you're interested in catching up on the source material for the TV show, you might be in luck. The public library app, Hoopla announced today that it was partnering with Image Comics to bring The Walking Dead, Spawn and Saga to its service. Hoopla partners with local libraries to give library card holders the ability to check out digital copies of books, music, videos, audiobooks and comics. the amount of titles available for check during the month depends on the deal between Hoopla and the library. But when your check out period is up, the title automatically disappears from your iOS, Android device or Kindle tablet. It recently added a bunch of DC titles including a whole slew of Dark Knight graphic novels to its roster. So if you're library supports Hoopla and you want to supplement your watching of Fear the Walking Dead you can do so without spending any money.

If you're still wondering why Microsoft made Windows 10 free, just consider the latest stats: It's now on 75 million computers one month after its big launch, Windows corporate VP Yusuf Mehdi tweeted today. In comparison, it took six months for Microsoft to sell 100 million Windows 8 licenses, a more nebulous stat that didn't necessarily include actual installs. None of this is a surprise though: We've written extensively about Microsoft's desire to build a long-lasting Windows platform, and that starts with prioritizing the number of people running Windows 10 rather than mere revenues. Mehdi also divulged some other intriguing tidbits: More than "90,000 unique PC or tablet models" have upgraded to Windows 10; over 122 years of gameplay have been streaming to Windows 10 PCs from Xbox One consoles; and, perhaps most intriguingly, the Windows 10 store "has seen 6x more app downloads "per device than Windows 8."

The Galaxy S6 Edge+ is the closest thing we've got to a "Samsung greatest hits" phone. There's the sleek, curved glass from the S6 Edge coupled with the larger 5.7-inch screen from the Note lineup. Together, they make up one of Samsung's most memorable smartphones yet. But while the Galaxy S6 Edge+ ($300 on-contract; $768 to $815 off) is certainly striking, the Korean electronics giant clearly still has some kinks to work out around curved screens. It's a feature that's slightly more useful here than on the S6 Edge, but fundamentally it's still just about aesthetics, rather than function. That might not be a problem for some, but Samsung still has to prove why curved screens are more than a gimmick.

Samsung is releasing three new 360-degree wireless speakers -- the R1, R3 and R5 -- as a follow-up to its Portal-esque R7 device. They're not quite egg-shaped like their predecessor (and its own predecessors), but they feature the same "ring-radiator" technology that helps them fill a room with sound. Plus, they now have a physical user interface on the top panel that allows users to quickly play, pause, adjust the volume and switch music sources.

If you want in on the connected car action but your vehicle is nearly as old as the internet, Verizon's new Hum service may help. It's a $15 per month plan that includes an iOS or Android smartphone app and CDMA-enabled hardware that plugs into an OBD-II port, something all 1996 and newer vehicles have. (The port is also used by Automatic Link and other apps.) The device gathers engine diagnostic data and relays warnings to a visor-mounted speaker device and the smartphone app. If something's wrong, the app can provide more info and even an estimated cost for any repairs.

We know what the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 looks like, but what about the important stuff? Namely, when we'll be able to get our paws on it and how much it'll cost? Well, boy howdy the Korean electronics juggernaut's answered both of those questions this morning. You can pre-order the slate starting today and the device hits "select" US retailers and carriers come September 3rd. A WiFi model packed with 32GB of storage and a 9.7-inch screen will set you back a cool $499.99 while the 8-inch model with the same capacity is $100 less.

Today on In Case You Missed It, we showcase a double-barreled fireworks cannon that's just slightly less dangerous than that personal flamethrower you've had your eye on. We've also got Sony's first drone prototype -- it's a little remote controlled Harrier! And if you thought that explainer video from Snapchat's CEO was terrible, just wait until you see this Alienware unboxing. Finally, an enterprising noodle shop owner in China got his hands on a refurbished Ultraman assembly robot and converted it into, what else, an automated noodle slicer.

If you come across any interesting videos, we'd love to see them. Just tweet us with the #ICYMI hashtag @engadget or @mskerryd. And if you just want to heap praise on your handsome guest host, feel free to hit him up @mr_trout.

Airport panorama B San Francisco international airport

A former manager at the company that makes Game of War -- that's the one with Kate Upton, not the one with Ned Stark -- has been arrested for allegedly downloading trade secrets relating to the title. Jing Zeng was grabbed by FBI agents at the airport shortly before he was due to board a flight to Beijing on August 20th. As the Wall Street Journal reports, it's the latest in a series of efforts by American companies to prevent the theft of sensitive data, which is often taken by rival nations. It's not clear if Zeng had any intention to share the information with others, since at the same time he was engaged in brinksmanship with his employers concerning a severance package. The case has yet to go to trial, but we'd suggest that no matter how much you hate your colleagues, you'll probably hate a trip to the slammer slightly more.

We love Sony's penchant for crazy products like the P clamshell Android tablet, and who can forget the Rolly music player slash robotic, LED flashing... thing? Judging by a new speaker, the company still has a whimsical side despite falling profits. The SRS-LSR100 pairs a TV remote with a wireless speaker, which receives a 2.4GHz signal from dongle attached to your TV or stereo. The idea is to bring the TV sound closer to you, whether you're in the living room, exercise room or kitchen. And since you're there, why not have a channel-changer?

The firm behind Angry Birds has announced that it's laying off a further 260 employees as it attempts to become a smaller and more profitable company. CEO Pekka Rantala admits that Rovio was too eager to "explore new business opportunities," which it did by doing "too many things." Unfortunately, with profits tumbling, the outfit is going to have to go back to being a stripped-down games maker. The lay-offs will come from all areas of the business except those working on the Sony-backed Angry Birds Movie in the US and Canada. It's not much of a surprise since it looked as if the company's day in the sun had ended a while ago. After all, Angry Birds 2 is the thirteenth title in the series, so it's clearly been flogging a seriously-injured horse for quite some time.