One UI smartwatch faces

During their virtual event at MWC21 last week, Samsung focused a lot of the conversation around One UI Watch. As announced in Google I/O earlier this year, they have been working closely with Google to unify the Android watch experience and improve on the Samsung Galaxy ecosystem of products (see also: their partnership with Microsoft). There's a 4-minute recap available if you don't have the half hour to spare or you could check out the individual segments that were broken up in the Samsung Newsroom post. Either way, it's worth a look.

Filed under "follow the money," Tapcart has managed to raise $50M of investor funding. Now, admittedly, startups and investing are not my area of expertise. But a company that is referred to as a "Shopify for mobile apps" raising that much money — and processing $1.2B in merchant sales over the past 12 months — definitely grabs my attention. It also speaks volumes about the value of mobile and, specifically, mobile commerce.

I've mentioned before that I, along with many others, have hypothesized that the travel industry will see a boom in the post-COVID world. And, with their recent app redesign for both iOS & Android, clearly Tripadvisor agrees. I am actually a frequent user of Tripadvisor and stumbled across the redesign through casual use, which I do believe is an improvement. I was happy to be able to include the article above (instead of me having to write one myself because time).

Speaking of post-COVID, support for vaccine cards is being added to Android devices. Using the Google Pay API, this is a feature that I'm not surprised at all to hear about and suspect that there will be many other uses in the years to come. And, assuming that it works the same as many other wallet cards, being able to show it while the screen is locked should mitigate any privacy concerns.

And if Apple betas are your thing, you might be happy to hear that the public betas for iOS15, iPadOS 15, and watchOS 8 are now available. And, if you've never participated before, I would not recommend installing them on your primary device or, at the very least, make sure you back up everything before you do.


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