Chances are you have a smartphone, tablet and computer combo, so it could get pretty annoying to get pinged simultaneously on those devices when you're exchanging messages with someone. Skype and iMessage both do this, but now the Microsoft-owned service is keen on changing that. Today, Skype announced that it's found a way to reduce all the noise for people who are logged in to their accounts on multiple devices, thanks to a new feature called "Active endpoint." Now when you're messaging back and forth on your phone, those chat notifications will only be sent to that device -- as opposed to before, where it would also send them to, say, your tablet or laptop at the same time. Skype says that, while notification are set to hit that one active device, the chat history is still being synced across multiple devices, making it easy for you to keep your conversations going from anywhere. This new feature is coming to Skype "over the next few weeks," so expect to see the changes soon.

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Pepsi Super Bowl XLVIII Halftime Show

Being selected to play the Super Bowl Halftime Show is a huge deal -- there's no doubt about that. But this year, the NFL is asking potential acts for the 2015 installment to fork over a share of their post-game tour profits. According to The Wall Street Journal, the league is asking its top three candidates to pay to get the gig. The short list of acts has already been whittled down to Rhianna, Katy Perry and Coldplay, with the NFL seeking to agree on a direct contribution or another form of financial kickback while it makes its final decision. As you might expect, WSJ's sources say the request was met with a "chilly reception" across the board.

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Vine video importing

If there has been a recurring gripe with Vine, it's that you've had to capture all your videos in Vine to share them -- you either had to record 6-second square clips or head elsewhere. You won't have to make that compromise any more, though. As of today, iOS users (Android is coming soon) can use existing videos in their Vines, no matter how many are needed or how they were shot. If you want to stitch together highlights from your iPhone 5s' slow-motion footage, you can.

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If you're in the market for a new handset to accompany you on campus this fall, your timing's just right. You couldn't ask for a better selection of choices, and plenty of the phones in the gallery below are downright budget-friendly. That said, if you can hold off for a bit, you might want to see what Apple and Samsung have in store -- both companies are expected to announce new smartphones within the next month. Note that we've listed devices based on their unlocked and contract-free prices, though you'll pay less up front if you sign up with a carrier. Oh, and don't forget to check out the rest of our Back To School guide for more product picks.

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Verizon Wireless store

You may think that the Play Store is a fine place to get Android apps, but Verizon apparently isn't very happy with Google's dominance -- it wants carriers to have some control. Sources for The Information claim that Verizon is in early talks with both other providers and hardware makers to create a global Android store that lets developers make full use of the "specific features" of a given network. Developers would be encouraged to hop aboard by getting the freedom to advertise, and there would be dynamic app recommendations that not only suggest downloads based on where you are (like iOS), but also the time of day and friend activity. Think of it as an adaptive interface for apps you don't own yet.

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Barnes & Noble has officially kicked off a new era -- one in which it doesn't manufacture its own tablets. The struggling book outlet announced last summer that it would work with other manufacturers going forward and Samsung is first in line. The Galaxy Tab 4 Nook is the fruit of this partnership. It's a tablet built for reading first, as opposed to gaming or web browsing. While the device is undeniably Samsung, the software still retains some of that Barnes & Noble flair. Anyone who's used the previous Nook tablets will immediately recognize some of the features baked in here. The default homescreen has a widget showing recommended and recently read titles. Naturally, too, Barnes & Noble's Nook store is the primary content source, rather than the Play Store or Samsung Hub. But it's obvious that Sammy is in the driver's seat. Key features like multi-window mode are even included for some multi-tasking (say, if you want to tweet a quote from your favorite novel). B&N is pitching it as "the first full-featured Android tablet designed for reading." Then again, the company has said the same about every other Nook tablet.

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Chinese phone makers are smacking Samsung and others around right now, but it's still hard to find high-end, non-carrier-branded devices stateside. That said, ZTE -- which has quietly become the world's number five smartphone brand -- has just launched its Nubia 5S mini LTE in the US unlocked for $280. You may be more tempted by a Nexus 5 if specs are your thing, as the Nubia 5s mini is "merely" equipped with a quad-core Snapdragon 400, 2GB RAM, 16GB expandable memory and a 4.7-inch, 720p screen. But ZTE's wooing a younger crowd by touting the ample 5-megapixel front/13-megapixel rear cameras with f/2.2 iris and manual controls, along with the photo effects, LTE (for GSM carriers) and pocketable size. It also vows to repair any damage you inflict for any reason up to 18 months after purchase for $80 -- a boon to any of us who've broken a screen. It's now up on pre-order at Amazon, with shipping set to start on August 27th.

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Secret on an iPhone

Secret's app is ostensibly meant for office gossip and getting transgressions out of your system, but it has also been abused by bullies wanting to intimidate and shame others. Well, one Brazilian judge is fed up with that misuse -- enough so that he's ordering Apple and Google to remove Secret not just from their respective local app stores, but from people's devices. Microsoft also has to yank Cryptic, an equivalent Windows Phone app. If the companies don't take action within 10 days, they face fines of 20,000 Reals ($8,876) per day. That's a drop in the bucket given their massive revenue streams, but it's reasonable to say that they'd rather not pay that much just to keep one title available in one country.

