Talking tech since 2003

Happy Sunday! It’s time for another edition of the Weekend Wrap-Up, where we get you all caught up on the biggest tech stories from the past week. Companies in the news include Google, Amazon, LG and Viddy. Let’s find out why.

Android Lollipop Launches

Google’s new Nexus toy is out, and Google has now released the operating system that’s running on it. This next version of Android, called Lollipop, launched this past week on the Nexus 9 tablet and has now started rolling out to more of Google’s Nexus devices. New enhancements to the OS include always-on encryption and the introduction of a new design aesthetic: Material. Our own Brian Rubin will be diving into the new stuff in Lollipop in the near future, so stay tuned.

amazon-echoAmazon Unveils Echo, a Smart Speaker

Did you know Amazon had an interest in the smart home space? The company’s announcement of Echo, a smart speaker, took many by surprise, as there wasn’t really any kind of indication such a device was in the pipeline. The company announced the product, which is a sort of Siri-esque assistant that responds to voice commands, at a price of $199. However, if you’re an Amazon Prime subscriber, you can pick it up for a mere $99. The catch: you can’t just buy the Echo right now. You have to request an invitation from Amazon. I’ve put in a request and will let you know if I hear back.

Google & LG Agree to Share Patents in 10-Year Deal

Google and LG have a fair amount of patents between them in the electronics space, and now the two companies won’t have to do a whole lot of extra work to license them from each other. The companies signed a 10-year agreement this past week to license each others patents, which should speed up new developments in the mobile space. We’ll keep you up to speed on any other collaborations that happen between these two companies.

Viddy Set to Shut Down

Some bad news for fans of mobile video sharing. Viddy ushered in the era of filtered videos, taking Instagram’s similar idea with photos and applying it to clips filmed on smartphones. That service is set to shut down on December 15, giving users time to go and export their creations before they disappear. The Viddy apps have already been pulled from both the App Store and the Play Store.

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