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Clubhouse for Android is a couple of months away
by Paul Hill
According to Clubhouse co-founder Paul Davison, his popular but exclusive app is set to arrive on Android in a “couple of months”, according to a report in TechCrunch. Davison initially announced the Android time frame during a Clubhouse Townhall meeting that was subsequently made public when a recording was uploaded to YouTube.
This is not the first time we’ve heard mentions of Clubhouse arriving on Android. In a January blog post, the firm said that it was planning to bring its product to Android “soon” but never gave any concrete details. Last month, CNBC reported that the firm had now hired Android software developer Mopewa Ogundipe to begin work on the Android app.
Clubhouse’s appeal has not gone unnoticed by the larger tech firms who want to stomp on any competition before it becomes a threat. In February, there were reports that Facebook was working on an alternative to Clubhouse and at the end of last week, the messaging app Telegram got a new update which brought similar functionality to Telegram channels.
With its rivals working on similar products, it’s not clear right now whether Clubhouse will keep its invite-only model or make access open for everyone. On the one hand, exclusivity may boost its appeal – something Apple does with its high prices, on the other hand, rivals that make their competing product open may grow to become more popular than Clubhouse.
NASA unveils Perseverance landing footage and Mars audio
by Paul Hill
Just days after the successful landing of its Perseverance rover, NASA has released extraordinary footage of the landing sequence as well as audio from the surface of the planet where you can make out the sound of the wind blowing. High definition cameras that give a view above and below the rover, as well as the one looking from the vantage point of the sky crane, caught all the action beginning 11 kilometres from the surface to the rover’s landing.
Some of the highlights of the three-and-a-half-minute clip include seeing the Martian surface from a high altitude, seeing the dust on the surface come to life as the rover was close to landing, seeing the sky crane fly off after the rover had touched down and seeing the parachute unfurl. According to NASA, the parachute is also the most massive ever to be sent to another planet.
Commenting on the content, NASA Administrator Steve Jurczyk said:
To watch the descent, check out the embedded video below. To hear the audio from the rover, skip to 40:48 in this NASA event.
Since landing, NASA has been busy checking equipment on the rover to ensure there are no problems. Some of the instruments being checked this week include the Mars Environmental Dynamics Analyzer to look at the weather in the area and the Mastcam-Z which can take panoramic shots of the Jezero crater. The crater used to be a lakebed and contains rocks and sediment which the rover plans to collect up so that it can be examined to find out whether life ever existed on Mars.
Aside from searching for evidence of ancient life, the rover is also carrying the Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment (MOXIE) which will try to produce oxygen. This part of the mission is key for future human-led missions to Mars where resources will be scarce and the ability to generate oxygen essential.
By Usama Jawad96
Clubhouse confirms security breach, deploys new safeguards
by Usama Jawad
Private social app Clubhouse allows users to engage in informal conversations. The invite-only iOS application is used by Elon Musk with Facebook also looking to clone the chat service. However, concerns were raised around Clubhouse a couple of weeks ago with the Stanford Internet Observatory (SIO) citing numerous potential security weaknesses in the service. Today, Clubhouse has confirmed a security breach and placed new safeguards to prevent similar incidents in the future.
This situation feeds into the security concerns raised by the SIO a few days ago. One of these was Clubhouse user and chatroom IDs were being transmitted over the internet in plaintext instead of being encrypted.
Furthermore, SIO also revealed that the backend of the platform is handled by a Shanghai-based startup called Agora Inc. The Chinese company states that it "temporarily" stores raw audio data for processing in its servers but it is currently unknown how long this time period is and where the servers are situated. In a statement to The Verge, the firm confirmed that it does not route traffic produced by non-Chinese users through China. However, Agora declined to go into details about the security mechanisms and protocols in place to prevent security breaches, such as the one that took place over the weekend.
Source: Bloomberg | Image via Walk the Chat
By Rich Woods
Dolby On now supports live-streaming on Android
by Rich Woods
A couple of months ago, Dolby introduced its Dolby On app for Android, also adding Twitch integration for its iOS app. Now, the company is going for feature parity between the two platforms, as it's adding live-streaming to the Android app.
There are two ways that you can use the new live-streaming feature. First is through the native Twitch integration, and the other is through RTMP (real-time messaging protocol). To use the latter, you just have to choose the "paste your own URL" option, and then you can use it to connect to YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo, and more.
The whole idea behind Dolby On is to let users record or stream video with the best possible audio quality. As Dolby puts it, "The value of camera quality at the moment of capture is well understood, but quality audio is often left to postproduction editing to create “good” sound." With Dolby On, it automatically adjusts things like noise reduction by doing a sound check in a countdown before the video starts recording or streaming.
The Dolby On app is free, and for the Android version, the update is available now and you can get it from the Google Play Store here.
By Rich Woods
Dolby On is now available for Android, and iOS gets Twitch integration
by Rich Woods
Already available on iOS, Dolby announced that its Dolby On app is now available on Android. The app is designed for recording audio and video with the best possible sound quality.
After you tap to start recording, there will be a countdown before it starts. During that time, the app detects ambient noise and removes it, although this feature can be turned off in settings if you want. It applies effects like compression, EQ, limiting, noise reduction, spatial effects, and more.
After you record your track, you can edit it from within the app. In the app, you can toggle the Dolby button on and off, so you can easily hear the difference, and decide if this is a product that you want to keep using.
On top of the new app on Android, the iOS app is also getting a new feature. You'll now be able to stream directly from the app to Twitch. This feature isn't yet available on the new Android app.
The app is available for free from the App Store here and the Play Store here.