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Now that home automation is all the rage, household security outfit ADT is looking to dive further into the fray with a hand from If This Then That (IFTTT). Using the home alarm company's Pulse system and the appropriate channel from the recipe-based app, you'll be able to leverage automated chores from IFTTT's library of tasks including disarming the alarm when your wearable switches out of sleep mode. You can also set a coffee maker in your kitchen to start brewing when your phone alarm wakes you and get a real-time video clip when the doorbell rings. ADT Pulse allows for remote control of a home security system from a mobile app, sending alerts and sorting remote video monitoring, too. It can the wrangle the connected thermostat and outlets for lighting and small appliances as well. Right now, the cooperative effort is looking to enter beta testing shortly with plans to open up a channel to the public afterwards that's full of pre-made recipes alongside the ability to create your own.

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It's sure been a long time since Sharp shipped a smartphone to American consumers. And, let's be honest with ourselves, the FX Plus wasn't exactly taking the market by storm. The Sidekick-esque slider was dated even by 2011 standards. But the company is hoping its AQUOS Crystal will have better fortunes. The (almost) bezel-less device offers high-end looks with decidedly mid-range internals. The 1.2GHz chip inside isn't going to set land-speed records, but it should be enough for most folks. The most important feature, though, is the edge-to-edge 5-inch display. While Sharp's description of it as a "groundbreaking" device might be a little over the top, we must admit it's quite a stunning panel -- especially for being five inches and only 720p.

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Once you tiptoe past a certain age, ignoring calls from mom and dad sort of becomes de rigueur as you go about your day. That sort of filial nonsense doesn't fly when you're younger though, and now there's an app to make sure you return you young'uns return your parents' calls - it's called Ignore No More, and it essentially works by locking down your smartphone until you call them to verbally check in.

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Feeling blue that the HTC One M8 for Windows is exclusive to Big Red? Good news: AT&T just confirmed that it'll carry the flagship Windows Phone... eventually. The carrier can't openly discuss details like pricing or availability yet -- likely because it can't sell the phone until the terms of the exclusive contract expire -- but at least we can rest a little more easily knowing that this top-of-the-line Windows Phone will expand its reach to more than just one carrier. Who knows: Since a GSM version will be available, that may open the door for the device to go to other parts of the world as well. While you wait, check out our hands-on coverage of the device here.

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Denver Broncos v San Francisco 49ers

When an NFL team builds a brand-new stadium, it's usually packed with the latest tech to ensure a flashy introduction. The Dallas Cowboys have absurdly large video screens over the field and the Arizona Cardinals can move the entire playing surface outdoors to soak up some rays. This season, the San Francisco 49ers moved from Candlestick Park to Levi's Stadium: the first of the NFL's venues to be LEED certified, thanks in part to a solar collection system that will power all 10 home games. To enhance the fan experience, there's a smartphone app that sorts tickets and concessions, and wrangles instant replay. In fact, you can use it to scout the line at the nearest beer cart or place an order in advance for pickup or seat-side delivery. As you might expect, this past weekend's first game action put the new system to the test, and as is common with most new large-scale tech, fans felt the bugs pretty quickly.

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The onward march of the selfie, there's no stopping it. Many people shudder at the slightest mention of the (now official) word. Others need only the flimsiest (and sometimes eyebrow-raising) reason to extend one arm and assume the duck face. Unsurprisingly, as with any part of popular culture, there's a backlash. SLMMSK is an "antiselfie" app for iOS (and Android eventually) that subverts the selfie, using the art form's very own weapon of choice -- the filter -- to obscure, rather than enhance, the subject's face. The app also adds a CCTV-esque grain effect and VHS-style timestamp to ramp up the underground vibe. You just need to pull your best grin, say YOLO, and take the snap. The "filters" include a black censor bar, heavy pixelation, warping and more. The dislike for selfies doesn't extend to social sharing though -- you can upload your best shots to Instagram and Facebook and jostle for attention among the uncensored self portraits as per usual. Judging by the associated (and equally anarchic-looking) website, you might even increase your infamy by bagging a featured spot.

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Fandango movie ticket purchasing for Android

Fandango slipped up in a big way between 2009 and 2013: its mobile apps would send your movie ticket purchases without a basic security measure, leaving credit card info and other data vulnerable to theft. However, the company is about to make amends for playing fast and loose with your personal info. The FTC has just approved a settlement with Fandango that will require the movie service to follow the straight and narrow. As agreed to in March, Fandango has to implement new procedures that address security concerns in apps before they reach the public; it will also have to get independent security reviews every other year for the next 20 years. The remedy won't help much if someone swiped your banking details while you were watching a summer blockbuster, but it should at least reduce the chances of a movie-related breach in the future.

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